Kentucky State Police record churchgoers’ license plates at Hillview in-person Easter service

Dozens of families attended Easter service at the Bullitt County church despite an executive order from Gov. Andy Beshear that prohibits mass gatherings in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. Beshear said Friday that anyone who participates in mass gatherings of any type during Easter weekend will be required to self-quarantine for two weeks.

The troopers also placed notices under cars’ windshield wipers that say, “This vehicle’s presence at this location indicates that its occupants are present at a mass gathering prohibited by Orders of the Governor and the Cabinet for Health and Family Services. As a result, this vehicle’s occupants, and anyone they come into contact with, are at risk of contracting COVID-19, a respiratory illness that can be severe and lead to death, particularly for older adults and those with underlying heart, lung, kidney and immunity issues.”

According to Beshear, the license plate information will be forwarded to local health departments, which will then present orders to self-quarantine for 14 days at the car owners’ homes. Failure to comply could result in further enforcement, the notices say.

“I don’t know whether they took our license plates or not; it don’t really matter,” the Rev. Jack Roberts said during Sunday’s service, which was livestreamed on the church’s Facebook page. “Church, I’ll just tell you something: If you get a ticket, if you get a ticket for being in church this morning, bring it to me; my lawyer said he’ll take care of it. It’s garbage; it’s just garbage. I took a picture of my license plate on the back of my car and sent it to the governor yesterday. I just said, ‘Save yourself a trip, right here it is. Ain’t no need in coming out.'”

During his opening remarks Sunday, Roberts acknowledged people who drove from Dayton, Ohio, and two women who drove from South Brunswick, New Jersey, to Kentucky to attend Maryville’s Easter service. Roberts also said that someone scattered “at least one keg, one box” of nails throughout the church’s parking lot before the congregation arrived for service.

Sometimes the clotheads at ATF manage to get their act together

Feds allow for drive-up gun sales to ease dealers’, buyers’ coronavirus worries

In a concession to the coronavirus, gun dealers can now offer their own version of take-out service.

The Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives, in new guidance to federally licensed firearm retailers, said Friday that dealers can provide drive-up or walk-up service to reduce health risks posed by the coronavirus.

The guidance was issued, the ATF said, in response industry questions about how business transactions could be restricted following the declaration of a national health emergency.

Licensees “may carry out the requested activities through a drive-up or walk-up window or doorway where the customer is on the licensee’s property, on the exterior of the brick-and-mortar structure at the address listed on the license,” the ATF said in a Friday bulletin.

Transactions may not be carried from “a nearby space” that is not part of the dealers’ property unless they are participating in qualified gun shows.

Larry Keane, general counsel for the firearms industry trade group National Shooting Sports Foundation, said Friday that the organization raised the issue with the ATF more than two weeks ago as dealers sought to navigate various government orders limiting business activity.

What gall.
I am impressed though, being audacious enough to ask for that much.

United Nations Wants 10% of Entire Planet’s Annual Income in Fund for Coronavirus Response

The United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, has announced the creation of a fund for addressing the global coronavirus pandemic — and he is simultaneously asking nations to contribute the equivalent of at least 10 percent of the annual income of the entire planet to a massive “human-centered, innovative and coordinated stimulus package” that would be administered at the international level. Although Guterres doesn’t state it explicitly, he seems to be connecting the new fund, which he calls a “dedicated COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund,” with the massive stimulus package plan, announcing both measures in the same press release.

If countries were to accept the plan, the United Nations or some similar coordinating agency would be given the equivalent of approximately 8.7 trillion USD, an unprecedented amount that would be 2,900 times greater than the UN’s annual budget of 3 billion USD.

The proposed plan would effectively place a global agency, presumably the UN itself, in charge of propping up the economies of the world during the coronavirus crisis, placing it in charge of 10% of global income.

Pandemic Exposes Dangers of So-Called “Universal” Background Checks

As the COVID-19 pandemic makes its way across the country, Americans are getting an important lesson in the dangers of placing a prior restraint on the exercise of a constitutional right. The vast increase in those seeking protection in the Second Amendment during this period of uncertainty has caused the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) and Point of Contact State background check systems to buckle. Worse, some jurisdictions that have criminalized the private transfer of firearms have also shut down access to gun stores or their state criminal background check system. This lethal combination of misguided policies has made it impossible for millions of Americans to acquire, or even borrow or lend, firearms during this moment of crisis.

In peddling so-called “universal” background checks, anti-gun activists and politicians claim such checks are instant, and therefore don’t encumber Second Amendment rights. For instance, according to Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) firearm background checks take about 90 seconds.

Gun owners know that for many law-abiding individuals NICS checks, let alone point of contact state checks, have never been instant. In the 2018 NICS Operations Report, ​the FBI noted that 30 percent of all NICS checks were not “instant determinations.” The document explained that 20 percent of all checks required some additional analysis to complete, while 10 percent were delayed for further research. The problem overwhelmingly burdened law-abiding gun buyers, as only 1.21 percent of all checks resulted in a denial.

The simple facts outlined in the annual NICS Operations Report have not been enough to shame gun control advocates into dropping their “background checks are instant” talking point. However, the recent experience with firearms background checks during the COVID-19 outbreak should be enough to put their false claim to rest for good.

