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Member since: Fri Sep 8, 2006, 11:47 AM
Number of posts: 15,333

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An antigun editorial, a pro-pot article, and a question.

The first two are from the latest issue of Boston's "Phoenix" magazine. The question is mine.


...How can Congress fail to act in the wake of 20 children and six adults murdered by a lone gunman at Newtown's Sandy Hook Elementary?

At its long-awaited December 21 press conference, the NRA failed to confront the issue of assault weapons specifically and gun murders/violence in general (conference transcript available at nra.org). Even by its own tone-deaf standards, this enabler of mass mayhem remained brutally indifferent to the indisputable fact that the US leads the world in gun violence and murder, and that Newtown is but a heart-wrenching blip on the screen of terror.

As the NRA's hang-tough stance demonstrates, banning semiautomatic weapons and the large-capacity clips that make them even more deadly is going to be a more daunting political task than enacting national health care.

It is, however, time to smash the nation's gun culture. The way to begin is to restore common-sense meaning to the Constitution's second amendment...

Glad to see one gun Prohibitionist, at least, admit to wanting a culture war. I find the candor


Medical-marijuana caregivers: a growing need
Common Sensi
By ARIEL SHEARER | December 28, 2012

"Common Sensi" is our new series covering the local impact of a national cannabis revolution.

In his Oxford shirts and slacks, Gary still looks like the network engineer he used to be. But his current occupation is far from average. He lives in Maine with his wife, two older children, and nearly three dozen cannabis plants.

Gary is one of hundreds of medical-marijuana caregivers registered in his state, legally permitted to cultivate cannabis and sell it to up to five patients. As Massachusetts joins Maine and 16 other states in legalizing medical marijuana, there's much speculation about how our Department of Public Health will regulate dispensaries. But caregiver crops like the one in Gary's basement will be flowering throughout the Commonwealth by DPH's May 1 deadline.

Gary asked me not to publish his last name. He says he keeps his business on the DL, partly because of the social stigma tied to growing and selling marijuana, but primarily out of fear of being robbed.

"It's completely normal and legal [on a state level], but it's still a dark art," he says. "I still sing in the choir at church," he adds, "but my church doesn't know what I do."...

My question is this: How large would the collective aneurysm be at The Phoenix's offices
if some state voted to simply ignore Federal gun laws?

I think it would be a very large one, indeed...

FYI, I think the Federal ban on cannabis is idiotic and should be repealed forthwith.

Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Fri Dec 28, 2012, 11:12 PM (14 replies)

What if someone posted the names and addresses of Brady Campaign members?

The linked thread got me thinking of that very thing:


Newspaper Publishes Gun Owners’ Names and Addresses


Lots of replies saying it was a great thing, "sunlight is the best disinfectant", etc.

Then I remembered that the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence will happily sell you
a list of its members/donors


Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence - Donors/Members Mailing List

Founded in 1974 (Formerly known as Handgun Control) this public citizens lobby works for legislative controls and governmental regulations on the manufacture, importation, sale, transfer, and civilian possesion of guns. Activists are individuals who have responded by mail on a gun control issue.

Of course, you might not have suspected this was available if you had read the BC's posted privacy policy:


Email List Subscription
The Brady Campaign and the Brady Center use your email address to send you news and alerts that you have requested. When subscribing to this and future email lists, the Brady Campaign or Brady Center will collect and store the personal information that you provide. However, the Brady Campaign and the Brady Center will not sell your name or e-mail address to spammers or share it with unaffiliated groups.

I'm thinking that to purchase that list and update it would run around $10K, given that a
prospective purchaser would have to doublecheck the list and purge incorrect entries.
If I had the money to do so, I'd be mighty tempted to do just that-sauce for goose, gander, etc...

Let's see how many here are as dismissive of the privacy of the people they agree
with v. that of people they don't like

Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Wed Dec 26, 2012, 01:05 AM (36 replies)

California Megaflood: Lessons from A Forgotten Catastrophe


A 43-day storm that began in December 1861 put central and southern California underwater for up to six months, and it could happen again

By B. Lynn Ingram

Geologic evidence shows that truly massive floods, caused by rainfall alone, have occurred in California every 100 to 200 years. Such floods are likely caused by atmospheric rivers: narrow bands of water vapor about a mile above the ocean that extend for thousands of kilometers.

The atmospheric river storms featured in a January 2013 article in Scientific American that I co-wrote with Michael Dettinger, The Coming Megafloods, are responsible for most of the largest historical floods in many western states. The only megaflood to strike the American West in recent history occurred during the winter of 1861-62. California bore the brunt of the damage. This disaster turned enormous regions of the state into inland seas for months, and took thousands of human lives. The costs were devastating: one quarter of California’s economy was destroyed, forcing the state into bankruptcy.

