Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Best of Me Symphony

Dodgeblogium : BOMS end of Jan. Late as usual.... go take a look.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Gay Rights and Gun Rights

toledoblade.com -- Gay rights, gun rights cross here Interesting article, by someone not very in tune with guns....

A nice quote from the Pink Pistols web site:
"Socially, the [gay] and shooting communities are both quite similar. Both are often insular and can be closeted, and both have a stereotypical preconceptions about what the other is like."
Short and to the point.

Good Guys 3, Bad Guys 0

Home Owner Shoots Invader You wake up and find 3 strangers in your home in the middle of the night. What do you do?

This homeowner shot at the three, who ran like rabbits.

15 minutes later a local hospital reports a man with a gunshot wound to the chest. His two buddies are being held for questioning.

A gun was found outside the home in the snow.

Friday, January 26, 2007

You Say You Want Energy Independence?

RealClearPolitics - Energy Independence? Use capitalism to encourage the change.

The problem? Well it may not be government, but government isn't helping.
By my count, 24 of the 34 State of the Union addresses since the oil embargo of 1973 have proposed solutions to our energy problem.

The result? In 1973 we imported 34.8 percent of our oil. Today we import 60.3 percent.
So much for energy policy. You want to fix our addiction to oil? Do 3 things: Tax gas, drill for oil in the US, and go nuclear. Ethanol my sound good to the farmers, but it is not likely to work anymore than Jimmy Carter's synfuels came to anything in the 70s.

Gas Tax:
Just look at last summer. Gas prices spike to $3 -- with the premium going to Vladimir Putin, Hugo Chavez and assorted sheiks, rather than the U.S. treasury -- and, presto, SUV sales plunge, the Prius is cool and car ads once again begin featuring miles per gallon ratings.
Domestic Production:
No one pretends that this fixes everything. But a million barrels a day from the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is 5 percent of our consumption. In tight markets, that makes a crucial difference.
Nuclear:
What about nuclear waste? Well, coal produces toxic pollutants, as does oil. Both produce carbon dioxide that we are told is going to end civilization as we know it. These wastes are widely dispersed and almost impossible to recover once they get thrown into the atmosphere.

Nukes produce waste as well, but it comes out concentrated -- very toxic and lasting nearly forever, but because it is packed into a small manageable volume, it is more controllable. And it doesn't pollute the atmosphere. At all.

There is no free lunch. Producing energy is going to produce waste. You pick your poison and you find a way to manage it.
How come the Global Warming crowd isn't screaming for nuclear? Do they want to freeze in the dark? [Hat tip to Ink Well]

82-year-old man shoots goblin

Elderly Stowe man shoots burglar - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Another octogenarian defends himself with a gun from a home invader.

This reminds me of another story from earlier in the month. How the heck is an old man (or woman) supposed to defend himself from your average urban goblin without a firearm? Maybe someday someone on the Left will answer that question.
The burglar was hospitalized in stable condition this morning and will likely be charged. The homeowner probably will not face any charges, police said.
That should be, "the homeowner definitely won't be charged," but PA doesn't have a reasonable version of the Castle Doctrine.

Good Guys 1, Bad Guys 0

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Gleanings from iFeminists.com

Unfortunately, slavery is alive and well today. The Beaufort Gazette: Italy arrests 2,000 in human trafficking They think they put a dent in it, but didn't kill it. Prostitution is a big issue of course, but forcing women (mostly) to work in sweat shops is another.

No women driver jokes please. (And no male-driver jokes either.)Women drivers? They’re safer than men - Science - MSNBC.com

What a surprise, a left-coast university has only one thing to say to pregnant students. UCLA Counselor Slammed for Telling Pregnant Student to Get Abortion. No alternatives were mentioned and they admit they aren't set up to offer any services. There are abortion providers on campus of course. What happened to "choice?" That requires more than one option.

[hat tip iFeminists]

Why Do They Always Ignore Self-defense?

Stalking: Living in fear 01/25/07 They even talk about "Self Protection," but not about self-defense. Call police. Go to a shelter. Run. Hide. Pray.

The statistics are telling.
An estimated 76 percent of women who were murdered and 85 percent of those attacked were stalked the year before the crime, according to the Michigan Department of Human Services.
They do get some things right.

Stalking is not OK. Incessant calling, unwanted gifts, surprise visits: None of these things is romantic or whatever. No means No. And the that applies to calls, contacts, letters, everything.

Trust your instincts. You have them for good reason.
"The scenario is a person ends a relationship and that person they dumped won't go away and accept that the relationship is over," [executive director of Ann Arbor's SafeHouse Center, Barbara] Niess said. "Or many times the victim thinks they have the situation under control and don't take it seriously until it escalates into something serious."

Niess believes that most women have a lower expectation for safety than men.

"When you think something's not right, it probably isn't," Niess said. "Women usually underestimate their gut."
But what to do about it?

Michigan passed a concealed carry law a few years back. Women who can pass a background check are certainly in a position to do more than hope for the best, or hide in a shelter. (35 days is the maximum stay. What happens after that?)

Self-defense is a human right.

Gay Adoption

Independent - Gay Adoption: True stories England is about to start enforcing an anti-gay discrimination law that has some up in arms. The Catholic Church is saying they may have to close their adoption agencies since discrimination in services is forbidden.

It is, of course, a tempest in a teapot - or maybe it's just political posturing.
no gay couple in their right mind would seek the services of a Catholic adoption agency, given the church's views on the issue of homosexuality.
Given that Catholic Charities accounts for about 4% of adoptions in England, if they stamp their feet and go home, it will likely make no difference at all.

Anyway, this is a good article that follows some real-world gay adoptions through the quagmire of prejudice - even among self-described liberals - and shines some truth on the matter. Like how gay couples are more likely to adopt older kids, or kids with emotional problems than are straight couples. Or Consider
One little girl, in particular, ... had been severely sexually abused. It was agreed by all the professionals involved that she would benefit from a two-parent family, but it was also felt that she would gain from slow, cautious reintroduction to men in her life. A lesbian couple rose to the challenge and the result was the emergence of a child with hope for the future, against all odds.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Fake Cop Shot in Attempted Home Invasion

Police: Brothers Shoot, Beat Home Invaders - Local News
The man hit Suarez in the face with a flashlight, the report said. Suarez screamed for his brother to help. Adam Suarez showed up and shot the man in the leg.

Anthony Giuffre, 19, of Sebastian, was taken to Holmes Regional Medical Center in Melbourne where he is in police custody. He faces charges involving the home invasion, and impersonating a police officer.
The 2 brothers will not be charged for defending themselves.