On March 17, the National Shooting Sports Foundation summarized the state of NICS in a message to federal firearms licensees (gun dealers). NSSF explained,

According to NICS, there are delays in the system due to an astronomical volume of transactions over the last several days. While much of the NICS System is automated and yields an immediate “proceed” or “deny” determination, transactions that result in a delayed status require the work of NICS examiners to investigate whether the transaction should be approved or not. With daily volumes roughly double that of last year, the NICS team is unable to begin investigations on all delays within three business days, creating a backlog in the delayed checks.

Colorado, a state that criminalized private firearm transfers in 2013, is a Point of Contact State where the Colorado Bureau of Investigation is tasked with performing firearms background checks. According to the CBI, as of March 24, background checks were taking four days. According to a report from the Reno Gazette, in Nevada, a state that criminalized private firearm transfers in 2019, “the onslaught of background check requests has made it virtually impossible to get through on the state’s Point of Contact Firearms Unit phone line.​”​ Due to these states’ prohibitions on private firearms transfers, the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding residents are at the mercy of an overwhelmed government bureaucracy.

The situation is even graver in jurisdictions that, through a combination of laws that criminalize the private transfer of firearms and virus-induced shutdowns, have foreclosed the Second Amendment right to acquire a firearm.

On March 21, the New Jersey State Police issued the following message to Federal Firearms Licensees.

On Saturday, March 21, 2020, Governor Phil Murphy announced he is putting New Jersey in lockdown to combat the spread of coronavirus. Per Executive Order 107, he is ordering the residents of New Jersey to stay home, directing all non-essential retail businesses closed to the public. At this time, the order includes New Jersey Firearms State Licensed Dealers. The New Jersey State Police NICS Unit is directing the vendor of the NICS Online Application (NICUSA) to turn off the NICS Online Services for submitting NICS transactions by eliminating the “Request Form” button, effective 9:00 pm EST, Saturday, March 21, 2020. You will still have the ability to view the message board and the status of previously submitted transactions. This “Request Form” feature will remain off until further order by Governor Murphy.

New Jersey is a Point of Contact state where the New Jersey State Police are tasked with performing all firearm background checks.

In order to acquire a rifle or a shotgun in New Jersey a prospective owner must obtain a Firearms Purchase Identification Card. N.J.S.A. 2C:58-3d. requires that a background check be conducted before an FPIC is issued.

Likewise, in order to acquire a handgun, a prospective owner must obtain a Permit to Purchase a Handgun (PPH). The PPH is also issued pursuant to a background check.

Up until 2018, an FPIC or PPH holder could acquire a firearm from another private individual without further government interference. The logic being that the FPIC or PPH holder had already been thoroughly vetted by the government.

However, on June 13, 2018, Gov. Murphy signed A2757. This legislation added a background check requirement for every firearm transfer on top of the existing licensing requirements.

Therefore, with the March 21 change in state police procedure, New Jerseyans are not able to acquire firearms.

The situation is similar in Washington. In 2014, the state has criminalized the private transfer of firearms. RCWA 9.41.113​ requires that parties to a firearms transfer “shall complete the sale or transfer through a licensed dealer” pursuant to a background check.

On March 23, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) issued an order closing all “non-essential” businesses due to the threat of the Wuhan virus. The shutdown included firearms dealers. The governor’s closure order, coupled with existing Washington background check law has made it so Washingtonians cannot acquire or transfer firearms during this crisis.

It should be noted that New Jersey and Washington’s laws do not just require background checks on all firearm sales, but also on other types of firearm transfers. Under both state’s laws, a gun owner could not lend their friend or neighbor a firearm for protection during this time of crisis without first conducting a background check.

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the dangers inherent in laws that require government permission in order to exercise a constitutional right. Such laws make law-abiding Americans dependent upon the government’s ability and willingness to grant such permission – something many governments have been unable to ensure. This crisis has shown that Americans cannot trust the government to act as a gatekeeper on their fundamental rights. Therefore, Americans must jealously guard their right to privately transfer firearms without government interference.​

Department of Homeland Security includes firearm manufacturing, distribution, retail and ranges as essential critical services.

NEWTOWN, Conn. — The National Shooting Sports Foundation® (NSSF®), the trade association for the firearm and ammunition industry, is grateful for the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) inclusion of the firearm industry’s manufacturing, distribution, retail and range businesses as essential critical services that should remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic. NSSF has been working closely with the Trump Administration and DHS to convey the important role the firearm and ammunition industry performs for national security, public safety, and the ability for continued exercise of individual constitutional liberties and self-protection.

“We are deeply appreciative to the Trump Administration and Department of Homeland Security for recognizing the vital role our industry fulfills in our nation,” said Lawrence G. Keane, Senior Vice President and General Counsel for NSSF. “We have seen over the past week hundreds of thousands, even millions of Americans choosing to exercise their right to keep and bear arms to ensure their safety and the safety of loved ones during these uncertain times. Americans must not be denied the ability to exercise that right to lawfully purchase and acquire firearms during times of emergency. This guidance from the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) is crucial to governors and local officials as they craft the orders to preserve public health.”

