Sunday, May 31, 2009

Steyr handgun in the movies -- again: Bladerunner Redux

Click the image to open in full size.
If you're a sci-fi fan, you'll know it's the 2019 Detective Special from the cult classic Bladerunner, starring a very young Harrison Ford, who grew up to be Indiana Jones. Or did he grow backward from 2019? But I digress.

The above strange-looking movie prop is indeed a Steyr firearm, sorta.

The Firearm Blog reports:
The “2019 Detective Special” prop gun from the movie Blade Runner has been auctioned off for $270,000!

At first glance the gun looks to be some sort of auto-revolver. It is in fact a Steyr Mannlicher .222 Model SL rifle action and trigger group with some revolver parts tacked on. Note the double set trigger and Steyr’s iconic “butter knife” style bolt handle. It even retains the Steyr serial number.

Phil Steinschneider has a website detailing how be built a replica of the prop using a Steyr Mannlicher .222 Model SL action and a Charter Arms .44 Special Police Bulldog revolver.
Click the image to open in full size.
Phil’s replica
As has been chronicled at numerous times, (I'm too lazy to run a search for the threads) Steyr pistols have been in movies before, probably many times. Certainly the M and MA1 and I would imagine the GB also. If you're not a Steyr nut like me, they're great pistols made by that other Austrian arms manufacturer that hardly anybody in the U.S. knows about. Hint, it ain't Glock, it's Steyr-Mannlicher of Steyr, Austria.

Hollywood may be full of baloney on practically everything, but prop guys do know a cool gun when they see one. And Steyr guns were cool before cool was invented. How cool would Indiana Jones look with one of these in hand?
Click the image to open in full size.
Model 1905 Steyr-Mannlicher semi-auto Pistol, cal. 7.63mm Mannlicher

And in case you don't know, and most Americans don't, the man whose name is the second half of the modern arms company, Ferdinand Mannlicher, is the one who designed that famous bolt-action design used in the Bladerunner pistol as well as the above real pistol, the Model 1905.

He was designing semi-automatic and fully automatic pistols and rifles before the famed American arms inventor John M. Browning, father of the 1911 .45 pistol, got out of knee pants.

If you'd like a quick education in early modern firearms history, read Ferdinand Mannlicher: Austria's John M. Browning

Saturday, May 30, 2009

CZ P-07 begins beautiful relationship; EAA Witness-P .45 stumbles

One outa two is superlative if you're at the plate in baseball swinging a bat. It's the only sport where you can fail three times out of 10 and be a sure shot for the Hall of Fame, assuming you can play average defense and not make your teammates lose the game.

But as King James would say, one of two kinda sucketh with pistol purchases. First the good news.

My new CZ P-07 9mm is a great little pistol (at right in top photo), a 3.7"-barrel polymer-frame compact with 16 rounds in the mag and best of all, it's a great shooter. I put 100+ rounds through her today without a bobble, flub or error of any type. Her sights are pretty much right on the money at 50 feet, where I was shooting from at the range today. She's batting 1000 so far.

I also tested a couple of new magazines for my Sig P229 SAS Gen2 .357 Sig (at left in the top photo), which of course were flawless. They're factory mags, but as Reagan said, trust but verify. Sixteen of the holes in and around the head of the full-size Blueman target (second photo) are from the CZ P-07 and the other 12 are from the Sig P229. The big majority of the holes in center mass are from the P-07 with one magazine of 12 from the P229 in the same area. So that's really two out of three, a good launch for the P-07 and continued excellence from my P229 and a pair of new mags.

Now the bad news. The holes in the Blueman's left arm are almost all from the new-to-me EAA Witness-P Compact .45 ACP for which I traded a full-size .45 ACP, a GKK-45 FEG Hungarian-made Browning Hi-Power clone. I'm not going to ship it back and demand my FEG be returned, but its days as a .45 ACP will be brief.

The rear sight is drift-adjustable but the front sight is fixed so there's nothing I can do about the problem of it shooting about 6 inches low, other than use a bit of Kentucky elevation. I can tap the rear sight to the left and fix the left-right problem, but that's not its only problem.

It's a polymer-frame compact with a 3.6" barrel and it is quite snappy with recoil. Plus the milled surface of the trigger was slapping my trigger finger with each shot, just as my S&W 29 .44 Magnum did when I first got it. I replaced the trigger on the Smith 29 with a smooth combat trigger and solved that problem and I may do that with the Witness-P also.

But what I will most definitely do sooner rather than later with the Witness-P is order a .38 Super conversion slide and magazine. I'm hopeful the .38 Super sights will be a bit closer to point of aim and I'm also hopeful it will be a much better shooter in a different caliber. To make it a hat trick in .45 ACP, the Witness-P choked twice, once on each mag load, which only holds eight rounds. If it can't digest .45 ACP 230-gr. FMJs, it probably won't be any better with hollow points, more likely worse.

Perhaps the slimmer .38 Super or 9x23 rounds will be more to its digestability. I'll be ordering that conversion slide next week, so I shall see. The third photo shows a lineup of pistol rounds I've shot, from left, 9x19mm, .38 Super, 9x23mm, .357 Sig, 10mm, .45 ACP and .44 Magnum.

And if the Witness-P doesn't improve dramatically with .38 Super/9x23, then I'll do what any good football player would do. Drop back and punt. I do work in a gun store and it turns out not to meet my expectations, I can put whole kit and kabooble up for sale and move right along.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Two full-size pistols depart, two compacts arrive

The new small guys are in the house and the old big guys are almost all gone.

At right is my new-to-me EAA Witness-P Compact .45 ACP, which arrived today. It has a 3.6" barrel with a polymer frame and a set of mahogany grips cut and glued on with something called Gorilla Glue by the previous owner. It's not the neatest glue job I ever saw, but the wood does look nice. And it's definitely better looking than the plastic polymer grips underneath, plus the wood grips fill my hand pretty nicely.

Best of all, it's an EAA so I can buy a .38 Super slide for it and shoot not only .38 Super but 9x23mm in it. I shot both in my briefly owned Lone Wolf G20 "experiential" conversion barrel, that wouldn't feed right. That's another story that didn't end well. But both .38 Super and 9x23mm are improvements over standard 9x19mm and I'm a guy who believes more speed and longer bullets are better than slower, shorter bullets. That's why I love .357 Sig and 10mm as well as .45 ACP and 9mm. IMHO, .357 Sig is a really fast 9mm and 10mm is a really fast .45 ACP. Kinda sorta.

I know 10mm is not a .45, it's really a long .40, or more accurately the current .40 S&W is a short 10mm. But what I'm driving at is that 10mm was initially developed as an alternative to .45 ACP, a larger than 9mm round that had faster ballistics than .45 ACP. The "experts" thought it would replace .45 ACP. Shows how wrong "experts" can be. But I still love 10mm for the same reason I love .357 Sig. It's faster than .45 ACP with close to the same grain weight slugs and the foot-pounds of energy delivered are higher. Same is true with .357 Sig over 9mm, it's faster with same grain weight slugs and the foot-pounds of energy delivered is way higher. Plus both 10mm and .357 Sig are flatter shooting at longer ranges than .45 or 9mm.

And I like .38 Super and 9x23mm for the same reasons, speed and energy.

So I have carry pistols in all my favorite calibers, 9x19mm, .357 Sig, 10mm and .45 ACP and as soon as I can afford a new slide, .38 Super or 9x23mm.

I've got a Lone Wolf barrel in 9x25mm for my G20 and I could get one for my G29 too, but even I gotta admit 9x25 is way too much overkill for a carry pistol. It's so freaking loud I'd be deaf to shoot it in self defense without hearing protection. Walking around with ear muffs ain't an option.

Over at gtalk, one poster reported using 9x25mm on a deer and he said the round literally exploded inside the critter. I can see me sitting on the stand in court trying to explain why I used such a huge overkill round in defense.

So I acquired the EAA .45 ACP/.38 Super/9x23mm as a swap for my formerly owned GKK-45, the next photo. It's a great shooter, but being all steel with a 5" barrel, it's not a good candidate for daily carry unless you're big as Godzilla. I'm a pretty large guy, 6' 3" and 265 lbs., but I ain't big enough to carry that monster around.

