Friday, August 29, 2014

Answer

This is the reason why I asked the question the other day:

The estimated value of the tea in the Boston Tea Party is one million dollars in current funds
9. The financial loss was significant.
It’s estimated that the protestors tossed more than 92,000 pounds of tea into Boston Harbor. That’s enough to fill 18.5 million teabags. The present-day value of the destroyed tea has been estimated at around $1 million.
(source).

Actually, I'm going to quote some of the rest of that:
The Tea Act was a government bailout for a company on the brink of financial collapse, the flailing East India Company, which was deemed to be, in modern terms, “too big to fail.” The legislation gave the East India Company a virtual monopoly on the American tea trade, allowing it to bypass colonial merchants as middlemen and to even undercut the price of smuggled Dutch tea, which was widely consumed in the colonies. Thus, the Tea Act directly threatened the vested commercial interests of Boston’s wealthy merchants and smugglers, such as John Hancock, who fomented the revolt.
In other words, the actual tea partiers had a lot more in common with the occupy people than they do with people who wish to claim their mantle.

In fact, the real issue was more like a corporate subsidy than an actual tax, but the ultimate issue was local decision making ("no taxation without representation").

Many Americans  viewed the Boston Tea Party as an act of vandalism by radicals rather than a heroic patriotic undertaking. People held that private property was sacred and that the vandals should compensate the property owners, in this case, the British East India Company.

Gun Assault Injuries Alone Cost Taxpayers Almost Half a Billion Dollars a Year

Washington Post

It turns out that gun violence isn't just a public safety issue—it's also extremely expensive for taxpayers.

The total national hospital costs associated with firearm assault injuries ballooned to almost $700 million in 2010, according to a new analysis by The Urban Institute. And the bulk of those costs—almost three-quarters of them, to be more precise—aren't being paid for by the perpetrators, victims, or insurance companies, but rather by the American public.

"Most of this cost is paid for by the public, either through public insurance programs such as Medicaid or as uncompensated care for the uninsured," the Institute said in its report. "In a time of restricted public resources, these findings suggest that significant public resources could be saved or redirected if effective gun-violence prevention strategies could be identified."

Bill Gates Joins the Gun Control Movement in Washington



The Daily Beast

Billionaire Michael Bloomberg already had the gun lobby in his sights. Now Bill Gates is donating $1 million for universal background checks—and there’s more where that came from.
Somewhere in a large glass tower in Northern Virginia, there’s a guy who runs guns with a French name having a bad day. With good reason.

It was reported Monday that Bill Gates, Microsoft co-founder and incredibly wealthy guy, and with his wife, Melinda, have given $1 million to Initiative 594 in Washington state. The ballot initiative, if passed by voters on November 4 (and it currently enjoys overwhelming support), will require universal background checks for all firearm purchases in the state.

Gates is only the latest Washington billionaire to give to the effort, with original Amazon investor Nick Hanauer providing crucial early funding, and more recently upping his overall donation to $1.4 million. Additionally, Gates’s Microsoft co-founder, Paul Allen, has provided $500,000 for the cause.

You may want to actually bone up on the Constitution before you defend it.

It seems that Ammoland took a poll and found a significant percentage of its readers believe that armed revolution is somehow an option.


Once again, From the United States Constitution, Article III, Section iii, states:

Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
I know you people have serious problems with reading and understanding the English language, but this is pretty clear in its meaning.

As Joseph Story said about this:
The propriety of investing the national government with authority to punish the crime of treason against the United States could never become a question with any persons, who deemed the national government worthy of creation, or preservation. If the power had not been expressly granted, it must have been implied, unless all the powers of the national government might be put at defiance, and prostrated with impunity.
The Second Amendment in no way repeals this section of the Constitution--no matter what your diseased minds may tell you.

While you may wish to believe that "libtards" somehow are the ones destroying the Constitution, you are obviously wrong in that assertion if you support people who would overthrow this nation by force of arms for whatever reason you would go against the government run under the framework of the United States Constitution.

I strongly suggest that you reassess your position on this matter.

Should you find that you still advocate the use of arms against the United States realise that you are a traitor.

Those aren't my words, those are the words of the document you claim to support.

While this song is about Palestinians, I think this applies to right wing assholes who claim to hate Muslims while being willing to wage war against their own nation:

Meen erhabe?

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Why Presser v. Illinois is the progunner's worst nightmare.

Of course, Scalia dismissed it in his exposition of mendacity called District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008), but he also dismissed such pearls as:
With obvious purpose to assure the continuation and render possible the effectiveness of such forces the declaration and guarantee of the Second Amendment were made. It must be interpreted and applied with that end in view.
and
To make this view of the case still more clear, we may remark, that the phrase, "bear arms," is used in the Kentucky constitution as well as in our own, and implies, as has already been suggested, their military use. The 28th section of our bill of rights provides, "that no citizen of this State shall be compelled to bear arms, provided he will pay in equivalent, to be ascertained by law." Here we know that the phrase has a military sense, and no other; and we must infer that it is used in the same sense in the 26th section, which secures to the citizen the right to bear arms. A man in the pursuit of deer, elk and buffaloes, might carry his rifle every day, for forty years, and, yet, it would never be said of him, that he had borne arms, much less could it be said, that a private citizen bears arms, because he has a dirk or pistol concealed under his clothes, or a spear in a cane. So that, with deference, we think the argument of the court in the case referred to, even upon the question it has debated, is defective and inconclusive
Since they "weren't helpful".

That's putting it mildly--they totally contradict your position.

After all, why not dismiss anything which shows that what you are saying is total bollocks?

The American people are too happily ignorant to notice anyway.

Anyway...