The firearm industry continues to provide small arms to the U.S. military, even during times of crisis. The national security mission remains and U.S. Armed Forces, with rare exception, rely upon domestically manufactured small arms. Most law enforcement departments rely on local firearm retailers to supply them with their firearms to perform the critical duty of providing for community safety. Law-abiding individuals also rely on these retailers for the ability to purchase their firearms and ammunition. It is also where retailers are able to explain the responsibilities of safe firearm ownership and storage and new gun owners are able to access ranges to learn to safely handle their firearms.

Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce:
Ensuring Community and National Resilience in COVID-19
Version 2.0 (March 28, 2020)

Functioning critical infrastructure is imperative during the response to the COVID-19 emergency for both public health and safety as well as community well-being. Certain critical infrastructure industries have a special responsibility in these times to continue operations.
This advisory guidance and accompanying list are intended to support state, local, tribal, territorial and industry partners in identifying the critical infrastructure sectors and the essential workers needed to maintain the services and functions Americans depend on daily and that need to be able to operate resiliently during the COVID-19 pandemic response.
This document gives advisory guidance on defining essential critical infrastructure workers. Promoting the ability of such workers to continue to work during periods of community restriction, access management, social distancing, or closure orders/directives is crucial to community resilience and continuity of essential functions.

The following list of identified essential critical infrastructure workers is intended to be overly inclusive reflecting the diversity of industries across the United States.


• Workers supporting the operation of firearm or ammunition product manufacturers, retailers,importers, distributors, and shooting ranges.

“….never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”
Rahm Emanuel

“Never trust a politician of any party farther than you can throw them.”
Miles Fortis

DOJ Is Asking for the Authority to Detain You Indefinitely Without Trial

The Justice Department is asking Congress for the power to ask chief judges to detain people indefinitely, without trial, in “emergencies.”

DoJ isn’t advertising the request. Politico obtained some documents that detail the department’s request to Congress.

Documents reviewed by POLITICO detail the department’s requests to lawmakers on a host of topics, including the statute of limitations, asylum and the way court hearings are conducted. POLITICO also reviewed and previously  reported on documents seeking the authority to extend deadlines on merger reviews and prosecutions.

A Justice Department spokesperson declined to comment on the documents.

Trump critics would have a field day with these proposals. It plays into their darkest nightmares about Trump. And frankly, it sounds like most of these proposals wouldn’t pass muster in a Democratic-controlled House.

In one of the documents, the department proposed that Congress grant the attorney general power to ask the chief judge of any district court to pause court proceedings “whenever the district court is fully or partially closed by virtue of any natural disaster, civil disobedience, or other emergency situation.”

The proposal would also grant those top judges broad authority to pause court proceedings during emergencies. It would apply to “any statutes or rules of procedure otherwise affecting pre-arrest, post-arrest, pre-trial, trial, and post-trial procedures in criminal and juvenile proceedings and all civil process and proceedings,” according to draft legislative language the department shared with Congress. In making the case for the change, the DOJ document wrote that individual judges can currently pause proceedings during emergencies, but that their proposal would make sure all judges in any particular district could handle emergencies “in a consistent manner.”

What about habeas corpus?

“Not only would it be a violation of that, but it says ‘affecting pre-arrest,’” said Norman L. Reimer, the executive director of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. “So that means you could be arrested and never brought before a judge until they decide that the emergency or the civil disobedience is over. I find it absolutely terrifying. Especially in a time of emergency, we should be very careful about granting new powers to the government.”

Mind you, these would be permanent changes in the law. They won’t suddenly go away when the emergency is over.

Reimer said the possibility of chief judges suspending all court rules during an emergency without a clear end in sight was deeply disturbing.

“That is something that should not happen in a democracy,” he said.

I think many of us would agree with that. The ancient “liberty vs. security” argument notwithstanding, emergency powers should be wielded with enormous care and should always — always — be temporary. You don’t need much of an imagination to see where this could lead.

It’s unclear how serious DoJ is about advancing these proposals. The documents may just represent unlikely scenarios that would need to be addressed in a legal way. Perhaps DoJ lawyers don’t want to let a crisis go to waste and want to push for these changes while Congress might be open to them.

Regardless, I’ll stick with Ben Franklin: ” They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”


IRS extends tax filing deadline to July 15 as coronavirus spreads

The IRS is extending the federal income tax filing deadline to July 15 as part of a growing effort to stem the financial pain from the coronavirus pandemic, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced Friday.

The move gives Americans three months more than they normally would have to file their income tax returns for the 2019 tax year, without incurring interest or penalties.

This is what you get when you let the state get in the middle of the NICS check process, not to mention the opportunity it gives the state to form a registry.

Pennsylvania State Police background check system crashes

Guns and ammunition have been flying off shelves at Lehigh Valley firearms businesses, just as supermarkets and other stores have been stripped bare by Americans panicked by the coronavirus crisis.

“I think everybody’s running scared, that’s pretty much it,” Eric Koehler, owner of Eagle Arms Sports Shop, said Wednesday from his Upper Macungie Township store, blaming in part the COVID-19. “The markets are collapsing, the virus is here, and blah blah. It’s just too many things for people to accept at one time, you know?”

Friends Teragah Serrano of Bethlehem and Stacy Toro of Allentown were among those shopping Wednesday afternoon at Eagle Arms.

