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Friday Talking Points [219] -- Another Sad Day

[ Posted Friday, July 20th, 2012 – 15:28 PDT ]

To begin, we're not going to have our normal partisan talking points today. We're going to follow the lead set by Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, and we're just not going to go there today. There will be plenty of time for many vicious partisan talking points in the upcoming weeks, never fear. But today, it just doesn't feel right.

Second, we're not going to talk directly about the horrific shooting today in Colorado. But we are going to have a few choice words to say about idiotic snap judgments, with a heaping side order of scorn for the mainstream media, in lieu of our normal talking points.

To tell the truth, we were already in a sad mood this week, upon hearing the news that Tom Davis passed away. Davis was half of the comedy team "Franken & Davis," which is how both I and millions of other Americans ("of a certain age," these days) were first introduced to now-Senator Al Franken. Davis, while at Saturday Night Live with Franken, came up with such instantly-memorable sketches as the "Coneheads," Steve Martin's "Theodoric of York," and one of the funniest one-time bits they've ever done, the Julia Child "Always save the liver!" sketch. The Washington Post ran a very nice obituary, which is worth reading if you understood those references in the previous sentence.

While this week ends on a depressing and sad note, there were even worse moments early on. Michelle Bachmann is apparently channelling Joe McCarthy and charging (with no more proof than ol' Joe ever had) that there are high-ranking folks in the State Department who are sleeper Islamists intent on destroying America from within. Senator John McCain, to his credit, denounced such paranoia on the Senate floor. Her Democratic opponent for Bachmann's House seat is apparently within a few points of Bachmann in the polls, though, so there's always hope that Bachmann will soon go to that great Republican retirement home in the sky... by which I mean, of course, Fox News.

Ann Romney apparently thinks that "you people" have gotten all the personal info about the Romney family finances as you're going to get. Maybe it's time for some intrepid reporter to ask the stumper that caught McCain four years ago: "Mitt, how many houses do you own?" Please? Anyone? There's a fair-to-middlin' chance that Mitt will blow the question as badly as McCain did, so you'd think it'd be worth asking, right?

To end this wrapup on a bit of good news, the Pentagon will allow serving military members to march in a gay pride parade down in San Diego, in full uniform. This has got to be on a lot of people's "Never in a million billion years did I expect this" list, so we've got to give the Pentagon credit where we feel credit is due, for making a bold decision.

OK, onward to our somewhat-muted awards, and then some ranting -- oh, and before I forget, there will be big news -- a major announcement -- from (and about) this columnist, at the very end.

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

We've got to give an Honorable Mention this week to all the Democrats who valiantly tried to pass the DISCLOSE Act, which would shine some much-needed sunlight on the swamp that is campaign financing in American politics. Every Republican voted against it, so the bill died. Even John McCain and 13 other Republican senators who had previously voted for the bill. This is an enormous issue, and Democrats deserve credit for making the attempt.

Elizabeth Warren also gets an Honorable Mention, just because. This week the first major announcement came out of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau -- a $210 million settlement levied against Capital One. There's a new "cop on the beat" who is standing up for the American consumer. Republicans, of course, were against the idea. Elizabeth Warren was the one who got the idea in the first place, and made it happen (she also wrote about the LIBOR scandal this week, if you're interested in reading her viewpoint on things). Let's hope we have many more of these announcements in the future from the C.F.P.B.

And a third Honorable Mention goes out to Senator Frank Lautenberg, who is apparently going toe-to-toe with the mighty Koch brothers. Fight the good fight, Senator!

But the Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week award goes to Representative Sam Farr, from coastal California. This week, he introduced a bill to right a monstrous wrong in the federal justice system. Anyone charged with a federal marijuana crime is tried in federal court. In such cases, the judge does not allow what is called an "affirmative defense" -- in other words, the defendant having the right to make his or her case to the jury that they were following state laws regarding medical marijuana and providing medicine, often with the full support and approval of local and state government. People with medical marijuana dispensaries who are busted by the feds get to court and are not even allowed to tell the jury that they're not some sort of evil drug dealer. Such a defense is simply not allowed, under current law. No evidence is allowed to show that state and local laws were being followed at all. Not one word of this explanation reaches the jury's ears. It's just: "This person had this amount of marijuana, so you have to convict him of breaking federal narcotrafficking law." That's it.

This is a travesty of justice, and Sam Farr and other House members (including at least one Republican co-sponsor, Ron Paul) have now introduced a bill (the "Truth In Trials Act") which would change these unjust trial rules, and allow for affirmative defenses.

This may sound like an arcane legal point, but it really isn't when you consider the possible effects of allowing defendants to actually make their case to federal juries. If juries start laughing the federal prosecutors out of court, and refusing to convict in case after case, then it will undermine the Justice Department's current overreach on the issue. Sooner or later, the feds will realize they are just wasting everyone's time and money -- only to be slapped in the face with "jury nullification" in every case. Meaning perhaps (just perhaps) the Justice Department will realize that their efforts are going to go nowhere on the issue.

We have no idea what the chances for passage are, but for focusing like a laser on one of the most unjust features of our "drug war" (a war against what the states consider legal medicine) is a brilliant political tactic, and we sincerely hope Farr's bill gets a fair hearing and passes both houses. Perhaps we could start spreading the story that passing this bill will make Obama look really bad politically (in battleground states, to boot!) -- maybe that'll cause the Republicans to start pushing the idea, who knows?

But whatever its chances for passage, Congressman Sam Farr is this week's Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week. Congratulations, and good luck with your bill!

[Congratulate Representative Sam Farr on his House contact page, to let him know you appreciate his efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

OK, we're going to give this one all the attention it deserves -- which is not very much.

As one late-night comic is wont to call him, "Peter-tweeter" Anthony Weiner is back in the news. Apparently, he is living under the delusion that he would be a dandy Democratic candidate for New York City's mayor next year.

He's not going to win that race, but we'll award him a booby prize (perhaps that should be... nah, on second thought, let's not go there) -- his second-ever Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week. Our advice to Mr. Weiner is to avoid future MDDOTW awards and a whole heap of other ridicule -- by just saying "no" to running for any future office.

[We're certainly not going to provide contact info for Anthony Weiner, since he seems to currently be getting more publicity than he's worth.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 219 (7/20/12)

As we mentioned, we have a few words to say about snap judgments, during "breaking" news stories, and then a big announcement to close on.

Whenever any crisis or tragedy or other fast-moving media story happens nowadays, it always ensnares a few in their own idiotic conclusion-jumping. So far, in the Colorado shooting story, we have had two.

The first was ABC News, who aired an innuendo (they did not actually state it as fact, but still...) that the shooter was a member of the local branch of the Tea Party. Turns out, it was someone with a similar name.

Now, when your last name is an uncommon one, it's easy to find you on the web (believe me, I know this). But when someone has a very common last name (Holmes) and an extremely common first name (James), one would think that news editors would be extra, extra careful in researching background -- to make sure they're talking about the same guy. ABC didn't do so. To their shame.

Now, I share very little by way of common viewpoint with the Tea Party. But I have before and will continue to defend their right to protest, to say what they feel, and to participate in American democracy. And that includes fact-checking when making accusations against them. They deserve that respect. They didn't get it. Imagine if it was some political group or cause you held dear -- you'd be outraged. So I join in the Tea Partiers' outrage at ABC News.

The problem, of course, is our hypercharged "up to the minute" news media environment. And it's not even all that new, either. When the Oklahoma City bombing took place, some in the news media almost immediately started wild speculation that Islamists were to blame (a full six years before 9/11 happened, mind you). Just recently, CNN and Fox got the most important Supreme Court decision of the year wrong, because they were trying to "scoop" all the other networks... by a few minutes... or seconds. Even if they had called it right, are those few moments worth the possibility you're getting the facts wrong?

Sloppy is as sloppy does.

Even worse, however, was some wingnut Congresscritter who immediately took to the airwaves to place all the blame for the tragedy squarely where it belongs -- at the feet of those who don't worship fervently enough for this fool's liking. Words cannot express the disgust this story bred in me.

The problem, once again, is our 24-hour news cycle. Well, that and shameless self-hucksterism. Whenever a tragedy is unfolding live on all our screens, the media have got to do something with all that airtime. So they frantically get "experts" and psychologists and politicians on the set to blather wildly and rampantly speculate without a shred of an iota of scintilla of data to base any of it on. In between actual news updates and word from the authorities, the cable television channels just spew a river of slimy guesswork until the next piece of actual news appears on the horizon.

It may be inevitable in these sorts of situations, but we don't have to like it. And we will continue denouncing it, every time idiotic things are said in a tragedy's aftermath. No matter who says it.

 

Big Announcement!

OK, this is not going to be the smoothest segue I've ever written, I realize. I will give everyone a minute to recover as I climb down off my high horse, here.

Seriously, though, this columnist has some big news this week -- ChrisWeigant.com is going to the Democratic National Convention! The kindly folks at the Democratic National Committee have decided that we are worthy enough to merit a press credential to cover the big Democratic Party party (so to speak) in Charlotte, North Carolina this upcoming Labor Day week.

We can promise you first-hand coverage of the whole shindig, which will certainly be an interesting experience to see live and behind-the-scenes.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have a hotel room to book... although if I find one within fifty miles of the city, I'll consider myself lucky at this late date....

-- Chris Weigant

 

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Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground
Cross-posted at: Democrats For Progress
Cross-posted at: The Huffington Post

 

92 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [219] -- Another Sad Day”

  1. [1] 
    michty6 wrote:

    This will be a bit of rant. Not partisan just angry.

    How many tragedies like this happen and then the President/Presidential candidate give their pre-prepared speeches about how sorry they are and how they feel for the families.

    Then what happens the next day? Business as usual. No proposals to do absolutely anything to stop these sort of needless deaths from happening again.

    It is absolutely shocking.

    I am from Scotland and in 1996 a man called Thomas Hamilton walked into a schoolyard and shot a classroom full of innocent children, killing their teacher and 16 other kids.

