Reducing Rampages

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Stopping madmen with guns is – statistically speaking – best solved by people, not police, and people with guns. Rampage killings (which include all the common varieties of incidents where a lot of people are murdered, be it mass public shootings, active shooter events, spree killings, etc.) are what scares voters. Most people know and avoid rough neighborhoods. They also choose friends and mates wisely. This keeps mayhem low, evidenced by the fact most gun crime is isolated in a tiny number of towns with big city gang infestations. It is the random odds of dying in a rampage shooting that spooks folks. One fellow decided to see what keeps the most people alive in such incidents, and discovered citizens – especially armed citizens – are the most effective, and vastly more so than cops (see the section below on methodology, data quality, etc.). Survival is the objective The researcher … Continue reading

No Mass

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If you are losing, change the definition of the argument. There is a classic tale about Amtrak. They had a lousy on-time record. After months of investigation and planning, they implemented changes and quickly began boasting that their on-time record was fantastic. What they changed was the definition of “on-time” from plus or minus five minutes to 30 minutes. When empirical evidence does not support gun control, members of the gun control industry change definitions. It is a classic propaganda technique and one that has found new life in this election cycle. The news item which brought this to mind was when several reporters blindly echoed claims that mass public shootings were sharply on the rise. A quick dig into the data these reporters failed to vet showed that the definition of “mass public shooting” was itself inaccurate. The enduring and traditional definition of a mass shooting is one where … Continue reading

Missouri Misstep

Missouri Homicide Rate - before and after repeal of permit-to-purchase

Hokum requires a bit of magic. A popular con circulating in the gun control debates is that when the state of Missouri repealed their law requiring a permit to buy a handgun, that homicide shot up. Sadly, nobody told the FBI and the folks there who run the Universal Crime Reporting database. Sadly, too, few reporters have found the online portal to this data, otherwise the meme might never have lived longer than the Bloomberg School of Public Health press release. So how did this formerly illustrious school pump forth this effluvium when the raw numbers do not support the claim? It all comes down to math. In the press release for the study, they note that they too pulled data from the FBI crime database. But they also note that “the analyses controlled for changes in policing, incarceration, burglaries, unemployment, poverty, and other state laws adopted during the study … Continue reading

New York Inanity

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  Prioritize New York! You are getting things mighty backwards. Two recent news stories show how lackadaisical thinking harms public policy. The first was the state’s Attorney general bragging that he had eliminated the plague of realistic-looking toy guns. The other headline was that half of the shootings and 40% of the 300 homicides in New York City alone thus far this year were gang related. Keep in mind that NYC homicides are up over 5% this year (this despite the so-called SAFE Act of 2013, which enacted a wealth of new gun control laws … which appear to be doing nothing). Ponder that. It is likely that toy guns resulted in zero deaths, yet gangs resulted in at least 120, not to mention the non-fatal stabbings, shootings, beatings and other pastimes gangs enjoy. With 375 different street gangs and a rising homicide rate, gangs would be an obvious priority … Continue reading

NYT Fiction

Source states for guns, strict and lax gun control laws

Main Take-aways The “Iron Pipeline” doesn’t exist. Most guns that move from one state to another do so as part of normal human relocation, not trafficking. The time it takes for a gun to slip into criminal use is so long that the problem is local crime control and not interstate gun control. When it comes to gun control, nobody has ever accused the New York Times of honesty or accuracy. I won’t break their losing streak. In a recent bit of editorial effluvium and journalistic malpractice, the NYT penned perilous prose concerning the mythical “Iron Pipeline” of guns migrating into states with strict gun control from states without. The Gun Facts Project has already run the numbers and shown the Iron Pipeline to be both a con job as well as demonstrating the inverse is actually true. In brief, states with strict gun control laws are more likely to … Continue reading

