Sir, you almost had me with your post on 03 December 2013 where you actually tried passing yourself off as someone who might actually support the type of civilian firearms restrictions you wrote about. Clearly a field grade Infantry Officer, such as yourself, would know that all of those things you wrote about aren't even logically consistent. Sir, you have clearly written satire worthy of duffleblog or The Onion, especially given another one of your certainly tongue-in-cheek articles.
Given that you did quite the job getting us proponents of the 2nd Amendment riled on the internet, I would love to take this opportunity to describe to them how you couldn't possibly believe the things you wrote.
First, let me introduce myself. My name is Jason Gillman Jr. I'm the Executive Officer for a signal company in the Michigan Army National Guard. Prior to my commissioning, I served my enlisted time as a scout, and my cadet time hanging around rotary wing aircraft. But I'll just stop there - no one cares about whether or not I was a squad designated marksman or anything. My goal here is to show that you are indeed not the enemy to the 2nd Amendment that you have been able to troll people into believing.
So to start, there's certainly no conceivable way that in serious conversation on the subject of firearms rights that you would completely neglect mentioning the latter half of the 2nd Amendment. After all, it would be intellectually dishonest to do such a thing. In fact, to do so in a serious manner would almost certainly mean that you're trying to curry favor with a crowd that isn't intelligent enough to realize that the 2nd Amendment preserves and enumerates that the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
Then of course there is your "gun plank" for the "Bateman/Pierce" platform. I'll tell you what, Sir: If it weren't for that platform thing and me googling it to get some kind of background, I think you would have pulled one over on this LT.
So let me start by informing the crowd why it would be impossible for you to believe the stuff you wrote.
2nd Amendment proponents of the internet, given his experience in various weapons platforms, a field grade Infantry Officer such as LTC Bateman could not actually believe in the things he has written in regards to the "Permitted firearms categories".
To start, just like no 7-11 has been knocked over with a black powder musket, no 7-11 has been knocked over with an M-107 (Barrett .50 Cal. rifle) either. As for the breech-loading shotgun, LTC Bateman would certainly know that such a thing could still be used to take out a law enforcement officer to get their weapon for more hooligan fun! If LTC Bateman actually supported ridiculous gun control measures, he would not allow such firearms to be possessed by the citizenry.
Last, but certainly not least, LTC Bateman is certainly knowledgeable enough to know that bolt action rifles are certainly not what gun control advocates in the know would want the citizenry equipped with. After all, with decent optics and a trained marksman, engagements of 800 yards (or more) are certainly feasible. Both LTC Bateman and I can tell you that much more terror could be inflicted with a bolt rifle in the hands of a trained marksman than some gang banger hack with a Glock 17 held in a horizontal position. It's much easier to stop someone in the immediate vicinity than someone more than half a kilometer away. Isn't that right, Sir?
Cold dead hands
Sir, I think you should tell the folks that you have riled up that you don't actually believe in this portion of the "Bateman/Pierce" platform. After all, even if prohibited firearms "must" be turned in for destruction, you're smart enough to realize that a good portion of the citizenry wouldn't bother themselves with such nonsense, as evidenced in Connecticut.
Police destruction after case conclusion
LTC Bateman certainly couldn't support this. To do so would just invite politically motivated prosecutors to falsify enough evidence to file charges, only to have them dropped before an actual trial begins, while being able to get any firearms destroyed. Sir, you would never advocate anything like that, would you?
I would imagine that LTC Bateman would realize that such an effort would be futile (if he actually believed in gun control like this, which he doesn't. Right, Sir?). He would be smart enough to realize that such taxes would drive a black market for ammo. Then of course there is option for people to reload.
Folks, in the Army, any officer holding the rank of Captain or higher is going to have at a minimum an undergraduate degree. Field grade officers, such as LTC Bateman, are going to have graduate level coursework. Needless to say, he would have gotten some form of economics education.
Even basic economics would indicate that the buyback pricing schedule that LTC Bateman proposes would not work - the market price for these newly restricted firearms would fetch a much higher premium than 200% (black market or otherwise). Sir, I know you are way to smart to actually think one could seriously argue such a scheme.
