Run Mike, Run.

So this morning I started off 2020 by taking a look at Mike’s website and volunteering to help his campaign. I’ll get into the reasons why I am supporting him below (actually it’s one reason) but before that, I took a look at what he has to say about guns. After all, if Trump’s the first President to fashion an entire political image around his so-called support of 2nd-Amendment ‘rights,’ so Mike’s the first Presidential candidate who has made a national name for himself by trying to do something about the violence caused by guns.

And in case you slept through the 2018 Congressional campaign, there may be a whole bunch of first-time members of Congress who owe their seats to the money they received from Mike, along with millions of dollars he put up to support gun-control initiatives in various states. And let’s not forget that he also has been instrumental in helping our friend Shannon build the first, truly grass-roots organization which fights the good fight against guns. But back to his 2020 campaign.

Mike has a whole section on the website devoted to his plan for controlling guns. To his credit, there isn’t a single word on his website about supporting the 2nd Amendment. He isn’t pandering to Gun-nut Nation by talking about ‘sensible’ gun laws, a la Liz Warren, or ‘respecting’ the 2nd Amendment, which is what Joe says on his site. I really wish the Democrats would stop pretending that anyone believes them when they say how much the 2nd Amendment can somehow co-exist alongside ‘reasonable’ gun laws. Give me a friggin’ break, okay?

Mike’s plan to deal with gun violence is basically to apply the same gun laws throughout the United States that have existed in New York City since 1912; i.e., the strict licensing of all guns which requires a permit prior to every purchase along with registration of all guns.

There’s only one little problem with this approach, however. And the problem happens to be the fact that while New York City now has a remarkably low level of gun violence, a trend that started under Rudy’s administration, accelerated under Mike but now have jumped up again under Bill, the city’s gun laws haven’t changed one bit no matter who is in charge, except that Mike did increase the licensing fees.

Why did gun violence decline so much in New York after it rose to epidemic proportions in 1993? Nobody really knows, except that the downward trend in the Big Apple occurred in virtually every large city throughout the United States. And endless books, articles and hot-air to the contrary, we don’t really know why that happened either, for that matter. All we know is that it did.

So I’m not going to bat for Mike because of his stance on guns. I’m going to support him because I believe, with all due respect to my friend Joe, that Mike has the best chance to beat Trump. And I further believe that in order to beat sh*t-head Trump or sleazy Don or whatever you want to call him, Mike just has to do one thing:

When the time is right Mike, just release your tax returns and that will be the end of that.

Have a great 2020 everyone!

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19 thoughts on “Run Mike, Run.

  1. I hope Mike doesn’t push for too much such that he topples himself. Though I do love his position on guns – it’s like the German approach.

  2. I thoroughly read Mike Bloomberg’s plan to reduce gun violence (by clicking on the above link in this post). Among other measures, he mentions placing the gun industry under some form of consumer protection regulation.

    Question: Do any of our peer nation’s do that? I suspect not but am not certain.

  3. Gotta offend everyone here. If guns were the single overriding issue to me, I’d vote for Trump and register as a Republican. If Bloomberg thinks I want to go through hundreds of dollars in permitting and all that may-issue bull**** that city residents go through, he’s nuts.

    As you say, NYC gun laws have barely changed in a century; Cuomo’s SAFE act really did little to change NYC law. The rise and fall of gun violence in NY had nothing to do with city law or the Sullivan Act and a lot of ink has been spilled on what drove the violence. Getting that proposal implemented in the Red states would take an act of God, not Congress.

  4. I wonder what the permit fees would be? And would they be different for different classes of firearms? Personally, I would not mind the permitting if it was something like the permits to acquire here in Minnesota. They’re through our county sheriff and good for one year. Unfortunately, they’re only required when buying a handgun or assault-style weapon from an FFL.
    I have virtually nothing but muzzle loaders, but I’d be O.K. with registering them.

    • Was born and raised in Buffalo and Rochester. When I got my Upstate pistol permit it was a one time set of fees and the permit was good until revoked for cause; my old man got his in the sixties and only now has to do the renewals after SAFE was passed. Now the rest of the state is on a five year renewal for handguns. I think ARs have to be registered but so far, long guns are not regulated AFAIK.

      NYC is in a world of its own. My permit was not good there except to dash through the city without stopping and get to Suffolk County when I was in grad school. NYC has its own permits which must be renewed every 3 yrs. From the NYPD site:

      Review LICENSE APPLICATION FEES. The application fee for a handgun license and for renewal is $340 (three hundred and forty dollars). The application fee for a Rifle/Shotgun permit is $140 (one hundred and forty dollars). The fingerprint fee is $88.25 (eighty eight dollars and twenty five cents). Fees must be paid by credit card or money order (Postal or U.S. Bank). Money orders should be made payable to the “New York City Police Department.”