    The outcry was the same. People were angry, upset and sad. The media was ruthless. Politicians addressed the nation. Gun-control laws were the number one issue for days.

    Except it didn't stop there.

    A public inquiry was held. Eventually a bill was put forward to ban private ownership of handguns. All parties said they would let their members vote freely, with no party alliance. It passed comfortably.

    Yes the NRA is powerful in America. Yes one party is aligned with them and the other scared to take them on. But on days like this they are nowhere to be seen. The public and the media must join together and tell politicians - ENOUGH. Send a clear message. When you are angry now is the time to do this. The media and the people instead of trying to decide 'who is to blame' (as usual) need to finally figure out that it is not 'who is to blame' but 'what is to blame'. And it is clear: gun ownership laws.

    In the UK we said 'we do not support laws which allow this to happen'. America needs to do the same.

  2. [2] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    First, We, the People, who are bosses over our federal public servants, have a consitutional right in this country to bear arms. And our federal public servants are not allowed to dissolve that right and disarm us without a constitutional amendment.

    Secondly, guns don't kill people. People kill people; in this case, a whack job in a tactical costume, whose hair was dyed red, like The Joker, and who had booby-trapped his apartment, for Lord only knows what reason. I'm sure he's going to turn out to be just as huge a headcase as the guy who shot Rep. Giffords in the head. But this world has always had headcases, and always will. So that is not reason to diaarm the populace, because guns didn't cause the guy to act; mental illness most likely did. And a case can just be as easily be made for banning violence in movies, TV shows and video games. Only that's not gonna stop a headcase whose on a mission, either.

    The bottom line is, some really, really horrible crap happens in life. But an incident like this is the rare exception (thank God), not the norm. So, no, we do not forfeit constitutional rights just because a psycho goes wild.

  3. [3] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    CW: ...there's always hope that Bachmann will soon go to that great Republican retirement home in the sky... by which I mean, of course, Fox News.

    ROFL! Cheap shot, Chris. Very cheap shot. But very classy of you (not that I'm surprised) to take NBC News to task for their outrageous Tea Party faux pas. I would join you in taking Bachmann to task, except that I didn't follow that story and don't even know if she named names, or even the first thing about it. I'm getting my first scoop from you. But I'm all for accompanying outrageous allegations with actual evidence, and that goes for political operatives who insinuate the commission of a felony without anything beyond supposition to back it up. We saw that come out of none other than a presidential campaign, recently. Only I'm not seeing a whole lot of outrage coming out of the Left over that, I must say.

  4. [4] 
    SF Bear wrote:

    This blog is very sensitive to the language used to frame the question so it is time to stop using the term "gun control" it only brings predictable responses from folks. I own sporting arms and as an American i have a right to do so, but neither i, nor anyone else have a need, or a right, to possess military weapons of mass destruction. There is no legitimate purpose for owning grenades, body armor, or an assault rifle. I know of no one who hunts deer with a machine gun. Mr 1962 is right in stating that these weapons do not cause the mental case to start shooting, but to deny them would reduce the carnage dramatically. Obviously a deer rifle and a shotgun could do a lot of damage, but no one could kill 12 and put 60 in the hospital with out the assault rifle. Our forefathers did not have an AK-47 in mind when the talked about our right to bear arms. To deny military weapons designed for no other purpose other than killing lots of people does not injure our rights in any way and does no one any good except to enrich a few arms dealers.

  5. [5] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    I own sporting arms and as an American i have a right to do so, but neither i, nor anyone else have a need, or a right, to possess military weapons of mass destruction.

    That's an opinion, not a fact. There's another school of thought out there that feels We, the People, have the right to protect ourselves with the same level of arms that the bad guys are sporting. And there's a whole other group of folks who believe that the citizenry has the constitutional right to protect itself against a run-amok government.

  6. [6] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    There's another school of thought out there that feels We, the People, have the right to protect ourselves with the same level of arms that the bad guys are sporting.

    Lets explore this. Does this include nuclear weapons? Fuel air bombs? Stinger missiles? Landmines?

    As for protecting yourself against run-amok government, that ship sailed right around WW2. Either you get the support of the military in your revolution or you are dead. Period. Technology has surpassed paranoia by a huge margin.

  7. [7] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Banning guns is not the answer. There are something like 300 million guns in this country and a healthy percentage no longer have a paper trail. To enact, the vast majority of people would have to think is a good idea and cooperate or there would have to be martial law evoked and a house to house search done. Even then I would expect a fairly large percentage would be hidden from the search. For good or bad, America is an armed society. That is not going to change any time soon no matter what any side in politics says. I think you could work on the militia part of the second amendment and force anyone who wants to openly admit to owning guns to have at least some safety training. To a certain degree this exists now. In California you now have to have trigger locks and a case to store any gun you own. The local police where I'm from would open up their range on the weekends and they eventually required a NRA or other gun safety class to use it.

  8. [8] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Chris1962 [3] -

    Google "McCain" and "Bachmann" it'll pop right up. Seriously, there's no other word for it than "McCarthyism."

    And one correction: it was ABC News. If you actually look at the quote, the guy states exactly what info he has and what he does not. But that's no excuse for airing it in the first place without checking. I mean, if my name popped up, it'd probably be a pretty safe bet there aren't other "Chris Weigant"s out there, but seriously, James Holmes is a pretty generic sort of name, folks.

    As for the rest of these comments, the example to bring up is machine guns. A tommy gun, say.

    The Thompson submachine gun was "banned" (I'm doing this without fact checking, apologies if details are somewhat off) back in like the 1930s. Except that it wasn't. There were grandfather clauses for people who already owned one. Something like "you can't ever sell this, but you can leave it in your will to someone" or something along those lines.

    Today, you fly in to Las Vegas, and most of the cabs have ads on them: "Fire a tommy gun!!! Come to our gun range!!!"

    So they're still around, albeit not as many of them as in the roaring 20s.

    Even the assualt weapons "ban" was similar -- the ban was on new sales, existing owners got to keep them.

    So I have no real idea what to do, here, is what I'm saying.

    I've actually seen a tommy gun fired, up close and personal, during a tour as a child of the FBI building in DC (they have their own indoor gun range in the basement). It's impressive. It's also a ridiculous amount of firepower for any civilian to own. The agent demonstrating it said something interesting: they have such a "kick" to them that when the gangsters actually used them, almost every shot went high. If you watch old movies, look for the actors who really knew how to handle them -- it was the first gun that people started firing sideways, because then the kick went left-to-right, not up.

    Anyway, I've always thought that strict constructionism here should mean strict constructionism. Americans have the right to bear any arms -- that were made prior to 1789. That, after all, was the "original intent." And muzzle-loading muskets (which I've also seen fired) took a minimum of one to two minutes (even for a trained army man) to reload. Sure, everyone's allowed to bear that particular arm.

    But I know that's really just a semantic dodge. I really have no ultimate answer on this one.

    -CW

  9. [9] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Lets explore this. Does this include nuclear weapons? Fuel air bombs? Stinger missiles? Landmines?

    Since I don't see anyone calling for the right to have a tank in their driveway, I'm gonna take a guess that it includes the type of weapons that local government law enforcement has on hand, i.e., for a run-amok government that might go door-to-door.

  10. [10] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Google "McCain" and "Bachmann" it'll pop right up. Seriously, there's no other word for it than "McCarthyism."

    I suppose I should, but UGH... I hate this kinda stuff. And I'm rarely interested in representatives from states other than my own. I figure it's the job of the given state's residents to get rid of out-of-controllers. Did she name names? At least tell me that much before I drag myself over to google. All I know is McCain got involved and it has something to do with Hillary's assistant/Weiner's wife, WhatsHerName.

    So I have no real idea what to do, here, is what I'm saying.

    I'm with you on that one. But I don't think the solution to these Batman-style mass murders lies in gun control but in indentifying headcases. And how do you go about doing that? This James Holmes had no history of mental disorder, as far as I can tell from the reporting, thus far, and no trouble with the law aside from a speeding ticket. So what do you do? Deny gun ownership to "quiet people who seem pleasant"? That's what neighbors and acquaintances are saying about this guy. (Hell, some guy had beers with Holmes at a bar last week, and Holmes seemed perfectly normal and was chatting about football.)

    And how about some guy who breaks up with his wife and goes to see a shrink? Does he never get to own a gun in his life, after that?

    Frankly, there may simply be NO solution to something like this. I mean, it really is a rare occurence. And society is always going to have that tiny handful of folks who are gonna do completely insane things like this. Remember the guy who climbed some tower in Texas and shot all those students? Charles Whitman, I think his name was. That was back in the 1960's. These crazy-@ss mass shootings are not new.

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    "A gun is a tool, like a hammer or an alligator."
    -Homer Simpson

    A gun didn't walk into that theater and start shooting people.. A nut case did.

    There are many instances where psychotics have taken their cars and drove into a crowd, killing dozens..

    Are we to ban cars??

    As I said in a previous comment, if CO had an open carry law or an easier CCW law, then the tragedy might never have occurred...

    More gun laws are NOT the answer..

    Enforcing the gun laws already on the books (cough FastFurious cough cough) would be a great way to get started on making the country safer..

    Michale.....

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    Kudos for your taking ABC to task... Other than that small faux paus, there hasn't been much hysterics over blaming the shooting on Conservatives..

    I guess the Left learned their lesson from the Giffords shooting...

    One shouldn't jump the gun on finger-pointing or they might end up with tons of egg on their face...

    But, what ABC did simply provides one more example of the MSM being in the bag for the Left/Democrats/Obama...

    Michale.....

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    Enforcing the gun laws already on the books (cough FastFurious cough cough) would be a great way to get started on making the country safer..

    But, what ABC did simply provides one more example of the MSM being in the bag for the Left/Democrats/Obama...

    OK, that was not in keeping with the "No Partisan Crap" desire for the weekend..

    My bust...

    But, on the other hand, you really can't talk Gun Control without partisan politics entering into the discussion...

    So..........

    Michale....