Finally, LTC Bateman would know that this wouldn't fly.
He would know that those who take their oath seriously (such as myself) would aggressively fight such a thing, resorting to violence if necessary.
So LTC Bateman, I am correct in everything I posted about your views, correct? You certainly aren't some staff officer who viewed his oath as just a block to be checked to get that officer rank, right?
Feel free to find me on AKO (you should be able to find me with ease) and drop me a line. I would just love to pass along your message that your writing was in jest.
Get it here: http://rrfaae.com/dump/show_2003041.mp3
I've argued that at a logical level, affirmative action kills academic integrity - something that I would assume (and hope) that universities strive for.
So the narrative would go something like this:
If a university admits academically incapable students, then institutional academic integrity declines
Universities want to maintain academic integrity
Academic capability is race neutral
If a university implements an affirmative action policy, then either academically capable applicants get admitted or (inclusive usage) academically incapable applicants get admitted
If a university does not implement an affirmative action policy, then academically capable applicants get admitted
If a university implements an affirmative action policy, then academic capability is not race neutral
Conclusion: If a university wants to maintain institutional academic integrity, then they will not want to implement an affirmative action policy.
I'm quite the fan of propositional logic. Given that, the following shows the symbolized atomic elements that build the propositions, followed by the symbolized propositions:
- A) Universities admitting academically capable students
- B) Universities implement affirmative action policies
- C) Institutional academic integrity declines // Universities want academic integrity to decline
- D) Academic capability is race neutral
The symbolized propositions and conclusion:
~A -> C ~C D B -> (A v ~A) ~B -> A B -> ~D ========= ~C -> ~B
Before I bust out the truth table, let me describe, for those playing along at home who will be seeing this for the first time, how this thing works.
Essentially, the truth table shows the logical outcomes based on all possible combinations of truth values for the propositions (which have been symbolized).
Clearly there are some things that we know are true, or we should expect to be true.
- We should expect that universities don't want academic integrity to decline (we operate under the assumption that C should be false, or ~C)
- We should expect that academic integrity is linked to academic capability of the students (not symbolized in this case).
- Academic capability is race neutral (D should be true). Basically, you can be be black, white, tan, red, or rainbow colored, and still have the ability to be academically capable.
So then the question is: Should affirmative action be implemented (B is true) or not (B is false or ~B)? The argument's conclusion that a necessary condition of maintaining academic integrity (~C) is that affirmative action not be implemented (~B).
What we are looking for is what condition(s) where all the propositions are true, as well as the conclusion (which will be the last column).
So here is the truth table in all its glory:
Take a look at condition 7. We see this is the only condition where all the propositions evaluate to true, as well as the conclusion.
You'll also note that this is a valid argument, as there is no situation where the conclusion evaluates to true while all the propositions evaluate to false.
This is a relatively simple argument. There are those who might try to bring up the "racial diversity is good" argument. Indeed, this argument could be redrawn to take this into account, and the propositions and table be redone. However, think of this: What is the point of a university? I argue that it's to provide advanced education, and that racial diversity for the sake of racial diversity at the expense of academic integrity is bad.
Such a truth table could be drawn up with all its propositions to handle a more advanced situation where the implied assumptions are questioned, however, I would regard such challenges to applied assumptions to be borked.
Before I start, I'd like to make the reader aware that some research may be required, especially when I cite examples. This is because I'm trying to be succinct as possible with the article. With that out of the way...
According to Merriam-Webster, law is defined as:
(1) : a binding custom or practice of a community : a rule of conduct or action prescribed or formally recognized as binding or enforced by a controlling authority
(2) : the whole body of such customs, practices, or rules
Given the above, law should be a logical system - one where facts are plugged into the various precepts defined by law and a consistent result is returned: the law was either violated or not. A functioning society requires law to be logical. If law were not logical, at a minimum, we have individuals deciding what the actual rules are without prior knowledge by the affected parties. At the maximum, we would have anarchy.
