Category Archives: 074 Politics and Culture

Help available for McHenry County residents seeking FOID, concealed carry cards

“WOODSTOCK – State Rep. Jack D. Franks, D-Marengo, said residents can contact his constituent service office for assistance in completing applications for Firearm Owners Identification cards and concealed carry permits.

‘With the elimination of paper applications for FOID cards and concealed carry permits, it has become more difficult for many Illinoisans to exercise their Second Amendment rights,’ Franks said. ‘Seniors and others without access to the Internet have been burdened by this change.’

Beginning March 16, the Illinois State Police phased out the use of paper applications for concealed carry permits and FOID cards; the applications can now only be processed online.

Residents who need individual assistance or who cannot complete the applications because they lack Internet access can visit Franks’ constituent service office to complete their applications. Franks’ office at 1193 S. Eastwood Dr. in Woodstock is open weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Appointments are not necessary…”

(Via.) Northwest Herald <—Read more here

Chris Christie calls for ‘the right balance’ on gun rights – Adam B. Lerner – POLITICO

“Chris Christie took a centrist tone on guns Wednesday, calling for the ‘right balance’ between gun control and the Second Amendment.

‘We’ve got to make sure we have public safety, but on the other hand we have to protect people’s rights both as sportsmen and hunters and for self protection too, find the right balance,’ Christie told a group of New Hampshire voters at Chez Vachon in Manchester, according to New Jersey newspaper The Record.

The comments came just over a week after news broke that the New Jersey Republican governor was not invited to address the NRA’s annual conference in Nashville last weekend. The other prominent GOP 2016 contenders were invited, with the exception of Sen. Rand Paul.”

(Via.) POLITICO

Country Singers Tim McGraw, Billy Currington Headlining Gun Control Fundraiser

“On July 17, country singers Tim McGraw and Billy Currington will headline a fundraiser for gun control group Sandy Hook Promise in Connecticut.

Sandy Hook Promise was founded after Adam Lanza stole various firearms then carried out a heinous attack on Sandy Hook Elementary.

NBC Connecticut quoted McGraw as saying:

Out of this tragedy a group was formed that made a promise to honor the lives lost and turn it into a moment of transformation. Sandy Hook Promise teaches that we can do something to protect our children from gun violence. I want to be a part of that promise – as a father and as a friend.

McGraw’s ‘A Concert For Sandy Hook Promise’ will also feature country singers Billy Currington and Chase Bryant.”

(Via.) Breitbart <—Read more here

SSI Exclusive: Negotiating Rights Away. Cynical Secret “Deal With The Devil” Confirmed. NRA, ATF& bi-partisan group of politicians agree to save ATF

“SSI Exclusive: Negotiating Rights Away. Cynical Secret ‘Deal With The Devil’ Confirmed. NRA, ATF& bi-partisan group of politicians agree to save ATF from itself and widen the definition of ‘sporting purposes.’ ‘A hole big enough to drive Diane Feinstein’s limousine through.’

From the press room of the NRA National Meeting, Nashville, TN: Sipsey Street Irregulars can now confirm the broad outlines of a story first disclosed two days ago by National Gun Rights Examiner columnist David Codrea. Last week, a secret deal involving the National Rifle Association lobbying arm and brokered by politicians of both national political parties was struck in Washington DC that would save the ATF from the political and legal consequences of its own regulatory errors. In the process, this deal would broaden the language of the 1968 Gun Control Act regarding ‘sporting purposes’ and allow ATF to extract itself from the potentially catastrophic political damage of enforcing its arbitrary ruling that makes every owner of a pistol grip 12 Gauge shotgun like the Mossberg Cruiser a felon in possession of a ‘destructive device’ subject to the penalties of the National Firearms Act of 1934 — currently up to 10 years in federal prison and a quarter million dollar fine.”

(Via.) Sipsey Street Irregulars: <—Read more here

The Awful Implications of Hillary’s Candidacy

“The Clinton campaign for president is going to shake out the same way that the Obama candidacy did. In the end, its primary appeal will be to identity politics. Voters will be asked to make possible a historic advance for women. Only this way, we will be told, can we as a nation (people, humanity, whatever) put to rest a long history of subjugation and exclusion.

