Friday, September 29, 2006

AR-15 Glock?

In a report at on the recent school shooting in Colorado, they give me a giggle
Authorities found a .357 Magnum and an AR-15 Glock on Morrison's body. U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives had traced one of the guns to the Colorado relative who received the letter, Wegener said.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

1911's Inside Out

Got a new 1911 on Saturday. I ordered it in February and it finally arrived. It's the Springfield "Tactical" Combat Black Stainless. The trigger is a bit crusty feeling and substantially heavier than on my TRP, so I went to The High Road Consolidated 1911 Thread page to have a look at what to do. Turns out that completely dissasembling a 1911 frame is quick and easy and all you need is a hammer and an AR-15 firing pin to do the job. Let's begin There they are, ready to go. The black stainless is already stripped down except for the trigger/hammer assembly. I ended up looking for those parts for half an hour and then realized they were still on the gun, duh. Now, take off the grips on the TRP Rubber band on the grip safety, ILS retaining pin in, and knock out the mainspring housing pin with an AR-15 firing pin Mainspring housing out Now all the little bits come out easily: hammer, grip safety, sear, disconnector, mag release and finally the trigger And here's the whole happy mess from both guns The whole experience was just that much happier on account of "The Unit" playing on CBS And here's the little bits from top to bottom: disconector, sear, hammers. The TRP parts are on the left while the black stainless parts re on the right. Not a whole lot of difference, except the TRP hammer has one less hook thingy on it, and the TRP sear is a little fancier. Voila!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The "Gun Guys," Freedom States Alliance Etc.

I've signed up for various "information" emails from a bunch of anti-gun groups so I can keep track of what's going on from their point of view. There's way too much garbage for me to comment on the farce that these groups partake in on a weekly basis, and most of the gun bloggers out there already know about these idiots. I'm going to make an exception today and post on a couple points, one that is an elaboration of something new in the gun/anti-gun fight. First, though, lets deal with The Gun Guys (actually, just one guy):
One of the arguments we hear time and time again from the gun guys is that "criminals don't follow the law-- that's what makes them criminals." The idea there is that if we pass a gun ban, criminals won't follow the laws we pass any more than the ones that are already in place. Their thinking is that a gun ban law will do no good, because no criminal will ever follow it.

There are a few obvious responses to that one. First, if laws don't stop crime, why do we have a law against murder? Why is it illegal to steal? If criminals don't follow the law, why bother making any laws at all, right?

Of course that's not true. Creating laws creates consequences for actions you don't want to be undertaken. If a gun ban was passed, anyone who chose to use a gun criminally would have even more consequences for that action (currently they're put in danger of their lives, of course-- why anyone would choose to have a gun around is a mystery to us). Would a gun ban law keep criminals from ever using guns? Of course not-- we have laws against theft and that happens all the time. But would it give would-be criminals a bigger incentive to stay away from firearms? You bet.

The other problem with this whole "criminals don't follow laws" argument is that some criminals do have to follow the laws, even when they're helping out crime. Take the junk gun dealers in California that we wrote about today. When they broke the law in California (by selling firearms that didn't meet "safety standards" (though we'd love to see a firearm that meets our "safety standards"-- that doesn't exist), they were forced to close up shop. That's right-- they were criminals, and they were made to follow the law.

Of course, they didn't close up completely. They instead moved to Nevada, where looser laws let them make and sell all the junk guns they want. Which brings us, finally, to the real problem of controlling criminals and their guns. We'll never get criminals to follow gun laws-- if we don't pass the laws in the first place.
Now, I'm going to assume my readers are smart, and hence I won't provide any commentary for that which preceeded this. On the other hand, something interesting is happening in the gun rights debate, it's becoming just that, and that seems to have caught the anti's off guard, and, as reported in none other than the New York Times, is helping our cause.
One group represented at the conference had reason to celebrate: the National Rifle Association, which in the past decade has been refining its own version of globalization. At first, the group openly fought gun control abroad, but that enabled gun-control advocates to accuse local gun lobbies of selling out to America. In Brazil, the N.R.A. tried a new approach. Brazil has the most gun deaths annually of any country, and last October it held a referendum on a nationwide gun ban. In the run-up to the vote, polls suggested that more than 70 percent of Brazilians supported the ban. Then the Brazilian gun lobby, which previously had emphasized the desirability of gun ownership, began running advertisements that instead suggested that if the government could take away the right to own a weapon (though Brazilians have no constitutional right to bear arms), it could steal other civil liberties. This argument took gun-control advocates by surprise, and on voting day, 64 percent of Brazilians voted against the gun ban. “We gun-control groups failed to anticipate this idea of focusing on rights,” admits Denis Mizne of Sou da Paz, a Brazilian public-policy institute. As a report in Foreign Policy revealed, the National Rifle Association lobbyist Charles Cunningham had traveled to Brazil as early as 2003 to impart strategy to local gun advocates, teaching them to emphasize rights instead of weapons.
Interesting. And look, it didn't take long for the other side to change tack. My email from the "Freedom States Alliance (whatever that is) is iluminating
Dear stalin:

