Our Watcher’s Council Nominations – Reckless And Careless Edition

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

This week, The Pirate’s Cove, Sharia Unveiled, and Gates Of Vienna earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (mandatory, but of course it won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out on Wednesday morning

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week….

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!And don’t forget to tune in Friday for the results!

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Our Watcher’s Council Nominations – Reckless And Careless Edition


Article written by: Tom White

Our Watcher’s Council Nominations – Reckless And Careless Edition

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

This week, The Pirate’s Cove, Sharia Unveiled, and Gates Of Vienna earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (mandatory, but of course it won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out on Wednesday morning

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week….

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!And don’t forget to tune in Friday for the results!

Is Scottish Labour About to Embrace Independence?

An interesting article today in The National (A Scottish newspaper dedicated to independence) suggests a solution to the Scottish (and perhaps even Northern Irish) EU issue:  A federal UK.

After a poll published yesterday was the third since Thursday’s Brexit vote to indicate a majority of voters north of the Border were now in favour of a Yes vote in the event of indyref2, interventions from Ian Murray and Margaret Curran suggested the party could be on course to review its long-established opposition to independence.

***

Murray, who resigned from Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow cabinet at the weekend, said all options were being explored to protect Scotland’s EU membership – including support for another independence referendum.

This is huge.  And there is ample precedent for it:  Canada and Ireland.  The solution to independent status for Scotland (I am not sure about Northern Ireland – that is a subject I am pondering) is dominion or a Scottish Free State using the 1922 Treaty that ended the civil war in Ireland.

The Queen would still be the head of state, the pound would be the currency (those beautiful Clydesdale Bank notes might be the choice of a free Scotland), Scotland would have a UN seat, be in the EU if they insist, conduct their own foreign policy, their own flag, Olympic team and in every other way be sovereign over their own destiny.  Since it would require a second referendum for Scotland to become a republic after the Free State is established there would be respect for tradition and institutions.

I suggested this before!


Article written by: Elwood "Sandy" Sanders

The Donut Hole in the Yard is about to Look Like the Meteor Crater! YEA! McDonnell Conviction Vacated!

I’m not sure what to do with myself these days!

Since Thursday PM we have had:

  • BREXIT!
  • The fallout from Brexit:  PM Cameron is out, Labour leader Corbyn seems headed that way and Labour in turmoil – and Scotland may well be independent at last!
  • Globalists on the run for a few days!
  • Curling Club of VA wins regional arena championship!
  • Chile wins the Copa America!
  • And NOW:  Former Governor McDonnell’s convictions vacated!

At this rate, we need about eight more countries to leave the EU!  The donut hole in my yard looks like Meteor Crater!

Now the Fourth Circuit will decide after a full briefing whether to decide if the convictions were legally sufficient (did they meet the bare legal standard of evidence to uphold the jury’s verdict as to each count; it takes very little evidence to do that) or not?  If not, no new charges.  If so, McDonnell gets a new trial.  My prediction:  The Fourth Circuit will knock out some charges, remand back the rest to the trial court and by that time it gets back to the District Court, there will be a new US Attorney in Richmond who will decide there are too many meth labs, heroin rings and terrorists to bother with this issue.

I am thankful – I did pray a lot for this matter – it was a miscarriage of justice to condemn Bob McDonnell as a crook (stupid yes!  But if stupid were a crime, most of us would be busting rocks) and it appears the SCOTUS was perhaps a bit skeptical:

There is no doubt that this case is distasteful; it may be worse than that. But our concern is not with tawdry tales of Ferraris, Rolexes, and ball gowns. It is instead with the broader legal implications of the Government’s boundless interpretation of the federal bribery statute.  (Slip Opinion, pg. 28)
The case is not over; keep praying and you can still give money to the Restoration Fund if you choose.

Article written by: Elwood "Sandy" Sanders

Forum: What Was Your Reaction To Donald Trump’s Speech This Week?

Every week on Monday, the Council, members of the Watcher’s Council Community and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week’s question: What Was Your Reaction To Donald Trump’s Speech This Week?

Don Surber :My reaction, courtesy of the late Mister James Brown :

GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD: Powerful meds for Americans!

Trump nailed HRC’s hair to the floor so tight – she’s unable to even blink!

“The Hillary Clinton foreign policy has cost America thousands of lives and trillions of dollars – and unleashed ISIS across the world. No Secretary of State has been more wrong, more often, and in more places than Hillary Clinton. Her decisions spread death, destruction and terrorism everywhere she touched.”

Like a torpedo strike, the speech blasted great gaping holes in HRC’s curious blend of failed progressivism, unbridled globalism and self enriching international crony socialism that may very well be criminal.

Trump’s first 100 Days agenda should totally close the deal with many including any stand offish cats.

 Stately McDaniel Manor: The Republican Party has a well-deserved reputation of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. The “Stupid Party,” routinely violates Ronald Reagan’s 11 th Commandment, and brilliantly attacks its own,leaving Democrats unscathed. But this election year, Donald Trump may serve as a Republican red on red force multiplier beyond imagination.

