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Remind me again why Sarah Palin is considered to be stupid

Here are her comments, via Big Government, on the issue of the “sequester” (or for those not following this story closely, the automatic spending cuts that will kick in if Congress/White House cannot get their acts together and actually produce a credible line on public spending and debt):

Palin said if Americans cannot “stomach modest cuts that would lower federal spending by a mere 0.3% per year out of a current federal budget of $3.6 trillion, then we might as well signal to the whole world that we have no serious intention of dealing with our debt problem.”

“If we are going to wet our proverbial pants over 0.3% in annual spending cuts when we’re running up trillion dollar annual deficits, then we’re done,” Palin wrote on Tuesday. “Put a fork in us. We’re finished.”

No, she is just a dumb hick from the Wild West who hasn’t studied her Keynes enough. As we know, great minds in academia suggest that what the world needs to do is print more money, rack up more debt, and in time, all will be well. Worrying about the debt is just so, well, suburban, darling.

75 comments to Remind me again why Sarah Palin is considered to be stupid

  • George Weinberg

    Well, if she really said “finished”, that’s why. It makes absolutely no sense.

    We’re “done”.

  • PaulH

    I suspect it’s because her next sentence was “We’re going to default eventually and that’s why the feds are stockpiling bullets in case of civil unrest” – a claim that had been debunked before she even made it. So she could be smart, or she could be dumb but right by accident.

  • Paul: do you happen to have a good debunking link handy?

  • PaulH

    http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2013-02-14/world/37094284_1_ammunition-requests-hollow-point-bullets-law-enforcement – It appears that the government is doing a bulk buy, as it does cyclically with many items including bullets. Now it’s possible that they’re doing it to to stock up beyond their routine needs, and it’s further possible that it’s as a violent hedge against civil unrest. And it’s possible that they’re smart enough to make such plans, but not quite smart enough to hide it. But it’s also possible that they’re just buying some bullets.

  • Perry Metzger (New York, USA)

    As the saying goes, “even a broken clock is right twice a day”.

    There are a lot of commentators in the US, both on the left and the right, who are generally off their rockers but who regularly say things that are reasonable amidst all the unreasonable things they’ve said.

    Palin is one of these.

  • the other rob

    Sadly, even she perpetuates the narrative that misrepresents a slight drop in the rate of increase of spending as a cut.

  • Mike Giles

    And although the Washington Post – like much of the American media – has it’s head well up Obama posterior, we should ignore that and accept their assurances. Except of course, it’s well known on this side of the pond that the government is stocking up on ammo, to point where we are starting to witness shortages in the US. Sigh

  • Mike Giles

    Excuse, that should be “Obama’s posterior”.

  • llamas

    Remember – as with the hysterical demonization of Bob Woodward taking place today – they don’t criticize her because she’s wrong, they criticize her because she’s right.

    The posturing of the Left in this area reminds me of this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4pmBC_CrQS4

    Debt? What debt?

    Deficit? What deficit?

    Democrats proposed, and Obama signed, the sequester legislation? Never happened.

    And so on.

    I love the way that Democrts manage to disguise tax increases as ‘closing tax loopholes’, as though the only reason these taxes aren’t already being collected is because of some devious shenanigans and they are just righting some natural wrong.

    Palin is righter than she knows. Boehner will cave, the sequester cuts – pardon me, reduced increases – will be restored and then some, and all will be funded by more ‘revenue’ = more taxes. The Republicans simply cannot stand firm on any cuts in expenditure – they’ve proved it the last 4 times at bat, why would we believe they will even try this time?

    But as everyone figures out how to stop feeding the revenue beast, it will all go sideways again. The default that she suggests is a very real possibility. Weimar could be the 51st state.

    llater,

    llamas

  • William Newman

    It’s interesting to compare the calming “take-these-two-official soundbites and you’ll feel all better” media coverage of the fluctuation in ammo purchase (from PaulM’s chosen debunking link above) with the final seven paragraphs of an AP article

    http://bigstory.ap.org/article/2nd-blizzard-bearing-down-plains-region-0

    that has been independently judged not to be left wing advocacy.

    (Ryan Maue complained on twitter “Every AP story on weather starts fine then at end includes climate change advocacy … it’s ‘left wing weather'”. Keith Kloor characterized that as “a bit feverish”) on http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/collideascape/ on February 27th, 2013 1:49 PM; alas, the discovermagazine site is so unhypertextishly broken that not only couldn’t I find a URL for that individual post, I couldn’t even cut and paste the date from that post.)

