The New York Times published a piece purporting to illustrate which gun control proposals would prevent the most deaths, and their popularity with the general public. To create their graphic, the Times asked “experts” to populate the list. One problem: the Times hand-picked their “experts.” The results are entirely predictable.

Our expert survey asked dozens of social scientists, lawyers and public health officials how effective each of 29 policies would be in reducing firearm homicide deaths, regardless of their political feasibility or cost. …

The academics in our panel — many of the country’s best empirical researchers on gun policy — were far more likely than the general public to support gun control. But nearly all of the policies that experts think could work have widespread support from the general public.

Asking carefully selected “social scientists, lawyers and public health officials” to rate the effectiveness gun control proposals is like asking a diehard Patriots fan to rate their team’s chances of winning the Super Bowl– at the beginning of the season.

In fact, this survey is a perfect example of confirmation bias, “the tendency to interpret new evidence as confirmation of one’s existing beliefs or theories.” Truth be told, the proposals these selected “experts” suggested might be favored by the majority of the people the Times selected for their poll, but the majority of Americans don’t want to see more gun control enacted.

A recent [far more scientific] poll by CNN found that 52% of Americans oppose stricter gun control laws with only 46% in favor. Public opinion has been moving away from support for more restrictions.

Rather than producing anything of value, the New York Times has crafted an excellent piece of anti-gun propaganda. By calling a gaggle of gun control supporters “experts” and excluding anyone with any practical knowledge of firearms and personal defense from the process, they got the desired result.

Worse, The Old Gray Lady portrayed their carefully curated outcome as objective reporting. It’s the ultimate argument from authority where no actual authority is involved.

And here I thought the Times was opposed to “fake news.” Turns out they were just annoyed that other people had gotten in on their game.

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68 Responses to NYT Surveys ‘Experts’ About Gun Control, Forgets the Gun Experts

  1. Who are we to question such “academics” anyway? They’re academics, therefore we should all acknowledge the superior intellectual powers of such individuals and not be such troublesome low-brow thinkers.
    That is what I’m supposed to read in this NYT article, no?

  2. The NYT should be put out of business, they are only propaganda publishers printing what the liberal assholes want.

    • I believe they ARE the liberal s of whom you speak, and, printing what they want to see.

      never get high of your own supply.

    • Don’t worry – they, along with most forms of physical print media “journalism” will be dead.

      I’m 35 – I don’t know a single person in my cohort who gets a newspaper.

  3. This approach applies to other things in the last dozen years. Look at our soon to be ex-President. No real experience
    except academic prior to taking office.

    • Even his academic credentials are fairly thin. Just an Ivy affirmative action baby, then an adjunct instructor for a year or so. He was never a full time professor. Never had anything of note published other than as a student. Never tried any case, let alone any important case, as far as I know. I cannot think of a less qualified president within the past century.

      • Full professor is the top level of the tenure track, and takes a long time. Obama was never tenure track, and clearly never wanted to be, since he turned down offers to join the faculty as such.

        Had he accepted those offers, he maybe is becoming a full professor around the time when he took office. More likely is he’s taken the promotion to associate a few years before and is working on career building by researching, publishing, networking, and all that, to eventually make the jump to full professor.

        • And I realize now that I misread “full time professor” in your comment as “full professor”.

          You’re right, he was never full-time faculty member. He was a Lecturer (like a adjunct professor) for four years, then a Senior Lecturer for another eight, all while working as a lawyer and politician. He never showed any interest in advancing in academia.

  4. Look at how few measures are judged by their “experts” as “likely not effective” – damned few and pretty much all pro-self-defense. Even microstamping was rated as effective, despite it never having been successfully implemented, anywhere in the world, ever. One wonders what data went into that determination.

    • Then, of course, there’s the “microstamping bullets” thing, as opposed to microstamping casings. The latter is impracticable, the former is insane.

        • But where on the bullet would you stamp it? On the part covered by the casing, on the outer diameter obliterated by the rifling, or on the nose of a bullet as it’s being fired? Makes a firing pin microstamp look like child’s play.

        • Didn’t the Gyrojet have a hammer that smacked the cartridge on the nose to ignite it? I would go with a cutesy emoticon on my bullets. >:3

    • “One wonders what data went into that determination.”–False data promoted by false assumptions. You must remember, TRUTH & ACCURACY are NOT REQUIRED, NOT IMPORTANT & NOT WANTED, just the end desired result.

  5. Looks like the “experts” all agree that increasing the size of the “prohibited persons” pool by any means necessary would be a good idea. It’s kind of refreshing to see such honesty come out of the Ivory Towers.

