California-Nevada Gun Shows – Not What The Media Reported

California gun deaths and injuries rate change before and after gun shows

Page 10 in the appendix is a handy place to put a statement like: No significant relationships existed between gun shows and firearm injuries along known trafficking routes or when California’s 10-day waiting period was excluded. That is where one of many key clues about the lack of viability of a recent piece or research was filed. That tax money from the federal (NIH) and California (U.C. Berkeley) governments was used to generate this paper and the minor media frenzy that followed should give voters something to consider at election time. Key takeaways Raw data shows lower rates of California death and injury after gun shows. Even after questionable adjustments to the data, rates of change in gun misuse were small, possibly within random variations. Controls for other influences (confounding variables) were odd and incomplete. Unexplained, undocumented adjustments leave the quality of the research in grave doubt. No verification that the misused guns … Continue reading

Target on Taradiddle

New York’s attorney general produced a report on crime guns and their alleged rates of trafficking. I cannot say the report is flawed. Instead I must ask “Sweet Jesus, what kind of medications was he swallowing wholesale?!?!?” Major Take-Aways: Half of the crime guns had insufficient data to complete their analysis, so they ignored it. Most crime guns, by an overwhelming margin, still come from New York itself. The report claims that a full half of crime guns come from inside New York. In-state sourced crime guns exist despite New York having so-called “universal background checks“. No attempt was made to study guns that enter the state via normal human relocation, instead assuming such movements were intentional trafficking. Used an arbitrary and statistically inept scoring system to create a “trafficking index”. Demonstrated that their key indicator for trafficked guns accounted for a minority of recovered crime guns. Brushed-over the fact that the lion’s share of crime guns are recovered … 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 A popular con circulating in the gun control debates is that when the state of Missouri repealed their law requiring a permit to buy a handgun, that homicide shot up.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

  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

Obama Bunko

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

evil gavin newsom california

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

Kids, Carrying and Con Jobs

The media was lightly abuzz, echoing without critical review a study that said states with strict gun control laws had fewer kids carrying guns. As with all studies the media fails to study, there is far less here than meets the eye. The report itself has too many lapses to even consider it worthwhile, except perhaps as a case study in poor research methodology. The major defects to this study include: Raw data source and its collection are suspect. Major omissions of U.S. states and territories. Selection of specific years that ignore trends in juvenile gun misuse. Raw Data, Unintentionally Cooked Let’s ignore using the Brady Campaign Scorecard – unlike the authors of the study currently under my microscope – as the definition of good/strict gun control laws. We have repeatedly shown that Brady scores have no correlation to violent crime (while the Gun Facts Non-Brady Scorecard exposes a much … Continue reading

Cali Crossroads

Are gangs on the run in Los Angeles? No, but their violence may be abating, and it has nothing to do with gun control. The state of California (a.k.a. the State of Emergency) recently published a pair of decadal crime reports. Buried in the data is evidence that despite a backward-thinking mania, California has enjoyed a drop in violence without an increase in gun control. At first blush, the decline appears to be uniquely tied to Los Angeles County, and to a brace of 1993 era laws that targeted criminals. The big take away is that from 2005 through 2012 (the latest date for which we can compare Cali stats against the rest of the nation) California violent crime has shrunk impressively. Part of this is due to the fact that the rest of America is not the violent cesspool known as L.A.! SoCal can only improve, edging ever closer … Continue reading

Understand­ing California’s Crime Collapse

Violent crime in California, 1984 through 2011

Some gun control groups claim that California’s drop in violent crime since the early 1990s is due to gun control. But a causal review of California gun-related legislation shows that when violent crime started falling in the Golden State, there was no significant gun control legislation. If not gun control, what then explains the drop in violent crime in general, and firearm crimes in particular starting around 1993. My preliminary research indicates it is traceable to California’s Three Strikes law and the firearm penalty enhancements passed in that same year. But it is worth digging into the data to see if we can understand why. Up to 1993, violent crime in California was significantly higher than the rest of the country. Like most other places, robbery was a leading cause of violent crime. In fact, in the pivot year, robbery accounted for 38% of all violent crime. The rate of robbery as a subset of … Continue reading

False evidence, biased judges

One reason constitutional rights are made inviolate is because judges have been known to violate them. If passed, a California law will be invalidated due to this principle. Cali is considering giving judges to power to take away a person’s guns based on something less than evidence. Known as AB1014 and the Ex Parte Gun Violence Restraining Order bill, the law would empower a judge to revoke the Second Amendment if a person is claimed to be a danger to himself or others. This is one of several knee-jerking reactions to the recent Santa Barbara slashing/shooting/driving homicides homicides. The idea is that is a friend, family member, neighbor or perfect stranger claims you are armed and nuts, the government can take away your firearms. Lack of real evidence is the issue. The law as currently written requires a judge to consider squishy evidence such as written or oral statements by … Continue reading