New personalized Virginia Plate

Hat tip to Musings over a Barrel.

Virginia has come up with a new “Stop Gun Violence” license plate option

When I first saw it, I feared that the money from sales of the plate would end up going to some anti-gun organization, but a Republican amendment to the bill earmarks the funds for mental health programs, which I think is a fine purpose even if unrelated to violence or any particular tool.

With that in mind, I’m sorely tempted to order one of these for my truck who’s plates expire next month.

Paired with another accessory I have in mind, I think it would be a worthy addition:

What say you?

Speaking of Ammo companies…

On the other side of the aisle from the principled stand being taken by Hornady, You have Vista Outdoor.

Vista Outdoor Inc. has been pressured for months by retailers that sell its other goods like Bell bicycle helmets and CamelBak water carriers, to stop manufacturing firearms.

The Utah company said Tuesday that it will be seeking buyers for its firearms manufacturing business, and will focus on products for outdoor enthusiasts. It will continue to sell ammunition, its biggest core businesses.

Really? You seriously think after throwing us under the bus that we’re going to continue buying your ammo?

If you own stock in Vista Outdoor, I’d recommend you sell. Immediately. Oops…too late.

Vista (VSTO)’s stock price fell 15% after the company released a separate statement online, where Chief Executive Officer Chris Metz said Vista “plans to explore strategic options” for Savage and Stevens firearms, as well as some non-gun brands, like Bell helmets.

Like Hornady XTP for self-defense ammo, CCI blazer has been my go to range ammo for quite some time…I especially like their .22lr offering. That’s OK…I imagine the other ammo manufacturers (like, say, Hornady) will appreciate a bit more business. I’m also partial to Alliant powders for reloading and CCI primers. I’ll use up what I have on hand, but there are plenty of alternatives out there. Probably the biggest sacrifice will be giving up Hoppe’s No 9. That’s been my go-to bore cleaner my whole life. Ah well…who knows, maybe there’s something out there I’ll find I like better that I’ve been missing out on all this time.

In case you are interested in a quick reference of brands I’m going to avoid, here are the brands that Vista owns:

Bushnell Optics
Weaver Optics
Simmons Optics
Millett Optics
Tasco Optics
Night Optics
Redfield scope mounts/bases
Primos Hunting supplies
Final Approach (FA) hunting supplies
Gold Tip Bows
Bee Stinger Bows
Blackhawk holsters and accessories
RCBS Reloading
Champion Targets and accessories
Butler Creek magazines and accessories
Uncle Mike’s holsters and accessories
Gunmate Holsters and accessories
Eagle Tactical accessories
Blazer Ammunition
Estate Cartridge Ammunition
Federal Premium Ammunition (includes American Eagle and Fusion)
CCI Ammunition and components
Speer Ammunition and components
Independence Ammunition
Force On Force Training Ammunition
Alliant Powder
Savage Arms (includes Fox) (for now)
Stevens Arms (for now)
Hoppe’s gun cleaning/lubricant
Gunslick gun cleaning/lubricant
Outers gun cleaning/lubricant
M-Pro7 gun cleaning/lubricant
Jimmy Styks Surfboards
Camp Chef outdoor cooking accessories
Camelbak hydration systems
Blackburn cycling accessories
Bolle Eyewear
Serengeti Eyewear
Cebe Eyewear and Helmets
Bolle Safety Goggles and Eyewear
Giro cycling/skiing helmets/goggles
Bell Helmets
Copilot bike child carriers
Raskullz child bike helmets and accessories
Krash child bike helmets and accessories

That’s the list. It’s quite extensive and giving up some of those products is going to hurt, but there’s plenty of competition out there and I have no doubt I’ll be able to find suitable alternatives.

By the way, this list came directly from the Vista Outdoor website.

I may come back and put them in alphabetical order, right now they’re grouped by product type which may make it more difficult to sift through. If there’s an edit to this post later on, that’s probably what changed.

Hornady gets it.

In response to the New York Comproller’s not so veiled “nice bank you’ve got there, it’d be a shame if anything happened to it” strong arm tactics to convince banks to discontinue servicing the gun industry, Hornady has opted to cease any ammunition sales to the New York government.