Now to be clear: For the purpose of this article, when I say the law should be logical, I'm referring to the system in general, not individual laws. As I just stated, someone should be able to take the known facts, apply them against the applicable laws (even if arbitrarily created and/or wrong from a philosophical standpoint), and get the same result as any other person given the same facts and laws. It could also be induced that law should be logical if we operate under the premise that the LSAT, more specifically the logic games section, is a valid indicator of a person's potential to understand the system of law and to work with it (get into law school and potentially become an attorney).
The good news is that our system of law in the United States isn't totally illogical. The bad news is that it's not totally logical.
Our system of law needs some serious tweaking.
"What's broke about our system of law?!?? What would you fix exactly?" you may ask.
Well, a few things.
Judicial Interpretation of Ambiguous Law
Judicial interpretation is that "lovely" little gem that usually arises out of ambiguously defined law. Ambiguous law exists anywhere from local ordinances all the way up to the constitution (for as great as it is, the Constitution does have some ambiguous parts, which has led to bad things). When you have a situation where judicial interpretation is in play, it means the rules weren't known beforehand. Making rules up during a pickup game of hoops isn't a big deal. Losing your freedoms because some guy in a robe had to determine the rules ex post facto (case law if done at the appellate level) IS a big deal.
What's worse is that there is really no way to have ambiguities resolved until you're involved in litigation. The closest that I know of would be an opinion from an Attorney General, but as far as I know, those aren't legally binding.
So what would I like to see going forward? I would like to see some method of ensuring that before a law is passed, an identical clear answer on legality is able to be parsed by every reasonable (I define reasonable as logical) person given an identical set of facts when applied against the law.
As for what's out there currently, I'm inclined to believe that interpretations of ambiguous law should be made in favor of the defendant. I also like the idea of a requirement that the statute(s) in question to be updated to provide more clarity, and if not done within a certain timeframe, be made void.
In terms of the Constitution, a slightly modified approach to the above would need to be taken. Requiring modification to be made more clear within a certain time frame wouldn't be as feasible; which isn't necessarily a bad thing depending on your political/philosophical views and how you think those changes would turn out. I think that requirement could and should probably be tossed in that case.
As for which way the interpretation should go, I think it should go the way that most benefits the liberties of the individual (this includes corporations as well, as corporations are entities created by individuals).
One example of a good interpretation (that would follow my view) is CADL v. MOC, in which the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that MCL 123.1102 applies to public entities such as libraries.
"But Jason, what about Kelo? It's who private entities duking it out!" Ok, Kelo might confuse some of you, as at the surface, it seems like an issue of a corporation (a group of individuals) vs. an individual. However, the case was really about whether the government could take the property of an individual under eminent domain and hand it over to another private entity. In reality, it was a case of an individual vs. the government, and the government won. Bad interpretation of eminent domain.
Even if we operate under the premise that judicial interpretation is a legitimate way to operate and the case law written was based on an appropriate determination, there are still problems for most in regular society (who of course are still subject to these laws).
Assuming a clearly written statute, it's easy to see if an activity is within the bounds of the law or not. I'm not a lawyer. However, I never found it hard to find relevant sections of statute or administrative law codified in the CFRs (although I have my concerns about the legitimacy of federal agencies making law, that's another topic) and subsequently determine the legality of something assuming that clear language is given. I'm also not the only "regular Joe" that can parse statute. If properly written, statute should be able to be parsed properly by most anyone that can read.
On the other hand, finding potentially applicable case law requires an indexing system like Westlaw, Lexis Nexis, or manually trolling law reports directly. It's not fun. There's a reason that quite a few attorneys I know pawn that job off to some poor law clerk making their way through law school. Even then, a particular piece of case law could require its own interpretation as to the applicability of a particular legal matter. Unlike statutes or CFRs, I'm horrendous at researching case law.
I think there should be some kind of addendum to affected statutory indices to indicate that case law may apply, and what those cases are. I don't see why this would too much of an issue given that
- The statutes in controversy are most likely going to be mentioned in the opinion.
- Topic indexing already happens via the likes of Westlaw or Lexis Nexis.
