Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Rime of the Ancient Libertarian

 

“I used to be a registered Libertarian and I have the Gary Johnson yard signs to prove it.” 

Think back into the past with me, back to the dark days of April, 2016. Bernie Sanders has become the first (and I believe only) American Presidential candidate to receive an invitation to meet with the Roman Pope, Hillary Clinton is lapping up primary elections like an old dog about to die, and that joke candidate from the 2012 Presidential election, Donald J. Trump, just won’t stop winning.

This was particularly annoying to a Rand Paul guy like me, who was willing perhaps to throw in with Ted Cruz if Paul wouldn’t stop charging to the Center. This was my first time considering a vote for a major party in a national election, and I felt a sort of thrilled terror at the prospect.

See, I’d just burned my draft Libertarian Party membership card, and proudly filed with the County Recorder as a valued member of No Party.

Three things drove me away from the LP, a party I had supported since I was old enough to pull a lever:

First, Gary Johnson lied to me, both about what he believed and in claiming to be a Libertarian. He kept his mouth shut when he ran in 2012, basically mouthing the Standard Platitudes that guarantee ~1% of the vote. On three occasions after the election, I asked him to go into detail on his philosophy of the 2nd Amendment, and the most I ever got was, “that’s an important issue and we should have a conversation about it”. In 2016 he went off his leash, and became a pandering, liberal parody of Harry Browne;

Second, after voting for Libertarians in all elections for decades, I’d never seen one win;

… and Third, the jab-cross-left uppercut-cross: Donald J. Trump’s first position paper on his website, an absolutist Constitutionalist interpretation of the 2nd Amendment I would have expected to find at a Tea Party rally, coupled with leaked video of a candidate for Chairman of the Libertarian Party, a nudist apparently, delivering a National Convention speech completely naked. Sure, it’s his right and he may have done it on a dare, but this kind of adolescent acting out had been dragging the party down for years, and I couldn’t shake the feeling that every gathering of capital-L Libertarians would basically devolve into a pantomime of a YouTube comment section.

One useful carryover from my days as a dancing naked fat man Libertarian is that I won’t vote against someone, only for someone. Donald Trump’s 2nd Amendment support got me to cheerfully jump on board the Trump Train. I not only bought the MAGA hat and yard signs, I bought them for all my friends too. We all went to his rallies, met his motorcade on its way back to his hotel, attended Mike Pence’s rally at Living Word, and continued to support him even at the cost of mockery, theft and vandalism (all interesting stories in themselves).

Suffice it to say that as a voter who still naively clings to the ancient and obsolete idea that principle has a place in politics, I was happy in supporting Mr. Trump.

Until the bump-stock ban.

And the comments about bypassing due process (and ignoring current law barring the possession of firearms by the mentally ill).

And the disparaging remarks about suppressors.

Now, I know my President has a tendency to rattle off at the mouth without properly thinking things through, so I’ve been giving him the benefit of the doubt. Two of those three points had no force of law so I’ll chalk it up to a basically decent man struggling to understand evil in the wake of a tragedy. However, the Ban was something else–it turned thousands of American Citizens into felons over night. I’ve never owned a bump stock, am unconvinced of their utility, and look at them like those fancy golf clubs that promise to turn you into Tiger Woods overnight. I would have to try real hard to care at all about bump stocks. But in signing that executive order, he gave the left and future presidents the infrastructure and precedent to start banning other accessories. It’s terrible… but I gave him a pass, because he was making moves in other areas I agreed with and I was still resolved to vote for him in 2020.

Now he’s pushing for “red flag” laws, setting up more infrastructure for future gun seizure attempts that Col. Brown has already gone into great detail about, and I’m actually considering what my other options might be in the coming election. Have I been hoodwinked into joining the Establishment by a New York Yankee? Sure I still support many of his other policies, but the one issue that is most important to me, my God-oradained right and responsibility to defend my life and my family with everything I can get my hands on, is under greater threat from the guy I voted for than the guy that preceded him, who I couldn’t stand. Is the light at the end of the tunnel the train I’m on? Are we just going to plow over our Constitutional rights in the name of forward progress? I could use some help on this one guys.

 

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There are 33 comments.

  1. Jarvis Morse-Loyola Coolidge
    Jarvis Morse-Loyola Post author

    It’s not entirely obvious from the picture, but that’s my wife holding her Springfield model 1873 trapdoor rifle next to me.