The history is correct but the solution is not. There is nothing necessarily wrong with cheering the election of a woman president. What’s incorrect is the belief that a woman president will make women’s lives better. Getting someone who shares your identity into power does nothing to improve your life. And if you look at Hillary’s sexual politics — most egregiously mandated equal pay — it will do much to set back the advancement of women in economic life and society. “

(Via.) Beautiful Anarchy <—Read more here

Is the U.S. Government So Powerful that the Second Amendment is Pointless?

Finger explains why the gun collectivists are wrong and concludes:

“Before I finish, I’d like to make a few things clear. This writing is not a call for revolution. If that has been your take-away, you’ve misunderstood me. I, and most everyone else in this country, have plans for the future which require stability and will never come to fruition in a war zone. I’m simply trying to inform the two people who will ever read this that, once again, the gun debate is not as ‘black and white’ as some believe, and many of the arguments against guns are based entirely in ignorance and hearsay. My only goal is to provide a drop of truth in a sea of fallacy and misinformation. Rest assured, anybody who claims that guns should be further restricted or banned in this country because, ‘You can’t beat the government anyway,’ has no real understanding of the issue.

Those who founded this country were able to do so only after waging war against their own government, which had become irreversibly oppressive and corrupt. Being well aware of the dangers of concentrated power and its detrimental effect on personal freedom, they wanted only to erect a system of government that could be kept in check by limiting its power, and its ability to acquire it. The rights outlined in the Bill of Rights were included because they are the rights that, among others, have the most profound impact on the peoples’ ability to remain free in mind and body. And, indeed, they are the same rights that must first be lost in order for those who seek power and true control to achieve that goal.”

(Via.) GunsAmerica Digest <—Read more here

Ron Paul’s Texas Straight Talk 4/13/15: You Are the New Enemy

“So who is the real enemy? The Russians?

No, the real enemy is the taxpayer. The real enemy is the middle class and the productive sectors of the economy. We are the victims of this new runaway military spending. Every dollar or euro spent on a contrived threat is a dollar or euro taken out of the real economy and wasted on military Keynesianism. It is a dollar stolen from a small business owner that will not be invested in innovation, spent on research to combat disease, or even donated to charities that help the needy.

One of the most pervasive and dangerous myths of our time is that military spending benefits an economy. This could not be further from the truth. Such spending benefits a thin layer of well-connected and well-paid elites. It diverts scarce resources from meeting the needs and desires of a population and channels them into manufacturing tools of destruction. The costs may be hidden by the money-printing of the central banks, but they are eventually realized in the steady destruction of a currency.

The elites are terrified that peace may finally break out, which will be bad for their profits. That is why they are trying to scuttle the Iran deal, nix the Cuba thaw, and drum up a new ‘Red Scare’ coming from Moscow. We must not be fooled into believing their lies.”

(Via.) Liberty Crier <—Read more/listen to the talk here

New York’s expensive startup initiative only created 76 jobs

“When Governor Andrew Cuomo launched Start-Up New York in late 2013, his office called it a ‘game-changing’ initiative that promised ‘a windfall’ of innovation. The program established 356 tax-free zones in order to ‘attract high-tech and other start-ups.’ However, a new report from the state’s Department of Economic Development found that the initiative only created 76 jobs in 2014, despite a $28 million ad campaign.

Cuomo’s senior economic aide told Capital New York that 76 jobs was ‘a good number that we can stand behind,’ and it was only a matter of time before the other jobs materialized.

The zones created by Start-Up New York were tied to 62 sponsoring colleges and universities. The program allowed companies to operate tax-free for 10 years ‘on eligible campuses and spaces.’ According to the report, those 76 jobs came from 30 companies in industries like software, biotech, and manufacturing. The companies were supposed to invest $91 million over five years, but only invested $1.7 million.”

(Via.) The Verge

Guns in Schools for Student Safety

“Patrick Neville was a sophomore at Columbine High School when two peers, Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris, murdered 12 students and a teacher before taking their own lives.

Neville is now a Republican Representative from Castle Rock. On Monday, 16 years after surviving one of the deadliest school shootings in U.S. history, he will defend a bill to allow anyone with a concealed carry permit to bring a firearm to school.

‘I remember fathers coming up to me whose sons I knew well, asking where they were,’ said Neville. ‘People I’d known since elementary school are no longer with us today. I think some of the staff who were heroic in so many ways that day, if they’d had the ability to equip themselves, some of my friends might still be with us.’

Neville said the trauma of the Columbine shooting not only motivated this bill but changed how he thought about life in general.”

