Independent Country

James Leroy Wilson's blog

Saturday, August 06, 2016

The 20 reasons I would have wished to be born a girl

20. To sing this on Karaoke night.




19. To sing this on Karaoke night:





18. To sing this on Karaoke night:





17, To sing this on Karaoke night:





16. To sing this on Karaoke night:






15  To sing this on Karaoke night





14. To sing this on Karaoke night

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13. To sing this on Karaoke night.




12. To sing this on Karaoke night.





11. To sing this on Karaoke night:




10. To sing this on Karaokke night:






9. To sing this on Karoake night:






8. To sing this this on karoake night:





7. To sing this on /Karoake night:





6. To sing this on Karaoke night:






5. To sing this on Karaoke night:



4. To sing this on Karaoke night:




3. To sing this on Karaijke night:




2. To sing this on Kaaoake night: (because the only people I've know who can sing it are women)




1. To sing this at Kaaoke night:





That's it. That's the list.

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

When bipartisanship ended

In a post on social media, I wrote:
"Our leaders used to put nation over party!" Yes, back when they sent 100,000 draft slaves to their deaths in east Asia. Good times!
To be fair, bipartsanship persevered after the draft ended and there was relative peace. Reagan's tax cuts, the tax reform of 1986, and the Gramm-Rudman deficit reduction plan all passed with Democratic input and at least some support, because it had control of at least one chamber of Congress all through Reagan's 8-year term.

The first George Bush, H.W. never had even one chamber in his favor. Bipartisanship in this era existed to the degree he agreed with or was willing to compromise with Democrats.

The turning point was the 1994 election, in which Republicans gained control of Congress in a voter repudiation of the Democratic agenda of the time. There was little, if any, bipartisanship through the 90's even as the economy chugged along and budget deficits turned into surpluses
.
Bipartisanship returned to some degree during the second Bush, W. After 9/11, he could push through any "security" measure or war with Democratic assent and worked with Democrats on their agenda for greater federal control of education and expansion of Medicare.

But it ended a second time in 2010, after Obama's first two years in office. What was the main issue? Obamacare.

So let's review. When did bipartisanship stop?

With Hillarycare.
 
And then with Obamacare.

That is, government control of healthcare.

And always lurking in the background is gun control. If Democrats had a House majority and a filibuster-proof Senate majority, gun control would get passed. So we have, at the root of the partisan divide: 

Government control of healthcare.

Government control of our means of self-defense.

Government control of your right to life. Government deciding if you can exist.

Who would surrender the right to life to an agency that says "We're compassionate. Trust us?"

Conservatives don't.

They think this is evil, and evil isn't entitled to a compromise. 

I'm not sure if Republican voters consciously think this way, but it's my theory of why they hate all things Democrat. The problem isn't that Democrats want to run your life, it's that they want to decide if you should live.

I understand that instinct, even though Republicans have their own anti-liberty agenda of controlling our bodies through prohibitions and surveillance. And I oppose that as well.

I wonder if Republicanism can be summarized as, 'You can take away our freedom, but you can't take away our lives!"

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Robin Williams' real disease, for those who still don't know

Near the end of a May 17 Joe Rogan podcast, Bobcat Goldthwaite talked about the death of his best friend Robin Williams. He felt it was important to mention it, nearly two years after the autopsy results were announced, because the news hadn't sunk in.

Robin Williams didn't commit suicide because of Depression. Not because he faced a bleak future with Parkinson's (which was an incorrect diagnosis). Not because of marital problems; there weren't. Not because of financial difficulties, of which there were none. As to Robin having spoken of suicide in the past, Bobcast said the question should be: When do comedians NOT talk about suicide?

Bobcat said the autopsy revealed that Williams had Lewy Body Dementia, and that was concsistent with his experience that on most days Robin was most often misperceiving reality. There was no speculation on the podcast as to what was going on in Robin's mind at the time of the suicide, but Bobcat is certain it wouldn't have happened without Lewy Body Dementia. 