Next photo is my new CZ 75 P-07 Duty, showing off its replacement ambi-safety levers. The gun shop guru changed out the decockers for safeties so now I can carry the P-07 cocked and locked, which is my personal preference over using a decocker.

Essentially I purchased the P-07 with the money I got for the sale of my Steyr M357-A1 .357 Sig pistol, but it's more accurately the replacement for my soon-to-be-formerly-owned CZ 75 SP-01 Custom, which is the last photo.

The SP-01 Custom has been sold through gunbroker with payment scheduled to arrive Thursday, upon which I will ship it out. It's a full-size pistol like the GKK-45, with a 4.7" barrel, being replaced by the 3.6" barrel P-07, both being 9mm.

And technically speaking the aforementioned Steyr M357-A1 has already been replaced with another .357 Sig, a Sig Sauer P229 Custom Shop Sig-Anti-Snag Generation 2, next photo.

The Steyr MA1 has a 4" barrel and the Sig P229 has a 3.9" barrel so both are compacts, but the issue here is reliability. As good as my Steyr M357-A1 was and still is for its new owner, it was not 100% reliable. More like 98 or 99%. Not bad until you compare it to 100%.

And that's what my formerly owned Sig P226 .357 Sig was for me and what the new Sig P229 has been so far. The Sig P226 was the first of my full-size pistols to be sold and the CZ SP01 will be the last to leave. And that's what my other two .357 Sig pistols have also been, 100% reliable, a 4.25" barrel S&W M&P and a 3.5" barrel M&P. So that made the Steyr M357-A1 my fourth-most-reliable .357 Sig pistol and it had to go.

So all the swapping and selling is done, or will be done on Thursday when the payment for the SP-01 arrives and it ships out.

So come Saturday, I'll be shooting my new-to-me EAA .45 ACP compact and my brand-new-in-the-box CZ 75 P-01 Duty 9mm. C'mon Saturday!

Obama Mockfest goes from Iran to North Korea to Gitmo

Mocking our feckless President is an amazingly easy thing to do these days. Despot leaders in North Korea and Iran do it almost daily with nukes or missiles or both. Wesley Pruden, editor emeritus of the Washington Times, joins in the daily mockfest this morning on that topic.

Two of the peace-loving republics formerly known as the Axis of Evil threw a frightful scare into anyone paying attention Monday, with North Korea exploding a nuclear bomb as powerful as the one that destroyed Hiroshima and Iran telling Barack Obama to get lost (and take his teleprompter with him).

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said he wouldn't accept an invitation to freeze work on his own nuclear weapon and he's not interested in talking to Mr. Obama or anyone else about it. But not to worry. The United Nations Security Council postponed its afternoon tea to hold an "emergency session" to consider options for dealing with developments in Korea. The world is considerably less worried about Iran, since Mr. Ahmadinejad appears to be mostly interested in only killing Jews...

The temptation to deride the reaction from Western capitals, couched as it is in the prissy language of the diplomacy so beloved by Mr. Obama, is irresistible, not only for its pretentious prissiness, but because the evildoers have heard it all so many time before. The presidents and prime ministers of the West need at minimum new speechwriters to project their pretense of toughness, their affectation of strength. They invite mockery at home because they strike neither fear nor caution in the hearts of enemies they insist on regarding as just friends they haven't made yet.

The latest test is a reminder that North Korea "is going it alone as a nuclear power," the executive director of the Center for Korean-America Peace, a Pyongyang front, told the daily Guardian of London. "North Korea doesn't need any talks with America. America is tricky and undesirable. We are not going to worry about sanctions ... we don't care about America and what they say."

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad offered his own mockery of naive intentions, and showed no signs of the unclenched fist that the dear leader in Washington sees in his future.

"The nuclear issue is a finished issue for us," Mr. Ahmadinejad told reporters Monday in Tehran. But he made an offer that Mr. Obama will find difficult to refuse, proposing to debate the president and his teleprompter at the U.N. "regarding the roots of world problems." But no talks about the Iranian bomb. "Our talks [with the major powers] will be only in the framework of cooperation for managing global issues, and nothing else."

And David Brooks at the Noo Yawk Times has remembered what it means to be an op-ed writer, taking an opposing editorial view to the kneejerk leftwingnuts on the editorial and news staff with his own bit of mockery that's so far over the top it's clear over into seeing the actual truth.

There is nothing so inspiring as public service, so I’ve been incredibly moved over the past few weeks to watch squads of corporate executives come to the White House so President Obama could announce that he was giving away their money...

These events have heralded a new era of partnership between the White House and private companies, one that calls to mind the wonderful partnership Germany formed with France and the Low Countries at the start of World War II. The press conferences and events marking this new spirit of cooperation have been the emotional highlights of the administration so far.

These events usually begin when the executives gather in the Oval Office, where they experience certain Enhanced Negotiating Techniques. I’m not exactly sure what the president does to inspire the business leaders’ cooperation and sense of public service, though those who remember the disembowelment scene in “Braveheart” will have a general idea.

Then the president leads the executives out onto the White House lawn for the announcement ceremony. Often, the president will still be carrying the riding crop and the pliers used in the private negotiation. He moves to the microphone while the executives take their pre-assigned places behind him, the jingle of their leg shackles blending with the dulcet tones of spring. I thought one hospital executive was so moved by the occasion that he had slipped into catatonic shock, except that he was blinking “Save Me! Save Me!” in Morse code to his shareholders.
Finally, Cal Thomas offers a sobering rebuttal to Obama's plan to close Gitmo's terrorist prison.

President Obama wants to put at least some of the Guantanamo detainees in maximum-security prisons in the U.S. Assuming an ACLU lawyer doesn't win their release, these suspects might convert others in prison to their cause in order to recruit them for jihad should they be let out. Some of those New York terror suspects were converted to Islam and radicalized while in prison.

A more mature and sobering vision was offered by former Vice President Dick Cheney, who has emerged as the Republican Party's missing backbone.

In a well-crafted and powerful rebuke to President Obama's call for treating terrorists as criminals rather than enemy combatants, Cheney said, "Throughout the '90s, America had responded to these (terrorist) attacks, if at all, on an ad hoc basis ... with everything handled after the fact -- crime scene, arrests, indictments, convictions, prison sentences, case closed. ... 9/11 made necessary a shift of policy, aimed at a clear strategic threat -- what the Congress called 'an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States.' From that moment forward, instead of merely preparing to round up the suspects and count up the victims after the next attack, we were determined to prevent attacks in the first place."

It worked. History will show this approach protected our "values" against those who would destroy them. If there is another attack, President Obama won't be able to blame it on the shortsightedness of the Bush-Cheney administration.

Wouldn't it be doubly ironic if one of the soon-to-be-released Gitmo terrorists committed a terrorist attack on U.S. soil, just as several of the already released terrorists have returned to the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan? Obama wouldn't be able to blame that on Bush-Cheney.

I'm not saying I look forward to another terrorist attack. But I am saying the half-baked, kneejerk leftwing plans of this administration are not making America safer. Far from it.

Monday, May 25, 2009

CZ P-07 Safeties, Ruger LCR dreams and a Steyr carbine

I had a pleasant surprise with my new CZ P-07 today. The trigger guard isn't as big as it looks. I tried out my holsters to see what would fit and lo and behold, it fits my JMG OWB-4 leather holster that was made for my Steyr MA1s. It also fits perfectly and locks into the Bianchi paddle holster I got for my Sig P229 SAS Generation 2. I love it when a plan comes together. Well actually, I didn't plan it at all but it all came together anyway. The Good Lord helps fools and drunks.

I also upgraded the P-07 from decocker to ambi safeties. I'm a klutz and I know it so I took it back to work and got the young man who runs the gun shop to remove the ambi decocker levers and install the ambi safeties. I'll post some photos later this week. I left my camera at work until tomorrow.

I had a bad case of feeling like the southern end of a northbound mule this weekend so I didn't get a chance to take my new P-07 out for a spin. But next weekend, surely. And I've got another trade under way with a .45 ACP Witness P-Compact that's supposed to arrive tomorrow. If it is as promised, I'll ship out my GKK-45, a Browning Hi-Power 45 from Hungary.