  14. [14] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    good points bashi about missiles, land mines and nuclear weapons not being under the scope of the 2nd amendment. after all, the bad guys are trying to get those too. does that mean bill the electrician should be allowed to build land mines in his basement for self defense?

    CB is right of course about the culture of the US being fiercely wary of any sort of government control on individual liberty. even if it's intended to keep us safe, it could just as easily be construed as a precursor to despotism. that said, i'm extremely glad that the folks at Occupy Wall Street have more statist views on gun ownership. if not, police raids on the encampments could have been much, much worse than a few torn-up tents and broken noses.

  15. [15] 
    LewDan wrote:

    I wish people would stop criticizing Presidents and Presidential candidates over legislative action or inaction.

    The courts get a pass for deciding they have no responsibility to attempt "justice," pretending instead that a one-size-fits-all process equates to fairness and results in justice. It does not.

    The legislature gets a pass because people can only really pressure their Congress-person not the entire legislature. And getting the legislature to do anything requires compromise and commonality of interests.

    But we're not interested in justice. We're not interested in compromise. And we certainly don't care about anyone else's interests but our own. So we dump on Presidents simply because they're easy targets.

    I suggest that tragedies like this aren't the result of guns, they're the result of a lack of respect for others. We live in a time and place that finds selfishness and greed not merely acceptable but admirable. We not only no longer look for common-ground, the very idea of compromise is anathema.

    Instead of gun control I've a more radical notion. How about we start showing each other mutual respect once again? In spite of the video games and violent media we don't have a violent culture. The violence is distinctly abnormal. We do, however, have an insensitive and intolerant culture and our selfishness, greed and indifference to the plight of others is everywhere. That attitude devalues the life of others and is far more dangerous than guns.

  16. [16] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    I suggest that tragedies like this aren't the result of guns, they're the result of a lack of respect for others.

    It looks a whole lot more than the result of mental illness than of lack of respect.

    We live in a time and place that finds selfishness and greed not merely acceptable but admirable.

    We also live in a world where extreme violence is glorified in movies, TV shows, vidoe games, comic books, and even kids' cartoon shows. This shooter had dyed his hair red and referred to himself as "The Joker." So I don't think the Left's "selfishness and greed" social justice agenda is gonna solve the problem of the rare, lone nutjob who's on a mission to mow down Gotham City.

    Instead of gun control I've a more radical notion. How about we start showing each other mutual respect once again?

    I'm all for that, but I have an even better idea: How about if parents start parenting again, instead of turning their latch-key kids over to the government school system to raise? "Respect" gets taught at home, not in some out-of-control classroom. So does morality, for that matter. I think the biggest problem our society is suffering from, quite frankly, is a lack of a mother at home, while dad goes out and earns the money, or vice-versa.

    But, that aside, "selfishness and greed" is very obviously not responsible for the actions of the Batman shooter. There are some folks in this world who are just plain psycho.

  17. [17] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    LewDan and Chris1962 -

    Robert Heinlein, one of my favorite authors to quote, said over and over again in his books that "a society or civilization is doomed when common courtesy and politeness stop being the norm." Of course, he said that as far back as the 1950s... in one of his books, on a future planet, they hold an impromptu trial and hand out a death sentence... for someone jumping the queue in a line for public transportation.

    Now, that's a little extreme, but you get the drift of his thinking. It's the little things that matter. Please and thank you and common respect for others.

    I'm not going to draw sweeping conclusions vis-a-vis Colorado, but I just wanted to toss this into the conversational mix.

    -CW

  18. [18] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    One more thing...

    I do have to say I have a certain amount of respect for Bloomberg, who pointed out that neither Obama or Romney even mentioned the issue of gun control. Agree or disagree with gun control, Bloomberg's got a point -- candidates for president should at least address the issue one way or another.

    -CW

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    CB,

    I'm all for that, but I have an even better idea: How about if parents start parenting again, instead of turning their latch-key kids over to the government school system to raise? "Respect" gets taught at home, not in some out-of-control classroom. So does morality, for that matter. I think the biggest problem our society is suffering from, quite frankly, is a lack of a mother at home, while dad goes out and earns the money, or vice-versa.

    Can't argue with the logic...

    CW,

    I do have to say I have a certain amount of respect for Bloomberg, who pointed out that neither Obama or Romney even mentioned the issue of gun control. Agree or disagree with gun control, Bloomberg's got a point -- candidates for president should at least address the issue one way or another.

    My guess is, right or wrong, the candidates likely feel that they have a lot on their plate right now..

    Why open another front, when things right now are nearly overwhelming..

    Don't much agree with that. Leaders should lead...

    "Emergencies don't just happen when things are hunky dory."
    -Gene Hackman, CRIMSON TIDE

    Great leaders rise to occasions such as this. Mediocre/Poor leaders shirk such responsibility...

    Michale....

  20. [20] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    'He was spitting at the door and spitting at the guards,' a just-released inmate told the Daily News. 'He's spitting at everything. Dude was acting crazy.'

    Freed inmate Dima Danilov, 22, said the suspect’s face was covered with a red towel when he arrived at the jail about two hours after 12 people were killed and 58 wounded inside an Aurora, Colo., multiplex.

    Holmes — who had dyed his hair red — was also wearing red clothing beneath the black body armor...

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/aurora-shooting-suspect-james-holmes-jailed-solitary-inmates-talking-killing-article-1.1119173

  21. [21] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    CW: Robert Heinlein, one of my favorite authors to quote, said over and over again in his books that "a society or civilization is doomed when common courtesy and politeness stop being the norm."

    I agree with that. I think society is on a definite downslide. But I think a breakdown in basic morality has more to do with it than anything else. This "anything goes" stuff — with baby mamas giving birth out of wedlock; like having a baby and raising a kid is akin to getting a new puppy — is doing a whole lot of damage, IMO. I think the family unit is being seriously fractured, to the detriment of tender little growing psyches, e.g., babies being raised, for all intents and purposes, in child-care centers, instead of at home with mom, is unnatural and emotionally unhealthy for development. I think young kids with cell phones and texting and facebook accounts and violent-as-hell video games is also a big problem. It's creating detachment; eliminating one-on-one interaction, which young humans need, to learn that they're dealing with real human emotions and not just impersonal screen names, or virtual figures on a game screen or computer monitor. I think we're just beginning to really see the results of all this, with the escalation of school shootouts, and "online bullying" that's driving kids to commit suicide, and kids who are overweight and immobile from being planted in front of TV set, because their crayz, harried mom is trying to juggle motherhood and a career. And I'm also seeing an attitude among parents who seem to feel like it's the teachers' responsibility to "teach" right and wrong.

    When you compare today's parents to fifty years ago, it's like the adults feel that their lives and careers come first, and their kids' emotional stability and grounding comes second. There's a whole lot of me-me-me going on, and its having a negative effect on kids' emotional development, from where I'm sitting.

  22. [22] 
    ninjaf wrote:

    I think the "crazy lone gunmen" defense isn't enough any more. It is irresponsible to allow people to have these types of weapons while we continue to cut mental health budgets and not expect these incidents to become more common.

  23. [23] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    too true, ninjaf. it's irresponsible to blame tragic events on problems of the mentally ill (and supposedly wash our hands of it), when there's plenty that we as a society can do to better treat and control mental illness.

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:

    It is irresponsible to allow people to have these types of weapons

    It's actually ironic..

    An incident like this occurs and the Left is all about curtailing rights and liberties so as to protect society from a single nutjob with a gun...

    But let a terrorist group kill 3000 people and the Left fights tooth and nail AGAINST curtailing rights and liberties that would protect society from a nutjob terrorist group with biological or nuclear weapons..

    I am sure there is some semblance of logic in that, but I'll be damned if I can figure it out..

    Michale

  25. [25] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    CB,

    But, that aside, "selfishness and greed" is very obviously not responsible for the actions of the Batman shooter. There are some folks in this world who are just plain psycho.
    [snip]
    There's a whole lot of me-me-me going on, and its having a negative effect on kids' emotional development, from where I'm sitting.

    do you not see how these two statements are contradictory? i happen to agree with your second statement, but mentally unstable lunatics don't grow up in a bubble, they have parents who aren't doing their jobs. in some cases maybe that's because they don't care. but in other cases perhaps they can't, or never learned how, or are too busy working seven jobs with no benefits to be able to keep a roof over everyone's head.

    selfishness and greed don't just exist in the abstract, they come home to roost years later.

    ~joshua

  26. [26] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Joshua: do you not see how these two statements are contradictory?

    Well, in the first statement you cite, I was talking about James Holmes, specifically, who's probably suffering from schizophrenia, or something along those lines, based on reports of his behavior in jail. And schizophrenia wouldn't have anything to do with selfishness or greed on anyone's part.

    And in the second statement, I had gone on to speak about society in general. So I don't see those two statements as contradictory. They're dealing with two separate subjects.

  27. [27] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    ninjaf: I think the "crazy lone gunmen" defense isn't enough any more. It is irresponsible to allow people to have these types of weapons while we continue to cut mental health budgets and not expect these incidents to become more common.

    It's a little tough to weed out a person with no police record, no history of mental disorder (or at least not that we know of, thus far) and who presents himself, publicly, as perfect normal.

  28. [28] 
    ninjaf wrote:

    Michale,
    I am not advocating for curtailing anyone's rights. Giving access to people with mental health issues does nothing to curtail rights. I am saying that if we want to have the freedoms to keep weapons that allow for 70 people to be shot within 90 seconds then we need to do more to ensure the general mental health welfare of our society.
    But you can continue to see my comments in the traditional right vs. left prism, if you want. But that makes you continue to be part of the problem.

    Chris1962,
    If we had better availability to mental health services we might have fewer incidents like this. People could get help before they reach the breaking point.

  29. [29] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    If the guy's suffering from schizophrenia, he's probably not of a mind to seek help, ninjaf. And nobody can help someone unless they want to be helped. If they're gonna keep their Batman and Joker thoughts to themselves, there isn't a whole heck of a lot anyone can do about it. It's easy to play Monday morning quaterback, but from what we know at this point, Holmes was having beers with some guy a couple of days before the shooting, and the guy reports that Holmes seemed perfectly normal and pleasant and was chatting about football.