    I wonder how the various groups defending those with mental illness feel about all these public health and social worker “experts” throwing them under the bus like this.

  6. Most if not all agree that these “news” rags are propaganda, fake news vehicles….at the same time why do so many at the same time selectively believe some the crap they spew out? Is it only fake news when it doesn’t fit a persons own worldview, selective bias?

  7. And don’t forget the definition of “effective”:

    …how effective each of 29 policies would be in reducing firearm homicide deaths

    Besides the lack of evidence supporting the opinions of the “experts” regarding the efficacy at reducing firearm homicide deaths (n.b. isn’t “homicide death” redundant?) – apparently none of the experts live in Chicago – no word on the effectiveness of any of the 29 policies in reducing overall homicide deaths, or overall violent crime. (The UK could not be reached for comment.)

    And, of course, the indicators of effectiveness conflate homicides with accidents. (Why else would “require safety training” be considered to be “effective” at reducing homicides by nearly 50% of “experts”? Does safety training have some impact on someone’s intentional use of deadly force?)

    • ^^^ 3 thumbs up!
      “conflate homicides with accidents.”
      And don’t forget also conflating homicides with suicides. Almost everybody who isn’t a gun owner does that one…

      • In legalese all deaths that are not by natural causes are classified as homicides. My nephew’s death, either by poisoning or a fatal allergic reaction is still being investigated as a homicide.
        NYT uses this so they lump suicides (2/3 of all death by firearm) and inflate the number of gun homicides.
        Lying with numbers.

    • Most of these are non-points, or at least points not worth making.

      “Homicide deaths”, seriously? Pedantic, much? How do you know that their line if thinking is more of category/subcategory approach? They start with firearm deaths, then get more specific with homicide deaths? What you call redundant might just as well be called thorough or precise. That’s just an anti-NYT feeding frenzy point; it’s piling in for the sake of piling on.

      So what if they address accidents along with intentional shootings? Dead is dead, isn’t it, whether by accident ot intent? What’s wrong with the goal of reducing firearm deaths, other things being equal? Unless you’re pro-death, that’s a tricky argument to make. You haven’t *caught* the NYT in anything with that point. It’s just another non-point brought into being only by the TTAG feeding frenzy and echo chamber.

      Now, there is plenty to disagree with in this NYT piece, which others have already ably expressed, but these points (except for the overall homicide and violence rates) are silly filler.

      • Wow. That’s quite the diatribe in rebuttal of a parenthetical comment I made.

        For the record: homicide means “killed intentionally by a person”. So, “homicide death” is redundant in the same sense that “ATM machine” is redundant.

        Sorry that side comnent got under your skin so much.

  8. I see they lightly sprinkle some wild ideas in the mix to make them seem more normal and fluid with existing ideas.

    like.

    Fingerprint gun owners (Sign me up! not.)

    Require gun license ( Like a privilege)

    Semi auto gun ban (Broad stroke there)

    Ammo purchase ban (That should do it, no ammo for you, therefore no need to ban guns)

    Demonstrate need for a gun (eh, you don’t “really” need one, we have police in your area)

    Limit gun purchases (yea, to like, 1)

    No thanks NYT’s

    Would of thought “child proof gun locks” would of topped the charts on both sides, so much for “expert” credibility.

    • Bernie wants to ban all semi-automatic firearms and all firearms not primarily designed for hunting.
      That must be interpreted to mean he wants to ban all hand guns. All shotguns except breach load single and double barrel. All rifles except bolt action or muzzle loader.
      Next he would ban knives, pepper spray, Mag Lite 4 D Cell flashlights, and the use of anything but one’s bare hands for self defense so he can provide criminals with a safe place to work just like the UK has.

      • You must remember that the UcK is a Liberal, Socialist, Orwellian, Muslim paradise that must be emulated. Why do you think that it has the distinguishing honor of the most violent country in Europe?

  9. “Fingerprint gun owners (Sign me up! not.)
    Require gun license ( Like a privilege)
    Semi auto gun ban (Broad stroke there)
    Demonstrate need for a gun (eh, you don’t “really” need one, we have police in your area)”

    MA does 3 of the first 4, and many towns use the 4th in their decision to determine if a person has 2nd Amendment rights.

  10. This is in today’s NYT email:
    ” OPINION | Op-Ed Contributors
    Seven Questions About Health Reform
    By HAROLD POLLACK and TIMOTHY S. JOST

    Vague promises are not enough when we are considering enormous changes in our $3 trillion medical economy. ”

    Didn’t Obama do exactly that with the ACA? We were told the exact truth when we were told we’d have to pass it before we could know what’s in it, because the ACA was only an outline, with “The Secretary Shall…” make the final results known at a later date in the Act a LOT of times.
    Hypocrisy doesn’t seem to be in the left’s or the NYT’s vocabulary, unless they are talking about the right.

