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Ready! Shoot! Aim!

A Reuters opinion writer, one Brend Debusmann, wrote an ominously named piece called "In American crisis, anger, and guns". In it, he basically tries to tie a rise in gun sales with a growing, dark mood enveloping the country. It does, however, devolve into another pathetic excuse for what passes as journalism, rife with strawmen and built on alarmist bull.

"In the first two months of this year, around 2.5 million Americans bought guns, a 26 percent increase over the same period in 2008. It was great news for gun makers and a sign of a dark mood in the country.

Gun sales shot up almost immediately after Barack Obama won the U.S. presidential elections on November 4 and firearm enthusiasts rushed to stores, fearing he would tighten gun controls despite campaign pledges to the contrary.

After the November spike, gun dealers say, a second motive has helped drive sales: fear of social unrest as the ailing economy pushes the newly destitute deeper into misery. Many of the newly poor come from the relentlessly rising ranks of the unemployed. In February alone, an average of 23,000 people a day lost their jobs"

True, the spike in gun purchasing is mainly attributed to a fear of the Obama administration conducting an assault on Second Amendment rights. However, attributing it to the "dark mood" of the country is irresponsible and lazy.

I also don't think that everyone who "rushed" to gun stores can be lumped into what he describes as "firearm enthusiasts". I own a gun, for my own reasons, an it isn't because I am enthusiastic about firearms.

He then says, almost cryptically, "gun dealers say" that "fear of social unrest" has helped to spur on the gun buying. Hmmm. Gun dealers. Wonder how many he actually spoke to. He doesn't actually site any real people.

Anyway..

Yes, Mr. Debusmann.. We are all going to be living in fortified enclaves, where gun totin' survivors rule the day. It'll be like scenes from "The Postman" (one of Costner's box office duds). You'll know it if you've seen it.

He then goes on to describe "tent cities" of unemployed middle-class workers, relating them to "Third World refugee camps".

Sheesh.

As if almost unwittingly disproving his previous points, he continues:

"There are no statistics on how many guns are bought by people who think they need them to defend themselves against desperate fellow citizens.

But, as columnist David Ignatius put it in the Washington Post, "there's an ugly mood developing as people start looking for villains to blame for the economic mess." In November, an analysis published by the U.S. Army War College's Strategic Studies Institute listed "unforeseen economic collapse" as one of the possible causes of future "widespread civil violence.""

I see. So this is all pure, irresponsible conjecture on your part. And as far as the Strategic Studies Institute goes, I bet they have scenarios on plenty of thing you don't even want to think can happen. Using this as some sort of evidence to back up your paranoid thesis is disingenuous at best, and reckless at worst.

"What is really remarkable about all this is that there hasn't been social unrest," remarked an executive with business interests in Latin American countries where riots and street demonstrations in response to economic squeezes are routine. "The conditions for it are all there."

Perhaps, Mr. Debusmann and unnamed executive, it is because we are NOT an uncivilized third world country that throws violent tantrums at every inconvenient situation.

Anger is building. Just under half of those surveyed in a poll by the Pew Research Center this month expressed anger about "bailing out banks and financial institutions that made poor decisions." The poll was taken before details became known of the full extent of the bonus-paying spree to members of the very team that brought the insurance giant AIG close to collapse.

The government propped up AIG with close to $200 billion and now owns 80% of the company. The argument that $165 million in bonuses had to be paid under contractual obligations went down particularly badly with workers of the three U.S. car companies whose leaders appealed for support from the Bush administration last year when the economic crisis gathered steam."

If anger was one of the possible answers to the poll question, than a response of anger is what you will likely get.

And his obligatory dig at the Bush administration is grounded in false premise. He and the angry auto workers can thank Chris Dodd for inserting the AIG bonus provision. Wonder why he didn't say anything about that?

He then goes on to indirectly demonize the salaries of CEO's versus the average worker, as if to add fuel to this wet fire he is trying to create.