I recall in the immediate wake of Robin's death, the conclusion was that he must have had Depression, with the undertone of why else could he have committed suicide? There were pleas to those who were contemplating it to get help RIGHT NOW with hotlines promoted on tv. Perhaps that was helpful to some people, so this immediate reaction may have been a good thing. There's no shame in Depression.

But it's unfair to Robin, and to the truth, if the facts aren't known. Because then there weren't be awareness of  Lewy Body Dementia..

So I'm posting this in case some readers don't know the facts.

Monday, August 01, 2016

How does the U.S. compare?

(Adapted from a Facebook post of August 1, 2015)

Russell Wilson and J.J. Watt are "football players." That's the general profession they've chosen. Both are great, in their own way. And you can decide who's "better" by deciding which one you'd pick first if you were building a team.
 
But the comparison ends there. The players are so different in size, abilities, and role that you can't criticize one for not doing, or not being able to do, what the other does.

The United States and Denmark are countries. That's how history unfolded. You can decide which country is "better" by  deciding which one you'd rather live in (if indeed it'll let you in), but the comparisons end there. Judging them by what their governments will do or can do, however, is a different story.

I looked up lists of country populations and area. Because China and India each have approximately a billion more people, I don't see how they can compare to the U.S. A different tier.

It seems the only countries in the same tier as the U.S. are Indonesia, Brazil, and Russia. Even then there are vast differences.

Countries smaller in area and/or population will generally be less diverse ethnically and won't have people separated by vast wilderness. There's greater cohesion making them easier to "govern."  

Those who want to compare the United States as a whole to smaller, more homogeneous European countries would be better off comparing some states to some countries of similar area and size. That the country as a whole falls behind in some statistics shouldn't be that surprising. It's too large to "govern."

Lew Rockwell, in a speech years ago, suggested a world of 30,000 city-states.

At least then, we might be able to make comparisons.


Sunday, July 31, 2016

Not enough evidence!

How can you beat the system? In a now-old routine, Doug Stanhope says take jury duty and say "Not guilty!" (Not Safe for Work)




Just recently, I came across an episode of  Doug;s podcast from a couple of years ago (I couldn't locate the specific episode) where he talks with a lawyer who had served as a prosecutor, then defense attorney, and is now a prosecutor again. This guest said that defending those accused of victimless crimes seems like the honorable course, but you don't have any leverage. One must change the system from the inside, where prosecutors can recommend the lightest sentences or deferral programs for "criminals" who don't belong in prison.

It's a nice thought. It's also a fantasy for more than a handful of prosecutors to ever behave that way. But if there were prosecutors who like him were willing to be lenient, why can't they go further?

I was reminded of Emailgate. After the FBI investigated Hillary Clinton about her email server, the Director's conclusion was that there wasn't enough evidence to persuade a jury. The Attorney General went along with his assessment and chargers were not filed.

Why can't prosecutors who want to change the system act like that when dealing with victimless crime? Why can't they refuse to prosecute in the same spirit Stanhope would ask jurors to say "Not guilty!"

Video and audio evidence of a pound of cocaine exchanged for a wad of cash? Not enough evidence!

Semen stains and wallet left at a brothel? Not enough evidence!

An openly running brothel? Not enough evidence!

The host of unlicensed poker games admits it? Not enough evidence?

Prosecutors who refuse to enforce unjust laws wouldn't be shirking their duty, they'd be preserving justice. Which is their job.  


Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Why must black celebrities speak out?

The first episode of OJ: Made in America chronicled O.J. Simpson's rise to celebrity and contrasted his non-controversial persona to that of other star black athletes of the era. Although there were indications of a self-obsession associated with sociopathy, which might explain his later criminal conduct, I had no complaints with Simpson's decisions at the time.  

If he had an obligation to speak out for social change, then Joe Namath had no more and no less of an obligation.

