Down With Power Audiobook!

L. Neil Smith's
Number 814, March 22, 2015

I don't know exactly what it is, but there
is something in democracy that selects for
the very worst in humanity: the craziest,
the most stupid, and the most evil.

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Salon and Silencers
A Rifles and Reason Presentation
by SeaWolf

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Special to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise

I love what I do for Rifles and Reason. I'm passionate about firearms and gun rights, and I love putting this information out to you guys so you can use it, either to share with others, or to learn something yourselves. A lot of the debunking we do is people who are just misinformed, or ignorant. It's not necessarily an antagonistic process. Then there's Salon. I'd call it my personal white whale, but that would imply some long standing rivalry and or competition, but this is a battle of wits and I refuse to fight an unarmed opponent... normally. For those not familiar with the website I would compare them to the notorious Russian propaganda engine Pravda, but that would be an insult to both propaganda and fiction. Managing to both be woefully uninformed AND completely sold on every piece of bullshit anti-gun propaganda you've ever heard of isn't new, I'm sure at least one of those "special" individuals is going to be in the comments section asap, they rarely have the size of platform that Salon does... for some reason. Does anyone actually know what the original purpose of this... was it a magazine? whatever this collection of dross is, is for? Regardless, we press on to spin the wheel of scary things that we should all panic about according to the anti-gun media! Today's winning subject? Suppressors!

Article link, now with the added bonus of not giving salon traffic! (turn your adblock on for extra fun)

So the article starts off with a beautiful opener, asking what all could make a mass shooter more dangerous? Well he already has his designed-for-damage rounds in his high-capacity magazines in his assault rifle! So shooting more bullets faster via a fully automatic, as opposed to semi automatic machinegun, or more time acquired by "silencing" each shot and giving these terrible killers more time to hunt our children. So the article starts as it means to go on, sensationalist bullshit, nonsense terminology and lots of fake blood spilled on every surface.

The article then moves to a quick overview of the American Suppressor Association, some jabs at the evil NRA and how they want to use suppressors to protect children of all the terrible things. The article then goes on to talk about how horrible it is to protect one's hearing, and mocks the NRA's valid standpoint that by suppressing the weapon, younger shooters won't be startled by the loud noise of a firearms discharge, and be better able to focus on safe weapon's handling. Oh I'm just quaking in my boots! What will those dastardly rogues at the NRA do next? Perhaps become one of the largest firearms safety organizations in the country? Will their tyranny never cease?

At this point it's almost pointless to go point by point with the article because Zaitchik, despite an oddly well researched history lesson about silencers has departed our reality and has gone what I like to call Full Hollywood. Despite his copious research on the history of silencers, the author focuses his attention on not real applications, or even common ones, but on the cinema, even casting the start of his more serious argument by calling it the tool of mafiosi hitmen. Really? The mafia? Come now Mr. Zaitchik, I'd say you can be more reasonable then that but from the rest of your article it's clear that you cannot.

It's very clear that the author of this "piece" of... I hesitate to call it writing, vomiting into a word processor perhaps? ...has never actually heard a silencer in use outside of films, or he'd know that silencers when not in a movie, aren't very silent, a far cry from the whispering "ssyyyt" noise he ascribes to a silenced MAC-11. The actual firing of a MAC-11, silenced or not, semi auto or not, is damnably loud, because the "bang" is not the only noise a gun makes by far for one, and for two, there is only so much you can do to make a controlled explosion quiet. The MAC-11 and 10 series in particular sound like a tumble dryer with a bunch of rocks in it mechanically speaking. While there are some remarkably quiet guns out there under the right conditions with the right ammo, outside of maybe one purpose built rifle from WW2 (the De Lisle Carbine for the curious) or a silenced .22 pistol, chances are if anyone's remotely nearby you will be heard when you fire the weapon.

Interestingly there's no comparisons to European gun laws evident in this piece, odd for a gun control article, as the graboids usually love to crow about how much more civilized those across the pond are compared to degenerate, savage Americans. Perhaps the comparison is omitted because in many European nations suppressors are legal or in fact required by law or by range regulations on public firing lines or out hunting, this is because one annoys one's neighbor's significantly less when using a suppressor and of course as the NRA notes there is significant health benefit for one's hearing. If you think about it, that's also of benefit to hunters in particular because you don't have to choose between not being able to listen for game or having to try and get your ears in before take your trophy shot, however I digress.

I also find it simply fascinating that before the regulation of suppressors, when you could buy them off the shelf at a hardware store with nary a thought, during the days of the very active and powerful mafia, as well as the prohibition era crime lords, Mr. Zaitchik doesn't treat us to an overview of the many crimes committed by people with silenced weapons, perhaps because this dearth of crimes simply doesn't exist. It never existed then and it doesn't exist now. It's still quite possible to get or make silencers with ease if they're desired, and I'm sure if there's a criminal demand for them, then there is a criminal black market for suppressors you don't have to make at home, which of course provides the usual bug bear with most gun laws, they don't really do much of anything useful.

Nowhere in this twenty eighth paragraph trainwreck of shrill shrieking does Zaitchik come anywhere close to providing a source or indeed actual statistics to back his claims of suppressors being dangerous beyond his dire predictions about near silent mass killers coming for American lives and examples quite literally straight out of too many movies. Which I suppose it appropriate because I remember Salon as an entertainment rag like "Us" and "People" magazine, the kind of drivel you only find in supermarkets and your dentist's office. As the article finally comes to an end, Zaitchik looses his final shot across the bow implying the NRA will be working to legalize hand grenades and machine guns next!"

In the case of the former, that would be out of the NRA's purview most likely as grenades are hardly anything to do with firearms, but in the latter... would that really be so terrible? One crime has been committed with a legally held machinegun since regulation began, a police officer murdered his wife with the Thompson submachine gun he had for work. Like everything else, this fear mongering is all bluster and no substance.

Grade: D-

Teacher comments: Alexander needs to stop doing all of his research on Wikipedia while watching marathoning Michael Moore and watching the "Jason Bourne" movies. There's a lot of potential there as a writer if he ever decides to put in some actual work and thought to his pieces.

Please call me as soon as possible to further discuss Alexander's classroom behavior and performance.

-Mr. SeaWolf

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