Thursday, February 4, 2016

More pearl-clutching from Cracked.

This time it's about how scary the internet is!

For a change of pace... at least they're not whining about guns.

Basically here they are being shocked, shocked about things that are illegal online.

Commence the pearl clutching!

The hilarious part about this is the writer's shock about people being able to buy Brass Knuckles and knives online is that he thought they were already illegal!

Yes it is like someone fretting about the "Demon Rum" or the "Evils of Porn" finding that mail-order exists.

What's cute is the writer getting the vapors over these products being illegal in the first place belies that his concern is merely that such things are sold online. (I mean since there's no background check or prohibited persons class for knives...)

But wait! The article's #1 freakout is on "drug paraphernalia". Yes Cracked is freaking out that bong accessories, little spoons, little vials and other basic products are available on Amazon.

Remember when Cracked advocated for drug legalization?

Oh and for a bonus aside from one line there's one mention of guns in the article (and that's a joke about Chicago).

Hmmm... odd that. Especially given it's in the title of the accompanying audio. Well someone with more patience than me can listen to that.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Cracked admits that government is completely incompetent.

Their article on Flint's water mess is interesting for two reasons
1) they admit that government is completely, dangerously incompetent and utterly without redress or accountability.
2) And despite the heresy in 1  the article is an amazing case of "the dog that didn't bark"....

Sure they bemoan how infrastructure is crumbling and how "Our parents were promised Star Trek. We're getting, like, fucking Battletruck,"  but there's no mention of how politicians have been demanding and crowing about their infrastructure spending.

And it's not broached that despite the various governments have been spending huge amounts on "infrastructure" (Remember the Stimulus?) that the money has just "vanished"

Sure the article bemoans the racism in the system, but ignores who is running the system.
(Heck the article breezily sidesteps how this was being used to solely blame the one Republican the media could find...)

It's yet another case of the people screaming for "more government" decrying the actions of "more government."

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Cracked: Civil War could happen here; let's ban guns!

So... after going on about how great gun control is...

Cracked writes this article.

It Could Happen Here: 5 Ways Civil War Changes Modern Life

Gee this is up there with Cracked talking about how abusive and racist police are... while also demanding gun control... and for the kicker they write on how the Police are starting the next US Civil war.

*golf claps*

Though in classic Cracked fashion they pick the Ukraine as their example...

Which isn't quite a Civil War.   Or if you went ahead with it being a civil war you'd think they'd at least mention Russia's involvement.

Save for these bits...

Within a matter of weeks a huge chunk of Eastern Ukraine, centered around the city of Donetsk, declared itself a new country: "Novorussia." President Yanukovych was ousted on Feb. 22. Our source Anna lived in the city of Donetsk. On March 1, barely a week later, this happened:
"A group of ... aggressive people got out on the streets of Donetsk, and some seemed to be local, others had accents that seemed to ID them as Russian. They seemed to be from Russian cities like Rostov. They came out and put out Russian flags; they took down Ukrainian flags. They surrounded the district council building, and they stormed the building. ... [They] wanted to make this man Pavel Gubarev mayor. People were shouting 'Russiya!' and started taking down Ukrainian flags."....
See, most modern cameras include GPS data in the image files they make. Early in the war one Russian soldier posted a selfie on Instagram that led to the first objective confirmation that Russian soldiers were fighting in Ukraine.

Yeah...  civil war.

Of course Cracked had to avoid mentioning the Russian involvement in Ukraine.

Because acknowledging that Russia has given massive support in material, men, and intelligence and is working to take over parts of Ukraine....

Well what would that make their "It can happen here!"  headline?

It'd make them sound like they think Red Dawn could happen in the US.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Cracked "We Don't want to Ban Guns"

Wow....  so this is cracke's edgy new angle on guns.

It's ironic that they talk about "feeling safe" as something on the pro-gun side.  And the whole deodand thing.

Now watch this and you'll readily see why the gun control advocates were so heavily invested in their "every day is a mass shooting!" stat.  And you know for saying that nobody wants to take your guns they seem pretty invested in... getting rid of guns.

There's a reason why they don't talk about what gun control they want.

Remember how recently they had a post on how no one wants to take your guns?

On and the brain trust has just figured out that guns are designed to kill people.

Do tell!

Well at least they didn't go for the "the 2nd amendment only protects militias" argument.

Because that would have been... awkwerd given another article that came out today.

4 Facts Anti-Government Militias Don't Want You To Know

Now sure the article does point out that these groups cherry-pick the laws they object to, and that they don't exactly have a record of... competence.