While it may not make a difference to New York, Hornady will not knowingly allow our ammunition to be sold to the Government of the State of NY or any NY agencies. Their actions are a blatant and disgusting abuse of office and we won’t be associated with a government that acts like that.

Hornady’s XTP Jacketed Hollowpoints have long been my go to round for self defense and I even buy the bullets for when I roll my own. They have several offerings that get very good reviews and I’m very happy with the performance of the XTP.

Since I’m a long time customer, I can’t exactly switch my business to them, they already have it, but what I can do is: 1) Recommend them to others, which I will…adamantly…hence this post and 2) Stock up. Looks like it’s time to invest in precious metals like lead and copper. You can never have too many bullets on hand, and as an added bonus, when properly stored, they never go bad.

Now if that evil NRA that controls the entire gun industry in the US (trust me, I know it’s true, I read it in the New York Times) could get all ammo, gun and accessory manufacturers to follow suit, we could put these petty attempted power grabs by even more petty politicians behind us.

What does an illegitimate lobby thwarting the will of the people look like?

It looks like this.

We know who supports the NRA. You can see NRA stickers on car windows even in the bluest cities in the country. But who really supports the anti-gun political network? You’ll need to spend hours sorting through paperwork, following the trail, comparing addresses and researching names, to even get a hint.

That’s what an illegitimate lobby thwarting the will of the people really looks like.

With apologies to Jeff Foxworthy:

You know your state sucks when…

…the souvenir shops in the largest airport in your state…

…only sell souvenirs from a city in a different state.

I was in both Terminals A and C of the Newark International airport and there was not a New Jersey or Newark hat, t-shirt or coffee mug to be found.

Not that I would have wanted one had I found one…the absence was just striking to me. It’s the only airport I’ve ever been in (and I’ve been in a LOT of airports) that didn’t have some sort of memorabilia from…well…the location of the airport.

Prime example of Media Malfeasance

Headline:

Man charged after Heights party-goer shot to death while wearing bulletproof vest

Really? BulletPROOF?

A Rosenberg man has been charged with manslaughter in the shooting death of another man wearing a bulletproof vest at a party in the Heights, Houston police said.

Officers were dispatched early Sunday to a garage apartment in the 300 block of West 23rd, where a man had been shot in the chest. Paramedics pronounced the man him(sic) dead at the scene.

Um…not so much.

Gee, I wonder where [media] the idiot [hollywood] could have gotten the idea [media] that a bullet resistant [hollywood] vest is actually bulletproof?

By the way…the trigger puller was arrested for felon in possession as well as for, well, shooting someone…but it’s obviously the NRA’s fault because if we pass one more law and make it even more illegaler than the 3 felonies (minimum) they were already committing, that would have prevented this tragedy, or something.

Dear Delta

I have been a faithful patron of Delta for many years, am a Silver Medallion member, and have always felt welcomed and appreciated; however after recent events I no longer feel that way.

Following the tragedy in Florida, a vocal minority pointed fingers at the NRA, blaming an organization of over 5 million people for the act of one unbalanced individual. The fact is that the NRA has consistently advocated for current laws to be enforced vigorously in order to prevent tragedies like what occurred in Florida from happening. The NRA’s urgings have obviously fallen on deaf ears as the enforcement failures at multiple levels of government increasingly come to light.

In spite of that this vocal minority has managed to convince Delta to rescind an offer for discounted fares to the annual meeting.

Delta knew the NRA’s positions and politics before extending the offer of discounts, the NRA has never kept it’s positions secret. Nothing has changed in the NRA’s positions or policies since the tragedy, yet Delta found it advisable to rescind the offer of discounted fares.

The only conclusion I can draw is that Delta agrees with the vocal minority and places the blame for this tragedy on NRA members, of which I am one.

Therefore, short a convincing explanation, sincere apology and reversal of this decision, I cannot, in good conscience, continue to patronize a business that views me in such a negative light.

This action is not without sacrifice on my part. In my line of work, I tend to travel quite a bit. Perhaps not as much as some, but much more than the average person. I have several long trips in the offing, including at least one trip to Germany and three trips to Honolulu this year (during one of which I plan to take my wife). It is a shame that I will have to fly on an airline that provides (in my view) inferior service and will have to eschew the loyalty miles I’ve built up to this point, but my conscience will not allow me to patronize a business that would impugn me and my associates in such a way.

