From the Heartland

This is my soap box, on these pages I publish my opinions on firearms and any other subject I feel like writing about.

Friday, December 31, 2004

Lincoln Smoking ban kicks in at midnight Saturday.

As reported in the Lincoln Journal Star; Sometime Monday morning, Miles Johnston will step out from behind the counter at Cliff's Smoke Shop, move to the store's smoking area and light his pipe.

Go for it Miles, there are a lot of Lincolnites with you in spirit.

On Thursday, SS Police Chief Tom Casady said he hadn't heard that Johnston planned to continue to allow smoking in Cliff's Smoke Shop after New Year's Day. The chief laughed when told of his plan.
"If Mr. Johnston violates the law, I'll help him to self-actualize in his attempt at civil disobedience," Casady said.

I know you will Tom, it is in your character to do just that.

He also reiterated that his officers will begin enforcing the ban at the stroke of midnight, 2005, one hour before the city's bars close for the night.

Yup, people smoking in bars meer minutes after the law goes into effect is so much more dangerous than people firing guns and drunk drivers prowling the city streets on New Years Eve. Glad to see you have your priorities in order Chief.

He isn't concerned about the possibility of provoking hundreds of New Year's Eve revelers.
In other words you and your storm troopers minions are going to storm the local drinking establishments and harrass a bunch of happy drunks on New Years Eve. Yes Sir Tom good way to start a new year, make sure the populace is still firmly under your thumb.

"I don't see how it's any more volatile than ... any one of dozens and dozens of other violations," he said. "I don't know how I can make this any more clear. We're going to start at midnight."

Well Chief maybe you don't see anything volitile about crashing a bunch of bars at Midnight New Years Eve to enforce a new law on a bunch drunk people but I do. I hope I'm wrong but I have a feeling there is going to be a whole slew of ancillary charges cited as well when the previously happy revelers are confronted by the brute force of the Lincoln Police Department. You know like disturbing the peace, drunk in public and refusing to obey an officer. Maybe that is what your hoping for as well Chief.

Lately, Johnston has talked a lot about how smoke shops should be exempted from the ban.
Well of course they should be.

"I mean, 90 percent of people who are in here are smokers. It makes sense,"

The earlier, so-called "partial ban" discussed by the City Council did exempt them, as do bans in California, New York and Florida, he says.

Even the People in those states have more sense than the Lincoln City Council. Imagine that!!

It doesn't make legal sense to the assistant city attorney, who says the city's residents don't eat food inside grocery stores or drink alcohol inside liquor stores.

I'll give you the liquor store thing councellor, but many grocery stores I know of sell food for on site consumption. Where do you shop?

"I recognize the (tobacco store) argument, but carving out exceptions isn't something that's legally sound to start," she says.

To start? Well let's see where the start really was Barrister. The City Council orginally passed a law that excempted smoke shops. It was a law most everyone could live with. But then a few short weeks later that same City Council in a "Midnight session" recinded the orginal law and replaced it with a total and complete ban.

The uproar in the community, even from non-smokers, was such that that ballot petition initiatives were circulated and enough signatures were gathered to force the measure to be placed on the November ballot.

What choices did the citizens of Lincoln have? The only choices were a partial ban or a total ban. The choice of no ban at all was not on the ballot. So the City Council in effect said; We have determined that the residents of Lincoln will bend to our will because we run this city and this is what we decree.

Having Lorded themselves over Lincolnites in the true spirit of the Third Riech Jolly old Englands Royalty, The City Council in their infinate wisdom is about to unleash the Sheriff of Naughtingham on the good Citizens.

Oh and just for the record; I do not Smoke

Thursday, December 30, 2004

I'm still here

Thank you everyone for sticking around, it has been a great week. Warning Old wornout Cliche dead ahead; If I had known grand kids were so much fun we would have had them first.

We have five point five grandchildren, the oldest is a girl who turned 6 in December, two other grand daughters that turned 5 and 4 in December, two grandsons that will be 1 in February, the other will be 3 in March. The point five is scheduled to join the family sometime in August at last report.

Watching kids, especially grend kids tear into Christmas wrapping is definately a spectator sport worth watching.

This past year, as I do every year I read several books. I would like to take this time to recommend a few of them as well worth reading.

Unfit for Command - John O'Neill & Jerome Corsi
Probably only a select few recluses living in high mountain caves have not heard of this one. Yes the election is over and the book is about John Kerry, but this does not detract from the book one iota. If you haven't read it you should.

The Meaning of Is - Bob Barr
I profiled this book a few entries ago and highly recommend this for anyone that wants to more fully understand the Clinton Administration and what this Country may be in store for should Mrs. Clinton succeed in attaining at least a four year lease on the White House.

Treason - Ann Coulter
A definative history of liberal politics from the end of the second World War. Coulter lays it all out in one book that may or may not change your minds about the liberal left, but after reading it you will certainly know the truth.

How to Talk to a Liberal if you Must - Ann Coulter
This is essentially a compilation of Coulters weekly columns over the last several years. Written in a hard bitten witty style Coulter's remarks and analogies are impressive whether you agree with her opinions or not.

These are some of the more prominate and/or controversial books I have read this year and again I highly recommend them.

We will be out of town for the New year. I am leaving the laptop at home this time, so this will probably be the only entry before Monday, but I did want to take a few minutes to thank you all for hanging in there with me and let you know that I am still around.

Please enjoy your New year celebrations, drink responsibly, have a designated driver and if some one asks for your keys because they think your too impaired to drive; Don't be a butthead, they have your best interest and safety at heart, give them the keys.

Happy New year everyone may health and prosperity be yours in 2005.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

Due to the Holidays and the Gun's house being the family gathering center for these auspicious occassions blogging will be light to non-existant over the next several days.

When I started this Blog in July I had no idea what to expect. Since then you have given me a great deal of positive re-enforcement and encouragement. It has left me with the feeling that I am genuinely providing something worth while.

Thank you to God and Family for the time, strength, incite and courage to write this Blog.

Thank you everyone that reads this and especially those that have taken time to comment on select postings that were of interest to you.

Thank you as well to all of the other Bloggers that have linked to my postings, it is a privilage to be recognized by my peers for something I have written. Most of them are on my Blogroll and I read them everyday, if you have the time please do so, it is worth it.

Thank you to Publicola, who believed that I had some things to say worth reading, for insisting that I start my own Blog. Thank to SayUncle for providing me the opportunity to be a part of the Shooters Carnival, it is a privilage to be able to post my writings there with other really knowledgeable firearms enthusiasts. Thank you to Jed at Freedom Sight for providing the Saturday Fusillade for the time that you did.

As I said in a previous post Merry Christmas to each and all of you. May your New Year be prosperous and successfull.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

As a member of which party will Hagel run for President in 2008?

Recently, in an effort to distance himself from the current administrion in an effort to pad his chances for a run for the White House in 2008 Senator Chuck Hagel has been running his mouth about Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.

In response to Rumsfeld "You go to war with the military you have, not the one you wish you had";

U.S. Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Nebraska, said troops in Iraq "deserved a far better answer than that flippant response."

I did not realize that stating the cold hard facts was now considered flippant Senator. The truth is Senator that neither the President nor Secretary Rumsfeld can say publically why the military is in the shape it is.

It is not proper for one administration to publically critisize the actions of a previous administration, and you know it. Just like you know the real reason the military is in the shape it was when President Bush was sworn in. You know you can get all the mouth-all-mighty you want and the administration cannot respond in kind because they have too much honor and character to publically deride the previous president, no matter how thruthful it is, and you know that too.

But wait there's more;

"That might work in a newsroom where you can be cute with a television audience," he told CNN this week, "but not in a room where you're putting men and women in harm's way. I wonder what the parents thought."

I know what some of the parents think; they know what a sad state of affairs this countries military and foreign policies were in when President Bush was elected the first time. That is why they voted for him.

Every time things got a little hot for our troops during Clintons tenure he cut and ran, never once did he give the military the support it needed. Never once did he respond with the authority he should have. The first time the Trade Center was hit, the downed Blackhawk, the U.S Cole, the U.S. Embassies in Africa, and others, all attacks on the United States that went unanswered. Because of that people like bin Laden and Hussein reached the in-escapable conclusion that the once mighty United States was being run by a bunch of cowards that would not commit troops to anything that might get them hurt. That is why we had 911 Senator Hagel.

Last but not least;

Rumsfeld told the troops that shortages of armor did not stem from a lack of money but were "a matter of physics." The manufacturers of add-on armor are producing it as fast as humanly possible, he said.

Senator Hagel you have been a Senator from Nebraska since 1996, in all of those early years no one seems to remember you complaining that the military was falling apart under Clintons watch. Why weren't you a voice in the darkness then? Surely your military experience told you then something was wrong, why did you wait eight years to say something? Your silence then was Golden Senator.

So why now? Why are you showing all this care and concern for the military now? We know why Senator, your hitting all the Sunday shows strutting, preaching and posturing to make yourself heard so that everyone will know who you are when you toss your hat in the ring in a bid for the White House in 2008.