I don't see why constitutional interpretations couldn't be noted in a similar manner.
So for example, in the case of CADL v. MOC, that case could be mentioned as having affecting case law if an individual were to look up MCL 123.1102
Random side note: I like the idea of codifying common law.
Judicial Reinterpretation of Plain Language
Sweet Jesus, this is probably the worst thing I can think of.
I think the best way to describe this one is with an example.
Amendment 2 of the United States Constitution states:
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
It's pretty clear: The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
It's pretty clear. Shall not be infringed. What is any sort of gun control? Infringement.
What is the following excerpt from DC v. Heller:
Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose: For example, concealed weapons prohibitions have been upheld under the Amendment or state analogues.
It's junk. If you want to qualify "shall not be infringed", do it by amending the Constitution, not by some busted interpretation. It's not even a firearms rights issue - it's a simple fact of reading the PLAIN LANGUAGE presented.
My fix? Kick these clowns off the bench and make sure they don't practice law ever again.
Another random side note: People who think that the Constitution is a "living document" and should be interpreted according to "today's norms" are idiots. I really don't care if that offends you. If we treat it like a 'living document', why should we even have it?
This piece isn't nearly as complete as it could be. I would consider it more of an outline than anything.
Additionally, much more in depth analysis could be applied to different scenarios. But basically here's what I'm trying to get across:
- Regardless of whether the philosophy of individual laws themselves are proper or improper, they should be codified as unambiguously as possible. The idea is that any reasonable person (one capable of logic) can input the same facts and come out with the same result.
- Where there is judicial interpretation resulting in case law being generated, statutory indices should reference that potentially applicable case law exists, and what the case(s) are.
- Judicial reinterpretation of plainly worded language IS VERY BAD. Considering the Constitution a 'living document' is equally absurd.
I guess one final recommendation is that if a citizen notices ambiguity (before getting strung into a criminal case), there should be some form for them to request a remedy to get the language clarified or struck entirely.
And of course, let me know if there are factual errors.
Note: This is a piece that was published in the LSJ. Unfortunately, it seems it's no longer available on their site. This is the unedited version that was submitted. Due to the word limitation, I couldn't go into detail as much as I would have liked.
Given recent events, it's not surprising that gun control is once again a hot topic in the media. One side claims that more people should be armed, with a synergistic call for banishing of no-carry zones. The other side claims that "assault weapons" need to be abolished, along with the cry for more background checks in tandem. Of course, let's not forget something that everyone can agree on - keeping firearms out of the hands of felons! Right?
Now that you've read the opening paragraph, I'll let you in on a little secret - the topic that really requires examination is that of liberty in a more generalized context.
The idea of prohibiting select demographics from certain activities is apropos to more than the firearms debate. After all, we can also agree that sex offenders shouldn't be allowed to live within a certain distance of schools, can't we?
Actually, I would highly disagree.
I'll be blunt: If we can't trust an individual to partake in all of their liberties, while not affecting those of others, they should be trusted with none, and locked up. If we take the stance that those released from confinement after serving their prison sentence should be restricted in their liberties, where do we draw the line? Rather, where do we draw the virtually infinite number of lines?
Should we require background checks prior to allowing access to the Internet? "Preposterous!" you might shout at the screen, spilling coffee all over your keyboard and localized copy of literature du jour. Is it, though?
After all, nowadays it really isn't hard to fire up a slew of virtualized servers and perform a distributed denial of service attack against someone. Such an attack could be used, for example, to destroy someone's online business. If we could even save one business, wouldn't Internet regulation be worth it? Where have I heard that before..
Let's apply the same theory to securities. Shouldn't we ensure that those participating in the various markets aren't dangerous? After all, we can't have the small time investor left holding the bag by those who might paint the tape!
It can be assumed that some formerly incarcerated individuals (felons or otherwise) won't recidivate; Otherwise, why release them?
Who are we to tell them that they should be prohibited from future participation in the stock market, or from running an online company, due to their past transgressions? With their release, we obviously trust them with any number of other liberties, virtually any of which, including free speech, can abet malicious activity.
