Guns & Jobs
A policy to respect gun owners more, to punish gun offenders more, advance employment, and secure the public safety.
(Note: underlined words/phrases correspond to links.)
To see what we see ‘through the windshield’ for the Second Amendment, you must also see what’s up ahead for our economy, and the international economy, through that same windshield.
If you’ve been following our research into global systemic banks, and the precarious if not tattered condition of their balance sheets, partly detailed here and here — there’s no tangible capital in the assets minus liabilities column to a number of the world’s biggest banks, basically — you know what’s in store for the American economy and the planetary economy in 2017/2018.
But let’s start with what someone else sees… We’ve referenced a Martin Armstrong before on Main Street Gov. We’ve referenced the trailer for the German documentary about him, entitled The Forecaster, that can be seen here:
Mr. Armstrong has written:
The cycle of political change is 309.6 years. [Then] we reach a crisis in government. This has been resolved, unfortunately, with violence — for whoever is in power, never goes quietly into the night.
Mr. Armstrong’s track record is impeccable — for more than 30 years, he’s been on the mark with every prediction he’s made. We have our own reasons to believe he’ll be spot-on with this prediction, as well.
As for the current 309.6 cycle, we are at its tail-end. Confidence in government has been on the wane for years, but you may notice it’s been waning faster with the years. By the end of the third quarter of 2015, Gallup’s annual governance poll, conducted Sep 9–13, showed a majority believing that most members of Congress are “corrupt”. More than a year earlier, a survey by AP/NORC discovered a majority that could no longer regard their President as “honest”. And, about the same time, the two parties’ mainstream media protectors also came under the spotlight of public derision, with a 107-nation poll by Transparency International, a corruption monitor, finding Americans more likely than Italians to say that the media in their country were all “corrupt or extremely corrupt.” Italians invented corrupt. So it was quite a revelation, even for us, who tune into mainstream media only to entertain ourselves with what kind of nonsense they might be spewing that day.
We’ve long been of the opinion that acute political chaos, to upend the Establishment, begins Midterm Election Day 2018 and ends General Election Day 2020, with a new political movement tossing the entire Status Quo out — that timeline is increasingly looking about right.
For the “crisis in government” Mr. Armstrong has predicted: “The worst is between 2015.75 and 2020.05” translating to between Oct 1 2015 and Jan 19 2020 — by which time, perhaps by no coincidence, the Economic Party will have introduced itself to the nation and announced its candidates for the Presidency and Vice-Presidency for General Election Day Nov 3 2020.
On Main Street Gov, we’ve forecasted lots of bad things happening in the years 2017/2018 with what we predict will be the demise of the eurozone, exposing the papered-over bankruptcy of the entire systemic banking universe. (Again, we’ve gone into what those bad things will be, and why they’ll come to pass, here and here specifically.) Mr. Armstrong is forecasting turbulent times for 2015.75 out to 2020.05. While our forecasts have more to do with a meltdown in high finance structures, Mr. Armstrong’s forecasts center around a precipitous loss of faith in the Political Order, accompanied by a mass-exodus of capital out of sovereign bonds across the globe, with the eurozone (first) and Japan (next) in the crosshairs, with catastrophic consequences for emerging markets, and extremely dire implications for developed markets, the United States included.
History teaches us that when economies implode, so do the governments in whose custody & care those economies lie. True, failed governments rarely go “quietly into the night.” They tend to fight tooth & nail to at least impede if not reverse the implosion, by erecting around themselves a buffer, a barrier, that steadily transforms a nation into a police or militarized state.
A police or militarized state can thrive for some time, so long as the population that it’s subjugated is NOT armed.