You were head of the Re-elect Geaorge Bush for President Campaign in Nebraska and during the election process you constantly reminded people of the mistakes you thought the President was making. Some would question whether that was being loyal to the party.

During the the Republican Convention you co-hosted, in the same city, with former Senator Bob Kerrey a dinner for Presidential rival John Kerry. Some would question whether that was being loyal to the party.

Now you are critisizing the President and his Secretary of Defense when there are some of us that know full well you know the truth about why the military was in the shape it was. Some would question whether that was being loyal to the party.

I think the only question that needs answered is; under which party banner are you going to run in 2008?

Clinton-Hagel 2008, I can just see it now.

Monday, December 20, 2004

A Gunscribe Christmas

In many homes Christmas dinner means the traditional Turkey with all of the trappings. For more than a decade "Casa de Gun" has replaced this tradition with one of our own.

The main course served up at our abode consists of home made Enchiladas. Senora Gun prepares these to perfection using either chicken or game from the freezer if any is still available by Christmas. Past presentations have been done with turkey, pheasant or partridge.

Side dishes to the Enchiladas usually include home made versions of salsa, guacamole, and tortilla chips.

Desert generally includes apple pie and of course home made ice cream.

(Recipes available on request)

Another tradition observed is a trek to the trap range, with hand or foot operated throwers and of course handloaded shotshells.

Here's to each and every one of you that read this Blog. May the spirit of the season be kind to you and your families.

I wish for all of you the Merriest Christmas and a Happy and prosperous New Year.

For all my friends who's family history comes from south of the border - Deseo para usted la Feliz Navidad y un Año Nuevo feliz y próspero.

And just for Geek avec des 45 (for not having to write the Bill of Rights in la lengua francesa) - Je souhaite tout le vous le plus Joyeux Noël et nouvelle une année heureuse et prospère.

Representitive Osborne shafts his hard working middle class constituency

Former Nebraska Cornhuskers football coach, now U.S. Representitive (R-Ne) is gouging the majority of his constituency in the back. There is no other way to understand recent comments by the recently re-elected Osborne.

In a convoluted Associated Press report Osborne suggests that Nebraska Ranchers and Farmers do not need to participate in funded conservation programs and encourages them to turn their backs on their fellow citizens.

U.S. Rep. Tom Osborne says farmers can do more to maximize the use of depleted irrigation reservoirs than just enrolling acres in federally funded conservation programs.

The Conservation Reserve Program, which reduces soil erosion, protects the Nation's ability to produce food and fiber, reduces sedimentation in streams and lakes, improves water quality, establishes wildlife habitat, and enhances forest and wetland resources, allows land owners to enroll a portion of their property.

When property is enrolled in the CRP it is by regulation under the control of the government for the purposes of hunting. In other words hunters do not need the permission of the land owner to use that section of property. It is being rented by the tax payers for the purposes expressed in the previous paragraph and under those circumstances the tax payers have a right to utilize said section of property. As an anology, if you rent a house of apartment you have the right to use it as the leasee.

What Representitive Osborne is proposing is landowners develop their own conservation plan for the land and then charge people out the bank account for using it.

"He pointed out that some landowners in South Dakota are commanding hunting fees of $150 per gun per day. Multiply that by 15 to 20 days and four or five hunters a day, "and that's a pretty good source of revenue."

Yes it is a good source or revenue Coach, great policy you have there; lock it up and jack up a user fee that the average person you represent can not even begin to afford and to hell with the middle-class citizens in your district that voted for and trusted you to represent them. Maybe Representitive Osborne and his elite cadre of friends can afford to pay that kind of money, but how many of his constituents can? There are not many people living in Nebraska that can afford $150 a day to hunt. For many of the citizens in Osborne's district, with families to support, $150 represents the best part of one weeks pay after taxes. What Osborne is suggesting is that area landowners create their own hunting preserves that will only be affordable to those that can afford it; Out of town or state Doctors, Lawyers and Politicians.

That Osborne would take this tact is despicable and a dilliberate snub of the majority of people that elected him to office. Osborne ought to ashamed of himself for evening suggesting something like this.

The CRP program has been a cost effective way to control erosion and provide habitat for the perpetuation of the wildlife species that inhabit these areas. It also provides an affordable form of recreation for the average citizen to escape the rigors of life for a few hours of relaxation.

Osborne proposal seeks to further restrict the ability of the average person to enjoy the great outdoors. From that Osborne should be ashamed and condemned for his elitest attitude. The question is who does Representitive Osborne really represent? His elite out of town or out of state friends or the people of his district?

This type of proposal is a direct contridiction to what Senator Ben Nelson (D-Ne)is promalgating in this previous entry. This should be remembered if Coach Osborne decides he wants to be Governor in a few years.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

20,000 guns laws illegal?

The publication of the Department of Justice's memorialization that the Second Amendment is an individual one, and not the collective or quasi-collective right as some are ought to think, has received a lot of attention around the web. Granted it is a huge read but well worth the time.

Some are bemoaning that it does not address the constitutionality of the existing 20,000 gun laws. Granted it is not everything that some of us wish it was, but the attorneys that prepared it were limited by the question they were asked to render an opinion on. The Department of Justice was asked to opine whether the Second Amendment was an individual one or not, the scope of their response is tailored to that question.

The attorneys did however, in reference to court decision, state;

"These decisions did not analyze, at least not in depth, the Amendment's text or history. Rather, they relied on Tot or Cases (or their progeny), claimed support from Miller, or both. As the Ninth Circuit recently recognized in the course of adhering to its collective-right position, these earlier decisions reached their conclusions "with comparatively little analysis," "largely on the basis of the rather cursory discussion in Miller, and touched only briefly on the merits of the debate." (31)

One could garner from this that the writers are implying that the courts have been either lazy or agenda driven in their deciding the Second Amendment. It does not come right out and say the courts are wrong but it certainly alludes to it based on the use of the words "relied", "comparitively little analysis", "largely on the basis" and "briefly on the merits". By discrediting the courts current perception of Miller and these other cases that are based on Miller they are by proxy indicating that any number of the 20,000 current gun laws are unconstitutional.

Note: All bold highlight is mine for emphisis.

Friday, December 17, 2004

U.S Justice Department Proclaims It is an Individual Right

Just received this in an email and I haven't had time to read it yet myself. I'll put it out for everyone to read. I may update with comments later.

Been at the Doctors most of the afternoon, for the routine semi-annual stuff Cholesterol down to 206 and the bad level is 131 and falling, so I'm feeling pretty good.

Update- I have read about half of this thing and the conclusion. Basically from what I have read it gives one of the best explanations of Miller I have ever read and calls into question the efficiancy of all court decisions since then.

They basically (ed..and to use my words, not theirs) imply that there has been a distinct misunderstanding of Miller by the Courts and that through a process of ignorance, agenda and laziness the courts have not done the research necessary to make an informed intellegent decision on the actual meaning of the second amendment.

This document was prepared using our tax dollars by the following people;
Steven G. Bradbury - Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General
Howard C. Nielson, Jr. - Deputy Assistant Attorney General
C. Kevin Marshall - Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General

In my opinion these were tax dollars well spent, would that more of our public servants have the backbone, and intestinal fortitude to present such material for public consumption.

Agree with it of not the Sarah Brady's and Million Commie Mommies of the world are wrong and have always been wrong.

It is the considered opinion of these fine Gentlemen that citizens of the United States are protected by the Constitution for the ownership of military firearms. In their analysis of Miller they make the following observation;

"Even so, absent from the Court's opinion in Miller was any discussion of whether the defendants were members of the National Guard or any other organized military force, whether they were transporting the shotgun in the service of such a force, or whether they were "physically capable of" bearing arms in one and thus even eligible for service. The nature of the weapon at issue, not of the defendants or their activities, appeared to be the key fact, and this aspect of the opinion tends to point toward the individual-right view rather than the quasi-collective-right view."

Miller was never really decided by the Supreme Court. They remanded it back to the lower court "Because they had not been asked nor was it within their perview to conclude whether a "sawed-off shotgun" was an impliment of the militia and therefore protected under the second amendment.

"Citing an 1840 decision of the Tennessee Supreme Court, Aymette v. State, the Court concluded that it was not "within judicial notice" that a sawed-off shotgun was a weapon that was "any part of the ordinary military equipment" or whose use "could contribute to the common defence." Absent evidence, therefore, the Court could not "say that the Second Amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear such an instrument."

This opinion published by the Justice Department goes way beyond Miller and and rightfully makes the case that the language of the Second Amendment refers to an individual one.

I have no idea what kind of effect this will have on the agendas of the legislators and judges, but i do know know that this is the single most well researched and accurate document that I have seen published in a very long time.

As Pal John Farnum says; Spread the sunshine

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Nelson says yes for Nebraskans and no to profit hunting

According to Senator Ben Nelson (D-Ne) recent court rulings in Arizona and Nevada has turned the management of fish and non-migratory wildlife in those states over to the federal government. Because of that he has introduced legislation in the Senate to protect the states rights to manage their own hunting and fishing programs.