    • #1
    • August 9, 2019, at 3:58 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  2. Clifford A. Brown Contributor

    Signalman waving wildly at the engineer. Were President Trump’s comments this morning, to the press outside the White House, signs of him applying the brakes, looking to get back on the right track? Or are we in for Crazy Train time?

    President Trump cannot afford to lose the unlikely, not Republican, voters he attracted when the McCains and Romneys failed to drum up enough fear of Obama’s likely actions or support for their own claims. He is playing with fire and needs to hear it from those voters, likely in chants of “Keep Your Word!” at the next rally.

    • #2
    • August 9, 2019, at 4:30 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  3. Jarvis Morse-Loyola Coolidge
    Jarvis Morse-Loyola Post author

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Signalman waving wildly at the engineer. Were President Trump’s comments this morning, to the press outside the White House, signs of him applying the brakes, looking to get back on the right track? Or are we in for Crazy Train time?

    I didn’t catch them, what did he say?

    • #3
    • August 9, 2019, at 4:34 PM PST
    • 1 like
  4. Joseph Stanko Member

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola: Second, after voting for Libertarians in all elections for decades, I’d never seen one win;

    As a former dancing naked fat man Libertarian Party member myself, I have to say: winning elections was never really the point.

    I think that in our 2-party system, third parties don’t really have a meaningful chance to win, but they can still impact politics in two ways:

    1. They serve as vehicles for promoting specific ideas. Freed from the “burden” of actually expecting to win, 3rd party candidates can run on ideological platforms, and in doing so help those ideas reach a wider audience. I was first exposed to a lot of libertarian ideas and authors through the Libertarian Party, and might never have encountered them otherwise.
    2. If they become successful enough, they draw votes away from the major parties, potentially enough to swing elections. While a dangerous tactic, it can force major party candidates to make more of an effort to win back voters defecting to third parties, otherwise they will always tend to drift towards the center.
    • #4
    • August 9, 2019, at 4:46 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  5. Clifford A. Brown Contributor

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola (View Comment):

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Signalman waving wildly at the engineer. Were President Trump’s comments this morning, to the press outside the White House, signs of him applying the brakes, looking to get back on the right track? Or are we in for Crazy Train time?

    I didn’t catch them, what did he say?

    transcript:

    https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/remarks-president-trump-marine-one-departure-59/

    Here are all relevant portions: 

    And, frankly, we need intelligent background checks, okay? This isn’t a question of NRA, Republican, or Democrat. I will tell you, I spoke to Mitch McConnell yesterday. He’s totally onboard. He said, “I’ve been waiting for your call.” He is totally onboard. I spoke to senators that, in some cases, people — friends of mine — but pretty hardline senators. Hardline. And when I say that, I say that in a positive way. Hardline on the Second Amendment. And they understand.

    We don’t want insane people, mentally ill people, bad people, dangerous people — we don’t want guns in the hands of the wrong people. I think that the Republicans are going to be great and lead the charge along with the Democrats.

    […]

    THE PRESIDENT: I think we can get something really good done. I think we can have some really meaningful background checks. We don’t want people that are mentally ill, people that are sick — we don’t want them having guns. Who does?

    Q Mr. President, but if the NRA does not support that effort, will you fight them on it?

    THE PRESIDENT: Well, we’ll see where the NRA will be. But we have to have meaningful background checks. You know, in the case of — in both cases, it’s possible they wouldn’t have been caught.

    But in the one case, we also have to talk about age, because he did things that were very, very bad in Ohio, in Dayton. He did some things that were really bad. His school knew about it. When he turned 18, everything was expunged. We’re going to have to get rid of that because you can’t have that barrier. If they would have had that barrier, they would have been able to see. But because he was a minor, it was expunged. We’re going to have to get rid of that barrier.

    I think this: I think a lot of really meaningful things on background checks will take place, including red flags, including a lot of other very, very important items. And the Republicans are looking at it very seriously. And I really believe that the NRA — I’ve spoken to them numerous times — they’re really good people. They’re great patriots. They love our country. They love our country so much. And, frankly, I really think they’re going to get there also.

    Q Mr. President, when you talked to Wayne LaPierre — you talked to him several times — did he warn you that background checks could cost you, politically? And did you say to him, “Forget politics, we have to do something now”?