He closes with this prophetic rumination:

"To what extent those gaps will shrink under Obama remains to be seen and the outlook for swift action is not promising. There are, in fact, not many things for which the outlook is promising. Exceptions include Smith&Wesson. They expect revenue to double within the next three years."

Argh! Those damned, eeeeevil gun companies. How dare they sell a product which people are legally allowed to purchase.

And while we're at it, damn that pesky Second Amendment, too.


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Comments (24)

Anyone surfing the ... (Below threshold)
irongrampa:


Anyone surfing the 'Net lately cannot help but see the prevalence of apocalyptic postings, referring to the "coming crisis".
I suspect this writer has done just a bit of surfing, and used this as a basis for his projection.
I suspect the undeniable surge in gun and ammo sales is a direct result of concern about proposed gun control legislation. A proactive reaction, if you will, and a prudent one.

The political situation is going to grow markedly worse in the next year, I feel.Will things deteriorate to the stage of armed insurrection? Highly doubtful, and I don't think the people so concerned have any REAL idea of just what such a scenario would be like.

As to what actually WILL happen? Just have to wait and see, I guess.

So wait, can we continue to... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

So wait, can we continue to laugh at commenters who threaten to rebel against the government for the creep towards socialism, or should we be buying kevlar and loading up on canned food items?

Scott Johnson at Powerlineb... (Below threshold)
MPR:

Scott Johnson at Powerlineblog summed it up pretty good. I'm not depressed but, I understand the sentiment.

Victor Davis Hanson asks why so many Americans are depressed. Suggesting five themes that might provide an answer, he thinks it might be more than the economy that explains our state of mind. I agree, but none of Dr. Hanson's themes accounts for my despair.

I feel utterly powerless to do anything about the fellow in the Oval Office who combines infantile leftism and adolescent grandiosity in roughly equal measures. It seems to me that every day he is responsible for assaults on the freedom and well being of the American people. I can't keep up and I can't stand to pay attention.

His aim seems to be to reduce us to government dependents. His inattention to rehabilitation of the financial system in lieu of vastly expanding the size and scope of the government is a dead giveaway, as is his lack of concern over the vast destruction of wealth his policies are working (and will continue to work).

Perhaps most depressing to me is the manifestation of his adolescent grandiosity in his stewardship of foreign policy and national security. He doesn't understand that the government of Iran is intent on acquiring nuclear weapons it can put to evil purposes. He thinks he can sweet-talk them out of achieving this objective.

He doesn't understand that the government of Iran is a tyranny that oppresses the Iranian people. He thus addresses the mad mullahs as though they represent the people of Iran.

Contrast the new year's messages to the Iranian people promulgated by James Kirchick (the 25-year-old assistant editor of the New Republic) and of Shimon Peres (the 85-year-old president of Israel) with Obama's palaver. By contrast, the president of the United States is disgracing us.

Get a clue, man! The mullahs who rule Iran with an iron fist hate you and everything you represent. They hate you in part because they view you as an apostate. They hate you in part because you represent the United States. They hate you in part because you represent the American people. They don't hate us becasuse President Bush didn't talk nice to them!

Make no mistake. The mullahs love the weakness and stupdity that President Obama transmits at ear-shattering levels in his message to them (and in his earlier Al Arabiya interview). They rebuff his advances because they know he will only treat their rebuffs as reasons to pursue them with renewed ardor.

Obama believes his cluelessness represents the higher wisdom. It is a source of his monumental self-regard. Thus his response to Vice President Cheney's criticism of Obama for undoing, and vowing to undo, the Bush administration policies that kept the American people safe from attack safe for seven years after 9/11:

President Obama, rejecting former Vice President Dick Cheney's contention that Obama has put the nation at greater risk of terrorism, suggests in an interview airing tonight on "60 Minutes" that the previous administration's stance was an "advertisement for anti-American sentiment."

"How many terrorists have actually been brought to justice under the philosophy that is being promoted by Vice President Cheney?" Obama asks. "It hasn't made us safer. What it has been is a great advertisement for anti-American sentiment."