Gangs and Guns

Street gang pentration and population in major cities around the world

America doesn’t have a gun problem, but it sure as heck has a gang problem. Quick Take-Aways America has an insanely high concentration of people in gangs – about 953% higher than other countries (see analysis warnings below). Thankfully these are confined mainly to a few really rank cities. American gang culture is not replicated elsewhere Nearly every study associated gang membership with violent crime (including gun homicides). The Silly Propaganda When the gun control industry starts complaining about American gun violence, they never mention gangs. When someone (like me) mentions gangs to gun control advocates, they dismiss gangs as a non-issue. As someone who has lived next door to Oakland, California I can attest that it is very much an issue (as it is in Barack Obama’s own Chicago). Yet it is very different in America. “European cities lack the strong gang traditions that exist in some large U.S. … Continue reading

Politico Propaganda

Politico-Propaganda

Politico, a publication of dubious integrity, headlined an article saying “Mayors to Congress: ‘Get a Backbone’ and Pass Gun Control.” What Politico didn’t tell you was they stacked the deck. The survey polled highly selected mayors and asked them a few gun control questions. Now, to Politico’s credit – and perhaps the only credit we can give them – they buried in their article the statement “while not scientific …” This is akin to saying the Pope isn’t a Baptist. Here is exactly how this survey sucked. BIASED MAYORS: Anti-gun zealot Michael Bloomberg had an organization called Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG), which he folded into his newer AstroTurf umbrella group Everytown for Gun Safety. A quick check of the responding mayors shows that a full 71% of the cherry-picked mayors are current members of Bloomberg’s group. Another 5% head cities where a previous Mayor was a member. That last bit is important because after many MAIG members were … Continue reading

Obama Bunko

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Speaking to a conclave of top cops, Barack Obama decided to promote gun control (it should be noted this was an international association of primarily politically appointed chiefs, so their opinion does not reflect that of the average patrol officer). In his talk, Obama made several rather insane proclamations. My job is to stomp on his sound bites. 60% of Crime Guns (In Chicago) Come From Out Of State Obama’s gambit was to claim that states with strict gun control laws suffer from guns imported from states with more relaxed laws. We handily disproved this was that case, but also showed that strict states are more likely to import crime guns from other strict states … by a two-to-one ratio. More to the point, in his home state of Illinois, a full 84% of recovered crime guns came from Illinois and another 3% came from states with strict gun control … Continue reading

Newsom’s Nuisance

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Nobody has ever accused California’s Lieutenant Governor of being well informed. Sadly, he insists on proving it. Emboldened by presidential politicians strutting for gun control, Gavin Newsom is supporting a public ballot initiative to bring Californians four new forms of gun control. [EDITOR: It is noted that Newsom is running for Governor] Clear in his proposal is an utter lack of understanding about the nature of crime, violence and guns. Without exception, the proposals will: Do nothing to address the common and recurring forms of gun violence. Possibly push illegal activities to more underground means. Harass and legally imperil legitimate gun owners and hobbyist. So what doesn’t Gavin understand about gun policy? Nearly everything (and this opinion comes from someone who has lived in and around San Francisco for 20 years and watched Newsom’s dementia up close)? His proposals may be ignorant, but the method of announcing his support was … Continue reading

Oregon Observations

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Now that the dust has settled, it is time to make a rational review of the mass murder committed at Umpqua Community College in Oregon. The bullet points (unintentional bad pun) are: Interesting covariance in murder profiles Continued lack of full disclosure hampers finding a solution Initial actions to find a solution A trend in corrupting definitions, aided anti-gun politicians What We Know Though the official investigation is not available as I type, we know a few interesting and disturbing tidbits about the murderer. History of mental illness: This came as no surprise to anyone. Various news reportshave confirmed that the murderer attended a “nonprofit school … geared for special education students with a range of issues from learning disabilities, health problems and autism or Asperger’s Disorder.” His mother’s online posts confirm this. Other news stories quote people describing the murderer’s odd behavior patterns. The Army booted him from boot … Continue reading