But it wouldn't Be Cracked if they didn't get in the racism angle
With such gems as:

This information was compiled by the Southern Poverty Law Center, a hate group watchdog working in tandem with FBI investigations. You can't deny that most high-profile cases of domestic anti-government and/or white supremacist terrorism (Ruby Ridge, Waco, Posse Comitatus, Oklahoma City) have happened while a Democrat was in office. It's also not hard to guess why these groups would suddenly surge after the election of an African American president who makes gun sales skyrocket every time he farts.
The SPLC?  Yeah that's a non-biased group.   Wait...  Waco was an example of anti-government and/or white supremacist terrorism?  Uh...  okay...

That's kind of a "wet pavement causes rain" way to look at things.  And Posse Comitatus?  Does the writer mean the Act or the Organization?  And if the organization do they mean the shooting of deputies in 2012?   I'd guess so but there's no source.

And it's funny that in an article about an occupation of a building, as a protest of police abuse there's no mention of Occupy or BLM.

Though the best part of the paragraph is "election of an African American president who makes gun sales skyrocket every time he farts".

Right... those paranoid racist gun owners,  stupidly thinking Obama wanted to ban guns, and then stupidly buying guns whenever he advocates for gun control.  How crazy!

But here's the best part,  after the article goes on about how stupid, racist, and politically biases these militias are but what's the top item?

#1. These Guys Are Absolutely Right To Not Trust The Government
Oh, well then.

But here's the best part, see it's not that the goverment is acutally abusive or dangerous.  Nope it's that these guys are all vets that are ill treated.

Yup!  It's the old "dangerous veteran" chestnut.

With a bonus swipe at gun shows:

 Maybe it has more to do with a system that can spit out someone like a shell-shocked Timothy McVeigh and completely lose him in a sea of gun shows and angry anti-American rants.

Yes... use a guy who murdered people via a giant bomb to take a swipe at gun owners.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Obama totally doesn't want to ban guns! Says Writer that totally wants to ban guns.

That's right!

Cracked's  Luke McKinney  is at it again.

When we last saw him in September he was spewing quite a lot of usual bile.

Where in about every other paragraph he mocked the intelligence and sexuality of gun owners.

This is a guy who was visibly angry at a lack of bans and confiscation.   A man who thought even hunting wasn't a valid reason to own guns (#5 on the preceding link) .

And here he is doing 20 questions On Obama's recent executive actions.

And in short... he's pretty correct and shows that he's fairly informed on the legal rules on purchasing and how the Executive Actions would change things.

And it's (especially by Luke's standards) very civil.

Isn't it odd that a guy who doesn't think there's any valid reasons to own guns and demanded some pretty strong gun control is so calm about Obama's actions?  You'd think he'd be livid, right?  

I mean this is a guy that couldn't write go two paragraphs without an insult to gun owners.

Of course the first question shows why Luke is taking this tack.  All of a sudden a writer that was all about gun bans and confiscation is telling us that no one wants gun bans and confiscations.  Especially the president!

And lest we forget Obama did spend months lobbying congress to pass an Assault Weapons Ban, and endorsed states that did pass assault weapons bans.  Including states that did away with grandfathering and meant that gun owners had to give up their guns.

Though Luke's change in attitude means a lack of sincerity either then or now.

Heck let's just track  how Luke ends these articles.

Luke's  June post:
Check out more NRA nutcasery with 3 Reasons It's Time To Stop Taking The NRA Seriously and The 4 Most Meaningless Arguments Against Gun Control. 
Enjoy imaginary worlds where guns make sense with The Strange History Of Terminator Games and The Greatest Video Game Gun Of All Time.
His September post:

Do you want more rootin' tootin' anti-gun argumentin'? Of course you do! We've got more adventures in all-American gunplay right here, with 5 Reasons Even Gun Owners Should Hate The NRA and The 4 Most Meaningless Arguments Against Gun Control.
And don't forget that minigun barrages are entirely reasonable in professional, movie-invented, killer robot and/or generic foreign despot scenarios. That's why Luke gathered The Toughest Action Dads In Movie History and The Most Advanced Terminator Games Ever Made in handy lists, for YOU.

And today's:
Luke openly admits he has a bias when it comes to the gun control debate. Read more from him on the subject in 7 Incredibly Biased Arguments Against Gun Control and find some common ground in the gun control debate after reading 6 Things Gun Lovers And Haters Can Agree On.
Subscribe to our YouTube channel to see why James Bond needs a lot more than a silencer to be stealthy in 5 Gun Myths You Probably Believe (Thanks To Movies), and watch other videos you won't see on the site!

Huh how about that.  Why it's like he decided to back off on how much he hates guns.
Shame there's links showing he's got a bit more than a "bias".

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Anti Gun to Anti Free Speech

Here's something that I'm seeing as a broader trend.

If someone is anti-gun  eventually they will reveal themselves to be anti-free speech.

Especially if their rhetoric boils down to them not trusting the common person with firearms.

Doubly so if their lack of trust comes, at least in part, from not trusting themselves.
And why yes, this *is* a further point on "Edmund".

