ATF Director: “Any 5.56 round is a challenge for officer safety…”

Committee on Oversight and Government Reform website

“ATF Director B. Todd Jones said all types of the 5.56 military-style ammo used by shooters pose a threat to police as more people buy the AR-15-style pistols.” via ATF raises new concerns about AR-15 ammo | WashingtonExaminer.com.

As has been said over and over again, the proposed framework (even if they don’t implement it) was designed to give the ATF the ability to ban ALL rifle ammunition under the pretense that it is a threat to law enforcement. That’s is B. Todd Jones’ goal and directive from the man who appointed him. Though the President and Jones claim to respect the Second Amendment, every proposal they’ve made has been an attempt to circumvent it.

What is amazing is that even the news organization that bears Michael Bloomberg’s name pointed to the ATF’s pursuit of a ban as being a waste of time.

“The AR-15-type handguns in question are relatively expensive, heavy, and about two feet in length. You haven’t read much about them because they’re not turning up at crime scenes. Green tips, moreover, haven’t contributed discernibly to shooting waves, let alone skeins of cop killings. (I’m unaware of a single police shooting that involved the ammo in question; if you know of one, please point it out.) If bad guys want to use rifle ammunition to kill police officers, they can do so right now – and they have a vast array of rounds to choose from. ” via What You Need to Know About the Armor-Piercing Bullet Controversy | Bloomberg.com

The ban has been shelved for now but, it’s not time to celebrate. The ATF is still moving foward with 41P which for many of us, will make it all but impossible to purchase NFA items by requiring CLEO signatures on transfers even to trusts and corporations. If you live in a place like Harris County, Texas, the obvious CLEO signature would be that of Sheriff Adrian Garcia or someone acting under his authority. Rest assured, that signature will never happen and there are scant few alternatives to anyone who isn’t politically connected at the federal level in Harris County.

41P aside, it is clear the new ATF director will continue to make every effort to gut the Second Amendment. The President that appointed him promised to do so when Congress wouldn’t. Even if the M855 ban is shelved for now, we’ll likely see it again or something far worse before the current administration leaves office in 2017.

-GM

S&W may not be in quite such bad shape as first thought

There are signs that Smith & Wesson’s profits will remain under pressure. With demand soft, the company’s inventory has continued to rise. At the end of October, it held $99 million in inventory, up from $76 million at the same time a year earlier.

The company also said it plans to offer “aggressive promotions” in coming months to protect market share. It acknowledged that gross margins could take a hit as a result.

Unfortunately, margins are already looking depressed. Gross margin for the quarter was 32.1 percent, the lowest level since the quarter ended in January 2012.

via Gun lovers leaving Smith & Wesson for dead?.

I’ve mentioned before that my day job consists of managing IT for an investment manager. And it was just a week or two back that I overheard the conference call in which S&W discussed their current financial status. News of S&W’s financial “difficulties” set the ears of the financial world’s liberals ablaze. This of course includes the network that carries Michael Bloomberg’s name as well as a branch of MSNBC known as CNBC. And we mentioned it this in last Sunday’s podcast. Robert Farago also covered it on The Truth About Guns. But, since then I’ve had a chance to sit down and talk with one of my co-workers. A guy much smarter than me who recently took over managing our equity portfolios. We’ll call him Cranky Curmudgeon.

Cranky tells me that as he looks at S&W’s public filings, the picture isn’t quite so bleak. While the firm has taken on $100 million plus in debt as part of their recent acquisition of Battenfeld Technologies (think Caldwell Shooting Suppplies, Frankford Arsenal, or Golden Rod Moisture Control), Cranky says there’s currently no significant financial strain on the company.

Sales are down and inventories are up but, with respect to debt, or servicing that debt, current revenues more than cover it. More specifically, the company has done something that is not at all unusual for corporations in that they’ve effectively kicked the rock of paying off debts due in 2015, down the road to 2017. Corporate types might call it cash flow and debt management. It’s one of those things us normal folk can’t do. It’s all a bit more complicated than anything I’m prepared to explain but, the bottom line is, S&W, at least in Cranky’s eyes, isn’t going anywhere and they are in a far better situation than many energy companies right now. In fact, it may soon be a time to buy S&W since the stock price has fallen to around $9/share from a high of $17 or so back in June. One rule never seems to change in the investment industry…Buy low, sell high.

-GM

P.S. I am just an IT guy and a shooter. Please don’t confuse my musings and commentary above as investment advice. That’s not my job. Talk to your CFA certified investment professional about investing. Talk to me about guns. I like S&W. I’ll continue buying their guns. I’ll let “Cranky” manage my money.

Moms Demand Action buys spot in the Houston Comical, I mean Chronicle, to assault Kroger.

Screenshot from 2014-09-04 13:05:07It’s been making the rounds that Moms Demand Action has been trying to shame Kroger into adopting policies that MDA/Watts/Bloomberg find appealing. Specifcally, banning guns from Kroger stores. Kroger, to their credit, has thus far said, in a nutshell, “Our business, our decision, we don’t need your advice, we’re here to sell groceries…Please move along.” Well in the last few days, it seems Bloomberg, Watts and the gang have kicked their campaign into high gear, buying ad space with publications in areas served by Kroger.  I could be wrong but, I suspect Kroger will leave things as they are so long as no one “shows their appreciation” by staging a scene to “educate the rest of us” on our rights.

-GM

Update: Everytown for Gun Safety video works as predicted for two women of “The View”

In our previous post, we mentioned that Everytown for Gun Safety’s new video was likely to have the exact opposite effect of what they intended. Well, Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy just proved the point. Neither apparently see the video as a clear call for gun control. In fact, they both indicate it reminds them of why women SHOULD own guns! Great job Mike and Shannon!
-GM

Bloomberg Plans a $50 Million Challenge to the N.R.A. – NYTimes.com

“Michael R. Bloomberg, making his first major political investment since leaving office, plans to spend $50 million this year building a nationwide grass-roots network to motivate voters who feel strongly about curbing gun violence…”

via Bloomberg Plans a $50 Million Challenge to the N.R.A. – NYTimes.com.

 

Ugh.  What people need to understand first is that “gun violence” is a made up term. Violence is either lawful or unlawful, regardless of the tool used to commit said violence. Far more people are killed and injured annually as a result of what is actually criminal use of a motor vehicle through driving under the influence, speeding, and (increasingly) distracted driving.  And yet, no one calls it “vehicular violence” even when there are actual criminal charges such as “vehicular assault.” And we certainly aren’t in a rush to ban private ownership of vehicles. Again, this is a completely made up term to suit a political agenda.

Bloomberg and others of his ilk will say they respect the 2nd Amendment. They don’t. At least not as it’s written. They choose to interpret it as a collective right for the rest of us while reserving it as an individual right to themselves by way of a phalanx of armed security personnel. And yet if you point out this hypocrisy, the answer is usually one of two things. They are considered “high profile” or “high risk,” neither of which would apply if they’d just shut up and stopped sticking their noses into other people’s lives.

-GM