(Via.) The Colorado Independent

Bill for concealed carry in evacuations headed to Gov. Rick Scott

More common sense gun deregulation legislation is looking likely in Florida, as the Tampa Bay Times reports: “TALLAHASSEE — Floridians soon could be allowed to carry a concealed weapon in the first two days of an emergency evacuation, even if they don’t have a concealed license to do so.

The House approved SB 290 by an 86-26 vote Thursday, sending the bill to Gov. Rick Scott.

Supporters, backed by the Florida Sheriff’s Association, say the legislation is necessary so lawful gun owners can take their weapons with them to avoid looting after a natural disaster.

‘Imagine the thousands and thousands of weapons that are going to be left alone in people’s homes when police are not available and first responders are slow in responding,’ said Rep. Julio Gonzalez, R-Venice.”

Of course the proposed legislation has kicked the hyperbole of the gun centralizers and hoplophobes into high gear. Fortunately, more people are seeing through their fear mongering and relegating their message to the trash bin of ideas where it properly resides.  

(Via.) Tampa Bay Times <—Read more here

The Costs of Hysteria

“Suppose the scientific consensus on climate change is right. Let’s also stipulate, for the sake of argument, that the computer projections used by the United Nations and the US government are correct, and that economists are able to translate those data into meaningful projections about costs and benefits to people living in the future with climate change.

Despite what the public has been led to believe, the situation is not a crisis at all — and certainly not something that demands drastic government actions to avert serious damage to the environment. In fact, implementing the wrong policy can cause far more damage than it can prevent.”

(Via.) Foundation for Economic Education <— Read more here

Penn Jillette Can’t Have His Gay Wedding Cake and Eat It Too

“Popular entertainer and self-described libertarian Penn Jillette disappointed many liberty advocates in this recent CNN Tonight segment. The discussion was nominally about homosexuality and Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, but the real issue at stake was and will continue to be freedom of association.

The controversy stems from cases where business owners have refused for religious reasons to sell engaged gay couples wedding cakes and flowers. For example the owner of a bakery in Colorado was sued by a gay couple for refusing to bake a wedding cake for them. The court ordered him to bake wedding cakes for same-sex couples, give his staff anti-discrimination law training, and submit quarterly reports to the state’s Civil Rights Commission confirming that he is complying with the government’s orders.

Jillette unfortunately fell into the trap of making this issue about religion and homosexuality: ‘You’re not talking about forcing people to engage in gay sex, or even endorse gay sex. We’re asking them that maybe they can treat people the same as other people, and that does not seem unreasonable. It’s okay, I suppose — although goofy – to be against gays, but it’s not okay to be against people who simply want to use your services.’ “

(Via.) Liberty.me <—Click here to read more

Greg Gutfeld: Gun Control Losing Because Americans Refuse to Feel Guilty over Self-Defense

“On April 3, Fox News’ host Greg Gutfeld explained that the media’s gun control arguments increasingly fall on deaf ears because Americans refuse to feel guilty over using guns for self-defense.

Gutfeld said, ‘No matter how hard the establishment media tries, they can’t convince good people how bad guns are when they’re in the right hands.’

He then explained that the American people, while supportive of the police, have simply come to realize that there are long seconds–and frequently, agonizing minutes–between the time they dial 911 and the time police arrive. Moreover, he stressed that Americans understand that in many instances the police will only be coming to count bodies–that any defense that is going to happen has to happen before badges, handcuffs, or sirens are on the scene.

Gutfeld suggested the gun control media’s inability to understand these things has only placed greater distance between their esoteric arguments and the American people. He said:

Perhaps the media misses the big point. They do their theorizing from the fish bowl of a well-protected studio and travel to and from work at reasonable hours through tiny neighborhoods in secure vehicles. The fine people of Detroit don’t have that luxury; they realize that any argument against arming yourself is full of holes, which is not the way they’d like to end up being.

Empirical support for Gutfeld’s claims can be seen in the pro-gun attitude taking hold in Detroit’s heavily black community right now. Breitbart News recently reported that concealed carry is surging in the black community, and no less a prominent figure than Detroit Police Chief James Craig explained that this is a seismic shift from how things have been historically.”

(Via.) Breitbart <— Read more here

New York Deputy Slaps Citizen for Not Allowing him to Search Car

“In a Facebook message interview with Photography is Not a Crime, Roberts explained that he and his buddy, Colin Fitch, who owns the car, had parked it at a business that was closed and walked to a nearby party Thursday night. They didn’t spend much time at the party but when they walked back to the car, they were confronted by deputies who had spotted a rifle in the back seat and wanted to search the car.