Likewise, if Michael Jordan had, or has, an obligation to speak out for social change, Larry Bird has no more or no less an obligation.

How is it NOT racist to hold black athletes to a higher standard?

The obligation DOESN'T EXIST. Not for anyone of prominence, of whatever race or background. Doing what you love to do, and not hurting anybody else while you do it, means you're helping society.

It's unreasonable to demand anything more from anyone.

In any case, if a celebrity "speaks out" for anything other than more liberty, what they really are demanding is "social change" for the worse.

It's better if they stay silent.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

What is and isn't a victimless crime

I know that whenever I mention "victimless crimes" some people will question it.

"But drug addiction produces victims!"

"But prostitution produces victims!"

"But markets create victims!"

"But gambling creates victims!"

Such complaints confuse the issue. Broken agreements create victims. The victim of child neglect isn't the victim of a parent's substance abuse, but of neglect; parents doing legal things can also neglect their children. A gambling addiction can destroy families, but so can other forms of financial mismanagement.

So who is a victim?

Someone with objective, measureable damages as a result from the direct actions of someone else:
  • You lost money through fraud? That loss can be counted.
  • You were physically injured? That can be diagnosed.
  • Your property was vandalized? That can be seen.
  • Something was stolen? That can be investigated.  
But your broken heart? Lost trust? Disappointment? Wasted time? Hurt feelings? Self-destruction? 

Those are huge parts of life. That doesn't mean they should be a part of the law. Because to legislate their prevention requires the threat of inflicting measurable damages on people who themselves aren't inflicting measurable damages. When you punish the immeasurable, the law becomes arbitrary. And when law's arbitrary, there's no freedom. Where there's no freedom, there's no happiness.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Players should celebrate Nick Wright and Joy Taylor

I listen to sports talk radio whenever I can. Stories about sports are my escape.and favorite conversation topic.

And I was very, very impressed with the original thoughts from Nick Wright and Joy Thomas, who guest-hosted The Herd for at least the past two days.

Among the gems I heard in a limited amount of time, all paraphrased:

Nick: "I'm not a fan of slippery slope arguments. 'It could lead to something,' is a bad argument."

Nick: "I don't want my kids celebrating after making a play. But I don't want them getting cortisone shots either. Pro athletes and children are different."

Joy: "Just because pro sports can be watched by kids, doesn't mean they should be catered to them. Lots of things can be seen by kids without being for kids."

(I'm open to correction if I misinterpreted their points.)

I was impressed with their on-air compatibility and insights. I hope to see and or hear a lot more of them.


  

   


Degree of Certainty: Why Hillary Wins

Donald Trump has picked Mike Pence as his running mate. While I most likely disagree with Pence on most things, he might be a relatively capable Oval Office sitter if Trump wins but resigns in a year to become a judge on America's Got Talent

But that won't happen. Whatever Pence's qualifications may be, the ticket as a whole has a glaring omission: nobody with a Harvard or Yale degree.

That means it will lose. It might have lost anyway; Hillary Clinton Yale law degree, uh, trumps Trump's Penn bachelor's degree. But perhaps getting a Harvard or Yale running mate could have evened things up.

Here are the universities that the Presidential and Vice Presidential nominees since 1980 attended. If two schools are listed, the first is the undergraduate school. The Democrat is on the left, the Republican on the right. The winning ticket is in italicData from before 2004 and earlier is copied from this 2008 blog post.