Serrano, who bought a 9 mm and a .38-caliber handgun, joked, “I’m getting ready for the zombie apocalypse.”

Pennsylvanians are buying so many firearms that on Tuesday they crashed the state’s system for instant background checks.

Maj. Gary Dance, director of the Pennsylvania State Police Bureau of Records and Identification, said “technology challenges” and a surge in requests took the system offline.

“Despite the downtime, PICS completed 4,342 transactions on March 17, compared to 1,359 transactions on the corresponding Tuesday in March 2019,” Dance said in a statement.

That represents a 219% increase from a year ago.

Jan Rogers Kniffen, CEO of J. Rogers Kniffen World Wide Enterprises, said firearms sales are up 50%, while ammunition is up 65% in the United States since the pandemic hit.

A sample of area firearm store owners in the Lehigh Valley indicates the region is following the state and national spike in consumer purchases. At least two store owners, including Peter Ratajczyk, president and CEO of 507 Outfitters in Easton, said they were too busy Wednesday afternoon to answer questions, and others did not return email messages.

Dance said transactions include background checks for purchases, transfers, evidence returns and license-to-carry applications.

State police said the server issue was responsible for the outage from 8 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday. A second outage happened 5-8:40 p.m., due to a backlog of requests.

“Pennsylvania State Police is working with its vendor to increase processing power to avoid future backlogs and will adjust staffing as needed to meet demand,” Dance said. “Rumors circulating on social media that PICS has been shut down as part of the commonwealth’s response to the COVID-19 epidemic are false. PICS is, and will remain, operational.”

The state’s instant check system is used by county sheriffs, police chiefs and licensed firearms dealers in Pennsylvania to determine an individual’s legal ability to get a license to carry firearms or obtain a firearm through a purchase or transfer.

Besides the opportunity for the state to form a registry, (naaaw, they wouldn’t do that would they?)  this is what you get when you let a state get involved in the NICS BG check process instead of having dealers do it on their own, precisely like the system was designed to do. When I had an FFL, I even had online access, as well as the phone number, to do the required check.

Colorado gun sales double; state trying to keep up with demand for background checks

DENVER (KDVR) — Gun sales in the last week have doubled in Colorado, according to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, the agency responsible for conducting background checks.

FOX31 and Channel 2 investigative reporter Chris Koeberl discovered more than 14,000 firearms were sold in just one week. About 7,000 guns were sold during the same time period last year.

According to Joe Oltmann, the owner of DCF Guns in Castle Rock, many customers are afraid what’s available today may not be tomorrow.

“The panic started with toilet paper, then moved to food. Then, obviously when people see bare shelves, then obviously they want to make sure they will protected if it gets any worse,” Oltmann said.

Many of the customers are first-time firearm owners who are learning how to use a weapon to protect themselves and their families. Oltmann says the dramatic increase in sales is something his store is prepared for and he admits business is good. However, he balances the benefit to his store and employees against the underlying cause and that gives him pause.

“The good part about this is that business is good for us. The bad part about this is I wish it wasn’t this good just based on the circumstances,” he said.

The FOX31 Problem Solvers also found the other fallout to all the guns sales is the time it takes for the CBI to conduct the necessary background checks on buyers. A couple of weeks ago, that would have taken about 45 minutes to an hour, with about 97% approved. Now, buyers will have to wait two to three days for the background check and final sale to be complete.

“The demand has created a current queue of nearly 5,000 checks awaiting processing,” the CBI said in a written statement.

Constitutional powers and issues during a quarantine situation.

The growing concerns about the coronavirus in the United States could lead to government officials considering isolation and quarantine as possible measures to contain the virus. So what does that mean in constitutional terms?

So far, people exposed to the COVID-19 virus have agreed to “self-quarantine,” or voluntarily remain in isolation in consultation with medical authorities. In Santa Clara, Calif., and San Francisco, officials have banned large gatherings. In New Rochelle, N.Y., Gov. Andrew Cuomo has established a “containment area,” while Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on Thursday closed down public schools in Montgomery County, a Philadelphia suburb.

But what happens if the federal officials or a state government needs to get directly involved in a situation where large population groups need to be isolated? Or what rights do individuals retain in border-entry situations?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (or CDC), state governments, and not the federal government, have most of the power to place people in isolation or quarantine under certain circumstances. But in some cases, federal and state officials have overlapping roles.

LinkList of Federal quarantine laws

The difference between an isolation and quarantine situation is important. Isolation separates people known to be ill from those who people who are not sick, says the CDC. Quarantine separates and also restricts the movement of people exposed to a contagious disease, but not yet ill, to see if they become sick.

In 2014, the Congressional Research Service wrote about quarantines and the federal Constitution when there were concerns about the Ebola virus. In general, the Research Service said the power to take quarantine measures is reserved to the states under the 10th Amendment. In 1824, Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall’s opinion in Gibbons v. Ogden drew a clear line between the federal government and the state governments when it came to regulating activities within and between states.

Marshall’s reasoning set the precedent that police powers are reserved to states for activities within their borders (with some exceptions). Those police powers include the ability to impose isolation and quarantine conditions. Marshall wrote that quarantine laws “form a portion of that immense mass of legislation which embraces everything within the territory of a State not surrendered to the General Government.”