  30. [30] 
    Michale wrote:

    ninjaf,

    But you can continue to see my comments in the traditional right vs. left prism, if you want. But that makes you continue to be part of the problem.

    Your response shows perfectly WHY this problem IS a Right v Left problem..

    I am not advocating for curtailing anyone's rights. Giving access to people with mental health issues does nothing to curtail rights.

    And how, exactly do you propose we recognize mental health issues.

    Certain behavioral characteristics?? Certain physical attributes that manifests themselves..

    WHAM.. All of the sudden, we're profiling..

    There is simply NO getting around it.

    If you want to have the kind of safety and security you are proposing to keep you safe from the lone nutcase with a gun, you MUST deploy the types of right restrictions and liberty curtailments the Left has traditionally screamed to high heaven over..

    Surveillance....

    Communications Monitoring....

    Profiling...

    All those would work quite well to prevent attacks from psychotic lone nutjobs with guns...

    Michale....

  31. [31] 
    Michale wrote:

    All those would work quite well to prevent attacks from psychotic lone nutjobs with guns...

    Ever see PERSON OF INTEREST??

    Of course, it's fiction...

    Sorta..... :D

    Michale.....

  32. [32] 
    ninjaf wrote:

    Michale,
    Your response shows perfectly WHY this problem IS a Right v Left problem..
    How?
    Michale & Chris1962,
    If someone can seek mental health services (for themselves or their family members) before they reach a psychotic break, then that is how increasing funding for mental health services will help stop these attacks -- no profiling or surveillance required. It won't stop all of them but it will make them fewer and farther between.

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    Your response shows perfectly WHY this problem IS a Right v Left problem..
    How?

    The concept of Gun Control is, by it's very definition, a Right v Left issue... Or, more accurately, a Right v FAR Left issue, as there are many on the Left who support gun owner rights...

    The discontinuity in the two philosophies is that the Far Left, for SOME reason, thinks that guns walk into schools or theaters or what have you and shoot people..

    If someone can seek mental health services
    (for themselves or their family members) before they reach a psychotic break, then that is how increasing funding for mental health services will help stop these attacks -- no profiling or surveillance required. It won't stop all of them but it will make them fewer and farther between.

    Agreed. No argument there..

    But, it's been my experience that those who are the violent psychotics will rarely show any outward indication...

    Or such indications are only obvious in hindsight...

    Such was the case with James Holmes and many other psychotics who went beserk.

    Given this, the only way to combat this lack of obvious indications is by the afore mentioned surveillance, communications interception and profiling.. Nothing is foolproof, to be sure.. But the odds of stopping something like this go WAY up if one applies surveillance techniques as I have described...

    Cameras on street corners detecting abnormal activities, facial twitches, heightened emotional responses. All of this and a buttload more IS within the realm of current technology.....

    Does ANYONE have a problem with such surveillance if it will prevent a tragedy such as this??

    I am not arguing your logic regarding mental health...

    My only contention with your comments was the idea that somehow, gun ownership is the problem here.

    It isn't...

    Now, if that wasn't the primarity (look ma!! I made a new word!! :D) of your point, but rather the mental illness aspect was, then you have my sincerest apologies...

    Michale.....

  34. [34] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    I do have to say I have a certain amount of respect for Bloomberg, who pointed out that neither Obama or Romney even mentioned the issue of gun control. Agree or disagree with gun control, Bloomberg's got a point -- candidates for president should at least address the issue one way or another.

    There is already plenty of far right paranoia regarding Obama's intentions on gun control without it being an issue and without Obama having said anything that would remotely give credence to the idea that he is against the second amendment.

    So, what do you suppose would happen to the poll numbers if Romney and Obama start addressing this issue. Can we say President Romney?

    And, that, in case there is any confusion, is a sad commentary on the American electorate.

  35. [35] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    ninjaf: If someone can seek mental health services (for themselves or their family members) before they reach a psychotic break...

    The trick is to identify someone who's a danger to themselves and others. Not every schizo is gonna announce to a family member or a shrink that they're even suffering from a mental disorder (since the schizo isn't exactly in control of his faculties and can't be expected to make rational decisions), much less that they're planning a mass murder. You make it sound as easy as pie, but there are already tons of mental health services out there, and this James Holmes guy slipped right through the cracks, anyway. So what are you proposing? Profiling quiet, pleasant people who tend to keep to themselves?

  36. [36] 
    ninjaf wrote:

    Michale,
    Instead of reading what I wrote, you jumped to conclusion. I conceded that if American society wants to permit guns that will allow 70 people to be shot in 90 seconds, there is a societal responsibility to prevent crackpots from abusing that privilege. I never once used left vs. right anything.

    Chris1962,
    I never said it would be easy. Nothing to do with mental health issues is easy. But if we give access to those services earlier (like any other disease), things can be prevented, circumvented, or caught before they are acted upon. It won't be foolproof, by any means. But they will be fewer in number.
    And I think you would be in the minority if you think that mental health services are fully funded and easily available. Even most employer-provided insurance has pitiful mental health coverage built into them.

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    ninjaf,

    Instead of reading what I wrote, you jumped to conclusion. I conceded that if American society wants to permit guns that will allow 70 people to be shot in 90 seconds, there is a societal responsibility to prevent crackpots from abusing that privilege. I never once used left vs. right anything.

    That's like saying Bush is a frakin' moron who never should have gone into Iraq or Obama is a Muslim secret agent bent on destroying this country, but it's not a Right v Left issue...

    The VERY issue is Right v Left... Simply bringing it up is bringing up a Right v Left issue.

    I am also constrained to point out that there are already laws on the books and mechanisms in place to prevent crackpots from obtaining firearms and to punish those responsible when they do.

    But there ARE no competent mechanisms in place to accurately IDENTIFY those who DO have violent mental illnesses.

    To competently and accurately identify such cases, you need to change the mindset of society to such that believes saving innocent lives (rather than insuring everyone's freedoms and liberties are protected) is the first and most important priority to any civilized society.

    As to the ludicrous idea that fewer gun owners will somehow equal a safer population, this has been PROVEN time and time again to be 100% false.

    Every study ever conducted shows that areas/countries that have looser gun ownership laws have a lower violent crime rate than those areas/countries that have strict gun ownership laws.

    Every area/country that has loosened up gun ownership laws have seen their violent crime rate go down. Every area/country that has tightened up gun ownership laws {{{cough}} Chicago {{cough}} {{cough}} has seen their violent crime rate skyrocket..

    It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see the correlation between gun ownership and violent crime rates.

    When the populace is armed, they are better equipped to protect themselves and the bad guys know this...

    Good read, here.

    Aurora's Strict Gun Laws Didn't Prevent Shooting, But If One Law-Abiding Person In The Theater Had Been Carrying One...
    http://cnsnews.com/blog/ron-meyer/auroras-strict-gun-laws-didnt-prevent-shooting-if-one-law-abiding-person-theater-had

    It makes the point I made above.. If ONE person had been carrying, this tragedy would likely had never happened..

    It's why you never hear of a case of a mass shooting at a gun range or gun store.. Or a Tea Party rally. :D

    If you look back over all the mass-shootings in recent history....

    Columbine
    San Ysidro
    Virgina Tech
    Aurora
    Killeen

    .... they all have one thing in common.

    They would have been stopped before they even got started, if someone in the crowds had been carrying.

    Ironically enough, in the Luby's Diner shooting in Killeen TX that claimed 23 lives, a woman DID have a CCW, but state law prevented her from carrying into the diner.

    While the Left usually screams that the public's access to guns cause these tragedies, the facts clearly show that the LACK of public's access to guns cause these tragedies..

    Or, at the very least, is predominantly contributory..

    Michale.....

  38. [38] 
    Michale wrote:

    Profiling quiet, pleasant people who tend to keep to themselves?

    Well, that leaves ME out! :D

    Michale......

  39. [39] 
    ninjaf wrote:

    Michale,
    You are not debating with me. You are debating right vs. stereotypical left on gun control.
    To competently and accurately identify such cases, you need to change the mindset of society to such that believes saving innocent lives (rather than insuring everyone's freedoms and liberties are protected) is the first and most important priority to any civilized society.
    I believe this has been done before, and it is called the USA PATRIOT Act. And so-called conservatives cheered from the rafters when it was passed.

  40. [40] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Ironically enough, in the Luby's Diner shooting in Killeen TX that claimed 23 lives, a woman DID have a CCW, but state law prevented her from carrying into the diner.

    While the Left usually screams that the public's access to guns cause these tragedies, the facts clearly show that the LACK of public's access to guns cause these tragedies..

    Excellent point, Michale. We, the People, should at least have a fighting chance to defend ourselves. Disarming the good guys doesn't make a lick of sense.

  41. [41] 
    Michale wrote:

    You are not debating with me. You are debating right vs. stereotypical left on gun control.

    No. I am debating with you because you APPEAR to be advocating Gun Control or gun limitation vis a vis mental health.

    There is simply NO argument that the mentally unbalanced should NOT have access to weapons.. To the best of my knowledge there has NEVER been an argument against that. There has NEVER been anyone putting forth the idea that the mentally unbalanced have the right to keep and bear arms..

    If you were just advocating for Mental Health, you wouldn't have to even MENTION guns or gun limitations at all...

    And, just for the record, stereotypes are usually stereotypes for real and valid reasons..

    I believe this has been done before, and it is called the USA PATRIOT Act. And so-called conservatives cheered from the rafters when it was passed.

    My point wasn't the validity of such an increase in surveillance and limiting of civil rights.. I am on record as being 1000% in support of those actions.

    My point was that the Left usually decries and vilifies such tactics..

    What is it the Left usually says??

    "Those who give up an essential freedom for temporary security deserve neither freedom nor security."

    In other words, I was pointing out the irony of a person who embodies the Leftist ideals (that's you) apparently advocating the very thing that the Left has castigated and vilified for the last decade...