And that will complete my trading and sales. My Sig P226 .357 Sig was sold and turned into a Sig P229 .357 Sig (eventually after a tangenital trip for a Marlin 1894 .44 Magnum lever-action rifle). My Steyr M357-A1 was sold and financed the purchase of the CZ P-07.

And lo and behold, on Sunday my CZ SP-01 Custom was purchased by one of Angus Hobdell's range buddies in Mesa, Arizona, who is adding it to his CZ collection. I will be able to pay off my credit-card debt incurred for the unexpected early arrival of the Sig P229! If you were anywhere on the eastern seaboard Sunday afternoon when I saw the sale on gunbroker, you woulda heard me holler.

And there will be a small surplus left over for my next acquisition, which I expect to be a .38 Super slide to convert the EAA Witness .45 P-Compact.

But I've also got my eyes on the new Ruger Light Compact Revolver. We've got them in the shop and it really is an improvement over the Smith .38s.
Click the image to open in full size.
The trigger really has to be experienced to believe. It'll make a great backup and is worthy of me breaking my rule about no .38 Specials. It's as light as a Smith & Wesson Airweight but one gun writer reported he fired 500+ rounds of .38 +Ps without a stop and the rubber grip and polymer frame soaked up the recoil so well his hand wasn't even sore after that marathon firing session.

But guess what happened today? Some guy sold the gun shop a Steyr 1895 8x56R straight-pull bolt action that looks to be in perfect condition, very nice wood, even has five boxes of ammo with the stripper clips and a couple of boxes of modern Hornady ammo without the stripper clips. And it's only $175. Damn. There goes my next pistol plan. It looks just like this Steyr Model 1895 Budapest Stutzen carbine at J&G Sales. And they got ammo too.
Click the image to open in full size.

'The Death of America' may be looming upon us

Prophet Joe Biden has been right on exactly one thing since Obama picked him as vice president. He predicted shortly after winning the election, foreign despots would challenge the rookie President with an international crisis. But Biden should have used the plural instead of the singular.

Here on this Memorial Day, there's enough international crises on America's plate to feed a hog. We're still in the middle of the war on terror with troops fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Iran's working on building a nuclear bomb, this morning North Korea tested a bigger bomb than the last one they set off, and what is Obama doing about it? He'll probably pull out all the stops and -- make another speech. That'll show 'em not to mess with Barack, won't it?

But as worrisome as North Korea is, and it's bad, what Iran will do if allowed to get the bomb is just unthinkable. They will destroy the nation of Israel on day two after they get the bomb.

And what is Obama doing about this threat to our nation's only true friend in the Middle East?

Worse than nothing. He and his administration are trying their best to force Israel to meekly submit to their own destruction under his watch. Dick Morris and Eileen McGann have the low-down in their report today, which is chillingly titled The Death of Israel.

From Caroline Glick, deputy editor and op-ed writer for the Jerusalem Post, comes alarming news. An expert on Arab-Israeli relations with excellent sources deep inside Netanyahu's government, she reports that CIA chief Leon Panetta, who recently took time out from his day job (feuding with Nancy Pelosi) to travel to Israel "read the riot act" to the government warning against an attack on Iran.

More ominously, Glick reports (likely from sources high up in the Israeli government) that the Obama administration has all but accepted as irreversible and unavoidable fact that Iran will soon develop nuclear weapons. She writes, "...we have learned that the [Obama] administration has made its peace with Iran's nuclear aspirations. Senior administration officials acknowledge as much in off-record briefings. It is true, they say, that Iran may exploit its future talks with the US to run down the clock before they test a nuclear weapon. But, they add, if that happens, the US will simply have to live with a nuclear-armed mullocracy."...

All this means is that Israel's life is in danger. If Iran gets the bomb, it will use it to kill six million Jews. No threat of retaliation will make the slightest difference. One cannot deter a suicide bomber with the threat of death. Nor can one deter a theocracy bent on meriting admission to heaven and its virgins by one glorious act of violence. Iran would probably not launch the bomb itself, anyway, but would give it to its puppet terrorists to send to Israel so it could deny responsibility. Obama, bent on appeasement, would likely not retaliate with nuclear weapons. And Israel will be dead and gone.
And if America abandons Israel, God will abandon America. I didn't say that, God did. Long ago, God called a man named Abram, who God later renamed Abraham, to leave his pagan past behind and begin a journey to he knew not where, to become the founder of a new nation.
1 The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you.

2 "I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you;
I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing.

3 I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse;
and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you."

America was founded on religious freedom and from the refounding of Israel in 1948 to the present, America has been a friend of that nation. But if under the leadership of Barack Obama, America abandons Israel, God will abandon America, just as He promised Abram so long ago.

Pray hard for our country this Memorial Day and pray hard for the nation of Israel also. God has a plan and Israel will not be destroyed, which the Bible makes very clear. But there's nothing that I can find in the Bible that points to the nation of America having a role of any type in the great conclusion of recorded history which I believe is upon is. Perhaps Obama's curse is why.

Lest we forget: A WWII Bataan survivor's sketches

The current generation has vaguely heard there was something called World War II and most of them probably can't tell you what decade it was fought in, much less anything about it, like the Bataan Death March in the Philippines, where thousands of U.S. and Allied soldiers died. One of the survivors was an Army private named Ben Steele, whose story is told today in The New York Times.
IN the fall of 1940, Ben Steele, a 22-year-old Montana ranch hand, enlisted in the Army Air Corps at the prodding of his mother. A year later, his unit, the 19th Bombardment Group, was shipped to Clark Field in the Philippines, part of an unsuccessful American effort to deter Japanese aggression in the Pacific. (Soon after Private Steele arrived, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and then the Philippines.)

Private Steele then took part in the first major land battle for America in World War II, the battle for the peninsula of Bataan in the Philippine Islands — a 99-day fight that ended on April 9, 1942, in the surrender of more than 76,000 men under American command, the worst defeat in United States military history.

Afterward, the Japanese set their sick and starving American and Filipino captives on a 66-mile walk under a broiling sun to prison camp, an infamous trek now known as the Bataan Death March.

Early in his three years of captivity, Private Steele, crippled by malaria, jaundice, blood poisoning and beriberi, became an invalid in a prisoner-of-war hospital in Manila. One day during his slow recovery, he pulled a burned stick from a cooking fire and started making scratches on the concrete floor. With some tutoring from a fellow prisoner who was an engineer, those scratches turned into sketches, and soon cellmates were scrounging paper and stubs of pencil for him.

When Navy P.O.W. doctors noticed Private Steele’s talent, they suggested that he secretly begin to document their experience. He made 50 such sketches, which an Army chaplain hid in the false bottom of a Mass kit. The chaplain was then shipped to a prison camp in Japan, and en route his vessel was sunk by American aircraft. Though the chaplain survived, Private Steele’s sketches ended up at the bottom of the South China Sea.

When he returned home to Montana after the war, Mr. Steele began to recreate and refine his early work, filling scores of sketchbooks. His aim, he says, has always been “to remember” — to remember the more than 10,000 American prisoners from the Philippines who died in Japanese captivity from April 1942 to August 1945.
God help us, here we are today making a big deal politically out of three, count 'em, only three terrorists who were directly involved in the terrorists attacks on America on 9/11, who had water poured on them until they thought they were drowning. Waterboarding my hindquarters! What the Japanese did in WWII to our troops makes waterboarding sound like a picnic.

Show your patriotism this Memorial Day, and pray

Just because I can, "Yes, we can!" here's some bumper stickers et c. that I really like from The Patriot Depot. How better to celebrate Memorial Day that exercising our right of free speech given to us by the blood, sweat and tears of all the generations of Americans fallen in battle?
Yes folks, we have a President who thinks he can stimulate the economy by printing more "money," raising your taxes, and spending our grand children's inheritance to win the votes of illegal immigrants, dead people, and Democrats. Furthermore, he can't prove he was born in America. We know he lived in Kenya, so it's quite possible that this is his home country. Therefore, somewhere in Kenya, a village must be missing its idiot!