2016 (likely): Wellesley, Yale (law) v. Pennsylvania
vp:     ???  v. Hanover, Indiana U. (law)
2012: Columbia, Harvard (Law) v. Brigham Young, Harvard (Law, MBA)
vp: Delaware, Syracuse (Law) v. Miami (OH)
2008: Columbia, Harvard (Law) v. Naval Academy
vp: Delaware, Syracuse (Law) v. Idaho
2004: Yale, Boston College(law) v. Yale, Harvard(MBA)
vp: NC St., North Carolina v. Wyoming
2000: Harvard v. YaleHarvard(MBA)
vp: Yale v. Wyoming
1996: Georgetown, Yale (law) v. Kansas
vp: Harvard vs. Occidental
1992: Georgetown, Yale (law) v. Yale
vp: Harvard vs. DePauw, Indiana (law)
1988: Swarthmore, Harvard (law) v. Yale
vp: Texas v DePauw, Indiana U (law)
1984: Minnesota v. Eureka
vp: Marymount Manhattan, Fordham (law) vs. Yale
1980: Naval Academy v. Eureka
VP: Minnesota v. Yale

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Why did they pursue D.B. Cooper?

The FBI will no longer look for D.B. Cooper.

In Cooper's 1971 hijacking of a Boeing 727,  no one was hurt, passengers weren't traumatized because they weren't even made aware the plane was hijacked, and the sum stolen was only $200,000.

That raises the question: Why did the FBI spend so much time and money pursuing him in the first place? 

The subject can quickly turn, in online comments sections, to general FBI incompetence. And its ethics, considering Director James Comey's recommendation against pressing charges against Hillary Clinton.

I think that misses the point.

Normally, I oppose the FBI. It shouldn't exist.

But of its few Constitutionally-legitimate functions, investigating a hijacking-for-ransom on an interstate flight is one.

And if this investigation shouldn't have been aggressively pursued, why should any?

If we let the criminal get away with it, wouldn't he be encouraged to commit the same crime again? Or use his criminal profits to fund other criminal schemes?

The purpose of capturing criminals and removing them from society is so they won't commit crimes again.

And as commenter Steven Sizemore notes:
Even so, there's a lot of value in the FBI's deep investigation; to deter others if nothing else. Deterrent came from the public knowing the FBI was going to look under every stone, and keep looking. Maybe they came up empty on this one, but I warrant the high profile investigation deterred other attempts all the same!
Most of the laws we live under are unjust and unnecessary. But there is some comfort for me in knowing that if you commit a real crime, like issue bomb threat in order to steal, they will come after you.

Even if they don't get you, you pay a price. As I've noted on social media:
Q: If he survived, what's the only thing worse than being D.B. Cooper and not being able to tell anyone?
A: Prison.
Was it worth it?

Monday, July 11, 2016

Just laws, cop abuse, and the arrogance of Eric Garcetti

The 2006 Duke Lacrosse case featured:
  • An investigation of a  real crime. Unlike, say, the phony "crimes" like gun or drug possession, rape has an actual victim 
  • White men, athletes at an elite university, as suspects. Maybe they weren't all rich, but they were privileged with access to  competent legal counsel.
Even after evidence indicated the accused were innocent, the police and prosecutor pursued the case.

If innocent Duke athletes aren't safe from The State, nobody is. Botched prosecutions and wrongful convictions are commonplace even when the laws, such as  laws against rape, murder, and robbery, are just and necessary.

So what happens when they're not? Increasing the minimum wage is a case in point. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, in a Freakonomics interview, said it will lead to increased "net economic activity" in his city.

That's a dubious proposition at best, but the more important question is...

Who does Eric Garcetti think he is think he is to make it illegal for people to take jobs at wages they are willing to accept?

Garcetti admits there will be some displacement with a minimum wage hike, but somehow thinks it's worth it. What will happen to the jobless?

They'll likely get public assistance of various kinds. But also, the circumstances will encourage them to earn money in the unlicensed, untaxed shadow economy.

Even if the goods and services they provide aren't illegal in themselves, they're made illegal by the lack of paperwork and taxes.

And that can lead to nosy neighbors calling the police, or police spotting and inquiring into "suspicious" activity themselves. Arrests will be made, convictions plea-bargained, and honest peaceful people will have misdemeanors or even felonies on their record.

In addition, some of that police contact will get out of hand. Sometimes police will panic or become abusive. It's statistically likely the victims will disproportionately be racial minorities.

