Bob Owens

The saddest truth in politics is that people get the leaders they deserve

Something funny happened on the way to tyranny

Written By: Bob - Dec• 31•12

I dropped my car off this morning at my mechanic’s, as the clutch appeared to be on its last legs. Being a beautiful morning in the mid-40s, I decided to walk home, and soak in some of the small-town downtown ambiance along the way. The sleepy antique stores were not seeing much business, and I nodded to the painting crew who was outlining the wooden window frames of the bakery in brilliant blue paint as I passed by.

Most of the downtown shops, in fact, weren’t doing much business except the two gun stores. I’d been in one several days ago to pick a .22LR for an article I’d be writing for Shooting Illustrated, and decided to stop in at the other to see what the current political environment had left behind.

There were no less than six clerks working feverishly with the dozen or so customers, so I simply stepped to the side and walked the aisles. The cases of ammunition that typically lined the far wall were picked to pieces. There was a 100-round case of .50 BMG, and cases of European shotshells suitable for small game. The .223 Remington, 5.56 NATO, 7.62×39, 7.62 NATO, and 7.62x54R had sold out long ago, along with the bulk 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP.

A few pump shotguns remained along with a smattering of deer rifles, single-shots, and longer double-barreled shotguns suitable only for trap or skeet. Even the semi-automatic .22LR rifles like Ruger 10/22s were gone, along with all but one BX-25 magazine.

The customers in the shop were picking through what remained; lever-action rifles, oddball shotguns, and the smattering of name-brand centerfire pistols. One man was attempting to trade in an antique double-barrel shotgun for something more current.

I did speak to one harried clerk, briefly.

They didn’t know when they’d be getting anything back in stock, from magazines to rifles to pistols. Manufacturers were running full-bore, but couldn’t come close to keeping up with market demand. It wasn’t just the AR-15s, the AK-pattern rifles, the M1As, and the FALs that were sold out. It really hit me when I realized that the World War-era M1 Garands , M1 carbines, and Enfield .303s were gone, along with every last shell. Ubiquitous Mosin-Nagants—of which every gun store always seems to have 10-20—were gone. So was their ammo. Only a dust free space marked their passing. I’ve never seen anything like it.

Every weapon of military utility designed within the past 100+ years was gone. This isn’t a society stocking up on certain guns because they fear they may be banned. This is a society preparing for war.

I wonder if this is what it felt like during the time of the Powder Alarm, and fear politicians both sides of the aisle are no more speaking the same language as most Americans as Gage was unable to think like the Colonials. There is an earnestness now on both sides, and a great chance for unintended consequences.

Tread carefully.

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  1. JP Kalishek says:

    hmm Kill the economy and then make grabs on guns. Some folks are hard pressed to stock up on the rifle of their choice if they are having issues feeding the family.

    I hate having conspiracy thoughts that sound like those from the left during GWB, but damned if they don’t keep coming with this administration.

  2. Phelps says:

    There is nothing so powerful as an idea whose time has come.

  3. Firehand says:

    Hit my local range this morning: 9:30am and there was a 30-45 minute wait for a lane. Lots of people buying stuff(not ARs or such, those were gone last week), and the reloading counter had a ‘1 bottle of each powder and 1 brick of each primers per customer’ limit.

    And I don’t think these people are buying stuff so they can turn it in…

    • NumberTwo says:

      Firehand, well put. Some of us were buying stuff to make sure we keep the stuff we already bought.

  4. Al Reasin says:

    More on the British gun control effort and the Powder Alarm here:

    Today we face a similar evolving situation on gun control. The 1994-2004 assault weapon ban didn’t do the trick for the progressives, so now a new and improved ban is in the making. If I take my 22 cal Ruger 10/22 semi-auto with a removable magazine and add a folding stock or a pistol grip it becomes an assault weapon requiring registration or maybe it is one of those banned firearms. We know from a slip of the tongue years ago that Mrs. Feinstein is for getting rid of all firearms in private hands.

    I talked to my US Representative’s local contact person and was told Sen. Feinstein’s proposal will fail in the House even if it passes in the Senate. While I don’t feel too comfortable about that, let’s assume that is the case. Then Obama, via an Executive Order, can implement it. As my constitutional lawyer fiend said, such an act is legal, even if it is unconstitutional; all laws, regulations and/or Executives Orders are de facto constitution and need to be stopped by congressional action or a court ruling. However, as with President Andrew Jackson and the “Trail of Tears”, even a SCOTUS ruling can be ignored and gotten away with no penalty such as impeachment and conviction.

    So Obama issues the Executive Order and proceeds to force registration, do we go into the scenario Mr. Owens presented the other day in his post, “What you’ll see in the rebellion”. God, I hope that is not necessary.

