Bob Owens

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

Gutenberg’s nuke

Written By: Bob - Jan• 22•13

Johannes Gensfleisch zur Laden zum Gutenberg was a fascinating man. He learned the art and the trade of goldsmithing from his father, spent some time in a university, and was known to have joined the Strasbourg militia, but none of that made him famous. No, the name of Gutenberg is synonymous with his great invention, movable type printing, around 1439.

His advances in press technology, inks, and typography meant that texts could now be printed rapidly and economically, instead of painstakingly copied by hand. Gutenberg’s inventions were the greatest leap in human communication since the invention of language and the alphabet, and because of his efforts, the mass production of portable information became affordable for the first time.

His work was so groundbreaking that that printing technology he created had changed little when Benjamin Franklin joined the printing trade as an apprentice to his brother James in 1718, and it was this same basic technology that was used to report the battles of our Revolutionary War.

Things changed quite a bit more over the next 230 years.

Communications revolutions are now continuous and instantaneous, fickle and every changing, but always expanding. We still have printed news, but it is transmitted digitally first, and digital seems to be our future. Television, telephone, Facebook, Twitter, web sites, and RSS feeds are no longer passive. We can push or pull data around the world instantly, watch it go viral, or disappear into the void. If a printing press were a musket, the Internet is Gutenberg’s nuclear weapon.

The Founding Fathers had no possible way of predicting the breadth, depth, speed, or noise of modern communications when they wrote the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, but they made it last by enshrining principles over technology or technique.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Freedom of speech and of the press is a beautiful thing, and despite the unforeseen developments in high speed printing and instantaneous global dissemination of both the beautiful and the perverse, the individual right of the freedom of speech has never been seriously questioned in this nation, because of the principles we hold dear. We’ve maintained that for people to remain free, information must remain free, and we’ve been the most prosperous nation in human history largely as a result of honoring these first principles.

Why is it then, that the following constitutional amendment, though again directed towards crucial individual rights, less complex in structure, and straightforward in design, is now under attack?

A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

Grown men, who present themselves educated beings, attempt to claim that they have the right to infringe up the individual right to bear weapons in clear defiance of the Amendment, even though we seek to exercise our rights merely with evolutionary arms (modern small arms), not revolutionary arms (stealth fighters, rail guns, laser weapons, ICBMs).

Are our principles so fickle and flighty that they change from one Amendment to the next?

No, sir.

No, madam.

They do not.

In demanding our constitutional right to arms, we do so not for sport or entertainment, though sporting applications and entertainment can be had from those arms. We demand that our pre-existing natural rights of defense, boldly supported in the Second Amendment, be respected so that we can use it for its specific purpose of arming the citizenry in their own best defense against tyrants both foreign and domestic.

The 20th Century nearly drown in rivers of blood created by tyrants, with more than 100 262 million souls exterminated by their own governments as a matter of political convenience, to rid their cultures of dissenting thought and ideas.

They accomplished this, in each and every instance, by passing gun control laws for “public safety” first.

They began with restrictions, then  registration, and finally confiscation. Once that occurred, and the government had the unquestioned monopoly of violence and no chance to revolt, then mass graves were dug, and bodies of undesirables filled the earth.

We demand for defense to keep the weapons the Founders meant us to have, the same level of arms that the soldiers of our day have, from the rifles, to pistols, to shotguns and other weapons of contemporary military utility.

Quite frankly, 20th Century Americans gave up far too much by allowing the National Firearms Act of 1934, the Gun Control Act of 1968, and the Hughes Amendment to the Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986. All of these laws fly in the face of “original intent” and should be struck down accordingly.

As long as military units have access to pistols, assault rifles, and machine guns, so should law-abiding American citizens.

Perhaps it is time to push back, and reclaim what is ours.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.


  1. LordChamp says:

    It’s well past time! As the citizenry is awakening, now is the time for that rollback. Time to go on the offensive in stead of just defending. Time to reclaim all that has been lost, not only in the area of the 2nd Amendment but in ALL the entire Founding Documents.

  2. smitty says:

    “The 20th Century nearly drown in rivers of blood created by tyrants, with more than 100 million souls exterminated by their own governments as a matter of political convenience, to rid their cultures of dissenting thought and ideas.”

    The figure 100 million appears to vastly understate things…

    Democide is murder by government.

    R. J. Rummel has done extensive research.

    His research shows that the death toll from democide is far greater than the death toll from war. After studying over 8,000 reports of government-caused deaths, Rummel estimates that there have been 262 million victims of democide in the last century. According to his figures, six times as many people have died from the inflictions of people working for governments than have died in battle.

  3. Viktor says:

    A compelling case could be made that all of these laws fly in the face of “original intent” and should be struck down accordingly.

    Forgive me for being pedantic here; but you should eliminate the words “a compelling case could be made that”.

    A compelling case HAS BEEN made …. by you … just now. And in previous posts. And, no doubt, in future posts.

    My father has, to this day, only passing familiarity with his own native language (English); nevertheless, he once gave me a good piece of writing advice, which was this: “don’t ever write the words ‘in my opinion’, anyone reading already knows that it’s your opinion; just state it, … forcefully.”

  4. Robert says:

    No argument from me regarding the repeal of those acts. But undoing the push for statism that began a century ago is no mean task — it’s uphill and into the wind all the way. And it’ll probably take the rest of our lives to bring about.