Do you know that the NRA lobbies for and backs court cases to allow domestic violence offenders to own guns? And that they also think men who are under restraining orders should be able to pack heat?

And members of the so-called “gun rights” movement also defend the "right" of sex offenders to carry around guns! If you have a hard time believing that, read this recent article from the Freedom States Alliance website, “”

What we have here is not a “gun rights” movement, but a dangerous form of psychosis that puts the safety of women and children in peril.

Indeed, an incident in North Carolina on September 18, dramatically illustrates the bloodshed that comes in the wake of the NRA’s fanaticism:

“A man accused of pushing his way into a domestic violence shelter and killing his estranged wife was being sought today by authorities who believe he fled in a stolen car. John Raymond Woodring is accused of shooting 48-year-old Bonnie Woodring to death Monday night. Sylva police Chief Jeff Jamison said Woodring already was wanted on domestic violence charges for allegedly trying to strangle his wife.”

We wish that we could have saved Bonnie Woodring from a gun lobby that enables killers like her husband. She is another victim of the gun lobby’s extremism.

That is why we will keep working to change America’s understanding about guns, the gun industry, and gun violence – one American at a time, in communities throughout the nation.

Freedom States Alliance
Changing the Way America Thinks About Guns and Securing Our Nation’s Future
Foul bastards! That tripe could not convince a thinking human being. It's pretty clear they've gone to a quantity over quality approach. Lets look at what they've got
We wish that we could have saved Bonnie Woodring from a gun lobby that enables killers like her husband. She is another victim of the gun lobby’s extremism.
The gun lobby had nothing to do with this. Trying to strangle your wife is attempted murder, isn't it? That's a felony. Among the problems with Lautenberg amendment, probably the foremost problem with it, is that it is retroactive. One case I read about, the guy was wrongly acused of domestic abuse, but plead guilty because it was only a misdemeanor, involved no jail time, and avoided an expensive legal defence with an uncertain outcome. Only problem is he didn't know at the time that he would lose his gun rights. Had he known, he would have fought the charges.

Anyway, the interesting thing is that the anti's are trying to get in on the "rights" aspect of the battle. I think they are doing poorly. This should help us, but only time will tell. And with that, I am unlikely to ever attempt a fisk of these nitwits again, it's not worth my time.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

If Only It Were True

The laughable Hugo Chavez had this to say in his already infamous "Bush is the Devil" (has he seen "The
Waterboy?") speech.
He [Chavez] recommended that the [UN] world body's headquarters be moved to another country and offered his own as a possible new home.
Never thought I'd agree with Chavez.

On the Coup in Thailand

One of my labmates is from Thailand, and his take on the recent coup is that it is benign and likely to be beneficial for the country. Apparently the former leadership was quite corrupt and a non-military solution did not exist. The coup was nonviolent and the idea is that the military will take over for a short time, install a provisional government, and then hold free and fair elections as soon as possible. That General Sonthi Boonyaratglin is Muslim is apparently not a factor.

Time will tell.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

DHS vs. The Cat People

We're in the process of adopting a cat from a local shelter, which, apparently, cares very much where their homeless critters go. We had to provide three character references and the name of our vet. The shelter went ahead and obtained records from the vet, and then called all three references. One of these people, a friend from work, commented that when we put her down as a reference for my husband's permanent resident application last year, nobody from DHS called her. That surprised me. Turns out DHS didn't call anyone on our reference list. Were they too busy to call? are Finnish immigrants not worth worrying about? does DHS just not care? I realize Finland is not terribly controversial in the scope of world events, but for all DHS knows, my husband is part of some radical Finnish organization that seeks to impose mandatory recitations of the Kalevala on an unsuspecting populace. Not worth one phone call to find out? It's possible that the folks at DHS have streamlined things enough to know whose backgrounds are worth checking, but I'd still feel more secure if they showed almost as much concern over the adoption of foreign citizens as the shelter people do when they're adopting out stray cats.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Forgetting 9/11

I used to like Will Smith. Now I like him even more. I'm looking forward to that one.