Today, the same regions that were submerged in 1861-62 are home to California’s fastest-growing cities. Although this flood is all but forgotten, important lessons from this catastrophe can be learned. Much of the insight can be gleaned from harrowing accounts in diary entries, letters and newspaper articles, as well as the book Up and Down California in 1860-1864, written by William Brewer, who surveyed the new state’s natural resources with state geologist Josiah Whitney.

In 1861, farmers and ranchers were praying for rain after two exceptionally dry decades. In December their prayers were answered with a vengeance, as a series of monstrous Pacific storms slammed—one after another—into the West coast of North America, from Mexico to Canada. The storms produced the most violent flooding residents had ever seen, before or since....
Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Sun Dec 23, 2012, 02:12 AM (4 replies)

Poll: Are all illegal drug users responsible for drug gang violence?

More than a few posts over the past week hold non-criminal gun owners responsible for
enabling criminal use of guns.

I was reminded of this by my memories of a certain Canadian ex-DUer that would
occasionally remind us that the Canadian wholesale cannabis business is dominated
by violent biker gangs, so those who chose 'hydro' instead of Mexican for ethical reasons
(as opposed to taste) were only fooling themselves.
Said ex-DUer was/is also virulently antigun.

(Note: this does NOT include those who use it for medical reasons and get their supplies
from legal dispensaries)

Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Fri Dec 21, 2012, 12:08 AM (21 replies)

Analysis of Marcellus Flowback Finds High Levels of Ancient Brines (w/ extra radium goodness!)


Analysis of Marcellus Flowback Finds High Levels of Ancient Brines

Dec. 18, 2012 — Brine water that flows back from gas wells in the Marcellus Shale region after hydraulic fracturing is many times more salty than seawater, with high contents of various elements, including radium and barium. The chemistry is consistent with brines formed during the Paleozoic era, a study by an undergraduate student and two professors in Penn State's Department of Geosciences found....

...The paper looked at fluids that flowed back within 90 days of fracking. The samples analyzed in the study come from wells in Pennsylvania, along with two from northern Virginia.

The analysis shows that the brine flowback had extremely high salinity that does not match the chemical composition of the solution put into the wells during the fracking process. Instead, the elements being released are similar to those deposited during the Paleozoic era, hundreds of millions of years ago.

Rose said the naturally occurring radioactive materials being brought to the surface after having been 8,000 feet deep were deposited with formations in that era. He noted that while much attention has been focused on the chemicals that are injected into the shale formation during the fracking process, also of concern is the release of elements such as barium and radium that have been in the ground for millions of years...

Lara O. Haluszczak, Arthur W. Rose, Lee R. Kump. Geochemical evaluation of flowback brine from Marcellus gas wells in Pennsylvania, USA. Applied Geochemistry, 2012; DOI: 10.1016/j.apgeochem.2012.10.002
Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Thu Dec 20, 2012, 08:52 PM (1 replies)

A list of who/what was to blame for the Newtown massacre.

I've seen every single one of these in the media or online

And damn near every person that has offered up their 'cause' is sure that theirs
is correct, dammit, and that anyone that disagrees might just as well have killed those poor kids themselves:

Wayne LaPierre
Every gun owner in the US
Gun Nuts
The Second Amendment
Anybody who doesn't support immediate repeal of the Second Amendment
Assault Rifles
Assault Weapons
Extended magazines
Detachable magazines
Scary-looking guns
Video games
Violent video games
Popular culture
Violent media
Doomsday preppers
The shooter's mother
Lack of male role models
Feminized culture
Lack of prayer in schools
Lack of God in schools
Karma: http://www.democraticunderground.com/12311649
Lack of armed teachers
The US healthcare system in general
The US mental healthcare system in particular
Psychotropic drugs
Big Pharma

That's all I can think of at the moment- If you've run across any others,
please include a link to same in the comments
Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Thu Dec 20, 2012, 06:28 PM (39 replies)

Make use of the NICS system mandatory, but open it to private gun sellers.

Use the carrot and stick approach to encourage use:

1) Civil and criminal immunity for those transferors who properly use it.

2)In addition to whatever penalties entail from not using it, make the illegal transferor
accessory before the fact for whatever crimes may be committed with the gun(s).

I suspect most opposition to this would come from A) FFL holders who would miss
the corporate welfare, and B) antigun types who feel this doesn't restrict guns enough.
Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Wed Dec 19, 2012, 01:30 PM (5 replies)

You might want to reconsider either your opinion of gun owners or your avatar...

Or both:

Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Wed Dec 19, 2012, 02:18 AM (1 replies)

A suggested read for those who seek a prohibition of guns:


Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Tue Dec 18, 2012, 09:02 PM (66 replies)

Any "War on Guns" will be delayed until 2015 at the earliest.

Because of the Republicans. They control the House, and have nothing left to lose
by saying no.

Most of them are in safe seats, so they won't buck the Teabagger line-they saw what happened
to Richard Lugar. They'll want their pound of flesh for any compromise at all.
Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Tue Dec 18, 2012, 02:53 AM (9 replies)
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