    The suitable coverage for a nothing-to-see-here-move-along fluctuation even gets an op-ed-style headline: “Not so sinister [...]“. The fluctuation that is to be hyperventilated about, not so much.

    (Was I irritated by Keith Kloor’s “feverish” remark? Why, yes, yes I was. After Journolist, and given the statistics on journalists’ political skew, I don’t think it should require extraordinary evidence to judge that a pattern of news coverage most easily explainable by a leftist agenda is caused by a leftist agenda. But hey, everyone is entitled to be ridiculed in public for their wilful blindness.)

    April Fools is coming up, I wonder how a journolist enthusiast would react if someone bamboozled him into thinking that a news outlet was running those seven paragraphs into the AP news feed with catastrophic climate change edited to be about some catastrophic right wing bogeyman. I don’t see how to do the edit for ammo, but there are other right wing bogeymen. E.g. “[two big plant closings have happened this month] but illegal immigration is also also shortening the productive careers of trained workers, the National Parity and Integrity Alliance said. ‘Those plant closings didn’t just occur in a vacuum. They are fueled by record numbers of illegal immigrants…'”

  • Laird

    PaulM, if you believe that anything published in the Washington Post constitutes “debunking” your sceptometer is seriously out of alignment. 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition (and they’ve bought several hundred million more rounds since that figure was released) is equivalent to over 22 years’ worth of the ammunition we used in the Iraq war at its height. It’s a staggeringly immense amount, more by orders of magnitude than they could possibly use for “target practice”. It’s so much more than ordinary government bulk purchases that, as has already been noted, it’s making it difficult for ordinary citizens to buy ammo. Visit your local gun shop or Walmart and take a look at the bare shelves. And of course the price for what remains available has skyrocketed.

    And it’s all hollowpoint rounds*, which are illegal for use internationally under the Hague Convention (they are considered “inhumane”). Which means that our military couldn’t use any of it (unless, of course, they were deployed domestically, a distinct possibility since for practical purposes Posse Comitatus no longer exists). So this is entirely for use by DHS and other domestic government agencies. If that doesn’t make you nervous you’re incredibly naive.

    * And I would note that hollowpoints are more expensive than regular rounds, so it makes no sense to use them for “target practice”.

  • Jaded Voluntaryist

    I suspect it’s because her next sentence was “We’re going to default eventually and that’s why the feds are stockpiling bullets in case of civil unrest” – a claim that had been debunked before she even made it. So she could be smart, or she could be dumb but right by accident.

    Debunked schmebunked – 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition is a very big number. The article you linked adopts the “golly gee whiz” tactic with its “its for 70,000 agents a year to be trained” spiel.

    People are bad at big numbers, and it is a common tactic for those who wish to bamboozle to throw them around and hope it will shut down debate. 1.6 billion into 70,000 is 22,287 rounds of ammunition per agent. Even if spread over 5 years, that’s a helluva lot of bullets.

    If what they are saying really is true, every federal agent in the country should have a permanent wrist sprain from the thousands of rounds of ammunition he is required to fire in training every year. Even spread across say a 2 week training course – it’s just not possible. They’d be shooting all day, every day, until their ears were bleeding and their hands turned purple.

  • Jaded Voluntaryist

    More fun with the math of big numbers.

    An M249 SAW belt fed machine gun can average 50 rounds per minute sustained fire without melting its barrel (although its moment to moment rate can be higher).

    If you employed a soldier to fire 1.6 billion rounds out of this machine gun, it would take him 60 years – shooting all day, every day.

    Or, if you like, 60 machine gunners firing non-stop for a year.

    And I might add, most of that 1.6 billion rounds are not machine gun rounds……

  • phwest

    The Washington Post article linked to is typical of the crappy writing that passes for journalism. It is asserted that the ammo purchases are simply for target practice and numbers are thrown around in an attempt to imply that is the case. An example – 750 million rounds over 5 years for training centers that apparently supported 70,000 personnel of one type or another. This implies a need for over 2,000 rounds per person per year – is that reasonable? Can’t tell from the article, but that seems to imply a large number of people going to ranges and firing an awful lot of shots (monthly sessions of 200 rounds a piece?) Maybe there are some officers who need that kind of practice, but 70,000?

    This kind of speculation is necessary because the article doesn’t actually provide the kind of information that would let you judge the purchases in context. In particular – how much ammunition was fired at those facilities last year? Surely the government know this number – if it was 150 MM rounds, then saying so makes it perfectly clear that the purchases are merely tracking what they are using (why they burn through that much ammo is another question, but at least it’s clear they’re not planning to stockpile the stuff). Or maybe it was 120 MM rounds but they are planning to handle another 20,000 officers and need to increase purchases to cover. From another angle – how many rounds did they buy over the last 5 years? Or the first 5 years of the TSA under Bush. Anything to give you some idea of how much of a change if any the current contract is relative to the past.