Of course,we're just trying to have a little fun and make the Liberals mad in the process. The really scary part is that President Obama is not an idiot. Every decision he makes is calculated to take one more liberty away and moves us one step closer to full-blown communism.
And The Patriot Depot also reports that a man in Louisiana was detained by police there while they investigated whether he was a terrorist for displaying their "Don't Tread On Me" sticker.

A customer service representative at The Patriot Depot just received a call from Rosemary in Ball, Louisiana alerting him that her brother-in-law was stopped by small town Louisiana police and detained by the roadside for half an hour. A background check was conducted to determine whether he was a member of an “extremist” group. Why? Her brother-in-law (name not disclosed for privacy) had purchased a conservative “Don’t Tread on Me” bumper sticker from The Patriot Depot and displayed it on his car.

The bumper sticker is based on the famous flag designed by American Revolution era general and statesman Christopher Gadsden. The yellow flag featured a coiled diamondback rattlesnake ready to strike, with the slogan “Don’t Tread on Me!” underneath it. Benjamin Franklin helped make the rattlesnake a symbol of Americans’ reluctance to quarrel but vigilance and resolve in defense of their rights. By 1775 when Gadsden presented his flag to the commander-in-chief of the Navy, the rattlesnake was a symbol of the colonies and of their need to unite in defense of threats to their God-given and inherited rights. The flag and the bumper sticker symbolize American patriotism, the need to defend Americans’ rights, and resistance to tyranny’s threats to American liberty. Those threats included—and include—illegal taxation, profanation of Americans’ rights, and violation of the fundamental principles of American law.

Now don't that just give you the warm fuzzies and make you want to show your patriotism on Memorial Day? It's bad enough that we got a bunch of rookies in power who can't find their behinds with both hands, but they also don't know their history. And those who are ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it. Viva la Revolution!

But seriously, take a minute today to bow your head in respect to the men and women, from our founding fathers on forward, who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom by laying down their lives for this nation, and say a prayer for the future of America.

I woke up this morning with one of the verses from "America the Beautiful" playing in my head, sung by the late great Ray Charles, a true patriot.

O beautiful for heroes proved
In liberating strife.
Who more than self their country loved
And mercy more than life!
America! America!
May God thy gold refine
Till all success be nobleness
And every gain divine!

Friday, May 22, 2009

A Steyr departs the fold and a new CZ comes home

Working in a gun shop is so much fun I almost feel guilty about getting paid to talk about guns all day, show folks how they work and sell them whatever they want and need.

But as it sayeth in the King James Version, when it comes to exercising fiscal responsibility with my money, it sucketh. As soon as I get some free cash in hand, zoom, out it goes and another new firearm comes home.

This was a really good week. I sold my Steyr MA1 in .357 Sig, which if I was a fiscally responsible person, would have meant I could use the cash to pay off a good chunk of the credit-card debt I ran up buying a new Sig P229 SAS .357 Sig that I special ordered.

It was supposed to take weeks if not months to arrive from the Sig Sauer Custom Shop, but instead it came in on the Friday following the order going in on Monday. That has to be a record for a Sig Custom Shop order. They musta had some free time on their hands or had one already built waiting.

So I had to use a credit card to pay for the Sig. But the same week I sold the Steyr, lo and behold what comes in the shop but the newest product from CZ, the new P-07 Duty compact 9mm.

It's a traditional Double-Action/Single Action pistol, which I prefer over Double-Action-Only, though I own and carry both. And it has ambi-decockers, which works well for me, being a lefty. It's small but not too small, it's light, but not too light. It's just the perfect balance of size and weight to make it a good shooter and a good carry pistol. It's a bit ugly but...

I took photos of this nasty, brutish-looking critter for gunbroker so I could post it for the shop and got the page up on Wednesday. Then today I bought it myself and brought it home.

It may be ugly the way a Glock is ugly, but it's pure CZ engineering, which IMHO is the best grip angle in the industry and truly great all-around ergonomics. If it shoots as good as my CZ 75 SP-01 Custom (which cost more than twice as much) I'll not really be surprised at all.

The P-07 has only a 3.7" barrel vs. the 4.7" barrel in the SP-01 and it has a polymer frame vs. the steel frame of the SP-01, so it may not be quite as sweet a shooter. But I fully expect it to be a very good one and it's a whole lot lighter and more compact, which it's supposed to be as a carry pistol.

I've never heard anyone describe the SP-01 as a carry pistol, but it's not designed to be one. But that's exactly what the P-07 is designed for, daily duty, hence its name, the CZ 75 P-01 Duty. It's a CZ 75 under the skin, one of the most copied pistol designs in the world, second only to the John Browning's 1911 .45 ACP. And it's a 9mm, so it doesn't need a heavy steel frame to be a good shooter. And the best part is the price. I brought it home for well under half what I shelled out for the SP-01, nearly $1K, that I'm now trying to sell.

And the P-07 has one design feature that allows it to be set up like the SP-01 Custom. The P-07 comes with dual decocking levers installed, but the good folks at CZ also include dual-safety parts in the box so you can swap out the decockers for genuine ambi safeties. That allows you to carry the P-07 like John M. Browning's 1911, cocked and locked. How sweet it is!

Maybe when the SP-01 Custom sells, I'll pay off that credit card balance. And maybe not... Who knows what will come along to tempt me next? This job may sucketh when it comes to being responsible about where my money goes. But in ever other way possible, I love it!

If the Good Lord's willing and the creek don't rise, I'll post a P-07 range report tomorrow evening. Is there anything better than a Saturday at the range with a new pistol in hand?

P.S. Feeling like I been rode hard and put up muddy today. No range trip. Maybe next Saturday. I sure hope this ain't a bug that's got me feeling like the south end of a northbound mule. I hope it's just being 61 years ancient and struck with B.B. King Disease. I'm T-I-D-E! Say it out loud and you'll get it.

Mr. Irrelevant makes another speech with no content

What if the President of the United States made a speech, but a tree didn't fall in the woods where nobody was around to hear it? The obvious answer is the press and the leftwingnuts would still applaud, whether there was any actual content or not. And so far, I have yet to hear any of the multitudinous blather of Obama that had any content whatsoever. "Blah, blah, blah...Bush did it!"

Our juvenile "never run anything but his mouth" (copyright Jesse Jackson on Obama) President is proving himself daily to be Mr. Irrelevant. He reminds me of my daughter's first full sentence at about the age of 2. "Robby did it!" Her older brother Robby was her convenient scapegoat for anything she might possibly be blamed for. "Layla! Have you messed your diaper?" With a straight face, this little blonde beauty would look at me and say "Robby did it!" and continue playing.

And for lo these first 100+ days, the only memorable words Obama has yet to utter are repeated over and over again ad nauseum, "Bush did it!" But finally, Mr. Irrelevant has reached a new low even for him. He has changed his tune to "Cheney did it!"

Yesterday, we were treated to the ridiculous theater of the President of the United States scheduling a speech deliberately just before the weeks-long-scheduled speech of the former Vice President of the United States, to rebut Dick Cheney's comments in advance.

How irrelevant do you have to be to try to one-up the former VP of the previous administration?

President Obama on Thursday vigorously defended his decision to close the Guantanamo Bay detention site but said some terrorist suspects would be held indefinitely, setting up the prospect of a painstaking fight with Congress over relocating detainees to the United States and disappointing supporters critical of what they saw as a concession to Bush-era policies.

The announcement came midway through a 50-minute address, which kicked off a highly public and impassioned debate between Mr. Obama and former Vice President Dick Cheney over how far the government should go to defend itself from terrorism - a back and forth that transfixed Washington and much of the nation...

But it was the give and take with Mr. Cheney that made the day memorable and historically significant.

Mr. Cheney's speech at the institute had been scheduled for a few weeks, and it appeared that the White House intentionally scheduled Mr. Obama's speech so that it fell right before the former vice president's. The White House has already in its four months handpicked conservative figures with low popularity ratings or who are repellent to moderates, such as radio-show host Rush Limbaugh, as foils for them to fight against publicly.

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said "there was an awareness that [Mr. Cheney] was speaking, but the speech wasn't scheduled because he was speaking on a certain day."