The 2nd guy got away, but police have a car description and tag number, so with a little luck they may catch him as well.

The Justice System Cannot Save You

Justice:Salt Lake woman stabbed to death; husband in custody - ABC4.com Neighbors called police because of screams. By the time police got there, she had been stabbed to death.

They caught the goblin, but that won't do her any good at all. And since murdering your wife does not - in most states - rise to the level of "special circumstances," this goblin will probably not face the death penalty. (Even assuming Utah has one; I don't know if they do or not.)

The system had taken him in recently.
ABC 4 News has learned [The Mutant] was in jail as recently as a month ago on charges of domestic violence.
That interaction with the system did not stop him.
Experts tell ABC 4 News this case is yet another reminder to anyone who is the victim of repeat domestic violence to get help.
They recommend you call a hotline. Hotlines are fine, but shelters, restraining orders, the police and courts can only do so much. They can't arrest someone before a crime is committed. In the instant that you face violence, you are on your own, or as the Offspring said, "By the time you hear the siren, It's already too late"

If you are faced with a stalker or abusive ex, I believe you should get a little more aggressive help. Self-defense is a human right.

A Human Right
Image Copyright Oleg Volk

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Gotta admit that I'm a little bit confused

Pink Floyd Anumals30 years ago one of my favorite albums (that's what we called them when vinyl ruled the day) was Animals, by Pink Floyd.

Gods, but I feel old.
Gotta admit that I'm a little bit confused
Sometimes it seems to me as if I'm just being used
Gotta stay awake, gotta try and shake off this creeping malaise
If I don't stand my own ground, how can I find my way out of this maze

Deaf, dumb and blind, you just keep on pretending
That everyone's expendable, and no one has a real friend
And it seems to you the thing to do would be to isolate the winner
Everything's done under the sun
But you believe at heart everyone's a killer

Who was born in a house full of pain
Who was trained not to spit in the fan
Who was told what to do by the man
Who was broken by trained personnel
Who was fitted with collar and chain
Who was given a pat on the back
Who was breaking away from the pack
Who was only a stranger at home
Who was ground down in the end
Who was found dead on the phone
Who was dragged down by the stone
Who was dragged down by the stone
from Dogs on the album Animals, by Pink Floyd.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Good Guys 1, Bad Guys 0

First Coast News - Georgia State News - Intruder Shot to Death in Hall County
"The perpetrator fired several shots toward the homeowner," [Hall County Sheriff's Maj. Jeff] Strickland said. "The homeowner was able to return fire, striking and killing the perpetrator."

The homeowner, who was not injured, was acting in self-defense and will not face charges, Strickland said.

Restraining Orders Offer NO GUARANTEE

Protection from Abuse The sad case of a restraining order that did not restrain.

But unlike most articles, this one highlights the fact that court orders do not guarantee safety.
[Kate Faragher Houghton, community educator with the Family Violence Project -- one of the eight regional offices in the Maine Coalition to End Domestic Violence network] said national studies show that about 50 percent of offenders abide by the terms of a protection order
Look at it from the other side. Half of all restraining orders fail. If the breaks on your car only worked at half the stops signs you came to, how much would you drive?
"It has been my experience that when people get protection from abuse orders, (the effectiveness) really depends on the perpetrator and that person's state of mind," said Jo Horn, executive director of Rape Crisis Assistance and Prevention in Waterville.

"But almost always, they are violated to some degree," she said. "It is almost like the perpetrator looks at them like a kind of challenge."
While this article does cover the need for a safety plan beyond getting a restraining order, the idea of self-defense is never broached. This is sad.

In the instant when you are faced with a violent individual, the police - even assuming you can call them before you are attacked - are many minutes away. You are on your own and need to be prepared to defend yourself. This is true for everyone, but someone with a stalker or abusive ex, who is considering a restraining order needs to seriously consider what will happen if that restraining order will be one of the 50% that are not effective.

Self-defense is a human right.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Eighth Second Amendment Carnival

Free Constitution: Second Amendment Carnival VIII The current edition of the 2nd Amendment Carnival is worth a look!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

An Interesting Use of Solar Power

Solar power eliminates utility bills in U.S. home - Boston.com With the price of electricity going up, I wonder what the pay-back will be?
Strizki runs the 3,000-square-foot house with electricity generated by a 1,000-square-foot roof full of photovoltaic cells on a nearby building, an electrolyzer that uses the solar power to generate hydrogen from water, and a number of hydrogen tanks that store the gas until it is needed by the fuel cell.

In the summer, the solar panels generate 60 percent more electricity than the super-insulated house needs. The excess is stored in the form of hydrogen which is used in the winter -- when the solar panels can't meet all the domestic demand
I would imagine that the cost of the fuel cell is still high, but "early adopters" of any technology are the people who drive the cost down for the rest of us.

Good Guys 1, Bad Guys 0

Police: Shooting appears to be self-defense in burglary 70-year-old defends himself against a much younger man.
DAYTONA BEACH -- Under the harsh glare of a flashlight, Walter Watson recognized the intruder who was trespassing on his property.

But when the suspect threatened to kill the 70-year-old homeowner, police said Watson responded with at least two gunshots, leaving the much younger burglar bleeding on the sidewalk.
He was shot twice with a 38 Special revolver: once in the arm, and once in the chest. The injured guy is charged with burglary and aggravated battery.

Signs in the Window, Will NOT Prevent Crime

School Shootings: You can't sterilize the world This is an article by a police officer about a school shooting.

His primary target is hand-wringing, unthinking people who want to "do something," even if (or maybe especially when) that something is counter-productive.
Society's well meaning, but totally deluded sheep, are obsessed with their little white signs and placards declaring this building or that to be a "No Gun Zone" or "No Weapons Permitted". (Unless of course you are a homicidal maniac and don't give a damn about the sign, then feel free.) Ask any cop how effective a civil protection order or restraining order is. It's a piece of paper, nothing more.
As if a sign that said, "No Crime Allowed on Premises," would have an impact.

Then there is the Monday morning quarterbacking going on. People forget what happened when Islamic terrorists took over a school in Beslan, Russia. They remember people died when the authorities stormed the place, and ignore the fact that students were being tortured before the authorities acted.
Without a doubt the true Monday morning quarterbacks are going to take the SWAT team in Colorado to task because one person died, rather than congratulate them for saving the lives of the rest. Talking heads and society's sheep will opine as to whether a longer negotiation would have been appropriate and you can bet that some spineless weenie will step up and offer that greater gun control would have prevented the crime. Again, to that I would offer that we need greater box cutter control.
But the key point for me is the description of targets of interest to terrorists, and that schools fall squarely in the middle of that field.
If you are a psychopath with a statement to make, whether you are an ordinary lunatic or a member of a political/religious fanatic cell, you need a few ingredients to terrorize the nation. First you need a ready supply of helpless victims. It used to be an airplane full of hostages, but that has become too difficult to pull off. Next you need the tools to threaten and kill. Any firearm will do, but again, knives work too. Homemade bombs are easy enough to make with household chemicals. Of course, you need a willing media to broadcast the horror into every living room in the nation — live if possible.