And when an incident becomes a national headline, we'll again wonder how we can "reform" police departments so they'll be less racist in practice. No doubt Eric Garcetti will have something reasonable and "compassionate" to say.

But it's the Garcettis of the world who are the fundamental problem. Don't pile on victimless laws on top of just laws and then be shocked when minorities bear the brunt.



Just laws, cop abuse, and the arroagance of Eric Garcetti

The 2006 Duke Lacrosse case featured:
  • An investigation of a  real crime. Unlike, say, the phony "crimes" like gun or drug possession, rape has an actual victim 
  • White men, athletes at an elite university, as suspects. Maybe they weren't all rich, but they were privileged with access to  competent legal counsel.
Even after evidence indicated the accused were innocent, the police and prosecutor pursued the case.

If innocent Duke athletes aren't safe from The State, nobody is. Botched prosecutions and wrongful convictions are commonplace even when the laws, such as  laws against rape, murder, and robbery, are just and necessary.

So what happens when they're not? Increasing the minimum wage is a case in point. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, in a Freakonomics interview, said it will lead to increased "net economic activity" in his city.

That's a dubious proposition at best, but the more important question is...

Who does Eric Garcetti think he is think he is to make it illegal for people to take jobs at wages they are willing to accept?

Garcetti admits there will be some displacement with a minimum wage hike, but somehow thinks it's worth it. What will happen to the jobless?

They'll likely get public assistance of various kinds. But also, the circumstances will encourage people to earn money in the unlicensed, untaxed shadow economy.

Even if the goods and services they provide aren't illegal in themselves, they're made illegal by the lack of paperwork and taxes.

And that can lead to nosy neighbors calling the police, or police spotting and inquiring into "suspicious" activity themselves.

Some of that police contact will get out of hand, and police may panic or become abusive. It's statistically likely the victims will disproportionately be racial minorities.

And when an incident becomes a national headline, we'll again wonder how we can "reform" police departments so they'll be less racist in practice. No doubt Eric Garcetti will have something reasonable and "compassionate" to say.

But it's the Garcettis of the world who are the fundamental problem. Don't pile on victimless laws on top of just laws and then be shocked when minorities bear the brunt.



Friday, July 08, 2016

Law abuse precedes cop abuse

You want to reduce police shootings of black men, and prevent any possible retaliation? 

Get rid of your bs victimless crime laws. Those laws are  abusive and so their enforcers will be abusive.

So...

Stop harassing people for selling stuff on the street without a license.

Stop endangering lives on the road to enforce traffic and vehicle laws that do nothing but raise revenue for The State.

Get rid of the drug laws. and gun laws. They were enacted in the first place with racist intent. Using a drug or possessing a firearm does not victimize anybody else.

And get rid of the Drug War-induced  asset forfeiture laws in which innocent people see their cash, cars, or even homes taken from them without so much as being charged with a crime.

As it stands now, the police are REWARDED for harassing people, and they'll racially profile NOT because blacks are more likely to be criminals, but because they're more likely to be poor and have fewer resources to fight back with competent legal counsel. 

If we repeal victimless, abusive laws, the police will have fewer incentives to be abusive.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Do we want county government?

"A former Gage County, Nebraska, prosecutor decided against running DNA tests in 1989 to help resolve unanswered questions in the cold-case killing of a Beatrice grandmother" in part because "the $350 lab fees were deemed too expensive."

This was years after the real killer was ruled out because of "a mistake on a blood test."

Now the county has to pay $28 million in compensation to the "Beatrice Six" who were wrongfully convicted of the crime. That's bigger than the county budget, and "amount to nearly $1,300 for each of the county’s roughly 21,900 residents."

That sounds like a small county, but it's the 14th most populous of Nebraska's 93 counties. More than two-thirds of them are under 10,000; several are under 1,000.