[update]
I just bought the tickets for my first trip to Hawaii for the year. Cost over $1000. Guess which airline didn’t get that money?

Fake Gun Interviews

From VCDL President Phillip Van Cleave, via e-mail
—-

February 20, 2018

Last weekend, while doing what seemed to be a regular interview, I discovered that a movie is being made with the intent to discredit gun-rights leaders across the country.

No, this is not a joke, it is real and we need to get the word out to other gun-rights organizations, gun-rights leaders, and prominent firearms trainers across the country and we need to do this FAST.

Back in 2014, alleged Hollywood sexual predator Harvey Weinstein said he was going to make a movie “that would make the NRA wish they weren’t alive.” (All gun organizations are the NRA in his mind.) And he was dead serious. Michael Moore has been attempting to discredit gun owners and leaders for years by tricking people and using creative editing techniques to make them look foolish or idiotic.

Who’s behind this effort isn’t clear, but they are EXTREMELY WELL FUNDED PROFESSIONALS. For example, to reel me in and to try to make me feel beholden to them, they laid out the red carpet, by providing luxury accommodations, limousine service, and providing a generous monetary allowance to cover meals and other expenses for two days.

They use psychological manipulation, as well as lies and tricks to put their victim into comedic situations that subject them to public shame, embarrassment, and ridicule. I believe the intent is to destroy reputations and even lives.

I did some detective work in the days immediately following the “interview,” and I managed to find out they had targeted at least one nationally known firearms trainer and I know there are more. They appear to be setting up near gun shows. I also found out they covered their tracks carefully to avoid revealing their true identity.

It started when VCDL received an email last week from a company called “First Freedom Television” to do an interview with an “Israeli security expert” on the “shared security interests of like-minded countries, such as the U.S. and Israel.” It went on, “Unlike the misguided position of American liberals, who aim to eradicate guns altogether, Israel has proven that universal gun training and widespread gun ownership actually leads to a safer society.”

I do interviews all the time, and this one didn’t seem to be all that much out of the ordinary.

On Sunday, February 11, 2018, I did the interview in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. About 5 minutes into the interview, my radar turned on big time when the interviewer was making claims about Israeli schools training selected children to use firearms from age 17 down to age 4 (!) as a last ditch effort in stopping a terrorist attack on a school if the teachers and security staff had been killed. The children would have codes to unlock secured firearms in such a case.

When I balked at 4-year-olds being able to do that, he showed me an alleged newscast video on his iPad. The text was in Hebrew, but with an English-speaking narration, talking about how a 4-year-old boy had indeed stopped a terrorist attack at his school. The newscast said that he killed two terrorists using his dad’s gun, which he had brought to school in his backpack to show a friend, in violation of school rules. Israeli Premier Netanyahu was touting him as a hero in the video.

While I’ve never been to Israel, I do know they have some serious terrorism concerns, especially at schools and other public gatherings. The way they handle some of their security can be very different from what we have in the U.S. But that news story just didn’t look right, and 4-year-olds can hold a gun and fire it with supervision, but not take on terrorists, and especially manage to shoot and kill two of them.

Because of this and various other odd things I noticed during the interview, I was now convinced that something wasn’t right. This wasn’t real and probably some sort of a set up.

I could only think of Hollywood’s threat. At a minimum, it could be a comedy which would play only in Israel, but it could be a more damaging attempt to make a “mocumentary,” by someone like Michael Moore, or, even worse, a Sacha Baron Cohen-esq “Borat”-type of shock comedy meant to be devastatingly embarrassing and humiliating to the victim in the crosshairs.

As the 15-minute interview terminated, the interviewer asked me if I, as an English-speaking firearms trainer, would help him make a “gun safety” training video for children of various ages. This had to be the “kicker,” I thought.

For better or for worse, I decided that I would play along with the scheme so I could find out who was behind this and where this was going. I figured if I was right about this being a set up, I could blow the whistle and get a warning out to the gun-rights community across the country to protect as many people as possible and maybe derail this attack. If it turned out to be nothing, then no harm, no foul.

We recorded for almost 3 hours using Airsoft guns as props. They even had a teleprompter!