Fitch had purchased a .22 rifle earlier that day and had left in the back seat, Roberts said.

When Deputy Glans asked to search the car, Fitch would not give him permission, insisting he had done nothing illegal.

‘We’ll get a fucking search warrant, alright,’ Glans said. ‘Wanna do that?’’Let me see your fucking keys,’ Glans said.

‘Why?’ Fitch responded.

‘I’m going to search your fucking car, that’s why,’ Glans replied.

‘You can’t do that,’ Fitch said.

‘Wanna fucking resist?,’ Glans said before striking him.

‘If you have nothing to hide in there, we’re just going to check and be on our fucking merry way. Understand? Asshole.’”

 

(Via.) PINAC

What Happens After A Mega Corporation Raises Its Workers’ Wages

“Earlier today, McDonalds announced that it would become the latest company to raise hourly pay for 90,000 workers by more than 10% and add benefits such as paid vacation for its restaurant workers. Specifically, starting in July, MCD will pay at least $1 per hour more than the local legal minimum wage for employees at the roughly 1,500 restaurants it owns in the U.S. The increase will lift the average hourly rate for its U.S. restaurant employees to $9.90 on July 1 and more than $10 by the end of 2016, from $9.01 currently. Finally, McDonald’s also will enable workers after a year of employment to accrue up to five days of paid time-off annually.

With this announcement, McDonalds joins the following companies which have likewise raised minimum wages in recent months:

  • WalMart
  • Aetna
  • Gap
  • Ikea
  • Target
  • TJ Maxx

Surely this is great news for the workers of these above companies, as some of the massive wealth accrued by corporate shareholders may be finally trickling down to the lowliest of employees, right? As it turns out, the answer is far from clear.

As the following WSJ story released overnight, here is what happens when mega-corporations such as WalMart and McDonalds, whose specialty are commoditized products and services and have razor thin margins, yet which try to give an appearance of doing the right thing, raise minimum wages. They start flexing their muscles, and in the process trample all over the companies that comprise their own cost overhead: their suppliers and vendors…”

(Via.) Zero Hedge <—Read the rest of the article here

The Liars that are Attempting to Sell an Article V Convention to the Conservative Base…

“Mark Levin and other promoters of an Article V Convention are flat out liars. This is the only determination one can conclude when looking at their advertisements and marketing schemes and presentations….the only reasonable deduction you can make when listening to Michael Farris’, Mark Levin’s, Mark Meckler’s, and other promoters’ presentations on the Convention of States Project. I know of no other way to put this. There is no chance whatsoever that these attorneys, supposedly trained in Constitutional law, are telling their audiences the truth. I would say the same of those who have been brought into market Article V as sales experts. The very best thing you can feebly attempt to say is they are half-truth tellers. It’s the second half that is full of lies.

I have a copy of the Constitution here with me where it is read frequently. You might want to criticize my lack of legal degree, but I know a liar when I hear one. And I can understand it when someone is using false premises and using illogical conclusions. The holes in the Convention of States’ and others’ propositions (amendments), are so large you could drive a semi-truck with a piggy-back trailer through them—that is IF you know what is in the Constitution. Of the many, you can find two of these holes here and here.

In previous articles I have described just some of the money behind this attempt to hijack the Constitution. Here, here, and here

There are more links below to help you see more of that, if you wish to pursue the scurrilous trail on this.

I am adding to the Convention of States the rest of the Article V Convention proponents because I (and you) might as well lump them in with the rest of the liars who are desperately trying to convince the American public that our Constitution isn’t just quite good enough or to their liking, or is too antiquated, or is just not pertinent to our current circumstance, or is not anything enough, or wasn’t legal in the first go ’round, or…..on and on. I know this is a disheartening piece of news to some people who wanted badly to believe that the Convention of States was the magic bullet. But sadly, COS is just as corrupt as the others wanting their hands on the Constitution since the 1960’s. Ford Foundation – Tugwell’s New States Constitution.’