I'm not giving away any closely guarded state secrets when I say that every school in America is a potential cherry for the determined bad guy. It doesn't matter what their motivation is. What would you do if a team of four or five terrorists took over a school in your town?
We need to wake up to the realities of the world we live in, and stop letting the sheep set policy for dealing with the wolves - because they like to believe that we would all be sheep if given the chance. But that isn't the case.

And if we don't recognize the REAL threats, we won't protect against them.
Someone explain to me how it is that with all of this political posturing, self-congratulatory back patting and "feel good" legislation that one loan sicko with a gun can get into a school, terrorize the student body, commit unspeakable acts of depravity against children and murder them? Didn't they read the sign?

How can this be? It's because psychopaths and deviant sickos aren't dissuaded by shiny signs or placards. They can't be stopped by surveillance cameras. Any determined person can get into a public building if they try hard enough.

So, how do you stop an armed sociopath? Perhaps you stop them with a gun, wielded by a well-trained and competent good guy? Nope. Can't do that. Guns are inherently evil and any person, though well-intentioned, with a gun cannot be trusted. We can't turn our schools into armed camps. Just think of the psychological harm the children would endure being in the presence of an armed police officer. Why they might revert to bedwetting or thumb sucking just from the sight of an evil firearm.
But they won't wake-up and smell the coffee, because "the truth hurts."
Are we more concerned with protecting our egos or do we really want to stop homicidal maniacs from using our schools as shooting galleries or places to act out some twisted deviant fantasy?
But I am just cynical enough to believe that a large number of folks in government don't want to stop the slaughter. They find it too convenient to be able to dance in the blood after these incidents. Convenient and effective as a means of promoting any one of several agendas that all point toward more state control of life. They are actually much farther down this road in the UK than we are in the US, but I see us on the same road. [Hat tip OFCC]

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Maybe He Can't Read

news of the weird: HE’D BEEN WARNED
Burglar Sheldon Reece, 32, was shot in the abdomen by homeowner Abel Sisneros in Fort Worth, Texas, in December. According to a report in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, to enter the house, Reece had to boldly disregard two signs outside: “Warning. Nothing inside is worth risking your life for. Owners of this property are highly skilled to protect life, liberty and property from criminal attacks” and “No trespassing. Violators will be shot. Survivors will be shot again.”
Or maybe he thought they were bluffing.

More Than His Pride Was Injured

JusticeWIStv.com Columbia, SC: Woman shoots carjacker in Two Notch Wal-Mart parking lot He is going to have trouble living this down.

A would-be car-jacker approached a couple as they were getting into their car and demanded they keys to the vehicle at gunpoint.
That's when the woman acted. She opened the passenger door and got her pistol from the glove box. She says she fired about five shots at the suspect, who ran away.
Police caught up with him at a local hospital. He had been shot in the buttocks.

The woman who shot the goblin will not be charged.

Good Guys 1, Bad Guys 0. [KABA]

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Are Americans Abandoning Marriage?

51% of Women Are Now Living Without Spouse - New York Times No matter what the social conservatives like to pretend, the era of Ozzie and Harriet is over. (Now we have Ozzie Osborne, not Ozzie Nelson) It is unlikely that the clock will be turned back.
In 2005, 51 percent of women said they were living without a spouse, up from 35 percent in 1950 and 49 percent in 2000.

Coupled with the fact that in 2005 married couples became a minority of all American households for the first time, the trend could ultimately shape social and workplace policies, including the ways government and employers distribute benefits.
It is an interesting article. Women divorced after 33 years, and women never married share their views. For example:
Shelley Fidler, 59, a public policy adviser at a law firm, has sworn off marriage. She moved from rural Virginia to the vibrant Adams Morgan neighborhood of Washington, D.C., when her 30-year marriage ended.

“The benefits were completely unforeseen for me,” Ms. Fidler said, “the free time, the amount of time I get to spend with friends, the time I have alone, which I value tremendously, the flexibility in terms of work, travel and cultural events.”
And if you look at the younger groups, the trend is clear.
Between 1950 and 2000, the share of women 15-to-24 who were married plummeted to 16 percent, from 42 percent. Among 25-to-34-year-olds, the proportion dropped to 58 percent, from 82 percent.
The truth is stated by William H. Frey, a demographer with the Brookings Institution:
“For better or worse, women are less dependent on men or the institution of marriage,” Dr. Frey said. “Younger women understand this better, and are preparing to live longer parts of their lives alone or with nonmarried partners. For many older boomer and senior women, the institution of marriage did not hold the promise they might have hoped for.”
Still the pundits and politicians will continue to discuss the situation as (they think) it was in the 1950s and try to turn back the clock.

As someone once said, "A woman needs a man, like a fish needs a bicycle."

Another Attempt To Paint Conservatives in a Bad Light

Psychology Today is once again painting conservatives in a bad light. I thought I would review their descriptions of liberals and repay the "compliment."

1. "Liberals are messier than conservatives, their rooms have more clutter... Conservatives are neater, and their rooms are cleaner, better organized, more brightly lit"

Liberals suffer from chronic disorganization. This is reflected in their complete lack of ability to get things done. Conservatives, on the other hand, being gainfully employed in industry, recognize that time wasted looking for things that should have been put away is money lost. As a result of this disorganization - their parents never taught them or forced them to clean their room - liberals have a much harder time achieving financial success. (There is a section of the document that goes into how MBAs and MDs are more conservative... success breeds conservatism or does conservatism breed success?)

2. "Multiple studies find that liberals are more optimistic."

Conservatives are more grounded in reality than liberals. When a liberal sees a new government program or entitlement, they are likely to "hope for the best" and feel good that the program has been proposed/enacted. Conservatives are more likely to view the new program in light of the success or failure of older similar programs, and resist the temptation to engage in wishful thinking.

3. "Liberal women are more likely than conservative women to enjoy books, poetry, writing in a diary, acting, and playing musical instruments."

Conservative women have less free time than liberal women because conservative women are busier being successful professionals, raising families (conservatives have more kids than their liberal cohorts), etc.