Under The Reason to Be, we wrote:
Even the U.S. Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute has called for readiness on the part of the U.S. military for a “violent, strategic dislocation inside the United States” incited by “unforeseen economic collapse.” The Institute’s report has talked about a “loss of functioning political and legal order” and a “rapid dissolution of public order in all or significant parts of the U.S.” in the aftermath of such an economic collapse. The study spoke of “purposeful domestic resistance” and considered the possibility that (quote) “widespread civil violence would force the defense establishment to reorient priorities in extremis to defend basic domestic order and human security.”
A “defense establishment” defending “human security” is a good thing, but defending “domestic order” can mean a lot of things. The word “order” has been bandied about more than most other words by ruthless fascists, communists, dictators and despots, throughout history, the world over.
That no American government would ever descend into tyranny, is specifically why the Second Amendment was born, to stand only one step down from the First Amendment that assured all peaceful and lawful political opponents a Freedom of Speech.
The Second Amendment stands guard over the First Amendment.
Without the Second, the First would be violable in the blink of an eye.
Elsewhere on this website, we suggested:
If there are bailouts again in 2017/2018 — and there will be — protests might sprout up to disrupt meetings, banks and bankers might get blockaded in their high-rise condos and offices, and the internet could light-up to foment more of the disturbance. In such times, order — and the containment of disorder — in both the real and virtual space, become paramount to any system hell-bent on preserving the Establishment Status Quo.
In Brazil, in Spain, in Italy, we’ve seen some such disturbances already. By Dec 2013, Spain’s elites responded to their own spate of disturbances by introducing draft legislation to criminalize dissent, something the Spanish government could not get done through the Justice system, including Spain’s Tribunal Supremo, the nation’s highest Court.
With an Act entitled “Law for Citizen Security” introduced that December, the Spanish government looked to effectively outlaw a fundamental human right that Spaniards took for granted, and that we Americans take for granted because it is contained in our Constitution, that being the heart’s content of our First Amendment.
Composed of some 55 articles, the Spanish government’s Citizen Security Act looked to deny freedom of both speech and assembly, including congregation in police-designated “security zones” that included banker offices and banker domiciles.
The Act sought to punish photography of police officers and private security guards in the conduct of their policing activities no matter how abusive they were.
It sought to impose fines in excess of €30,000 upon violators of the Citizen Security Act — criticizing the government during a protest or on social media, for example, was enough to be hit with a €30,000 fine.
As for how excruciating the fines could be, try €600,000 upon anyone found ‘disrespecting or demeaning the state, its rulers, or its monarchy.’ To put that stupefying fine in perspective, know that by 2012 (when things were much better for the average Spaniard) VOXeurop would define a dream job in Spain to be €1,000 a month.
Fortunately for the Spanish state, for Spanish rulers, and the Spanish monarchy, there’s been no Second Amendment in place in Spain to guard any semblance of a First, the way it’s been for America since Dec 15 1791 when our Founding Fathers enshrined the Second in our Bill of Rights to defend the First. Or else, the Spanish authorities might have found it a bit difficult to extract €600,000 fines from those who had the gall — the audacity — to not always kneel at the feet of Spain’s nobility.
Make no mistake about it: The ‘original intent’ of the Second Amendment had nothing to do with hunting a deer, or stopping an intruder, or skeet-shooting a target out of the sky on a sunny Sunday afternoon — its intent was to dissuade government from ever descending into the tyranny of destroying inalienable human rights, as the modern-day government of Spain is, so far unopposed.
At this juncture, you may wonder what Spain has to do with America. America and Spain are, after all, different in so many ways, and apart in others. Yes, but they share two critical commonalities:
- In both countries bankers effectively decide public policy, and
- In both countries there is an immense revolving door that (at the very least) assures that public policy never runs counter to the vital interests of banks.
In short: Threatened, bankers will retaliate by wielding public policy in both countries.