    If you want to make the discussion about better identifying and better helping the mentally ill, then I doubt we would have much to argue about.

    But if you bring guns and gun control into the discussion, then it becomes a Left v Right issue..

    Michale....

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    I believe this has been done before, and it is called the USA PATRIOT Act. And so-called conservatives cheered from the rafters when it was passed.

    I am also constrained to point out that Democrats have had ample opportunity and capability to revoke the Patriot Act..

    And yet, the Patriot Act is still the law of the land and has been EXPANDED greatly by the current Administration...

    I just mention that because you appear to want to dump responsibility for The Patriot Act in the laps of conservatives...

    Democrats own The Patriot Act as it exists in the here and now..

    Michale.....

  43. [43] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    ninjaf: I never said it would be easy. Nothing to do with mental health issues is easy. But if we give access to those services earlier...

    First of all, there's nothing to say that Holmes didn't have access to mental health treatment. And even if he did, and it turns out that he's a schizo — a condition that doesn't even start until one is a young adult — a schizo, himself, can't be depended upon to seek out help. So throwing more money (the average liberal's cure-all to everything) into mental health access is not gonna solve the problem of weeding out and stopping a schizophrenic before he goes on his rampage.

  44. [44] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    They found Batman items in Holmes's apartment. What were the chances. http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-holmes-apartment-explosives-20120722,0,5256563.story

    And this, from a Telegraph article:

    "...After the massacre Holmes calmly told detectives he had taken 100mg of the prescription painkiller Vicodin, and identified himself as "The Joker". The same drug was found in the system of actor Heath Ledger when he died of an accidental overdose of prescription drugs in 2008. Ledger played The Joker in the previous Batman film The Dark Knight. Vicodin side-effects can include euphoria, paranoia and, in rare cases, hallucinations.

    The video footage of Holmes was taken at Miramar College in San Diego and showed him explaining that "temporal illusions" are "an illusion that allows you to change the past". Holmes said he had been working on "subjective experience, which is what takes place inside the mind as oppose to the external world".

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    The video footage of Holmes was taken at Miramar College in San Diego and showed him explaining that "temporal illusions" are "an illusion that allows you to change the past". Holmes said he had been working on "subjective experience, which is what takes place inside the mind as oppose to the external world".

    I believe the technical term would be, "Nucking Futz!!"

    Michale.....

  46. [46] 
    ninjaf wrote:

    Michale,
    I am not advocating for gun restrictions. I am advocating for societal responsibility for our choices, should we allow weapons for mass killing to be easily obtainable. You are putting words in my mouth based on your own bias, instead of reading what I am writing.

  47. [47] 
    michty6 wrote:

    I was talking to my friend about this over the weekend. As non-Americans we just can't find the reasoning that we see for your love of guns. There is definitely some strange emotional attachment that you are unable to see because you grew up in this world.

    I always wonder if you changed it from the 'right to bear arms' to 'the right to bear military weapons that can be used to easily kill your fellow citizens' if people would see sense. Or 'the right for everyone, including the most demented and worst of society, to be able to freely and easily obtain military weapons that can be used to easily kill their fellow citizens.'

    It is strange because the right to own a gun was established in 1689 in UK law. The wording of our 'right' was the right 'to have arms for their defence within the rule of law'. So our law had been around considerably longer than your constitution (in fact, this single law is considerably older than the USA) yet we repealed it very easily.

    Sure we didn't have the NRA. But do you want a Government for the people or for the NRA?

    I mean at least consider this: the guy at the cinema shooting was using a 100-round drum clip that could fire 50-60 rounds a minute by police and is believed to have had thousands of rounds of ammunition.

    Even if you believe in the right to own a gun, how on earth do you justify the right to own such weapons (which are barely 'guns')?

  48. [48] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ninjaf,

    I am not advocating for gun restrictions.

    That's great. Then we are in complete agreement as to the mental health aspect..

    Mitchy,

    If private citizens weren't allowed to own guns, we wouldn't have been able to throw the Brits out on their collective arses.. :D

    I am also constrained to point out that Norway has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the world.. And we know the rest of THAT story...

    No amount of wishful thinking will change one simple fact..

    No guns != less violence

    No guns ONLY equals more innocent people killed and wounded...

    Michale....

  49. [49] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Sure we didn't have the NRA. But do you want a Government for the people or for the NRA?

    One and the same thing. We, the People, are the bosses of our governments (federal, state and local). And We, the People, gave ourselves the right to bear arms. In this day and age, it means the same level of weaponry that local law enforcement uses.

  50. [50] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "I am also constrained to point out that Norway has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the world.. And we know the rest of THAT story..."

    Actually Norway, like many Scandinavian wood-filled countries has a high proportion of hunters. So gun laws are not that restrictive. Certainly no-where near the level of restriction in the UK. Obviously more restrictive than America (hard to be as relaxed as the USA).

    "No guns != less violence

    No guns ONLY equals more innocent people killed and wounded..."

    No this is wrong. You are equating 'gun violence' and 'violence' as equal. Obviously gun violence is considerably more deadly.

    This is why the homicide rate of the USA (compared to other Western developed nations) is off the charts; while rates of 'violent crime' are similar.

    The availability of guns is highly correlated to higher murder rates; murders involving guns sharply decrease where there is strict gun control (obviously!).

    Mortality data shows that attacks are far more likely to be fatal when a gun is involved.

    etc etc etc

  51. [51] 
    Michale wrote:

    No this is wrong. You are equating 'gun violence' and 'violence' as equal. Obviously gun violence is considerably more deadly.

    No. I am equating violence with violence.. If someone comes at you with a knife, that is violence, not "gun violence"...

    Mortality data shows that attacks are far more likely to be fatal when a gun is involved.

    And if the mortality is from the attacker, I really don't have a problem with that...

    The availability of guns is highly correlated to higher murder rates; murders involving guns sharply decrease where there is strict gun control (obviously!).

    Assumes facts not in evidence..

    Michale.....

  52. [52] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    No. I am equating violence with violence.. If someone comes at you with a knife, that is violence, not "gun violence"...

    Same with Holmes rigging his apartment to explode, with enough gasoline in there to have created a fireball that would've taken out at least the entire floor of that apartment building. That's not gun violence, as you say; it's violence. It's an intent to kill.

  53. [53] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Again there is a huge difference between 'crime' or 'violent crime' and 'murder (homicide)'. Guns are the most lethal weapon that people are allowed to carry, so they obviously lead to a higher homicide rate. If you are happy to live in a country with a considerably higher homicide rate (i.e. your chances of dying in a violent crime are higher) then be happy to not change gun policies.

    It is hard to produce facts because different countries have different definitions of 'crime' and 'violent crime'.

    The crime rates compared to the UK and USA are by most accounts similar. In fact a lot of sources show the crime rate is higher in the UK than the USA. The best I can get on wikipedia is the UK crime rate is around 1,600 per 100,000 and the USA 3,466 per 100,000.

    I am not using this as an argument for gun control as, like I said, it depends on the definition of crime and there are many variables in a crime rate - most of which are probably related to social circumstances(in my opinion).

    Homicide rates are much more easy to compare (from Wikipedia):
    USA - 4.8 per 100k
    UK - 1.23 per 100k.

    So even if we accept that crime rates are double in the USA (this is obviously disputable), the homicide rate is almost 4 times higher.

    The logic is simple: crime and violent crime will exist in any country and are largely based upon social circumstances. But in America you are way more likely to die in any crime (see above stat) than the UK because the offender can get access to a gun considerably more easily.

    The same applies to all Western developed nations - where 'crime' or 'violent crime' rates are likely quite similar to America, yet America destroys them in homicide rates. And when I say destroys them I am not exaggerating, it isn't even close. Take Norway, since you brought them up, their homicide rate is 0.68 - so you are over 7 times more likely to die in America than Norway in a crime.

  54. [54] 
    Michale wrote:

    Like with the majority of the Left's belief structure, Gun Control fails to take into account human nature..

    Gun Control, as the Left views it, assumes that everyone will play by the rules. Take guns away from law abiding citizens and there will be no more violent crime...

    But statistics clearly show JUST the opposite. Like I said above, in areas where there are lax gun laws and a well-armed populace, violent crime is down..

    FBI statistics for 2010 clearly show that, while gun sales are UP (meaning more guns amongst the population, violent crimes are DOWN, across the board...

    The top 3 states for gun murders are California, Texas and New York.. Of those three, CA and NY have some of the most restrictive gun laws in the country.. Yet they have the highest gun murders in the country..

    You'll find that amongst the states with the lowest gun murders (Maine, North Dakota, etc) they are SHALL ISSUE states which means that it's very easy to get a CCW...

    Anyone with more than 2 brain cells to rub together and without an agenda can see clearly what the facts indicate..

    A well-armed populace is a SAFE populace...

    Michale.....

  55. [55] 
    Michale wrote:

    Take Norway, since you brought them up, their homicide rate is 0.68 - so you are over 7 times more likely to die in America than Norway in a crime.

    *IF* you are unarmed...

    If you are armed and trained, that puts the odds IN your favor, not against you...

    Michale....

  56. [56] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "If you are armed and trained, that puts the odds IN your favor, not against you..."

    If you get shot when you're armed you still die!

    Trained is a very good argument (against guns): if you are trained and the other guy isn't carrying a gun, the odds are actually heavily stacked in your favour; if the guy is carrying a gun it comes down to who pulls the trigger first - by being able to carry a gun he has neutralised the training that you have big time.

  57. [57] 
    Michale wrote:

    If you get shot when you're armed you still die!

    I take it you have never been shot. :D

    Trained is a very good argument (against guns): if you are trained and the other guy isn't carrying a gun, the odds are actually heavily stacked in your favour; if the guy is carrying a gun it comes down to who pulls the trigger first - by being able to carry a gun he has neutralised the training that you have big time.

    I think you are confusing your arguments..

    They guy who is trained and is legally carrying is NOT the one likely to be committing the violent crime...

    That's the whole point... The scumbag with the gun who is committing a violent crime is likely to have the gun, with OR WITHOUT the Left's restrictive gun laws.

