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When all else fails, crack down on the law-abiding folks

Last year, Boston had a ten-year-high in murder rates. And this year is looking no better -- six homicides since January 1 already (two more than the same time period last year), and many more non-fatal shootings. The people are demanding that the city do something, and the learned solons of Beantown are quick to act when their jobs may be on the line.

When problems refuse to be solved by the old methods, new ones are often required. Politicians need to look at new, novel approaches that might curb the crisis.

Unfortunately, the leaders in Boston can't quite grasp that. Instead, they are "stuck on stupid" and returning to variations on the classic liberal themes: don't single out the bad guys, blame everyone.

So, to keep criminals from shooting people, they're cracking down on those who buy bullets.

Their ideas so far are rather visionary, such as requiring guns to "micro-stamp" their serial numbers on the shell casings they fire. Other notions are restricting how much ammunition someone can buy at once and recording who buys bullets.

The irony is, there is a simple solution to their problem, one readily visible just across the border here in New Hampshire: it's called "punishing the guilty." We don't believe in punishing everyone just because a few act irresponsibly; we make examples of them, partly to encourage others to not follow their lead.

But that's not sufficiently nuanced for Massachusetts, it seems.

And so the bodies continue to pile up.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference When all else fails, crack down on the law-abiding folks:

» Liberty1st Blog linked with Micro-Stamping Reappears

» Say Anything linked with Boston Considering New Ammunition Guidelines

Comments (15)

But Jay, what would punishi... (Below threshold)

But Jay, what would punishing the guilty do to solve the real problem? Private gun ownership is a blight upon humanity, just ask the UN. If everone on Earth was allowed to own personal firearms, what would the UN peacekeeping missions do?

/liberal thought on gun ownership

How complicated do you thin... (Below threshold)

How complicated do you think it will be to invent a die that can 1) act quickly enough to strike an image on the shell during a firing, 2) be strong enough to remain sharp after repeated firing while being "micro" 3) and be tamper-proof to prevent would-be crimminals from filing it down (while they are filing off the semi-auto tab)?

How 'bout we just kill those convicted of using a gun in a crime. And not after first waiting 23+ years to kill them, but doing it right outside the courtroom... Public-execution style...
[Maybe a little too harsh, apologies. I am feeling sick to day...]

Chris Rocks' solution to gu... (Below threshold)

Chris Rocks' solution to gun violence is to
tax bullets to $5000 per. That would give
pause to carrying weapons that would cost
upwards of 30 grand per use. That is, except
for those, like Cheney, who view it as pocket

Concealed carry. "I... (Below threshold)
Dan Patterson:

Concealed carry.
"I promise not to hurt you unless you try to hurt me. Then it's game over."
Pretty simple and it works.


After watching the Mythbust... (Below threshold)

After watching the Mythbusters built a crossbow from newpaper, I'm thinking we should ban newspapers. Next?

Hmmmm.Utterly imbe... (Below threshold)


Utterly imbecilic ideas.

1. Bullets are not the highest tech items in the world and are manufactured easily. You charge $5k per bullet and you'll get massive blackmarket importation of bullets. Why? Because bullets would be worth more than heroin and easier to smuggle.

That doesn't even begin to cover covert criminal domestic manufacturing of bullets, which isn't all that difficult to do btw. Even in Britain, with it's tough anti-gun laws, the police are finding dozens of hidden pistol manufacturing sites. With $50k, stock steel and a place to work you could use a triple-axis CAD/CAM milling machine to make your own pistols. The blueprints aren't exactly nuclear secrets.

Chris Rock's a good comedian, let's leave him at that.

2. Stamp a bullet while in the chamber? Oh yeah that's a real frigging great idea. Don't ask me to pay for your liability insurance though. A scheme like this could do two things. Stamp the casing or the bullet itself. Stamp the casing and you could weaken the casing, which is a bad idea because most modern bullets produce enormous amounts of gas pressure in the chamber. Nothing like having the casing burst in the firing chamber to really make your day.

If you stamp the bullet then you have just completely f**ked up the ballistic properties of that bullet. A modern bullet is molded, shaped and designed to provide a balanced flight profile. Stamp it and you alter those properties so it now will do almost anything during flight. And now the shooter has no chance of predicting where that bullet will go which means that, not only has accuracy gone out the window, but each and every single bullet is now as dangerous as playing Russian Roulette with a full pistol.