This is about protecting the rights of states to do what they need to do to protect wildlife," he said.

The federal government has long held dominion over migratory wildlife, the most prolific of which are Ducks and Geese. Migratory species typically transit the three countries, Canda, Mexico, and the United States, that make up the bulk of North America. Because all three countries have a vested interest in the welfare of these migratory species the governments at the federal level must be able to enact treaties and agreements. That is generally where involvement at the federal level ends. Management of non-migratory species has legally and traditionally been the purvue of the individual states.

License Fees and Non-resident access
For many years it has been customary for states to charge more for and offer fewer non-resident fishing and hunting licenes than residents are available to residents. This has not been to discourage out of state sportsman from participating; it simply recognizes that the bulk of state wildlife funds are paid for by residents of a state and that takes precedent over non-residents.

"Restrictions on numbers and access are necessary to prevent overhunting of a species. Charging nonresidents a premium not only limits their number, but also reserves most of the surplus game for resident hunters who support the conservation work being done in their state," Nelson said.

Restrictions on the numbers and access are necessary to prevent over hunting. This is a concept that people opposed to hunting find so hard to understand; Regulated hunting has and never will result in an endangered species. As I have written in previous entries, here and here Wildlife Managers have done such a fabulous job of management that overpopulation of many of the species, in different parts of the country, has reached or surpassed critical levels.

Jim Posewitz, director of Orion, The Hunter's Institute and an author of several books on hunting ethics, said North America's conservation pioneers saved wildlife from being wiped out by market hunters. Their support of a democratic conservation ethic, in which wildlife belongs to the people, restored many game animals and other wildlife to healthy populations.

Wildlife Management again
All species need air, water, shelter, food, space and companionship (habitat) in order to survive. A given area of any size will only support a maximum number of wildlife without damage to the animals or the habitat (carrying capacity). When one species of wildlife has reached or exceeded their capacity (surplus)it not only affects them, but every other species that inhabits that area. To not hunt (preservation) consigns much of the wildlife to a horrible and painfull death of disease and starvation in what is refered to as winterkill. By setting responsible hunting seasons much of the game that is expected to die a winter death can be harvested and consumed (conservation). Regulated hunting is a necessary part of wilflife management, without it many species would experience catastrophic winter die off. Not only would the animals that could have been hunted die, so would most if not all of the species in that area.

Now the threat is back in the form of guides and outfitters who seek to sell wildlife to the highest bidder. He applauded Nelson's bill and said it needs to pass quickly before more states face the types of legal challenges in Arizona and Nevada.

"We have to erect a barrier between the conservation of wildlife and the commerce of wildlife or we will lose everything we have restored over the past century," Posewitz said.

Property rights and being good neighbors
There in lies the problem at least as far as Nebraska is concerned. For several years now Outfitters that sell guided hunts in the Cornhusker State have been petitioning the legislature to change the law to make landowner hunting licenses transferable. In Nebraska property owners can purchase (over-the-counter) one either sex deer license for every eighty acres they own or legally lease. Another proposal would set aside a number of permits strictly for guides and outfitters. If one or both of these laws are enacted the guides and outfitters that lease large tracts of land will be able to either buy a specific licenses for only out-of-state hunters or one for every eighty acres they claim and then transfer that permit to a client (hunter) as part of the the fee.

The problem is much deeper than just the license issue; many people that have been long time hunters in certain areas are being shut out by big money. To explain that lets assume that, for years the local feed dealer and his family may have had permission to hunt on a nearby farm or ranch only to be suddenly denied access because an outfitter or a few guys from the big city pooled their money made the land owner a deal he couldn't refuse; thousands of dollars a year for exclusive rights to any and all of the hunting on that property. (ed .. I know of one instance in western Nebraska wher this scenario actually happened)

Right or wrong that has created some very hard feelings among neighbors that have been friends or associates for a generations or more. The people that are being shut out see these proposed laws as another way of locking up even more land and any block of permits solely designated for non-residents is that many fewer that will be available to residents in the annual lottery draw.

The way some of Nebraska's hunters see it they are being shut out and denied licenses so that the outfitters and guides that have the capital to negotiate away their existing permission to hunt can make even more profit. Property owners have the right (ed..or should have) to do what ever they want with their property. If someone offers them a lot of money for a hunting lease they have every right to sign that lease. There are alot of finacially sound reasons for a landowner to enter into a lease like that.

The point here is the following example; For years you and I have had an agreement, for years before that our fathers maintained the same agreement, we socialize, our wives are on the PTA, our kids play on the same sports teams at the local schools and suddenly I won't let you hunt on my land anymore because I have accepted thirty pieces of silver from an out of state entity for the exclusive hunting rights on my property. As a landowner I am certainly entitled to make that choice, but if and when I do, what does that say about the kind of a friend and neighbor I have become?

Senator Nelson's Bill protects the legally recognized states right to manage their own populations of non-migratory wildlife. Senator Ben Nelson a Democrat, unlike John Kerry, is a hunter he understands the issues that face not only Wildlife Managers, and hunters, but landowners as well. This bill should be supported by everyone that considers themselves a sportsman. Big money is moving into the business of hunting and has been for several years. I am not opposed to guides and outfitters by any stretch of the imagination. I have used them in the past, intend to in the future and, have even done abit of it myself on occassion, but to change the law to further enable the profiteering of the state's wildlife at the expense of the resident hunters is just not good sense.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

My Darwin Award Nomination

Space was created in the shallow end of "Gene Pool" when two Idaho men apparently did not know the difference between a military "Flak Jacket" and the body armor that police officers commonly wear.

Their shade tree scientific experiment went arry after the hapless duo popped a couple of rounds into the "vest" as it was propped against a dirt bank. Emboldened by the results, the younger student of "ballistic impact" donned the garmet and entreated his elder companion to shoot him. The conclusion of this backyard science project resulted in his co-hort being charged with involuntary manslaughter.

Police said the vest was designed to protect against grenade fragments, not bullets.

I'm not sure there is a French word for "regret".

I am assuming the author of this prose choses to remain annonymous and therefore I can not give a much deserved atribution.
I recieved this from my Uncle in an e-mail and want to share it with all.

Poem for the French - written by an American Patriot....

Eleven thousand soldiers
lay beneath the dirt and stone,
all buried on a distant land
so far away from home.

For just a strip of dismal beach
they paid a hero's price,
to save a foreign nation
They all made the sacrifice.

And now the shores of Normandy
Are lined with blocks of white:
Americans who didn't turn
from someone else's plight.

Eleven thousand reasons
for the French to take our side,
but in the moment of our need,
they chose to run and hide.

Chirac said every war means loss,
perhaps for France that's true,
for they've lost every battle
since the days of Waterloo.

Without a soldier worth a damn
to be found within the region,
the French became the only land
to need a Foreign Legion.

You French all say we're arrogant.
Well hell, we've earned the right--
We saved your sorry nation
when you lacked the guts to fight.

But now you've made a big mistake,
and one that you'll regret;
you took sides with our enemies,
and that we won't forget.

It wasn't just our citizens
you spit on when you turned,
but every one of yours
who fell the day the towers burned.

You spit upon our soldiers,
on our pilots and Marines,
and now you'll get a little sense
of just what payback means.

So keep your Paris fashions
and your wine and your champagne,
and find some other market
that will buy a French airplane.

And try to find somebody else
to wear your French cologne,
for you're about to find out
what it means to stand alone.

You see, you need us far more
than we ever needed you.
America has better friends
who know how to be true.

I'd rather stand with warriors
who have the will and might,
than huddle in the dark
with those whose only flag is white.

I'll take the Brits, the Aussies,
the Israelis and the rest,
for when it comes to valor
we have seen that they're the best.

We'll count on one another
as we face a moment dire,
while you sit on the sideline
with a sign, "friendship for hire."

We'll win this war without you
and we'll total up the cost,
and take it from your foreign aid,
and then you'll feel the loss.

And when your nation starts to fall,
well Frenchie, you can spare us,
just call the Germans for a hand,
they know the way to Paris!

Please forward to all Americans, so they will not forget.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Suppose we had a city and no one came?

Planing Director wants to stifle even more tourism
City Planning Director Marvin Krout wants the city to pass an ordinance for something that is already in the state statutes;

It's sort of a backup ban, because the state already forbids the erection of new billboards along interstate highways.

I am not suggesting that there not be any regulation at all concerning billboards. Billboards in some areas are so prolific that a person could not read all of them and still be considered a safe driver. Not only that with too many of them they have a reverse advertising effect (nobody pays attention to them)and create an undesirble obstruction of the local scenery.

It does seem however that the City Planning in it's zeal to transform Lincoln into the kind of population center that only they envision is, to a large extent, discouraging tourism.
We're from the Government we're here to help
City planners say most billboards are leased by national companies selling products, not local attractions. And, Krout said, state law already allows "government signs" to promote local attractions, under certain conditions.