4. "Conservatives have a greater desire to reach a decision quickly and stick to it, and are higher on conscientiousness, which includes neatness, orderliness, duty, and rule-following."

Conservatives, being busy professionals understand that decisions need to be made in a timely fashion, while liberals are content to be wishy-washy and agonize over decisions forever and are not concerned whether or not any action is ever taken. Liberals are also less likely to be conscientious workers, are less likely to feel bound to honor commitments or feel a duty to anyone or anything. (Does liberals low score on rule-following mean they are more likely to be criminals?)

The section on musical tastes (country and western versus modern jazz) was ridiculous. Is musical taste based on political ideology or residence state? In other words do you listen to jazz because everyone at the (urban) office does, or do you listen to country music because everyone in your family does? And where does Hip-hop come into play? Do more Democrats or Republicans listen to rap music, and why did the authors of this "study" ignore one of the biggest genres in music today? Is it that they have negative views of hip hop and didn't want to associate the liberal intelligencia with it, the way they tried to paint conservatives as a bunch of hillbillies that listen to (that horrible) country music? No bias in this survey.

Let's look at one other difference between liberals and conservatives: Charity giving.
In 2000, religious people gave about three and a half times as much as secular people — $2,210 versus $642. And even when religious giving is excluded from the numbers, Mr. Brooks found, religious people still give $88 more per year to nonreligious charities.
So a basic difference between conservatives and liberals seems to be who gives more to charity. Does this stem from a deep seated desire to disavow all responsibility for their fellow man on the part of liberals? (Could the phrase, "We will make the government responsible, so I don't have to be responsible," describe the position of liberals?)

I could go on, but I trust the point is clear. This study may or may not be valid, and I have my doubts, but the conclusions are warped by the bias of the researchers.

[Hat tip to Triticale]

Death From Stupidity

Houstonist: Armed and ... harmless OK, this one the guy did it on his own.

Is there a state in the Union that more epitomizes guns than does Texas? So why would you pretend to be armed and threaten someone who is obviously watching you? I guess it didn't occur to this guy - who was armed with a tool wrapped in towel - that he might actually run into someone with a gun.

He did.
A guy sneaking around a south Harris County bar last night made a fatal mistake when he pretended to pull a gun on a pistol-totin' Texan: The guy ended up being shot to death in what police believe was a case of self-defense.
A reasonable threat of death or grave bodily harm is the test. If you pull what looks like a weapon, a reasonable person is going to respond accordingly. In some parts of this country, that means they will draw their own weapons.

The shooter had to go down to the sheriff's office for an interview ("every bullet has a lawyer attached"), but he will not be charged for defending himself. [KABA]

Instapundit and a positive article about guns in the NYT


A Rifle in Every Pot - New York Times Absolutely incredible.... The New York Times prints an article that is completely positive about guns and includes some history
the ownership of firearms was widely mandated during Colonial times, and the second Congress passed a statute in 1792 requiring adult male citizens to own guns.
Not permitted, but required to own guns. [Hat tip to Bitter]

Monday, January 15, 2007

Death From Stupidity - This one took a committee

NewsFactor Network | Woman Dies in Water-Drinking Contest for Nintendo Wii I wonder if the radio station even bothered to check the health implications of this "contest." Well no of course they didn't, and they didn't heed a warning given during the contest.
During the contest, a nurse called in to the station warn of the dangers of drinking too much water quickly. Her worries were dismissed by the disc jockey, The Bee reported.

Experts said too much water can dilute the body's chemical balance, or even cause organs such as the brain to swell.
Of course this isn't the first time that a death from water intoxication was in the news, and I am sure it won't be the last. (The root of "intoxication" is "toxic." Oxygen will kill you if you get too much of it.)

The winning contestant in this insanity contest was just as clueless.
"You don't think water's going to kill you," Lucy Davidson told CNN. "You're at the radio station having fun."
This is one set of liability suits I think the plaintiffs will be entitled to win.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Crime in the UK versus Crime in the US

There is a discussion going on about gun control and the right to defend yourself over at A Tangled Web. Since my figures on crime in the UK versus crime in the US are couple of years old, I thought I would take a look at the currently available statistics.

The public misconception is that the UK is a safe country and the US violent, but the truth is just the opposite. Depending on which numbers you choose, the violent crime rate in the UK is five times higher than the rate in the US.

[Update - July 2, 2009: People still don't like these statistics, so here is the latest bunch courtesy of the EU and the UN, Naming Britain the most violent country in Europe, with violent crime rates ahead of the US and South Africa.]

[Update - August 20, 2007: Lots of people don't like my conclusions in the post. Fair enough, you don' have to. Here are some other statistics - from the Times Online and the Independent, since you question the other sources here - that you might want to look at. And if you really don't believe the statistics below, point to better statistics.]

British FlagOn the east side of the Atlantic, we have the British Home Office and the British Crime Survey for 2005/2006. The UK does not use a calendar-year reporting scheme, but reports on a September-to-September time-frame. (These figures do NOT represent two years' worth of data.) The first problem is that there appear to be two separate figures for the crime rate. If we look at the tables supporting Chapter 5, on Violent Crime, (this is an Excel Workbook) we are told that there was a total of 2,420,000 violent crimes in the time-frame covered by the report. If we take the word of the CIA Factbook the UK had a population of 60,609,153 (July 2006 est.) This gives a rate of violent crime per 100,000 inhabitants as 3992.8. However in Chapter 7, (Table 7a) of the BCS, the total violent crime rate per 1000 inhabitants is listed as 23, which is equivalent to 2300 per 100,000 inhabitants. Even this lower number is an astonishing figure when compared to the US data.

US FlagOn the west side of the Atlantic we have the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Uniform Crime Report for 2005. (2005 is the last year for which the data are not preliminary.) In table 1, we see that in 2005, the violent crime rate per 100,000 inhabitants was 469.2.

I recently broke out some of the state-by-state numbers. I repeat them here.

StateViolent Crime Rate
per 100,0000
murder rate per
100,000
South Dakota 175.7 2.3
California 526.3 6.9
New York 445.8 4.5
Massachusetts 456.9 2.7
Wisconsin 241.5 3.5
Illinois * 551 6.0
District of Columbia 1459.0 35.4
* Illinois doesn't like to present data to the FBI for inclusion in the Uniform Crime Report. So it is hard to know if the figures for Illinois are low or high. (And yes I know, D.C. is not a state.)

The UK numbers make Washington, D.C. look good.

