Thursday, June 26, 2014

Last Call For Don't Know Howitzer, Don't Know Whenitzer

This is either a completely ridiculous story about gun nuts treating a howitzer as a friggin' toy and lobbing a shell into somebody's house 3 miles away, or a case of custom critical courier delivery methods gone horribly wrong.

An Oklahoma home was damaged last weekend by a howitzer artillery shell fired from a gun range three miles away. 
The artillery shell – which is 14.5 inches long and 3.5 inches across – crashed through an exterior wall, hit the ceiling, and damaged another wall while homeowner Gene Kelley and his wife were in another room, reported KOAM-TV
“It’s unbelievable,” Kelley said. “Unless you were here to see it or see the pictures I’ve got, you would not believe how huge this thing is.”

No one was hurt, but Kelley said the damage could have been worse if the shell had not hit a tree limb and then the ground before striking his Wyandotte house.

Unless you're a Mythbuster and doing a myth on howitzers or something, why are you allowed to fire one of these when it can go, I dunno, three miles (and could have gone a lot further?)  Were people warned or anything beforehand?

The shell was fired from a 105mm howitzer at the Oklahoma Full Auto Shoot and Trade Show, but the gun range owner insists the historic weapon was safely fired by professionals in a downward projection. 
“It was not on a level plane, but on a downward trend, pointed downhill in the bottom of a valley,” said Mike Friend, Owner of Fast Machine Gun Shoot. “For that thing to rise and go far northwest of the range, it’s just unheard of.”

Max range on a 105mm howitzer is what, 6-7 miles or thereabouts?  So yeah, did this guy warn anyone in the area?  This seems like totally reasonable behavior and not weapon fetishist stuff or anything, you know?

I appreciate the skill and training that it takes to operate a field gun like this, but if you put a shell in a dude's living room in a freak accident, there's a problem somewhere.  Get a bigger range or something next time, guys.  Or better yet, leave the 105mm boom-boom at home.

More GOP Minority Outreach, Post-McDaniel Edition

Conservatives are fuming over the loss of Mississippi Tea Party darling Chris McDaniel to GOP Sen. Thad Cochran in Tuesday's GOP primary runoff, and really all they know about why McDaniel lost is that black people were allowed to vote and that kind of thing clearly has to be stopped.  El Rushbo led the charge...

Some conservatives aren't happy that their preferred candidate, state Sen. Chris McDaniel (R) lost to Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS) in the runoff of the GOP primary for U.S. Senate in Mississippi. Many tea party types are openly speculating foul play and that Democrats and black voters were involved. Take Rush Limbaugh who wondered if Cochran's campaign slogan in Mississippi over the last few days was "Uncle Toms for Thad."

"I wonder what the campaign slogan was in Mississippi the past few days, 'Uncle Toms for Thad'? Because I thought it was the worst thing you could do as an African American, vote for a Republican. The worst thing you could do," Limbaugh said on Wednesday. "But somehow they were made to believe that voting for old Thad would be fine and dandy. And why? Because they were told Thad's done a lot for black people in Mississippi. Must be the first time they were told that."

 As a result, neighboring Alabama is calling for immediate laws to close that state's primaries.

The chairman of Alabama's Republican Party fears that Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran's (R) triumph Tuesday over a tea party primary challenger could have a ripple effect on runoff elections in his state unless party registration is implemented.

"I think what happened in Mississippi last night definitely sends a strong signal to us in Alabama that until we have party registration that same kind of thing could happen here in our state," Chairman Bill Armistead said, as quoted by

And Moose Lady offered some more Authentic Frontier Gibberish.

"When an election is questionable, with potential legal violations, politics MUST be put aside and the irregularities MUST be fully investigated," Palin wrote on Facebook. "Regardless of party, we owe it to voters and to democracy within our Republic. The integrity of the vote speaks directly to the integrity of those who serve and the trust we ask the American public to put in our institutions."

To recap, the "irregularities" that Sarah Palin and others are screaming about being illegal is "black voters voting in an open primary to defeat a Tea Party candidate."  This is apparently against some sort of law somewhere that we just made up, and dammit, we have to be collectively punished by Republicans.

The fact that Mississippi is 38% African-American, nearly three times the national average, simply didn't occur to conservatives when it came to a state with an open primary system.  The real problem Republicans have with black voters is apparently when we are actually are allowed to vote.  Republicans want to resolve that little problem, and fast.

Just a reminder too that a year ago this week, the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act.  You're insane if you think today's Republican party will ever lift a finger to restore it. Because remember, Chief Justice Roberts assured us that racism is over in America when it came to voting, as evidenced by the reaction in Mississippi this week.


This Week In "What Domestic Terrorism Problem?"

I can't imagine why the state of New York would want to keep an eye on a group of law enforcement officers and military personnel, trained in the use of deadly force, who openly advocate ignoring state and federal laws they don't like.

An official with New York’s Oath Keepers organization denied the group held “far-right, anti-government views,” and then called on law enforcement officers to disobey orders and join them in their fight against socialist tyranny. 
John Wallace, vice president of the state’s Oath Keepers group, cited an alleged New York State Intelligence Center counterterrorism bulletin reportedly leaked to InfoWars that linked the organization and similar groups to the recent shootings of law enforcement officers by extremists. 
Wallace complains that the document, which has not been confirmed as legitimate, based its conclusions on news reports by “left-wing” and “communist” organizations such as the New York Times, Huffington Post, and CNN.

“What the state of New York has done, used left wing publications, organizations to identify the targets that they want to eliminate and put pressure on so that we stop doing what we’re doing,” Wallace said. “How can you be in favor of the Constitution, how can you take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution and be a patriot, and be somehow put on a terrorist list made up and manufactured by basically communist organizations?”

I dunno, I'm gonna go with "openly advocating the direct disobeying of orders and state and federal laws while being an law enforcement officer."  No, this guy is totally stable, and we should reward him with extra points on his frequent gun and ammo loyalty card when making purchases for the Second Civil War.

Meanwhile, in Nevada, our friends at Bundy Ranch are still hanging out and being jerkbags, and they've discovered that since we don't actually have a domestic terrorism problem in the US, nobody's really going to care if they just choose to ignore laws they don't like, either.

Videos posted online show the scofflaw rancher’s supporters explaining their ideologies in lengthy lectures, such as one posted earlier this month that shows “private attorney general” Jeff Ball explaining that laws don’t apply to individuals if they understand how to rebut them. 
“I want to give you guys the basic chain of command, all right?” said Ball, of the Citizens Action Network. “Up at the top of this tree is the creator, whoever your creator is, that’s where the creator’s at. The one below that is you, okay? So your original contract was with the creator.”

Seems totally legit.

Ball argued that Americans had loaned out their sovereignty to public servants, but they reserve the right to take it back. 
So when that governor, that sheriff, doesn’t do his job, we can go take them out of office,” he said. “We don’t have to wait for an election.”

Maybe these Bundy Ranch guys should hook up with the New York Oath Keepers.  Is it just me, or is this totally a situation where the Gatekeeper is looking for the Keymaster so they can open up Gozer the Gozerian's World O' Guns Emporium and Shooting Range?


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