Ask any banker in the uppermost echelons of management whether he supports the idea of peaceful law-abiding citizens having unfettered access to guns, and he’ll tell you he does — although he doesn’t — so long as those citizens remain peaceful and law-abiding. Remaining peaceful and law-abiding has nothing to do with law or peace to a banker, but has everything to do with bailouts, bonuses, and business-as-usual, and you not getting in the way of any of that, no matter how many times bank executives strip-mine the bank into bankruptcy, for personal gain. (Again, it’s no accident that Prof. Bill Black, a former Executive Director of the Institute for Fraud Prevention and one of the most principled and most knowledgable regulators of our time, would title his book: The Best Way to Rob a Bank is to Own One.)
Because if you do get in the way of any of that, count on bankers to retaliate by wielding public policy to curtail your First Amendment rights by denying you the Second.
“Why do you need guns on trains?”
In 2012, Michael Bloomberg would tell ABC News that President Barack Obama had “gone in the wrong direction” on guns, citing:
“[Obama] signed two pieces of legislation, one which lets you carry guns in national parks where our kids play. And the other one, he signed a bill so that you can carry a gun on Amtrak. I assume that’s to stop the rash of train robberies, which I thought stopped in the 1800s.”
First of all, there are a number of us at Main Street Gov who’ve visited national parks with our kids. Often, we’ve found ourselves walking the trails of these national parks alone with our kids, our nerves slightly on edge hearing a twig crack, wondering if there was a bear lurking in the bushes or a mountain lion prowling out of sight. In those moments, we’ve found solace in our right to carry. We’ve found comfort in knowing we could protect our kids, some of them just toddlers, in the event — rare, yes, but still remotely possible — that a wild animal came charging at them.
As for why anyone would want to have a gun on a train other than to thwart an 1800's-style train robbery, we’d bet there were a lot of people who wished they had a gun on them for self defense the evening of Dec 7 1993 on one particular train in Garden City, New York … Because that Dec 7th of 1993, on board a locomotive traveling the Long Island Rail Road, a Colin Ferguson pulled out a handgun and got out of his seat to embark on a killing spree. In his possession, 160 round of ammunition, enough to take out every passenger on board, if he’d had his way.
For the next 3 minutes, he walked down the aisle of the train and shot passengers to his right and left as he passed each one of them, as methodically “as if he were taking tickets.”
Those who could flee, fled. Those who could not, cowered under their seats, tried to protect their exposed heads with their hands and arms, prayed, and, when confronted by Mr. Ferguson and the muzzle of his gun, pled for mercy, begging desperately for their lives.
By the time he was done emptying two magazines, twenty-five people had been shot, six of them fatally. If not for three passengers charging and overpowering Mr. Ferguson as he tried to load a third magazine, the victim count would’ve risen substantially.
Among the dead in the Long Island Rail Road massacre, a Dennis McCarthy. Among the severely wounded, a Kevin McCarthy. Dennis was husband, and Kevin was son, to a Carolyn McCarthy who would go on to become a U.S. Congresswoman, running on (you guessed it) an anti-gun platform, except her anti-gun platform had a caveat of sorts.
We have a specific purpose in referencing Mrs. McCarthy and it’s just up ahead, but before we tread there, an intermission is warranted here to make a couple of points:
- The Ruger 9mm pistol that Mr. Ferguson used in the slaughter — he’d purchased the firearm at a Turner’s Outdoorsman in Long Beach, California, in full compliance with California’s already strict gun laws.
- If someone like Colin Ferguson were to board a means of public transport in (say) Tallahassee, Florida, with an intent to maim and murder passengers on board, there’s a reasonable chance he’d be shot dead by one (or more) of Florida’s two million+ concealed-carry permit holders, within seconds of him getting his first shot off.
- You can’t make the hundreds of millions of guns (we’ve got inside America) disappear with the stroke of a legislative pen, just as you can’t make the hundreds of millions of pounds of illegal drugs (that are within our borders at any one time) disappear by diktat. Banning something that’s popular, or making it harder to procure something that’s popular, will only send it underground, and turn it into expensive contraband, turning gangsters into wealthy gun dealers.