Presser basically is making the same tired argument we hear over and over about being part of an unorganised militia, except that term didn't have actual currency back then in US Federal law.  The court tossed that argument since Presser wasn't part of the enrolled militia.

Even better, Presser actually addressed the incorporation issue.  If Heller is a joke, then McDonald v. Chicago is even worse of a joke since Presser came to the correct conclusion about the matter:
We think it clear that the sections under consideration, which only forbid bodies of men to associate together as military organizations, or to drill or parade with arms in cities [116 U.S. 252, 265]   and towns unless authorized by law, do not infringe the right of the people to keep and bear arms. But a conclusive answer to the contention that this amendment prohibits the legislation in question lies in the fact that the amendment is a limitation only upon the power of congress and the national government, and not upon that of the state.
Yeah, the Second Amendment relates to congress' power under article I, Section 8, Clauses 15 & 16--not state power.

I thought that Alito was on the ball when he asked if congress' power was "plenary" in the Heller.  Yeah, it is which means that the answer is:
The right is related to the militia and congress' power to arm it
Seriously, you had it right in US v Rybar, 103 F.3d 273 (3d Cir. 1996), WHAT MADE YOU GO FOR THE INTELLECTUALLY DISHONEST POSITION??? DIDN'T THINK YOU WOULD GET CAUGHT????

Back to the story,  Presser concerned people openly carrying while pretending to be a militia and claiming their Second Amendment right, but the court swatted it down saying:
It is undoubtedly true that all citizens capable of bearing arms constitute the reserved military force or reserve militia of the United States as well as of the states, and, in view of this prerogative of the general government, as well as of its general powers, the states cannot, even laying the constitutional provision in question out of view, prohibit the people from keeping and bearing arms, so as to deprive the United States of their rightful resource for maintaining the public security, and disable the people from performing their duty to the general government. But, as already stated, we think [116 U.S. 252, 266]   it clear that the sections under consideration do not have this effect.
Oh dear, it's that nasty civic right interpretation.

And, unlike Justice Stevens' version, this one actually got it right on incorporation.

Presser even compares the First Amendment claim:
We have not been referred to any statute of the United States which confers upon the plaintiff in error the privilege which he asserts. The only clause in the constitution which, upon any pretense, could be said to have any relation whatever to his right to associate with others as a military company, is found in the first amendment, which declares that 'congress shall make no laws ... abridging ... the right of the people peaceably to assemble and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.' This is a right which it was held in U. S. v. Cruikshank, above cited, was an attribute of national citizenship, and, as such, under the protection of, and guarantied by, the United States. But it was held in the same case that the right peaceably to assemble was not protected by the clause referred to, unless the purpose of the assembly was to petition the government for a redress of grievances. The right voluntarily to associate together as a military company or organization, or to drill or parade with arms, without, and independent of, an act of congress or law of the state authorizing the same, is not an attribute of national citizenship. Military organization and military drill and parade under arms are subjects especially under the control of the government of every country. They cannot be claimed as a right independent of law.
By now, I am laughing my arse off since this case is a serious nugget when looked at in relation to the farce that is Heller-McDonald.  Combine Presser with Miller, and Heller-McDonald is the serious odd man out.

As I have been pointing out, it is a tough stretch to say that carrying weapons in public outside the national defence context is protected (again, the US Constitution makes it clear it addresses NATIONAL Defence and no where mentions self-defence).

I keep mentioning that if the law is silent on the topic, one cannot assume or imply it is somehow addressed, which is something else Presser mentions:
Under our political system they are subject to the regulation and control of the state and federal governments, acting in due regard to their respective prerogatives and powers. The constitution and laws of the United States will be searched in vain for any support to the view that these rights are privileges and immunities of citizens of the United States independent of some specific legislation on the subject.
In the case of the Second Amendment, it is silent on personal uses if firearms, unlike state constitutions which specifically mention self-defence.  That was something Justice Stevens pointed out in his dissent.  In fact, some State Constitutions  offer a greater level of protection for "gun rights" than the US Constitution.

Anyway, I think Presser makes it pretty clear the right is tied to militia service:
It cannot be successfully questioned that the state governments, unless restrained by their own constitutions, have the power to regulate or prohibit associations and meetings of the people, except in the case of peaceable assemblies to perform the duties or exercise the privileges of citizens of the United States, and have also the power to control and regulate the organization, drilling, and parading of military bodies and associations, except when such bodies or associations, are [116 U.S. 252, 268]   authorized by the militia laws of the United States. The exercise of this power by the states is necessary to the public peace, safety, and good order. To deny the power would be to deny the right of the state to disperse assemblages organized for sedition and treason, and the right to suppress armed mobs bent on riot and rapine.
As a nation has the right to national defence, a state has the right to legislate for the general welfare.
The ability to regulate or prohibit arms is something which is necessary to the public peace, safety, and good order.
 
It is not for judges to make law, but to interpret it.  It is even less their place for judges to amend the constitution outside the written constitutional framework.  The court went well beyond any constitutional powers that it was granted  by making this decision for there is no constitutional provision which allows for judicial reviews of laws (that comes from Marbury v. Madison, 5 U.S. 137 [1803]).

I keep wishing that someone with more academic clout/prestige would take up these arguments, but it seems that I am the little boy who is saying the emperor has no clothes here.

But, I have loads of evidence he is as naked as a jaybird.

California Mulls Bill To Remove Guns From Potential Offenders

Quote of the day

The argument on the pro gun side is "When handled responsibly and under ideal conditions, guns are a harmless tool"
My argument is...people can't even tell when an Onion article about things pro-gunners do or say is a joke, and people like this are EVERYWHERE.