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friendly_iconoclast's Journal - Archives
Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Wed Dec 07th 2011, 10:37 PM

ATF officials didn't intend to publicly disclose their own role in letting Mexican cartels obtain the weapons, but emails show they discussed using the sales, including sales encouraged by ATF, to justify a new gun regulation called "Demand Letter 3". That would require some U.S. gun shops to report the sale of multiple rifles or "long guns." Demand Letter 3 was so named because it would be the third ATF program demanding gun dealers report tracing information.

"Lunacy", eh?
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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Wed Dec 07th 2011, 09:59 PM
Long but worth it, if only to see the sheer volume of denial and revisionism:

(c) that actually gives credence to the theory that F&F was a deliberate plot to build support for gun control by increasing the number of guns that are trafficked to Mexico.

Pay special attention to (c). I'm not looking for a dump of all the stories you can find related to F&F. We all know F&F has been discussed in the media. My point is that this conspiracy theory is right-wing nutcase territory.

On March 30, the 30th anniversary of the assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, Jim Brady, who sustained a debilitating head wound in the attack, and his wife, Sarah, came to Capitol Hill to push for a ban on the controversial “large magazines.” Brady, for whom the law requiring background checks on handgun purchasers is named, then met with White House press secretary Jay Carney. During the meeting, President Obama dropped in and, according to Sarah Brady, brought up the issue of gun control, “to fill us in that it was very much on his agenda,” she said.

“I just want you to know that we are working on it,” Brady recalled the president telling them. “We have to go through a few processes, but under the radar.”

In the meeting, she said, Obama discussed how records get into the system and what can be done about firearms retailers. Her husband specifically brought up the proposed ban on large magazine clips, and she noted that even former vice president Dick Cheney had suggested that some restrictions on the clips might make sense.

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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Wed Dec 07th 2011, 04:41 PM

Egypt's military will have final say on country's new constitution
Scaf generals say they will have final approval over new political system, whatever the outcome of the election

Jack Shenker in Cairo, Wednesday 7 December 2011 13.46 EST

Egypt's ruling generals have put themselves on a collision course with the country's new parliament after declaring that MPs will not have the final say over the drafting of a fresh constitution.

The revelation is likely to escalate tensions once again between the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf) and an increasingly confident Muslim Brotherhood, which looks set to dominate the new assembly once voting is completed and parliament opens for business, in March.

Millions of Egyptians have flocked to the polls in recent days to elect parliamentary representatives, whose primary role is to appoint a special body tasked with drawing up Egypt's first post-Mubarak constitution. But after initial results indicated that political Islamists will form a majority in the new chamber, the military has moved swiftly to rein in their powers and ensure its own well entrenched political and economic privileges remain intact under any future civilian government.

In a rare interview with foreign media, Major General Mokhtar el-Mulla – a leading member of Scaf – said the upcoming parliament would not be representative of all Egyptian people, and that those appointed to write a fresh constitution must also be approved by the interim cabinet and a newly-created "advisory council" of intellectuals, civilian politicians and media personalities, both of which fall under the control of Scaf...

Let's review, shall we?

Egyptians prove gungeon is wrong

Egypt proved there is no need for a 2nd amendment

However, a few of us knew what the 411 was. For example:

Egypt "proves" that a government with a monopoly of force will abuse its power

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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Fri Dec 02nd 2011, 11:33 PM

Justice Dept. Details How It Got Statements Wrong

Justice Dept. Details How It Got Statements Wrong
by The Associated Press

WASHINGTON December 2, 2011, 10:56 pm ET WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department on Friday provided Congress with documents detailing how department officials gave inaccurate information to a U.S. senator in the controversy surrounding Operation Fast and Furious, the flawed law enforcement initiative aimed at dismantling major arms trafficking networks on the Southwest border.

In a letter last February to Charles Grassley, the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Justice Department said that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms had not sanctioned the sale of assault weapons to a straw purchaser and that the agency makes every effort to intercept weapons that have been purchased illegally. In Operation Fast and Furious, both statements turned out to be incorrect....

...In an email four days later to Justice Department colleagues, then-U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke in Phoenix said that "Grassley's assertions regarding the Arizona investigation and the weapons recovered" at the "murder scene are based on categorical falsehoods. I worry that ATF will take 8 months to answer this when they should be refuting its underlying accusations right now." That email marked the start of an internal debate in the Justice Department over what and how much to say in response to Grassley's allegations. The fact that there was an ongoing criminal investigation into Terry's murder prompted some at the Justice Department to argue for less disclosure....