  11. “the New York Times has crafted an excellent piece of anti-gun propaganda.”
    Well, perhaps by comparison to ‘the russians are coming! The russians are coming! Hide the ballots and the children!’, but it’s still awfully easy to discredit. Perhaps excellent by the standards of the lamestream media, but that is still kind of like king of the dipshits.

  12. One interesting note on the data: even the anti-gun “experts” believe that gun-free zones are not effective. I’m sure the antis will carry on with that bit of security theater, but it’s interesting to see an admission that they don’t believe in it.

  13. pretty much the same way they forgot to talk with REAL SCIENTISTS (not like the “97%” that consisted of students and non-scientists) when talking about global warming

  14. Why would it possibly matter if the “experts” and public agree?
    It should only matter if there is empirical evidence that a specific policy could actually work while not infringing on the rights of the populace.

  15. “Universal background checks” can only be enforced with a national gun registry…which in of itself is constitutionally precarious as well as logistically and fiscally impossible. Why then are these ideas even bandied about? Similarly with “assault weapon” ban proposals…how to these central planners propose to enforce said ban? Do they propose to confiscate those weapons already in circulation? Well…good luck with that, as with the aforementioned such efforts would be virtually impossible in the U.S. Will they grandfather those weapons already in private hands? Well, then they’ve accomplished nothing visa vie their goal. It would seem to me that these supposed experts have literally preformed no critical inquiry within their supposed fields of study.

    As someone who values critical thinking, ideas and the life of the mind I find this level of stupidity contagious.

  16. In summary, to reduce gun deaths in the United States, make Chicago style gun laws the standard for the entire nation.
    Because that is working out so well for Chicago, right?

    • And you just know that if they ever did achieve that, they’d just blame Canada’s lax gun laws and some mythical “iron river” for the continued and accelerating gun violence. I guess liberalism means never having to say you’re sorry.

  17. I used to buy the Sunday Paper for the comics and TV schedule. Now it is all on the Internet. Don’t need newspapers.

  18. Given that I quite literally have nothing to do at the office, I feel a proper fisking is in order. In the interest of simplicity I’ll stick to the bullshit term “gun violence” without the quotes. Quotes get annoying. I’ll also stick to a federal perspective, as the article seems to suggest that these ideas are to be implemented on the federal level.

    From “least effective” to “most effective”:

    Authorizing stand-your-ground laws nationally that allow people to defend themselves using lethal force without needing to retreat first.

    This is the only time in the history of ever, to my knowledge, stand your ground laws have even been suggested to reduce gun violence. Neither is stand your ground the “license to kill” that most of the gun grabbing leftists would like to portray. Stand your ground laws simply codify your natural, civil, and Constitutionally protected right to armed self defense by removing all liability in a justified defensive situation (something that shouldn’t NEED to be codified).

    Also, unless I’m mistaken, stand your ground laws do not limit themselves to defensive scenarios involving firearms.

    Requiring every state to honor out-of-state permits to carry a concealed weapon.

    Again, I’m not sure this has ever been touted by anyone to be a gun violence prevention measure. It’s more of a freedom allowance measure. National reciprocity simple means that a citizen doesn’t lose their right to armed self defense by crossing a fairly arbitrary line on a map.

    Requiring that all gun owners store their guns with childproof locks.

    Gun locks currently on the market generally fall into two, sometimes overlapping categories: completely ineffective and/or easily defeated. Some locks provided with new firearm purchases actually still allow the gun to fire with the lock installed. Others can be defeated with the simple application of a small amount of leverage.

    The former category is completely ineffective as a safety device. The latter category is only capable of stopping toddler age children and younger from accessing the firearm. Maybe.

    Despite the potential of stopping some accidents, mandatory gun locks serve the dual purpose of rendering the firearm completely ineffective for self defense. Most self defense scenarios end in 3 seconds. Where that 3 seconds was formerly used to draw, aim, and fire the weapon it now includes the time needed to fiddle with the lock.

    Banning firearms from schools and college campuses nationally.

    Data shows that this is already absolutely ineffective at stopping any form of gun violence from occurring.

    Just a cursory glance at Google lists 20+ university shootings in the United States in recent history. Every university at which a shooting took place had a campus wide firearm ban in place. Every shooter ignored the campus wide firearm ban in order to carry out the shooting.

    Are we to believe that federal legislation will suddenly stop these people from ignoring the rules?