    The ONLY thing that restrictive gun laws do is disarm the law abiding citizenry and make them akin to lambs to the slaughter...

    The criminals and scumbags LOVE the Left's Gun Control ideas..

    THAT alone should tell the Left something about the advisability of their Gun Control agenda...

    Michale.....

  58. [58] 
    akadjian wrote:

    A gun didn't walk into that theater and start shooting people.. A nut case did.

    Bashi makes a great point. How do you feel about nuclear weapons then, Michale?

    Or surface-to-air missiles?

    Or other military equipment?

    You can say the same thing about all of these. They're just tools. Nuclear bombs don't kill people. People kill people.

    And I want a surface-to-air missile or you're denying my FREEDOM!!!

    -David

    p.s. I also want a pony.

  59. [59] 
    Michale wrote:

    Bashi makes a great point.

    Not really...

    How do you feel about nuclear weapons then, Michale?

    Or surface-to-air missiles?

    Or other military equipment?

    You can say the same thing about all of these. They're just tools. Nuclear bombs don't kill people. People kill people.

    In the context of what we are discussing (self defense) everything mentioned is non sequitor..

    Does a person need a Tactical Nuke for self defense?

    No they do not...

    Ergo, it's not a realistic part of this discussion..

    Michale.....

  60. [60] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "I think you are confusing your arguments..

    They guy who is trained and is legally carrying is NOT the one likely to be committing the violent crime..."

    Exactly! Would you rather the person committing the crime be carrying a gun or not carrying a gun? Your OWN armed status does not matter one bit. The person committing the crime is likely to AT LEAST match whatever armed status you have personally. So they are considerably more likely to have a weapon in America.

    "That's the whole point... The scumbag with the gun who is committing a violent crime is likely to have the gun, with OR WITHOUT the Left's restrictive gun laws.

    The ONLY thing that restrictive gun laws do is disarm the law abiding citizenry and make them akin to lambs to the slaughter...

    The criminals and scumbags LOVE the Left's Gun Control ideas.."

    Utter nonsense. Drivel. Nothing but your own warped opinion. I have presented you with facts which correlate the availability of guns with the likelihood of being shot and killed. Everything you have presented is based on your own right wing opinion with no facts or evidence.

    I can easily refute your nonsense. I lived in the UK. When they passed the law banning guns we were not 'lambs to the slaughter' and the criminals were not celebrating. In fact less people are dying now than were before! We were the ones celebrating! Read the statistics I posted!!

  61. [61] 
    Michale wrote:

    How do you feel about nuclear weapons then, Michale?

    But if you DO want to talk Nuclear Weapons we can discuss Iran... :D

    Michale....

  62. [62] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    David: How do you feel about nuclear weapons then, Michale?

    Or surface-to-air missiles?

    Or other military equipment?

    You can say the same thing about all of these. They're just tools. Nuclear bombs don't kill people. People kill people.

    And I want a surface-to-air missile or you're denying my FREEDOM!!!

    Reductio ad absurdum. We, the People, are not calling for the right to have a tank in our driveway or ground-to-air missiles. We reserve ourselves the right to have the basic weaponry that our local GOVERNMENT law enforcement equips itself with.

    And, no, you're not getting a pony.

  63. [63] 
    Michale wrote:

    Exactly! Would you rather the person committing the crime be carrying a gun or not carrying a gun? Your OWN armed status does not matter one bit. The person committing the crime is likely to AT LEAST match whatever armed status you have personally. So they are considerably more likely to have a weapon in America.

    You assume much. Most of it wrong..

    First off, as has been established, Gun Control laws do absolutely NOTHING to lower the possibility of criminals being armed. By DEFINITION, criminals ignore the law..

    Secondly, most criminals who ARE armed really are not proficient with their weapons. Speaking from personal experience I can tell you that 90% of the weapons found at the scene of crimes are in pretty crappy shape, hardly ever been cleaned and the sights really adjusted for accuracy... Even with the deficiencies, the criminals do a LOT of damage against an UN-ARMED populace...

    Finally, I would pit any legally armed and trained citizen over a dozen illegally armed scumbag criminals any day of the week and twice on Sunday...

    Utter nonsense. Drivel. Nothing but your own warped opinion. I have presented you with facts which correlate the availability of guns with the likelihood of being shot and killed. Everything you have presented is based on your own right wing opinion with no facts or evidence.

    Actually, all you have presented was your uninformed opinion with little substantiation..

    As to "no facts or evidence"??

    How about two and a half decades as a police officer, county sheriff deputy, military police, military intelligence, FSO with postings in a couple dozen countries that span the globe?

    You can quote left wing drivel disguised as stats until the cows come home. But none of it has ANYTHING to do with reality.. If you MUST go with stats....

    http://sob.apotheon.org/?p=1323

    The reality is, your average scumbag criminal will steer clear of any place, location, area or dwelling where there is even the SLIGHTEST hint that people are armed..

    Have you ever heard of a mass shooting at a gun range?? A gun store?? A cop bar???

    No, you haven't. Why??? Because the people at those locations are trained and armed..

    Scumbag criminals and psychotics hit soft targets. They LOVE gun-free zones... And YOUR solution is to make EVERYWHERE a gun-free zone???

    SERIOUSLY!???

    If you REALLY want to compare gun statistics in foreign countries, look at Switzerland or Israel... Excluding the terrorism in Israel, you rarely see mass murders in either of those countries..

    Why?? Because it is well known that practically each and every household has at least one automatic weapon and several handguns...

    Disarming people is NOT the solution to gun violence.. Because all it does is give the criminals free reign..

    It's not rocket science. It's human nature...

    Michale.....

  64. [64] 
    Michale wrote:

    mitchy,

    Cumbria
    Hungerford
    Dunblane

    Are gun-free zones really that much safer???

    One must wonder what the end result would have been if an armed and trained citizen were at those locations...

    Actually, one doesn't have to wonder. The answer is self-evident....

    Michale.....

  65. [65] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Sigh. I mean seriously some of what you say... I really hope you are winding me up, I can't believe anyone is capable of believing such things... Some examples:

    "First off, as has been established, Gun Control laws do absolutely NOTHING to lower the possibility of criminals being armed. By DEFINITION, criminals ignore the law.."

    No! So so so so so so wrong. Supply, demand, availability, price, legality. These things affect ownership of guns (like any other product). If you can buy a gun at a corner store, there will be more guns on the street. If obtaining a gun is illegal and you can't do this easily it will be harder to obtain!

    You seem to think that a ban would work by the Government saying 'ok tomorrow guns are illegal' and that's it! Of course this is not how it works! It is a process that takes years (and often many amnesties). Due to the high level of ownership in America it would probably take a very long time.

    Google and look at any statistics of gun ownership/crime/anything in a country after a ban has been implemented.

    "Secondly, most criminals who ARE armed really are not proficient with their weapons."

    Firstly, I don't really care about proficiency. If my choice is to robbed by someone who is extremely likely to have a gun (USA) or extremely likely to not have a gun (UK) I'd take the latter every-time.

    Secondly, lack of proficiency can be a very, very, very bad thing - people get shot by accident! This is another problem with freely allowing ownership with no skills, qualification or training requirements - some people even leave their guns lying around the house and end up getting shot by their kids... It is absolutely shocking that this is allowed to happen in an educated Western country...

    "Finally, I would pit any legally armed and trained citizen over a dozen illegally armed scumbag criminals any day of the week and twice on Sunday"

    Let me use some numbers in an analogy. 2 guys with guns, one is trained, the other isn't (is unskilled). I give the trained guy a 60-70% chance.

    The reason? Guns neutralise the edge the trained person has.

    Now if you have two guys, no gun and one is trained and the other not trained (is unskilled) I'm going with the trained guy 100% of the time. Like 100%. No doubt. No lucky shot from the other guy. No machine capable of firing off bullets that make up for his lack of skills. He is toast.

    "Actually, all you have presented was your uninformed opinion with little substantiation.."

    I am not going to quote myself again. Read post [53].

    "Have you ever heard of a mass shooting at a gun range?? A gun store?? A cop bar???"

    This is the dumbest of your statements. And that's saying something. It's like you are claiming that cop bars would be top targets for robbers if guns were illegal lol. In your world, all over the UK cop bars are being robbed left right and centre, powerless cops unable to stop them!

    "If you REALLY want to compare gun statistics in foreign countries, look at Switzerland or Israel... Excluding the terrorism in Israel, you rarely see mass murders in either of those countries.."

    Again complete ignorance. You really need to stop arguing points about Europe with someone who is European because you will lose every-time.

    In Switzerland they have effective military conscription - since they are a neutral country without an active military they have a 'militia'. So an extremely high number of people carry a gun because the guns are ARMY ISSUED because they have done army service. So saying 'a lot of people in Switzerland carry guns and shootings are low' is like saying 'a lot of people in the army carry guns and shootings are low'.

    This is completely different to America. You can't walk into a store in Switzerland and buy a gun without having done army training (have a permit). Gun OWNERSHIP is a completely different issue to gun AVAILABILITY. The latter makes for a much more dangerous society.

    "Disarming people is NOT the solution to gun violence.. Because all it does is give the criminals free reign..

    It's not rocket science. It's human nature..."

    This is your view of the world based on your own personal opinions about what would happen in America, based on your own (right wing) biases, that it would resort to a lawless crazy wild west if guns were banned.

    You are completely ignoring the fact that many countries have either banned or regulated guns and the only experiences they have had is less people have died!.

    I lived through the UK gun ban in 1997. I was there. In person. I can tell you first hand the impact. And if you don't believe me I have already shown you the statistics.

    You can preach home until the cows come home about what you THINK might happen if guns were banned. I can TELL you what I KNOW will happen because:
    1. I have lived through a gun ban being implemented and seen the effects first hand
    2. I use facts and statistics, not here-say and opinion, to support my claims.

  66. [66] 
    akadjian wrote:

    We, the People, are not calling for the right to have a tank in our driveway or ground-to-air missiles.