Here we go again, "We're the government we know what's best you, so sit down and shut up. If we want your business known (certain conditions) to travelers we will put up a sign for you at your expense. That is if we feel you deserve the recognition, but you gotta be nice to us and follow our rules."

It's the Economy Stupid
The first problem with that is economics. When there is only a very limited amount of billboards allowed the cost of advertising on that board is prohibitive to many local businesses. Of course the only ones that can afford it are national companies with million dollar advertising budgets. If Krout hasn't noticed these are also mostly national companies that have strategically located their businesses next to the "big road". After all when property values sky-rocketed for those prime locations they were again the only business entities that could afford the investment. If you don't believe that just take a drive north on 27th Street from Superior to the Interstate and tell me how many "non national businesses" have been built out there.

As for the "government signs" they simply display the LOGO and the only businesses they promote are those that are within a few miles of the Interstate and tell you which way to turn once you leave the Highway. You know the blue ones I'm talking about. The ones that depending on the time of day and weather are sometimes very hard to read and then they are only posted a mile from the exit. Anyone passing through Lincoln seeing these would think that the only thing there is a couple of Motel 8's, some McDonalds, a few national brand gas stations and a Dairy Queen. Oh yea and a Cracker Barrel.

Not that there is anything wrong with those brands, (ed... I had a McDLT the other day) there is just so much more to see and do in Lincoln and the planning commission is either ignoring it or squandering every chance to promote it. If the City of Lincoln wants tourism dollars they are going to have to advertise it, people are just not going to be driving by and think, "Gee I wonder what's here, lets waste several hours friving around looking for something and if by chance we do it will be time to go before we actually get to check it out." There has to be a hook, something promotional that catches their attention makes them want to stop. People need a reason to come to Lincoln for something besides a Husker game.
Local Businesses loose out to "Proper Planning"
What about local businesses or other entities that could attract some of the transient traffic if travellers knew they were there? Supposedly the planners are concerned with bringing tourism money to the Capitol City. When they deliberately make it impossible for local businesses to call attention to themselves all they are doing is further lining the already deep pockets of national businesses. Yes I know they pay local taxes and hire local residents, but how much of their normal operating expence for product is actually purchased from the local economy? Very little of the profit shows up on the local economy either. It is paid out to shareholders that by and large do not live in the area.

Yes there should be a limit on the number, size, and type of billboards along the corridors that lead into Lincoln. It is a balance that at this time is weighted toward the only ones that can afford it, national money. Lincoln is like the majority of towns, cities and villages all over this country, people normally do not make this a vacation destination or a travel stop unless they know somebody that lives here or need a tank of gas. In order to get the transient traffic off the Interstate and into the local establiments they have to be told there is something here worth stopping for. Afforadble and attractive billboards are a cost effective way of doing that.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

I guess I should be careful what I wish for. I just might get it

Well actually I wasn't wishing that Kerik would withdraw from consideration for the position of Homeleand Security Director. To be truthfull I was hoping that they would find some reason not to confirm him.

My big problem with Kerik is that he is the former NYC Chief of Police and that usually means rabid anti-gun. Yea, Yea I know that a Cabinet Member can not make or change law, but they can in some cases issue regulations. Besides that they more than anyone has the Presidents ear and can most certainly influence legislation and/or a signature to said legislation and/or Executive order.

But then that brings to mind another old cliche; The replacement may be worse.

Well I guess we'll just have to see.

P.S. It would seem that Nanny's and Interns are the most destructive political force in our time.

Friday, December 10, 2004

The Meaning of Is by my friend Bob Barr

When William Jefferson Clinton was first elected to the Presidency I believed that he was just another inept Southern Democrat Governor that had bumbled his way into the White House on a left-wing platform of lofty ideals. He would get his four years of fame and then drift into the pages of obscurity. As his Presidency progressed I soon realized that he was not the bumbling idealist that former President Jimmy Carter turned out to be. Bill Clinton aided and abetted by his wife were and still are political powers to be reckoned with. As Bob Barr writes in his book Bill Clinton either does not have a conscience or has compromised it so many times he is unaffected by the decisions he has to make. (ed.. I think the same can be said of Hillary)

Having just completed reading the book “The Meaning of Is The Squandered Impeachment And Wasted Legacy Of William Jefferson Clinton", I was appalled at what I did not know about the administration and the impeachment of President William Jefferson Clinton. I have always been a conscientious voter that prided myself in my knowledge of current events. I have always known that the mainstream media was bias, at the time I had not yet come to realize just how partisan and liberal it was, and still is in regards to reporting the real truth. Bob Barr was there and his book records the truth about the Presidency of Bill Clinton as it actually occurred, not the way it has been revised countless times in the mainstream media and other books written by the "Friends of Bill".

The Presidency of William Clinton is a black mark on this country that accurate history will have a long time forgetting. The casual disregard for the security of this nation by Bill and Hillary Clinton is reflected in the nefarious individuals they allowed, by invitation and against the better judgment of the United States Secret Service, to roam the hallowed halls of the peoples house at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. During his eight years in office there is not a single group of his political supporters that Bill Clinton did not turn his back on. That most of them to this day still support him is impossible to understand. Insulated by and with the help of a hand picked cadre of politically appointed loyal cronies the Clintons plotted and executed the destruction of Billy Dale, Linda Tripp, Kathleen Wiley and many others. During their eight year tenure inside the Capital Beltway the Clintons demonstrated that they have a callous disregard for anything but their own continued success and advancement of power.

Bob Barr, at the time a freshman Representative from Georgia, eventually became the single most driving force in the impeachment of President Clinton. Based on his own personal ethics and prior government experience, as a servant of the people Bob understood firsthand the criminal actions of the Clinton Presidency. So much so that he and his staff logged countless hours of investigation and research even before laying the case out before House Speaker Newt Gingrich. Barr's evidence was so convincingly overwhelming that Gingrich gave him the go ahead to introduce a resolution of impeachment in the full house.

Due to the hard work put forth by Congressman Barr and many others, the House of Representatives justifiably impeached a sitting President - William Jefferson Clinton. Truthfully at the time I had a gut feeling that the Senate would not convict a sitting President and I knew it would be for reasons that would have nothing to do with the Presidents guilt or innocence. I didn't find out how right I was until I read this book. I also knew that some of the Presidents actions directly effected national security. Before reading this book I had not realized the depth of these actions and the extreme danger in which this country was placed.

Pursuing the impeachment of President Clinton was a heartfelt and necessary endeavor for Barr. One that had a tremendous strain and affect on both him and his family. The reading of his factual documentation is sometimes over whelming as he lays it all out from the beginning, sparing none of the details, to the bitter end. Some of these admissions I am sure were painful for Bob to put on paper, and he is equally critical of himself concerning the way some of the events were handled.

Bob also readily admits that he knew there would be consequences for his actions. Despite best efforts by the Clinton's dirty tricks team, which were aided and abetted by the mainstream media and Porn Magnate Larry Flint (Hustler Magazine), Bob Barr stayed the course that was dictated by his own moral compass.

My wife and I have the pleasure of knowing and spending time with Bob Barr. I anticipate there will in be more time in the future as well. Bob Barr is a genuine reflection of the stalwart character that is seldom seen in an American Statesmen these days. There are few that can be called to that category and the only other one that comes immediately to mind is former President Ronald Reagan.

“The Meaning of Is” is a brutally honest chronicle of a dreadful time in American history written truthfully by someone that was a part of and shaped the outcome of that history. This book should be required reading in every college level Government Class and for anyone that does not fully comprehend the devastation that the Clintons have and are still doing to this great nation.

Personal note from a friend;

Thank You Bob for your service to this great nation and thank you for the truthful narration on the genuine legacy of a disastrous and shameful Presidency.

What is wrong with the Education system.

That is not a query, there is no question mark at the end of that sentence. It is statement on which Zendo Deb waxes eloquent today. I agree with her assessment and don't think it can be said much better.

A must read.

Education or training for government dependence

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Cat Blogging Friday

Ok here is my first attempt at a picture.

The following was in an email I received from Spoons a few weeks ago;

"You ought to put a picture up one of these days. Friday catblogging has become something of a tradition.


So here it is three or four Fridays later and I think maybe I can get this thing to work.

If this actually worked you are looking at three of our four felines.

The Orange furball is affectionately named Emily and was born almost three years ago with a hip deformity and hops more like a rabbit than runs like a cat. The Grey blob next to her is a thirteen year old female that we have always called Gemini or "Gemmies" for short. The other grey one in the back is a twelve year old male that answers to the name Behtoven or some times just "Puppy". He thinks he's a dog but that is a whole nother story.

Hey Spoons, thanks for the incentive I needed to finally get the pic posting thing figured out.

A Question posed

Since beginning of this blog I have conquered some of the HTML requirements of the template and added some counters, a different type comments section and a trackback feature.

I am slowly getting into the various options that will hopefully continue to make this a more comfortable site to visit. I am currently exploring the process of adding pictures to posts and considering a "Click here to read more" function.