    Implementing a national “buy-back” program for all banned firearms and magazines, where the government pays people to turn in illegal guns.

    First, the federal government cannot buy back privately owned firearms. In order to buy them back the government would have had to own them in the first place.

    Second, a MANDATORY buy back is a confiscation of private property, illegal under the Fourth Amendment. Paying a “fair price” does not negate this.

    Further, what is banned? Except for fully automatic weapons manufactured after 1986 there are currently no federally banned firearms that I know of. In order to buy back confiscate firearms the government would have to ban some first. Which ones? What are the criteria? Who gets to make that decision?

    Requiring that gun buyers complete safety training and a test for their specific firearm.

    Despite recent SCOTUS rulings re: Obamacare, the federal government has absolutely no Constitutional authority to mandate a private citizen spend their money on any particular product. Including firearms training.

    And who sets the standard for what level of training is acceptable? Congress? Most of them have a hard time spelling “gun.”

    Banning firearms from all workplace settings nationally.

    Another Constitutional overreach. Despite judicious use of the common good clause, the federal government has no authority to mandate what a private corporation does or does not allow within the confines of their private property.

    They get away with the EPA and other regulations, but it’s a stretch to apply the same logic to the carrying of firearms.

    That said, see university shootings. Every single shooter ignored laws that prevented them from possessing the gun they used on campus. Should we believe a ban in the workplace wouldn’t be similarly ignored?

    Requiring that all gun owners store their guns in a safe storage unit.

    Again, as this would require the purchase of a safe storage unit the Congress has no authority to mandate the purchase.

    Also, what are the criteria? Several days (weeks?) ago here on TTAG there was a video posted showing how easily some of the best selling gun safes in the country are defeated. Given enough determination, ANY safe storage container can be defeated.

    Limiting the amount of ammunition you can purchase within a given time period.

    Eric Harris website began showing signs of mental instability and anger in early 1997. It wasn’t until April 20, 1999 that he and Dylan Klebold killed 13 people and injured 21 at Columbine High School.

    The deranged tend to be willing to wait.

    Limiting the number of guns that can be purchased to one per month.

    Simply this: unless someone is walking around with more than two arms, they can only operate two firearms simultaneously. Even in shooting incidents where more than one firearm was used, only one was ever used at a given time.

    I’d really be curious to see what the “experts” justification for including this was.

    Requiring a mandatory waiting period of three days after gun is purchased before it can be taken home.

    See the notes on Columbine above. If someone is unstable enough to consider such an attack their insanity will allow them to wait out any arbitrary waiting period.

    Preventing sales of all firearms and ammunition to anyone considered to be a “known or suspected terrorist” by the F.B.I.

    A violation of the due process clause of the Fifth Amendment. I’d really rather not see terrorists with weapons, the federal government is not allowed to deprive a U.S. citizen of their rights without due process.

    Besides, the government has already proven itself incapable of stopping suspected terrorists form obtaining guns. The Joint Terrorism Task Force knew about contact Nidal Hasan had with Yemeni terrorists, but were unable to stop him from killing 13 and wounding 30 at Fort Hood.

    You might argue that that’s just one case. Isn’t that the point? To stop THEM ALL? If the measures on this list aren’t 100% effective then they need to be deemed completely ineffective.

    Requiring all gun owners to register their fingerprints.

    To what end? How exactly does a fingerprint database reduce gun violence? I have no argument here because I can’t even come up with an angle a gun grabber would use to deem this effective….

    I would ask: do you expect a gang banger on the South Side to comply with this requirement?

    Banning the sale and ownership of assault rifles or similar firearms.

    Assault rifles manufactured after 1986 are already banned from private ownership. And the “similar firearms” are almost NEVER used in gun crimes. To rank this high on the list of effectiveness I would have thought that the antis would have at least picked a category of firearm that would have given them the biggest bang for the buck.

    Which leads me to conclude, maybe too late, that this list is pure theater. Handguns are used in the vast majority of gun violence cases, but the antis know that they would never get a handgun ban passed. Vilifying “assault rifles” is their way of appearing to do something about the problem, while actually achieving nothing.

    Requiring gun dealers to keep, retain and report all gun records and sales to the Federal government.

    Gun dealers must already keep and retain all records. Forever.

    I’ve already pointed out several times in this list how the government knew or should have known someone was dangerous and failed to stop them anyway. A registry of all gun sales would have the same effect. What use, EXACTLY, is a registry of sales in preventing gun violence?

    Short answer: it isn’t. If someone buys a gun and the government gets a record of it they still have no way of knowing if the intended target is a piece of paper, a pond full of ducks, or a movie theater. The ONLY justifiable reason for the federal government to maintain a registry of gun purchases is an eventual, outright confiscation.