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/grigg/tank.jpg

    I want the right to have EVERYTHING law enforcement has. And criminals too. EVERYTHING!

    Otherwise you're a Communist.

    Because if a criminal has a bazooka and I don't have one, I might not be able to defend myself.

    Why are you trying to take away our FREEDOMs, CB?
    -David

  67. [67] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "Cumbria
    Hungerford
    Dunblane

    Are gun-free zones really that much safer???

    One must wonder what the end result would have been if an armed and trained citizen were at those locations..."

    I'm going to give you a little bit of advice that I'm sure many people on this forum would echo:

    - THINK before you post. I know you clearly like to post quickly and generally have a disdain for facts or anything else. But come on it's not that hard.

    - Check your facts before you post nonsense facts. I know you don't mind being easily dis-proven but it will save a lot of time (and posts).

    Ok so with that out the way, Hungerford was in 1987, Dunblane in 1996; the UK gun ban was in 1997 (as a result of Dunblane) - did you read my first post in this thread??

    Cumbria was in 2010 (hooray you got one out of three right!). One (only?) major shooting since 1997. Here are a list of major shootings in the USA since 2005 (it's a long read since it's 62 pages long):
    http://www.bradycampaign.org/xshare/pdf/major-shootings.pdf

    The reason why it's not comparable?

    To quote myself:
    "Homicide rates are much more easy to compare (from Wikipedia):
    USA - 4.8 per 100k
    UK - 1.23 per 100k.

    So even if we accept that crime rates are double in the USA (this is obviously disputable), the homicide rate is almost 4 times higher.

    The facts don't lie even though you don't believe them or seem to think they do...

  68. [68] 
    Michale wrote:

    No! So so so so so so wrong. Supply, demand, availability, price, legality. These things affect ownership of guns (like any other product). If you can buy a gun at a corner store, there will be more guns on the street. If obtaining a gun is illegal and you can't do this easily it will be harder to obtain!

    Assumes facts not in evidence...

    Firstly, I don't really care about proficiency. If my choice is to robbed by someone who is extremely likely to have a gun (USA) or extremely likely to not have a gun (UK) I'd take the latter every-time.

    You are missing the point..

    If the home invader is unsure as to whether you have a gun or not, YOU WON'T GET ROBBED...

    The reason? Guns neutralise the edge the trained person has.

    NO IT DOES NOT...

    That's your entire problem here.. You are speaking of theory and I am speaking of life experience...

    This is the dumbest of your statements. And that's saying something. It's like you are claiming that cop bars would be top targets for robbers if guns were illegal lol.

    No.. I am saying that criminals won't hit places where people are armed... Duh... Do you need me to draw you a picture???

    In Switzerland they have effective military conscription - since they are a neutral country without an active military they have a 'militia'. So an extremely high number of people carry a gun because the guns are ARMY ISSUED because they have done army service.

    NOW you're catching on..

    In the US, you have to take classes to obtain a CCW.. You have to demonstrate proficiency with a firearm at a range.. Or you have to be prior military or LEO (that's me)..

    In other words, YOU MUST BE TRAINED to use your gun and understand the legal and moral implications of such use..

    What?? You think you can run down to the corner liquor store, "I'de like a 12-pack of Bud Light and a Glock .40 with a couple spare clips.. Thanx.."

    This is your view of the world based on your own personal opinions about what would happen in America, based on your own (right wing) biases, that it would resort to a lawless crazy wild west if guns were banned.

    The FACTS speak for themselves..

    Anywhere gun restrictions are loosened, violent crime goes down..

    Anywhere gun restrictions are tightened, violent crime goes up...

    It's not rocket science...

    You are completely ignoring the fact that many countries have either banned or regulated guns and the only experiences they have had is less people have died!.

    Once again, assumes facts not in evidence...

    You can preach home until the cows come home about what you THINK might happen if guns were banned.

    Maybe that works in other countries. I doubt it, but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt..

    But here in the US, the pattern is clear..

    An armed populace?? Violent crime goes down..

    A disarmed populace?? Violent crime goes up...

    And no amount of left wing bs ideology will change those simple facts...

    Michale.....

  69. [69] 
    Michale wrote:

    I have to give you credit, mitchy.. At least you appear to have some staying power. Mostly we've seen of late, people will just do "drive by"s where they state outrageous ideas and such and then take off..

    You appear to be able to go the distance, at least. Kudos.. :D

    CW,

    Something totally out of left field..

    Did you ever try to get a press pass for the RNC convention??? :D

    Michale.....

  70. [70] 
    Michale wrote:

    Mitchy,

    You quote BRADY CAMPAIGN??? :D

    Lemme ask ya something..

    Would you give any credence to anything I posted from NRA.COM???? :D

    Com'on..

    I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and say that you MAY know what you are talking about when it comes to UK Gun Control. My own experience with the Brits tell me yer full of it, but it's been a while, so I'll give it to you..

    By the same token, you cannot presume to know what is what here in the US just based on some statistics from a hysterical Gun Control group..

    I draw my references from statistics from LEO agencies, including the FBI and ATF, plus my own personal experiences of two and a half decades in the field..

    An armed populace is a safer populace...

    An unarmed populace is a lamb to the slaughter...

    These are the facts, whether you choose to acknowledge them or not...

    Michale.....

  71. [71] 
    michty6 wrote:

    (1) "Assumes facts not in evidence..."

    I mean you haven't quoted one fact (I know why, because they all prove you wrong lol).

    This is something I could prove with facts but it's pretty simple economics.

    You believe: making guns illegal would mean more criminals carrying guns
    I believe: making guns illegal would mean less criminals carrying guns.

    I mean I assume you know about basic economics of supply and demand? Do you think that if guns are made illegal that gun manufacturers are going to manufacture more or less guns? And, vice versa, since guns are legal now can you see that gives them an incentive to manufacture and get more guns out on the street?

    If they banned cookies tomorrow do you think there would be more or less cookies available in the legal and illegal markets lol?

    (2) "If the home invader is unsure as to whether you have a gun or not, YOU WON'T GET ROBBED...

    No it means the robber is MORE LIKELY TO BE CARRYING A GUN AS THEY ARE MORE EASILY TO OBTAIN!

    (3) "The reason? Guns neutralise the edge the trained person has.

    NO IT DOES NOT...

    That's your entire problem here.. You are speaking of theory and I am speaking of life experience...

    (a) If you had to assign percentages for (i) a trainer person with a gun vs an untrained person with a gun and (ii) a trained person without a gun vs an untrained person without a gun. What you assign? For me it's (i) Anywhere from 50-80% (ii) 100%. The guy has no weapon, no training and no chance. Can you not see how a weapon neutralises the advantage of the most trained person?
    (b) If people are so inefficient in using guns surely this is further evidence for MORE CONTROL and bans? You know those accidental gun deaths:
    the rate of accidental gun death in the USA is 0.23 per 100k. The rate of homicide in Japan is 0.35 per 100k. So not only are you less likely to be murdered by a gun in Japan but almost as many people in America are dying ACCIDENTALLY handling guns compared to the total murder rate of Japan!!!

    (4) "The FACTS speak for themselves..
    Anywhere gun restrictions are loosened, violent crime goes down..
    Anywhere gun restrictions are tightened, violent crime goes up...
    It's not rocket science..."

    What facts? You have literally not quoted any...

    (5) You are completely ignoring the fact that many countries have either banned or regulated guns and the only experiences they have had is less people have died!.
    Once again, assumes facts not in evidence...”

    I have shown you the difference between the USA and UK homicide rates. Again:
    - You: no facts, personal opinion based on your USA experience/bias
    - Me: clear facts based on UK vs USA, UK experience having gone through a gun ban.

  72. [72] 
    Michale wrote:

    Mitchy,

    You quote BRADY CAMPAIGN??? :D

    Lemme ask ya something..

    Would you give any credence to anything I posted from NRA.COM???? :D

    Com'on.. Let's try to stay on planet earth here, shall we???

    I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and say that you MAY know what you are talking about when it comes to UK Gun Control. My own experience with the Brits tell me yer full of it, but it's been a while, so I'll give it to you..

    By the same token, you cannot presume to know what is what here in the US just based on some statistics from a hysterical Gun Control group..

    I draw my references from statistics from LEO agencies, including the FBI and ATF, plus my own personal experiences of two and a half decades in the field..

    An armed populace is a safer populace...

    An unarmed populace is a lamb to the slaughter...

    These are the facts, whether you choose to acknowledge them or not...

    Michale.....

  73. [73] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    If they banned cookies tomorrow do you think there would be more or less cookies available in the legal and illegal markets lol?

    Ban alcohol and see how that works out. Oh, wait...

  74. [74] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/grigg/tank.jpg

    Gee, looks like you have a case, there, David. Go for it.

  75. [75] 
    Michale wrote:

    Other than the Brady document (BRADY!?? Seriously!!???) you have not posted ANY substantiation of your position..

    I, on the other hand, have posted FBI statistics that show an increase in gun sales beget a DECREASE in violent crimes...

    Given the two options (living in fear or taking a stand) I'll choose the later...

    If your way works for you, more power to ya..

    But just keep in mind. Every dictator in history disarmed the population first...

    Michale....

  76. [76] 
    Michale wrote:

    Making guns illegal won't mean any less guns on the streets..

    It will simply create millions more "criminals"....

    I have lived through a gun ban being implemented and seen the effects first hand

    Yea, lemme know how you make out the next time massive riots hit your "safe" and gun-less country... :D

    "In England, if you commit a crime, you don't have a gun and the cops don't have a gun. So with the cops, it's like 'STOP!!! OR I'LL SAY 'STOP' AGAIN!!!"
    -Robin Williams, LIVE AT THE MET

    :D

    Michale....

  77. [77] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "I, on the other hand, have posted FBI statistics that show an increase in gun sales beget a DECREASE in violent crimes..."

    Let's say this is true and that America has lower rates of violent crime than any other country that has strict gun control (false, but let's assume it's true to see where it goes).