- Sometimes, the easiest place for a madman to buy a gun, is somewhere where it’s real hard to buy a gun, and by that we mean: if you look and talk like a psychopath, it’s easier to acquire a firearm on the streets of Chicago, Illinois, than it would be in Tallahassee, Florida, for the simple reason that there is a large and lucrative black market for guns in cities like Chicago, while it’s bad business to be illicitly selling guns in cities like Tallahassee, where gun stores and gun shows are aplenty.
- The fear of apprehension, not to mention the stress the seller has to go through wondering if the buyer might be law enforcement, undercover, can be very disconcerting to the risk-reward ratio, so to speak. The fact of the matter is, a deranged lunatic can buy multiple AR-15's in the Windy City if he’s got the money for it, and not get even one in Tally, because risk-reward can dictate such economics.
About a year following the carnage on the train in Garden City, New York, Carolyn McCarthy filed a $36 million lawsuit against the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) and its parent, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), alleging that the LIRR and MTA had failed to secure the safety of passengers by, for example, not erecting metal detectors and not deploying armed plainclothes police officers. (Which, by the way, will take us later to our thesis about the necessity of making “Gun Free” zones “Gun Safe” as well, and turning “Gun Safe” zones into worksites for millions of new jobs.)
But, more to the point, it would not have been feasible to have had a police officer in every compartment, and thus by certainty in Ferguson’s compartment. Moreover, police officers aren’t marksmen by default — the news is littered with numerous articles of officers firing off dozens of rounds at a target, standing in open sight, and missing every shot. Sometimes, bystanders have been struck well outside the intended line of fire.
Some of the conceal-carry permit holders we know, and frequent the range with, perform tactical training exercises periodically. SWAT being an exception, police departments are not known to test and retest the skills of its patrol officers, or its seasoned ranking officers, this way. Thus, it’s not unreasonable to assume that two armed citizens, with two guns, can more definitively be lethal, at neutralizing a monster like Colin Ferguson, than one cop with one gun.
For as many detractors as Michael Bloomberg has among gun rights advocates, few pause to reflect upon what might Mr. Bloomberg’s motive be in wanting pervasive gun control. Few recall that he began his career a banker, and that he is more tight-knit to the banking community nowadays than he ever was. Mr. Bloomberg has fought Wall Street regulation at every step — despite President Obama’s banking rules being all bark and no bite, Mr. Bloomberg would come out against much of the Dodd-Frank Act, as evidenced by this article: Mayor Bloomberg Is Having None of Obama’s Banking Rules. Mr. Bloomberg has voiced his opposition to tying banker bonuses to banker performance, saying (quote) “Maybe we should hold back (Congressional) salaries for a decade or so, and see whether the laws they pass work out” — not a bad idea, per se, but you get the gist. And, in defense of Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein who himself claimed to be a banker “doing God’s work”, Mr. Bloomberg would in unequivocal support utter: “[He’s] trying to lead this firm at a time when God couldn’t lead it without being criticized.”
Missed in the invocation of God and banker in the same sentence, by these two bankers, was the heightened probability that were God to even be looking for a job on Wall Street, He most certainly wouldn’t lead a firm like Goldman Sachs — more than likely, He would break it up and clean it out, until it had turned itself into a honest bank first.
Michael Bloomberg moves around with a phalanx of heavily armed bodyguards on his perimeter. He’s a billionaire many times over and, relatively speaking, his entourage of gunmen costs him as much in a year, as a can of Coke would cost you in a day.
As we detailed here, if you’re cashed-up / politically-connected in New York — where by the way Bloomberg was mayor thrice, and spent a quarter of a billion bucks to win thrice — it’s easy to get a permit to carry issued to you. And if you’re a rich banker on Wall, you’re politically connected.
We know a number of residents of New York who have carry concealed permits, and they all got the same combo in common — gobs of money and lots of political honey.