Which means particularly serious crimes like murder almost never happen in most of them. Police and prosecutors, with no previous experience to draw on, may botch a murder case even when they are doing their earnest best.

This is probably true in most rural counties across America. Some states have their own statewide bureaus of investigation that can dispatch pros to investigate major crimes, and I think I'd recommend that all states have one.

I favor small, decentralized government. But many counties in many states are too small to have the resources or professional competence to conduct their most important duty - investigate violent crime and prosecute offenders.

In any case, I feel for the people of Gage County, facing a bill today to pay for mistakes public officials made three decades ago.

As a citizen of Nebraska, I believe the Beatrice Six deserve the compensation they were awarded. I do not believe I should be on the hook as a taxpayer for it. But neither should the innocent taxpayers of Gage County.

Of the unfair options, I'd rather all the taxpayers of Nebraska share the burden of this compensation.

And then we should re-think county government. 

I have opinions...

I sent this comment to Justin Raimondo's Who's the Libertarian Now?
According to ISidewith.com, I’m 92% in agreement with Johnson. I want people who vote to vote for him.

Johnson’s not, however, the person to articulate the libertarian philosophy. His position on religious liberty, from the burqa flap to the Nazi cake demonstrates that he doesn’t get it. If the Libertarian Party continues to support candidates like him, it should change its name.
I sent this comment to Thomas L Knapp's Hillary Clinton: More Equal Under the Law Than Others:
Cut her some slack. I think her mishandling of the emails was due to PTSD from the sniper fire in Bosnia two decades ago. I'm confident she'll be cured by the Inauguration.
And this to Stephen Cox's Extremely Careless:
We can't trust an agency that has no Constitutional reason to exist to do the right thing. We live in the world where the FBI exists. In a country that tolerated J. Edgar Hoover's Directorship of intimidation and blackmail. In a post-9/11 world where the Dept. of Justice's Inspector General found habitual law-breaking and abuse by the FBI.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Springtime for the Comments Section

I submitted this comment to Rod Dreher's Christians Can No Longer Be Pharmacists:
No one should be denied by The State from buying anything, and no one should be coerced by the State into selling anything to anyone. 

This libertarian voluntaryism is the only principle to fight for. It encompasses religious liberty but isn't about religious liberty.

What we can't do, without looking ridiculous, is affirm the legitimacy of regulation in principle, and then be shocked when they're not the regulations we want. 
And this comment to Sean Gabb's Europe: The Age of Globalism, 1989-2016(?)
The Brexit vote reminds me more of the June, 1989 democratic election in Poland than the fall of the Berlin Wall. It’s the start of something big.
I also submitted this to Brian T. Smith's Shame on NBA Players who chose to skip Olympics:
Chicago radio, 2004, Jay Mariotti attacked Shaq's patriotism because of the Olympics. Don't be like Jay Mariotti.
And on YouTube:


Happy 90th birthday Mel Brooks! Two of the times I laughed hardest were thanks to him. One was the beans scene in Blazing Saddles. The other is this. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Ten random (ranting?) thoughts about guns and gun control

1. Many years ago, someone in an email group tried to corner me. Aha! You've never touched a gun, but you expect us to respect your opinion about gun rights? I think I expressed bewilderment about why I'd be criticized for tolerating something I know nothing about. Because really, how is it better to be in favor of regulating or prohibiting something I don't know or understand? Should ignorance be the foundation of the law? 


I've never been an interior decorator either, but far be it from me to say the law should require a license to be one.

Never been into flower arranging. But I say there shouldn't be a license.

Some state laws disagree. Am I being "extreme" to say let people do the job they want?

Or own what they want?


2. Funny who and who isn't a gun nut. Michael Bloomberg when Mayor of New York wanted police with guns to enforce a law about the size of soda fountain drinks. President Obama wants federal agents with guns to force restaurants to post calorie counts on menus. They want guns to be used on offense to coerce people. I want people to be free to possess and use guns in self-defense.