For perhaps the first time since his campaign began, Trump delivered a professional, rational, and necessary speech in which he actually attacked Hillary Clinton by telling the truth about her. What’s that you say? He’s done that before? Yes, but not consistently, coherently, and primarily by tweeting.

Trump’s biggest problem thus far, beside the fact that he is a dangerous narcissist, is that his entire focus has been on maintaining the purity of being Donald Trump. He absolutely, pig-headedly refuses to adapt to the demands of a presidential campaign. He does not work and play well with others, and behaves like a cheap, prickly street thug: “who you lookin’ at? You dissin’ me? You dissin’ me?!” This leads him to continually go off message– as though he has a consistent, coherent message from which to deviate– attacking primarily potential friends and supporters, including Republicans of all stripes, and ignoring his actual political enemies. He whines that this person, or that group, hasn’t been nice to him or treated him with proper respect. He threatens to take his marbles and go home if he isn’t treated in the manner to which he has become accustomed.

Grow the hell up, Trump.

He seems incapable of realizing that the thousands that come to his rallies are already in the bag. He doesn’t know that their numbers aren’t sufficient to elect him president, and that it is the far, far larger numbers of Americans that he never sees that he must convince to vote for him. He thinks he can get away with ignoring the Republican Party and he can win without it, despite the fact that he has built no national mechanisms to get out the vote and November is coming–fast.

Trump thinks vacuous slogans like “make America great again,” are all he needs. How will you make America great again Mr. Trump? “I’ll make America so great you won’t believe it!” But how? “Because I will; you’ll see.”

Part of his arrogance has been his insistence on not using a teleprompter, on winging it onstage, which at this stage of the campaign ensures not only that he won’t consistently communicate coherent, rational policies and principle, he’ll ramble, make idiotic gaffes, and fail to effectively define Hillary Clinton, the most corrupt, weak, and dangerous candidate the Democrats may have ever put forth. Trump need not use a teleprompter all the time– Ronald Reagan often spoke from notes he wrote — but Trump needs it. That he is not a professional politician has aided him to this point, but no longer.

The speech was a good start. It framed Hillary Clinton as the liar, criminal and national security disaster she already is, but those messages must be driven home again and again and again, consistently, every day, every week, not only with speeches, but clever ads.

Trump can’t do it himself. He has no consistent principles that inform policies. His life has been dedicated to deal making, to doing whatever is necessary to make more and more money. Those skills can be an asset for any president, but only if he makes the adjustments necessary to obtain advantage for America instead of Trump. It’s time to discover those principles, to pledge belief in and adherence to those policies, and to shut down the ego machine and spin up the political machine.

It’s time, over and over again, and absolutely consistently, to tell America exactly how Trump intends to make America great again. If Trump can’t do that, he’ll lead the Stupid Party into being the Insanely, Terminally Stupid Party. We’ll end up with a progressive Supreme Court, a Progressive Congress, and a Progressive President.

The Republicans have been able to do almost nothing when they hold majority control of Congress. If they lose even one house, they’ll have the perfect excuse to do nothing but help Progressives enact their agenda. America will be no more, but by all that is holy, Trump will still be, pure and shining, Trump.

He needs to decide– yesterday– which is more important: America or his ego?

The Glittering Eye: The speech was pretty good. Mr. Trump certainly can play offense. Whether he can play defense or needs to remains to be seen. He clearly understands Sec. Clinton’s defects and what his supporters think of her. I don’t think he’ll convince anyone because everyone’s already made up their minds. The only real question is who will turn out and vote?

As to whether he can win, I genuinely have no idea. As I’ve repeatedly said over at my place, I find this election cycle completely baffling. I think that everyone has lost their minds. We have a corrupt, incompetent criminal running against a hipshooting blowhard.

I also think that lying to pollsters has become incredibly commonplace.

Bookworm Room : The speech showed four things that I think are all to the good:

1. Trump did what his supporters wanted, which was to go directly to Hillary’s jugular.

2. He’s working his way towards slightly more conventional statesmanship in his speeches. If he could just learn not to use every speech as a business promo, he’d be more effective.

3. He was smart to fire Lewandowski, who was the right man for the primaries, but too much of a mafia enforcer type for the general campaign.

4. If it was indeed his children and their spouses who urged him to fire Lewandowski and become more disciplined, he should continue to listen to them.

If Trump can master discipline and statesmanship, while keeping close to his primary promises (blogging illegal immigration, greater protections against the Islamist threat, supporting Israel, knocking the pins out from under the media, getting things done, etc), I think he will — as Scott Adams promises — run a successful campaign. To the extent Hillary’s polling higher now, I see three things at work: the post-primary bounce now that Bernie is gone; slanted polls from the Dems, the media (but I repeat myself), and the GOP, all of which weight Democrats too heavily; and the Shy Tory effect, which is to say that many people are embarrassed to admit, even to a pollster, that they like Trump. I suspect that the Shy Tory effect was at work in England again, explaining the ruling class’s absolute shock that the Brexit vote went to “Leave.”