Attempted regulation of specific liberties is logically flawed. After all, how could one objectively determine the appropriate level of regulation, if any, for a particular liberty (outside of determining whether it directly infringes on another's liberties)? You can't. It's an instantly lost battle.
If we can trust someone with only a certain set of liberties, should we trust them with any? I say absolutely not.
That's right, you read it in the title. Gun control, by its very nature, is logically fallible. In fact, the subject in particular doesn't, and rather, shouldn't, require that statistics about "how many people killed themselves with a gun" or "how many times a firearm was used in self defense" be put in play.
The use of statistics, when done within the context of governmental regulation, does nothing but introduce the use of arbitrary metrics down the road. Indeed, decisions like these need to be made in the private sector, such as when a business needs to decide whether or not to take action y based on information x. But I digress - liberties, including those of firearms ownership, shouldn't be based off of these type of decisions.
For example, someone might claim that saving one life is worth the firearms restrictions placed on x number of other people is worth it. Is it though? Who is to make that call? What if those restrictions save even 10 lives, but as a result, cost the lives of 20 others because they couldn't defend themselves? Who is the government to make that kind of decision? Where do we draw the line? Those previous two questions are examples of exactly WHY statistics shouldn't factor into the debate.
With that out of the way, let's follow the white rabbit of logic and move on.
This was originally posted on RRFAAE back in 24 December, before the old VPS took a dump
No-knock warrants have been controversial ever since they’ve started, and they’ve only been on the rise since the early 1980’s when the war on drugs started gaining steam. Proponents argue that they are needed in cases because evidence may be destroyed in the time between the police announce their presence, show the warrant, and start to conduct a search in an orderly and constitutional, manner. However, these no-knock warrants violate what was desired when the 4th and 5th Amendments were written.
Here is the text of the Fourth Amendment:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
And the Fifth:
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
Quite possibly the largest issue with no-knock warrants are the fact that a majority are used in enforcement of drug control laws (which are themselves questionable in the first place). The problem is due to the fact that, as Radley Balko and Joel Berger state in a Wall Street Journal piece, information about the purported locations of these offenses are suspect since they come from confidential informants, many, if not most, of which are criminals themselves looking to get sentence reductions or a cut of ‘forfeited’ cash assets. Certainly this doesn’t meant that all information is bad, however it has been shown that in many cases, information is either incorrect or completely falsified. That fact alone lies contrary to what the Fourth Amendment says in regards to warrants being issued only on presentation of probable cause and a description of the place to be searched.
With such legal principals such as requiring proof beyond a reasonable doubt to secure a conviction and the 4th and 5th Amendments, it’s quite clear that The Founding Fathers of this country would rather risk the chance of a guilty man going free than an innocent man losing his liberties. The outcome of no-knock warrants gone bad come in direct conflict with the protections envisioned by The Founders.
A recent Fox News article covered a recently botched raid in Minnesota. A SWAT team busted into the house of a Hmong family without announcing their identities or purpose for being there. Vang Khang reacted perfectly rationally when he grabbed his shotgun and fired shots in self defense against an unknown intruder. By the family’s count, twenty-two rounds came in a return volley of fire, and the situation ended when one of the son’s shouted that it was the police. This example fortunately resulted in no injuries or deaths. However, this is an exception to how botched raids normally turn out. Regardless, Mr. Khang’s liberties were improperly revoked without due process - a direct violation of the constitution. An excerpt from the article shows the extent of the violation of the constitution:
In the Minneapolis case, the nature of the tip and precisely what police were looking for were not disclosed; they have not released the search warrant. And it was not clear how far off the mark the informant was in supplying the address.
One of the benefits of the written word is that it gives me an opportunity to organize and present my thoughts in a rational manner, as compared to my initial expression upon first reading that statement. The validity of these warrants are constitutionally questionable as is, but it can’t get more blatantly wrong when the object of the search isn’t disclosed.