    THE PRESIDENT: No. No. I had a good talk with Wayne. And I like Wayne. And, you know — as you know, they supported me very early — far earlier than anybody thought possible, especially me not being a politician. And that support has paid off. We now have two Supreme Court justices that are phenomenal — Kavanaugh and Gorsuch. And, I mean, they’re phenomenal people, and they’re big believers in the Second Amendment, which Wayne is also and which I am.

    I mean, there’s been — there’s been no President that feels more strongly about the Second Amendment than I do. However, we need meaningful background checks so that sick people don’t get guns.

    […]

    Q When you talked about age restrictions to buy guns, 18 months ago you supported buying long guns at the age of 25, raising the age. Are you considering bringing that back now?

    THE PRESIDENT: We’re not talking about anything specific. I can tell you there’s tremendous goodwill for meaningful — I’m talking about “meaningful”; add that word — meaningful background checks so that sick and demented people don’t carry around guns.

    You have to remember — and I’ve said it — it’s a big mental illness problem. And the gun doesn’t pull a trigger. A mind — a sick mind pulls a trigger. So we want to take that out of the equation.

    Q Do you support the Toomey-Manchin bill or the House bill? Will you lift your veto threat?

    THE PRESIDENT: We’re looking at Toomey-Manchin. Actually, if you look, there are many bills that have been put in over a period of four, five years. They went nowhere. But there’s never been a President like President Trump.

    […]

    THE PRESIDENT: Well, my message to young children going back to school is: Go and really study hard, and someday you’ll grow up and maybe be President of the United States or do something else that’s fantastic.

    They have nothing to fear. They have nothing to worry about. In addition, we’re in constant contact with states, with state governments. And they are really doing a great job. We have this so much better than it was two and a half years ago. Two and a half years ago, when I came in, it was really not a good situation. I think we have a very, very good system right now. That doesn’t mean that there’s not going to be some crazy person, but that’s what we want to do. We want to take the guns out of the hands of crazy, demented, sick people.

    Q (Inaudible) assault weapons ban — will you be telling the NRA to stand down?

    THE PRESIDENT: Yeah, we’re not looking at that right now. We’re really looking at very meaningful background checks. I think it’s going to happen. There’s great, great support. But we’re looking at very, very meaningful background checks.

    […]

    Q Is your base supporting background checks?

    THE PRESIDENT: I think my base relies very much on common sense and they rely on me, in terms of telling them what’s happening. I think meaningful background checks — I don’t just say “background checks.” Because we passed background checks a number of times, meaning the Democr- — but everybody knew they weren’t that strong.

    Q Do you want to expand the law?

    THE PRESIDENT: I think meaningful background checks are a real positive. Politically, I can’t tell you. You know, I don’t know — good, bad, or indifferent. I don’t care, politically. I don’t want to have crazy people having guns.

     

    • #5
    • August 9, 2019, at 4:57 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  6. Percival Thatcher

    I agree with some of that.

    I was in the Libertarian Party for a time. I left when I had heard “letters of marque and reprisal” one time too many. The eighteenth century is no place to be retrieving a theory of national defense from.

    Trump is better in that regard, but not by a lot. He appears to be trying to live up to the positions that he took during the campaign. The only one that didn’t make me cringe was dumping the nitwit Iran agreement.

    Bump stocks are garbage. I think they were invented and promoted by ammo manufacturers. Your chance of hitting your target times the number of shots you fire is a constant.

    I do not want the government in charge of determining who is sane enough to possess a firearm. I do not want the government in charge of much of anything at all. 

    • #6
    • August 9, 2019, at 5:00 PM PST
    • 10 likes
  7. Jarvis Morse-Loyola Coolidge
    Jarvis Morse-Loyola Post author

    Joseph Stanko (View Comment):

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola: Second, after voting for Libertarians in all elections for decades, I’d never seen one win;

    As a former dancing naked fat man Libertarian Party member myself, I have to say: winning elections was never really the point.

    Oh, I agree; and I’ve made these arguments myself, enthusiastically and usually as a preface to a game of Tackle the Libertarian. But it sure is nice to win once or twice, and Mr. Trump was aligned with enough of my core beliefs (border security, self defense, pro-life, etc) that I jumped at the chance to vote for him. I want to be able to do so again, but not at the expense of some basic principles that we shouldn’t even have to debate.