    We may be able to stop this whole effort if we go forth with the calls for demonstrations against this proposed law. Our 9-12 Tea Party rally with a million people going to DC and the smaller follow up rallies did not stop ObamaCare and that may have buoyed the arrogance of our government leaders. I have written on Facebook that the NRA needs to get off its butt with just lobbying congress and now become proactive. The NRA working with Freedom Works and regional and local TEA Party organizations can provide the organization expertises to stop this in Congress and to convince Obama what he is up against if he goes the Executive Order route. It is worth the effort, because the possible scenario if not successful in convincing this President would be disastrous for our country. If Obama started utilizing the National Defense Appropriations Act’s provision allowing the military to arrest citizens with indeterminate sentences and held with no charges in violation of the 5th Amendment, then all bets are off.

    One may not want or like ObamaCare, however it is not a basic constitutional right as is the 2nd Amendment. The emotional aspect, which I can see in myself and as an engineer I live a life of decisions based on facts and logic, will challenge citizens to remain non-violent if this gun ban become law. We know the eventual goal; as has happened in CA and NYC in the recent past, registration has become confiscation.

    We do not need a destructive 2nd American Revolution, especially with the external enemies we have in the world. There is a real need for a stable US to keep the world order from coming apart. Like it or not, the US is the one country that stands between an uneasy world with most of it at peace and worldwide anarchy. With modern WMD weapons, no one would be safe.

    • Steve Skubinna says:

      What happens if the NRA is declared a “terrorist organization,” and Wayne LaPierre is frogmarched away while the FBI confiscates membership rolls under warrant? While we’re at it, CTD, Cabela’s, J&G Sales and other online and brick and mortar retailers are visited by feds demanding records of ammo sales? After that they drop by every range, shooting club, and high school with a rifle team for those records.

      I wouldn’t expect the grabbers to move without first preparing the battlespace.

      • Al Reasin says:

        If they use extra-legal methods, then we will know where we stand. As with the colonials, we need to get organized just in case. The NRA and all other organizations can get a backbone and refuse to comply. Either we hang together or we will hang separately.

        Years ago, I worked with whose ex was stalking her. I told her what I thought she needed to do. Something that in part we did years earlier when a neighbor’s life was threatened by an ex.

        The lady I worked with had done all the things one does to document the assaults and stalking including a court order. Yet he continued to try to get into her house. I told her to buy a 20 gauge shotgun and kill him the next time, because he had no respect for the rule of law and would eventually kill her. When government fails to protect you or aid the attacks on you, then it is up to you to do what you need to do for self protection.

        In her case, I left the job and never found out what, if anything happened. And my neighbor’s ex got the message and never was a threat again. I would think it would have been hard to convict or even prosecute her if she did what I suggested; she could show that society and government had failed her.

        Many American’s I know can’t believe it can happen here; historically even President Wilson was not reported as arrogant as Obama. Of course Wilson in 1919 had a stroke that may have prevented him from going any further than his Sedition Acts. BTW, as with Adam’s Alien and Sedition Acts, the Acts were never declared directly unconstitutional just as the NDAA arrest provision has not reached the SCOTUS.

      • Waldo says:

        Steve I suspect the NRA will cave in and hand that over long before they get declared a tairist organization. (deliberate misspelling of terrorist, think “Texax accent”).

        Wouldn’t be the first time they sold people who believe in the 2nd Amendment (not hunters and sportsmens rights) down the river.

  5. […] Update! They really do expect us all to just sit back and comply. They are badly mistaken. […]

  6. Layman says:

    In another time and place a certain group of men were surrounded by an enemy bent on destroying them to the very last man. Frozen, little or no food,little or no ammunition, out gunned, out manned, and completely isolated from any ground support these men took it upon themselves to stand and fight.

    Their commanding officer was given an ultimatum; surrender yourselves and your weapons or be obliterated. His famous one word reply was enough to embolden the battling bastards of Bastogne to hold their ground, to never retreat, never surrender.


  7. musashi says:

    “They” will never use “extra-legal” methods. “They” always follow the laws they pass.

  8. Cowboy says:

    I went down to see pops in his southwestern Virginia abode. We hit the gunshop yesterday, and all I can say was it was pure madness. Nowhere to park outside, nowhere to move once inside. Everything was either picked over or being in the process of getting picked over. A big mix of people were in there, too. Male, female, young, old, white, black. Everybody was arming up. We don’t have your soccer mom set down here, tho. These were mainly country and small town folk. Salt of the earth. Well, if it was any indication, the earth is now armed.

  9. Uncle Veteran says:

    It seems a bit spooky to me … esp the thought of grabbing membership rolls or declaring an organization terrorist.

    I wonder, really, if Americans actually have it in them to rise up, and repel a tyranny via lawful means or something more than that.

    • Waldo says:

      I have wondered this myself for some time now. Not just about 2nd amendment issues but some of the other probs we have in this country. For example, so much of manufacturing jobs and various other jobs being outsourced overseas. They called people who were vehemently opposed to NAFTA and GATT back in the 90’s wackos, isolationists, etc. too.

      I question whether we have the courage.

      • Naturalist says:

        Get ready for APEC, Asian-Pacific rim member countries, including the US, are currently negotiating FTAAP, Free-Trade Area of the Asian-Pacific. I’m sure we’ll be on the short-end of this stick too. And all this in light of a recession/depression.

