Monday, December 07, 2015

Bullet Points (Pun Intended) on Obama's San Bernardino Speech

I riffed on the speech a bit during last night's podcast, but hey, how about some of the ol' "extend and revise?"

Full text here for those who want to read it, and here's the video for those who can stand to watch:

Obama's speech vs. fact, truth and reality:

Obama: "As we've become better at preventing complex multifaceted attacks like 9/11, terrorists turn to less complicated acts of violence like the mass shootings that are all too common in our society. It is this type of attack that we saw at Fort Hood in 2009, in Chattanooga earlier this year, and now in San Bernardino."

Fact, Truth and Reality: The 2009 attack at Fort Hood and the attack on US military facilities in Chattanooga last July were not "terrorism." Terrorism involves attacks on civilian non-combatants, not military personnel and facilities. The purpose of terrorism is to terrorize populations, not to kill military personnel. Fort Hood and Chattanooga were acts of war.

Obama: "There are several steps that Congress should take right away. To begin with, Congress should act to make sure no one on a no-fly list is able to buy a gun. What could possibly be the argument for allowing a terrorist suspect to buy a semiautomatic weapon? This is a matter of national security."

Fact, Truth and Reality: As Christopher Burg points out over at A Geek With Guns, this is among other things a big Fifth Amendment no-no. In theory -- theory that Obama should know quite well as a former "constitutional law professor" -- the government does not get to deprive people of life, liberty or property without due process of law. The "no-fly" list already violates that constitutional prohibition. It's nothing more and nothing less than a secret enemies list. We have no way of knowing who's on the list, why they're on it, how they got on it, who gets to put people on it. Even the people who are on it don't know they're on it until they try to board planes. In any sane society, the people responsible for the existence and maintenance of the "no-fly list" would quickly be imprisoned or exiled. Obama wants to extend that secret enemies list's power such that instead of merely infringing on the right to travel, it also infringes on the right to keep and bear arms. Fvck that noise.

Obama: "We also need to make it harder for people to buy powerful assault weapons, like the ones that were used in San Bernardino."

Fact, Truth and Reality: Semi-automatic rifle actions have been around since 1885 and are quite common in hunting/sporting rifles. The only noticeable difference between those hunting/sporting rifles and the AR-15s used by Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik is cosmetic appearance. The AR-15 and other "assault weapons" look mean, military and scary. Really. That's the difference.

As I note above, terrorism involves using attacks on civilians to terrorize. Every time some victim disarmament advocate jumps up and down about "assault weapons" in reference to a terror attack they are, at the very least, aiding and abetting the attackers in achieving the desired effect of scaring the bejabbers out of people who don't know the facts. Or, to put it a different way, victim disarmament advocates like Obama are terrorists.

Obama: "I know there are some who reject any gun-safety measures"

Fact, Truth and Reality: Victim disarmament, aka "gun control," isn't a "gun-safety measure." It's an attempt to deprive Americans of the means of self-defense, making them less safe. Why would an American politician want to make Americans less safe? I'll let L. Neil Smith explain: "The one and only reason politicians, bureaucrats, and policemen want to take your weapons away from you is so that they can do things to you that they couldn't do if you still had your weapons."

Obama: "The strategy that we are using now -- air strikes, special forces, and working with local forces who are fighting to regain control of their own country -- that is how we'll achieve a more sustainable victory, and it won't require us sending a new generation of Americans overseas to fight and die for another decade on foreign soil."

Fact, Truth and Reality: That strategy has never worked anywhere the US has tried it before.  Obama is old enough to just barely remember Vietnam, so he presumably knows that it has never worked anywhere the US has tried it before. What reason does he have to believe, and why should we believe with him, that it's going to magically start working now?

Obama could have saved time with his speech by cutting out the details and keeping it to maybe 30 seconds: "The San Bernardino attack was awful. I'm working 24/7 to exploit that attack for the purpose of making things even worse. Good night, and good luck."

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