GOP Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma is retiring this year. But he’s not shy and retiring. Coburn has released his 100-page “wastebook” detailing some of the more ridiculous ways Uncle Sam spends your hard-earned money. Needless to say, cnn.com starts its story on Coburn’s revelations with the three most absurd examples: “Monkeys taught how to gamble and play video games. People paid to watch grass grow. Swedish massages given to rabbits.” I was kind of hoping the feds gave Swedish meatballs to the rabbits, but that’s just me. Anyway, ammo. Seems the Pentagon was a bit ambitious and/or lackadaisical in its procurement process . . .
The U.S. recently air-dropped arms and ammo to Kurdish forces fighting ISIS in Kobane, Syria. This despite/because of the Turkish government’s refusal to allow land deliveries of arms to the Syrian Kurds, linked as they are with Turkey’s outlawed rebel Kurdistan Workers’ Party. The air-drop riled the Turks to the point where U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry had to reassure Turkey that it was a one-off. While he was at it, Barack’s billionaire majordomo had to admit to the media that some of those arms will end up in the hands of people who want to see the U.S. destroyed. But it would have been “irresponsible of us, as well as morally very difficult, to turn our back on a community fighting ISIL.” Speaking of irresponsible . . .
Once again, Hornady Ammunition is jumping the gun, releasing 2015 product info well before anyone starts singing Auld Lang Syne. The Big Red H (as Pigman is wont to call it) has fashioned a new line of lead-free Full Boar ammo using monolithic copper-alloy GMX bullets that deliver “95+% weight retention and uniform, controlled expansion for unmatched terminal performance on the toughest game.” Note to politicians who think ARs are not hunting guns: Full Boar will be available in all the popular hunting calibers, which includes .223 at $29.95 per box of 20. But really, 6.8 please. Hornady’s other new line is . . .
EDC = Every Day Carry gun. That’s the firearm you depend on for stopping an imminent threat of death or grievous bodily harm, when imminence in imminent. What you feed it may not be a matter of life or death, but it might. Which is why most people who carry a gun are plenty picky about their carry ammo. One theory: carry what cops carry. Our man Mass recommends HST, Golden Saber, Gold Dot and Winchester Ranger. I carry Critical Defense. What’s in YOUR EDC? And how did you decide on that round?
We’ve been running a series of ammunition consistency tests for years here at TTAG, and the results have been surprising. There are some runaway winners, but for the most part everyone (even the “premium” brands) seems to be clustered around the same level of consistency. It’s a state of affairs that one new company is hoping to change in the United States, and they are making some big claims about their accuracy — a 1/2 MoA guarantee with each box. It’s something we’ve been invited to witness in person, and we’ll be reporting on it as soon as we see those results for ourselves. In the meantime, here’s their press release . . .
I stumbled across a letter to the editor at mariettatimes.com wherein one Sam Ludtman claimed that the United Nations wants to ban lead ammunition. “The United Nations wants to ban the use of lead ammunition for firearms worldwide, discussing the possibility of imposing sanctions against smelters and manufacturers of lead bullets or outright bans during the upcoming Nov. 4 to 9 U.N. Convention On Migratory Species [CMS] in Quito, Ecuador. Material for the meeting suggests that ‘voluntary approaches to restricting use of lead ammunition’ do not work on a national level and for a proposed ban to work, a ‘range of societal issues’ would need to be addressed, including ‘philosophical issues regarding gun rights and increased government oversight of shooting.'” Despite the fact that the story appeared on infowars.com, it seems semi-legit. It included this . . .
Reader JWT writes:
RF, a few friends, and I were shooting out on my range at a dueling tree this last weekend. After having to shoot one steel paddle no less than 4 times with my 9mm service pistol to get the paddle to swing, I commented on how much I hated the 9mm, and the 5.56 NATO as well, and how I had never seen a single shot kill from those rounds, even at close ranges, and even from head shots. Robert asked “seen a few people shot have you?”, I responded, “hundreds”. Then he asked me to share . . .
I got a chance to test a borrowed FN Five-seveN pistol, which shoots the controversial 5.7x28mm cartridge. A lot has been written about the Five-seveN and the 5.7x28mm caliber, so I’ll leave the Googling to the reader to find out more. As an introduction, I’ll just say that the 5.7x28mm was introduced as an alternative to the 9mm. It’s a little bullet, about the size and weight of a .22lr or .22 Magnum, but driven to higher velocities, which brings its kinetic energy up closer to that of a 9mm . . .
“In its campaign across northern Syria and Iraq, the jihadist group Islamic State has been using ammunition from the United States and other countries that have been supporting the regional security forces fighting the group,” C.J. Chivers reports. Drawing on data compiled by Conflict Armament Research, the New York Times correspondent concludes that the analysis of ISIS’ ammo “carries an implicit warning for policy makers and advocates of intervention.” Which will, no doubt, be ignored. Just like the fact that Mexican cartels use “assault rifles” originally sold to the Mexican Army and police with the blessing, indeed financial support of the U.S. government. Anyway, “Ammunition transferred into Syria and Iraq to help stabilize governments has instead passed from the governments to the jihadists, helping to fuel the Islamic State’s rise and persistent combat power. Rifle cartridges from the United States, the sample shows, have played a significant role.” Specifically . . .
Major Van E. Harl USAF Ret. writes [via ammoland.com]
I am going to admit that for no good reason I have in the past been a bit of a gun snob when it comes to the 30-30 Winchester rifle cartridge. I was new to the firearms business, right out of college, working at a gun shop in the Chicago area. First off, you could not even hunt with a rifle in Illinois so I am not sure what all the concern was about rifle calibers. Perhaps in the back of every customer’s mind they were someday going to be headed out west to take an elk at 1000 yards off-hand. These upscale Chicago hunters could not envision taking a moose in Montana with a lever-action cowboy gun known as a “30-30 deer rifle.” Some how I sort of fell into that thought process and dismissed the venerable 30-30 Winchester cartridge for over 35 years . . .
“I’ve never been much into large conspiracies–that is, until now,” Brian Buru writes at gunnews.com writes. “In talking with a few WalMart managers (who happen to be relatives), I can say that WalMart is in fact starting to hoard .22 long rifle ammunition from their normal suppliers. I can also confirm that it is very purpose-driven. WalMart is planning one of the greatest marketing coups in history of marketing. They are saving all their .22 long rifle ammunition to attract one specific marketing demographic: Men, on the accursed Black Friday (The big sale night and/or day after Thanksgiving). Black Friday is often so important to retailers’ bottom lines that some would go out of business entirely if it were not for the masses of people coming in.” Yes, well, my LGS (Sportsman’s Finest) is still restricting customers to two boxes. What’s the sitch in your neck of the woods? [h/t SS]
Well, that’s mildly interesting! I love revolvers, but — 9mm in a revolver has never made much sense to me. It’s rimless, meaning you need moon clips, and the gun ends up being about 4 ounces heavier than the .38 Special +P version. That’s a pretty hefty difference, going from 13.5 to 17.5 ounces. Ballistically . . .