    The FACT that America apparently has lower rates of violent crime but HIGHER homicide rates (than every single other Western democracy - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_intentional_homicide_rate - the nearest Western country to them is Finland, where you're more than 2 times less likely to die) shows that when there is a violent crime in America it must be many, many, many times 'violenter' (I am good at making up words!) and you are considerably more likely to die (because of guns) as a result of a crime in America than ANY OTHER WESTERN DEMOCRATIC COUNTRY.

    So going on your analysis - again I dispute it, but lets see where it leads us - you'd rather than marginally lower rates of violent crime with a many, many times higher chances of dying (homicides) than slightly higher rates of violent crime but a much, much lower chance of dying due to a homicide. Correct?

    "But just keep in mind. Every dictator in history disarmed the population first..."

    Hahaha well played :) (I assume it's a joke)

  78. [78] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "Making guns illegal won't mean any less guns on the streets..

    If you actually believe this, there is no changing your mind. Literally every single fact (plus basic economic knowledge) disproves this. I know you're not a fan of facts, but surely you can see how this is absolutely nonsense?

    Let me put it this way: the police know you own a gun, correct? So if guns are banned they have a list of people who own guns, correct? So implementing this law shouldn't be too difficult!

    So you'll have:
    - Lower demand for guns (like anything illegal)
    - Lower supply (manufacturers can't make illegal products legally!)
    - Police with a list of people to chase up and collect guns
    - Gun amnesties etc that come with the implementation.

    In the face of this you believe there will be MORE guns on the street if guns are made illegal??

  79. [79] 
    Michale wrote:

    Even if you believe in the right to own a gun, how on earth do you justify the right to own such weapons (which are barely 'guns')?

    The UK is a small country..

    I am SURE that competent well armed cops are just minutes away from EVERY location in the country..

    The US is a bit spread out considerably more than the UK......

    Where I live, I am about 30 minutes from any civilization... If my family is ever attacked (considering my former line of work, a distinct possibility) back-up is at least 30 minutes away...

    Yea, I can see where having a few 100+ round magazines is advisable...

    Your problem is you are reducing things down to the lowest common denominator..

    That's the kind of thinking that gets innocent people killed...

    Michale.....

  80. [80] 
    Michale wrote:

    Your problem is you are reducing things down to the lowest common denominator..

    More accurately, your assuming the BEST case scenario... That competent LEO capability is moments away...

    Those of us who know better don't have that luxury...

    "You all just live in your own little world, don't you!!!"
    "Yes, Doctor we do. We don't have the luxury of living in yours!"

    -MANHATTAN PROJECT

    Michale.....

  81. [81] 
    Michale wrote:

    The FACT that America apparently has lower rates of violent crime but HIGHER homicide rates (than every single other Western democracy - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_intentional_homicide_rate - the nearest Western country to them is Finland, where you're more than 2 times less likely to die) shows that when there is a violent crime in America it must be many, many, many times 'violenter' (I am good at making up words!) and you are considerably more likely to die (because of guns) as a result of a crime in America than ANY OTHER WESTERN DEMOCRATIC COUNTRY.

    You are comparing apples and alligators again..

    You need to stick with one stat and quit changing them when your argument founders.

    Stick with Gun Homicides or Violent Crime Homicides..

    But Kudos on the new word. I'll add it to my dictionary... :D

    Like CW says in his newest commentary, no one's mind is going to be changed.. I will grant you that you have stats that back up your position. And you must grant that I have stats that back up my position..

    Stats are like polls. You can ALWAYS find one to support ANY claim so, in and of themselves, stats mean very little. Just like polls...

    But the facts ARE the facts. Gun Control in America is a LOSING proposition.. Any politician who advocates for more restrictions on gun ownership is signing their own political death warrant...

    Here in the US, we don't NEED more gun laws. We need better and more stringent enforcement of current laws...

    But it's clear, in hindsight, that nothing would have prevented the Aurora Theater massacre...

    Unless the Left consents to a supercharged Patriot Act on steroids, gun massacres will always be among us... Getting rid of guns won't change that. It will only make it more likely that there WON'T be anyone there to stop another psychotic on a rampage with a gun...

    Michale.....

  82. [82] 
    Michale wrote:

    Switching to another subject..

    Feinstein: Someone at White House is behind recent intel leaks
    http://thehill.com/blogs/defcon-hill/policy-and-strategy/239661-sen-feinstein-says-someone-at-white-house-is-behind-leaks

    Well, well, well.. What have we here....

    Team Romney is going to have a FIELD Day with this!!

    I think Obama's chances for re-election just got a LOT smaller...

    Michale.....

  83. [83] 
    michty6 wrote:

    ^^ Lol where did you think they came from?

    "You need to stick with one stat and quit changing them when your argument founders.

    Stick with Gun Homicides or Violent Crime Homicides.."

    Perhaps you should read again. I have never referred to either "gun homicides" or "violent crime homicides" anywhere. I have referred to one rate consistently - read and see, I am not repeating myself. (FYI my job is analysing numbers)

    "Gun Control in America is a LOSING proposition.. Any politician who advocates for more restrictions on gun ownership is signing their own political death warrant..."

    This we can absolutely agree on.

    But the USA is a young country and (imo) always a little behind in social matters - for example, some of your citizens only just got health care for the first time (in 2012!!). Gun laws certainly won't change in my generation but they will down the line.

    It took the UK a long time to ban guns - for 299 years UK citizens could carry guns legally until 1997. It wouldn't surprise me if it takes a similar amount of time for the USA to see the light...

  84. [84] 
    Michale wrote:

    ^^ Lol where did you think they came from?

    Oh, *I* knew they came from the White House. Obama trying to beef up his image as a macho man.

    But the White House has been denying they released the intel..

    So, Team Obama got caught in another lie...

    But the USA is a young country and (imo) always a little behind in social matters - for example, some of your citizens only just got health care for the first time (in 2012!!). Gun laws certainly won't change in my generation but they will down the line.

    Nope. Never happen... But you keep dreamin'.. :D

    Michale.....

  85. [85] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "Never happen"

    Many people were saying that about health-care for decades. And yet, here we are...

  86. [86] 
    Michale wrote:

    Many people were saying that about health-care for decades. And yet, here we are...

    Actually, many people were saying it about health-care REFORM...

    It STILL hasn't happened. Nor will it ever..

    That pesky Right v Left again....

    Michale.....

  87. [87] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Very true, Obama's health-care bill certainly doesn't reform the health-care sector in any way...

  88. [88] 
    Michale wrote:

    Very true, Obama's health-care bill certainly doesn't reform the health-care sector in any way...

    Ya see!!! We CAN agree on things!! :D

    I would be willing to wager we would agree on a LOT more than we disagree on...

    Michale.....

  89. [89] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Oh lol I was being sarcastic! You actually believe that Obama's bill doesn't reform the health-care sector in America in anyway? I'd say it makes some preeeeeeetty big changes to health-care provision in America!

  90. [90] 
    Michale wrote:

    Oh lol I was being sarcastic! You actually believe that Obama's bill doesn't reform the health-care sector in America in anyway? I'd say it makes some preeeeeeetty big changes to health-care provision in America!

    Yes it did.

    ALL for the worst..

    Have you been on another planet???

    One out of ten employers are dropping their health care plans for their employees because of ObamaCare.

    83% of Doctors have considered leaving the Medical Profession because of ObamaCare.

    Obamacare throws Four BILLION dollars in ADDITIONAL taxes on small business owners than previously thought. FOUR BILLION DOLLARS MORE taxes in addition to all the other taxes...!!

    And it goes on and on and on...

    Obamacare isn't health care reform in ANY way, shape or form..

    It's simply sticking it to the middle class again and again and again and again...

    If anyone thinks that Obamacare has actually made health care BETTER and less expensive, they are obviously clueless as to the reality of ObamaCare...

    Michale.....

  91. [91] 
    michty6 wrote:

    @[89]
    This is a fantastic piece of personal opinion. I'd love to see your facts on this (I don't include Fox or Rush Limbaugh statements as 'facts' unless they reference an independently produced survey).

    "If anyone thinks that Obamacare has actually made health care BETTER and less expensive, they are obviously clueless as to the reality of ObamaCare..."

    This is such a nonsensical statement. Drivel. Nonsense. Personal, biased opinion.

    Since Obamacare hasn't actually come into practice I am interested as to how you ALONE are aware of the 'reality' of it's impact on costs of healthcare??

    You can make an argument for what might happen based on logic and reason (you haven't you have stated personal opinion).

    For example, I would argue simple laws of supply and demand mean when you increase supply in an already limitless market (new Exchanges to facilitate supply) and also increase demand (people must now buy healthcare, can't reject those with pre-existing conditions) that Economics101 will dictate that prices will go down. High supply + high demand = power lies with the 'demanders'; previously it was low-medium supply and limited demand = power lies with the 'suppliers'.

    Now factor this in with the fact that the average amount nationwide spent by employers on their employees healthcare is now MORE THAN $10,000 (yes - OVER TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS PER EMPLOYEE - http://www.businessinsurance.com/article/20111116/NEWS03/111119928). This is after 40% increases in the past 5 years - so clearly the current system is working well!

    If this >$10k cost is reduced, as is expected under Obamacare, this will easily offset the higher tax costs that SOME (mainly large businesses) will pay; small businesses get an even better deal (tax credits for providing healthcare).

    Of course I don't claim this to be reality (like you) because I know reality might be different.

    I also don't claim Obamacare will be perfect. No country which introduced a form of Universal Healthcare for it's citizens got it right first time. Whilst America is extremely late to the game, so can learn from the mistakes of the many other countries, I would seriously doubt if they also don't make mistakes along the road...

  92. [92] 
    Michale wrote:

    This is a fantastic piece of personal opinion. I'd love to see your facts on this (I don't include Fox or Rush Limbaugh statements as 'facts' unless they reference an independently produced survey).

    The stats and polls are out there, in NUMEROUS articles that cite all these facts and more..

    Yer a smart guy. I am sure you can find them if you REALLY want to... :D

    It's all a moot point anyways. President Romney will repeal ObamaCare....

    Michale.....

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