The Research Service also noted that one trend in common today among the states is the “antiquity” of their quarantine laws, with many statutes between 40 and 100 years old.

To be sure, the federal government has important quarantine powers. Under section 361 of the Public Health Service Act, the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services has the power to take measures to contain communicable diseases from foreign countries into the United States and between states. The CDC acts on behalf of the Secretary in these matters.

Federal public health and welfare statutes also give the federal government authority to isolate and quarantine persons with certain diseases, based on an executive order issued by President George W. Bush in 2003. The federal government also has a seldom-used power to impose large-scale quarantines. For example, the federal government issued isolation and quarantine orders during the Spanish Influenza pandemic in 1918 and 1919.

But under the Constitution, individuals have rights in quarantine and isolation conditions. Under the 5th and 14th Amendment’s rights of Due Process and Equal Protection, public health regulations used to impose such conditions can’t be “arbitrary, oppressive and unreasonable.”

There are precedents where courts have ruled that states or local governments didn’t meet a burden of proof to justify a quarantine. For example, in 1900 courts ruled against the city of San Francisco when it tried to inoculate and then quarantine Chinese residents against the bubonic plague when the courts had doubts that plague conditions existed.

And there also precedents that authorities should provide confined people with an explanation about why they are confined and notify them they have a right to counsel and other constitutional provisions.

A current example of a federal quarantine order related to the COVID-19 virus on the CDC website outlines many of these principles for people arriving in the United States and “reasonably” suspected by the CDC of exposure to or infection with the coronavirus. Those quarantined have the right to a medical review and “to ask a federal court to review your federal quarantine, including any rights to habeas review.”

Also, the federal government does have an updated plan to cope with a national influenza pandemic. First developed in 2005 and last updated in 2017, the National Pandemic Influenza Plans deal with isolation and quarantine options if needed.

Of course, one final question is how can the government enforce isolation and quarantine conditions?

On Friday, The Wall Street Journal reported that people in Missouri and New Hampshire recently violated self-quarantine orders to attend events. Enforcing those orders is problematic, said one expert. “It really is pretty much the honor system,” said Polly Price, a professor of law and global health at Emory University, told the Journal. “Public-health people themselves can’t arrest someone or force them to stay somewhere, and they try to use that as an absolute last resort.”

Government agencies do have the power to take action if needed. For example, in Pennsylvania, violators of its Communicable and Noncommunicable Diseases code (Chapter 27 of Health and Safety Act 28) may face fines and imprisonment in county jail.

The National Conference of State Legislatures maintains a comprehensive list of state quarantine and isolation statutes, including penalties. Likewise, violation of federal quarantine orders can result in fines and imprisonment under Title 42 of the U.S. Code.

Thousands of people have obtained permits to carry loaded, concealed guns in public in D.C.

I’ve got a phone number for the widdle cry babies: 1=800=WAA-AAAA

More than 4,000 people have obtained gun permits from the D.C. police department to carry loaded, concealed firearms on the streets of the nation’s capital, according to data released this month.

Nearly 60 percent of the people approved for concealed carry permits in the last fiscal year reside outside of the District, primarily in Maryland and Virginia.

The thousands of licenses issued in the past three years are in stark contrast to the previous decade in D.C., before a set of court rulings required city officials to loosen restrictive gun laws. Most D.C. residents were not permitted to keep firearms in their homes, let alone carry loaded pistols in public, until a landmark 2008 Supreme Court decision declared an individual right to gun ownership.

The surge in permits comes after a separate ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit that struck down a key provision of the city’s law in 2017 that had required residents to show a “good reason” to carry a firearm outside the home.

In the months after the court decision, the police department began approving hundreds of permits. Before the decision, there were only 123 active licenses, and D.C. police denied 77 percent of applicants for failing to provide the required “good reason.”

D.C. police have since signed off on 4,808 permits, according to data the department provided March 5 to Council member Charles Allen (D-Ward 6), who chairs the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety. Permits expire after two years, and there are currently 4,147 active license-holders, according to the department’s records division.

Allen said he is concerned that the large number of people potentially carrying legal firearms in public puts D.C. police officers in a difficult position to distinguish between someone concealing a legal gun and someone hiding an illegal firearm.

De Blasio: Coronavirus ‘Is a Case for’ ‘Nationalization of Crucial Factories and Industries’

Leave it to the commie loving mayor to promote commie nationalization.

On Saturday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “AM Joy,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) stated that the coronavirus outbreak is a case for “a nationalization of crucial factories and industries that could produce the medical supplies to prepare this country for what we need.”……..

He added, “There should be a national approach to ensuring max — every factory that can make hand sanitizer should be on 24/7 shifts and the distribution should be go[ing] to the places that need it most.”


All Bars, Restaurants in Illinois to Close Their Doors for 2 Weeks Due to COVID-19 Concerns

I wonder how this might affect the ChIraq murder rate?

CHICAGO — All bars and restaurants in Illinois must close their doors to customers from the end of business Monday night through March 30, Governor JB Pritzker ordered Sunday, due to concerns about the spread of COVID-19.

“There are no easy decisions left to make as we address this unprecedented crisis,” Pritzker said Sunday. “As your governor I can’t allow the gravity of these decisions from taking the measures that the science and the experts say will keep people safe.”