As far as adding pictures, I have a site to upload the pictures to I am just sorting through the different programs to accomplish that. As far as the "Click here to read more" function, some of the Blogs I read have it others don't.

I personally don't have any feelings on it one way or the other, but I know that some of my post can get rather long-winded, so I am asking you the people that read this site which you would prefer;

  1. The continuous one page posts (as they are now) or,
  2. The Main title and the opening with a "click here to read" more option.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

What have you done for our troops?

Hugh Hewitt posted this on his blog and I think it is a wonderfull heartwarming idea.

Finally, from a naval officer I respect a great deal, an e-mail on how to aid wounded troops in the two weeks left before Christmas:
"Yellow ribbons tied around trees and red, white and blue stickers on the backs SUVs saying "Support our Troops" are things that make civilians feel good but do nothing for the men and women actually in uniform.
So please consider the following:

The number ONE request at Walter Reed hospital is phone cards. The government doesn't pay long distance phone charges and these wounded soldiers are rationing their calls home.
Many will be there throughout the holidays.
Really support our troops --Send phone cards of any amount to:

Medical Family Assistance Center Walter Reed Medical Center
6900 Georgia Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20307-5001

They say they need an "endless" supply of these -- any amount even $5 is greatly appreciated.
Walmart has good prices on AT&T cards, Sams Club is even better, if you are a member.
I am sure you would feel better about doing this, than to buy something for a third cousin, that would find it on the closet shelf six months later, and wonder where it came from.
Please pass this portion on, copy and paste it into your e-mail."

Heads up "old soldier war story" dead ahead>> Back in my day phone cards had not been conceived yet. Making calls entailed doing so collect or engaging in a full frontal assault on an unsuspecting pay phone with a large purple Crown Royal bag of quarters. Many of the servicemen at Walter Reed are not ambulatory and/or do not have immediate access to a pay phone or a Crown Royal bag.

Please in this season of giving consider sending a phone card to a wounded G.I.

Now I'm P&%%ed

Some life form lower than bottom of the pond scum has mailed two of my public officials letters containing mercury. I don't know who is doing this or whether it is some homegrown a&&h*le or not, but dammit this is Lincoln, Nebraska and people here are for the most part cultured. We don't act like this.

It is no big secret that I disagree, sometimes venemately in print with Mayor Colleen Seng and Police Chief Tom Casady, but this really p&%%es me off. I have spent time with the Mayor recently (in fact she presented me with an award that now hangs on my office wall) and I can tell you that she is a very wonderful and attentitive person, that is open to discussion on any issue that affects the city. Chief Casady is not nearly as open minded but there is absolutely no reason either one of these people deserve to have this type of terrorist act visited upon them.

Yes I said terrorist act and I mean it. Terrorism is the act of harming or threatening to harm innocent people of the third part in order to punish or extort the target of the first part. It is ok to have a beef with our public officials, public discourse is healthy and it is what makes government work, but also consider all of the other people (mail carriers, and office workers) that could have been harmed by this hatred for Seng and Casady.

It is my sincere hope that the terrorist/s that perpetrated this horrendous act are very quickly caught and punished to the greatest extent the law allows.

These are my Public Officials how dare anyone try to harm them. I am p&%%ed.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

APLF Jihadists threaten state budgets.

Judicial Terrorism
The Humane Society of the United States and the Fund for Animals are merging and creating an Animal Protection Litigation section (Front), the intended purpose of which is to strongarm the State and Federal Governments into banning all hunting and fishing in the United States. Aided and abetted by sympathetic judges some of whom are already guilty of legislating from the bench, the APLF intends to circumvent the legislative process that is the very bedrock foundation of this country by having the courts declare a multitude of laws unconstitutional in the name of animal rights.

The APLF is expected to be headed by Johnathan Lovvorn, a Barrister in partnership with the Washington, D.C. law firm Meyer & Glitzenstein, a firm the former Fund for Animals had in the past engaed to persue legal battles against sportsman. Four more legal jihadists (litigation attorneys) are expected to be on staff by the end of the year.

Millions of tax Dollars to be wasted
Believing that animals have the same God given rights as Human Beings these home grown legalistic terrorists are planning to use their legal degrees as weapons of mass destruction in an assault on the State and Federal treasuries. Millions of dollars that could be better spent on reducing the National Debt, Public Education, building new bridges and roads are now going to have to be diverted to the courtroom.

What Sportsmen Have done
At the begining of the last century much of this countries wildlife was truely nearing extinction from not only unregulated hunting, but more importantly residential and commercial developement, and it was the sportsmen of this country, not the tree-hugging extremests, that did something about it. In the 1930's sportsmen approached Senator Key Pittman (Nv) and Representitive A. Willis Robertson (Va) with a solution. That solution was sponsored by these two legislators in their respective houses where it was passed and then signed into law by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1937. Know as the Pittman-Robertson Act this law, propsed by sportsmen imposed an 11 percent excise tax on rifles shotgus and ammunition. It was later amended to include archery equipment and handguns. Funds collected under the Pittman-Robertson Act yearly total in the millions of dollars that are not only used to create and rehabilitate wildlife habitat, but also to fund Firearms Safety and Hunter Education Programs. The results of these efforts by sportsmen have been so overwhelming that many species of wildlife are experiencing an catstrophic epidemic of over population.

Lessons Learned
The question, "What if this legal assault by courtroom commandos does in fact succeed and a number of judges enact new law from the bench?", has already been answered. During the 1920's the Federal Government removed all predators, including hunters and an indiginous Native American Indian population from the Kaibab Plateau in the Grand Canyon Rim area in Arizona. Without the four legged and two legged type predators, the deer population quickly exceded the maximum capacity of the habitat on the plateau. All vegetation, including the bark from the trees that was within reach of the deer was stripped clean. From that point with nothing to eat the deer herd suffered a decline in their immune systems that resulted in massive die off from horrible disease and starvation.

Wildlife Management
It is obvious that with all of their college educations collectively the great minds of the Humane Society have absolutely no concept of the balance in nature. In order to grasp the concept of wildlife management the following words must be defined;

Habitat - the elements necessary for a species to survive, air, water, shelter, space and companionship.

Carrying Capacity - The number of animals that can survive in a given area without damage to the habitat or the population of the species.

As there is only so many people that can comfortably live in a house, there is only so much wildlife that can survive in a given area. If that population becomes to large for that area food sources soon become non-existant. When that happens not only does it effect the deer population it also decimates the populations of all other wildlife sharing that habitat. This is why hunting is such an integral part of wildlife management and the survival of the species. In an overpopulated area a certain number of animals must be culled in the fall to ensure the health and well-being of the herds through the winter. It must be understood an area will only support so many animals, anything over that number will not survive the winter. Rather than see these majestic creatures suffer the more violent deaths of disease and starvation it is much better to humanely harvest them for table fare.

Hunting, whether it is done by man or four legged predators, is a vital and necessary part of the balance in nature. If the APLF is allowed to succeed it will have a proven devastating effect not only on the populations of the animals hunted but also all of those that share the same habitat. The proof of that has already been written in the history of the Kaibab Plateau on the Grand Canyon Rim in Arizona. Contrary to popular belief among the tree-hugging community regulated hunting will never result in the extinction of of any species. Regulated hunting would be halted long before a species became endangered. Should the population of a species experience a natural decline hunting in that case would also no longer be allowed.

The Humane Society has been responsible for many good deeds in the past, but the devastation they are seeking to visit upon the wildlife in this country at the expense of the American taxpayer demonstrates a deplorable lack of common sense and from a scientific point of view an act of terrorism.

This story has been covered else where on the net, but since I saw it first at triggerfinger he gets the link.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Semi-Automatic firearms were not designed for the Military

Corrected History
Much of the hype coming from the mainsteam media and anti-gun types centers around the premise that semi-automatic (self-loading) firearms were not designed for nor meant to be used by civilians. Nothing could be farther from the truth and history confirms that. Begining with the advent of the semi-automatically gas-operated firearm in the 1890's, all but a very few firearms were designed with the military in mind and most of those were of the belt fed squad operated variety. In an examining the designs patented by John Moses Browning it is obvious that self-loading firearm designs exclusively for the military were the exception rather than the rule and virtually all of these are based a version that was FIRST released to the civilian market. Very few of his designs entailed government contracts and then only after a similar version had been available on the civilian market for a number of years.

For their own convenience or just a woefull lack of historical knowledge the anti-gun crowd and their accomplices in the media have for several generations mislead the American public into believing that these specific firearms were made only for the military and have no civilian purpose. The gas-operating system, that Browning patened in 1890 and used to market the first successfull self-loading rifle and shotgun to the civilian markets in the early 1900's, is the same gas-operated self-loading system employed by virtually every military arms maker today.