...The emails sent to Capitol Hill on Friday showed that Burke supplied additional incorrect information to the Justice Department's criminal division that ended up being forwarded to Breuer. For example, Burke said that the guns found at the Terry murder scene were purchased at a Phoenix gun shop before Operation Fast and Furious began. In fact, the operation was under way at the time and the guns found at the Terry murder scene were part of the probe. Breuer was one of the recipients of that information. In written comments this week to Grassley, Breuer said that he was on a three-day official trip to Mexico at the time of the Justice Department response and that he was aware of, but not involved in, drafting the Justice Department statements to Grassley. Breuer says he cannot say for sure whether he saw a draft of the letter before it was sent to Grassley....

More details here:

Justice Withdraws Inaccurate 'Fast And Furious' Letter It Sent To Congress / / /

Lots and lots of CYA on evidence, for those willing to dive into this sump of denial, willful ignorance and flat-out mendacity.
This also puts paid to the prior assertions of certain ATF apologists here that the problems with F&F were ginned up by a coalition
of disgruntled ATF agents and Republicans in Congress

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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Canada
Sun Nov 27th 2011, 03:28 PM
Thanks to DUer dipsydoodle for the original. Looks like the UK Tories are dancing to Shell's tune:

UK secretly helping Canada push its oil sands project

Source: The Guardian Sunday 27 November 2011 19.14 GMT
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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Mon Nov 21st 2011, 04:18 PM
Not that they didn't have their problems to begin with (search "Stop Illegal Mayors" for several examples), but I rather think
the Daley-like tactics of their founder, co-leader and chief financier against Occupy Wall Street will doom them.

I note that in contrast to say, two or three years ago, those that applauded MAIG and Bloomie here have said little or nothing
about them recently. They are headed down the same road that the Million Mom March traveled.
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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Sun Nov 13th 2011, 09:26 PM

Crime and Courts: Want to keep guns out of your home? Buy a 'no-gun' sign from the city

...Now that Wisconsin allows people to carry concealed guns, here's one thing you might want to know: That includes your home. That means that everyone from the Mary Kay lady to the plumber can come into your home packing heat, unless you tell them they can't, or unless you post a sign.

The law, which allows people to apply for licenses to carry concealed guns, knives, Tasers and billy clubs, went into effect on Nov. 1.

People who oppose the law -- according to some polls they make up the majority of the state -- might be put off at having to stick a sign on their door to keep guns out of the home. But I think it beats having to tell everyone who comes to the door that they need to put their gun in the car.

So I'm going to buy a sign, which are being sold at the Madison City Clerk's office in Room 103 of the City-County Building at 210 Martin Luther King Blvd., from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The sign, a 5-inch-by-7-inch vinyl sticker, costs $5....

What's the over/under for the first example of some place with one of these signs being robbed or burgled?

I'd put it at "before the year is out".
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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Thu Nov 10th 2011, 06:04 PM
Got a Supreme Court decision or proposed law you don't like? Go ahead and lie- it's to save innocent lives, dontcha know?:

Dear Friend,

As early as next week, the U.S. House of Representatives will vote on dangerous gun lobby legislation, H.R. 822, which would force your state to allow dangerous and violent individuals from out-of-state to carry loaded guns in your community.

E-mail your U.S. Representative today!

"Vote 'NO' on H.R. 822. Stop dangerous people from packing heat on my street."

If the Washington gun lobby and their allies in Congress get their way, your state will no longer be able to make its own decisions about who can carry a hidden, loaded gun.

Domestic abusers, drug addicts, stalkers, people with violent arrest records, or people with absolutely no training, could be granted a concealed gun permit in another state, and your state would have to honor it — no matter what.

Discussed further on this thread:

Euromutt (1000+ posts) Tue Nov-08-11 09:53 PM
Response to Original message
32. "Domestic abusers, drug addicts, stalkers..." So, people prohibited from possessing firearms?
Federal law and the laws of many (possibly all, for all I know) states prohibit the aforementioned people from possessing firearms, and by extension, they can't carry concealed. "People with violent arrest records" are a different matter, of course, because an arrest does not equal a conviction, and as long as we pay lip service to presumption of innocence and due process in this country, merely being arrested for something is not evidence of wrongdoing.