Pritzker made the announcement during the latest briefing on the spread of COVID-19 in Illinois Sunday afternoon. Under the order, all restaurants and bars will not be open to the public, although employees can still go in. Drive-through and pickup services at restaurants will still be allowed.

US Regulators Approve Roche’s New And Faster COVID-19 Test.

Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche announced Friday it had received emergency approval from US regulators for a new and much faster test for diagnosing the deadly new coronavirus.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given the green light to commercialise the SARS-CoV-2 Test to detect the virus that has sparked the global COVID-19 pandemic, Roche said in a statement.

The test can be run in high volumes on fully automated equipment, Roche said, suggesting it could provide more results far faster than other tests available.

“We are increasing the speed definitely by a factor of 10,” Thomas Schinecker, head of Roche’s diagnostics unit, said in an interview with Bloomberg News………..

The new Roche tests, which will also now be available in markets that accept the European CE-mark certification, are run on Roche’s widely available cobas 6800/8800 systems and can provide results within 3.5 hours, the company said.

In a 24-hour period, the largest machines can provide results on up to 4,128 tests, it said.

Corrupt Mueller Gang Threatened to Throw General Flynn and His Son in Solitary Confinement if He Didn’t Plead Guilty to Lying to FBI

General Mike Flynn has now been harassed by corrupt members of the DOJ for more than three years.

He and his family have gone through hell all because he knew too much about the Obama Administration’s corruption and supported Donald Trump.

The General’s lovely sister, Barbara Redgate was on BardsOfWar podcast and gave an amazing interview regarding the challenges General Flynn and his family have had to go through since becoming a target of the Deep State. At the 13:30 minute mark of the interview, Ms. Redgate shared the following after listing a plethora of documents that the FBI and DOJ are withholding from the General in relation to his case.

Redgate says that shortly after the discovery of corrupt FBI Agents Strzok and Page’s texts, the Mueller team is believed to have gone to DAG Rosenstein to obtain permission to indict Flynn’s son. This is when the Mueller gang really put pressure on General Flynn. They took young Mike’s phone and computers and have never returned them to this day. At the time, young Mike had a 4 month old baby at home. Next she shares the following:

Barbara Redgate: Suddenly General Mike is threatened with public arrest and search of his phone. Public arrest of his son. Indictment of his son, and they were going to give him the Manafort treatment, which is put them both in solitary confinement.

At the 11th hour before General Flynn signed his plea agreement, at the last minute Special Counsel notifies the defense counsel by phone only that the electronic communications of one agent showed a preference [against] President Trump and the IG was assessing whether that constituted misconduct.

General Flynn’s attorney’s never told this to General Flynn so he thought that the agents who interviewed him in an ambush meeting in the White House believed he had lied. The entire interview is shocking and a must listen.

History of the ATF: How the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms Became Corrupt & Abusive

It’s unlikely that there is a single federal alphabet organization less popular among the readership of this website than the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. These are the people who gave us both the Siege at Ruby Ridge and the Siege of Waco. What’s more, they may well be engaged in an entirely unconstitutional exercise: monitoring and patrolling the gun ownership of law-abiding citizens.

There’s also a solid case to be made that the ATF is a rogue organization, the most corrupt of the federal alphabet agencies. This can be seen through a number of scandals beginning with Ruby Ridge, threading through the siege at Mount Carmel in Waco, and continuing to the notorious “Fast and Furious” scandal.

While firearms owners, weapons enthusiasts and Second Amendment advocates might have a special bone to pick with the ATF, we believe that all freedom-loving Americans should be concerned about the overreach, lawlessness and lack of accountability in this organization. Roman poet Juvenal once posed an important (and famous) question about powerful justice officers: Quis custodiet ipsos custodies?” – Who is to guard the guardians?

All told, there are over 20,000 firearms laws and regulations on the books at the state and federal level. Many of these contradict each other or are written with a lot of room for interpretation. Gun owners and gun dealers are easy prey for a corrupt and lawless federal agency that wants to twist its arms outside the bounds of the law.

It’s also worth considering what overreach and lack of accountability other federal organizations are responsible for that we don’t know about, simply because they do not have the same spotlight on them as the ATF – a reminder that the scandals mentioned above are just the ones that we know about.

We recommend reading this article in concert with our other articles on the ATF: WacoRuby Ridge and Fast and Furious. Each of these contains familiar tropes with regard to the ATF: Entrapment, “lost” evidence, a total lack of accountability, aggressive policing tactics where discretion would probably have saved lives, and a vengeful manner of doing business.

U.S. Supreme Court rejects challenge to ban on gun ‘bump stocks’

This case was less ‘RKBA’ as it wasn’t based on a 2nd Amendment argument, than about ‘Chevron Deference’ where the courts defer to bureaucraps when they tie themselves into a logic pretzel to come up with a regulation. And as I have just learned, this was a ‘only’ denial of cert for the preliminary injunction on the demand by ATF that bump stocks have to be destroyed or surrendered since they are considered contraband machinegun conversion devices, but whatever.

