Steep gun tax concept endorsed by Hillary Clinton in 1993 beginning to take hold
WASHINGTON, D.C. – A $1,000 per gun tax should serve as a “role model” for states, according to the governor of the U.S. territory of the Northern Mariana Islands, which imposed the $1,000 gun tax earlier this month. An idea first endorsed by Hillary Clinton in 1993, steep gun taxes have now taken hold in Cook County, Ill. the city of Seattle, and now a U.S. territory.
As reported by the Saipan Tribune:
The administration of Gov. Ralph DLG Torres defended the CNMI’s new gun control laws on Friday as a law that could be “a role model” for other U.S. states and jurisdictions facing seemingly uncontrolled and continued gun violence.
The administration was responding to queries regarding its position on recent reports that the a legal challenge to the new law, Public law 19-42, was likely, particularly over a provision that assesses a $1,000 excise tax on pistols.
The $1,000 gun tax “role model” threat is not idle. Consider the following:
Seattle Gun Tax: On Jan. 1, 2016, Seattle’s $25 per gun tax took effect, as did a two cent to five cent tax per round of ammunition.
Cook County, Ill. Gun and Ammunition Tax: On June 1, 2016, Cook County’s new ammunition tax takes effect, at a rate of one cent to five cents per round of ammunition. The ammo tax comes on top of the existing gun tax regime of $25 per gun.
Hillary Clinton’s 25% Gun Tax Endorsement: In passionate testimony to the Senate Finance Committee in 1993, Hillary Clinton gave her strong personal endorsement to a new national 25% sales tax on guns and endorsed a steep increase in the gun dealer fee, to $2,500.
“The Left is now seeking to tax guns out of existence,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “The Second Amendment makes it difficult to legally ban guns, but Hillary has led the way to explaining you can achieve the same thing with high taxes.”
In newly released footage from Americans for Tax Reform, Clinton is shown nodding enthusiastically as she endorsed the 25% gun tax and as legal gun dealers were described as “purveyors of violence.”
Legendary news publication “The Economist” has seen fit to not only acknowledge the innovations of Blockchain’s technology but produce a feature story on it for the current October 31 weekly edition. The cover story’s title is called, “The trust machine – How the technology behind bitcoin could change the world.” Here we go over some excerpts and the basic tenor of the piece.
The Economist is one of the Western world’s oldest and most trusted publications
As you may already be aware, Bitcoin does not have a sterling reputation within the mainstream media, if that fact has alluded you to this point, The Economist makes sure you get that realization stated up front as fact within the story’s first sentence, which succinctly reads “Bitcoin has a bad reputation.” The online edition fails to reveal a name of an author for this story.
This first sentence sets up the article with a short summary of why the generally negative reputation has been established, so far. By the middle of the second paragraph, it does not refute any issues with the public image Bitcoin. They seem to have little interest in disputing its validity, but they rush to the defense of the technological flavor-of-the-month, Bitcoin’s revolutionary Blockchain technology, whose impressive skip set is attracting venture capitalists and banking magnates like moths to a flame.
An original point of view was the use of Napster as the progenitor, the guiding light, for all future peer-to-peer networks, be it Napster, Spotify or Bitcoin. The article covers the broad strokes of what a blockchain is and how it may help businesses become more efficient in a multitude of business fields, from banking to real estate registry in Honduras. A swing at Bitcoin, while catapulting “The Blockchain” is pretty much a prerequisite in such an editorial piece.
“Bitcoin itself may never be more than a curiosity. However, blockchains have a host of other uses because they meet the need for a trustworthy record, something vital for transactions of every sort. Dozens of startups now hope to capitalize on the blockchain technology, either by doing clever things with the bitcoin blockchain or by creating new blockchains of their own.”
It has some other facets of the interaction between the mainstream and the blockchain that I won’t spoil. The representation of how a major pillar of the mainstream media with 1,400,000 weekly readers covers a revolutionary technology like Bitcoin and its blockchain is worth a read. The piece is generally quite positive, if fairly predictable, but the idea of promoting the blockchain over Bitcoin reminds me of something my favorite Bitcoin guru Andreas Antonopoulos said. He said the following at a recent Wired Money Bitcoin education seminar in July that is quite salient, to put this in perspective.
“The Blockchain, in itself, is boring technology. It’s a slow ledger. Don’t make the mistake of ignoring the disruptive potential of Bitcoin, and so you can get some watered-down, CompuServe-like, smooth jazz, soft version of it that feels nice and comfortable at the executive Board Room. There are two places you can be. You can be Blockbuster or your can be Netflix. That’s why Bitcoin is the important thing, not The Blockchain.”