JoshuaPundit:The speech itself was so on target that it shocked a lot of people…a sign of how used we’ve become to our political figures  lying to us and avoiding the obvious. The Clintonista media tried to downplay it of course, but failed miserably. CNN in particular wound up with egg all over its porcine face when they ‘fact checked’ Trump’s claim about Mrs. Clinton okaying the sale of  a large chunk of America’s uranium uranium holdings to Russia, in exchange for the funneling of $145 million from nine investors to the Clinton Foundation as ‘false’. They later had to eat their words publicly.

The campaign itself has taken an interesting turn.  Here we have a Republican nominee who won overwhelmingly with record numbers and did it in part by doing exactly what the GOP always claimed it wanted, getting more black, Hispanic and crossover Democrat support. But of course, all that became insignificant when it involved  an outsider insurgent candidate who couldn’t be bought and controlled. So Trump’s biggest problem isn’t defeating Hillary Clinton – given how the publicly released polls are being cooked, I’d say  the real numbers are a lot different than the six point average spread Real Clear Politics is showing.  His real problem is the ‘friendly’ fire at his rear from the GOP establishment. And the narrative they’re pushing is strikingly familiar to me. 

Trump is being criticized for not being able to raise money or put together a campaign staff. Isn’t it logical that a candidate who wants to end the flow of cheap labor coming across the border, clamp down on outsourcing and and renegotiate ruinous trade deals and globalization might have trouble getting support from the donor class who profit from these things and  from the politicians and pundits they own? The only big ones willing to publicly put country before their own greed and self interest so far are Sheldon Adleson, Rupert Murdoch  and some of Trump’s friends like Carl Icahn.

The same thing applies to building a campaign staff. In the face of  threats  from the GOP establishment that their careers are over if they sign on to Trump’s campaign, a lot of  political operatives and potential staffers  have decided that employment opportunities  with down ticket campaigns  and even anti-Trump organizations funded by the donor class like Free The Delegates that are a lot safer for them.

Trump’s also being urged to make concessions ‘to unify the party.’ But what if they don’t want to be unified? What if they’d rather see business as usual with a President Clinton? All of the candidates signed a pledge early in the campaign that they would all support whoever the eventual nominee was. Out of the major candidates, the only one to keep his word was Marco Rubio, and the Republican National Committee (RNC) has done nothing about it. 

A quarter of a billion dollars was spent to stop Donald Trump from getting the nomination, much of it in the form a relentless negative attack ads. Yet in his victory speech in New York, Trump went out of his way to extend an olive branch to his opponents, especially Ted Cruz. Imagine how different the current climate might be if Ted Cruz had accepted that, swallowed his bitterness and kept his word.

When I say that what’s going on here is strikingly familiar to me, it’s because it reminds me of what’s been happening in the Middle East. Israel was and is the victim of aggression, terrorism and constant incitement, yet it is Israel whom is repeatedly being asked to make concessions, release convicted murderers and to give up land no matter how many genuine offers of peace get slapped away by the Arabs. And when that happens, it’s usually Israel who gets blamed for not being ‘flexible’ enough. If they were as ‘flexible’ as President Obama wanted, they would soon no longer have a country.

Trump’s getting a similar treatment. Any Republican nominee could count on being labeled as a racist, a homophobe and a hater of women by the Democrat minions in the media no matter what he did or didn’t say, but here, they’re getting ample assistance from the GOP establishment.  Because Trump’s real crime is exactly what got him the nomination…his willingness to  look at Islamist terrorism, globalization and illegal migration as problems that need desperately to be solved, along with plain speaking about Obama’s agenda and the damage it has done to America.  For him to change that stance significantly would destroy him as a viable candidate for those whom support him.

If Trump gets the nomination – and I put the odds at 60-40 in his favor, just because he won by such a huge majority – I predict that his acceptance speech will remind Republicans of the consequences  if they fail to unite and allow the Clintons back in the White House again. Here’s hoping they listen, but based on their usual behavior, The Donald will likely have to fight that battle without them.

We’ll see…

Laura Rambeau Lee, Right Reason :If Donald Trump continues to speak as well as he did last week he could well become our next president. He did well and appeared more presidential than he has in the past. Trump needs to continue to stay on point; focusing on jobs, the economy, making sure we do not allow refugees into our country without a comprehensive vetting process, and preventing illegal aliens from coming here and draining our limited welfare programs and threatening the safety of Americans.

He should keep talking about Clinton’s corruption and untrustworthiness going as far back as her and her husband’s career in “public service.” He needs to attack her on her ties with Wall Street, her exorbitant speaking fees, her setting up a private server for her emails during her term as Secretary of State which jeopardized our national security, and her dealings and receipt of monies personally and through The Clinton Foundation from countries with horrific records of human rights violations and barbaric Islamic shari’ah in exchange for obvious favors granted through her position in government.