Liars always want something from you. This falls into many categories. They might want your money, your admiration, power over you, or just to get away with something. In this case, however, these liars are playing a high stakes game with your life in an arena that they want to convince you is ‘their playground.’ Your role, they suggest, is to promote them and then stand back while they work their ‘magic.’ They tell you often how educated and experienced they are. They tell you, ‘If only you’ll buy my book,’ or ‘If only you’ll proselytize on my behalf,’ or ‘If only you’ll tell the legislatures to do what I ask,’ or ‘If only you’ll donate some money,’ etc…”

(Via.) Freedom Outpost: <— Read the rest of the story here

For Privacy or Transparency, Bitcoin Benefits Liberty

“Proponents of Bitcoin, myself included, tend to focus on the potential for privacy it offers against increasing government intrusion into our financial affairs. But Bitcoin is not only a tool for those who wish to remain hidden—scofflaws, paranoid conspiracy nuts, crypto-anarchists, and of course the ever-present three-headed bogeyman of terrorists, drug dealers, and child abusers. It is also a tool for those who value transparency. Does that sound like a paradox? Well, it isn’t. A major characteristic of a technology that increases freedom is that it can be used for a widely varying range of choices.

I’ll talk a bit more about how that works in the case of Bitcoin later on, but first I’d like to submit as evidence for the transparency benefits of Bitcoin the recent discovery of extensive corruption on the part of two government agents involved in the Silk Road seizure. The agents—DEA agent Carl Mark Force IV and Shaun W. Bridges of the Secret Service—are allegedly jointly responsible for, amongst other crimes, the misappropriation and laundering of over a million dollars worth of bitcoin (estimated at the price at which they would have sold at the time they were obtained) confiscated from the Silk Road website. Carl Force was also a major investor in, and employee of, Bitcoin exchange CoinMTK while involved in the case, and is accused of having stolen customer funds while there.”

(Via.) Bitcoin Benefits Liberty <— Read the rest of the story here

Wikileaks reveals one of the most controversial chapters of Obama’s big Asia trade deal

What could possibly go wrong? Thank God for that bipartisanship, right?

“TPP proponents, which include both President Obama and many congressional Republicans, say the dispute settlement mechanism is a way to prevent countries from discriminating against foreign firms. Indeed, the leaked chapter lays out that a country must give foreign investors treatment ‘no less favorable than that it accords, in like circumstances, to its own investors.’

But opponents, including some congressional Democrats, say it gives corporations too much power. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren has argued that, among other things, ISDS undermines sovereignty by allowing foreign companies to attack US laws and regulations outside the US court system. Warren also fears ISDS could weaken environmental and labor laws.”

(Via.) Vox

How Gun Rights Harm the Rule of Law — The Atlantic

The Atlantic misses the mark on this story, not shocking due tot he fact it’s a hit piece on your rights.

“But this also has social consequences. Thanks to Stand Your Ground, citizens must now fear their armed neighbors in addition to prospective criminals. What if someone who spies you walking down the street thinks you look suspicious? What if you become a target for would-be George Zimmermans? Or what if the man you argue with, or potentially insult or offend, even unintentionally, is armed and irascible—and the argument escalates? Related Story

The Secret History of Guns

The latter possibility was chillingly illustrated in a movie theater in Tampa last year, when retired police captain Curtis Reeves shot and killed Chad Oulson after the two had argued, and Oulson threw popcorn in Reeves’ face. Reeves initially invoked Stand Your Ground, claiming he did not know if Oulson meant him bodily harm. Florida’s Stand Your Ground law protects gun owners if they so much as sense the threat of bodily harm. In the darkened movie theater, Reeves said he could not tell the nature of his assailant’s weapon—he didn’t know that Oulson was only throwing popcorn. In a Stand Your Ground society, it makes sense to suspect your neighbor—and fear the worst.”

(Via.) The Atlantic

California Need Prices More Than Rain:

“As Alex Tabarrok points out, California has plenty of water. What it doesn’t have are prices — or rather, market prices. Although a lot of well-meaning people insist that water is a right, I notice that my ‘right to water’ in no way changes the fact I have to pay the government monopoly for it ($44.91 last month). So even if there is a right to water, as Tabarrok quotes Matt Kahn, there is no natural right to always pay half a cent per gallon for it, regardless of supply or demand.

The price controls and subsidies for water use also have behavioral consequences:

As David Zetland points out in an excellent interview with Russ Roberts, people in San Diego county use around 150 gallons of water a day. Meanwhile in Sydney Australia, with a roughly comparable climate and standard of living, people use about half that amount. Trust me, no one in Sydney is going thirsty.”

(Via.) Foundation for Economic Education

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