      And of course NYC only retreated on their premises permit debacle when it looked like the SCOTUS was going to hang them by their thumbs.

      I’m not adverse to some sort of compromise on regulation, but using NYC or NJ or CA laws as the basis for all 50 states will be an impossible sell to places where they are politically different and don’t have big city problems. As Ike once said, “the middle of the road is all the usable surface. The extremes are in the gutters”. Ownership should not be a financial hardship on the poor and regulations should be fair rather than punitive.

      • When talking about compromises with NYC or states like NJ or CA it makes me wonder what kind of compromises will be made with Virginia and Virginia gun owners this year. It’s going to be a very interesting legislative session for the Commonwealth of Virginia.

        When you say ownership should not be a financial hardship on the poor and regulations should be fair rather than punitive, is $340 for a handgun license and an application fee of $140 for a Rifle/Shotgun is punitive for the poor? I am reminded that in 2016 the Department of Justice issued a letter reminding city and state judges across the nation they can’t jail a defendant simply because that person can’t pay fines or fees. I believe a handgun license and fees are just that…fees. If a father or mother who is living on welfare and is fortunate to have a handgun to protect their family, how does he/she afford the “fee” for that weapon? Should the weapon be taken away? Should the person be put in jail? How is it that one can be forced to pay a fee (tax) for such a basic right…protection? ((Remember the courts have ruled that police have no duty to protect individuals) that’s if they’re around)

        New York now has ended “cash bails” in their bail reform law that was passed in 2019. It is reported one of the main reasons for the new law is that it is more fair for people living in poverty places.

    • Brent, having a licensing requirement for handguns and ARs rather than all firearms makes a lot of sense (I think Mike Weisser has opined on stuff like that here). Those are the things we worry about in crime and in mass shootings. Who is gonna storm into a school or church with a muzzle loader??

      • Except of course Handguns (we could even exclude revolvers from this) and AR-15s and their functional equivalents ARE the firearms American citizens own.

        Hunters hunt with AR Rifles except in locations where they are prohibited by arbitrary laws. They do this not only because they are inexpensive, light, and accurate rifles available in a vast variety of calibers, and can be switched from a long-range varmint gun to a dangerous game brush gun in a fraction of the price of buying a new gun, but also we have literally been sending an entire generation of Americans to fight in Iraq and Afghanistan, and they have been all trained on the M4 Carbine, and possibly the AK-47, so those rifles will feel much more familiar than a lever action or a bolt action.

        Americans use ARs and Pistols to defend their home, and you can argue that those are MUCH better choices than the pump action shotgun..

        And of course concealed carry is at a higher prevalence than ever before, and the number of states that don’t even require permits is on the rise, and those people are carrying semi-auto pistols, often with capacities of over 10 rounds.

        So when you say you oppose permits and fees for ALL gun owners, but are for permits for gun owners who own pistols and rifles, you’re really just carving out your VERY specific niche occupied by collectors, and aging hunters.

        Plus when you focus on hobby gun ownership rather than protection of human life, you really don’t have much justification for your little niche, do you?

        Plus a permit or a fee for gun ownership or, I might argue, to carry a firearm (Keep AND Bear arms) is the equivalent of a poll tax in my eyes.

      • Actually, if you believe the various literature, ARs are still a minor part of the total gun stock. Say, 15-25 million out of 300-400 million or ten percent at most. I think that is enough to be “in common use”, TBH. Pistols more common. But the devils on licensing are always in the details. Do I want an immature young man with diagnosed anger issues and threatening behavior running around with an AR? No. None of us has much to gain from that.

        Sure, you can hunt with an AR, whether 5.56×45 for varmints or 300 Blackout, 458 SOCOM, etc. for big game. And sure, the interchangeability is great. One can split that hair and limit magazine size and its just another semiauto rifle like the old M1 carbine. But let’s not confuse hunting with the basis of the 2A which was to provide that the United States could rely on universally equipped citizen soldiers in the true sense rather than a standing army. I doubt if Madison or Jefferson wanted militia members more likely to turn a smoothbore on each other rather than on the foe.

        As far as what is Constitutional? Moving target, I suspect, given the new Court majority. My wish is that the SCOTUS would step in and put some limits on the outrageous hoops that states like NY, CA, and NJ put in front of gun ownership; I agree that some of this reeks of a poll tax philosophy of rights denial. I’ve said before that I think that a happy medium would undoubtedly be Constitutional (in terms of current scholarship and historical gun laws that have been accepted in the US – see Winkler’s book) but so far the Supreme Court has not wanted to wade back into this fight. Let’s see what they do with the NYC case. Hopefully, not agree to moot it.