    Instead you end up with a bunch of numbers and no context. Just like the article that screams “the number of children who choked to death on trash they picked up doubled last year!” without mentioning that it went from 1 to 2, and has been between 0 and 4 each year for the last 3 decades. After reading this article I have no idea if its conclusions are justified or not, because the writer has no idea how to construct a logical argument. Bleh.

  • phwest

    Actually – they’re certainly not justified. They could be correct, but the writer fails to justify them.

  • Paul Marks

    Sarah Palin has good instincts and speaks her mind. Sometimes wrongly (like Ann Coulter – who also wrong sometimes and as loud when she is wrong as when she is right), but always honestly.

    But not a bad bone in her body (unlike friend Glenn Beck, who does have a dark side – I read that in him the first time I hear him, but I still like the man)

    Not wildly experienced in the ways of the elite media in 2008 – but the traps she went into were not falls, they were pushes.

    No one should speak to the msm other than live (and even then you should do your own recording) – so why did Sarah Palin agree to speak the media over days and let them edit? Give the msm that sort of power – and they will make anyone seem like an idiot.

    Sarah Palin was inexperienced – she took orders.

    The question is – who gave those orders?

    People who seem to have wanted the 2008 campaign to end in defeat.

    Although McCain-Palin still got more votes in 2008 than Romney-Ryan did in 2012.

  • PaulH

    Lots of interesting points, perhaps you can help clarify some things for me:

    1. I’m not a particular fan of the Washington Post (or the AP that actually wrote the story), it was just the first link I grabbed. So if someone can point me to a news source that isn’t biased then… well I won’t believe you, because I don’t think there is one. So I make do with what I can collect from a range of sources.

    2. I wasn’t arguing that they’re not stockpiling ammunition (though I don’t think the stockpile is as big as some sources suggest, in part because this is a 5 year purchasing plan), I was arguing against the idea that it’s to combat civil unrest. Clearly one thing in that arguments favor is that there are a limited number of things it needs to stockpile ammunition for – cost savings are one, but there comes a point where storage costs outweigh the savings. But if this is really to fight civil unrest, do they expect it to be so many citizens opposing them that they’ll need enough ammunition to fight an Iraq-sized battle for 22 years without resupply? And are they going straight to shooting people, or are there equally outlandish orders for water cannons, rubber bullets and CS gas that haven’t made the mainstream media yet? Anyone have sources?

    3. I don’t believe that this is the (sole) cause of empty shelves. For example, this post is from an online store that sold over 3 years supply of some magazines in 72 hours, as far as I can see *not* to the DHS. There’s a rush on gun equipment because of fear about school shootings, second amendment concerns, and the sort of nonsense Palin is pushing. And given that the government appears to be planning these purchases over 4-5 years if anything they’ll help the supply, as they’re giving manufacturers time to ramp up production (the market reacting to signals as it should).

    4. phwest – Excellent point about the sloppiness of the article, which I entirely agree with. It appears, nonetheless, to be as informative as any other out there. So as a general question, why would we conclude it’s to combat civil unrest when we don’t know how unusual an amount it is, how many people it’s to provide for, when it will be purchased, and which agencies are involved?

    Always happy to read the comments here, most enlightening…

  • PaulH: sorry, didn’t mean to set you up for an ambush – mine was a real question. The link didn’t work for me, but I get the picture thanks to everyone’s comments.

    In any case, whether this kind of massive ammunition purchase from the government is unusual or not is neither here nor there. The fact is that there are numerous government agencies that are heavily armed, and that – at least in my view – this administration is capable of all kinds of things we have not seen for many previous ones.

  • Laird

    As Alisa says, there are numerous government agencies that are heavily armed. When you have a government which sends out a SWAT team to collect on a student loan you know things have spun seriously out of control. Far too many federal employees (to call them “agents” is a stretch) are armed, and far too many local police forces are being militarized (armored personnel carriers, massive quantities of automatic weapons, etc.) thanks to DHS. Even if somehow the DHS could prove that they were using all that ammunition for “legitimate” purposes (which I don’t believe), the very fact that there is so much of it is ipso facto illegitimate.