So what I'm wondering is, are the folks at the Brady Bunch willfully pig-ignorant, or are they fucking liars? Not that it really matters, since there's no excuse for either.

Looks like they picked up the "faith-promoting rumor" schtick fom the anti-abortion crowd:

The truth is better advice
By Yvonne Abraham | November 10, 2011

...Take, for example, those antiabortion rights outfits called Crisis Pregnancy Centers, which have set up shop across the country, including Massachusetts. A report released yesterday by NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts shows you don’t need a ballot to undermine Roe v. Wade: A flexible view of the truth works, too.

In the NARAL study, volunteers posing as women with unwanted pregnancies called or visited 24 of the state’s Crisis Pregnancy Centers for advice. There, they found what they described as deception and misinformation....

....Some of the women visiting these centers have no idea what they’re walking into. Inside, counselors promptly set about trying to dissuade them from having abortions, often by giving them medical misinformation in addition to moral pressure. For example, at a third of the centers, staff members said abortion may cause infertility or ectopic pregnancies in the future, an extremely rare complication. A video at one center made the bogus claim that most women are infertile after abortion.

Volunteers were also told that abortion increases the risk of breast cancer. One counselor told a NARAL volunteer the risk increased by close to 100 percent. Not true, according to the National Cancer Institute. Teresa Larkin - president of A Woman’s Concern, which runs several crisis pregnancy centers - said they changed their materials once the Institute discredited the cancer link. But plenty of other centers and their websites continue to insist that abortion gives women a 50 percent higher chance of developing breast cancer...

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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Wed Nov 02nd 2011, 05:24 PM

SENATOR DIANNE FEINSTEIN: There's been a lot said about Fast and Furious. And perhaps, mistakes were made, but I think this hunt for blame doesn't really speak about the problem. And the problem is anybody can walk in and buy anything - .50 caliber weapons, sniper weapons - buy them in large amounts

I do like the use of weasel words: "And perhaps, mistakes were made...".
Wouldn't want an examination of government wrongdoing to interfere with the important stuff, would we?

This hearing also discussed at:
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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Mon Oct 17th 2011, 12:47 PM

(Note: emphasis added)

SWAT Weapons Stolen, Including Submachine Guns


9:38 a.m. PDT, October 17, 2011
LOS ANGELES (KTLA ) -- A cache of weapons was stolen from a building used by the Los Angeles Police Department's SWAT unit, including submachine guns and handguns...

...Members of the SWAT team were scheduled to train at the facility on Thursday morning when they were discovered missing. Thieves cut through bolt locks on an outside door and two internal doors, and forced their way through a metal roll gate, Downing said.

The facility was not equipped with surveillance cameras and did not have a security guard, but was considered safe, according to Downing.

The guns included 21 MP-5 submachine guns and 12 large caliber handguns which had been altered to fire only blanks. However, police say it would be relatively easy to convert them back to lethal use...

10:1 says it's an inside job.
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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Mon Oct 10th 2011, 10:47 PM
From the Department of Be Careful What You Hope For, Because You Might Just Get It:

.......The new law exempts peace officers, hunters and people attending gun shows or going to shooting ranges from its penalties of up to a year in prison and a $1,000 fine. It does not prohibit the public carrying of unloaded long-barrel weapons such as rifles — a silence that open-carry advocates say they will exploit.

Yih-Chau Chang, an open-carry practitioner in the Bay Area, said he was disappointed but not surprised by Brown's action. He also said it would not stop him and others from publicly demonstrating their rights.

"Come Jan. 1," he said, "you will see us out there carrying unloaded rifles and shotguns."

You lot were so busy congratulating yourselves about the ban on open carry of unloaded handguns you forgot to notice that
the new law exempted long arms. Fortunately, the OC activists noticed, and they plan on taking full advantage of it. And
they should be treated just like the OWS protesters- If they don't break the law, there are no grounds for their arrest.

And as has been seen before with them, if some overzealous cop decides to arrest them anyway, said cop and their LE agency
will soon be facing a lawsuit or lawsuits.

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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Fri Sep 30th 2011, 12:38 PM

"Gunwalker" allegation: ATF target was FBI informant

Confidential sources have told Congressional investigators that a main target ATF was trying to identify in Fast and Furious was actually a DEA confidential informant working with the FBI.