I was right – it was a set up – and it was much worse than I could have imagined. If you’ve seen the 70’s movie, “The Sting,” it was much like that. It was a well-orchestrated, well-choreographed, psychological manipulation, with a production cast of at least 10 people, to slowly lead a person down the primrose path.

We went step-by-step with a ready, and seemingly logical, answer every time I balked at some crazy part of the training. They seemed to have thought of every thing that a person might question. All I can say is that these people were extremely good at deception and manipulation. And no matter how stupid the things the interviewer and I were doing (we were side-by-side the whole time), no one else cracked a smile or laughed once, and I was watching. The professional actors were keeping up the appearance that this was a serious project.

The end goal was to get the victim to make a “training film” teaching 3 and 4-year-olds how to shoot guns hidden in toy animals at “bad” people, to sing little songs and make gun noises during the training to make it “fun for children,” and even teach little kids how to shoot a rocket-propelled-grenade or a squad automatic weapon at an approaching suicide bomber vehicle!

It all sounds unbelievable. But everything was elaborately and expensively staged; every contingency planned for, with explanations that make unbelievable things seem plausible (fake documents and videos about how Israel handles security in their schools, for example). The interview moved along at a pace, designed not to give the “mark” time to reflect on where things are going. The craziness factor very gradually got more extreme, like cooking a frog by slowly heating up the water so he doesn’t realize what’s happening until it’s too late. It’s a con game, a sting, plain and simple.

I don’t know if they have other scenarios or they will use other company names to continue concealing their identity, but anyone doing an interview dealing with gun rights where they sense something odd should terminate that interview. Or, better, bring a recorder and tell the other party you are going to make your own recording of the interview. If they say “no,” then walk out. I am going to make that my own policy going forward to protect against any future fake interviews. BTW, they had me leave my cellphone in an office “because it might interfere with the recording devices,” but I think it was so I couldn’t take any photos of them or make any video or audio recordings on that phone.

In the end we played each other and I confirmed what I feared this was all about. Sadly for me, I’m sure I’m going to be in whatever crazy film finally comes out, looking really stupid and, just as sadly, I’ll probably be in good company. A few of us will no doubt get hammered, but if we can get the word out IMMEDIATELY, we might be able to save the reputations of many other good people.

Finally, looking at the possibilities and what I saw while making the “training film,” I’m betting this is going to end up being a “Borat”-style film and it’s going to be vicious on the victims.

Please share this alert far and wide.

Philip Van Cleave
President
Virginia Citizens Defense League

BOLO

I’m sad to report that while My wife and I were on vacation, on Monday, our house was broken into. My gun locker was broken into and many of my guns were stolen.

The real issue is that they stole several antique guns that were family heirlooms and cannot be replaced. The frustrating thing is that those guns aren’t useful to criminals and aren’t worth much money, but are of infinite sentimental value to me.

Of course I have the “It’ll never happen to ME” syndrome and I don’t have serial numbers or pictures of all the guns, but I’m going to post a list of the guns and the serial numbers and pictures I have. During your travels at gun shows, flea markets and gun shops, please keep a lookout for any of these guns and if you see any of them, please let me know, or contact the Norfolk Police Department. The case number is 160815000129.

1. Make/Model: Springfield Model 67
Type: Pump Shotgun
Caliber: 12 Ga
Serial: Unk
Description/Notes: Blued barrel and receiver, blond (light colored) stocks. Inoperable: action does not cycle correctly causing shells to hang as they enter the chamber, also firing pin is worn and rarely hits the primer hard enough to fire shells.

No Picture

2. Make: Ball & Williams Carbine
Type: Single Shot Ballard Drop Block Carbine rifle
Caliber: .54 Rim Fire
Serial: 324
Description/Notes: Civil War era carbine, ballard drop block (lever) action, blued barrel and receiver with some rust and pitting, dark wood stocks with a crack from the rear of the receiver into the buttstock. Inoperable

No picture

3. Make: Marlin Model 60
Type: Semi-auto rifle, fixed tube magazine
Caliber: .22 LR
Serial: Unk
Description/Notes: blued barrel and receiver, dark wood stocks, many scratches and dings, well-used rifle.