    We can all have a conversation on drug policy, the Justice System, whether States have rights or if the City’s bond issues are wise in the long term, but there are some issues I don’t think we should compromise on, and this is one of ’em.

    • #7
    • August 9, 2019, at 5:16 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  8. Jarvis Morse-Loyola Coolidge
    Jarvis Morse-Loyola Post author

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola (View Comment):

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Signalman waving wildly at the engineer. Were President Trump’s comments this morning, to the press outside the White House, signs of him applying the brakes, looking to get back on the right track? Or are we in for Crazy Train time?

    I didn’t catch them, what did he say?

    Q Is your base supporting background checks?

    THE PRESIDENT: I think my base relies very much on common sense and they rely on me, in terms of telling them what’s happening. I think meaningful background checks — I don’t just say “background checks.” Because we passed background checks a number of times, meaning the Democr- — but everybody knew they weren’t that strong.

    It is already a crime to buy a firearm if you have been adjudicated mentally deficient, convicted of a crime of domestic violence, been dishonorably discharged from the Military, been convicted of a felony… the list goes on. There was a time in this country when you could open up your Sears Catalog, send a guy a check and he’d send you a rifle or pistol. Oddly enough there weren’t mass shootings back then. As you yourself point out, any judge with political ambitions isn’t going to nix a protection order on the off chance that the person in question might go off on a rampage anyway. Once again, do we trust our God-given duty to protect ourselves to the political machinery of an ever-changing Government? Are these “strong background checks” any different in effect than China’s Social Credit system? Open question. 

    We’ll see what he does, but as a member of his base I don’t want to be thought of as relying on him or any Government servant for anything. There are some on this Train that seem to be of the opinion that “Trump’ll fix it”. I get it, especially in the wake of his victory, but that seems at odds with American self-reliance. 

    • #8
    • August 9, 2019, at 5:28 PM PST
    • 9 likes
  9. Clifford A. Brown Contributor

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola (View Comment):
    It is already a crime to buy a firearm if you have been adjudicated mentally deficient, convicted of a crime of domestic violence, been dishonorably discharged from the Military, been convicted of a felony… the list goes on.

    Yes, and, both the Feds and states have repeatedly not entered relevant records into the background check system. And this, as Candidate Trump wrote, has nothing to do with the vast majority of crimes committed with guns, where the criminal avoids the background system to avoid calling attention to their criminal record.

    So he is really calling for very little on a very narrow issue, but risking much mischief.

    • #9
    • August 9, 2019, at 6:01 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  10. Joseph Stanko Member

    Percival (View Comment):
    I was in the Libertarian Party for a time. I left when I had heard “letters of marque and reprisal” one time too many. The eighteenth century is no place to be retrieving a theory of national defense from.

    Ha! Yeah, the initial reason I left the LP was that in the wake of 9/11 I no longer believed their policy of isolationism was a realistic strategy to defend us against Islamist terrorism. I’ve since come to disagree with them on other issues as well, and even some core philosophic principles.

    • #10
    • August 9, 2019, at 6:07 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  11. Randy Webster Member

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola (View Comment):
    a game of Tackle the Libertarian.

    Sounds like fun. Do we wear pads?

    • #11
    • August 9, 2019, at 7:36 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  12. Jarvis Morse-Loyola Coolidge
    Jarvis Morse-Loyola Post author

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola (View Comment):
    a game of Tackle the Libertarian.

    Sounds like fun. Do we wear pads?

    No, our only defense is the truth.

    *cringe*

    • #12
    • August 9, 2019, at 7:44 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  13. Stad Thatcher

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Signalman waving wildly at the engineer. Were President Trump’s comments this morning, to the press outside the White House, signs of him applying the brakes, looking to get back on the right track? Or are we in for Crazy Train time?

    President Trump cannot afford to lose the unlikely, not Republican, voters he attracted when the McCains and Romneys failed to drum up enough fear of Obama’s likely actions or support for their own claims. He is playing with fire and needs to hear it from those voters, likely in chants of “Keep Your Word!” at the next rally.

    Don’t forget, Trump starts off by looking like or even saying he’ll work with people on an issue, then turn around and do the right thing in the end. I’m hoping this is another one of those times.

    The bump stock ban doesn’t bother me, but I’d sure like to get some weapons surpressed. Just like Holloywood’s unlimited-magazine-capacity machine guns, their “silencers” give to impression to the average American the gun is totally quiet.