That twist is just part of the new information included in a letter from Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) and Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) addressed directly to Attorney General Eric Holder, who has indicated he neither knew of nor approved of the "gunwalking" operation that allegedly allowed thousands of weapons to be sold to suspected traffickers for Mexican drug cartels.

According to Grassley and Issa, if the DEA and FBI had shared information with ATF, "then Operation Fast and Furious may have ended as many as ten months sooner than it did. This would have prevented hundreds of assault-type weapons from being illegally straw purchased on behalf of Mexican drug cartels."...

...It says while ATF was trying to identify the unnamed financier behind a gun trafficking ring leader named Manuel Celis-Acosta, the DEA and FBI already knew who the financier was - and had in fact turned him into a confidential informant. Yet, the letter states, the financier was allowed to continue to purchase weapons from Acosta over the course of a year, without ATF ever knowing that the man they were seeking to identify... was a government informant....

Class, can we say 'clusterfuck'?...

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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Fri Sep 30th 2011, 12:32 PM

ATF Fast and Furious guns turned up in El Paso

By Richard A. Serrano, Washington Bureau

September 29, 2011
Reporting from Washington— A cache of assault weapons lost in the ATF's gun-trafficking surveillance operation in Phoenix turned up in El Paso, where it was being stored for shipment to Mexico, according to new internal agency emails and federal court records.

Forty firearms along with ammunition magazines and ballistic vests were discovered in Texas in January 2010 during the early stages of the program, meaning the firearms vanished soon after the program began....

....According to an ATF document, Sean Christopher Steward bought the 40 AK-47-type assault rifles on Dec. 24, 2009, from the Lone Wolf Trading Co. gun store in Glendale, a suburb of Phoenix. The cache was part of 290 firearms ultimately acquired by Steward, a convicted drug felon, during the Fast and Furious operation.

According to ATF emails and a federal court affidavit, El Paso police officers tracking alleged drug smuggling from Mexico followed a dark blue Volkswagen Jetta as it backed into a garage at a residence on Jan. 13, 2010. The driver was identified as Alberto Sandoval. Police later searched the vehicle and found the weapons and other devices....

This just keeps getting worse and worse...
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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Mon Sep 26th 2011, 11:13 PM

White House answers Congress in Gunwalker

...On September 9th, Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) and Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) asked the White House to make former National Security Advisor Kevin O'Reilly available for an interview before the end of September to help "determine the extent of the involvement of White House staff in Operation Fast and Furious."

Emails already obtained by Congress show O'Reilly communicated about gun trafficking efforts with then-Special Agent in Charge of ATF's Phoenix office William Newell as early as summer of 2010. In the email exchanges O'Reilly asked Newell if it was okay to share the information with other White House staffers. Congressional investigators are seeking all related communications.

The new letter from the President's counsel doesn't say O'Reilly can't be interviewed by Congressional investigators, but neither does it provide an availability date. Instead the letter states that

O'Reilly, who has moved from the White House to the State Department from where he was tasked, is "currently on a previously scheduled assignment to Iraq."...

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Posted by friendly_iconoclast in Guns
Mon Sep 26th 2011, 10:53 PM
I say "If", because there is as yet no non-Murdochian source for this. But if it is true --and the documents at the link are not forgeries-- this is turning into a North American version of Iran-Contra.

Another F&F ‘bombshell’ and a familiar name rises to surface
Dave Workman, Seattle Gun Rights Examiner

While Congressional and public attention is focused on Monday’s revelation that taxpayer money was used to purchase several, AK-style firearms that were subsequently allowed to “walk” into the hands of suspected gun runners, there are two key details to this story that should not be overlooked.

First, according to Congressional sources, the case reported Monday about taxpayer money being used by an ATF agent working undercover to directly purchase guns is apparently not a Fast and Furious case but a separate case. More about that in a moment....

...But the Dodson purchase, under Voth’s orders, was done under a different case number than the Fast and Furious investigation. Fast and Furious’ case number is 785115-10-0004, while the case involving Dodson’s gun buy is numbered 785115-10-0020. They can be viewed at this Fox News link: /

A minor detail? No, a major one, because it shows that Fast and Furious was evidently not the only questionable operation mounted in Phoenix under Voth’s watchful eye. We now have two identifiably separate cases that apparently put guns into the wrong hands deliberately. This no longer appears to be a "botched" operation so much as it looks like these guns were deliberately allowed to make it into criminal hands, critics assert....
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