Senate bill S.1431 that would have made the recently sunset Semi-automatic weapons ban permanant contained the following language in Section 2. Definitions. Paragraph (L);

A semiautomatic rifle or shotgun originally designed for military or law enforcement use, or a firearm based on the design of such a firearm, that is not particularly suitable for sporting purposes, as determined by the Attorney General. In making the determination, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that a firearm procured for use by the United States military or any Federal law enforcement agency is not particularly suitable for sporting purposes, and a firearm shall not be determined to be particularly suitable for sporting purposes solely because the firearm is suitable for use in a sporting event. (ed.. color accent mine)

If it were not so serious, it would be laughable. With very rare exceptions there are no firearms that were specifically designed for the military or law enforcement. The base for every military or law enforcement firearm today was originally designed for the civilian market, not the other way around. It is the Military and law enforcement that took these civilian arms and modified them for battlefield use.

John Moses Browning and the Self-loading long arm
Born in 1855 John Moses Browning is the most prolific designer of firearms in American history. Being credited with 128 patents begining in 1879, Browning submitted his first patent for a gas operated firing system 1890. Patent; #471782 January 6, 1890 (filed) March 29, 1892 (granted) AUTOMATIC MAGAZINE-GUN cap over barrel(?!), repeating, gas-operated rifle

Between 1891 and 1893 John Browning patented several plans for Machine Guns designed for the military theater. Foremost among these was the Colt built 1895 Automatic Machine Gun that, during the Spanish-American War earned the nickname "Browning peacemaker". This firearm came mounted on a caison or a tripod and necessitated more than one person to manuever and operate. At the time, Teddy Roosevelt looked upon it unfavorably because it took a mule or multiple soldiers to transport it, even then it was not very portable in a jungle evironment. It was definately not a personal arm designed to be carried by one man. The bulk of his patents including his self-loading designs were originally consigned to arms manufacturers for the civilian market.

One of the first successfully marketed semi-automatic shoulder fired arms designed by Browning was a shotgun that Remington manufactured as their model 11 in 1905. Patent #659507 February 8, 1900(filed) October 9, 1900 (granted) RECOIL-OPERATED FIREARM revolutionary autoloading shotgun. It would be manufactured by Fabrique Nationale in 1903 and by Remington Arms Company in 1905. (Model 11) [1] Addittionally in 1900 Browning applied for and received a patent for the first successfull gas operated semi-automatic rifle that Remington began manufacture of in 1906 as their model 8. Patent #659786 June 6, 1900 (filed) October 16, 1900 (granted) RECOIL-OPERATED FIREARM first successful autoloading high-power rifle [1]; Remington Arms Company in 1906 as Model 8 John Browning patented the gas-operated self-loading design and it was manufactured for and offered to the civilian market. This is essentially the same design that is used by today's military and claimed (by anti-gun folk) to have been designed and developed exclusively for the military. It is the military that has taken this base civilian design and modified it only minimally (adding a bayonette lug) for battlefield use.

John Brownings Self-loading Pistols
Concerning Pistols John Browning recieved patents in April of 1897 for 3 different types of self-loading actions. The designs were for a blowback, a locked recoil and a turn lock system. Patent #'s 580923, 580924, 580925. These patents paved the way for an international agreement with Fabrique Nationale (FN) to manufacture a blowback system thirty-two caliber pistol for all markets outside of the United States. This is not to imply that these firearms would not or could not be sold in the United States. Browning had agreements in place with Colt, Remington and Winchester for distribution of his designs within the United States.

Colt in fact released for sale to the United States civilian market a blowback twenty-eight caliber semi-automatic pistol 1900. Not quite one year later Colt accepted the rights to and did market, in the United States, a thirty-two caliber blowback pistol, with the understanding that it be priced to compete with revolvers of the period. (ed....This price issue would not have been a consideration if this deal involved government contracts)

The Military adopts a Self-loading long arm in 1918
Browning over the next several years provided several patented designs to Remington, FN and Colt, including the pistol that became the standard by which all are measured, the 1911 forty-five caliber automatic Colt pistol. Even that old military warhorse was proceded by a civilian version, the 1905 Colt automatic pistol in .45 caliber. In 1914 Remington began production of their model 24, a Browning patented 22 caliber semi-automatic rifle. (ed...a 22 semi-auto can hardly be considered a military arm) In 1917 Brownings previous research and developement of successfull civilian arms produced the Browning Automatic rifle that did indeed see military service in 1918. Both the 1911 and the BAR were progressive designs that were first produced for the civilian market both in the United States and abroad. The truth here is that gas-operated semi-automatic long arms were in the hands of the civilian population fully 12 years before the United States Military used a similar self-loading long gun in the last days of World War I.

John Moses Browning passed away in 1926, but not before leaving his mark on the world of civilian firearms. It is a tribute to Brownings design and craftmanship that that his self-loading firearms designs were so successfull that the military organizations of the world took these civilian firearms and modified them for the safety and security of troops on the battlefield. The end result is that virtually all of the smallarms firearms in use by the military and law enforcement today were not designed for that purpose, they are if fact originally arms designed for the civilian population.

This guy will be lucky if he doesn't end up in Jail

Round One
87 year old Leonard Gamage not only physically held his own in a 45 minute ordeal against a 20 year old intruder he came up on the winning end of the altercation. Gamage a self-admitted "old soldier" tossed the punk out of his house before retrieving one of the rifles he kept in a gun rack.

Round Two
The miscreant youth was not to be detered by the gun and attempted to re-enter the Gamage domicile. Even a butt stroke and a couple of warning shots from Gamages long arm was not enough to set the youngster on his way. Gamage was ultimately forced to shoot the youthful offender in the foot.

Round Three
The local sheriff arrived and there was high-fives all around for the sprite old codger. The Sheriff however was duty bound to take custody of the Gamage guns as Leonard did not have the appropriate permission slip to posess them. He assured the octagenarian that should he get the requesit paperwork he would help him get the family keepsakes back.

The Knockout Punch from the Blind side
Although Illinois legislature, after overriding a Governors veto, just enacted a new law that prohibits prosecution for firearms posession contrary to any LOCAL gun ban ordinances, Gamage could still run afoul of the states Firearms owners Indentification (FOID). At Governor Blagojevich's direction the State Patrol has been actively hunting down otherwise law abiding citizens who have made the agregious error of failing to renew their FOID cards. When the Patrol's computer search happens upon these luckless soles they pay them a visit. After ascertaining that the now illegal firearms are still domiciled at the residence they are confiscated and in some cases the owners are arrested for posession of illegal contraband.

Let's hope that neither the Governor nor any of his staff hear about this one or Mr Gamage may find himself spending the rest of his days in the Greybar Retirement Community for wayward old soldiers.

The Ten Count
Consider what this has to do with the license scheme that is illegally in place in Omaha Nebraska. Further consider what would happen to Mr. Gamage had he the equal misfortune to live in that fair city.

Many thanks to David Limbaugh for the heads up on this one.

Oh that I can be that fiesty at that age.

Do you care that TSA screeners are groping your Mothers, Wifes and Daughters breasts?

Recently there has been a rash of complaints that TSA agents are stepping over the line of professionalism and using their position of authority to unnecessarily intimidate and grope the breasts and other private areas of women passengers. They are being told to submit to the humiliation or be denied access to their flight. The supposed protocal requires screeners to verbally inform the passenger what they need to do before doing it and to use only the back of the hand when performing the procedure.

Certain security measures may be necessary to ensure the safety of the flying public. It goes beyond the pale however, when some of the TSA's own agents are coming forward and either confirming the illicet behavior or shedding light on instances that have not been publically reported yet.

In one of the sources cited for this dissertation one reader commented that;

"As someone who conducted pat-down searches on many, many people over my 15 years in law enforcement, I think I can safely speak for airport screeners when I say that it is no more desirable for the person doing the patting than it is for the pattee. Probing the armpits, crotches and chest area of strangers is not something to write home about or something that professionals get giddy about, sharing stories in the bar after work like excited teenagers. " --Mark Arsenault

Having previously had a career in Law Enforcement I truely understand what Mark is saying. At that time Officers had not yet started wearing the surgical gloves that are used in just about all cases of search in today's time. It was not something to write home about or get giddy over. It was and in some cases still is, even with gloves, a dangerous proposition. Further it was not a selective process. Persons were only searched incident to an arrest or strictly according to the "Terry Frisk" guidelines. Women were not singled out for public humiliation because they had a great looking rack. The point of contention I have with what Mark said is the use of the word professional. Knowing the recruitment process, training requirements and pay scale I would hardly call many of todays TSA agents professional. Certainly not after the deplorable acts some of the professional agents are reporting.

In a report on WJLA Channel 7 News last night, unidentified screeners at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport said women were being selected for private screening based on breast size and strip-searched. The searches were required after screeners kicked equipment to set off alarms.

"In a sense, they were being raped," one TSA screener said. Strip searches were being conducted in a stairwell, WJLA reported, but were moved to a supervisor's private office where the activities were recorded on a hidden camera.

If this is demonstration of the high standards of professionalism required by TSA screeners I rest my case. There are certainly some professional screeners employed by the TSA and they are speaking out about the abuses;

TSA Employee: "They actually had the passenger remove the clothing that covered the sensitive area and perform a duck walk to see if something would fall out."