This is a very interesting read. It's about some of the last people to make it out of the WTC on 9/11. They were in the North Tower on the 91st floor, just below where the plane hit.
Still covered in ash and dust, he started walking across town. “It was a lunchtime crowd on 23rd St. People were sipping cokes, talking on their cell phones. It was complete normalcy. I can’t tell you how weird it was. I went into a deli and stood in line for a glass of water. I stood in line! A man came round from behind the counter. He gave me two bottles of water. But I realized he just wanted me out of the store. In all that time, only one person asked if I needed help. One person! I got a glimpse of what it means to be a refugee or a homeless person. I was transparent.” He recalls with a hollow laugh pressing himself up against a building in fear as an F16 fighter plane flew low overhead, the lunchtime crowd walking on oblivious.
New Yorkers, go figure.

Remembering 9/11...

This is how I like to remember the WTC towers

Michelle Malkin has comprehensive posts today to commemorate the despicable acts of war that destroyed these towers and the hopes and dreams of thousands of human beings within them.

James Lileks has a stirring video tribute to the events of 9/11/01.

I think Cox & Forkum best sum up my sentiments with this cartoon ("That Day")

Friday, September 08, 2006


I've gotten to the point where I'm disgusted with the fact that the neo-cons have shanghai'd the Republican Party. Kim du Toit likes to call them the Stupid Party, but I think it's gone beyond that. They've become the Arrogant Party. They've abandoned the small-government, non-intrusive roots of the old Republican Party, and, intoxicated with power, they're only going to get worse (i.e. become more like Democrats). The borders are a mess, education sucks, and spending is out of control. Worst of all, they still haven't come to terms with the fact that we're at war with the religion of Islam, not just terrorism. The prospect of registering my approval for the Arrogant Party vis-à-vis my vote is becoming more and more painful. However, the prospect of having to live with the Democrats (i.e. the Evil Party) holding the reins of power is dreadful. I'm truly chilled to the bone by the threat issued by Democrats to ABC over the airing of The Path to 9/11*. If ABC loses its broadcast license over this, the 1st amendment is effectively dead, and we might as well be Cuba.

I've never liked the idea of holding my nose while I vote for something that's only incrementally less horrible than the alternative. What incentive is that for them to change? And hell will freeze over before I vote for something I believe is evil just to get back at someone else. The remaining alternative is to simply stay home on election day. The sad truth is that people only change in the face of a crisis. I'm almost at the point where I think the Republicans need that crisis -- a resounding loss in November -- to realize that they need to return to their core values in order to win votes. I'd be prepared to live with the consequences if it means we can get rid of the neo-cons and find genuine Republican candidates in time for 2008.

* Update: Looks like the issue may be moot already. This would be worse than ABC losing its license, because such a blatant trampling of the 1st would have shaken a lot of people up; caving in just emboldens the thugs. Incidentally, this is the way the Social Democratic Party in my husband's native Finland keeps its strangle-hold on broadcast media. It's understood that if you don't toe the party line, you can kiss your broadcast license goodbye.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Oh Mercy!

This was a good one. Somebody got to my blog with a google search of "50 caliber bullshit." I was in rare form, almost frothing at the, er, mouth. That's going in the best o' fudge list.

Monday, September 04, 2006


You likely know by now that Steve Irwin, the Crocodile Hunter, was killed by a stingray earlier today. I wanted to mention it here, because my husband and I are fans of The Crocodile Hunter (we even have the movie on DVD).

Irwin seemed like a nifty guy -- larger than life, but kind and intelligent, and enormously passionate about what he did for a living. Watching his show, you couldn't help but be fascinated by whatever he was talking about.

I think some people liked to mock The Crocodile Hunter, because of Irwin's unaffected and enthusiastic style. But I liked it. I found his love for wildlife, particularly those of his native Australia, charming; and, even though I thought he was a bit crazy at times, I admired the way he cheerfully embraced the considerable risk involved with what he did. It's the stuff of legends.

