Wednesday, January 06, 2016

A Tangled Weber

A Better Way to Tackle America's Gun Problem

The linked piece is another call for more gunowner control, this time in the form of mandating certain tools and accouterments be kept only at licensed ranges. But there's something important nestled in the paragraphs of justification leading to this proposal:

"The state has been defined as whatever authority possesses a monopoly on the legitimate use of violence. It is this monopoly on violence that fosters social order and permits civil society to flourish and thrive. When a mass shooter opens fire on a crowd, he is also taking aim at civil society and striking a blow for chaos and barbarism. But when citizens respond to this act of anarchism not by empowering the state to make it more difficult for the next mass shooter to carry out his murderous plans but by putting even more guns in circulation, they further degrade public authority by refusing to grant the state the authority it needs to preserve order and keep us safe.
Down that road lies the dissolution of politics, and a return to a pre-political state of nature in which every individual acts as his own highest authority, using violence to defend himself against violence found all around him." (emphasis mine, link in original)

The piece concludes thusly:

"Let's make it just a little bit harder for the barbarians to wreak their havoc — and a little bit easier for the rest of us to take a stand for civilization."

This notion, that the state is responsible for societal growth through a monopoly on legitimate use of force, is antithetical to the concept of Natural Rights.  It's one of the chief demarcations betwixt the Progressive Culture and the Scots-Irish Culture (which is arguably synonymous with the Gun Culture, or Gun Culture 2.0).

Sunday, January 03, 2016

Prescribed Burns

David Codrea and Mike Vanderboegh respectively have been on top of the situation near Burns, Oregon.

The Hammond Family Does Not Want An Armed Standoff

Respecting Wishes

Oregon Standoff Report

Perfect Timing for the Regime...

The Collectivists Have Begun to exploit It

3% of Oregon Official Press Release

Oregon Situation on the Web

The MSM has been taking notice as well...

Militants Continue Occupation of Oregon Refuge, Police Keep Low Profile

WTF is Happening in the Oregon Militia Standoff, Explained

David and Mike are the best places to go to for updates on the events in Oregon. Mike points out that the twitter feed of Les Zaitz (a reporter for TheOregonian/OregonLive) is also a good source for keeping up with things.

The TL;DC version (Too Lazy; Didn't Click) is that on Saturday, January 2nd, a group of people occupied a previously unoccupied (it was closed for the holiday weekend) federal building on a remote wildlife refuge about 30 miles outside of Burns, Oregon. Estimates of the number of occupiers range from 15 to 150. These folks split off from various patriot groups who were in nearby Burns to protest the treatment of the Hammond family. Those patriot groups have disavowed the occupiers' actions, stating the purpose of coming to Burns was to peacefully protest the Hammonds plight, not entice an armed stand-off. The occupiers are being represented by Ammon Bundy, whose father Cliven Bundy was the centerpiece of a dispute and stand off with the feds.The occupiers have stated they in addition to the Hammonds release, they want the federal government to return land to the loggers and ranchers of Harney County, and they're prepared to use the occupied building as a staging area for years if necessary.

The Hammonds patriarch Dwight and his son Steve were convicted of arson for burning land the feds owned (which was next to the Hammonds land) without permission. The conviction was under a 1996 anti-terrorism act which carried a mandatory 5 year sentence. The trial judge thought 5 years was absurd and sentenced them to less than a year respectively. The feds appealed and the 9th circuit court of appeals upheld the mandatory 5 year sentence, but graciously allowed them to delay reporting for prison after the holidays. A fairly good write-up of their plight can be found here.

The Hammonds were not asking anyone to do anything, saying they'd report to prison as ordered to serve their remaining sentence. The residents aren't happy about this situation, though they seemed at least tolerant if not supportive of the original protests earlier.

David, and especially Mike are speculating that the feds not only have people inside with the occupiers, but they instigated this situation to begin with, via agent provocateurs

The big wild card is the feds. For now they're hanging back, but I don't expect that to last much longer than it takes for Obama's team to plan out how to spin this situation.

Let us not forget, that in the Oval Office sits the most politically minded president ever to set foot in D.C. - which is saying something. No situation, crisis or opportunity to pass the salt is not sifted threw his "how can I make this work for me politically?" filter. Anyone thinking Obama will let this crisis go to waste hasn't been paying attention. It's just a matter of what angle he'll play.

He could not do much and point to this as an example of "domestic terrorism", urging congress to pass legislation that he wants passed to deal with this situation. Or use it as justification for executive action. He could also clamp down and put on a show of force to bolster his base. Doing the latter wouldn't negate the previous options. It's merely a question of what Obama think would be the approach most advantageous to him politically.

Obama wants more gunowner control laws, and he's planning on using executive action to get as much as he can. It's not debatable if he'll use this situation to that end, but how.

That the cops aren't doing much doesn't surprise me; the feds are in charge, which means the FBI. I have no doubt their inaction up to this point is because they're waiting for Obama's team to give them instructions. I'd assume explicit instructions, of the micromanaging variety. I doubt Obama's team wants this to get away from them as did the San Bernardino terrorist attack.

The Hammond family plight is worth protesting, as is the amount of land in the west controlled by the feds and their treatment of the locals. Occupying a remote building on federal land, trying to provoke a confrontation isn't how I'd go about things, based upon what I know of the situation currently. Politically this plays directly into Obama's hands and I'm a firm believer in it being unwise to attempt to out-democrat a democrat. I won't rule out the notion that government infiltrators had some part, small or large, in orchestrating this event. It is entirely possible I'm missing some information that would change my mind, but as it stands I think this occupation is a mistake that our enemies will use against all of us.

I don't plan on going to Oregon, but I fear Oregon may soon come to us.