    But wait until laser pistols come out . . .

    • #13
    • August 10, 2019, at 5:49 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  14. Randy Webster Member

    Stad (View Comment):

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Signalman waving wildly at the engineer. Were President Trump’s comments this morning, to the press outside the White House, signs of him applying the brakes, looking to get back on the right track? Or are we in for Crazy Train time?

    President Trump cannot afford to lose the unlikely, not Republican, voters he attracted when the McCains and Romneys failed to drum up enough fear of Obama’s likely actions or support for their own claims. He is playing with fire and needs to hear it from those voters, likely in chants of “Keep Your Word!” at the next rally.

    Don’t forget, Trump starts off by looking like or even saying he’ll work with people on an issue, then turn around and do the right thing in the end. I’m hoping this is another one of those times.

    The bump stock ban doesn’t bother me, but I’d sure like to get some weapons surpressed. Just like Holloywood’s unlimited-magazine-capacity machine guns, their “silencers” give to impression to the average American the gun is totally quiet.

    But wait until laser pistols come out . . .

    They’re called phasers. And you can set them to “stun.”

    • #14
    • August 10, 2019, at 8:54 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  15. Barfly Member

    Libertarianism is the political philosophy of the gifted adolescent. Gifted people who come into political awareness during adolescence, while they are not yet responsible for their own support, naturally feel tied down by the less capable people in their orbit. That leads them to select principles that prize the individual.

    That’s true of both the conservative and the libertine strains. The only thing the two have in common is their recourse to a gerrymandered set of principles and virtues that elevate the individual to a position of maximum freedom. So I consider the two varieties of “libertarianism” to be distinct philosophies. 

    Right-libertarians usually mature into conservatives if they are fortunate enough to experience a smooth transition into adulthood by successfully adopting increasing responsibilities. Adult conservatism is a balance of the individual’s freedom and his responsibilities to his community. People of left-libertarianism remain adolescents, always seeking both freedom from responsibility and the approval of the collective.

    And that’s the big difference. Adults recognize that every right is equally a responsibility, and that all those rights and responsibilities constitute their relationship with their community. Libertines of the left never grow enough to acknowledge the community; they substitute the debased idea of a collective – from which they demand support and approval.

     

    • #15
    • August 10, 2019, at 8:56 AM PST
    • 9 likes
  16. SkipSul Moderator

    Percival (View Comment):
    Bump stocks are garbage. I think they were invented and promoted by ammo manufacturers. Your chance of hitting your target times the number of shots you fire is a constant.

    Bump stocks were actually invented to prove a point about the capriciousness and malleability of the BATFE definitions of “full auto” and “trigger devices”. They a means of demonstrating that the legal definition of what constituted full auto was highly subjective, and selectively applied.

    • #16
    • August 10, 2019, at 9:03 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  17. Percival Thatcher

    SkipSul (View Comment):

    Percival (View Comment):
    Bump stocks are garbage. I think they were invented and promoted by ammo manufacturers. Your chance of hitting your target times the number of shots you fire is a constant.

    Bump stocks were actually invented to prove a point about the capriciousness and malleability of the BATFE definitions of “full auto” and “trigger devices”. They a means of demonstrating that the legal definition of what constituted full auto was highly subjective, and selectively applied.

    The thing is, if you understand what mechanical role the bump stock is performing, you can do the same thing without it. You will miss what you are shooting at, just like you would with a bump stock.

    • #17
    • August 10, 2019, at 10:18 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  18. Jarvis Morse-Loyola Coolidge
    Jarvis Morse-Loyola Post author

    Barfly (View Comment):

    And that’s the big difference. Adults recognize that every right is equally a responsibility, and that all those rights and responsibilities constitute their relationship with their community. Libertines of the left never grow enough to acknowledge the community; they substitute the debased idea of a collective – from which they demand support and approval.

    Ricochet needs a “really like” button.

    • #18
    • August 10, 2019, at 10:20 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  19. Stad Thatcher

    SkipSul (View Comment):
    Bump stocks were actually invented to prove a point about the capriciousness and malleability of the BATFE definitions of “full auto” and “trigger devices”.

    Probably also invented to get around the 1986 machine gun ban, where new fully automatic weapons were banned, but the sale and transfer of existing weapons was still allowed.