Sorry to see ya go, mate.

Friday, September 01, 2006

California, Welcome to Waiting Lists

From Limpidity we find that California is in a race with the lemmings to get over the cliff.

I have some experience with this, and it's a problem. California has a population of 36 million people. Canada, where I lived more than half my life, has a population of almost 33 million people. Canada has universally crappy health care, and California wants to do the same. I...

Well, you all know where this is going, and I've got a tub running, and Smallest Minority has an interesting post up, first in a while, so if nobody minds, and I think nobody does, given the linkage I've not received for my last couple efforts which I thought were pretty grand, I'm gonna quit this post here. But to summarize: Canada sucks, California sucks. The End.

Joe Conason at Salon gets it Wrong

This Joe Conason guy doesn't know the English language. He says that this is a lie
...and therefore, we worked with the world, we worked to make sure that Saddam Hussein heard the message of the world. And when he chose to deny inspectors, when he chose not to disclose, then I had the difficult decision to make to remove him.
See, Joe implies that Bush is saying that Saddam denied the inspectors entry to Iraq. We all know that is not the case. What Saddam did, was to DENY the inspectors unfettered access to any sight in Iraq that they wanted access too. Furthermore, Saddam denied them unfettered access to Iraq's scientists or anyone else who may have had knowledge of the WMD programs. In the interviews, a member of Saddam's regime had to be present to intimidate the interviewee. And all this info easily available on wikipedia.

So Joe, get it right. Or I'll keep calling you stupid.

First we had newspeak... we have Islamspeak.

A Turkish publisher has decided to alter Western literature to conform to Islamic virtues and values.
"Give me some bread, for Allah's sake," Pinocchio says to Geppetto, his maker, in a book stamped with the crest of the Ministry of Education.

"Thanks be to Allah," the puppet says later.

In "The Three Musketeers," D'Artagnan is told that he cannot visit Aramis.

An old woman explains: "He is surrounded by men of religion. He converted to Islam after his illness."

Tom Sawyer may always have shirked his homework, but he is more conscientious in learning his Islamic prayers. He is given a "special treat" for learning the Arabic words.

Pollyanna, seen by some as the embodiment of Christian forgiveness, says that she believes in the end of the world as predicted in the Koran.
And on it goes.

If these Islamicized versions weren't so scary in a 1984-esque way, they'd be downright hilarious. However, the good news is that it appears this has been done without the permission of the Turkish Ministry of Education, whose official stamp nevertheless appears on the books. They seem pretty peeved about it, and have threatened to clamp down on publishers, though this seems more in response to embedded slurs and insults against members of the government, rather than to the rewriting of Western classics.

But, you know, I can kind of see where the publishers are coming from. You gotta impart your virtues to the kids somehow, lest they become slaves to the evil Satanic ape-like Western way of thinking. I would therefore like to show my solidarity with the publishers by offering the following Islamicized passages of one of my favorite works.

From J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings:
"By the Blessed Prophet (PBUH), you cannot pass!" he said. With a bound the Balrog leaped full upon the bridge. Its whip whirled and hissed.

"He cannot stand alone!" cried Aragorn suddenly and ran back along the bridge.

"Allahu Ackbar!" he shouted. "I am with you Gandalf!"


"It's a pity Bilbo didn't kill him when he had the chance."

"Pity? It was the will of Allah that stayed Bilbo's hand. Many that live, such as the vile infidels of the West, deserve death. Some that die, blessings upon the martyrs, deserve life. Can you give it to them, Frodo? Do not be too eager to deal out death in judgment, unless it be in the service of Allah (Praise be upon Him!). Even the very wise cannot see all ends, except for the glorious Prophet Mohammed (PBUH). My heart, guided aright by Allah, tells me that Gollum has some part to play yet, for good or ill before this is over. The pity of Bilbo, moved by the hand of the Almighty, may rule the fate of many."

"I wish The Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had ever happened."

"So do all who live to face such times, but that is not for them to decide. Thanks be to Allah, all we have to decide is how to carry out His will (Praise be upon Allah!)."
Well, that was easy. You know, this could become a sort of parlor game. Break out the cheese puffs and rootbeer, and everybody Islamicize your favorite passages!