So, yes, in their world, guns are for the 0.1% — in their world, the other 99.9% should learn karate.
On Jan 20 2008, a young woman, just 19 year old, named Brianna Denison was abducted, raped, and murdered by a coward named James Biela. Just three months earlier, this coward raped another woman named Amanda Collins, who was thankfully left alive after her ordeal. Ms. Collins was a student at the time. She was sexually assaulted on campus, at night, while making her way to her car after class. She also happened to be a concealed carry permit holder, except she was not allowed to carry by university rules on university property, where also the parking lot lay on that fateful day.
Had Ms. Collins been allowed to carry that fateful day, it’s probable Brianna would be alive today and the scumbag Biela would be dead.
In 5 minutes, let’s now allow the very brave and very commendable Ms. Collins to tell you her story in her own words in this clip entitled Safe Haven:
Again, this is another instance of a Gun Free zone failing to be Gun Safe.
Turning again to mass shootings… their incidence might become less isolated as the economy turns down sharply heading into and after 2017/2018. (Again, the logic gates to that forecast can be found here and here specifically.) The immediate years after 2018, we suspect, will be depressionary, in an economic sense. Job losses, personal bankruptcies, evictions from homes, broken families, irrepressible shame and self-loathing, separations & divorces, irreconcilable jealousies, can drive those teetering on a cliff’s end, off that cliff. We need to keep that in mind as we measure the urgency of this Bill-Request.
While mass shootings are an American problem — and possibly a growing American problem going into an economic depression — they are not confined to America, obviously. (Those who one-sidedly report on gun violence being near-exclusively an American problem, must remember to temper that allegation with the recognition that there are also numerous lives saved on American soil in acts of lawful armed self-defense, and lawful defense of unarmed others victimized by forcible felony.) Those who one-sidedly report on gun violence should recall that the world’s biggest modern-day mass-murder, entailing the use of a firearm, occurred in Norway, a country that has some of the toughest weapons laws of any country. In that attack on July 22 2011, a Anders Breivik killed 69 and wounded 110, 55 of them gravely. Most of the victims were young, enjoying summer camp on an island, with not even one of the many adult supervisors there to protect them, being armed to defend them, from an onslaught that lasted 90 minutes. Yes, 90 MINUTES!
Again, Gun Free but not Gun Safe.
The biggest mass murder entailing the use of a firearm in the U.S. happened April 16 2007 on the campus of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and the State University in Blacksburg, Virginia. In two separate attacks, a student killed 32 and wounded 17 in that rampage.
Once again, Gun Free but not Gun Safe.
So, how do you turn Gun Free into Gun Safe? Simple, man every designated Gun Free zone with an armed security force, trained and financed by the federal government. Since there’s got to be tens of thousands of Gun Free zones in America, from schools and theaters to post offices, that ought to translate into millions of new jobs. Can the feds afford it? Sure, they can, if they take it from the funds they’ve reserved for the rescue of the banks at the next financial crisis. At the next financial crisis in 2017/2018, watch them pour trillions of dollars into the banks, for the second time in a decade, without as much as a second thought, with some of those trillions going to cover the $7 Trillion (notional) in Credit Default Swaps etc that Citigroup (and its accomplices) surreptitiously snuck onto the back of the taxpayer, by way of the Fiscal Year 2015 Omnibus Appropriations Bill, in the thick of the holidays in 2014, when few outside the beltway were looking — details of that transaction are HERE.
If you are a citizen in good standing with the law, the right to arm oneself, and if necessary resort to deadly force in an act of pure and unadulterated self-defense against a mortal threat, is a fundamental right in this great nation of ours. The architects of our Constitution saw to it that it would be for a multitude of other reasons as well.
We urge all law abiding Americans — young women, especially, because they are often the target of awful men — to exercise that right, and demand it if they don’t have it.
We should be able to fight for our life, without having to beg for it.
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