And while I'm writing about irrelevant idiots in high office, if you thought that doofus who was briefly press secretary for President Bush (whathisname who wrote the book) was the most clueless White House press flack in history, Robert Gibbs is one-upping him spectacularly. Gibbs is such a doofus, even the liberal-leftwing press (pardon my repetition) is making jokes about him.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A victory for gun rights -- from the Obama administration!

I'll take a victory for gun rights regardless of where it comes from, even from President Obama. The unlikely victory in this case is the right of lawfully licensed concealed-carry gun owners to be lawfully armed in our national parks. There's more danger than bears out there, and the parks rule was set up in the waning days of the Bush administration, only to be suspended in the early days of the Obama administration. Now it seems like that gun right will be restored by Obama as he compromises with his own party members in Congress to get some votes he needs for one of his totalitarian state plans. Credit-card users will take a hit but gun owners will get something good as a trade-off. Win some, lose some. But it is a win.
WASHINGTON — Advocates of gun rights are poised to win a Congressional victory that eluded them under a Republican president.

To the frustration and discouragement of many Democrats, House and Senate lawmakers and aides say it now appears likely that President Obama will this week sign into law a provision allowing visitors to national parks and refuges to carry loaded and concealed weapons.

The White House is lukewarm at best on the gun provision, which was added to a popular measure imposing new rules on credit card companies. But the Democrats who now control both Congress and the White House appear ready to allow it to survive rather than derail a consumer-friendly credit card measure that Mr. Obama is eager to sign as Congress heads off for a Memorial Day recess.

“Timing is everything in politics,” said Senator Tom Coburn, Republican of Oklahoma and the champion of the gun proposal.

A majority of Democrats in the House and Senate still typically come down on the side of gun control. But the fact that they have been outmaneuvered by Republicans on gun issues is rooted in the fact that recently swollen Democratic ranks include senators and House members who represent Western states and more rural areas where gun ownership is popular and deemed sacrosanct.

When those Democrats team up with Republicans, they constitute a clear majority in the House and Senate.

“It is a shame,” said Senator Barbara Boxer, Democrat of California. “But you have to come to a realization around here that at this point in time, the N.R.A. gets the votes,” she said referring to the National Rifle Association.

There's some delicious irony here. Democrats in 2008, led by Rahm Emanuel, now Obama's chief of staff, recruited some conservative candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives in order to win some elections last fall. But now those blue-dog Democrats are voting their conscience vs. typical libtard anti-gun views and the result is a victory for gun rights. Don't you just love it when an underhanded political move turns around and bites the devious politicker in the behind?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

An anniversary of tragedy passes almost unnoticed

Is abortion "a woman's right" or is it murder of a helpless, unborn infant? Theologian John Piper has a few words about President Obama's statement about abortion on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade. And Piper's response can be summed up in one little, but very powerful word: "No!"

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Revenge of Cheney is aided by Obama's power grab

Take a wild guess what the most-read post on my blog is during its short history?

It's Let's Go Fly Fishing with Mr. Nice Guy, quoting a Weekly Standard report on a fishing trip on the Snake River with Vice-President Dick Cheney shortly before he left office.

The most under-appreciated vice president ever, Cheney didn't care a fig about his popularity while in office, he just quietly did his utmost to protect our country, earning his Darth Vader nickname from the leftwingnuts. Hey, anybody that bunch hates has got to be doing something right.

And Cheney has proven himself to be a valuable public servant out of office by speaking out in defense of our nation once again, blasting the Obama administration for releasing the CIA torture memos that document the terrible waterboarding torture of guess how many terrorists? A grand total of three, all three of which were directly involved in the 9/11 attacks on our nation.

But a funny thing happened to Darth Vader and the left's vilification of this good man. While he was speaking out, he blasted those leftwingnuts in office, like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who knew all about the CIA waterboarding and applauded it shortly after 9/11, only to turncoat in the present political climate and accuse the CIA of lying to them about it. And guess who gets hoisted by her own petard? None other than fancy Nancy from San Fran. Couldn't happen to a nicer gal, could it? There's something delicious about libtards being hung by their own words.

And Bill Kristol points out in a current article in the Weekly Standard how Cheney's courageous stand in the face of withering criticism from the Obamessiah's defenders is defending America.

Dick Cheney is reminding Republicans that they need to defend themselves when attacked.

When President Obama released the Justice Department interrogation memos a month ago, Cheney denounced him for doing so. He explained why it was inappropriate and unwise to release such documents. But he did more. He didn't just defend himself and the administration in which he served. He fought back, and encouraged others to do so.

He challenged the president to release CIA memos evaluating the effectiveness of the enhanced interrogation techniques. He raised the question of whether congressional Democrats--Nancy Pelosi, for one--had known of, and at least tacitly approved of, the allegedly horrifying abuses of the allegedly lawless Bush administration.

Now, a month later, Pelosi is attacking career CIA officials for lying to Congress, and other Democrats are scrambling to distance themselves from her. Meanwhile, the Obama administration has pulled back on threats to prosecute Bush-era lawyers, reversed itself on releasing photos of alleged military abuse of prisoners, and embraced the use of military commissions to try captured terrorists. The administration now looks irresponsible when it lives up to candidate Obama's rhetoric, and hypocritical when it vindicates Bush policies the candidate attacked.

Thank God for Dick Cheney. Along with Rush Limbaugh and Newt Gingrich, these three are taking a stand against the lunatic left and finally the Republicans in office are joining the fight.

House Minority Leader John Boehner steps up to the plate and joins the battle at long last.

And it also appears the lynch mob clamoring for Pelosi's head has been joined by Obama's chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, who Bill Kristol sees as the guiding hand behind CIA Chief Leon Panetta's blast at Pelosi, rebutting her charge that she was lied to about torture by the CIA.

Over at the Washington Post's Post Partisan blog, Kristol writes:

Commentators have been struck -- though not perhaps as much as they should have been -- by the extraordinary character of CIA Director Leon Panetta’s blunt and stark rebuke of Nancy Pelosi. Responding to political debates that “reached a new decibel level [Thursday] when the CIA was accused [by Pelosi] of misleading Congress,” Panetta wrote Friday that “our contemporaneous records from September 2002 indicate that CIA officers briefed truthfully on the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah.”

But did Panetta simply decide on his own to send this letter? It’s almost inconceivable. Panetta is a former member of Congress and a former White House chief of staff. President Obama made him CIA director only four months ago. Even if his motivation for the letter was in part driven by an institutional imperative to defend his agency, Panetta would have understood the political implications of humiliating a House speaker of his own party. He surely at least ran the letter by White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel to get clearance. It’s also possible that Panetta was encouraged to send the letter by Emanuel.

As Emanual has already been quoted as saying about the power grab during the economic crisis, never let a good crisis go to waste. It sure looks like he's using the Pelosi torture crisis to get rid of the Speaker of the House and orchestrate the elevation of someone of his own choosing.

Probably so, but I agree. Off with Pelosi's head and we'll deal with whoever replaces her. In this case, the enemy of my enemy is my friend and getting rid of Pelosi is in the nation's best interest.

And before I leave the topic of our most under-appreciated vice president, guess what the current idiot holding that office shot off his big mouth about? Blogger Stephen F. Hayes at the Weekly Standard comments that Joe Biden has revealed the secret "undisclosed location" where Cheney so famously went when national security issues threatened the Bush administration.

According to an account in Newsweek, Biden did give up one of the country's secrets at another dinner where journalists and politicians make fun of Republicans (and occasionally laugh at each other). Biden told his dinnermates about the existence of a secret bunker under the Vice President's Residence at the U.S. Naval Observatory.
Eleanor Clift writes:

Ever wonder about that secure, undisclosed location where Dick Cheney secreted himself after the 9/11 attacks? Joe Biden reveals the bunker-like room is at the Naval Observatory in Washington, where Cheney lived for eight years and which is now home to Biden. The veep related the story to his head-table dinner mates when he filled in for President Obama at the Gridiron Club earlier this year. He said the young naval officer giving him a tour of the residence showed him the hideaway, which is behind a massive steel door secured by an elaborate lock with a narrow connecting hallway lined with shelves filled with communications equipment. The officer explained that when Cheney was in lock down, this was where his most trusted aides were stationed, an image that Biden conveyed in a way that suggested we shouldn’t be surprised that the policies that emerged were off the wall.