As I mentioned, the above example is a rare exception to the normal outcomes of these botched raids. In 2006, 92 year old Kathryn Johnston was killed by law enforcement after she fired in self defense in response to a no-knock raid. Even more disturbing is that according to a Christian Science Monitor article:
Atlanta Police Chief Richard Pennington says the raid was based on an anonymous informant known only as “Sam,” who has since denied ever buying drugs in the house and alleges that he was asked to lie by police.
Someone getting killed as a result of completely false information… I can’t begin to describe my disgust that goes with that.
Probably the thing that makes these tragedies due to constitutional contempt even worse is the fact that those responsible for the raid don’t take responsibility for the act a majority of the time. In a response to a botched raid that Balko discussed in another publication, one of the officers commented “Obviously, there was a breakdown in communication. These were relatively inexperienced officers, and they may have been less than vigilant” (Pg. 5 of the publication, Pg. 9 in the actual PDF). I’d say that there was a breakdown in the system that far exceeded the incompetency of the officers involved in the raid.
Certainly there is a need for raids by SWAT teams, such as hostage situations. I’m not trying to argue against that with this piece. However, these situations very rare in comparison to the no-knock drug searches that are commonly employed by teams currently. These situations don’t even concern searches or warrants. When you’re dealing with a hostage situation, most everyone and their kid brother are going to know anyways. The issue involved here are no-knock warrants and their execution by SWAT teams. As evidenced by the examples shown above (a small sampling), the results of misinformed raids lead to serious liberties lost to the victims.
As stated, with the outcome of the botched serving of no-knock warrants being in direct conflict with the visions of The Founding Fathers, nothing short of their complete ban is adequate to secure the liberties of the citizens of this great country. Certainly knock-announce warrants might have errors, but these aren’t going to lead to the kind of results as described above. This is why any claims made to the rarity of incorrectly served no-knocks should countered with the fact that, as stated above, the mere possibility of an incorrectly served no-knock warrant violates not just Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution as stated earlier, but also the Fifth Amendment as well by denying liberties without due process.
Kahn doesn't know the costs? http://www.detnews.com/article/20110622/BIZ/106220321/1001/State-tax-on-health-claims-would-raise-rates
Yeah, not a pretty post, but I think you get the idea...
So apparently the gym that my wife and I go to has Fox News on the TV. When we went this evening around 2100, Hannity was on the air. Bonus - keeps my mind off the running.
Well, given the whole Casey Anthony verdict, it shouldn't be a surprise what the discussion was in regards to the Hannity staple segment, "The Great American Panel". The problem is, I wouldn't consider one of the panel members a great American after hearing him talk.
Radio talk show host, Michael Gallagher, said that the Anthony case is why we need professional juries and not dopes. What? I'm hoping I can get a transcript of the show tonight, because I shit you not, he said that. He then proceeded to talk about how juries are getting paid off.
What? Are you kidding me? He referenced jurors standing to make $25-30k a shot with their stories. Really? That's a pay off? After the fact to tell a story?
As the segment continued on, it seemed to me that he has the view that the justice system should operate as "guilty until proven innocent", but again, I wasn't able to remember what he said exactly as I was a) Working out and b) Pissed off with his professional juries comment.
Turns out that Bernero's Exec. Assistant makes more than him, to the tune of $10,415.13 more.
While we're at it... highest paid city employee? City Attorney John M Roberts Jr., raking in a total of $149,475.51
Just based on straight wages though, here are the following people making more than the ol' boy Virg.
Name Wages Overtime Misc Final Leave Payment Total Earnings Dept Barg Unit Hourly Rate Position Hire Date Term Date
JEMERSON, MURDOCK 107,245.89 0 1,350.00 0 108,595.89 PARKS EXEC MGMT PLAN $49.65 PKRECDIR 13 09 93
AMBROSE, GERALD 111,915.00 0 150 0 112,065.00 MAYOR EXEC MGMT PLAN $51.81 EXECTAST 01 01 06
SMITH, BRIGHAM C 114,956.22 0 0 0 114,956.22 CITY ATTORNEY EXEC MGMT PLAN $53.59 CTYATTNY 13 03 06