Hopefully he will stay focused and keep from making any comments the media will perceive and publicize as racist, bigoted, misogynistic and vulgar, especially going into the Republican National Convention next month. Trump must present himself as the president he promises he will be if elected; restoring the power to the people and tearing down the “rigged system” our government has become.

  Well, there you have it.

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it.

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Scottish Tories Ponder SECESSION from UK Party – While Opposing Independence for Scotland!

From the Nice Bit Of Irony Department:  Ruth Davidson, the leader of the Conservative Party in the Scottish Parliament (called Holyrood from the central capital area they meet in) is quoted in the UK Telegraph (sometimes called the “Torygraph“) as saying that if MP Boris Johnson becomes PM, the Scottish Tories will break away and form their own party.

Ruth Davidson believes the Scottish Conservatives would have to break away from the UK party under a new name if Boris Johnson becomes Prime Minister, the Telegraph can disclose as the pair prepare to face off  on Tuesday night in an EU referendum TV debate.

That’s right!  Their own party!  Here’s a confirmation from The National:

RUTH Davidson is coming under pressure from senior members of her Holyrood team to break away from the UK Conservatives if leading Brexiteer Boris Johnson becomes Prime Minister.

But yet, Davidson and the Scottish Conservatives want to deny that kind of independence to the people of Scotland – you should not even get a vote!  See here:

A second independence referendum is “not in the best interests of Scotland”, according to the leader of the Scottish Conservatives.

There is precedent for Davidson’s move but she might not like it:  The Communist Party of Lithuania.

In the waning days of the Gorbachev regime (although that was not clear at the time), the Lithuanians (along with the other Baltic republics illegally occupied during the Second World War) sought independence (by the way the Baltics have done great since independence although they should consider their own Brexit from the EU empire) and the move in Lithuania was so popular that even the Communists broke away from the CP USSR!  Here’s the NYTimes article to prove it:

The Communist Party of Lithuania voted overwhelmingly today to break away from the leadership in Moscow, becoming the first local party organization in the history of the Soviet Union to defy the Kremlin by declaring independence.

The party immediately declared that a primary goal was the creation of ”an independent democratic Lithuanian state.”

OOPS!  (By the way the communists are illegal in Lithuania since 1991!)

Now independence for the Scottish Tories might be a good move.  We need a right of center party dedicated to liberty.  But their opposition to independence might make them so toxic when Scotland (note the “when”) becomes its own nation.  We need a party of liberty in Scotland.  A native pro-indy party with the UKIP Scotland platform.  That will only happen when Scotland is independent.

BUT the Scottish Tories would be hypocritical to say:  We want to break away and form our own party and then say – Scotland cannot do the same!

This is actually a good move for independence for Scotland.  Scotland IS a nation and it ought to be recognized as such.

NOTE:  There IS a Libertarian Party of Scotland and they do favor independence.  Here is their FB page and website.  Ron Paul is on the front!  (Good move!  Made me feel welcome!)


Article written by: Elwood "Sandy" Sanders

BREXIT UPDATE: Will SNP Call for Independence Vote? MEMO to SNP to WIN This Time: Read THIS Blog!!

There is a wonderful spirit this weekend at the Sanders home.  My kids hate it; but victory laps continue for a second night in Mechanicsville!

Now let’s talk about aspects of this:  I believe in Brexit.  I also believe in Scotland Independence.  And the first happened!  The second might!

Now I know they’ll probably try to join again the EU and I know the Scottish regime is not friendly to liberty.  But Scotland IS a nation and was independent in the past and should be indy in the future!

So, I went to The National – the leading daily in Scotland for independence – and what did I find:

  1.  This wonderful article by Craig McAngus on how Scotland CAN do a referendum WITHOUT the permission of the UK!  (Guess who said that?  Yes right here at the blog!)  Here is McAngus’ analysis:

The Scottish Government could also hold a referendum even if the UK Government does not agree to it because she can go to Brussels and say: “We want to stay, we want to remain part of the European Union, our people democratically voted twice to remain and be an independent state within the EU so that is a double mandate, can you help us out in that respect?”

Then, it is almost like a unilateral declaration of independence; it is appealing to the EU to be allowed to stay in while the rest of the UK negotiates its exit. I think those are the two realistic options open to the SNP and I do think the Scottish Government would go down the latter route if it felt it necessary.

Right-o, McAngus!  BTW, I mentioned the UDI idea at this post.  The United Nations recognizes the self-determination of peoples.  So did our President Woodrow Wilson.

2.  Speaking of UDI – did First Minister Sturgeon hint at it in her instruction to the government to begin the process of a new independence referendum?