  • PaulH

    No apology necessary, Alisa, you (inadvertently) helped me realize that ‘debunked’ was an exaggeration. Let’s go with denied :) Your comment about what the administration is capable of is interesting. It seems near universal that the opponents of a government think it capable of terrible and unprecedented acts, and that in due course they are proven both right (terrible things often, though not always, happen), and wrong (they’re rarely unprecedented). For example, I’m not a Democrat, but I shared their fear that Bush Jr would do something dumb, and we ended up in Iraq. A terrible thing from my point of view (no idea what the view of that war is here, btw, so not looking to start an argument on that topic!) but hardly unprecedented when you look back to Kennedy amongst others. Similarly the recent revelation about the Reagan administration’s actions in Guatemala are shocking, but they’re not even unprecedented within that country, and are sadly echoed in just about every administration for over a century.

    So you may be right, Obama may be pushing something horrible and nefarious. In fact I’d almost guarantee it, my only doubt being whether he’s doing it enthusiastically or reluctantly. I just haven’t seen a reason to think that this is it.

  • Jaded Voluntaryist

    I’m actually wondering if the government is allowing this particular “stockpiling ammo” conspiracy to go more or less unanswered because there is another, bigger conspiracy hidden behind it.

    Lets suppose that all federal agencies overestimated their ammunition requirements by a factor of 10. The resulting overspend would be enough money to fund an entire federal agency – possibly quite a large one.

    Maybe there is an alphabet agency out there we’re not supposed to know about, and the massive ammo spend is actually to hide their budget. If that’s the case, the government are probably just counting their blessings that all the conspiracy nuts are so worried about FEMA camps that they haven’t noticed the real conspiracy.

    This is all just speculation of course. But it is well known from declassified documents that this kind of book-cooking is exactly how black projects are hidden.

  • Schrodinger's Dog

    Normally I’m not one to subscribe to conspiracy theories, but this time I wonder just what is going on.

    Just why is the government buying all that ammunition? If it was expecting widespread civil unrest, surely it would be stocking-up on baton rounds/rubber bullets and CS gas instead? How often, if ever, have democracies resorted to live ammunition to quell disturbances?

    Hollow point ammunition is used by most police departments in the US. Meanwhile Laird is right: it’s a lot more expensive than the round nose variety, so using it for target practice makes no sense. There again, governments never were very concerned about costs.

    What is the government preparing for?

    I’ve got a few thoughts, but I’m loathe to discuss them on a public forum.

  • Hollow point ammunition is used by most police departments in the US.

    Why?

  • Why?

    Safer and more effective against non-armoured targets. In police usage, over-penetration is a *major* concern. You want the round in the person you fired it at and only in them, not the innocent bystander behind them after the round exits the other side of the target. Likewise in a gunfight, most rounds do not hit the target… and a hollow point has poor wall penetration compared to a FMJ, which is a major plus when trying to avoid shooting the wrong people.

    Oh and back when I was shooting I went through waaaaay more than 5 k rounds a year :D

  • Jaded Voluntaryist

    Because it is illegal for use in warfare under the terms of the Hauge convention of 1899, Alissa. The military don’t use it, only the police and feds.

  • PaulH

    That doesn’t really explain why the police *do* use it. I believe it’s because the flipside of the increased damage it does to whatever it hits is that it is less likely to pass through the intended victim and hit a bystander. In war that’s often considered a bonus, whereas on Main Street it tends to be frowned upon.

  • Sunfish

    Christ, I gotta come out of hiding for this crap?

    JV- hate to tell ya, bro, but you’re badly out of your lane. 5k rounds is not really out of line for a basic police academy, of which DHS operates two. 5k rounds a year is not horrible for sustainment training. A little expensive, but that’s about where my non- fed self is at when I can afford it.

    And my wrists are just fine.

    PaulH: no shortage of Super Socks or OC. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a purpose-built riot-suppression water cannon used in the US.

    Laird: The US never actually signed the Hague Convention banning hollow points. Not is it relevant. They’re far preferable to FMJ for defensive purposes, and are legal for that in 49 states (Joisey being the exception.) And I will go on record to say that anybody who had legal access to better, but still loads a pistol or rifle up for defensive purposes with anything other than JHP/OTM is not someone who knows enough to opine on un-related matters.

    As for the ‘why hollow point’ part, I have two answers: incompetence by some purchasing agent, and because the FBI needed a special downloaded version of the Speer Gold Dot to make their .40 Glocks cycle reliably. Without the specs on this ammo in front of me I couldn’t say for sure whether this is the same issue. Our whether this ammo was intended for an indoor range where cheaper exposed-base FMJ would have been a problem.

    If Uncle Sucker really wanted to cause an ammunition panic, they’d have bought out the .223 rifle rounds. Not a bunch of .40 pistol ammo, which is still available anyway.