TSA Employee: I couldn't believe it! I said is that a camera up there? And they said yeah.

Andrea McCarren: Do you think the women being strip searched had any idea they were being videotaped? TSA Employee: Absolutely not

Does everyone understand what this says? It means that women among other degrading acts were , in order to be allowed to board their flights, forced to remove their panties and duck walk to prove that they had nothing hidden in her vaginas. Originally, it seems that these degradations were performed in a public stairwell. After complaints the indecency was relocated to a managers office where the "necessary searches" were taped and monitored by closed circuit video equipment. (ed... for use in training future TSA agents or for later getting giddy about over a beer I'm sure)

"In a sense, they were being raped," one TSA screener said.
Strip searches were being conducted in a stairwell, WJLA reported, but were moved to a supervisor's private office where the activities were recorded on a hidden camera.

It is not limited to the everyday common citizen that travels by air either;

When former Rep. Helen Chenoweth, Idaho Republican, was flagged as a high-risk passenger with a one-way ticket from Boise, Idaho, to Reno, Nev., she refused to be patted down and was forced to drive to her destination.

I believe that no citizen is or should be above the law, but certainly upon identification there are some people that do not need to be subjected to being groped and/or humiliated in public. I say that not as an endorsement of special priviledges for elected officials, but as a point of common sense. In this particular case Ms. Chenoweth, a Congressional Representitive has taken an oath the uphold the constitution and has been nothing but a stalwart American citizen. In the time it took to deal with someone of Representitive Chenoweths character how many real trouble makers could has proceeded unencumbered?

"That area is private," Mrs. Chenoweth told KBCI-TV, the Boise NBC affiliate. "We have programs teaching children that these areas are private and yet we have our government patting us down. There's something wrong with that. To be patted down like that was just way over the edge and that's why I chose to drive and I will drive from now on," she said.

In another disturbing incident a woman wearing a tank top sans bra was revolted at the idea of being fondled and refused to have her breasts groped. inatead she raised her shirt to show that she was not hiding anything and was subsequently denied boarding.

"They were yelling the same thing: 'If you don't let her continue the search — and that entails feeling your breasts — you will not board your airplane home to San Diego.' "

"I was shaking, I was sobbing. I couldn't believe that this was happening to me. It was surreal. It was like out of a movie, with these guys yelling at me, telling me that, yes, she has to feel my breasts or I'm not getting on my airplane," Kingsford said. They took her to a private area to continue the search, but she said she was still uncomfortable with them touching her breasts so she tugged down her shirt to show them that she wasn't hiding anything."And then they said, 'That's it. We're not going to complete the search and you're not boarding your plane,'" Kingsford said. "They escorted us out and said they didn't care how we got home, it wasn't their problem."

Ms. Kingsford was travelling with a 3 month old son and her fiancce. They were forced to wait several hours for the airline, as required, to retrieve their luggage before returning home in a rental car. The luggage was never retrieved and Ms. Kingsford was forced to take the 15 hour drive procuring replacement infant necessities along the way. If this does not border on child abuse by the esteemed agents of the TSA then nothing does. What reason would a TSA agent have for still wanting to grope a "tanktop wearing obviously braless female"? Especially after she raised her top to physically show them that she did not have contraband hidden under her breasts.

"I was wearing a pretty form-fitting tank top. There's nothing really to be hiding. You could see my figure. I didn't have any packs. She had patted down my torso. She had completed the torso pat down and wanded me with a security wand but some reason she said she wanted to see my breasts," Kingsford said. In a phone interview, Ava told me that two female airport screeners had taken her to a back room to touch her breasts. To avoid being touched, Ava pulled down her tank top and bra-less said: "See, I'm not hiding anything." But, incredibly, the screener replied: "That's it. You just flashed us and you're not boarding your plane."

These are not just isolated incidents either, KYW-TV in Philadelphia reports that at least 3 women from that area have come forward with similar stories. It is very troubling when supposedly professional individuals in the employ of the people they are violating are allowed to engage in the deplorable actions that are being reported in the media. Common sense, decency and reasoning have gone completely out the window. TSA agents are government employees. Servants of the people. That they are either so poorly trained or are being told to conduct themselves in this manner by supervisory personel is an affront to the very foundations that this country was founded on.

Woman #3: "I was like, whoah! You can't do that and the supervisor who I had been objecting to was standing right there and he said yes, we can."

TSA Employee: "It's very upsetting to see this happen and there are a lot of screeners that took his job thinking that they could do something good and many of them have quit and many of them are talking about quitting now."

The TSA proudly states that of the millions of air travelers in this country they only receive a dozen or so complaints a week from passengers (mostly women) that feel the agents have crossed the line. That does not mean that there are only 12 a week, it simply means that like rape the problem is so under whelmingly reported that one can only imagine how wide spread the abuse is. That this is a game or some sadistic pleasure on the part of the agents is clearly demonstrated in the following statement heard by one passenger that was subjected to the degradation;

Jamie Sibulkin told the Boston Globe she requested that her search before a flight from Boston to Dallas be performed by a woman, who joked to the male screener he was "missing out."

Friday, December 03, 2004

Another question to ponder

Is the appointment of Governor Johanns a four or at least an eight year tenure?

Eight years you say? Yes sure and why not?

Obviously Hillary wouldn't keep Mike Johanns on, but Chuck Hagel would be obligated too, and we all know, at least here in Nebraska that the left leaning RINO is planning on making a bid for the White house in 08.

Even when he was heading the Campaign for the re-election of George Bush, Hagel was publically dissing the President and distancing himself from his policies. Kind of funny to see Hagel scurrying to the left in an effort to shore up a base of support from which to pander votes for the White House, while on the left Hillary is slithering to the right for the same reasons.

That is not to say that I disagree with everything Hagel is about. It is no big secret that I am not impressed with Hagel as a republican and I just cannot see how Hagel could accept the position to head Mr. Bush's campaign in Nebraska then run all over the state telling everybody how wrong he thought he was.

When you pledge to support someone you do it with everything at your disposal, you do not stab the President in the back while heading his re-election committee. Not only that, you do not during the Republican Convention co-sponsor a dinner across town for his Democratic opponent.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Latest addition to the Blogroll

I have just added an other link to the blogroll that has become a part of my daily reading. I have been looking at Triggerfinger for some time and I find his analysis of firearms issues on the mark. Triggerfinger not only gives his perspective but backs it up with links for sceptical readers to read for themselves and make up their own minds.

Mr Johanns goes to Washington

Todays announcement that President Bush has nominated Nebraska Governor to be Secretary of Agriculture has put the limelight on the Cornhusker State. Public opinion around the state late this afternoon has been favorable from all quarters. The most interesting aspect of this whole thing is the upevil the appointment is causing within the state political parties.

If Johanns is confirmed, current Lt. Governor Dave Heineman will become the next governor. Heineman has stated that he is philisophically in agreement with Johanns and that Nebraskans should not expect much in the way of change. He gas even alluded to keeping most if not all personel in the key positions they now hold.

While this is encouraging to firearms owners in general it remains to be seen if Heineman will make the same pledge that outgoing Governor Johanns has made; "Put a statewide concealed carry bill on my desk and I will sign it."

This is an ongoing interest to a lot of Nebraskans and a question that needs to be asked of our apparent new Governor.

There is much more fallout concerning this appointment. Johanns was expected to run a senatorial campaign against Democrat Ben Nelson in 2006. If Johanns is confirmed (ed.. there is no reason to doubt that he won't) the republicans are scrambling for a suitable candidate to run against Nelson. Former Nebraska Huskers football Coach, and now Representive Tom Osbourne has expressed a desire to reside in the Governors mansion. Both Heineman, who has always made it clear that he wanted to be governor, and Attorney General Jon Bruning have both stated that they would not seek the governorship if Osbourne chose to run.

There are many more topics of fallout making the rounds of Nebraska in these first hours after the announcemant and only time will tell how it all shakes out.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

I have been so remiss in not telling you about the Shooter's Carnival

I cannot believe that I have not blogged about this before. For any of my readers that has a an interest in firearms there is a great site that is contributed to by many knowledgeable bloggers. The articles are catagorized according to subject and there is a lot of very good information to be found at The Shooter's Carnival.

Some of the catogories include advice and information for the neophyte shooter, doing things on a budget and safety to name a few. The gun and product review catagory is written by people that aquired the products described in their articles and their critique is made without the benefit of compensation as the writers of our favorite gunrags are. These reviews are the honest reflections of people that actually use these guns and products.

Please give it a look-see and if you like it (ed... I'm sure you will) bookmark it. And now for the shameless plug; Yes you will also find at least one submission in my name as well.

Nebraska Statute 28-1202 is vague and should be repealed pursuant to the Due Process Clause

The Void-for-Fairness Doctrine bars the prosecution of an individual for violating a statue if the statute is written in terms so vague that persons of common intelligence must guess at the meaning of the law and those persons opinions vary as to how it is applied . Section 28-1202 of Nebraska Statutes fits that criteria and needs to be declared unconstitutional in that it is unnecessarily vague and requires a person of common intelligence to guess at it's meaning at risk of not necessarily life, but most certainly liberty and property.