    Increasing minimum penalties for people found possessing firearms illegally.

    This one MAY actually be effective. Even a blind squirrel finds a nut eventually.

    Requiring all guns to microstamp each bullet with a mark that uniquely matches the gun and bullet.

    Government mandated technology is ALWAYS a bad idea. Only now are we seeing vehicles that meet the government’s emission standards get the gas mileage of a smoke spewing land yacht from 40 years ago. And at 3 times the price, even accounting for inflation.

    The government has no idea how the technologies they mandate work, nor do they understand the economic consequences for the rest of us.

    On top of that, there is no such technology in existence. Even if I presume the author is an idiot and meant “casing” where he wrote “bullet.” There is no commercially viable technology that will allow identifying features to be imprinted on a round when it is fired.

    Expanding screening and treatment for the mentally ill.

    Another not so bad idea, insofar as it is completely lacking any detail. Whatever they suggest here needs to be HIGHLY scrutinized to preserve a person’s rights.

    (The point at which I realize I’m only half done…)

    Requiring that all firearms be recorded in a national registry.

    This is the same answer as the registry for purchases or for fingerprints. There is no feasible way a gun registry can be used to predict which guns will be used in a crime.

    Banning the sale and ownership of all ammunition magazines with a capacity greater than 10 bullets.

    A COMPLETELY arbitrary number. All that will require is a determined individual reload more often, which has actually been shown to be FASTER than a single magazine with more ammunition.

    Requiring all owners to report lost or stolen firearms.

    Another “the devil is in the lack of details” idea. The government hasn’t the authority to mandate this type of thing, and if they did what would the reporting requirements be? Some states have set the reporting limit to 24 hours. I personally haven’t opened my safe in 4 or 5 days. If a gun was missing not only would I not know it right now, I would be a felon and not know it.

    Preventing sales of all firearms to people who have been reported as dangerous to law enforcement by a mental health provider.

    No. No. NO.

    Back to the Fifth Amendment and due process. A doctor, even one that is genuinely concerned and not acting out of malice, is not a judge and jury.

    Banning the sale and ownership of all semi-automatic and automatic firearms.

    The fact that this idea ranks so high on the effectiveness list really tips their hand as to their end game.

    Automatic firearms are already subject to a de facto ban, and are NEVER used in a crime.

    According to the NRA-ILA semi-automatic firearms account for roughly 50% of new firearm purchases. It’s a tough sell to convince someone that blocking the sale of 50% of the firearms on the market is not a violation of “shall not be infringed.”

    Let us hope the antis never catch on to what a deranged individual with a bolt action rifle and a good scope would be capable of…

    Requiring all sellers to run background checks on anyone who buys ammunition.

    Chris Harper Mercer (Umpqua Community College), Dylan Roof (Charleston), Army Specialist Ivan Lopez (Fort Hood 2014), Aaron Alexis (DC Navy Yard), Wade M. Page (Wisconsin Sikh temple), James Holmes (Aurora movie theater), One L. Goh (Oikos University), Jared Loughner (Tucson), Nidal Hasan (Fort Hood 2009), and Jiverly Wong (Binghamton) all passed background checks.

    Requiring all gun owners to possess a license for their firearm.

    What’s the big deal, right? We require everyone to have a driver’s license…..

    Except no we don’t. You are required to have a driver’s license to operate a motor vehicle on a public roadway. You can drive on private property all you want without one. There also isn’t a Constitutional right regarding driving.

    Preventing sales of all firearms to people who have been convicted of stalking another person

    Herein I reveal (more of) my personal bias. Objectively, not a bad idea. Personally, even AFTER a felony conviction if the person is deemed safe enough to be released they are also safe enough to own a gun.

    If they are not safe enough to own a gun, they shouldn’t be free.

    Preventing sales of all firearms to people who have been convicted of violent misdemeanors, including domestic assaults.

    Same as above.

    Requiring all sellers to run background checks on anyone who buys a gun.

    I can’t think of a single other item I own that I could sell to another individual that has a similar requirement. And NONE of those other things I can’t think of are protected by their very own Constitutional amendment.

    And, once again: Chris Harper Mercer (Umpqua Community College), Dylan Roof (Charleston), Army Specialist Ivan Lopez (Fort Hood 2014), Aaron Alexis (DC Navy Yard), Wade M. Page (Wisconsin Sikh temple), James Holmes (Aurora movie theater), One L. Goh (Oikos University), Jared Loughner (Tucson), Nidal Hasan (Fort Hood 2009), and Jiverly Wong (Binghamton) all passed background checks.