  • If Uncle Sucker really wanted to cause an ammunition panic, they’d have bought out the .223 rifle rounds. Not a bunch of .40 pistol ammo, which is still available anyway.

    Exactly so. The whole stockpiling thing is a total canard.

  • Paul Marks

    The opinion of Sunfish is to be respected on this one – as it is based upon deep knowledge of the relevant facts.

  • Sunfish

    PaulH:

    Expressed in slightly different terms, you’ve got it. Hollow point and expanding bullets will cause an attacker to stop his attack far more quickly than anything else. That’s why we use them. That’s why i recommend them for defensive for members off the public echo are armed. That’s also why the military prohibition mystifies me a little.

  • Sunfish

    My apologies for the word salad above. Damn phone auto-correct.

  • Jaded Voluntaryist

    Sunfish, my comment about sore wrists was if that training was concentrated in away-days or weeks. 5000 rounds is doable for a year, but murder for a fortnight. It is also worth noting that your average fed will shoot a lot less than many American sport shooters, and on a more restricted range of weapons. They have basic minimums for qualification and many do not bother going beyond this unless they want to get into sniper-school at Quantico. Will there be agents going through 5000 rounds a year, or even more? You bet, but they wont account for more than a single digit percentage of all federal agents.

    Those sorts of figures just seem massively over optimistic.

    I’d be willing to accept say 800,000,000 rounds over 5 years for the entire federal government, but not 1,600,000,000. It is also worth noting that it is fairly unusual to use hollow points on a range, especially indoor ranges like what many of the federal agencies will use. Frangible ammunition is often mandated by the design, and those types of round were not mentioned as being part of this order, so if they use them it will have been purchased over and above.

    I don’t believe this is part of some conspiracy to enslave the American public though. I believe it is a conspiracy to defraud the American taxpayer. If after 5 years the American government has actually bought 1.600,000,000 rounds of ammunition, I’ll be very surprised. I’ll guarantee you that they’ll have signed the money out though – for something.

  • Oh yes, I remember now – thanks everyone.

  • Julie near Chicago

    PaulH, 9:53 p.m.: “…the recent revelation about the Reagan administration’s actions in Guatemala….”

    What recent revelations? How recent? Any links?

    Thanks. :>)

  • Laird

    I certainly respect Sunfish’s opinion on this (and hey, if this is what it took to bring you out of retirement it was well worth it!). I agree about hollow points being better for defensive purposes; it’s what I keep in my magazines at home, although I never use it for target practice. But I will note that while .40 S&W is still available, it’s gotten a lot harder to find and the price has gone way up.

    And I’m still not buying the government’s need for close to 2 billion rounds (which is roughly what they’re up to now, with the recently announced purchases), even over 5 years. Maybe JV is right that it’s cover for funding some black operation, or a funnel to get cash into someone’s hands. But whatever it is, it’s wrong.

  • Steven

    Or it’s just another case of “use your budget or lose your budget.” In the real world, saving money is good, but in government being fiscally responsible and not spending every dime in the budget means Capitol Hill gave you too much and will cut your budget next year. So you start looking for stuff to buy and some flimsy justification just in case someone asks. Got umpteen armed police type under your Department Of banner and a couple million you don’t know what to do with? Buy ammo. It doesn’t matter if it ever gets used in training, given to local police under a development grant, thrown in a fire just to watch it cook off, it’s all good provided the beancounters can’t show Congress your department didn’t need all that money in the first place.

    No tinfoil required on this one. DHS will give the local ammo to local police departments (40 Short & Weak is the favored caliber among cops these days) along with surplus APCs and money to train SWAT teams in Mayberry just to keep that budget money coming in. The spice must flow…

  • Follow the money. The middlemen in the ammo deal (the Evian Group) are Democrat party fundraisers. So they buy the ammo in bulk, mark it up and sell it to the dotgov. Easy-peasy.

    Now the fun bit. The company didn’t exist until a few days or so before the deal was announced, i.e. the company was set up to create a funding source for the new company’s owners. After the deal is done, the company will most likely disappear, the payoff duly made.

    All the above was linked by Donald Sensing over a week ago.

    As for the .40 S&W ammo, I know it very well. It’s pistol ammo, and all the dotgov agencies use it now. (I personally can’t shoot .40 S&W well, but others like it just fine.) Of course it’s hollowpoint — duh, HP works better than full metal jacket at stopping someone. The Hague Convention (no hollowpoint ammo in warfare) red herring is just that: irrelevant and pointless. We’re not talking about the US Army or Marines, here. The quantity? High, but not unreasonable — and it turns out, not as much as was originally reported — and given how the ammo market has recently experienced huge demand along with the concomitant shortages, a little forward-buying is probably justified.