Despite more than fifteen trips to the VPR over the past five years, and despite having conducted dozens of interviews about security precautions taken for Cheney and his staff after 9/11, I was never told such a bunker existed.

I was able to learn and write about Cheney's getaways at Camp David, extra measures taken for him when he traveled on Air Force Two, and even the use of a "dummy" plane sometimes used in combat zones. But no one ever mentioned this secure facility at the Naval Observatory.

The obvious conclusion: Its existence was highly classified.

So what was Joe Biden doing talking about it at the Gridiron Dinner? And, if it was indeed classified, will this disclosure be referred to the Justice Department?

Joe Biden ought to rode out of town on the same rail with Nancy Pelosi. God help our nation.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sharpshooters 'R' Us Gun IQ Test: Name this tune

Here's a Gun IQ test for members of Sharpshooters 'R' Us (formerly known as Gun Nutz 'R' Us, renamed due to bad publicity for admitting to being gun nuts). Name this tune being played by the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain. If you don't get the name right with the first three notes, you're expelled from Sharpshooters 'R' Us and you have to describe yourself as a semi-gun-nut only.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Lightweight Nancy takes on Heavyweight CIA: TKO at 11

As usual, Sir Charles Krauthammer cuts through all the BS concerning Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi's stammering, stuttering half-truths, lies and damn lies about the CIA and torture.

Krauthammer also provides some overwhelming factoids regarding Pelosi's charge that the CIA lied to her:
"Her charge of the CIA lying to her is utterly implausible. Why would it lie to her and tell all the others the truth? It makes no sense at all; and it was refuted by the black and white Obama CIA memo –– not a memo out of the Prince of Darkness: Bush and Cheney; but Obama CIA –– would show that in the briefing in which she says none of this simulated drowning occurred, they had specifically told her about the Enhanced Interrogation Techniques that had been used on a prisoner, obviously, a month earlier."
Watch and enjoy Pelosi getting utterly Krauthammered on Fox News last night:

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

World's first AR FiveSeven Carbine? Possibly

The gun shop where I work may well have created the world's first AR Five-Seven Carbine. What's that, you may ask?

The FN Herstal Five-Seven Pistol (top right) and the FN PS-90 Personal Defense Weapon (top left) share a new cartridge developed by FN, the 5.7x28mm, basically a short version of the .223/5.56x45mm NATO. If you convert the 5.7mm into its equivalent in inches it comes out to about .224 caliber, so it's just 1/1000th larger in diameter than .223. But the latter number indicates the length of the two cartridges, 45mm for NATO and 28mm for the FN 5.7mm.

But now the differences between the two have been bridged by a company that creates the AR Five-Seven upper assembly, designed to fit on the lower assembly of most AR-type rifles and carbines. Which is exactly what we did at our shop as seen in the third photo.

We took an AR Five-Seven upper assembly, which fires the 5.7x28mm round, and installed it on a Rock River AR lower assembly and voila! The world's first AR Five-Seven Carbine. Maybe. At least it's the first one I've ever seen or heard about. But since the AR Five-Seven upper assembly is on the market, surely some enterprising gun shop has put it on an AR lower assembly and is selling the duo as a complete AR Five-Seven carbine or rifle. Maybe so, but this is know for sure. Our shop has one and I listed it today on gunbroker, so you can have one.

Or you can buy yourself an AR Five-Seven upper and put it on your AR. Or you can buy both the AR Five-Seven upper and the Rock River lower assembly and build your own. But if you do, don't forget you gotta have the FN Five-Seven PDW magazine to make the thing work. And you gotta have some 5.7x28mm ammo too. If you can't find those, give the shop a call. We've got 'em.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Fun with a pair of .357 Sigs and a 9mm pocket pistol

Had some more fun at the range Saturday with my new Sig P229 SAS Gen2 and my almost-new S&W M&P Compact, both .357 Sig pistols.

I had four new mags for the P229 to test plus the M&P Compact still needs breaking in with only about 200-300 rounds through it.

The M&P Compact trigger is not nearly as user friendly as the trigger in my M&P full-size .357 Sig, so I'm hoping that as I shoot it, it will break in and get as smooth and slick at its big brother was and is right out of the box.

I ran one 12-rd. mag full of hollow points and four mags of FMJs and Speer CF Frangible through the Sig P229 standing at 10 yards, one at the head and the rest at the body of the 11x17" small red-man target shown at right.

And then I followed that with one 10-rd. mag and two 15-rd. mags with the M&P Compact, one at the head and the rest at the body.

All rounds with both pistols were rapid fire as quickly as I could get the sights back on the target after each shot.

A few rounds landed off the paper but the vast majority were in the "kill zone."

Then I fired one 8-rd. magazine from my Kel-Tec PF-9 9mm back-up pistol to try out a new carry load, Hornady Critical Defense 115-gr. FTX.

I was aiming at the thumbnail-size little redman in the top-left corner of the 11x17" target, standing at 10 yards.

Six of the 8 landed in the region of the thumbnail, with one in the red and one in the rectangle.

Total spread of those six is about 4-5", which isn't bad with a 3"-barrel pocket pistol.

I use the PF-9 for my "church gun" as a sole carry and backup the rest of the time and for an inexpensive pocket pistol, it has surprisingly good accuracy. If you take your time and squeeze off rounds, you can put 'em where you want 'em.

An unsettling experience with a Russian Nagant revolver

Went shooting at the range Saturday with one of my "Sharpshooters 'R' Us" buddies, a retired U.S. Air Force veteran, who brought his Russian Nagant 7.62x38Rmm revolver, an ancient single-action design dating back to 1895.

My buddy Leon is a reloader as well as military arms collector and I save my brass for him if he's not at the range when I shoot. And he found to his delight that brass from my Charter Arms Patriot .327 Federal Magnum works very well for reloading the 7.62x38R for his Nagant revolver. He said brass for the Nagant is hard to find and expensive.

So he was trying out some of his .327/Nagant reloads and we had a very unsettling experience. I shot his Nagant and found it to be quite accurate at 10 yards despite its rather stiff trigger. I put 2 out of 3 rounds in the black of an 8" bulls-eye target.

I was shooting my new Sig Sauer P229 and my fairly new S&W M&P Compact, both .357 Sig caliber, while Leon was popping some more reloads in his Nagant.

When we paused to reload, he said his Nagant had sounded odd as well as having quite a bit of blow-back around the cylinder, so he suspected a squib load, a projectile stuck in the barrel. Blow-back around the cylinder is usually minimal with the Nagant due to its tight locking design.
"The Nagant M1895 was chambered for a proprietary cartridge, 7.62x38R, and featured an unusual "gas-seal" system in which the cylinder moved forward when the gun was cocked to close the gap between the cylinder and the barrel, providing a (theoretical) boost to the muzzle velocity of the fired projectile."
Leon got a bore rod out of his tools and inserted it down the bore and sure enough, it was blocked. He also had a brass hammer so with me holding the Nagant, he began tapping the rod down the bore to clear it. Imagine our surprise when one projectile is tapped out but the bore is still blocked! Leon keeps tapping and another projectile falls out. But the bore is still blocked! He keeps tapping and a third projectile finally falls out and the bore is finally clear.

Three stuck bullets in the barrel and this ancient revolver didn't blow up in his hand! Don't tell me the Russians don't know how to build tank-tough firearms. And after the bore was cleared, we examined it carefully and there was no swelling or any apparent damage.

Close examination of the jammed projectiles showed deep indentations from the lands and grooves of the barrel, much deeper than normal. Leon said this indicates the .311-size jacketed rounds he was using for reloads are a bit too large for the Nagant's bore. And being cautious with his first reloads for the Nagant, he had used a light powder load. The combination of slightly too-large projectile and a light powder load results in a squib load. If the powder charge had not been light, the second and third projectile would no doubt have caused the barrel to explode.

Leon says he's going to drop down to about .308 bullets for future reloads with a higher charge. The .327 Federal Magnum brass can certainly handle about any powder charge you want to put in it as the cartridge is factory loaded to handle up to 45,000 psi, which is a truckload of psi's.

So all's well that ends well, but if Leon had kept on shooting, who knows what would have happened. That Nagant would surely have blown up if he had fired another round or two.