    Well, that was a fun way to kill an hour and a half…..

      • That’s not exactly government mandated technology, that’s government mandated use of previously existing technology. Requiring microstamped bullets would be government mandating non-existent technology. It is akin to mandating that all cars must run on internal combustion engines fueled by water.

        Also, FWIW, I don’t think seatbelt laws should exist. Its my business if I want to use personal protective equipment or not. I do, by the way, wear my seatbelt – because of the laws of physics, not the laws of the state.

      • As said before, the technology came first.

        Volvo built their reputation on selling safer cars, but they gave away the most important safety device ever invented: the three-point seat belt. The universal modern seat belt, created by Volvo engineer Nils Bohlin in 1959.

        However, the first seat belt law was a federal law, Title 49 of the United States Code, Chapter 301, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard, which took effect on January 1, 1968, that required all vehicles (except buses) to be fitted with seat belts in all designated seating positions. Lap belt laws came about in 1964.

        New York was the first state to pass a law which required vehicle occupants to wear seat belts, a law that came into effect on December 1, 1984.

        A state by state money grab was implemented very quickly after.

        Seat belt use went from near 15% in the 1970s to the current level of somewhere near 90%.
        Was this do to negative reinforcement/state laws with steep fines?Probably not, most likely usage increase was do to education(fear is marketing) and massive marketing campaigns about vehicle safety. Better driver’s education programs for the youth. How many people saw multiple pictures and videos of people’s heads smashed through windshields during middle school and high school? Not to mention personal experiences or deaths that hit much closer to home.

        Mandatory seat belt use laws are as stupid as motorcycle helmet laws. I use a seat belt and I wear a helmet, but the government has no right to make me do either.

        Culling the herd, if you aren’t smart enough to protect yourself, so be it. Suffer the consequences.

        The government shouldn’t be playing mommy.(at the tax payers expense)
        Feed yourself
        Protect yourself
        Shelter yourself
        Most importantly grow the hell up and be a productive member of society.(when you are productive and paying taxes the paradigm will shift)
        There may be a very small minority of people who are mentally or physically incapable of doing this. That number is a small fraction of the teet suckers that have sucked the system dry.

        Government mandated technology does not work. Look up California’s track record on electric cars. The mandates that Tesla and other are achieving now with huge tax payer subsidies. Were originally mandated almost 30 years ago. Most of the people buying Tesla cars today have never even heard of an EV1.

        I shouldn’t even have to mention E85 or any other government enforced/subsidized ethanol program. Flex Fuel vehicles?

        This turned into a bit of a rant.

        I am a Family man, a Business owner ,and a patriot.
        Most importantly, I love this country and have witnessed first hand that anyone can succeed here if they put their mind to it.

  19. Recall a study of predicting future behavior of criminals. Social workers had a 30% success rate. Police had a 60% success rate. Who knew criminals better?

  20. Well, if I get to pick the experts, I can “prove” anything that you want. On what would you like me to manufacture the illusion of truth?

  21. A modest proposal, which I will name: “The Amateur Fabulist Irrelevancy Act (AKA, that’s based on what, again?)”

    I am all for our “friends” passing any of their fantasy restrictions, better yet all of them, one at a time, as long as each includes:

    — An explicit reference to the justifying constitutional provision and interpretation.

    — A trial, A/B implementation scheme, with and without the restriction in place, for comparison.

    — A “sunset clause” shutting down the policy. NOT reauthorization (like the Patriot Act), but literally expiring it.

    — An explicit prescription for measuring & publishing the costs and “benefits” of the policy in terms of it’s policy goal, conicident with the shut down.

    — An explicit requirement to make a record of an operational review: say an Inspector General review of the policy impacts, its implementation, and implementing organization, including compliance with requirements of good budgeting, transparency, oversight, and similar.

    — Mandatory, publication of the above results, tied to “completion payments” for the agencies, contractors, staff, and yes “experts” involved with the experiment. Payment schedule published when the law is passe, and as it winds down, of course.

    Congress can then take the issue up again, in the “regular order”, with the experience of the experiment available to them, and us. I look forward to the many advocacy articles from Pravda-on-the-Hudson as these programs unfold. I assume they’ll eagerly publish the results which will only back their position because of course they are right.

    For the present, I’ll be inclined to listen to their policy prescriptions when they have some basis like above. Otherwise, it’s kind of “Policies so good, you can’t tell they’re working.” “Results we’re so sure of, nobody’s allowed to watch what happens.”

    Right now, we don’t have “experts” we have “fabulists.”, and “amateur fabulists” at that.