    I have had over five thousand rounds of AK-47 (7.62x39mm) ammo for that precise reason. (Don’t even ask about .22LR or .38/357.)

    I AM curious where the feds got the money to buy this much ammo, though. But hey, if it’s payola for cronies, you can always find some spare change lying around, right?

  • Julie near Chicago

    Sunfish! Thanks for your info–and for your return. :)

  • Ed Minchau

    Bullets have many of the characteristics of a currency, and hold their value better than dollars. They can also be traded from agency to agency, and are an excellent way of hiding an off-the-books program.

  • Orson

    PAUL METZGER avars “There are a lot of commentators in the US, both on the left and the right, who are generally off their rockers but who regularly say things that are reasonable amidst all the unreasonable things they’ve said.

    Palin is one of these.”

    NOT. I actually watched Palin’s debate during the governor’s race for Alaska. That women is accomplished in doing what no alaska governor has achieved in many decades: getting a pipeline bill negotiate and passed for oil from Alaska through Canada and the lower 48 states; a new tax on oil for the state, not changed since the ’70s; and successfully negotiating with the federal government’s Department of Interior for Alaska’s interests.

    All of these attest to the Governor’s leadership intelligence. The scurrilous smears heaped on her are not only unwarranted, but the release of ALL her email while Governor failed to contradict this admiration. Instead, it only added to her exceptional character.

  • PaulH

    Alisa – http://consortiumnews.com/2013/02/21/how-reagan-promoted-genocide/ Note that I’m not picking on Reagan here, my point is that there’s something like this for most Presidents. This was just something I saw this week.

    Everyone – I’m liking the “spend it or lose it” conspiracy a lot better than the “civil unrest” one. Of course, that could just be a cunning ploy by the government to put us at ease…

  • punditius

    Well, I’m not even a novice concerning guns, but speaking as someone who worked for the feds for 40 years, 30 of them at the higher GS/Exec levels, I have to say that the explanations centering around incompetent procurement and Democratic log-rolling make absolute sense to me. Follow the money, as they always say.

    But then, I also think that Palin is usually in the ballpark when she comments on something. The media tries to make a glass of water out of anything she says or does, but when the dust settle, she turns out to have been a lot more right than wrong. So I suspect there might be something else at work here.

  • Kirk Parker

    Kim,

    Thanks for pointing out Sensing’s link. I have one question about the shell-company aspect, though: why is any middleman needed? Surely the big ammo producers are big enough that they can sell directly to the FedGov, aren’t they?

  • PaulH

    THanks for the link, that puts things in a new light. And credit to the author for pursuing the evidence. I’m not too keen on this snippet though: “But they are still buying a heck of a lot of ammo that, if continued at the published pace, definitely will come to billions over a longer time.” Entirely true, but I think we need to worry more that the White House catering section will, over time, buy trillions of dollars of food that will be unavailable to regular Americans.

  • 5000 rounds is doable for a year, but murder for a fortnight.

    Back in the day (i.e. when I was not living in the benighted UK) I burned through 1000 rounds+ in a weekend more times than I can remember ;)

  • Steven:

    Capitol Hill gave you too much and will cut your budget next year

    Well, yes – in theory, but when was the last time that actually happened?

  • A little bit of reality-oriented thinking goes a long way. Conversely, a little bit of evasion (and disintegration) goes a long way (the other way). SP exposes the delta between the two.

  • Luke

    Sarah Palin is far, far brighter than Dianne Feinstein or Barbara Boxer. And, unlike those two, she didn’t achieve her role in life by being a left wing harpy socialite married to a super rich husband who bought her a career in politics just to get her out of his hair. Therefore, she’s a threat and must be destroyed. She won’t assimilate into the Borg.

  • Brian Macker

    Stockpiling 450 millIon of bullet saves money? How do you figure that? Seems like it requires the support of a much larger manufacturing base that is idle much of the time, or increased storage costs. Just in time delivery saves money for a reason, and that would be going in the opposite direction.

    I doubt they are stockpiling anything. They probably just work 5 year contracts and take delivery as they use the bullets. There are way more private citizens with guns and their yearly purchases are eight times this. Over five years that’s a forty to one ratio. A 2.5 percent increase in demand by private citizens dwarfs the government purchase and is therefore more likely cause for price increases.