This provides more confirmation that the conservative side of the court probably considers Roberts the new ‘squish’ as it only takes 4 Justices to grant ‘cert’.
And that means among Kavanaugh, Gorsuch, Alito & Thomas they figured Roberts would side against them. Kavanaugh, Gorsuch have case history against ‘deference’ and Thomas has recently changed his mind and come around against it.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rebuffed a bid by gun rights advocates to overturn President Donald Trump’s ban on “bump stocks” – devices that enable semi-automatic weapons to fire rapidly like a machine gun – implemented after the 2017 Las Vegas mass shooting.

The justices left in place a lower court’s decision that upheld the Trump administration’s action to define bump stocks as prohibited machine guns under U.S. law.

The ban, which went into effect in March 2019, was embraced by Trump following a massacre that killed 58 people at a music festival in Las Vegas in which the gunman used bump stocks. It represented a rare recent instance of gun control at the federal level in a country that has experienced a series of mass shootings.

Numerous gun control proposals have been thwarted in the U.S. Congress, largely because of opposition by Republican lawmakers and the influential National Rifle Association gun rights lobby.

The Firearms Policy Foundation, a gun rights group, and other plaintiffs sued in federal court to try to reverse Trump’s action. The Supreme Court last year refused to block the ban from going into effect while the legal challenges against it were considered in the courts. The justices also refused to temporarily exempt from the plaintiffs in the case from the ban.

An Obama Holdover in an Obscure Government Arm Helped Cause the Country’s Coronavirus Crisis
Who really decided to bring infected people to the United States?

Two months after the outbreak of the coronavirus, #TrumpVirus began trending on Twitter. Why? Because it’s the only chance that the Democrats have of winning back the White House in 2020.

Saddled with broken primaries whose nominee, after a possible brokered convention, will either be a Socialist who admires Communists, a senile lecher who admires young girls, or a billionaire who admires power, the coronavirus is a much more effective candidate than Sanders, Biden, or Bloomberg.

#TrumpVirus follows in the footsteps of #TrumpHurricane which attempted to blame a natural disaster and local corruption in Puerto Rico on President Trump. And that just dusted off the smears and slanders of Hurricane Katrina and substituted Puerto Ricans for black people and Trump for Bush.

Not to mention the CDC for FEMA.

The truth about disaster relief and pandemic management is that it hasn’t changed much between administrations. The Bush administration dealt with SARS in much the same way that the Obama administration addressed swine flu. And the Trump administration is doing most of the same things.

That’s because the actual decisions are being made by bureaucrats based on existing protocols.

The best example of this was the decision to fly back infected American passengers from the Diamond Princess. This fateful decision helped spread the virus inside the United States.

President Trump had been told that nobody with the coronavirus would be flown to America.

The State Department decided to do it anyway without telling him and only made the announcement shortly after the planes landed in the United States.

According to the Washington Post, as unfriendly an outlet to the administration as there is, “Trump has since had several calls with top White House officials to say he should have been told, that it should have been his decision and that he did not agree with the decision that was made.”

Who in the State Department actually made the decision? That’s a very good question.

According to a State Department briefing, the missions were carried out by the Directorate of Operational Medicine within the Bureau of Medical Services. You might think that sounds like it would be part of HHS or NIH, but the Bureau of Medical Services is actually an arm of the State Department.

The Directorate of Operational Medicine is a part of the Bureau assigned to deal with crisis response with a $250 million portfolio and a lot of employees that almost no one outside D.C. ever heard of. At least unless you remember an event at which Barack Obama honored Dr. William Walters, the head of the Directorate, for evacuating Ebola patients to the United States.

“Now, remember, the decision to move Kent back to the United States was controversial.  Some worried about bringing the disease to our shores.  But what folks like William knew was that we had to make the decisions based not on fear, but on science,” Obama said.

By “some”, Obama meant, among others, Trump, who had been a strong critic of the move.

Despite Obama’s end-zone dance, the State Department had badly botched the Ebola evacuations.

Under Bush, the CDC had prepped an evacuation aircraft for flying out contagious Americans. The Obama administration shelved the gear because of the cost, and then failed to make use of it. The evacuation process led to the same infighting between the State Department and the CDC as now.

Dr. William Walters is still on duty. In 2017, Walters was boasting of prepping more Ebola evacuations even over President Trump’s opposition to the practice. And he was once again at the wheel now.

“The question was simply this: Are these evacuees?” Walters explained the decision to evacuate coronavirus patients to the United States. “And do we follow our protocol? And the answer to that was yes on both accounts.”

Consulting President Trump was not part of the protocol even on a major national security issue.

In a Congressional briefing, Walters boasted that, “the Department executed the largest non-military evacuation of U.S. citizens in its history. The safe and efficient evacuation of 1,174 people from Wuhan, China and people onboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan is a testament to the agility, proficiency, and dedication of our workforce to accomplishing our core mission – advancing the interests of the American people.”

And the triumph of the administrative state and its bureaucratic protocols over the President.

At a State Department briefing, Walters stated that, “The chief of mission, right, through the U.S. embassy, is ultimately the head of all executive branch activities.”

That is the problem. Right there.

Walters got his job in 2011. He’s a relic of the Obama era. That doesn’t mean that his politics are those of his former boss. But this is not about him. It’s about the reality that the White House doesn’t make many of the most vital decisions and doesn’t even know that they’re being made until it’s too late.

And what that means, beyond the politics of the moment, is that the people don’t decide.