    • Jim, you are asking for competency from congress. Ain’t gonna happen. Not for a long time.
      Until we get congresscritters who understand that they are public servants, not our betters whose ideas must be followed, we will be in trouble.
      For that, we need an educated, thinking electorate; unfortunately, we are moving farther from that every election cycle.

  22. The Panel of Experts:
    Cathy Barber–Harvard Professor and director of the Means Matter Campaign, an anti-gun suicide prevention program
    Magdalena Cerda–Chairwoman of the Violence Prevention Research Program (An anti firearms violence research center)
    Jay Corzine–Professor at UCF in Sociology no specific interest in firearms, just general violent crime that I can find

    John Donohue III–Law Professor at Stanford whose wikipedia page says (widely know for his writings on effect of legalized abortions on crime and his criticism of John Lott’s book More Guns, Less Crime)

    Laura Dugan–University of Maryland Professor whose publications mostly deal with Terrorism

    Liza H Gold–Wrote into washington post to express her disappointment with them showing teens with guns

    David Hemenway–Wowza, quoted on his wikipedia page as saying “The gun is a great equalizer because it makes wimps as dangerous as people who really have skill and bravery and so I’d like to have this notion that anyone using a gun is a wuss. They aren’t anybody to be looked up to. They’re somebody to look down at because they couldn’t defend themselves or couldn’t protect others without using a gun”

    David M Kennedy–Professor and author, a lot of his quotes point towards focusing on the gang problem to reduce gun violence, so seems legit

    Louis Klarevas–Writer, quoted in the trace as saying “On the issue of deadly domestic terror in America, religion and skin color are not common denominators. Guns are”

    Gary Kleck–Gun control skeptic, did very detailed study on the actual number of defensive gun uses, seems legit

    Dave Kopel–No summary necessary, big gun rights advocate

    Tomislav Kovandzic–“Pro-gun” professor in favor of universal background checks

    Adam Lankford–Researcher who published a study stating more guns=more mass shootings, then refused to release the details of how the study was conducted. Quoted in the study as saying “Perhaps the most obvious step the United States could take to reduce public mass shootings may also be the most politically challenging: reduce firearms availability”

    John Lott–Pro gun, no explanation required

    Jonathan Metzl–Professor for Vanderbilt, quoted in article on MSNBC as saying “Yet as we move forward from the recent shameful setbacks in the gun-control debate, we must avoid reproducing historical stereotypes that stigmatize persons with mental illness.” and “But focusing centrally on the psychology of individual assailants ultimately makes it ever-harder to address the larger issues that guns in America represent: the mass psychology of needing so many guns in the first place, or the anxieties, apprehensions, and psychical traumas created by being surrounded by them all the time.”

    Matthew Miller–Research associate of David Hemenway above, seems to share many of his viewpoints on gun control

    Carlisle E Moody–William and Mary College professor, his research articles jump all over the map between pro gun and anti-gun, so I think he’d be basically neutral

    Andrew Papachristos–Criminologist whose main published work emphasizes focusing on the small group of population that accounts for the majority of shootings.

    Charles Ransford–Researcher, can’t find many quotes or articles about him

    Peter Reuters–Only big work I can find is on the ineffectiveness of the Australian gun ban, which I though was good, but it concluded with the quote “The lower levels of legal gun
    prevalence following the ban-buybacks, from this perspective, represent a move
    in the right direction, irrespective of the marginal impact of the reforms on the
    short-run social costs of gun violence” So he seems to be of the opinion that less guns is better for everyone, even if buy backs don’t work.

    Mark Rosenberg–CDC Officicial quoted in WaPO as wanting his agency to create a public perception of firearms as “dirty, deadly—and banned.” Also coautored official publication from CDC, Public Health Policy for Preventing Gun Violence. This taxpayer-funded gun control polemic offered two strategies for preventing firearm injuries—“restrictive licensing (for example, only police, military, guards, and so on)” and “prohibit gun ownership.”

    Michael Siegal–Researcher quoted on his website as saying this about a pro-gun control study “Two things I would place small bets on. Within a few months, this study will be shown to be flawed in some way and its conclusions toned down. And for the next ten years, the initial abstract will be quoted by gun control advocates as proof of their position (e.g., the selective quoting of Mother Jones).” So he seems to get how it works.

    Gary Slutkin–Doctor who hopes to cure gun violence, but I’m not sure which way he leans. Seems to be real friendly with WaPo, thetrace, and bloomberg so I’m dubious about him.

    Robert J Sptizer–Professor at Cortland who is quoted in WaPo saying the 2nd Amendment is not about stopping a tyrannical government.