But then in The Sun Online, in an article: 600 kids mugged each term day we find that the UK numbers do not include crimes against anyone under the age of 16.
Yet the attacks are not included in the Government’s key measure of crime, which IGNORES offences on under-16s. [emphasis in the original]
This ignoring of inconvenient facts is not surprising, given that a 2002 study found that as many as 11 million crimes (some serious) were omitted from the British government's official figures. While some reforms have been enacted, cooking the books seems to still be taking place. (Those 600 muggings per day amount to 113,000 additional crimes every year.)

An interesting comparison of two major metropolitan centers, shows just how far the UK has fallen.
  • New York has a population of 8 million, London 7 million
  • London's crime rate is about 7 times that of New York
  • Police budgets are comparable
  • New York has 40% more cops on the beat

All of this is true while the perception that the UK is a safe society and the US is the violent, wild west remains.

Weasel Watching

As you may or may not already be aware, members of the Watcher's Council hold a vote every week on what they consider to be the most link-worthy pieces of writing around... per the Watcher's instructions, I am submitting one of my own posts for consideration in the upcoming nominations process.

Here is the most recent winning council post, here is the most recent winning non-council post, here is the list of results for the latest vote, and here is the initial posting of all the nominees that were voted on.

A Disturbing Look at Domestic Violence

JusticeDomestic abuse led to 1 in 4 murders here While concentrating on the problem on Staten Island, this article does offer some insight into the phenomenon in the entire country.

Staten Island has a problem with domestic violence. 25% of murders on the island are domestic-violence-related. This compares with 12% for the city of New York, and 15% nationally. Of course this could just mean that Staten Island has fewer homicides related to drugs or gangs or whatever - we can't tell from the statistics quoted in the story.

It could also be that Staten Island has a better reporting mechanism for some reason. Domestic violence is generally conceded to be under-reported for various reasons.

One reason that statistics are hard to come by is that the FBI (and by extension all police departments that feed the FBI statistics) doesn't track domestic violence - with the exception of some homicide data. These crimes are counted as simple or felonious assaults, etc.

Based on studies - even given the questionable nature of the data - it appears that women are 12 times more likely to be murdered by an intimate partner than a man is.

And I have to say something about restraining orders. (You know, those things the Left is always saying we should trust our safety to.)Liberty
Despite the protective intent of restraining orders, the court documents provide no guarantee of safety, and some studies show that women who leave their batterers are at a 75 percent greater risk of being killed by them than are those who stay.
Which is why I will always maintain that if you feel you need an order of protection, you also need a plan for ensuring your own safety. For all their best intentions, the courts and the police are quite limited in what they can do to protect you from violence.

The authors of this article of course never come to the conclusion that we should encourage people to defend themselves. They speak of teaching children, which is fine. But teaching all the children (under 9 say) today won't solve the problem people face today - or over the next 10 or 20 years or more. If someone is bent on doing you harm, you have the right to defend yourself. If someone is determined to harm your children I believe you have a moral obligation to be ready to defend them from harm.

Self-defense is a human right.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Restraining Order Didn't Stop Murder

Woman dies after shooting, murder charge expected - Boston.com There was a "protection-from-abuse order" in place, but it did nothing to protect her.
FAIRFIELD, Maine --A 37-year-old woman died Saturday a day after her estranged husband allegedly shot her in front of their 5- and 6-year-old children.
After killing her, he dropped the kids off at daycare and turned himself in.

He will be charged with murder.

Protection, or restraining, orders are interesting legal documents. They don't restrain, and they don't protect. We will never know if this woman could have defended herself, indeed we don't know whether or not she tried to do so based on this story.

What we do know is that she moved away - into a house she rented from a family member - and got a restraining order. These are the things the Left is always going on about. Things that are supposed to keep us safe, but do they? In case after case after case, restraining orders fail offer any protection. They are interesting legal documents, not bulletproof vests. If you are in a situation that requires a restraining order, you are probably in a situation that requires a defensive plan.

The Boxer Kerfuffle

** Updated ** So Barbara Boxer is an idiot, and will attack anyone who does not agree with her using any means. Is anyone surprised at this? Dr. Rice has endured nothing but insults from the Left since she was nominated to be Secretary of State. This is just more of the same.

But it is funny to see so many on the Right attacking Boxer and defending Rice over this issue.

There is a whole raft of conservatives who want to believe that the 1950s were the Golden Era, and anything that deviates from that "norm" is offensive to God, Nature and the GOP.

In the Blogsphere and other corners of the Internet, there are conservative women who believe I don't have the "perspective" on certain issues because I am not a mother. Small things like should we all give up the right free expression on the Internet because parents are unwilling to control their youngster's access to the web. My views - which differ from theirs - are not as well founded (in their eyes). (For example, if YOU are concerned about what YOUR kids have access to, it is YOUR responsibility to control them. It is not for all of us to sacrifice our rights to make your job easier.) But back to the main point - they attack me and my views because I am a a single, childless women, (they ignore things like extended families), just as Barbara Boxer did with Dr. Rice.

Some of these same people are now laying into Senator Boxer for doing basically the same thing to Dr. Rice. Is that what you call ironic? Or is there a more pejorative label for that kind of behavior?

Since I haven't made my position plain, I think Boxer was being an a-hole. (Again is anyone surprised?) She probably thinks Cindy Sheehan should be making Iraq policy.

I also think those on the Right who give me (and others) grief, and are now "upset" with Boxer because she did exactly the same thing are a-holes too.

Update: Tammy Bruce has a great take on the issue, since she worked with Barbara Boxer in the 1992, it is particularly hard-hitting.

Sign of the Times

Doomsday ClockScientists prepare to move Doomsday Clock forward - Yahoo! News I was actually surprised to see the Doomsday Clock in the news. The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists isn't something most people read (or are even aware of).

Created during the Cold War, it was supposed to represent how close we were to nuclear war, and the end of the world. Given the near-certainty that Iran will get nuclear arms and launch a nuclear war, I think there is a good reason to move the clock.

Currently at seven minutes to midnight - where it was when it was created in 1947 - the hands are to be moved again on Wednesday. They are not saying which direction, but they are talking about nuclear threats and terrorism.

Armed Self-defense Still Works

The Shreveport Times: Intruder shot dead during apparent armed robbery They picked the wrong house to break into.
One man was shot dead and his brother critically wounded late Wednesday after the two reportedly broke into a house in Shreveport's Highland neighborhood.
They met an armed homeowner.

One guy was shot in the head and died at the scene. The other guy was shot 6 times and taken to the hospital. Police have charged the wounded goblin with armed robbery using a firearm. (The firearm clause should make him eligible for federal prosecution.)