If you make the statement that you think "extremist rhetoric" is the root of all terrorism and strongly imply that every terrorist is an unwitting rube...

Well, that shows a rather scary view of how you think speech needs to be "controlled".

In Edmund's case sure there's the selective outrage where he only thinks "lies" and "extreme rhetoric"  are a problem when it goes against his politics, but that's bog standard.

No what's worrying is Edmund is one of those gun control advocates who admits the 2nd amendment would be a problem for implementing the gun control he'd really like,  but he sees it as being too hard to repeal,  and thus advocates for passing unconstitutional laws and pretending they're not unconstitutional.

And now he's making noises about free speech.

Friday, November 6, 2015

No: Telling me you don't trust yourself to not abuse firearms does *not* reassure me.

There's something I've been thinking on.

Consider the response that sometimes pops up when discussing conceal carry occasionally someone will reply with: "Oh no I could never carry a gun, I've been in situations where if I had a gun I would have murdered someone." Maybe not in those exact words, but the statement will contain a personal view that if they had access to a gun, they would have fired upon a person and it would not have been justified self defense.

Often this is coupled with this explaining why they're against carry in general (That is their experience means you should not be allowed carry) But let us put that aside for the moment.
Let us note how different groups respond the given statement.

A) Obviously, people who are anti-gun would be in agreement, even if to exploit greater gun control. They're a less interesting case but they have some crossover with the next group.

B) People ignorant of guns, people who aren't very fond of guns would applaud the statement. They might be a bit worried at the admission at the end, but since they don't carry guns,  since they're not experienced with guns  they'll have relief that the person in question (let's call him Edmund) doesn't have a gun on him.  Their focus is on the weapon itself,  which shows a view on the hierarchy of violence (that is that guns are "real" weapons, while knives and clubs are not).  And on deodands, that the gun itself has some agency.

This group would also be worried at the admission of a violent nature on the part of the question but they'd take comfort in "Well he doesn't have a gun so he can't do anything really /bad/"  After all,  people in this group have knives and blunt instruments and they don't kill people!

C) Now gun folk take an... different view.  This is especially true the more someone is informed on self -defense law. In short,  this groups sees Edmund (the person in question) admitting to mens rea. (That is the mental state of a person to intentionally commit a crime).

And yes, the above statement is an admission to being in the mental state where they /would/ have murdered someone. And the only thing stopping them was... not having a preferred tool at hand.
Imagine if Hannibal Lecter smiled at you and calmly assured you that you're okay because he didn't bring his favorite carving knives. How reassured would you feel?

There are a few ways a "person of the gun" can interpret the statement.

1)  Edmund (the POQ) is lying. He hasn't really been in a situation like that,  or when he was he did not really want to kill someone that was not a manifest threat to grievous bodily harm.  He's just saying that to exaggerate what /someone else/ may think. And is using this, as previously mentioned, to advocate for a particular gun regulation.

However... if your advocacy involves you intentionally lying to portray yourself has having murderous impulses... then your advocacy might not be so well thought out.

2) Edmund is lying to himself.  This is a more extreme case of 1.  Maybe they never were in the situation they've alluded to, but they've thought about it.  Maybe they were in a situation and they thought they might do it.  People do fantasize things.

And if we are dealing with someone who is not experienced with firearms, CCW, or self-defense law. Well, then you have their own ignorance and fears playing at their mind. This one has a potential to go very wrong for Edmund. Allow me to have an aside about training.

Training is a way to prepare and hone skills.   Specifically of the sense "If X then (a)"  That is, "If X happens to men then I will do (a)." An important thing to realize is that in an extreme situation one will be pressed for time.
This is why people will freeze in a situation outside their experience, they have no anticipated plan and thus their brain does not know what to do.  How often is a person's reaction to violence something like "I didn't think it was real." "I didn’t think something like this could happen to me." 
Thus the first part of training is to create the frame of "If then".  One has to have the frame of "If this happens to me… I should do (a)!" Later training is to refine the response to get better at doing (a). 
What's important to note, is that high stress encounters do not automatically result in necessitating lethal force. The other person might not be a manifest threat.   The person many surrender.  The person may be too far away. In short,  the Ability Opportunity Jeopardy triad may not be present. 
But that does not mean that the case will not be extremely stressful.  And  good training would improve the situation and perhaps keep it from becoming a mess in the first place.

And now back to Edmund.  We are dealing with someone who has trained himself into thinking he will  murder someone.

He has told himself (and us) that in a high stress situation he would kill someone that is not an immediate, lethal threat.  What is the "if then" operating in that person's mind? What would happen if such a person found himself in a very heated situation? He might take solace that he's "unarmed" but...

Take this hypothetical.