"Brought to justice"? Good god, man, what the hell are you talking about? I don't know what he is talking about -- they haven't seen the inside of the United States District Court for the District of Colulmbia? -- but I do understand what Obama means when he says the Bush policies were "a great advertisement for anti-American sentiment." Obama and his fellow Democrats helped make them so by spreading pernicious falsehoods about their illegality and cruelty. Even worse, like the pitiful Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman, Obama aspires for us to be be well liked!

I am depressed because the president of the United States is a fool who will immiserate us, render us wards of the state and lose us our life and liberty to those who understand what they are about.

hmmm...I have bought more g... (Below threshold)

hmmm...I have bought more guns and ammo in the past 6 months than I bought in the previous 15 years!

And I add to my ammo about every 30 days. Why? Because the Peoples Republic of Kalifornia is edging towards making gun adn ammo all bu illegal.

I am not a gun nut. I don't really own that many guns. But I want to be able to have ammo for the guns I DO own.

I started a website BeJohnGalt.com to talk about what going "John Galt" means. One of the things it means is: be prepared!

I am.

p.s. I joined the NRA last year

People are buying guns and ... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

People are buying guns and ammo for a number of reasons. First, to protect themselves and their families from criminals in particular and also in case there's a breakdown in civil order. Second, as an investment in case Obama and his democrat minions pass the so-called assault weapons ban again. The last time we had such a ban the price of firearms covered by it increased many time over. For example, police departments were paying over $150 for each used 16 round pistol magazine before the last ban was lifted. Now you can get the same magazine for under $50 new.

Another factor was the Supreme Court's decision that finally established that the 2nd amendment is an individual right. That made gun ownership respectable in many circles where it was not so respectable before. The application for carry permits is also up substantially, so people are not just buying a gun and sticking it in a drawer next to their bed, they are getting licensed to carry it on their person.

I would wager that Debusman... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

I would wager that Debusmann: doesn't know anyone who owns a firearm; doesn't own one himself; and never been in a firearms store. However, Debusmann does know the liberal "gun mantra" just like they know 'everything' about "conservatives" - we all fit in such convenient molds for them: 'guns are evil', 'people who own guns are evil'; 'evil people are mentally unstable'; 'gun people are mentally unstable'; (projection) if I were really mad and upset about something, and had a gun, I'd shoot someone'; ergo 'gun people want to shoot other people'. You read an liberal intellectual's arguments about guns, you'll find the above "facts" somewhere in that article.

Hey Debusmann (aka Dumbass): Here's some free research for you. (RESEARCH - Google it) People are afraid Obama and his Congressional cohorts are going to re-enact the famous 'assault weapon ban' that did absolutely nothing to curb crime in the 90's. Why? Because they can. Many in urban areas are looking for a weapon to protect themselves and their families in case of civil unrest. You see, they believe things will get worse before they get better. (Could it be another way of saying I THINK OBAMA IS GOING TO FUCK THINGS UP?). Others are stocking up on ammo because the anti-gunners (remember - THEY WON) have a new way of attacking gun ownership. In-acting ridiculous "anti-crime" laws requiring micro-stamping of serial numbers on shell casings in order to drive the price of ammunition through the roof. Or my favorite, mandating 'a smart gun who will recognize it's owner'.

As for the riots - don't look for them happening any time soon. The American people will bear a lot before they break out the torches and pitchforks. The "normal" Americans that is. I can't speak for the Axelrod Obamabots who bleat on cue from their master.

Numbers can mean anything y... (Below threshold)
Burt:

Numbers can mean anything you want them to. I choose to believe that the American people felt 28% more secure with George W. Bush as President. Prove me wrong!

I cannot tell you for sure ... (Below threshold)

I cannot tell you for sure what the reasoning is but I can tell you that there is a feeling of uneasiness which has spread over this country.