‘The Scottish Parliament should have the right to hold another referendum if there is a significant and material change in the circumstances that prevailed over 2014 such as Scotland being taken out of the EU against our will’

***

“If Parliament judges that a second referendum is the best or only way to protect our place in Europe, it must have the option to hold one within that timescale.

“That means we must act now to protect that position.

“I can therefore confirm today that in order to protect that position we will begin to prepare the legislation that would be required to enable a new independence referendum to take place if and when Parliament so decides.”

Sounds like an unilateral referendum might be possible after all.

Finally, there’s more in The National:

3.  An independent Scotland can use sterling if it chooses WITHOUT Permission!  I said this at least four times here at the blog!  Let’s go here quoting Nicola Sturgeon on the pound:

One audience member asked [Sturgeon] if an independent Scotland would look to join the Euro as well as the EU after a Brexit, Sturgeon replied: “The pound is Scotland’s currency as much as it is England’s currency. That’s the currency I think all parts of the UK should use and it’s the one I’d want Scotland to use.

“Scotland uses the pound. It’s our currency just as it is your currency, and that’s the currency I think we should continue to use.”

These banknotes from the Clydesdale Bank are particularly attractive for use by an independent Scotland.  Here are all three banks currency design.

Memo to First Minister Sturgeon:  I’m right there with you – and the SNP – on independence.  After that, you’re on your own.  But independence will bring about a split of the SNP into two or more – up to several parties.  And there can be a renaissance of liberty in Scotland.  PS:  This Scotland thing is not academic for me:  My grandmother’s maiden name was Thompson and they can wear these tartans.

So, feel free to use my stuff as you see fit.  Never been to Scotland…

 


Article written by: Elwood "Sandy" Sanders

The Council Has Spoken! Our Watcher’s Council Results

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/62/C.sf.,_castelli,_carmine_gentile,_ovale_con_allegoria_dell%27accademia_degli_illuminati,_1730-1750.JPG

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.

“Americans have the right to choose to be unarmed and helpless. Be my guest.” – Ted Nugent

“The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles.” – Jeff Cooper, Art of The Rifle

“There are no dangerous weapons. There are only dangerous men.”– Robert A. Heinlein

Stately McDaniel Manor

This week’s winning essay,Stately McDaniel Manor’s A Post-Orlando AR-15 Primer is one of those rare gems of the blogosphere – a very well written, compact, information packed source of practical knowledge by someone who knows what he’s talking about. Here’s a slice:

The recent Jihadist slaughter of Americans in Orlando is a crisis Mr. Obama and his sycophantic minions are determined not to allow to go to waste. Accordingly, he has come up with a typically Obamite plan to deal with Islamist terror: disarm law-abiding Americans who pose no threat to anyone. Fox News reports:

Obama-Pledge-salute

Being tough on terrorism — particularly the sorts of homegrown terrorism that we’ve seen now in Orlando and San Bernardino — means making it harder for people who want to kill Americans to get their hands on assault weapons that are capable of killing dozens of innocents as quickly as possible,’ Obama said in his weekly radio address. ‘That’s something I’ll continue to talk about in the weeks ahead.

Hillary Clinton, who has never seen an anti-liberty, gun control idea she did not embrace, was true to form:
Hillary

Presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has also joined the fight to ban semi-automatic weapons, saying last week: ‘Weapons of war have no place on our streets.

Some Democrats, Liberal Republicans, and some in the media are calling for compromise, but compromise requires that each side surrender something. Such compromise is commonly presented as integral to “common sense gun safety” proposals, but what will anti-liberty forces surrender? They have nothing to offer, but they demand total surrender. How may fundamental, unalienable rights be compromised? How does one compromise on due process? How does one compromise on the right to keep and bear arms? Allow the abridgement of rights every other week only?

Professional anti-gun shock troops in the media and Congress have implied that the AR-15 and all of its variants are uniquely dangerous and commonly used in mass shootings and crime. This is abject nonsense. Rifles of all types are used in less than 3% of all shootings, and AR-15s in only a tiny portion of that already tiny portion of the firearm universe.

The AR-15 has been demonized, and will continue to be disparaged because the anti-gun movement has, for decades, worked to convince the public that any gun that looks like a machine gun must be a fully automatic weapon. One of the oldest tactics of these anti-freedom forces is to ban any gun, type of gun or accessory possible in the hope that such bans will be a foot in the door to eventual total bans of firearms in the hands of law-abiding citizens.

M-16

Early M-16

With this in mind, I present a basic AR-15 primer in the hope that facts are the best antidote to lies. Anti-gunners often call the AR-15 a “high-powered” rifle, or an “assault weapon.” Both are entirely false. The AR-15 fires a rifle cartridge of intermediate power at best, and there is no such thing as an “assault weapon,” which is entirely an invention of anti-gun organizations and the media, though some states have used that language in gun banning legislation.