    The result of the ban? Prices of existing machine guns rose rapidly (same as the “high capacity” magazine ban), the government gets a nice chunk of charge from those who do own and sell existing machine guns, and as we see, the invention of the bump stock.

    I’d love to own a machine gun, but I wouldn’t shoot it much because you might as well throw money at the target . . .

    • #19
    • August 10, 2019, at 10:37 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  20. SkipSul Moderator

    Stad (View Comment):

    SkipSul (View Comment):
    Bump stocks were actually invented to prove a point about the capriciousness and malleability of the BATFE definitions of “full auto” and “trigger devices”.

    Probably also invented to get around the 1986 machine gun ban, where new fully automatic weapons were banned, but the sale and transfer of existing weapons was still allowed.

    The result of the ban? Prices of existing machine guns rose rapidly (same as the “high capacity” magazine ban), the government gets a nice chunk of charge from those who do own and sell existing machine guns, and as we see, the invention of the bump stock.

    I’d love to own a machine gun, but I wouldn’t shoot it much because you might as well throw money at the target . . .

    The fed doesn’t get that much money from the transfers of full autos, suppressors, or other covered weaponry, just a $200 tax stamp at each transfer. And that tax stamp fee has remained a constant since, I think, the 1930s when it was implemented. At that time, $200 was a big chunk compared to the cost of the firearm, and still was in the 1980s when the registry was closed. Now? It’s peanuts.

    • #20
    • August 10, 2019, at 11:20 AM PST
    • 1 like
  21. Randy Webster Member

    Do I need to break out the Rime of the Modern Surfer again?

    • #21
    • August 10, 2019, at 11:22 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  22. Stad Thatcher

    SkipSul (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    SkipSul (View Comment):
    Bump stocks were actually invented to prove a point about the capriciousness and malleability of the BATFE definitions of “full auto” and “trigger devices”.

    Probably also invented to get around the 1986 machine gun ban, where new fully automatic weapons were banned, but the sale and transfer of existing weapons was still allowed.

    The result of the ban? Prices of existing machine guns rose rapidly (same as the “high capacity” magazine ban), the government gets a nice chunk of charge from those who do own and sell existing machine guns, and as we see, the invention of the bump stock.

    I’d love to own a machine gun, but I wouldn’t shoot it much because you might as well throw money at the target . . .

    The fed doesn’t get that much money from the transfers of full autos, suppressors, or other covered weaponry, just a $200 tax stamp at each transfer. And that tax stamp fee has remained a constant since, I think, the 1930s when it was implemented. At that time, $200 was a big chunk compared to the cost of the firearm, and still was in the 1980s when the registry was closed. Now? It’s peanuts.

    Still $$$ to the Feds . . .

    • #22
    • August 10, 2019, at 2:05 PM PST
    • 1 like
  23. Jarvis Morse-Loyola Coolidge
    Jarvis Morse-Loyola Post author

    Stad (View Comment):

    SkipSul (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    SkipSul (View Comment):
    Bump stocks were actually invented to prove a point about the capriciousness and malleability of the BATFE definitions of “full auto” and “trigger devices”.

    Probably also invented to get around the 1986 machine gun ban, where new fully automatic weapons were banned, but the sale and transfer of existing weapons was still allowed.

    The result of the ban? Prices of existing machine guns rose rapidly (same as the “high capacity” magazine ban), the government gets a nice chunk of charge from those who do own and sell existing machine guns, and as we see, the invention of the bump stock.

    I’d love to own a machine gun, but I wouldn’t shoot it much because you might as well throw money at the target . . .

    The fed doesn’t get that much money from the transfers of full autos, suppressors, or other covered weaponry, just a $200 tax stamp at each transfer. And that tax stamp fee has remained a constant since, I think, the 1930s when it was implemented. At that time, $200 was a big chunk compared to the cost of the firearm, and still was in the 1980s when the registry was closed. Now? It’s peanuts.

    Still $$$ to the Feds . . .

    It is, but I might not be so sore about it if the money from my $200 tax stamp was going to make or break the Treasury. As it is, they’re set to spend 4.7 Trillion Dollars in 2020. I would guess that the Feds will spend more on paperclips in February than they get in revenue from transfer taxes all year.

    Mr. Trump should embrace the Urban Community and eliminate this tax, the only purpose of which can be to keep the poor from owning fancy guns and accessories.