The police have not charged the homeowner.
Police have classified the case as a justifiable homicide and will not charge [the homeowner] in the incident.

Some Guys Don't Know When It's Over

Star-Telegram | 01/12/2007 | Home intruder shot dead Not your average home-invader, this was the woman's ex-boyfriend.
FORT WORTH - A 22-year-old man was fatally shot early Wednesday after he forced his way into his ex-girlfriend's house and started kicking in the door of the bedroom where she and her boyfriend were sleeping, police said.

Police said the woman's boyfriend, 29, grabbed a handgun and started firing, hitting Sammien Chopp once in the left chest as he pushed into the room.
She broke up with him around Thanksgiving because of abuse.

After being shot he tried to drive away but didn't get far before he became unconscious. He was taken to a local hospital and died later that morning.

Police have not arrested the shooter because, "It appears to be self-defense." In other words, he did not break the law.

Good Guys 1, Bad Guys 0 [Hat tip KABA]

Friday, January 12, 2007

Good Guys 1, Bad Guys 0

84-year-old homeowner shoots intruder A question for anybody on the left: How the heck is an 84-year-old going to defend himself against a young home invader without a gun? (Sound of crickets...)
Police say 84-year-old Willie Hancox called 911 around two this afternoon to say that he had shot an intruder.

Hancox says he fired two shots, hitting an intruder twice in the head.

"He said if they come in the door, I'm not gonna let them kill me and he meant that," says neighbor, Dorothy Dickerson.

Dickerson lives across the street and looks after Hancox.

Dickerson adds, "I say God is good, cause they had no business in there, and whoever did that got what they deserved.
Hancox's sons took his gun, but he insisted that they give it back and they did. Now they are glad they did.

The injured home invader is listed in critical condition.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

More Nanny State-ism Out of California

Kim father feels tragedy could have been averted The Kim family wants to blame someone - government - for the death of James Kim. They missed their turn on the interstate and instead of turning around, took a back-country road through a national forest. They got caught in snow storm.

This is another example of a city dweller (he was from San Francisco) dead because they don't understand wilderness.

I am sorry that he died, but there are no set of laws that will keep people alive if they want to insist that everything works the way it does on the Embarcadero. It doesn't.

Driving down a country road in the middle of winter is a bad idea unless you understand the risks. There are all kinds of places in this country where you can't rely on cell phones to get you out of trouble. What will you do if you find yourself in such a place?

In the Midwest, where I spent too many years, the risks can revolve around both snow and sub-zero temperatures, not to mention black ice. In the West, snow and cold. If you don't know what "black ice" is, I suggest you stay off country roads in the winter time anywhere there are freezing temps. Anybody want to guess how long it takes to freeze exposed skin when the temperature approaches minus 20 degrees Fahrenheit?

There was little food, so he set out on foot. This article doesn't say what he was wearing, but my guess is that he was not dressed for a hike in the snow.

So of course the folks in San Fran want to know how the government allowed this to happen. All because they didn't want to take the 30 minutes to go back and take their correct route.

Good Guys 2, Bad Guys 0

KnoxNews: Would-be robber shot by homeowner One goblin is in jail, the other in the hospital.
Paul Lee Bourff and Robert Wayne Evans burst inside armed and were holding Sonya Dople at gunpoint when her boyfriend, Charles Green, shot Bourff in the chest, police said.

Authorities took Evans to jail and Bourff to the hospital. Both will face robbery and aggravated assault charges, police said.
Self-defense (or defense of your loved-ones) is a human right.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Ohio Gets Pro-Gun Gov - a Democrat

Strickland is sworn as Ohio's governor Note to Repubs: There are pro-gun Dems, and gun-owners will vote for them.

The outgoing crook gov. - Taft - hated guns and gun owners. He blocked pro-gun legislation as often as he could. I didn't think they would get concealed carry in OH while he was there, and they only did it with the first veto-override in about 25 years.

No Surprise that Prosecutors Hate “Stand Your Ground”

JusticeSOME OPPOSE CHANGE IN DEADLY FORCE LAWS Arkansas is considering "Stand Your Ground" legislation, removing the "duty to retreat" if you are attacked. The "some" who oppose this change are exactly the prosecuting district attorneys who want to be able to continue to put people in jail for defending themselves.
Taylor said that under current state law “it’s the prosecutor’s call” and he understands that there are times when a person should retreat, however he believes the current law “sort of favors the bad guy.”
If you defend yourself outside the home in Arkansas you face the fact that a DA, who was not there, will decide if the decision you made at possibly the most stressful time in your life, was EXACTLY right. Either that or he will just consider how likely a conviction would be, and will that conviction make him look "tough on crime" in the next election.

Monday, January 08, 2007

What Happens When the Criminals Are Armed, and the Cops Aren't?

The Sun Online - News: Ops and Robbers: Hospital raid Answer, jail breaks.
A BANK robber jailed for life escaped at a hospital yesterday when he was sprung by three armed villains.

Joe Farnan, 28, was freed from an ambulance just seconds after it pulled up outside accident and emergency.
There was prison staff.... unarmed prison staff of course.

Good Guys 1, Bad Guys 0

Blog: Breaking News | Tampabay.com - St. Petersburg Times: Intruder, 16, shot by homeowner A pair of burglars - teenagers - break into a home at 9:30 on Sunday evening. They open fire inside the home. They hit no one.

A resident retrieves a gun and returns fire, striking one of them in the abdomen.

One goblin is in hospital, the other is being sought by police. No good-guys were injured.

Since the goblin in the hospital is 16 years old, the Brady Bunch will count this as a "Child shot." The fact that the child in question was engaged in armed robbery, and was shot in what appears to be legal self-defense is not a fact that appeals to the Brady Bunch; they will ignore it.

Another Restraining Order Does Nothing

Man charged with burning woman A restraining order was in place. She ended up in the hospital anyway. (3rd degree burns)

He set her on fire and burned down the house.

This being the People's Republic of Massachusetts, I have no idea what would have been involved for her to have a gun for self-defense. And then there is no guarantee that a plan for self-defense would mean your plans work in all cases. But planning to rely on your restraining orders and planning to rely on the police for security is not to be considered viable. Restraining Orders do nothing to restrain individuals bent on mayhem, and police are many minutes away.

Gays in the Israeli Defense Force

Worldandnation: Israeli experience may sway Army policy on gays In 1993 - the year the US created "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" - Israel dropped all restrictions against gays serving in the military.
All restrictions on gay and lesbian soldiers were dropped. Homosexuals in the Israel Defense Forces could join close-knit combat units or serve in sensitive intelligence posts. They were eligible for promotion to the highest ranks.
14 years later, Israel is convinced that they made the right choice.