And I'm the gun nut?

And there are politicians who want the police to use guns to prevent the presence of guns where alcohol is served.

Richard Maybury believes in two laws. The closer a society or government adheres to them, the more order there is. The more they are ignored and supplanted by other laws, the more chaos there is.

Those two laws are:

1. Do all that you have agreed to do.
2. Do not encroach on other people or their property.

When The State encroaches on private property, chaos ensues. No one knows what would have happened if the Pulse nightclub in Orlando allowed its customers to pack heat. But we do know what happened when "government" made it illegal for them to do so.

3. Gun rights advocates, don't go down the "mass shootings is a mental health problem" road. The mentally ill are the most helpless and harmless people in society. They don't shoot up places; if and when they do lash out at others it is in the most ineffectual ways.

4. The problem with guns to protect us from tyranny is the subjectivity and self-interest of the gun owner. If someone refuses to sign up for the draft, that right there is a hill I'd be willing to fight on in defense of that young man (or now, probably, woman). But America's 100 million gun owners have tolerated Selective Service for decades.

5. If it is possible to manufacture guns in residential homes, and it is, then they will certainly be made under gun "control" or gun prohibition laws. Gun Control is about creating a black market.

6. I'm losing patience with saying people have "good intentions" or that the results of their folly are "unintended." A crackdown on guns will NOT prevent mass shootings; it WILL lead to piling up of charges against African-Americans, Hispanics, and immigrants of brown skin. They'll be targeted and profiled, just as they are now in the War on Drugs.

7. The Second Amendment is largely irrelevant. Whether this clause qualifies that clause doesn't take away the fact that no person, or group of people called "government" has the right to deny your right to defend yourself. Human rights don't depend on Constitutions, and the right to life and the right to self-defense are one and the same.

8. Laws aren't about potential. One person's stash of meth can hurt a lot of kids, and another person's one gun can hurt a lot of people. Same can be true of one person's beer supply and another person's car.

9. Those who say the intent of guns is killing humans is like saying the intent of nuclear weapons is to incinerate populations. But defense is more about deterrence than killing.

10. If you think I'm writing in defense of guns because I'm being paid, expose me and follow the money. Please. If there's money I'm entitled to get, I'd like to know about it. But this is a matter of conscience for me and almost everyone who writes in defense of self-defense.

My Orlando reaction


In past few days, I've people on social media blame the following for the Orlando shooting:

  • The NRA, even though the shooter was a security guard who worked at government buildings.
  • President Obama's Muslim immigration policies, even though the shooter's parent migrated from Afghanistan during the Reagan Administration, and the father seemed to have close ties with senior government officials.
  • Christians who oppose gay marriage, for inspiring anti-LGBT hatred, even though Obama himself held that position as recently as eight years ago and the shooter isn't Christian.
  • The FBI, for investigating the shooter then gave up because the guy wasn't doing anything criminal.
These ignorant blame games suggest even more sinister ideas.
  • Gun control advocates say "no one wants to take away your guns." But if they think the laws should stop a licensed security guard from buying one, who would they allow to have one?   y
  • Left unsaid, but implied from the "blame Muslims" crowd is that not only immigrants, but native-born Muslims should be more closely monitored or have restrictions placed on them. Reminiscent of the internment of Americans of Japanese descent during World War II.
  • Implicit in blaming "hatred" is that people expressing disagreeable and/or "extreme" views should be censored. Political Correctness should be the Law of the Land.
  • To blame the FBI is to say the feds don't have enough surveillance powers.
The week before the shooting, a rapist at Stanford University argued that his cultural surroundings influenced his behavior. He got a light sentence, and the nation reacted in outrage. He was to blame, not anybody else. Not his friends. Not the promiscuous, binge-drinking "culture."  

A few days later, many forgot that very point when it came to the Orlando shooter. It wasn't the guns, it wasn't religion, it wasn't what The State did or didn't do. It was him.