  10. Paul says:

    I would like to see some opinions here, about “grabbing” Membership rolls, such as NRA, USCCA, etc. Every time we post comments or read a news letter about gun control, Isn’t that giving away our name and location just as bad as a muzzle flash in the dark?

    • Naturalist says:

      Without a doubt, Paul. Think NSA baby!

    • Anonymous says:

      All the technology already exists to automatically crawl the web for “hostile” comments, automatically determine the name of the commenter, automatically match that name to a cell phone, automatically geolocate that cell phone, and finally automatically dispatch an armed drone to eliminate the commenter.

      • obsidian says:

        The first drone strike approved by the POTUS would make it quite clear how the federal government see us, as slaves and as targets.
        That my friend would be the start of a serious war, much like that Fort In South Carolina that fired the first shots of the civil war.

      • Bill says:


        And if they’re as insane as to go that far, why wouldn’t they just have the news report it as a gas explosion? How would you know otherwise?

      • a concerned lady says:

        I wholeheartedly agree that if “they” choose to eradicate a choice few of us via drones, they will fabricate a viable story for how “we” met with an untimely death. Brakes failed, gas leak, etc. This govt has overstepped its boundaries and is going to great lengths to work us up over certain topics to blindside us from the real issues, such as complete & total control over Americans. It is time for loyalists to the constitution to take a stand and refuse to be ignored any further.

  11. obsidian says:

    I heard a man looking to buy our old car saying, We would have to fight Canadian and Mexican troops as well as UN blue helmets most likely sent from Chinese Army units, and their tanks. yes, their governments would pile on to keep the POTUS in power and settle the violence just as they did in Libya.
    We would literally be fighting the entire NATO alliance plus some.
    The thing is a great many American’s seem absolutely eager for this to happen. people are mad as hell and want to inflict some pay back I think for all the problems we have right now. Are Americans really that eager to see a dictator on a stick as in gaddafy happen to our leaders?
    perhaps 53% are.
    I love my country and wish it wasn’t so but I am not everybody and can do nothing since my vote was made worthless by democrat voter fraud.

  12. FrankInFL says:

    I wrote “Tipping Point” as fiction, but I’m perfectly okay with idiots turning it into a documentary…

  13. PJ says:

    People are not thinking things through. It doesn’t matter if membership rolls are grabbed. The government already knows who the discontented ones are. The government already has a pretty good idea who has the guns too (4473’s)…

    That doesn’t matter. The government’s problem is that there are so many. They are not going to nip this in the bud. If they try something, it’s war.

    The rulers must think they have no possibility of facing the “Mussolini solution”; they look at all the men and equipment at their command. But those men are not automatons. They come from the same population the government will want them to crush.

  14. MamaLiberty says:

    Liberty is worth dying for. It is just so much more worth LIVING for.

    Those who want to destroy liberty have to decide for themselves if that destruction is worth dying for.

    All they have to do is leave us alone… Their choice.

  15. Tango says:

    Over the past few weeks I started hearing the Left change their description of semi-automatic rifles with “evil” features and black finishes from “assault weapons” to “weapons of war”, assumably to gin up more support for a ban on their possession by “civilians”.

    Their modification of language isn’t new or surprising. Remember “Saturday night specials”, “cop killer bullets”, “sporting” and “high capacity”? All terms used by the leftists to fractionalize firearms owners from each other over the years.

    As the descendant of a Minuteman and Revolutionary War veteran I’m comfortable with the term “weapon of war”, as it again frames the 2A in a context that has nothing to do with hunting, nothing to do with “sporting”, and everything to do with freedom – an area the leftists want nothing to do with.

    Want to rename a “regular” “civilian” semi-automatics AR15 to be a “weapon of war” in your own personal jihad against our rights, Congressman, Senator or other elected or appointed government official?

    You took an Oath to “support and defend the Constitution” – as did I – without picking and choosing which parts you would and would not support or defend. To us that Oath wasn’t a campaign promise, mere words said to somebody along the way to your place in the Capitol. To us that Oath is a sacred bond, one that extends beyond our term of service and binds us to our brothers in arms from the 1700’s until the end of time.

    Don’t go against your Oath, and stop infringing our Rights – even “just a little”, and don’t try to enact legislation reminiscent of Gage’s disarmament order circa April 1775.

    Then guess what?

    That regular, semi-automatic AR15 you decided to call a “weapon of war”?

    It won’t be.

  16. John Q. Public says:

    There is an enumerated list of federal US Constitutional violations. This list is long, accurate and staggeringly honest. From the lowly 100 watt light bulb manufacture ban, to agencies that write laws, circumventing congress. People are tired of a government that does not follow it’s own charter, but rather violates the US Constitution “at will” under the guise of benevolence.

    Americans put up with it because it’s creeping nature is largely unintrusive to one’s personal affairs. However, attempts at disarmament are where patriots draw the line. Americans will stand up to such a government, and they will prevail.

  17. Eli says:

    I hope those proclaiming this “line in the sand” understand the ramifications of that. It quite literally means shooting, or at least being prepared to shoot, your fellow countrymen. But if it must be, then sooner rather than later.