    Daniel Webster–Professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and director of the Center for Gun Policy and Reserach. The few things I’ve found from him are as non gun friendly as you would expect from someone in his position.

    Stephen Teret–Dean at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and director of the Center for Gun Policy and Reserach. The few things I’ve found from him are as non gun friendly as you would expect from someone in his position.

    George Tita–Published a study in 2006 about restricting access to ammunition as a way to limit gun violence and proposed a registry to ammunition purchases.

    Eugene Volokh–Writer at WaPo which doesn’t look good from him, but his articles seem to lean toward pro-gun. Or at least the point out the cost problems of gun control policies and the fact they violate the 2nd amendment.

    April Zeoli–Professor at MSU, a lot of work seems to lean towards the pro gun control side, but mostly focuses on reducing domestive violence.

    So to summarize, 13 who are soldily anti-gun, 5 solidly pro-gun, 11 neutral-ish, and 3 whose names are missing.

    • Going by your summaries and my own personal knowledge, not counting the three unnamed sources, I’d say that’s 18 solidly anti-gun, 6 solidly pro-gun (Eugene Volokh is on our side from a Constitutional law standpoint), and 5 who may be neutral.

      Although you could also say that anyone who is truly neutral — in the sense of being honest about the facts on the ground — is probably closer to our side than the anti-gun side.

  23. Something that I’ve been wondering recently is this:

    Since the vast majority of these gun controllers want “universal background checks” why are they against using a CCW to bypass the background check?

    I can’t speak for every state in the Union but the states I’ve obtained a permit in had a longer process than simply filling out a 4473 and waiting a few minutes. If you’ll pass one you’ll pass the other and vice versa, so if you’re willing to plunk down the cash and wait the time on the CCW you will pass the 4473 and the 4473 becomes a waste of resources. Kinda like that TSA line at airports for frequent travelers willing to pay more and undergo a background check for a speedier trip through security.

    I suppose someone might argue that you could get the CCW permit and then do something bad and get your gun without a background check, but I’m not aware of any states that will allow you to continue having a permit after doing something that would get you flagged on a 4473 anyway so that’s kind of a bullshit argument.

    • I could be wrong about this, but it is my understanding that if I do something that will flag me as no longer eligible for my CCL, the OSBI will politely ask me to return the license. If I fail to do so, I believe they will come looking for it. So not much chance of getting a CCL, committing crimes, and then using the CCL to buy guns without the 4473. Of course, once a person has decided to become a criminal they no longer have to worry about background checks. Funny how that works.

    • “Since the vast majority of these gun controllers want “universal background checks” why are they against using a CCW to bypass the background check?”

      When you bypass the BC, you bypass the generation of a record with the name of the buyer-seller and serial number of the gun you will be confiscating in the future.

      As far as I’m concerned, a much better system is to get Pulp Fiction-style ‘Medieval’ on the ass of an individual who is a prohibited person in possession of a gun…

      • “When you bypass the BC, you bypass the generation of a record with the name of the buyer-seller and serial number of the gun you will be confiscating in the future.”

        Isn’t an FFL required by federal law to note in their bound book who they sold the gun to as well as the make, model and SN regardless of the requirement for a 4473 for that transaction?

        I’ve never lived anywhere where you could use your permit to avoid a background check so I don’t know how that works but it seems like even if there isn’t a law the seller would retain some record of the transaction for bookkeeping purposes. I mean, they don’t want the ATF agents showing up and finding a bunch of guns unaccounted for, right?

        • With my CCW I can buy all the guns I want & no BC is done because my CCW has already cleared me. Since my CCW is so stringent it is also good in 40 states, which is nice. Now just need the other 10 with national Recip. Just have fill out a 4473.

        • 4473 is filled out ,recorded and maintained in the records of the FFL selling the firearm, the same as a standard background check. The only difference is they don’t have to call it into the FBI NICs because the CHL holder already had a thorough background check ,finger printing, local law enforcement approval, etc. Depending on your state requirements.

  24. It’s not *complete* horseshit. They do mention – at the end – that John Lott exists.

    But enough of it is to consider it as fake news.

  25. Last I check, you normally pull “experts” from the industry in question.paleontologists for dinosaurs, IT specialists for cyber attacks and maybe, just maybe, firearms professionals for gun related pieces.

    Unless you’re just looking to spin you’re already biased political attack piece, of course.

  26. Newspapers serve an essential place in society. What else can be used to wrap fresh fish and then be used to clean up the scales, skin and guts?
    Academia trains journalists to be hired at an entry level job. After years of study and training, a college graduate is fully trained to write propaganda for the masses.

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