L to R: .22LR, 9mm, .223, .308

L to R: .22LR, 9mm, .223, .308

For an understanding of the relative size of the cartridges mentioned herein, here is a photo of four of the most common contemporary cartridges. From left to right, the .22 Long Rifle, the 9mm, the .223, and the .308. True high-powered rifle cartridges are on the order of the .308 and larger.

M1 Garand Battle Rifle

M1 Garand Battle Rifle

Battle Rifles: After WWII, the Army sought a replacement for the M1 Garand, a large and heavy rifle, firing an unquestionably high-powered cartridge, the .30 caliber 30.06. This–a high-powered, full-sized cartridge–is the defining characteristic of the battle rifle. Because of the power of these long-range cartridges, battle rifles tend to be heavy, weighing in the ten-pound range, and have been historically made of steel and wood, which has been replaced with plastics in the modern era. The M1 was the first generally issued semiautomatic battle rifle.

General George Patton called the Garand “the greatest battle implement ever devised,” but it did have drawbacks. Loaded, the weapon commonly weighed more than 11 pounds, and it did not use magazines, but metal clips holding only 8 rounds. The 30.06 is also a physically large and heavy cartridge, limiting the number of rounds a soldier can carry. The Garand remains the only widely available firearm that is actually fed via a clip, which term is commonly misused when one actually means “magazine.”

FN FAL Battle Rifle

FN FAL Battle Rifle

After WWII, modernization efforts among western militaries nearly led to the American adoption of the excellent FN-FAL semiautomatic rifle in .308 caliber. Unfortunately, the “not invented here” syndrome prevailed and the US adopted the M-14, which was essentially an M1-Garand in the somewhat smaller .308 cartridge, with a flash hider and a removable 20-round box magazine. This more or less forced NATO to adopt the .308. At around the same time, the British were experimenting, to good effect, with sub-.30 caliber cartridges.

M-14 Battle Rifle

M-14 Battle Rifle

The M-14 was the rifle that initially accompanied our troops in Vietnam. Its unsuitability as a general issue rifle for counter insurgency warfare, particularly fought in a jungle environment, quickly became obvious. The need for a lighter weapon capable of fully automatic fire–battle rifles are too light to be controllable in full-auto mode–and firing a smaller cartridge became obvious. One can carry far more .223 cartridges for the same weight and space than .308 cartridges.

StG44, the first assault rifle credit:www.geocities.ws

StG44, the first assault rifle
credit:www.geocities.ws

Assault Rifles: The first true assault rifle was the German StG-44, first used in combat near the end of WWII. It was this rifle that was part of the inspiration for the ubiquitous AK-47, the most widely produced assault rifle in history. True assault rifles have these characteristics:
(1) Shoulder fired
(2) Gas operated (with a few well-known exceptions)
(3) Single-operator fired
(4) Removable magazine fed
(5) Firing an intermediate-sized cartridge
(6) Semiautomatic and full automatic (and/or burst) capability

Eugene Stoner, working for the ArmaLite Company (hence “AR”), developed the forerunner of the AR-15, the AR-10, in the mid 1950s. Like the AR-15 that followed it, it was made with aircraft grade aluminum and plastics, and had a very futuristic appearance. Unlike the AR-15 it was chambered for the .308 (finalized as the 7.62 NATO) cartridge. It competed against the M-14 and the FN-FAL in Army trials, but the Army adopted the M-14, and the AR-10 was scaled down to become the AR-15, which would ironically require the kind of intermediate cartridge the British wanted. A more detailed history of the development of the AR-15 can be found here.

It was the Air Force, not the Army, that initially adopted the AR-15, designated the M-16, for base security, in the iconic triangular hand guard configuration. The initial flash hider had a multi-pronged, open end, which was quickly found to catch on foliage, and was replaced with a closed end design as depicted here. Eventual redesigns of the rifle resulted in the round hand guard and the heavier barrel now standard on the military family of weapons. The .223 civilian cartridge was standardized as the 5.56mm NATO cartridge. While the cartridges have very similar dimensions, there are some caveats regarding their use. It is entirely safe to fire .223 cartridges in weapons chambered for 5.56mm, but the opposite may be unsafe in some circumstances. Those interested can find more detailed information here.

The Civilian AR-15: The AR-15 is the best-selling rifle family in America. However, it is not an assault rifle, and certainly not a non-existent “assault weapon,” which is best defined as any firearm anti-gun forces want to ban on any given day, particularly if it is black, or scary-looking to the uninformed. The standard military rifle has a barrel of approximately 20”, but the most popular civilian configuration resembles the military M-4, which is a short-barreled, fully automatic carbine with a collapsing stock. Civilian equivalents are not fully automatic firearms, and have barrels of no less than 16” to conform to federal law.

Much more at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Scott Adams@Dilbert.com with How to Un-Hypnotize a Rabid Anti-Trumper submitted by The Glittering Eye.

Let’s just say that if you are an anti-Trumper or know someone who is, you owe it to yourself to read this one, redolent with the creator of Dilbert’s cynical wit and knack for getting to the truth of the matter.