I have addressed this statute in the past as also being unconstitutional given the fact that the people, in the form of the State Constitution, have never given power to the legislature to regulate weapons. Under the Due Process Clause laws, the punishment of which could result in the loss of life, liberty or property must not be written so ambiguously that There have been numerous court decision that ave held that;

Before criminal liability may be imposed for violation of any penal law, due process requires "fair warning . . . Of what the law intends."

Statute 28-1202 states that; "any person who carries a weapon ....Concealed.... Commits the crime of carrying a concealed weapon. This is plain enough and is specific in that if a person is carrying a concealed weapon that person is committing a crime. I have no argument with that conclusions. (ed... Other than my previous contention that the statute is unconstitutional anyway) My point being that the statement is or should be an understandable by anyone that reads it. Where it gets mucked up is the part that says; except as provided in subsection (2) of this section....

Section (2) reads as follows;

It shall be an affirmative defense that the defendant was engaged in any lawful business, calling, or employment at the time he or she was carrying any weapon or weapons and the circumstances in which such person was placed at the time were such as to justify a prudent person in carrying the weapon or weapons for the defense of his or her person, property, or family.

To better understand that section I consulted a Webster a dictionary which is accepted and quoted by the SCOTUS).

Affirmative - is an adjective asserting the fact that it is so : POSITIVE. It is also a describe as noun asserting an affirmation or accent.

This word gives the impression of being right or that it is proper. It says YES.

Defense - noun 1: the act of defending : resistance against attack 2: means, method, or capability of defending 3: an argument in support 4: the answer made by the defendant in a legal action 5: a defending party, group, team.

From this word we can believe that the positive thing is defended.

Defendant - noun a person required to make answer in a legal action or suit.

In answering the legal action a person would rightfully believe that their actions are condoned and defendable.

Lawful - an adjective that states permitted by law 2: RIGHTFUL

How much more plain can that be, the person is conducting themselves in a lawful manner and not engaged in criminal activity.

Business - described as a noun is an 1: OCCUPATION also : TASK, MISSION 2: a commercial or industrial enterprise : also TRADE 3: AFFAIR, MATTER 4: personal concern.

By definition business is much more than a job, if a person is pursuing a daily routine they are said to be "going about their business".

Calling - is a noun that defines 1: a strong inner impulse toward a particular course of action 2: the activity in which one customarily engages as an occupation.

So someone gets the urge for a Big Mac and heads out for the nearest McDonald's, that would be a strong impulse toward a course of action.

Employment - noun 1: OCCUPATION, ACTIVITY 2: the act of employing : the condition of being employed.

Obviously this means the job a person engages in either working for someone else or in the capacity of being self-employed.

Circumstance - noun 1: a fact or event that must be considered along with another fact or event 2: surrounding conditions 3: CHANCE, FATE 4: situation with regard to wealth 5: CEREMONY

This is the happenings going on or expected to be going on that an individual does not have direct control over.

Justify - verb 1: to prove to be just, right, or reasonable 2: to pronounce free from guilt or blame.

This specifically tells a person that, beyond a shadow of a doubt, what they are doing is right.

Prudent - adjective 1: shrewd in the management of practical affairs 2: CAUTIOUS, DISCREET 3: PROVIDENT, FRUGAL syn. Judicious, foresighted, sensible, sane.

People provide themselves with spare tires, first aid kits and fire extinguishers, why wouldn't a prudent person possess a firearm?

Person - noun 1: a human being : INDIVIDUAL

Self explanatory I would think.

Reading subsection (2) average people can and do infer that they can lawfully carry a concealed weapon without fear of prosecution. As defined in this section it can be read as they have a POSITIVE ARGUMENT IN SUPPORT of carrying a concealed weapon provided they are RIGHTFULLY engaged in a TASK or INNER IMPULSE TOWARD A PARTICULAR COURSE and given to CHANCE or FATE they are FREE FROM GUILT if they are a CAUTIOUS INDIVIDUAL.

Now that is certainly a mouthful but it illustrates the point, a person of average intelligence can read that and believe that yes they may be made to answer in court for their actions, but it is perfectly legal, without penalty, to carry a concealed weapon. The average person that reads that exception can and do have the belief that if they are a "prudent person" all they have to do is explain such to a police officer and be free to go on their way. Some understand it to mean more than that and realize that they may be charged, but again because they have good reason to go armed the charge will be dismissed by the prosecutor or judge, all they have to do is explain their actions as a prudent person.

The problem with that is that it is not that simple in practice. Throughout the history of 28-1202 it has been selectively applied by different police officers, prosecutors and judges in different parts of the state. The person is in reality subject to the ambiguity of the individual officer, prosecutor and or judge. At any point during contact with anyone of these officials the case may be dropped or prosecuted at the discrestion of the officer, prosecutor or judge. Too many times however, it is a matter of politics rather than the rule of law. Many of these public officials are rabidly anti-gun and in their minds there is no reason that would justify any person, prudent or not, to carry a firearm concealed or not. In these regards 28-1202 does not either standing alone or as construed by the courts, made it reasonably clear at the time of the charged conduct that the conduct was criminal.

28-1202 is not sufficiently defined to provide a person of ordinary intelligence with a clear understanding of it's meaning as guaranteed by Due process. In reading 28-1202 Nebraskans, under peril of liberty and/or property, are required to guess at whether the meaning of the law. They have no way of knowing whether this officer will let them pass or arrest them, or whether this judge or that judge will find them guilty or innocent.

Many that read 28-1202 are confused as to it's meaning. Yes they consider themselves prudent persons and they have a compelling reason, (carrying large sums of money, documented threats etc...) but they are not sure if they can legally carrying a firearm without fear of incarceration themselves. This is specifically the crux that makes this law further unconstitutional. Several U.S. Supreme decision have made it plain that;

The first criterion of the void-for-vagueness doctrine requires a criminal statute to be sufficiently defined so it provides persons of ordinary intelligence adequate notice of proscribed conduct. Due process guarantees this adequate notice of proscribed conduct so that ordinary persons are [p. 450] not required to guess at a law's meaning but, rather, can know what conduct is forbidden and act accordingly. "No one may be required at peril of life, liberty or property to speculate as to the meaning of penal statutes. All are entitled to be informed as to what the State commands or forbids." Lanzetta, 306 U.S. at 453, 59 S.Ct. at 619, 83 L.Ed. at 890.

It has been long settled that a state cannot prosecute a person based on a statute that can not be clearly understood. For persons that feel compelled to go armed as addressed in 28-1202 they must guess at whether it is legal or not at the risk of a conviction that could result in the loss of liberty (jail time) or property (The firearm confiscated and/or monetary fines).

It is settled that the fair-warning requirement embodied in the Due Process Clause prohibits the States from holding an individual "criminally responsible for conduct which he could not reasonably understand to be proscribed." United States v. Harriss, 347 U.S. 612, 617, 74 S.Ct. 808, 812, 98 L.Ed. 989 (1954);

28-1202 can not be clearly understood by every person of ordinary intelligence;

This principle is founded on two policies that have long been part of our tradition. First, 'a fair warning should be given to the world in language that the common world will understand, of what the law intends to do if a certain line is passed. To make the warning fair, so fair as possible the line should be clear.' McBoyle v. United States, 283 U.S. 25, 27, 51 S.Ct. 340, 341, 75 L.Ed. 816 (1931) (Holmes, J.). [n. 15] See also United States v. Cardiff, 344 U.S. 174, 73 S.Ct. 189, 97 L.Ed.

As written 28-1202 requires the courts determine criminal activity and not the state. Because of the ambiguity of 28-1202 the same court can, on one hand convict a person for carrying a concealed weapon and, at another time dismiss a concealed carry charge against another individual who was found to be carrying for virtually the same reasons. This is a prime example of the court arbitrarily and ambiguously DEFINING criminal activity. Here is what has been said about that;

Second, because of the seriousness of criminal penalties, and because criminal punishment usually represents the moral condemnation of the community, legislatures and not courts should define criminal activity. This policy embodies 'the instinctive distastes against men languishing in prison unless the lawmaker has clearly said they should.' H. Friendly Mr. Justice Frankfurter and the Reading of Statutes, in Benchmarks 196, 209 (1967).

As a final note, if all of the courts in Nebraska were fair and honest, there should never be a single otherwise law abiding citizen prosecuted under 28-1202. If a person is a responsible member of society then they are prudent and justified in their decision to go armed. Additionally the court has said that, if there is ambiguity, doubts as to an affirmative defense, justification and/or prudence ARE resolved in favor of the defendant.

Thus, where there is ambiguity in a criminal statute, doubts are resolved in favor of the defendant. United States v. Gradwell, 243 U.S. 476, 485, 37 S.Ct. 407 411, 61 L.Ed. 857 (1917)

There should be no doubt that 28-1202 is a poorly written law and needs to be declared unconstitutional and or repealed.