Edmund is driving on the highway,  there's a traffic jam, things slow down. There's a collision with a catering van. (We'll leave out who is at fault for the accident) 
Both vehicles pull to the side.  There does not seem to be any major injuries,  but the catering truck is stalled out. The caterer gets out,  he's a stout slightly overweight man who starts swearing loudly at his younger assistant who also gets out. 
Edmund also gets out to fix a flat. Trying to work with the tire iron sees the caterer yelling at his assistant while the  younger man is trying to recover what he can out of the back of the van.
The caterer then turns to Edmund and starts yelling at him about how he's ruined his business, that he needed to complete this job and now he won't make it. Angrily waving towards the traffic with his open hands, he walks towards Edmund and stops 10 feet away demanding his insurance information and saying that he'll hear from his lawyer. 
And here's Edmund. On the side of the road with cars whistling past,  his heart-rate is up, he was just in an accident, his adrenaline is still pumping in,  his emotions are high, and here's this guy blaming him for the accident that he caused, meanwhile this oaf is distracting him from trying to get these stupid bolts off the flat that he caused. 
So, still holding the tire iron, Edmund looks at the angry man.  Edmund has told many people that he didn't carry a gun because he thought he'd murder someone when his blood got boiling. 
He's told himself that he could murder someone....   And his blood is boiling right now. And here he is with a nice bar of steel and a pestering nuisance in front of him. 
Do you really think that he's got a tire iron and not a gun will make a different in his actions?  Do you think he'd be more or less at a risk of doing something horrific than someone who has not made the given statement?

Let's look at this example from a self-defense standpoint

Note the caterer may be angry but there is no Jeopardy. Being angry and threatening to sue is not a manifest threat of bodily harm. 
Ability is not present either,  while the caterer has an assistant,  that person is in the van. Edmund is not outnumbered. And at the moment the caterer's hands are empty and he has made no furtive movements 
Opportunity is also not as present as the man is outside of grappling range. 
Thus if Edmund killed, or hurt, the caterer he would have absolutely no defense. Especially if it were discovered that he made repeated statements about how he would commit murder in this exact way. In fact if the caterer fought back and hurt Edmund then he would be the one to have a self-defense claim.  Though his yelling and antagonizing Edmund would complicate matters.
(Which is why being calm in such cases is good advice.)

Just imagine if the prosecutor was able to get Edmund's given statements admitted as evidence. They would readily show mens rea for the incident in question.  "Members of the jury this man told his friends on multiple instances how if he had a weapon in his hand he would murder a someone, well," the prosecutor picks up the tire iron in its evidence bag. "this was what he had in his hand on the day in question.  He used it to kill a man,  sounds like it was a weapon to me."

Still, interpretation 2 has you are dealing with a person who has a potentially dangerous self-delusion. One that could easily become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Which brings us to the third way to take the statement.

3) Edmund is mentally capable of murder and is knowingly telling you that all that keeps him from murdering when under stress is he doesn't have his ideal weapon at hand.   You can easily replicate the caterer scenario with a person operating under interpretation 3.

One can see how none of the interpretations  1 through 3 reflect very well on Edmund in the eyes of one of the "gun folk". Edmund would range from  disturbingly deceitful to dangerously deluded to manifestly dangerous. Regardless, it makes Edmund a risky person to be around if things go bad.
How much would you trust them in a risky situation? Edmund's he has told you that you should *not* trust him.  He's told you he doesn't trust himself.
Even in a situation where lethal force would be justified.  Would *you* trust having that guy nearby you?
Say you're both walking and a couple muggers come out and shove guns in your faces and demand money or your life. You manage to get an opportunity to draw and shoot one,  he falls and his gun falls from his hand. The other mugger drops his gun as well and starts backing away. 
Now you've got to split your attention between two people who until a second ago were lethal threats.  You also have to get on the horn with the police and medical, deal with witnesses,  *and* be on the lookout for other threats. 
If you had someone you trusted with you...   well maybe they'd have a gun of their own, or if you had a spare gun you could give him it.  Or maybe he could gently kick those guns so the muggers couldn't grab them again. At the very least you could have another set of eyes who can help see if the police have come or if there's more bad guys.
Instead you've just deployed deadly force next to a person who has told you that he is irresponsible with regards to deadly force.

The best you can hope for is he won't make the situation worse. And we're not even getting into what kind of witness he would be.  I don't know about you but having someone who is, at best, a known liar on matters of life and death talking to the police as a witness does not fill me with joy.

For another hypothetical, let's go back to the caterer situation.  Now have it where Edmund is an associate (maybe even friend of yours). You're a passenger in the car.   And the situation starts to play out as it did before. How comfortable would you feel seeing your associate's white knuckles on that tire iron?

Heck we don't even need to have such a dramatic hypothetical.  Just being a passenger in Edmund's car is risky enough. Do you think someone who feels his anger is such he can't let himself carry a gun would be more or less susceptible to road rage?