It might be noted that Scott Adams has endorsed Hillary Clinton, because ‘I live in California and I fear for my physical safety.’

Here are this week’s full results. Only Fausta was unable to vote but was not subject to the usual 2/3 vote penalty for not voting :

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. and every Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

View original article:  

The Council Has Spoken! Our Watcher’s Council Results


Article written by: Tom White

The Council Has Spoken! Our Watcher’s Council Results

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The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.

“Americans have the right to choose to be unarmed and helpless. Be my guest.” – Ted Nugent

“The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles.” – Jeff Cooper, Art of The Rifle

“There are no dangerous weapons. There are only dangerous men.”– Robert A. Heinlein

Stately McDaniel Manor

This week’s winning essay,Stately McDaniel Manor’s A Post-Orlando AR-15 Primer is one of those rare gems of the blogosphere – a very well written, compact, information packed source of practical knowledge by someone who knows what he’s talking about. Here’s a slice:

The recent Jihadist slaughter of Americans in Orlando is a crisis Mr. Obama and his sycophantic minions are determined not to allow to go to waste. Accordingly, he has come up with a typically Obamite plan to deal with Islamist terror: disarm law-abiding Americans who pose no threat to anyone. Fox News reports: 

Obama-Pledge-salute

Being tough on terrorism — particularly the sorts of homegrown terrorism that we’ve seen now in Orlando and San Bernardino — means making it harder for people who want to kill Americans to get their hands on assault weapons that are capable of killing dozens of innocents as quickly as possible,’ Obama said in his weekly radio address. ‘That’s something I’ll continue to talk about in the weeks ahead.

Hillary Clinton, who has never seen an anti-liberty, gun control idea she did not embrace, was true to form:
Hillary

Presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has also joined the fight to ban semi-automatic weapons, saying last week: ‘Weapons of war have no place on our streets.

Some Democrats, Liberal Republicans, and some in the media are calling for compromise, but compromise requires that each side surrender something. Such compromise is commonly presented as integral to “common sense gun safety” proposals, but what will anti-liberty forces surrender? They have nothing to offer, but they demand total surrender. How may fundamental, unalienable rights be compromised? How does one compromise on due process? How does one compromise on the right to keep and bear arms? Allow the abridgement of rights every other week only?

Professional anti-gun shock troops in the media and Congress have implied that the AR-15 and all of its variants are uniquely dangerous and commonly used in mass shootings and crime.  This is abject nonsense.  Rifles of all types are used in less than 3% of all shootings, and AR-15s in only a tiny portion of that already tiny portion of the firearm universe.

The AR-15 has been demonized, and will continue to be disparaged because the anti-gun movement has, for decades, worked to convince the public that any gun that looks like a machine gun must be a fully automatic weapon.  One of the oldest tactics of these anti-freedom forces is to ban any gun, type of gun or accessory possible in the hope that such bans will be a foot in the door to eventual total bans of firearms in the hands of law-abiding citizens.

M-16

Early M-16

With this in mind, I present a basic AR-15 primer in the hope that facts are the best antidote to lies.  Anti-gunners often call the AR-15 a “high-powered” rifle, or an “assault weapon.”  Both are entirely false.  The AR-15 fires a rifle cartridge of intermediate power at best, and there is no such thing as an “assault weapon,” which is entirely an invention of anti-gun organizations and the media, though some states have used that language in gun banning legislation.

L to R: .22LR, 9mm, .223, .308

L to R: .22LR, 9mm, .223, .308

For an understanding of the relative size of the cartridges mentioned herein, here is a photo of four of the most common contemporary cartridges.  From left to right, the .22 Long Rifle, the 9mm, the .223, and the .308. True high-powered rifle cartridges are on the order of the .308 and larger.

M1 Garand Battle Rifle

M1 Garand Battle Rifle

Battle Rifles:  After WWII, the Army sought a replacement for the M1 Garand, a large and heavy rifle, firing an unquestionably high-powered cartridge, the .30 caliber 30.06.  This–a high-powered, full-sized cartridge–is the defining characteristic of the battle rifle.  Because of the power of these long-range cartridges, battle rifles tend to be heavy, weighing in the ten-pound range, and have been historically made of steel and wood, which has been replaced with plastics in the modern era.  The M1 was the first generally issued semiautomatic battle rifle.

General George Patton called the Garand “the greatest battle implement ever devised,” but it did have drawbacks.  Loaded, the weapon commonly weighed more than 11 pounds, and it did not use magazines, but metal clips holding only 8 rounds.  The 30.06 is also a physically large and heavy cartridge, limiting the number of rounds a soldier can carry.  The Garand remains the only widely available firearm that is actually fed via a clip, which term is commonly misused when one actually means “magazine.”