Marlin Model 60

4. Make: Mosin Nagant M44 Carbine
Type: Bolt Action Rifle
Caliber: 7.62x54R
Serial: KH5462
Description/Notes: WWII era Russian rifle. Blued barrel and receiver, dark wood stocks, folding bayonet.

Mosin Nagant M44

5. Make: Ruger KP-97D
Type: Semi-auto Pistol
Caliber: .45 ACP
Serial: 663-30922
Description/Notes: Stainless steel slide and barrel, black composite frame. Operates but has a distinctive “hitch” when pulling the trigger.

No Picture

6. Make: Navy Arms Remingon 1858
Type: Black Powder Cap and Ball revolver
Caliber: .44
Serial: Unk
Description/Notes: This is a replica of a Remington 1858 Black Powder percussion cap revolver. Blued barrel and frame, dark wood stocks.

No Picture

7. Make: Lancia Razzi Model 1900
Type: Starter Pistol
Caliber: .22 Blanks
Serial: Unk
Description/Notes: This is a blank firing starter pistol, not an actual firearm, but has the appearance of a firearm.

Lancia Razzi Starter Pistol

8. Make: Colt Double Action Frontier Model
Type: 6 Shot revolver
Caliber: .45 Long Colt
Serial: 41025
Description/Notes: This is a late 1800’s era revolver with a loading gate and shell ejection rod. It accepts black powder cartridges. Blued barrel and frame, dark wood stocks. Inoperable: The cylinder does not lock up so it has not been fired in over 20 years and would be unsafe to fire.

Colt DA Frontier

9. Make: Smith and Wesson Model 3
Type: Break top revolver
Caliber: .32 Smith and Wesson
Serial: Unk
Description/Notes: This is an early 1900’s era top break revolver that accepts black powder cartridges. The original finish is virtually gone and the gun is very rusty and pitted. Black plastic stocks. POSSIBLY Inoperable. Due to the condition, this gun hasn’t been fired in over 20 years. It would be difficult to find ammunition for, but may still fire.

s&w Model 3

10. Make: Springfield M1 Garand
Type: Semi-Automatic Rifle
Caliber: .30-06 Springfield
Serial: 3029993
Description/Notes: WWII era military rifle. Internal fixed magazine fed with 8 round clips. Parkerized (dark gray) barrel and receiver with dark wood stocks and leather sling.

M1 Garand

11. Make: Inland M1 Carbine
Type: Semi-Automatic Rifle
Caliber: .30 Carbine
Serial: 6250195
Description/Notes: WWII era military rifle. Removable box magazine, parkerized (dark gray) barrel and receiver with dark wood stocks and canvas sling.

M1 Carbine 3

M1 Carbine 2

12. Make: SKS M59/66
Type: Semi-Automatic Rifle
Caliber: 7.62x39mm
Serial: S-677703
Description/Notes: Highly modified Yugoslavian SKS. Removable box magazine, blued barrel and receiver, black composite stocks. Folding vertical front grip, Bipod, Scope, flashlight, nylon 3 point sling.

sks

SKS 2

13. Make: Ruger American Rimfire Rifle
Type: Bolt Action rifle
Caliber: .22 LR
Serial: Unk
Description/Notes: Less than 2 years old, pristine condition. Stainless barrel and action, gray composite stocks. Variable power scope. Removable “rotary” box magazine.

Ruger American Rimfire

14. Make: CMMG National Match AR-15
Type: Semi-Automatic Rifle
Caliber: .223 Remington
Serial: SA15919
Description/Notes: A2 style National match Rifle. DPMS upper receiver, Stainless Steel heavy barrel, Anodized (black) aluminum upper and lower receiver with fixed carry handle, black stocks, Jewell brand match trigger, fixed buttstock with “US Navy Marksmanship Team” sticker on the side. Free float forestock, national match (1/4moa) rear sights, National match leather sling. Lead weights in buttstock for balance.

NM AR-15

15. Make: CMMG M4 style AR-15
Type: Semi-Automatic Rifle
Caliber: 5.56x45mm
Serial: SA15918
Description/Notes: M4 style rifle. Del-Ton upper receiver, blued 16” barrel, anodized (black) aluminum receivers, flat-top upper receiver with Aim-Point red dot sight attached to rail, Adjustable rear stock, canvas sling.

M-4 AR15