Reading The Economist piece is a good idea, as is watching the video of Andreas’ dissertation at Wired Money. Take in the arguments from both sides of the aisle, and make a decision on where your digital future is headed. Will you be much more educated listening to Andreas for twenty minutes over reading the referenced article for 7 minutes through the link above? Absolutely, but inquiring minds might want to know what the mainstream’s latest spin looks like in print, however short-sighted it may be.
WASHINGTON — Renewed calls for more restrictive gun laws, following a succession of fatal shootings in the United States, immediately appear to be generating a boost for the gun industry.
Newly released August records show that the FBI posted 1.7 million background checks required of gun purchasers at federally licensed dealers, the highest number recorded in any August since gun checks began in 1998. The numbers follow new monthly highs for June (1.5 million) and July (1.6 million), a period which spans a series of deadly gun attacks — from Charleston to Roanoke — and proposals for additional firearm legislation.
While the FBI does not track actual gun sales, as multiple firearms can be included in a transaction by a single buyer, the National Instant Criminal Background Check System’s numbers are an indicator of a market upswing in the face of growing anxiety about access to guns.
“Whenever there is a call for gun control, sales increase,” said Larry Keane, general counsel for the firearm industry trade association National Shooting Sports Foundation. “Unfortunately, this is a pattern that repeats itself.”
The summer trend is not on par with the panic buying boom that followed the 2012 Newtown massacre, which jump-started state and federal campaigns for a host of new firearm measures. During the months that followed the Connecticut attack, which featured new calls for an assault weapons ban and expanded background checks, apprehensive gun buyers emptied the shelves of dealers across the country. Yet, the recent uptick represents a similar buying pattern that dates to the uneasy period before 1994 adoption of the assault weapons ban. (That ban expired in 2004.)
Virginia Del. Patrick Hope, a Democratic member of the state Assembly who proposed an expansion of background checks following last month’s shooting deaths of two journalists near Roanoke, said the stockpiling of weapons represented an “over-reaction.”
“We’re not at all threatening any one’s ability to get a gun,” Hope said. “What we’re talking about here is common sense legislation. I don’t think any one is threatened by background checks.”
In the recent Virginia shootings, an attack carried out on live television, gunman Vester Flanagan passed a background check prior to last month’s purchase of two Glock handguns, including the weapon used in the Aug. 26 assault in which reporter Alison Parker, 24, and Adam Ward, 27, were killed. A third person, a local chamber of commerce official, was wounded. Flanagan later used one of the weapons to kill himself.
Hope said his expanded background check proposal, supported by a petition containing 28,000 signatures, is aimed at the unchecked market of private firearm transactions, mostly over the Internet and at gun shows, that account for about 40% of firearm sales.
“I chose background checks, not because it would have prevented (the Virginia shooting) but because this would be easiest to pass,” Hope said. “We will not be able to prevent every single incident. We need to do something.”
But Keane said the legislative proposals commonly offered in the emotional wake of fatal shootings often do not account for specific circumstances leading up to the attacks.
“These things are being offered up before the person is even arrested or before (investigators) even know what happened,” Keane said. “For people concerned about their Second Amendment rights, the concern never goes away.”
Keane said the gun purchases prompted by calls for new restrictions are “certainly legitimate to the person exercising their fundamental civil liberties protected by the Second Amendment.”
“The concern that anti-gun politicians are seeking to infringe and restrict the right to keep and bear arms is very real and well-founded,” he said.
Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, said there is risk during periods of increased sales when all purchases are not covered by background checks.
“When gun sales rise, more and more weapons find a set of dangerous hands to call home,” Gross said. “There are people in this country, people like felons, fugitives, and domestic abusers who we all agree simply should not have guns.”
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Three North Carolina men fearing a government takeover and martial law stockpiled weapons, ammunition and tactical gear while attempting to rig home-made explosives, according to charges announced by the Justice Department on Monday.
The men from Gaston County, near Charlotte, were arrested by federal authorities on Saturday after more than a month’s investigation.
Walter Eugene Litteral, 50, Christopher James Barker, 41, and Christopher Todd Campbell, 30, are accused of stockpiling guns and ammunition, as well as attempting to manufacture pipe bombs and live grenades from military surplus “dummy” grenades, according unsealed criminal complaints released Monday.
The close to 60 pages of information compiled by federal authorities since July include allegations Litteral planned to makes explosives out of tennis balls covered in nails and coffee cans filled with ball bearings.
According to the documents, both Litteral and Campbell spoke openly about their opposition to Jade Helm 15, a series of ongoing special forces training missions in several Southwestern states that has drawn suspicion from residents who fear it is part of a planned military takeover.