FN FAL Battle Rifle

FN FAL Battle Rifle

After WWII, modernization efforts among western militaries nearly led to the American adoption of the excellent FN-FAL semiautomatic rifle in .308 caliber.  Unfortunately, the “not invented here” syndrome prevailed and the US adopted the M-14, which was essentially an M1-Garand in the somewhat smaller .308 cartridge, with a flash hider and a removable 20-round box magazine.  This more or less forced NATO to adopt the .308. At around the same time, the British were experimenting, to good effect, with sub-.30 caliber cartridges.

M-14 Battle Rifle

M-14 Battle Rifle

The M-14 was the rifle that initially accompanied our troops in Vietnam.  Its unsuitability as a general issue rifle for counter insurgency warfare, particularly fought in a jungle environment, quickly became obvious.  The need for a lighter weapon capable of fully automatic fire–battle rifles are too light to be controllable in full-auto mode–and firing a smaller cartridge became obvious. One can carry far more .223 cartridges for the same weight and space than .308 cartridges.

StG44, the first assault rifle credit:www.geocities.ws

StG44, the first assault rifle
credit:www.geocities.ws

Assault Rifles:  The first true assault rifle was the German StG-44, first used in combat near the end of WWII.  It was this rifle that was part of the inspiration for the ubiquitous AK-47, the most widely produced assault rifle in history.  True assault rifles have these characteristics:
(1) Shoulder fired
(2) Gas operated (with a few well-known exceptions)
(3) Single-operator fired
(4) Removable magazine fed
(5) Firing an intermediate-sized cartridge
(6) Semiautomatic and full automatic (and/or burst) capability

Eugene Stoner, working for the ArmaLite Company (hence “AR”), developed the forerunner of the AR-15, the AR-10, in the mid 1950s.  Like the AR-15 that followed it, it was made with aircraft grade aluminum and plastics, and had a very futuristic appearance.  Unlike the AR-15 it was chambered for the .308 (finalized as the 7.62 NATO) cartridge.  It competed against the M-14 and the FN-FAL in Army trials, but the Army adopted the M-14, and the AR-10 was scaled down to become the AR-15, which would ironically require the kind of intermediate cartridge the British wanted.  A more detailed history of the development of the AR-15 can be found here.  

It was the Air Force, not the Army, that initially adopted the AR-15, designated the M-16, for base security, in the iconic triangular hand guard configuration.  The initial flash hider had a multi-pronged, open end, which was quickly found to catch on foliage, and was replaced with a closed end design as depicted here.  Eventual redesigns of the rifle resulted in the round hand guard and the heavier barrel now standard on the military family of weapons.  The .223 civilian cartridge was standardized as the 5.56mm NATO cartridge.  While the cartridges have very similar dimensions, there are some caveats regarding their use. It is entirely safe to fire .223 cartridges in weapons chambered for 5.56mm, but the opposite may be unsafe in some circumstances. Those interested can find more detailed information here.  

The Civilian AR-15:  The AR-15 is the best-selling rifle family in America.  However, it is not an assault rifle, and certainly not a non-existent “assault weapon,” which is best defined as any firearm anti-gun forces want to ban on any given day, particularly if it is black, or scary-looking to the uninformed.  The standard military rifle has a barrel of approximately 20”, but the most popular civilian configuration resembles the military M-4, which is a short-barreled, fully automatic carbine with a collapsing stock.  Civilian equivalents are not fully automatic firearms, and have barrels of no less than 16” to conform to federal law.

Much more at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Scott Adams@Dilbert.com with How to Un-Hypnotize a Rabid Anti-Trumper submitted by The Glittering Eye.

Let’s just say that if you are an anti-Trumper or know someone who is, you owe it to yourself to read this one, redolent with the creator of Dilbert’s cynical wit and knack for getting to the truth of the matter.

It might be noted that Scott Adams has endorsed Hillary Clinton, because ‘I live in California and I fear for my physical safety.’

Here are this week’s full results. Only Fausta was unable to vote but was not subject to the usual 2/3 vote penalty for not voting :

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. and every  Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

EARTHQUAKE WARNING: BREXIT SLATED to WIN! LIBERTY WINS! Thank Jesus!

The BBC, ITV and Sky News (three of the leading TV channels in the UK) have each called the Brexit election – should Britain leave the EU – in favor of the UK in fact LEAVING the EU!

A huge upset win for Brexit!

I am thrilled of course.  I congratulate the Leave campaign, Nigel Farage and UKIP and all the British people who braved bullying, scaremongering and name calling to vote for freedom, liberty and sovereignty.

So the minor earthquake in Mechanicsville tonight and early in the AM – I write this at 1153 EDT – is me doing victory donuts at our home.

YAY!

UPDATE:  At some risk I got to say – thank Jesus for this wonderful win!  Your blogger was praying hard for Brexit – we need it – and I was discouraged most of the day – looked bad.  Now why do I say that?  Because if you pray and you get an answer you like – you gotta thank Him for it!  I certainly do not think my prayers were dispositive.


Article written by: Elwood "Sandy" Sanders