      • “Do I want an immature young man with diagnosed anger issues and threatening behavior running around with an AR? No. None of us has much to gain from that. ”

        We can quibble about what that means medically (we must note that when we look at the medical history of spree shooters, while they all posses some form of mental illness or another, those diagnosis are not uncommon and therefore not predictive of their behavior….but the Secret Service report notes that damn near all of those jerks told several people about their plans well in advance of their actions, and in the case of Parkland Local and Federal law enforcement was contacted, and did nothing….I would say THAT issue is far more of a problem than how many rounds fit in a magazine or not)

        But let’s take your statement at pure face value. Do I want a young man who is a ticking time bomb of violence to own an AR-15? OF COURSE NOT! But would you be comfortable with them owning a revolver? How about a pump action shotgun? How about a double barrel? Single Barrel? .50 Cal Muzzle Loader?

        Sure each step down that rung we’re lowering the danger….but even somebody with one of Brent’s front-stuffers is going to be one hell of a danger to the FIRST person they shoot at….and single-victim violent crime is still the #1 form of homicide, that’s the bulk of the 15,000 homicides per year.

        And that’s not even getting into them renting Moving vans, or buying gasoline and matches.

        Or how about just letting them walk with a drunk girl after the clubs let out?

        Really if somebody is a danger and we can predict that (there lies the rub) I’m not comfortable with them walking around unsupervised, let alone give them weapons of any kind.

        As for how much of a market the AR-15 is, I’d love to see your sources. Of course we also must note that foolishness like banning AR-15s and AKs, but keeping M1A, Mini-14s, and M1 Carbines legal is total foolishness. ‘

        So foolish that it would be irrational to think that a person willing to ban or heavily restrict one wouldn’t be willing to ban or restrict others.

        That’s really the crux of my arguments #1 The Second Amendment, if you want ANY of this crap first repeal that, and #2 why get so excited about laws and regulations that really won’t solve anything, and through their ineffectiveness invite more restrictions.

        remember, Australia banned huge swaths of guns in the 90s….and they are STILL asking for MORE gun control. Same with England, except the same people who were shrieking for gun bans, are now shrieking for FURTHER restrictions on knives to the point that tradesmen are being arrested for carrying screwdrivers and pruning shears.

        This is clearly a movement that doesn’t work, and simply brings about a slippery slope that NOBODY should want, so why not just NOT do that, and work on OTHER things to address violence and mental illness.

  5. Thanks for the info, Khal. Those fees are steep. And they have to be renewed every three years at those prices? Me no like.

    • Yeah, pretty steep if you are busing tables or working as a bike mechanic. Esp. since I am closing in on retirement and my disposable income will take a significant hit. I’d not be happy if I have to chose between the motorcycle insurance or gun fees. I like my vices left intact.

      I suppose the high fees are either to dissuade ownership or pay for the full freight for the licensing and registration program. Or both. At some point one has to ask whether, if Heller is the law of the land and gives us the right to have a hand cannon in the home (at minimum), why government can put high fees in the way of exercising an individual right. Kinda like a poll tax.

      Either something is a right or it isn’t and I guess we need to figure that out some day. But Federalism allows a little bit of leeway on some stuff but it also means New York can’t dictate to Montana what gun laws it needs or vice versa. And the Connecticut Compromise gives small states some power to push back on big ones.

      I am far more concerned with income inequality, social justice drivers of crime, improving education, and addressing climate change than with gun laws to be honest and see some of this Beto et al stuff as terrible wedge-creating issues. We will kill a lot more humans if island nations and some tropical areas have to evacuate to other places, all of which have No Vacancy signs posted. If we think illegal immigration is a problem now, stay tuned for the climate wars.

  6. And the Beto approach does make reaching common ground all the more difficult. I hope the new leadership in Virginia is more adroit.

  7. Sick of a racist New York Plutocrat who treats women like garbage, changes political parties when it suits him being in the white house, vote for a racist New York Plutocrat who changes political parties when it suits him for President!

    Bloomberg has been feeling out a Presidential run ever since he finished out his THIRD term as Mayor, and every time his internal polls showed that he was much hated by members of both parties.

    This year, with Joe Biden (who is an even worse human being than Trump or Bloomberg….which is saying something) and Elizabeth Warren (who has all the likability of Hillary Clinton, but without all the political connections), and Bernie Sanders, who actually has legitimate Grassroots support….but was willing to lie down when Hillary Clinton cheated him out of the first several Primaries with those Super Delegates, Bloomberg decided he had a chance to win the Nomination.

    I’ve heard it attributed to I Ching, and to Napoleon Bonaparte: “Never Interrupt your Enemy when He is Making a Mistake”.

    So I hope you can help him to victory, Mike!

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