You can vote one way or another and the real decisions that matter will still be made by the head of a directorate that is a subsection of a bureau that you never heard of, but that has a budget in the hundreds of millions, a small army as its disposal, and will follow whatever the protocol is.

This is how the country is really run. And that’s the problem.

The underlying problem with our government is that it’s too big to control. Voting in an election or even sitting in the Oval Office doesn’t mean you’re in charge. The problem goes beyond the current obsession with the Deep State. The real issue has always been the Deep Industry or the administrative state.

If the coronavirus becomes a critical problem in this country, the blame will go back to an obscure arm of the State Department, but it will never be placed there. Whatever happens a year from now, no one outside a small professional class will have ever heard of the Directorate of Operational Medicine.

The media will spend all its time bashing President Trump, Pence, assorted cabinet members, and perhaps the CDC, without ever drilling down to the facts, even though it has them at hand. The media’s rule of thumb is that natural disasters and disease outbreaks are always successfully managed by Democrats and mismanaged by Republicans. Katrina and Maria were disasters, but Sandy was a success story. The coronavirus is a catastrophe, but the Ebola virus was brilliantly handed by smart people who are handling the coronavirus response. But it’s different because the guy in the White House is.

The truth is that all of these were mismanaged by the same agencies, many of the same people, and by a government infrastructure that excels at drawing up big budget proposals, but is inept at solving problems when they actually emerge, and just follow whatever protocols will cover its collective asses…….

The reproducibility crisis

Watts Up With That? does a good job covering the climate scam, the only flaw being that they post so much good data that one is apt to lose sight of the forest for the trees.

They have recently posted an excellent post on the reproducibility crisis. The short of it is that nineteen out twenty science papers seem to be making up their data.

I would say that this reflects incentives. If you actually make observations, you are bound to run into some land mine of an ever growing and ever holier orthodoxy enforced by peer review, while if you simply make stuff up, you will be fine. So any scientist who believes in actual observation eventually finds himself in some other career.

The influx of priestly types into science was bound to result in an exodus of scientist types, in the same way we are seeing an exodus of engineering types from open source, and it appears that this transformation is now complete. Science is now about one third global warming, one third the neglected role of women, and one third making stuff up in the style and subject matter of famous science papers from back in the day when scientists actually did science. Soon scientist will stop bothering with those postmodern pastiches on old fashioned science topics, and it will all be about the oppression of drag queens.

And, since I am covering WattsUpWithThat, here is the short on global warming science. So I am going to give you the view from twenty thousand feet, and suggest you spend a week reading Watts Up with That to get a glimpse of a small part of the trees.

For the full sordid tale, search their site for references to the Climategate files.

The climategate files, most of which I myself read, are the internal emails of the climate conspiracy. It is obvious from their internal emails that the official climate scientists do no know and do not care whether the world is warming or cooling, whether humans are causing it or not, and whether it would be bad or good.

Their objective is to indict humans in general, whites and western civilization in particular, and anglos specifically, for crimes against Gaia.

In the climategate files, one encounters a few low status scientists who are worried about actual facts. They did not doubt holy global warming, they just wanted the data proving the sins of mankind to be genuine data. They all swiftly ceased to have careers in science.

What is the motive for this conspiracy?

Lots of motives, but the motive we saw on display with South Australia’s Green Energy program was to shakedown the electricity grid for a few bucks in the course of destroying South Australia. Instead of turning wind and solar power into electric power, and electric power into money, they turned wind and solar into superior holiness, superior holiness into status, and status into money.

South Australia wound up with blackouts, brown outs, sky high electricity prices, and massive imports of electric power from coal mining states.

I think most of them are in it for the shakedown. Global Warming resembles the Aztec religion, in that human sacrifices are required to ensure that the sun rises tomorrow. And then the priesthood get something in return for their influence over who gets sacrificed.

Of course there are some, the Greta Thunberg Bernie Sanders crowd, who just like human sacrifice. If not global warming, they would find some other justification, as Trump told us at the Davos conference.

Josh Hawley: Legislation ‘Necessary’ to Address Chinese Monopoly of U.S. Drug, Medical Supplies

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) wrote a letter to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Monday, contending that it is “inexcusable” that America relies on China for its medical supply chain. Hawley called hearings and legislation to determine how to address America’s reliance on Chinese for producing vital medicine.

The Missouri conservative wrote a letter to U.S. FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn after reports revealed that the coronavirus has jeopardized the “domestic supply of some 150 prescription drugs, including antibiotics, generics, and branded drugs.”

Hawley said that the time is coming for Congress to have oversight and consider legislation to address the insecurity of America’s medical supply chain.

Hawley wrote to Hahn:

The degree to which some of our own manufacturers rely on China to produce life-saving and life-sustaining medications is inexcusable. It is becoming clear to me that both oversight hearings and additional legislation are necessary to determine the extent of our reliance on Chinese production and protect our medical product supply chain.

Reports have revealed the extent to which China produces and exports the overwhelming majority of pharmaceuticals to the United States. China exports 97 percent of all antibiotics and 80 percent of active ingredients used to make drugs in Americans.

Another report stated that America is losing its ability to make pharmaceuticals because of Chinese dumping of low-price products into the global market.