The nay-sayers are convinced that the US is different, and the fact that it works in 24 countries including Israel should not matter. They say serving soldiers would object.
However, a recent poll of U.S. soldiers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan found that 75 percent said they would feel comfortable serving with gays. Of those who knew they had a gay colleague, two-thirds said it had no impact on their unit or personal morale.

Americans in general are far more amenable to gays in the military since "don't ask, don't tell" was adopted in 1993. Polls in the last few years have shown at least 58 percent and as much as 70 percent favor repealing the ban on known homosexuals.
In time, this will change in America as well.

January 8, 1958

January 8, 1958 14-year-old Bobby Fischer became the youngest US Chess Champion ever.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

An Electric Vehicle that includes a generator

Chevrolet VoltI hosted a bit of a discussion the other day on electric vehicles. That focused on the Tesla Roadster. Today we hear from GM and its plans to get back into the electric vehicle game.

GM to unveil Volt electric concept car - Detroit Auto Show 2007 - MSNBC.com This is NOT a hybrid. The 1 liter internal combustion engine has no connection to the drive train. It runs a generator that charges the batteries.

Given the current technology, this lets the Volt get about 50 miles per gallon, and has a range of about 600 miles on its 12 gallon tank.

If you are just driving around town - to and from work say - you can charge it overnight. You get 40 miles per charge with the Volt.

As designed, it will accelerate from 0 to 60 in about 8.5 seconds. Battery technology is still an issue, and given what Tesla has done, I don't see why the acceleration curve is so low. Still, it is a step in the right direction.

Don't expect to see it much before 2010. [Hat tip to Varifrank]

The Greatest Game Ever Played

A great surprise movie. I don't even like golf, though I did play a little as a kid, but they do make it interesting.

See it.

This is the original underdog, sports hero story. The amazing thing is that it is basically a true story. (Except for the "love interest.") All of the stuff you think is made up is stone cold true. From the set-up with the father, to the exceptional shots made in the tournaments are all true.

Update: I should say, it isn't mostly about golf. It is about competition in general, and the relationships of the people involved. Though there is some about the golf itself, they seem to make it at least as much about performing under the pressure of a championship competition.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Justice System Offers Very Little Justice

Crime leads law student through victim's view of the system If you think Justice will be delivered by the "Justice System," think again.

No time served by the goblin for what should have been felony assault. 2 to 20 years is what the books say the punishment should be. Cops that seemed uninterested in orders of protection, or vandalism. A system that did not enforce the limited counseling sessions it demanded.

These things were what faced Lindsey Byers, a law student, faced after her boyfriend hit her so hard he loosened teeth and broke her nose such that two operations were required to correct it.

Delaying tactics, or realities of system?
But hearings in Byers' case, overseen by recently retired District Court Judge Jon Wisser, were reset or delayed 11 times. On two occasions, Byers said, a hearing was postponed while her parents, who'd driven from Dallas to attend, were waiting in the courtroom for it to begin. When she called the district attorney's office to complain, "they just told me it was part of the process," she said.

Hunt said the case dragged because he had several scheduling conflicts, and it was difficult for Walker to travel to Austin from his Arkansas home.

"He couldn't just pick up and leave at a moment's notice," he said.

At times, though, Walker simply seemed unwilling to do what the court asked. In one court filing, for example, a prosecutor noted that he hadn't completed a family violence and drug evaluation as required, even when county officials here found a program for him in Arkansas.
Counseling - which he has since attended - is not punishment. I suppose the Left would say punishment is so old fashioned, but I say it is part and parcel of justice. If you attack me, there should be a price.

He didn't serve a day in jail, and is being asked to pay about $5000 restitution - her out-of-pocket medical bills.

She doesn't think she is getting justice, and neither do I. Even though she was determined to see her assailant punished, he got off with the next best thing to a slap on the wrist, 5 years probation.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Former General Backs End to "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"

BREITBART.COM - Former General Backs Gay Policy Change
The Army general who was Joint Chiefs chairman when the Pentagon adopted its "don't ask, don't tell" policy on gays says he no longer opposes allowing them to serve openly.

John Shalikashvili, who retired in 1997 after four years as the nation's top military officer, had argued that allowing homosexuals to serve openly would hurt troop morale and recruitment and undermine the cohesion of combat units.
Unit cohesion is the same smoke screen used to justify the segregation of the armed forces on the basis of race. It is an argument that admits no refute without having to provide any evidence one way or another.

Common Sense on Gun Crime

SouthCoastToday.com - Opinion - CONSERVATIVE CORNER: Some perspective on call for gun control - January 04, 2007 A rational view of creating gun laws that work to reduce crime (and avoiding laws that have no impact on crime). Worth a look. [via NRA-ILA]

Concealed Carry Laws and Impacts on Law Enforcement

police.pdf (application/pdf Object) The debate about concealed carry will continue, and not just in Illinois and Wisconsin. Here at least is scholarly article that addresses one of the straw men the Left is always going on about. Do concealed carry laws put law enforcement officers at risk?
Although some people oppose shall-issue laws because they believe the laws endanger the officers’ lives, there is no evidence for that belief. After controlling for an array of
factors, including trends before and after the law went into effect, I show that states that enact concealed carry laws are less likely to have a felonious police death and more likely to have lower rates of felonious police deaths after the law is passed. This result is statistically significant in seven of the nine specifications, and the difference between the before and after trends is significant in over half the specifications. Although point estimates show that the same qualitative results are true for felonious police deaths due to handguns, the results are statistically significant in only about one-quarter of the specifications. Also, the before and after trends in the shall-issue variable are statistically different in about half of the specifications. Furthermore, those who believe allowing private citizens to carry concealed weapons will endanger the lives of law enforcement officials do not even have anecdotal evidence to support their position. To date, we have no examples of lawabiding citizens with concealed weapons permits assaulting police officers. In contrast, there is at least one example of such a citizen coming to the aid of an officer.
Concealed carry laws don't put officers at risk because only very law-abiding citizens get permits to carry. The criminals are not eligible for permits, but ignore the law and carry weapons anyway.

It is always nice to be able to treat the hysteria with a cold dose of reality.[Hat tip to Pro-Gun Progressive]

Restraining Order Does NOT Stop Kidnapping

Catawba County Man Accused Of Kidnapping Wife At Gunpoint - Charlotte News A restraining order was in place. It did nothing.

He kidnapped her at gunpoint and took her into the woods behind her home. Police were informed that he intended to do her harm.