    Read an NRA article debunking this nonsense please. http://www.nraila.org/news-issues/articles/2012/federal-law-enforcement-agencies-buy-ammunition.aspx?s=DHS+purchase&st=&ps=

    Guys like Glen Beck and Alex Jones are morons. To bad they also communicate some stuff that is unpopular but correct. The good gets tarred with ” look at the source” the same as the bad.

  • Brian Macker

    As for Palin, she has over and over been mocked for saying true statements.

  • The “Sarah Palin is stupid” theme is an article of faith, and like any religious belief can’t be argued with. You can gain or lose your faith by experience, but can’t be convinced by logic. Sarah Palin HAD to be stupid because she made fun of The One in her first speech to the convention. To the committed Leftist that’s blasphemy and people who blaspheme must be cast into the outer darkness. It’s instructive to see how this was done in a culture that’s dominated by the Left. Even today we have the casual slur by participants making comments here, like a gaggle of high school girls rolling their eyes and giggling as a girl they hate passes by. Meanwhile the real Vice President gives advice on the use of weapons in home defense that would lead to your immediate arrest. Wasn’t he supposed to be the adult in the room?

  • Steven

    Capitol Hill gave you too much and will cut your budget next year

    Well, yes – in theory, but when was the last time that actually happened?

    I don’t know. When was the last any government agency ended the year in the black? It may just be the perception or fear that Congress will give you less next year if you don’t spend it all this year, but which agency director is going to be the one to find out? It’s safer to spend it all and then ask for more claiming last year’s budget just wasn’t enough.

  • Nan231

    Palin is one smart cookie, I know people in the oil industry who changed their minds about her after they found out about her Alaska oil negotiations.

    As for the ammo, yes it is for some black program, it’s called a ‘campaign’.

  • Midwesterner

    Sunfish and Kim both. A twofer. We should talk guns here more often.

    Back in the day (i.e. when I was not living in the benighted UK) I burned through 1000 rounds+ in a weekend more times than I can remember ;)

    Likewise back in the eighties. For a few sweet months, I never shot fewer than a couple hundred rounds per week. By reloading, I got my cost down to around 2.3 to 2.5 cents per round with an allowance for replacement brass. My only limit was the time it took to reload the ammo. Those were the days.

    I haven’t fired any gun in probably 25 years, but I went out last weekend to see if I could find reloading supplies and maybe trade ammo reloading to friends for some gun time. Not only was there no ammo in .357 or 9mm, there was no brass, no lead, and no small pistol standard primers. There were a couple cartons of small pistol magnum primers but at heart breaking prices.

    Darn.

  • Howy

    I saw a few articles that offered possible alternative reasons for the large increase in stock piling of ammo by the government but nothing that gave a good reason why those alternatives required such a large level of increase or that actually debunked the reason Palin suggested. And most of the sources for the so called “debuking” were government sources actually purchasing the ammo. Of course they are going to have what they believe are valid reasons.

  • RRS

    Getting back to the original contents of Sarah Palin’s Facebook page, it follows the deficiency and errors of the public discussion.

    However, as is so often the case, a subject can only be discussed in terms that the public has come to recognize.

    The media-generated term “Spending Cuts” is a shorthand reference to reductions in increases of current (“Baseline”) spending authorizations.

    There are no provisions (so far as I have been able to learn – I am open to instruction) for reduction in any of the current spending levels authorized by previous Continuing Resolutions (CRs). That issue is due to arrive, as the case of legislative diarrhea in mid-March. The current CR will expire and spending authorizations will have to be reestablished, either at current levels, reduced levels or increased levels, or at different levels for differing functions. It will be a fun time for all; especially for the man from Spotlight.

    The next CR will be a prologue to an ultimate demand for the enactment of a Budget, but not a guarantee that one will be forthcoming, even after four years.

  • It was the most stunning admission of distrust, and the most stunning admission of fomenting that same distrust that I had ever seen. Janet Napolitano’s memo about the right-wing extremism being the greatest internal threat that they can see. That returning vets disaffected and dissatisfied and trained are highest on the list. Report

    An acknowledgment that busting a move on second amendment rights would be used as a huge recruiting tool. Now see? That gal is prescient. Not only does she see into the future, she actually makes it.

    World Net Daily

  • Rick in Fla

    Bottom line is that the banker run government is out of control and most Americans could care less. What a bunch of fools. Like frogs in a pot beginning to simmer. But remember it’s all just a conspiracy theory nothing to see here.

  • LogicalUS

    “watched Palin’s debate during the governor’s race for Alaska. That women is accomplished….”

    But she threatened the ultra-moron, Barry Obama, and had to be destroyed by any means required.

    Jesus Christ would have been smeared and labeled a uncaring selfish lout and Mother Teresa a ‘hore if that was required to get Obama into office.