The Good Lord looks out for fools and drunks and members of "Sharpshooters 'R' Us" too!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Keep Gitmo open -- and send the leftwingnut lunatics there

Coming to a street near you, those poor, misunderstood, abused souls who will soon be released from Club Med East, otherwise known as Gitmo by the leftwingnut lunatic fringe now in power.

And speaking of the wailing from the left about the horrors of torture on those poor souls vacationing at Gitmo that "absolutely must be released onto the streets of America, right now!" let me quote Ann Coulter, who blows up the latest absurdity of "reporting" on torture history.
To claim that the Japanese -- architects of the Bataan Death March -- were prosecuted for "waterboarding" would be like saying Ted Bundy was executed for engaging in sexual harassment.

What the Japanese did to their POWs made even the Nazis blanch. The Japanese routinely beheaded and bayoneted prisoners; forced prisoners to dig their own graves and then buried them alive; amputated prisoners' healthy arms and legs, one by one, for sport; force-fed prisoners dry rice and then filled their stomachs with water until their bowels exploded; and injected them with chemical weapons in order to observe, time and record their death throes before dumping them in mass graves.

While only 4 percent of British and American troops captured by German or Italian forces died in captivity, 27 percent of British and American POWs captured by the Japanese died in captivity. Japanese war crimes were so atrocious that even rape was treated as only a secondary war crime in the Tokyo trial, similar to what happens during an R. Kelly trial.

Blow 'em away Ann. Get your gun out. We're gonna need ours soon. Keep your powder dry.

Flirting with .22 Magnum pistols, for fun or seriously?

I'm such a twit. When it comes to pistols I'm still a kid at heart, or more accurately a raging-hormone teenager with a head that's easily turned.

Such is the case of my latest would-be sweetheart, a Smith & Wesson 351PD AirLite .22 Magnum 7-shot Revolver with a beautiful set of wood grips.

I listed one on gunbroker today for the gun shop where I'm working and it stole my heart. Again.

It's a bit pricey, $600, but it just so happens that's there one at the shop in like-new condition that someone traded in just the other day that's priced a bit lower than that and maybe it will fit into my light-carry handgun plans.

I've been fond of .22 Magnum since Hector was a pup and I was, too. I bought a Winchester 94 .22 Magnum lever-action rifle some 30 years ago or more and like a fool I traded it away for something foolish. At least I still have the Ithaca Model 37 12 Gauge pump shotgun I got for it.

I needed a hunting shotgun at the time more than I needed a plinking rifle, or so I thought, and it must not have been a totally bad idea as I've quit hunting now but my Ithaca is enjoying a second career with a shortened 18.5" barrel as my home-defense riot gun.

I had a second fling with .22 Magnum more recently when I ran across an AMT AutoMag II semi-auto pistol in a local gunshop. I'd been wanting one for years and hadn't took seriously some tales I'd heard about the AMT's being jam-a-matics.

I bought it and then I found out how they earned that reputation. There's a good reason that .22 Magnum semi-automatic pistols aren't widely manufactured and the AMTs are exhibit no. 1. The engineering problems are hard to overcome and the one I briefly owned was not an overcomer.

The one I had was a very-hard-to-find 4" barrel model, center in the bottom photo, shown with my currently owned Steyr M357-A1 .357 Sig pistol and my formerly owned S&W 1076 10mm pistol.

I tried every type of .22 Magnum ammo I could find in that AMT AutoMag II and it didn't like any of them. Best it ever did was cycle two out of 10 shots without jamming. Not good.

I traded it back to the local dealer where I got it and moved on. But that S&W 351PD may be more than just a passing fancy. It only weighs 10.5 oz. and though it is hardly serious enough for a main carry, I think it is serious enough for a back-up carry. Since I took the job at the gun store, I've gotten very serious about carry, always toting a main and a backup piece to work.

Gun stores and cop bars are probably the two worst places in the universe to try to rob because almost everybody in both places will be armed and ready to respond vigorously. But crooks aren't rocket scientists in the first place or they wouldn't be trying to rob places. So as the military experts say, plan for what can happen, not just what you think may happen.

Or as gun writer Clint Smth puts it, one gun equals no gun if it fails, so two guns equals at least one. As another gun writer I like, Massad Ayoob puts it, I think I'll carry one semi-auto and one revolver on the theory that St. Peter will surely smile on Jeff Cooper and Bill Jordan.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Sarah to highlight NRA banquet with new moose gun

What do you get the woman who has everything? In particular, the governor of the great state of Alaska who already has her own moose gun? Another moose gun, of course, and just to make sure it will get the leftwingnuts' panties in a wad again, let's make it an Assault Rifle in moose caliber.

That's precisely what the National Rifle Association is doing for Sarah Palin, who is a lifetime NRA member and proud to be a hunter and a strong defender of our Second Amendment right to bear arms. The New York Daily News has the story about Sarah's new moose gun.

The all-white "Alaskan Hunter" - fashionable until Labor Day - is the civilian version of a modified M-4 rifle carried by U.S. troops overseas.

Alaska's feisty Republican governor, who is weighing a potential 2012 presidential bid, will receive the rifle made by Templar Consulting at a May 14 NRA banquet.

It's engraved with Palin's name and adorned with a map of the state on the collapsible stock - made legal after the expiration of the assault weapons ban in 2004. The Big Dipper from the state flag is etched on the magazine well behind a vented barrel guard.

The rifle is chambered in .50-caliber "Beowulf." It's the same caliber used by heavy machine guns, which can take down big game, and in war zones "can disable both motor vehicles and assailants with body armor," according to ammo manufacturer Alexander Arms' Web site.

Templar gun designer Bob Reynolds told the NRA's magazine that Palin had stood up for Second Amendment gun rights and "I just wanted to do something to give back."

Well, if Sarah can go to .50 cal., maybe I will too. I've been thinking about one of those G.I. .50 cal. conversion slides for my Glock 20 10mm. I've already got the 9x25mm conversion barrel, which is sorta 9mm Super Magnum, for my G20. Might as well step on up to .50 G.I., too.

Monday, May 4, 2009

God Talk: Common sense from a Berkeley professor?

Believe it or else, there's a writer at the Noo Yawk Times I've added to my bookmarks. Technically speaking he's not a staff writer, just a blogger for the NYT, but what he writes actually makes good ol' common sense, which is quite uncommon today and always has been.

He's Stanley Fish and he's a liberal arts professor in Miami who has also taught at Berkeley and Duke, so he's gotta be just another leftwingnut, right? Well apparently not, based on his current column, which he titles God Talk, his review of a book by a British author.

In the opening sentence of the last chapter of his new book, “Reason, Faith and Revolution,” the British critic Terry Eagleton asks, “Why are the most unlikely people, including myself, suddenly talking about God?” His answer, elaborated in prose that is alternately witty, scabrous and angry, is that the other candidates for guidance — science, reason, liberalism, capitalism — just don’t deliver what is ultimately needed. “What other symbolic form,” he queries, “has managed to forge such direct links between the most universal and absolute of truths and the everyday practices of countless millions of men and women?”

Eagleton acknowledges that the links forged are not always benign — many terrible things have been done in religion’s name — but at least religion is trying for something more than local satisfactions, for its “subject is nothing less than the nature and destiny of humanity itself, in relation to what it takes to be its transcendent source of life.” And it is only that great subject, and the aspirations it generates, that can lead, Eagleton insists, to “a radical transformation of what we say and do.”

Fish quotes Eagleton's delightful turn of phrase, "Ditchkins", for the atheist/liberal side of the God argument, referring to writers Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins.

And as for the vaunted triumph of liberalism, what about “the misery wreaked by racism and sexism, the sordid history of colonialism and imperialism, the generation of poverty and famine”? Only by ignoring all this and much more can the claim of human progress at the end of history be maintained: “If ever there was a pious myth and a piece of credulous superstition, it is the liberal-rationalist belief that, a few hiccups apart, we are all steadily en route to a finer world.”