    And, frankly, that’s the best case. Destroying statism could happen a lot quicker, but I suspect only with a general societal and economic collapse. And while that event could bring about a restoration of the Republic, the odds of that happening don’t look good.

  5. Klingonwork says:

    Yes it is time to push back, and whereas der Fuehrer was tip toeing through the water of the Rubicon, with no re-election hanging over his head, der Fuehrer is drunk with power and will now start runnnig through the water. How many democrats will wake up to this mad man? I agree, some event but perhaps not catastrophic will happen to spark the 2nd American revolution. I stand at the bridge in Concord…not one more inch will they get.

    • Comrade X says:

      For myself I am in the bushes along the Concord road waiting for their return to Boston, I will hit and I will run and I will hit and I will run; over and over; again & again until either I am dead or they give up and when my TAVOR hits the ground there will be another son to pick it up to continue in my stead!

      • Klingonwork says:

        Hit and run, and more and more patriots will join us along the way. There is already rebellion among the county sheriffs and some law enforcement which suggests to me there are many in the military now who will not follow orders to fire on civilians, but will also say enough is enough. God help us all for what is coming.

        Not one more inch will I give…remember Captain John Parker.

  6. Bill says:

    In other news: NY continues powering through the 4th amendment like a freight-train full-throttle down the side of Mt. Everest with only a water ballon in its way.

    NYC testing tetrahertz scanners to automatically scan for and detect guns.

  7. John P. Squibob says:

    Are our principles so fickle and flighty that they change from one Amendment to the next?

    Their principles, at least in their mind, are not flighty and fickle. Who can be allowed to exercise freedom of speech and of the press, and the right to bear arms is to be determined by the self-appointed enlightened class. For the 1st Amendment, that would be limited to those such as graduates from the Columbia School of Journalism. For the 2nd, law enforcement officials and the military.

    For the great unwashed such as you, Mr. Owens and myself, not so much.

    Kind regards,

  8. Mister Ron says:

    Strictly speaking, we even have a constitutional right to own a cannon, or a tank, or a nuke. Nobody is seriously asking for these, and privately owned nukes would be a Very Bad Thing indeed. But if we as a nation (not just the self-appointed elites) really want to modify our 2nd Amendment right in any way, large or small, whether in terms of nukes or of pea shooters, there is a legal way to do it: amend the amendment, if you can get the votes. But don’t trample on it with unconstitutional laws and doubly unconstitutional executive orders.

  9. Scott B says:

    Taking the ball and running with it – suppose:

    The National Radio Act of 1934 established minimum antenna lengths and required a $200 tax for volume controls and tuner knobs.

    The TV Control Act of 1968 required registration for all TV sets and other communication devices. Remote controls banned.

    The Hughes Amendment of 1986 restricted all computers, word processors, and other communications devices manufactured after that date to military and law enforcement use only. Journalists would be out $20k for an IBM Selectric!

    Thanx, Bob for your thought provoking articles!

  10. R7 Rocket says:

    “The MicroGravity Foundry is the first 3D printer that creates high-density high-strength metal components even in zero gravity,” said Stephen Covey, a co-Founder of DSI and inventor of the process. “Other metal 3D printers sinter powdered metal, which requires a gravity field and leaves a porous structure, or they use low-melting point metals with less strength.”

    Mars missions also would be safer with a MicroGravity Foundry on board to print replacements for broken parts, or to create brand new parts invented after the expedition was on its way to the Red Planet.

    The technology that will enable self sufficiency on off-Earth colonies is the same technology that will render gun control completely obsolete.

  11. cloaked in mystery says:

    I wonder how sensitive the terrahertz scanners are to overload…. a short powerful pulse could potentialy damage them without causing enough heating to harm people.

    the fancier the toys, the easier they are to break, and thanks to the poor economy worsened by govt luddites, there are alot of pissed off out of work engineers.

    • Bill says:

      Good question. I’m not particularly thrilled with the idea of something that can damage DNA doing random automated scans.

  12. Chris Maddox says:

    I think if it were rephrased into modern parlance it would be more understandable.
    “… a militia that can kick butt, being necessary to the security of a free state …”
    Unfortunately, the meaning of words have changed over time for some reason.
    Gee, I wonder why?
    Remember the constitution is for the people, not professors.

  13. The facts of the matter are:

    1) Gun violence is out of hand in the United States of America

    2) The proliferation of guns is being fed by the fear of “a tyrannical government” or “the impending assault by ‘the Others’ on ‘real Americans'”.

    3) The United States government has no means by law of by fiat of the Executive Branch to confiscate assault weapons already in the hands of owners anymore than they can confiscate all the semiautomatic pistols.

    4) Most of this fear comes from the Conservative blogosphere and talk radio pundits who have convinced you that Liberalism is a means to and end that will have “real Americans” overrun by “the Other.”

    5) While America is moving toward Socialism in a classic form this should not be fear especially if you are over the age of 50, conservative and have a job.

    We, Ourselves of the Collective look forward to sharing Our thoughts in the Future.

    Qu’ul cuda praedex nihil!

    • MI-copperhead says:

      I’ll give you of the “Collective” the short version. If you try to take my guns I’ll kill you.

      Sic semper tyrannis !