Tuesday, April 17, 2018

April 17, 2018 -- A Quick Run Around The Web

"Basic Sling selection for the M4/AR-15"--Garand Thumb (13 min.)
A look at pros and cons of single and two-point slings, and some recommendations.

  • "The Quickest Way I Know To Get a Family of Four Prepped for The Coming Collapse (Updated for 2018)"--M.D. Creedmore. A quick start guide on quickly putting together food storage, options for storing and filtering water, a couple recommendations for firearms for hunting and self-defense, food production, emergency power, and some odds and ends.
  • "Why Do So Few New Calibers Manage to Become Popular?"--The Truth About Guns. The author briefly examines what calibers are popular and discusses some calibers that have come and gone. He concludes: "Why do you think this is? If asked, I’d guess it’s just the cost of buying and the availability of new and relatively rare (anything new will usually be scarce) ammo more than anything else." Cost is a factor, as is whether a particular platform uses the caliber. For instance, the flood of cheap AKs and SKSs certainly played a part in making the 7.62x39 one of the most popular centerfire rifle cartridges in the U.S.--the availability of cheap ammo merely cemented the deal. But I also believe that a lot of shooters (myself included) ask whether a new cartridge does something that they can't already do with an existing cartridge--at least, whether there is enough of a difference to make it worth it. It's hard to beat the .30-06 and .308, so those will remain popular. On the other hand, the .40 S&W doesn't really do anything better than the 9 mm (or .45 ACP for the more traditionally minded), and it costs more and recoils a lot harder. The problem for a lot of new AR cartridges is that they really aren't any better than the 5.56. .300 Blackout is somewhat of an exception in that it is superior for an SBR or pistol AR, so I suspect that it will hang on (my belief on this also seems bolstered by lower costs and increased availability of the .300 Blackout). .224 Valkyrie has potential because it appears that it can do a lot of the same things as the .243 Winchester, but out of an AR15 platform. 
  • Related: "America’s Most Wanted Ammunition"--American Hunter. A look at Federal's top sellers in 2015. The top three: .223 Remington/5.56, .308 Winchester/7.62 NATO, and .30-06 Springfield.
Of course, .22 Long Rifle dwarfs them all: estimates of annual production is between 2.5 and 5 billion rounds per year.
  • "The Color of Gun Crime in America’s Big Cities"--The Unz Review. The author of this piece hits back at claims in the media that "white men with guns are America's biggest terrorists," "the NRA is a terrorist organization," and so on, with some inconvenient (for the left) facts. Looking at New York City, the author observes:
        This means that in 2016, 88.3 percent of those arrested for murder or non-negligent manslaughter and 96.7 percent of those arrested for shootings were black or Hispanic. The data in the 2015 edition of “Crime and Enforcement Activity in New York City” are almost identical. All this in a city where whites comprise about a third of the population.
            Assuming arrest data are a good measure, whites in New York City are almost wholly innocent of murders, non-negligent manslaughters, and shootings.
      He also looks at crime statistics from Philadelphia, Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Los Angeles, New Orleans, and Chicago. They all tell a similar tale: whites account for very few of the murders and gun crimes. So, comments that white men with guns are terrorists, or even unusually dangerous, is a lie.
      • "Accurize Your AR-15"--Guns & Ammo. The author built an AR using a premium barrel by Proof Research, but was unable to get very good accuracy from it with any load. He ended up lapping the face of the receiver to make sure it was square to the barrel/barrel extension; and used Loctite 620 ("a special high-viscosity, industrial-grade Loctite designed for setting bearings and other cylindrical devices") to make sure his barrel was fitting into the receiver tightly and without any slop. It worked, reducing his group sizes by half or more.
      • "The Best Ways to Cook Every Cut of Venison"--Outdoor Life. Useful information for those that hunt.
      • "The Best Free Medical References Available- Updated"--Active Response Training. Get 'em while they're hot!
      • "Massachusetts High Court Strikes Down Stun Gun Ban"--The Volokh Conspiracy (h/t Instapundit). The author notes: 
        By my count, this means that, since D.C. v. Heller, stun gun bans have been invalidated or repealed in Massachusetts, Michigan, Wisconsin, D.C., the Virgin Islands, Overland Park (Kansas), and Annapolis, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Tacoma, Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Harford County, and Howard County (all in Maryland).
        • "More evidence that it’s COLD not WARMTH that hurts humanity"--Watts Up With That. The article relates that "[a] recent study published in an esteemed academic journal indicates that volcanic eruptions in the mid 500s resulted in an unusually gloomy and cold period" due to dust and aerosols in the atmosphere. The reduced sunlight led to lower temperatures and adversely affected crop production and livestock. Reduced sunlight also meant that people produced less Vitamin D,  which compromised their immune systems. In that vein, the article notes:
          The unusually poor years coincide with the bubonic plague epidemic that devastated the Roman Empire. The epidemic caused by the Yersinia pestis bacterium began in 542 CE and killed approximately half, or more, of the inhabitants of what was then considered the Eastern Roman Empire. The plague spread through Europe, from the Mediterranean, possibly as far north as Finland, and had killed tens of millions of people by the 8th century.
          • Running out of other people's money: "Harvey, the first domino in Illinois: Data shows 400 other pension funds could trigger garnishment – Wirepoints Special Report"--Wirepoints. Harvey, Illinois, is one of the hundreds of local government entities in Illinois that has underfunded its public pensions (or, if you prefer, overpromised on its pension benefits). But it has done a particularly bad job, and the piper has come calling. In the case of Harvey, at first a judge ordered the town to raise its property taxes to make up for low funding of the pensions, but the town didn't use the extra money for that, so now the unions have gone to the state to have the state garnish Harvey's tax revenues and apply it to pensions. Harvey is not threatened with having to lay off city employees, including police and fire personnel. It is a tragic conundrum to property owners in the town: higher taxes will drive people to sell or abandon properties to get out from the tax burden, while others will move away as the city reduces its services; more properties going on the market combined with higher taxes will reduce demand (and, hence, value) of the properties; a lower tax base means that the town will either have to increase taxes and/or cut services further, which will drive more people away....
          • The decline of civilization: "REVEALED: California trains are now late 15% of the time because of homeless camps on the side of the tracks"--Daily Mail. This article places the blame on increased trespassing on rail right-of-ways, requiring trains to slow or even stop. However, there is a bit more to the story than that. The Sacramento Bee reports:
            The reasons aren’t limited to trespassing. Agency officials say the rail line's problems with track signals, bridge closures and mechanical issues have been higher than usual. The number of vehicle strikes at street crossings has tilted up as well.
              New York City is typically not the first place that comes to mind when one mentions the word “quarterstaff.” For the average individual, unfamiliar with the history of western martial arts, the term is far more likely to conjure up images from “Robin Hood,” or of the medieval European peasantry. Yet, during the late nineteenth century, it was a Manhattan-based fencing master, Colonel Thomas Hoyer Monstery, who produced one of the few treatises on self-defense technique with the quarterstaff—the first such treatise to be published during the nineteenth century, and the only one to be published in America prior to the twentieth century.

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