That kind of belief will have little use for a creed that has at its center “one who spoke up for love and justice and was done to death for his pains.” No wonder “Ditchkins” — Eagleton’s contemptuous amalgam of Hitchens and Richard Dawkins, perhaps with a sidelong glance at Luke 6:39, “Can the blind lead the blind? Shall they not both fall into the ditch?” — seems incapable of responding to “the kind of commitment made manifest by a human being at the end of his tether, foundering in darkness, pain, and bewilderment, who nevertheless remains faithful to the promise of a transformative love.”

If you've got time for a reasoned argument about God, read God Talk. You may be enlightened.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Swine flu & first 100 days of Obamessiah's reign

I have consciously restrained myself from commenting on the current putrid state of politics because quite frankly what's going on in Washington, D.C., gives me the urge to regurgitate.

So I'll let Doug Giles comment for me on the outlines set forth in the first 100 days of the coming of the Obamessiah, which he aptly describes as the formation of The Obama Doctrine.

Conservative commentators are taking Obama to task, stating that Barack is putting us in a pre-9/11 mindset. A pre-9/11 mindset? I think you boys and girls are being too nice. Forget pre-9/11 . . . this is pre-7/11. And from a security standpoint, sooner or later his policies are going to make life in the US, let’s say, really inconvenient.

Now, should Charlie Gibson ever interview you non-Kool Aid swillers on TV and in the course of the interview lower his tortoise shell reading glasses and contemptuously ask you with that oleaginous look on his face, “So, Mr. or Ms. Conservative, exactly what is the Obama Doctrine?” From what BHO has said and done in the last 100 daze, you can tell Chuck’s tacky backside it’s this: The Obama Doctrine is the systematic emasculation of those aspects and entities that, heretofore, have kept us safe. It is the politically correct castration of our nation’s cojones, or tomatoes, or testicles or whatever you want to call ‘em.

Yes, according to our Gelding-In-Chief, everything is our fault, our strongest allies are to be dissed, bows are to be given to Saudi Kings, high fives go to Hugo, Ahmadinejad gets a bromance vid from BHO via YouTube, and talks are conducted with Cuba about burning a Cohiba with the Castro brothers. In addition, Obama’s administration says Israel is the pain in the middle east, the US should throw billions at rogue nations, we ought to nuke our nukes . . . all the while blaming everything on GW, telling the world Islam doesn’t spawn terrorists, and forbidding our interrogators to interrogate those who wish us dead. What’s next, BHO? A d├ętente with el Diablo?

Yeah, what I’ve deduced from Obama’s teleprompter is this: The Obama Doctrine is, essentially, that America sucks. Everything is our fault. And to go forward, we must castrate everything that has kept us secure, because, y’know, we wouldn’t want to continue to be safe and strong anymore, right?

Got it? Me too, and it ain't the swine flu that's making me feel queasy. God help the U.S. of A.

And in case you're feeling a bit queasy too, here's a rare bit of print being critical of the Obamessiah's "accomplisments" in the first 100 days from the The Chronicle Herald of Canada in the Novia Scotia News, of all places. It's written by Andrew W. Smith, a columnist in Oklahoma who obviously can't find a newspaper here in the states to print his commentaries. I'm astonished to find there's a newspaper left in print anywhere that isn't enthralled with Obama.
Smith writes "So here is a small selection of news on the most powerful man on Earth which has been deemed unfit to print:
•Obama’s first two major bills alone, the "stimulus" and "omnibus," cost nearly twice as much as was spent on Iraq over six years – $1.2 trillion vs. $650 billion.

•Obama abandoned his campaign promise of "a net spending cut," his first annual deficit – not counting bailouts – being three times the worst deficit under President George W. Bush.

•Obama’s objective in his first G20 summit – commitments to spend our way to prosperity with massive stimulus boondoggles across the G20 – was rejected out of hand.

•Obama’s objective in his first NATO summit – commitments to combat troops for Afghanistan from "our European allies," which Obama and his party imagined were ready and willing to fight if only someone "enlightened" like him were running things – was predictably refused, with some more European non-combat contingents offered as a token.

•Obama’s Defence Department announced cuts of $1.4 billion to missile defence, the day after North Korea test-fired its long-range, multi-stage ballistic missile.

•Obama’s economics were criticized by Warren Buffet, whose endorsement had been candidate Obama’s highest economic credential.

•Obama reversed the free trade Bush policy that had allowed about 100 Mexican tractor-trailers into the United States, which the Mexican government immediately used as an excuse to levy tariffs on 90 American goods amounting to $2.4 billion in U.S. exports.

•Obama’s "tax cuts for 95 per cent" turned out to mean $13 a week from June to December, to be clawed back to $8 a week in January – as compared with President Bush’s 2008 tax rebates of $600 to $1,200 plus $300 per child, which were notably scoffed at during the election campaign by Michelle Obama.
Maybe there's hope for the Republic after all. If not maybe we can flee to Nova Scotia.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Sig P229 shines at the range, ready for prime-time

What's the most fun you can have with your clothes on? Shooting .357 Sig pistols is right there at or near the top of my list. So in addition to taking my brand-spanking-new Sig P229 SAS Gen2 .357 Sig pistol to the range for its debut, I also packed my two S&W M&P .357 Sig pistols, compact and full-size (or in most other pistol makers formulations, compact and subcompact).

And I took my Charter Patriot .327 Fed. Magnum along for more fun with a couple of boxes of .32 S&W Long wadcutters to take a break between shooting hot .357 Sig loads.

I started off with the P229 naturally as the new kid on the block. First shot with the P229 was smack dab in the center of a full-size blueman target at 10 yards offhand. Precisely the same experience I had with the first round out of my Sig P226 full-size pistol, so I wasn't really surprised. Pleased, delighted, happy as a pig in deep doo-doo, but not really surprised.

It shoots like a dream with the Short Reset Trigger system, the SigLite Tritium Night Sights are easy to see in the daylight too and overall I just couldn't ask for an easier-shooting, perfectly balanced pistol in my favorite caliber.

I only had the one magazine supplied by Sig (you buy a pistol that costs just shy of $1K and they give you one mag. Go figure. But so does Kimber and several other pistol makers, so you just gotta get your own mags). So I reloaded a lot with my UpLula mag loader and kept shooting. Holes in the center of the blueman are from the P229. Then I fired a few mags from my two M&Ps at the head of the blueman. No jams, no slams, no errors, nothing but perfection from all three pistols.

Only problem is operator error. You'll notice that the holes tend to stray a bit right of center, where I was aiming. I'm a lefty and when I pull the trigger off-center just a bit, it pulls the rounds to the right. I gotta work on that. Pulling the trigger straight back without pulling it right or left is the essence of good pistol shooting.

Then I took a break from .357 Sig and shot a few loads of .32 wadcutters with my Charter Patriot. I hadn't tried the .32s with my Crimson Trace grips and was delighted to find the zero was only off a couple of inches low from where I set it with the Speer Gold Dot .327 Magnum carry loads I use.

After shooting hot .357 Sig loads, the .32 wadcutters were like shooting .22s. I've found it's good to lighten up with easier shooting in between rounds of higher recoil loads. Seems to keep me from developing flinches.

The .357 Sig loads I fed the Sig P229 ran a wide range but all were hot. I used hollow-points by Speer, Winchester and Cor-Bon and for range ammo, Georgia Arms Canned Heat FMJs, Speer CF Frangible and Winchester White Box FMJs.

The Sig chewed 'em all up and spit 'em all out without ever missing a beat. It's true what Sig says about their pistols, "To hell and back reliability." I've never had a Sig pistol jam in my limited experience shooting them. I plan to widen that experience as early and often as possible.

After the .32 wadcutter break, I loaded up the last of the range ammo for the P229 and launched it at an orange 8" bull on top of the blueman at the same 10 yards.

The Sig's Short Reset Trigger just begs you to shoot quickly and even though I tried to slow down at first and be deliberate to check the sights, after the first few rounds of the day, I found myself shooting faster and faster, as quickly as I could realign the sights and launch another round downrange.

As the French cop said to Bogey, this looks like the beginning of a beautiful relationship, me and my Sig P229 SAS Gen2. I shall be carrying her when I go back to work on Monday at the gun shop.

Now for a name. How about Sexy Sally? She's slick and smooth, quick and dangerous. And unlike some women I've known with those qualities, I think this one can be relied upon when needed.