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BATFE's Increasingly Rogue

BATFE's Increasingly Rogue

The lamestream media told you:

Project Gunrunner appears to be turning into Project Gunwalker, as the BATFE seems to have let hundreds and possibly thousands of big deadly black high-capacity assault weapons walk out of U.S. gun stores and directly to Mexican drug cartels. Possibly for as long as a year, the controversial bureau has apparently been getting stores to cooperate, in an upside-down effort to stop guns from getting into Mexico from the U.S. The agency is predictably stonewalling, especially now that one of the walked guns was used to kill a federal agent.

The Uninvited Ombudsman notes however that:

While this travesty from a rogue federal bureau is getting news, its more serious efforts to ban guns for Americans is operating under the radar. Unmentioned in the "news" reports is the fact that, the stronger the drug cartels get, the more work and job security the heavily armed agency has. No one in a position of authority is suggesting BATFE is arming drug cartels as a way to justify the agency's existence or increase its staff and funding at taxpayer expense.

Although Mr. Obama's fingerprints are nowhere to be found directly, underlings operating under his authority have been incrementally impeding the flow of decent and wholesome firearms to the public. This is something they could not likely do without his approval at some level. The staged, long-term, grand-scale straw purchases the agency has apparently orchestrated have been used to propose costly and time-consuming new regulations on firearms dealers, in the form of multiple sales reports. But that's just a coincidence, agency insiders claim.

Of a more serious nature, the agency has changed operating policies and import definitions without a change in law, regulation or any visible authority to do so. The Firearms Import/Export Roundtable (FAIR) Trade Group has filed suit to stop what appears to be powers exercised without any basis in law. Quoting from FAIR's press release, ATF stands accused of "arbitrarily changing interpretation of federal law regarding the importation of certain firearm barrels." The announcement continues:

"ATF reversed years of statutory interpretation of the Gun Control Act and is acting in conflict with published implementing regulations... ATF chose to reverse course 37 years after the GCA was passed and 18 years after the last amendments to the law. No underlying justification has been offered for ATF's decision to affirmatively reverse a published regulation to the detriment of the industry...

"FAIR is concerned the ATF is increasingly acting without regard to statutory obligations to the detriment of firearms collectors, sport shooters and enthusiasts..." The barrels in question are for sporting firearms and replacements for legally owned firearms. These small steps combine to present an ever tougher situation for firearms owners. FAIR also points out that ATF is fighting, despite its obligation to do the opposite, to allow U.S-issued M1 carbines into the country. More info: FAIR Trade Group at (202) 296-2573.

Why do we shoot?

By Special Guest Columnist Barrett Tillman

Prolific author and friend Barrett Tillman pondered the joy of shooting and came up with satisfying, heart warming, intellectually revealing insight. These ideas will resonate with shooters, and likely be incomprehensible to the gun averse. He conducted an informal survey, to add to his own ruminations, and found:

One important factor emerged early: concentration. As one national champion said, "When I'm shooting I can't think about anything else. I have to focus on what I'm doing, and that's relaxing for me." Any serious marksman agrees: mortgages, appointments, and politics simply vanish for the duration of the shot or series of shots. Shooting is, therefore, relaxing.

"But," exclaim the anti-gunners, "so is golf or tennis or tiddlywinks." Which may be true, as shooting holds some of the attraction found in other accuracy games, but there's a sensory difference: "Like golf except louder," according to a Florida pistol competitor. An Arizona attorney agrees: "The stronger the stimulus the stronger the response." Another Arizonan flatly explains, "I like recoil."

Others cited less tangible reasons, such as the California instructor who eloquently replied, "I enjoy the rich history that goes with skill at arms, as well as appreciating the engineering genius that gave birth to these artifacts. My involvement in shooting makes me feel part of the continuum of history and gives me a greater appreciation of the deeds of historical figures."

However, two key factors emerged from the poll: distance and control.

Shooting has to do with action at a distance: "You do something here, something happens over there," says a civilian marksman. A military professional agrees: "Man is a control freak. Not only does he want to be in control of himself, but also over everything he can manage… even at extended ranges."

Control -- especially self control -- is a recurring theme. A Marine sergeant explained, "I think it has to do with man overcoming and controlling the forces or laws of nature. Taking that a step deeper, I'm sure some would say that it all boils down to control."

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About the Author

  • Freelance writer Alan Korwin is a founder and past president of the Arizona Book Publishing Association. With his wife Cheryl he operates Bloomfield Press, the largest producer and distributor of gun-law books in the country. Here writing as "The Uninvited Ombudsman," Alan covers the day's stories as they ought to read. Read more.

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