In addition to ammunition for a long-range .338 caliber rifle, the authorities said Litteral purchased hand-held radios, Kevlar helmets, body armor and face masks in preparation for an armed resistance to the feared military occupation.
Litteral was also planning to purchase an assault rifle along with ammunition for Barker, whose past convictions for possession of stolen goods and cocaine barred him from possessing a gun, according to the documents.
The FBI began its investigation in mid-June after receiving a tip about Litteral and Barker attempting to make homemade explosives, and later began investigating Campbell based on similar information that he was attempting to reconstruct grenades.
Litteral was quoted in the documents calling his planned homemade explosives “game changers,” and authorities allege he planned to test the devices with Barker in Shelby, North Carolina.
The federal conspiracy charges carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. In addition, Campbell has been charged with a separate firearms charge punishable by 10 years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine.
In addition to the FBI, agencies assisting in the investigation include the North Carolina Highway Patrol, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Federal Air Marshal Service as well as local police in Charlotte, Belmont, Mount Holly and Gastonia.
The men will remain in federal custody pending the outcome of detention hearings scheduled for Thursday. It was not immediately clear if they had attorneys.
Retired general and former Democratic presidential candidate Wesley Clark on Friday called for World War II-style internment camps to be revived for “disloyal Americans.” In an interview with MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts in the wake of the mass shooting in Chatanooga, Tennessee, Clark said that during World War II, “if someone supported Nazi Germany at the expense of the United States, we didn’t say that was freedom of speech, we put him in a camp, they were prisoners of war.”
He called for a revival of internment camps to help combat Muslim extremism, saying, “If these people are radicalized and they don’t support the United States and they are disloyal to the United States as a matter of principle, fine. It’s their right and it’s our right and obligation to segregate them from the normal community for the duration of the conflict.”
There are sociopaths who have decided to feed off of others’ productive efforts. They feel that they do not need to prepare for future disasters because, with their guns, they will just take what they need to survive. This article discusses how to quickly recognize and avoid such dangerous people who may have a strong potential for violence and crime. This article will give some specific clues to consider, but one of the best ways to recognize dangerous, crime prone people and the violence they bring is by being aware of your own gut feelings.
No matter how exciting or entertaining some people seem to be, think twice about staying involved with them if they:
1. Are alcohol or drug abusers who easily can lose control of themselves, especially when they are under the influence of their drugs or when they are in desperate need of their drugs.
2. Show little or no evidence of empathy.
3. Seem to be incapable of feeling guilt.
4. Seem to be hostile and impulsive.
5. Appear to have a strong preference for action instead of thought.
6. Exhibit rapid and extreme mood swings.
7. Tend to project blame from themselves unto others.
8. Seem to live mainly for the present and have little appreciation for the future consequences of their actions.
9. Exhibit a sense of entitlement.
10. Show resentment toward authority figures and do not conform to normal social customs and laws.
11. Have friends who are similar to them.
12. Casually mention past altercations, arrests, or incarcerations.
13. Believe more in fate than in their ability to determine their futures and to avoid crime.
14. Have facial scars that possibly came from their past, violent encounters.
As an early warning system, these clues are imperfect. There are some types of dangerous people who may exhibit some of these clues, but not all or even most of these clues. There are even normal people who may display some of these clues, but who never will resort to violence and crime. Nevertheless, the more of these clues that you detect, the more you should be on your guard and the more you should avoid extended association with such a potentially violent, crime prone person. It is probably better to be too suspicious than to be too naïve and trusting as this young woman discovered.
Matthew 26:15 reads, “All who draw the sword will die by the sword. Sociopaths will get what they deserve. Being associated with a sociopath in any way also can put innocent people at risk.
Kudos to developer Larry Hall for finding an inventive way to sell $3M luxury condos he built in a stretch of desert near Concordia, Kansas. His trick? Siting them in decommissioned missile silos strong enough to survive a nuclear attack.
As the Wall Street Journalreports, Hall has not only done enough prep work for doomsday-minded Americans with money to burn—outfitting the facility with a hydroponic vegetable garden, “sophisticated water and air-treatment facilities, state-of-the-art computer network technology and several alternate power generation capabilities”—but he knows his clients will want to keep up a certain standard of living should the world become a blasted radioactive hellscape. Which is why the underground luxury condo has a 17-seat movie theater, a swimming pool, a dog park, and a gym. It even has its own little jail!
Cabin fever getting to you? Each of the units comes with “windows,” i.e., video screens that can show a few outdoor scenes reminiscent of a Windows background image, so occupants can lose themselves in pastoral scenes while the world outside burns.