3. If you've got a couple grand then you too can assemble bullets. Just get a Dillon press, a few thousand bullets, a few thousand casings, some power and a few boxes of primers. Set it up, pull the handle, out pops a finished bullet.

All this is just plain idiotic. The way to control crime, gun or otherwise, is to arrest the criminals and put them in prison. Why is this concept so difficult?

Ed,Bang on. Notice... (Below threshold)


Bang on. Notice the basic flawed premise...criminals buy bullets. Question: What if the criminal just steals the bullets? Aren't they, after all, criminals?

Making something more difficult to do for law abiding citizens will do zilch...zero...nada...to stop a criminal.

Making something cost more for a legitiamte, law abiding buyer will simply do nothing to deter a criminal except make for more worthwhile to steal guns and bullets (after all, you've done nothing but increase the profit margin, not the cost of acquiring) and would gnerate a black market.

Yet Another Image Over Substance proposal that has the opposite of the needed effect.

Wait a minute. This is REAL... (Below threshold)

Wait a minute. This is REALLY stupid. Doesn't it say, "requiring guns to 'micro-stamp' their serial numbers on the shell casings they fire?" That means putting the serial number on the brass casing -- not the bullet. (A cartridge being composed of a bullet, shell casing, powder, and primer.) You could possibly do it by using some of the force used by the firing pin to strike the primer. (Firing pins are quite unique, anyway.) Or you can let the casing expand in the barrel and mark it.

However, ever if you could do it, how do you prevent a criminal from breaking the system (i.e. filing down the die that prints the number.)

And even if you could do that, a revolver doesn't leave a shell casing behind. Even if the bad guy used a semi-automatic equiped with this mechanism, what prevents him from picking up the brass?

This is so stupid it's comical.

Hey, Democrats! This is why I don't support you anymore. The world has problems, and you have no ideas.

Actually, bullets can be ma... (Below threshold)

Actually, bullets can be made with about twenty buck worth of equipment, and materials that are currently, VERY widely available.

What gets me is how this stupidity affects NH. If you go to a Dick's Sporting goods, they ask for your ID to purchase bullets (INCLUDING trap loads of all things)! How dumb is that? Regardless of your age, you have to show ID in this NH store, to prevent people from MA from getting them. WTF?

An unfortunately typical po... (Below threshold)

An unfortunately typical political response, not limited to liberals or conservatives: the need to appear to be DOING SOMETHING. These kinds of reflex actions, while good for temporary poll numbers, generally lead to bad laws.

Just as Chris spoke off-han... (Below threshold)

Just as Chris spoke off-handedly, my comment was
tongue-in-cheek. My apologies to the more
serious minded.

I don't know who first said... (Below threshold)
Mike G in Corvallis:

I don't know who first said it, but ...

"When a citizen appears with a problem, a politician will appear to do something about it."

I guess the logical next st... (Below threshold)

I guess the logical next step is banning the private ownership of lead and brass...

Faith+1 has a good point, one that I've never really heard answered: if someone doesn't care about breaking the laws against murder, why would he care about breaking a gun-control law? I remember seeing a very stupid set of 'alternate-history' posters (in the form of fake front-page newspaper articles) in NYC showing what might have happened if guns had been illegal; Mark Chapman is shown having hit John Lennon with a stick (a smiling Lennon is pictured waving from a hospital bed), some other famous murderer is shown having thrown a ping-pong ball at someone else, etc. Apparently in these alternate histories they were so afraid to have an illegal gun that they had to resort to these feeble murder attempts. Pure delusion.

I guess the logical next st... (Below threshold)

I guess the logical next step is banning the private ownership of lead and brass...

Faith+1 has a good point, one that I've never really heard answered: if someone doesn't care about breaking the laws against murder, why would he care about breaking a gun-control law? I remember seeing a very stupid set of 'alternate-history' posters (in the form of fake front-page newspaper articles) in NYC showing what might have happened if guns had been illegal. According to the posters, Mark Chapman would have bopped John Lennon with a stick (A smiling Lennon was shown waving from a hospital bed), some other famous murderer-- I forget who-- would have thrown a ping-pong ball, and so on. Sheer delusion.

Sorry about the alternate-h... (Below threshold)
Golem 14:

Sorry about the alternate-history posting-- the first one didn't seem to go through (I got a 'connection refused' message), which gave me a chance to revise the post and try again!






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