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“I’m calling for a tit-for-tat policy. If the number one and number two handguns in America [Austria’s Glock and Croatia’s XD] are from European countries that totally prohibit U.S.-made handguns, then we should reciprocate. We will have a perfect mirror. We’ll follow whatever they do. If their regulations loosen, ours will loosen. If theirs become more strict, ours will become equally strict. We’ll do the same as they do. Tit-for-tat.” Ruger CEO Mike Fifer said to Cameron Hopkins, writer of the NRA blog Industry Insider.  “When Hopkins tries to ease Fifer out of the hole he’s dug, the Ruger suit digs deeper . . .

I respectfully point out that free trade is not an issue that any one industry can affect because America’s trade polices are a complex web of issues that span everything from farm subsidies to banana tariffs.

“I’m not talking about tariffs or taxes. I’m referring to regulations that prohibit us from selling into a country that has no such restriction to stop them from selling to us. A simple tit-for-tat policy would level the playing field for all of us,” the former Naval Academy graduate said.

While Fifer’s fightin’ words are sure to motivate Ruger’s “base,” shareholders will not be well pleased. And now you know why guys like Fifer have PR handlers.

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  1. Wow. Anybody read Tom Clancy? In one of his Jack Ryan books (I don't remember which one), a full-out war with Japan was caused by an identical act. Because Japan threw up trade restrictions on automobiles, a U.S. Senator reacted to a high-profile, fatal auto accident (where a defective, Japanese-made gas tank was at fault) with a "Reciprocity Act." The act forced importers to do to Japanese cars, the same thing that they did to ours. This triggered a crisis in the Japanese stock market, and encouraged the Japanese manufacturers (who controlled the Japanese government) to declare war on the United States. It was a great read. Now I'm not suggesting that playing hardball with Austria and Croatia would have the same effect, but it is smart to consider the ramifications of any action, and realize that the Law of Unintended Consequences is a cruel mistress.

    Keep in mind, too, that the market for guns in the U.S. is…well…huge. I don't have any figures on the market for guns in Austria and Croatia, but I suspect that it's a wee bit smaller than the one here. Given that, Fifer's concerns sound more like envy of a more-successful competitor than a legit concern.

    • Just imagine applying the same concept to immigration policy. If Mexico would jail anyone who entered Mexico without permission would be jailed, tried, and then imprisoned, and then boot them out when they have repaid their debt to society.

      Anchor babies? Doesn’t happen in the majority of countries. If a child is born to parent(s) who are legal visitors, when the period ends, the parents have a medical certificate of live birth, all leave. When the child reaches the age of majority of the country of birth, the can APPLY for citizenship if they want to, but the country of birth is not required to approve them. And, if they do approve citizenship for the child, the parents are not included.

  2. Moreover, aren't the Croatia XD sales winding up profiting an Illinois competitor company anyway?

  3. This would be the same Ruger that cynically supported the assault weapons and magazine bans in 1994 because they thought it would suppress their foreign (read: Chinese AK and SKS) competition, and because their only centerfire semi auto (the Mini-14 and Mini-30) would not be subject to the ban, right?

    So why am I not surprised?

    Also, doesn't Glock have a factory in the US? I know Beretta was required to build one here in order to sell the M9 and I presume Sig-Sauer has one as well since the Sig P226 A/K/A the M11 Pistol has been in the US military inventory since at least the early 90's to my certain knowledge.

    So (at the risk of crossing over to Robert's other former site, TTAC) is Ruger now taking business advice from GM and Chrysler by suggesting we use the law to beat down their import competition?

  4. Since when does the European Union not allow American made guns? More likely, the US is actively preventing exports pretty much anywhere with the super smart & effective ITAR regulations. How do I know? I am from Europe and there are plenty US mate firearms available here in the EU. And the only one limiting sales overseas is US. Can anyone clarify this Ruger brainfart?

  5. ruger ceo needs to go F*CK himself. why does glock have to suffer for what their politicians are doing?

  6. Trade is the acceptance of goods and foods from foreign sources to be sold in the U.S. marketplace. America trades with several countries and complies with those countries laws in regards to trade. I believe that trade is a 1 for 1 not the current 1 of our items accepted for 100 of some other countries products. This should apply to firearms as well.

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