Hall completed construction on his first luxury bunker in 2012. All seven of the 1,820-square-foot floors have been sold—the Journal has a nifty diagram of a cross-section of the facility—four of them to the executive of a tobacco-product firm, who paid $12M in cash. A Florida nightclub owner who bought a full-floor unit in a second compound that’s currently under construction maintains that he is not at all the “tinfoil hat-wearing” type. Tinfoil being the poor man’s response to irrational fears.
Hall is currently considering silos in Texas and elsewhere for additional developments. So business is booming! Here’s a look inside one of the completed complexes, which owners are free to live in full-time while they wait for the worst.
Every so often there is a natural disaster, terrorist incident, or major crisis that throws parts of the country into temporary chaos. Many times everything people own is wiped out as was the case with Hurricane Katrina, Super-storm Sandy, and the Joplin tornado. When these things happen, you see society at its worst with looting, violence, and mass chaos. Given Americans’ history of rioting over small things like Black Friday sales and sporting events, it makes sense that this would happen in the event of a major disaster. Those that prepare for these events are being prudent and should be commended.
To the governments of the world, it is about control. The establishment does not like any movement that is outside of their control. For example, in Venezuela, the government has called on prosecutors to target people who are “hoarding” basic staples in the event of a natural disaster or economic crisis. In the U.S. an executive order gives the federal government the authority to seize, confiscate, or re-delegate resources from companies or individuals as deemed necessary in the event of a national security emergency or disaster. In Los Angeles County, codes officials raided the homes of hundreds of people who were growing and storing their own food and producing solar power. The county officials informed them that they could keep their land but they would have to clear everything off of it and would not be allowed to live there.
The man alleged to have shot two Pennsylvania police officers on Sept. 12 stalked them on a cool night under a gibbous moon. He hid in woods at the edge of game lands in rural Blooming Grove, Pa. And, at around 10:50 p.m., he fired, killing one man and seriously wounding another.
Eric Matthew Frein, 31, of Canadensis, Pa., has been charged with this inexplicable crime. But state police said he has a philosophy: survivalism.
What is it?
In short: a stark worldview that fuses, in varying degrees, millennialism, Second Amendment and hard-money advocacy, environmentalism and racism. It’s an ideology with many godparents, including Henry David Thoreau, Ludwig von Mises and Charlton Heston. And its proponents think the world as we know it will end soon — and we must be prepared.
Hence their nickname: “preppers.”
“We’re living in a time of instability,” one told Emily Matchar, who wrote for Outside magazine. “It doesn’t take long for people to turn into animals.” (For the record: Matchar wrote preppers “don’t like being called survivalists — that word has dark, kooky connotations.”)
Another definition of survivalist from survivalist.info: “One who has personal or group survival as a primary goal in the face of difficulty, opposition, and especially the threat of natural catastrophe, nuclear war, or societal collapse.”
Something is coming, whatever it is.
“The biggest problem we suffer here in North America is complacency,” a prepper told CBN in 2012. He added: “People figure since nothing has happened in ‘x’ amount of years, nothing bad will ever happen. So they get comfortable, and they get lazy and then unpreparedness comes in. Then you have other people who look at history.”
The Bank of England has devoted two papers to the rise of digital currencies. It’s another demonstration of Bitcoin’s transformation from niche cyber-libertarian intrigue to a subject of mainstream interest.
More significantly, the Bank suggests that the key innovation is not the digital currency itself — which is subject to wild fluctuations — but the “distributed ledger,” which tracks Bitcoin transactions. That ledger has the potential to revolutionize the financial system, the bank argues.
Although there has been a great deal of innovation and new technology in payment systems, the Bank says ” the basic structure of centralised payment systems has remained unchanged.” At the core of the system is a central ledger (usually a central bank) that records and settles transactions.
Bitcoin, and other digital currencies, works on a completely different decentralized model. Instead of a central ledger digital (crypto)currencies operate with a publicly visible ledger, with copies shared between all participants. The advantage of this system is that it avoids the problem of people spending the same money multiple times without having to have centralized monitoring of the process. Or as the Bank puts it:
Since anybody can check any proposed transaction against the ledger, this approach removes the need for a central authority and thus for participants to have confidence in the integrity of any single entity .
This removes two key risks of a centralized system — credit risk and liquidity risk. Credit risk arises where one of the banks in a system goes bust, leaving unpaid debts to other institutions in the system. Liquidity risk comes about when a firm is fundamentally sound (it has the necessary assets to pay off its debts) but at a particular time it is unable to convert those assets to cash in order to meet its debt payments.