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L. Neil Smith's
Number 684, August 19, 2012

"Stand Down!"

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Rumors of War
by L. Neil Smith

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Attribute to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise

Unless you've been doing wall paintings in a Spanish cave, you'll be aware that earlier this year, the federal Department of Homeland Security has ordered 450,000,000 rounds of hollowpoint .40 S&W pistol ammunition. Look at that number again: four hundred fifty million. That's half again the population of the United States. Or, the way these goons usually shoot, almost enough to kill a million peole.

For the non-ballistically minded among my readers, .40 S&W is a lot different from the nine millimeter (9mm) cartridge issued by the military for its Beretta 92F (or M9) and other weapons. It also differs from the .45 Automatic Colt Pistol (.45 ACP) cartridge used by the military from 1911, through two world wars, Korea, and Vietnam until the mid-80's when it was replaced by the European cartridge. .45 ACP is far from dead, however; the Marines have just spent $22,500,000 for a new batch of 1911 pistols because the 9mm just doesn't cut the mustard.

But perhaps I have digressed. .40 S&W has become the preferred item for "civilian" police and federal bureaucrats. In the right hands, out of the right pistol, it packs about the same power as a .357 magnum, but there are 15 to 18 cartridges in the gun instead of six. There are also stories floating around about other federal agencies acquiring obscene amounts of pistol ammunition, and one concerning 175,000,000 rounds of .223, which is what the M16 rifle shoots.

One hundred seventy-five million cartridges. Clearly, these people are gettng ready for a big dust-up of some kind. Toward the beginning of his ill-starred term in office, Barack Obama boasted that he was planning to create his own internal security force that would be just as strong as the traditional military. He appears to have kept that promise.

Some individuals have suggested these purchases are intended to soak up the nation's capacity to produce ammunition, in order to keep it off the shelves of gunshops. Trouble is, that's not how economics works. Increasing the demand drives the price up, initially, which acts as an incentive to enter the market, which increases the supply and drives prices back down again. Even Keynes would laugh in Obama's face.

So why are they doing it?

Let's set that question aside for the moment and consider another phenomenon, the so-called "New Black Panther" party. Friday's Breitbart carried a story with two videos. One was of an overweight young black woman threatening attendees of the Republican National Convention in Tampa later this month. The video is gone, now, but its message was simple: an attempt to make Republicans the fringe (frankly, I wish they were) instead of the quaint and silly gang she represents.

The other video was quainter and sillier, consisting of a bearded young man in a shapeless black raincoat and beret—even Will Smith couldn't make an outfit like that look good—exhorting his fellow ... whatever he reckoned his fellows to be, to start skinning white people and killing their babies. You can't be free, he insisted repeatedly until you've skinned some white people and killed their babies.

If a white person said that on YouTube, he's be in jail now.

Through it all, we saw a picture of the fellow brandishing a pair of double-action revolvers of two different barrel lengths. I couldn't tell what caliber they were, but I found myself thinking that if this was about Florida, like that other video, the poor sap is proposing to start trouble with his ridiculous six-guns in a state where every other little old Jewish lady possesses a semiautomatic and knows how to use it.

That was dumb enough, but these two kids, the fat girl and the guy in the Halloween costume, don't seem to understand what their part really is in the game. They know the government won't prosecute them for anything they do. They know the "other" side, the Republicans, are cowardly, stupid, and perhaps even complicit. But what they don't understand is that they're cannon-fodder, meant to start just enough trouble so that somebody shoots them, igniting a riot that the federal government can photogenically put down—with 450,000,000 rounds of .40 S&W and 175,000,000 rounds of .223—while declaring martial law, shutting off the Internet, and ordering everybody across the country to give up their guns (and any gold they may have lying around, as well).

Keep your eye on the Republican Convention. They've certainly tried everything else. They couldn't pass a law—and keep it passed -- that would disarm the Productive Class. The old reliable mass shooting just doesn't seem to work for them anymore, the way it did in the halcyon days of Charles Whitman, Lee Harvey Oswald, Harris and Klebold, and Nadal Malik Hasan. In this most recent round, to inspire new laws, they tried three times, all for nothing. It doesn't matter what they try to do about it now. Americans have obeyed their last gun law.

I wonder if there is a single individual left in this poor, battered country who doesn't understand that these spectacular public shootings are arranged beforehand to advance the cause of victim disarmament.

I wonder if there is a single individual left in this country who doesn't understand that Operation Fast and Furious was contrived to discredit what the anti-freedom side calls the American "gun culture", but what they know perfectly well is actually the Bill of Rights culture.

Stealing people's guns during a natural disaster like Hurricane Katrina only brought them another hurricane of legal grief. And so we finally come to this—what's intended to look like a race war, trumped up by white "progressives" using dopey black militants as tools.

Barack Obama thinks he can succeed where Charlie Manson failed. In fact, these ammunition orders need to be quashed by Congress, and any cartridges already delivered distributed equitably among the American public. While they're at it they can override Obama's order to halt the re-importation of those M1 Garands and M1 Carbines from South Korea.

That oughta provide plenty of homeland security.

There are also rumors out there that the military is getting tired of the man and are preparing to keep their oath to uphold and defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic. I don't know where these things come from, so don't ask. Just tell me this: what does it say about the condition of our republic when a scenario like this seems plausible, and the best we can hope for is a military coup?

L. Neil Smith is the Publisher and Senior Columnist of L. Neil Smith's THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE, as well as the author of 33 freedom-oriented books, the most recent of which is DOWN WITH POWER: Libertarian Policy in a Time of Crisis:
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DOWN WITH POWER was selected as the Freedom Book Club Book-of-the-Month for August 2012

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