I have nothing but anecdotal evidence, but what I am hearing is that people are really worked up over the plans and policies and uncertainty that has moved into Washington DC. The common citizen is fed up with what is going on and they seem to be getting prepared to defend the country that they have come to know and love.

I am in a business which is closely related to the firearms industry and I deal with gun retailers and manufacturers and gun owners on a daily basis.

Speaking with one gun store owner last week he said that one of the leading manufacturer of bullets in the US is making a million bullets per day and is still back ordered to the eight month range.

A gun store owner I spoke with wanted to order 1000 rifles at the ShotShow in Orlando back in January and was told that it would be December before they would be delivered. That order would typically take only 30 days.

I spoke with another gun store owner, a very large store in the south, and he said that the shotgun shell manufacturers are projecting all deliveries for orders coming in now to be delivered no earlier than the first quarter of next year.


Hyper"So wait, can... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Hyper

"So wait, can we continue to laugh at commenters who threaten to rebel against the government for the creep towards socialism, or should we be buying kevlar and loading up on canned food items?"

Spoken by someone who feels that Obama is a child that has never grown up.

More people own guns and st... (Below threshold)
Flu-Bird:

More people own guns and still our liberal suck faced imperial politicians will want to confisctae all of them just like the nazis and commies did

I don't speak for all gun o... (Below threshold)

I don't speak for all gun owners, but... Since the election, I have bought three firearms, the most recent was last week, an AR-15. It was not in my budget, and not in my plans to by these firearms right now. I felt a need to by them because I see the writing on the wall. I don't suffer from depression, and I don't predict mass upheaval among the population any time soon (we're too apathetic as a people for that).
I simply realize that in all likelyhood, Obama and company will be instituting their anti-second ammendment agenda as soon as they feel it will be politically viable to do so.
My logic is nothing more than to buy the guns I've always wanted while I still can. Nothing more to it than that.

As I have been shopping for firearms in recent weeks, I have also engaged other shoppers in conversation on the topic. My logic seems to be the general consesus. People are reluctantly spending their money on the firearms they've always wanted, because they have good reason to believe they won't be able to later...or sooner.

Who'd have thought it possi... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Who'd have thought it possible. Obama, greatest gun salesman ever.

Guns feel yummy.... (Below threshold)
WorldCitizen:

Guns feel yummy.

The Postman. Hahah I could... (Below threshold)
SillyPuddy:

The Postman. Hahah I could see something resembling that, less of stretch then it used to be, that's for sure.


At least the entire economy... (Below threshold)
Bob:

At least the entire economy isn't tanking. A custom gun maker in our Iowa community is 5,000 orders behind. And he's not alone. When the government collapses under the weight of this administration's unlimited debt policy or our enemies decide now is the right time to pick the low-hanging fruit called America, we'll be ready with our handguns and rifles. Why should anyone be depressed?

"...we'll be ready with our... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

"...we'll be ready with our handguns and rifles."

Hahahaha. Bring it on, Ahmadinejad! (No fighter planes, please, that would be cheating.)

A "dark mood?" Rac... (Below threshold)
Sean P:

A "dark mood?"

Racist!

You can site sources.... (Below threshold)
Dennis:

You can site sources.
You can cite sources.
Don't always believe your spellchecker.

Wait, I'm confused.<p... (Below threshold)
mojo:

Wait, I'm confused.

The heavily-armed "gun nuts" will be living in tents, but the totally-helpless-without-the-government Obamanauts will be in houses?

I don' thin' so, Lucy...

Not tents. Tent-trailers... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

Not tents. Tent-trailers.

Hey folks, here's a leader... (Below threshold)
groucho:
At least Obamas good for on... (Below threshold)
914:

At least Obamas good for one sector of the economy.

Not even from My cold dead fingers Obama.

Bachmann/Palin 2012... (Below threshold)
914:

Bachmann/Palin 2012

Another lib upset that the ... (Below threshold)
OLDPUPPYMAX:

Another lib upset that the 2nd amendment makes it so much more difficult for the clearly good and necessary advent of a Marxist dictatorship.




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