It took several hours for the police to find them in the woods.

She is OK. She could easily be dead or raped.

Relying on restraining orders for your safety is absurd. They are interesting legal documents, not bullet-proof vests. If someone in your life is dangerous enough to require that you get an order of protection, you should also get yourself some real protection, and the training to use it.

Self-defense is a human right.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Law Enforcement Behaving Badly

Missouri: Police Roadblock Harassment Caught on Tape Stopped because he didn't want to have a conversation with police. They are authorized to run DWI checkpoints. Are they authorized to say you no longer can remain silent? You don't have to say anything.

On the basis of this they held the kid up 15 minutes, and probably damaged the clutch on his car. Video is here. [via KABA]

Armed Self-defense Works Again

1 fatally shot, 1 wounded in home invasion; 2 arrested | www.tucsoncitizen.com Six people invaded a home Tuesday. One resident locked himself in a bedroom and loaded a shotgun

A statement from police describes what happened.
One of the armed intruders kicked open the locked bedroom door and the resident fired a blast from the shotgun, critically wounding the intruder.

When another intruder appeared in the open bedroom doorway, the resident fired again, this time fatally.
The other intruders then picked up the wounded man and fled.

A woman, two other men and a 9-year-old were in the home when the gunmen burst in about 10:40 p.m.
Six people intent on criminal action. How would these people have been defended if not via a firearm?

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

They Should Ban Guns From Schools

Gunman kills male student at Washington high school - Yahoo! News Oh, wait... I guess the ban isn't working. Maybe they should try a different strategy.

Another UN Mission, Another Crisis of Child Abuse

Telegraph | News | UN staff accused of raping children in Sudan Is anyone surprised at this?
The first indications of sexual exploitation emerged within months of the UN force's arrival and The Daily Telegraph has seen a draft of an internal report compiled by the UN children's agency Unicef in July 2005 detailing the problem.
The UN is not "officially" acknowledging there is a problem. They think it might hurt efforts to launch another "peacekeeping" mission in the north-west region of Sudan, Darfur.

But then how could the Useless Nitwits at the United Nations know if any of this is going on?
those accused have not been tracked down nor has there been any attempt by the UN or local officials to interview those making the accusations.
Actually investigating might lead to information they really don't want to know. So they put their heads in the ground and pretend all is well.

Can we please stop giving these monsters money, and can we really stop sending them to yet more places where they can abuse the helpless? It isn't like this is the first time and place these allegations have been made (or substantiated).

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Why are we using the Truth Laid Bear for any purpose?

In April of Last year I opened a support ticket with the TTLB web site. I am listed as the community admin for the Cotillion, and if any of you were paying attention, I wish to be rid of any and all association with that group. It is not to be.

I have updated the ticket, sent repeated emails to bear at truthlaidbear dot com - his official contact email and in general screamed for someone to do something about this.

All to no avail. And we use this system to track something of importance? I hope not, since no one seems to be minding the store.

Next Time There is a Disaster, Let's Just Stay Home

Tsunami survivors given the lash - Sunday Times - Times Online
Disaster donations help Islamic vigilante force impose punishments on women
I'm sure most of the people who donated to the disaster funds for the tsunami victims didn't expect there funds to be used this way.
WHEN people around the world sent millions of pounds to help the stricken Indonesian province of Aceh after the Boxing Day tsunami of 2004, few could have imagined that their money would end up subsidising the lashing of women in public.

But militant Islamists have since imposed sharia law in Aceh and have cornered Indonesian government funds to organise a moral vigilante force that harasses women and stages frequent displays of humiliation and state-sanctioned violence.
Let's stop subsidizing brutality.

Should we turn our collective back on folks like those who suffered from the Tsunami? Yes. As long as the money is going to monsters, my answer is yes.

New Years Best of Me Symphony

Dodgeblogium : New Years Boms As always, a collection of posts more than 60 days old.

How Much Would You Bet That This Man Was Disarmed As a Condition of Employment?

Cable TV Employee Robbed:
An 18 and 15-year-old have been arrested and charged for robbing a cable TV employee outside a Tri-state home Tuesday afternoon.
Ohio has a concealed carry law, but I think it is better than even money that the cable company this guy works for has a "no guns" policy.

I wonder if he can sue? Probably not in this case, since he wasn't harmed.

When are companies going to wake up to the fact that disarming their employees does not make them (the companies) safer from lawsuits?

Chicago Police Are Confused

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES :: Metro & Tri-State :: Shooting of 6 at party may be hate crime A group of gunmen invade a home, known locally as the "Gay House" and shoot 6 people.
Six people were shot -- two hospitalized with serious injuries -- when the gunmen opened fire on about 100 partygoers about 5:30 a.m. [Sunday, 12/30/06] at the house is in the 7900 block of South Woodlawn Avenue.

"They just bust[ed] through the door, and everything went haywire," said a partygoer, who would not give his name. "I hope to God they catch whoever did this."
Police are NOT calling it a hate crime, because the gunmen didn't say anything while they were shooting. Right, the fact that they shot up a bunch of gay folks is not enough of a clue for Chicago's finest.

The reaction of "the man in the street" would be comical except for the fact that it is laced with hate.
"We always be seeing them, and they always be looking at people," said Kevin Carter, 18. "They give you that gay look, like you're a female or something. That ain't cute. People be ready to fight . . . I knew something was going to happen to that house."
But there is no hate in this situation.... at least Chicago's finest can't find any.

Chicago police will never find who did this, because the people in that neighborhood - if the "man in the street" is to be believed - hate gays. As to the attitude of the cops.... no indication here of what it might be. But if you think that every cop in Chicago - or any city - would vigorously pursue justice in case like this, I can tell you that is not the case. Some cops hate gays, just as some cops hate blacks. These guys are both gay and black.

Those gay men - all of the shooting victims were men - should arm themselves for self-defense. Oh, but of course Richie Daley says no one needs guns in the city of Chicago. And since guns are outlawed - long guns I guess are still OK, as long as they are not "evil, black guns" - but I have no idea what hoops one would have to jump through to get one.

Weasels

As you may or may not already be aware, members of the Watcher's Council hold a vote every week on what they consider to be the most link-worthy pieces of writing around... per the Watcher's instructions, I am submitting one of my own posts for consideration in the upcoming nominations process.

Here is the most recent winning council post, here is the most recent winning non-council post, here is the list of results for the latest vote, and here is the initial posting of all the nominees that were voted on.

Monday, January 01, 2007

A Toast

J. Daniels Makers Mark
(the J.D. image was stolen shamelessly from Beth)