Dang, I Knew It Was Too Good to Be True

I just got an email alert from stating that my U.S. representative, none other than "Bagdad" Jim McDermott
voted to endanger the lives of children by supporting an amendment that would prevent the enforcement of a law requiring gun dealers to provide child safety locks with every handgun sold.
Whose interest did your Representative have in mind late that night? The gun industry and gun lobby. Not children. That is clear.
Needless to say, I was shocked. Shocked! My hopeless moonbat representative voted to turf a stupid gun control bill? Here's the full spiel
Tell Him/Her to Do the Right Thing: Oppose H.R. 5005, 5092, and 1384

Dear mao,

Late one night this summer, your U.S. Representative, Jim McDermott, voted to endanger the lives of children by supporting an amendment that would prevent the enforcement of a law requiring gun dealers to provide child safety locks with every handgun sold.

Whose interest did your Representative have in mind late that night? The gun industry and gun lobby. Not children. That is clear.

And now the gun lobby wants another gift, in the form of three bills that will tie the hands of cops, weaken the ATF, and make it easier for gun traffickers and criminals to get guns.

Tell him/her: "You sold out our kids' safety to the gun lobby. Now do the right thing.
Oppose H.R. 5005, 5092, and 1384."

Congress had actually approved the child-safety lock legislation last October, but due to pressure from the extreme fringe of the gun lobby, the House has since voted to prohibit enforcement of the law. Why did the House sink this low? Because too many Members feel beholden to gun extremists like the NRA.

And now, the NRA is leading an effort to gut the enforcement power of the ATF and tie the hands of local law enforcement from going after the corrupt dealers who supply gun traffickers and feed the illegal market by trying to pass H.R. 5005, 5092, and 1384.

H.R. 5005 would weaken ATF's ability to share valuable crime gun data with local law enforcement — data revealing the gun dealers with the worst records of supplying the illegal market, like Sandy Abrams, who actually sits on the NRA’s Board of Directors! There are also many other harmful provisions in the bill, including eliminating the current requirement that gun dealers report multiple handgun sales to local law enforcement officials.

The gun lobby is also frantically pushing H.R. 5092, a bill that would undermine ATF's ability to crack down on corrupt gun dealers. If H.R. 5092 became law, gun stores — like the one owned by Sandy Abrams that had more than 900 violations of federal law — could continue doing business with no threat of having their federal licenses revoked.

But the NRA is not stopping there. H.R. 1384 is an insidious assault on the landmark 1968 Gun Control Act and will only help gun traffickers who want to exploit states with weak gun laws.

Why all this action? Because this session of Congress is almost over, and the NRA wants to give its friends in the gun industry more favors before the tide turns against them in the fall elections.

Here's What You Can Do Today to Help:

1. Email Your U.S. Representative Today.
Tell him or her: "Oppose H.R. 5005, 5092, and 1384. Help law enforcement, not corrupt gun dealers." Click here to send your Representative an email.

2. Make a Donation of $25 or More.
Support our efforts to stop the NRA from weakening law enforcement by passing these egregious bills before the fall elections. Click here to contribute now.

3. Spread the Word.
Use our easy form to forward this email to everyone in your address book. Congress needs to hear loud and clear from those who support sensible gun laws. Click here to forward this email to friends.

Please tell your U.S. Representative that he or she was wrong to put gun extremists' interest above the safety of our children — and to not make the same mistake again by putting gun industry profits above public safety. Don't tie the hands of our law enforcement officers! Give them a fighting chance against gun criminals.

Your Friends at
OK, that was fun. Seems like it must be too good to be true. Turns out it is
Dear StoptheNRA Member,

We are very sorry, but due to a technical error in our last email to you (Tell Your Rep: Help Law Enforcement, Not the NRA), a small group of you may have received a version that misstated your Representative's vote on a Child Safety Lock amendment.

To find out how your Representative voted, you can check out the actual roll call vote by clicking here:

(A vote of "aye" is to prevent enforcement of the law requiring gun dealers to provide child safety locks with every handgun sold. A vote of "no" would be to stand up for the safety of our children and to keep enforcing the Child Safety Lock law.)

We apologize for any confusion this may have caused -- and we still encourage you to take action on the dangerous bills that are still before the House (H.R. 5005, 5092, and 1384), by clicking here:

Your Friends at
Bummer. That guy is such a dope, it's hard to believe that he keeps getting reelected.