    • #23
    • August 10, 2019, at 4:03 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  24. Barfly Member

    The best argument against public ownership of automatic weapons is economic. If @irb gets one then I’m going to want one, and I spend too much on guns already.

    • #24
    • August 10, 2019, at 4:07 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  25. Jarvis Morse-Loyola Coolidge
    Jarvis Morse-Loyola Post author

    Barfly (View Comment):

    The best argument against public ownership of automatic weapons is economic. If @irb gets one then I’m going to want one, and I spend too much on guns already.

    I remember the first time I heard modern “classical” music, 12-tone atonal nonsense that sounded like a freight train colliding with a National Guard armory. It was a completely new sound, a new way of combining notes and musical ideas that I had never before encountered, never thought possible, and I have to tell you it was a painful, jarring experience. 

    That’s how I feel about the phrase “spend too much on guns”. *grin*

    • #25
    • August 10, 2019, at 4:16 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  26. Randy Webster Member

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):

    The best argument against public ownership of automatic weapons is economic. If @irb gets one then I’m going to want one, and I spend too much on guns already.

    I remember the first time I heard modern “classical” music, 12-tone atonal nonsense that sounded like a freight train colliding with a National Guard armory. It was a completely new sound, a new way of combining notes and musical ideas that I had never before encountered, never thought possible, and I have to tell you it was a painful, jarring experience.

    That’s how I feel about the phrase “spend too much on guns”. *grin*

    Bartok ruined music.

     

    • #26
    • August 10, 2019, at 5:15 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  27. Michael Minnott Member

    What’s shocking isn’t that Trump is considering Red Flag laws, it’s that a bunch of Republicans in the House and Senate are considering them. It seems as if they had them already prepared and were just waiting for the opportunity to implement them.

    They seem far more interested in this than other conservative policies such as reforming entitlements, or going after employers who hire illegals. Funny that they can never get their acts together for those issues, but 15 minutes after a shooting they’re suddenly prepared to burn the Bill of Rights. It seems that the fix was in and they were just waiting for an opportunity to shove it down our throats.

    Trump’s critics on the right complain he’s not a conservative. Apparently the rest of the GOP aren’t conservative either.

    • #27
    • August 10, 2019, at 7:56 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  28. LibertyDefender Member

    I believe it was the summer of 1996, in the backyard of CATO Institute founder Ed Crane, where I met the then-chairman of the Libertarian Party. I asked him if Steve Forbes – who was running for President on a very libertarian platform – were to secure the Republican Party nomination, would the Libertarian Party endorse Steve Forbes.

    Without a second’s hesistation, the Chairman said “No. The Libertarian Party must always define the boundary.”

    Broke my heart. I realized then that the Libertarian Party does not want to be taken seriously. Since that time I’ve seen the Libertarian Party offer up the following clown show-rejected acts:

    • A guy with a rubber boot on his head speaks at multiple LP conventions;
    • The LP nominee states “if marriage is on the menu, then the church must serve it anyone who orders it;”
    • An LP candidate for President strips to his skivvies at the LP convention;

    It’s too depressing to continue. The Libertarian Party doesn’t want to be taken seriously.

    On the other hand, Donald J. Trump has defended religious liberties more staunchly than any President in over a century. His Secretary of Education has made heroic efforts to undo the gross violations of civil liberties on American campuses. Regardless of his lack of fluency in gunspeak, Trump clearly supports the Second Amendment. He has done more than any President in US history to relieve citizens of burdens imposed by the Administrative State.

    Donald J. Trump is not perfect. But he’s a [darned] sight better at protecting individual liberty than any Libertarian Party nominee.

    • #28
    • August 10, 2019, at 8:19 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  29. Stad Thatcher

    Jarvis Morse-Loyola (View Comment):
    It is, but I might not be so sore about it if the money from my $200 tax stamp was going to make or break the Treasury.

    I know what you mean. These various fees the Feds charge for services baffle me, because we employees were paid whether or not we were doing anything.

    • #29
    • August 11, 2019, at 6:16 AM PST
    • 1 like
  30. Manny Member

    The head of the Libertarian Party gave a convention speech naked?? Hahahahaha!!! I did not catch that when it happened. I always said Libertarianism was childish. Well… 

    • #30
    • August 11, 2019, at 12:24 PM PST
    • 1 like