    Regardless of her accomplishments, statements or experience, it had to be smeared to protect the unqualified magic doofus, Barry Obama.

  • the other rob

    Read an NRA article debunking this nonsense please. http://www.nraila.org/news-issues/articles/2012/federal-law-enforcement-agencies-buy-ammunition.aspx?s=DHS+purchase&st=&ps=

    Sorry, Brian, but the NRA are very, very far from being reliable. The organisation has been taken over by professional lobbyists who love big government as much as the politicians and bureaucrats do. Witness their recent “School Shield” proposal, to be run by a man from DHS and consider that they are almost certainly going to sell us out over private sales.

    Sunfish et al are quite correct about the hollowpoint thing. I have them in all of my carry weapons, as well as those that I have laying around the house (with the exception of the shotgun, for obvious reasons and the L1A1, which only likes ball).

  • Even a broken clock is right twice a day. It’s still broken.

  • Julie near Chicago

    other rob:

    Lost the last ghost of the last vestige of respect for the NRA over that School Shield business. First rattle out of the box, “get the police to guard all schools.” Yeah right, only Government and yet more law can deal with this situation. No slightest hint that the right answer for a group allegedly in favor of RKBA might be to (train and) arm the teachers, or even have (trained and) armed parents volunteer to do guard duty–and also, to fight the “Gun-free Zone” theme. *SNARL!*

  • llamas

    Sunfish! There you are! Where the HELL have you been? Come back, all is forgiven.

    llater,

    llamas

  • the other rob

    Julie:

    Precisely. The way that the tosser also tried to throw the First Amendment under the bus rankled, too.

    That said and with due deference to GaryS’ “stopped clock” comment, they do, on occasion, hit one out of the park (as I believe they say in relation to the American version of Rounders).

    Case in point: An email recounting proceedings at one of that Feinstein woman’s hearings, which contained this gem: “Then, to the regret of every civil human being in the room, came Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.)”.

  • [...] to Samizdata for posting Sarah Palin’s comments [...]

  • Mo

    Palin right the majority of the time. The “stopped clock” line is bullshit. She’s been right a great deal more than almost any pol or pundit out there. No, not 100%, but who is? Joe “Insane in the Brain” Biden? Wow, we were sold that he was going to be the brains and experience to back up the Won; instead, he’s the most frightening VP in my lifetime, a senile or stupid, lying venal goof, a real humanitarian who gives about 1% of his money to charity (i.e. a typical lib), and gives advice on how to shoot a shotgun and get indicted on murder charges.

    Palin did make some major league errors of being a naif when it came to the media and the disgusting politics of the national GOP. But she’s been correct about the cronyism and corruption of the O admin that we’ve maybe NEVER seen in this country, was right about “death panels”, which will be the inevitable outcome of the NHS…oh, I mean, Obamacare…and she has hit the nail on the proverbial head about a great deal else.

    I’m not a Palinista; I recognized she did have some major problems as a candidate, but I still wish she were President and not the Leftist lying SCOAMF we have in office now.

  • PaulH

    Mo – One of the things I find most off-putting about political commentary, from either side, is when it resorts to extremes. As an example, I have no doubt that the Obama administration is corrupt. But if you think that it’s the most corrupt in the history of the Republic, well I refer you to the whole of US history. Another example of extremes is the use of ‘thin end of the wedge’ arguments. Obamacare may be a bad thing, but a) there’s nothing in it that automatically leads to the ‘death panels’ that Palin helped popularise, and b) we already have the functional equivalent, they’re just run by the private sector rather than the government.

    There’s an excellent case to be made against Obama. There may be a good case to be made in favor of Palin, though I’ve yet to hear it. But moving from argument to invective rarely helps create anything more than an echo chamber.

  • BigFatFlyingBloke

    PaulM, if you believe that anything published in the Washington Post constitutes “debunking” your sceptometer is seriously out of alignment. 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition (and they’ve bought several hundred million more rounds since that figure was released) is equivalent to over 22 years’ worth of the ammunition we used in the Iraq war at its height. It’s a staggeringly immense amount, more by orders of magnitude than they could possibly use for “target practice”. It’s so much more than ordinary government bulk purchases that, as has already been noted, it’s making it difficult for ordinary citizens to buy ammo. Visit your local gun shop or Walmart and take a look at the bare shelves. And of course the price for what remains available has skyrocketed.

    If you want a conspiracy that is less insanely dystopian then I can remember a comedian once saying the way to reduce the use of guns to commit crimes was to increase the price of bullets. This could be what they’re doing!

  • Laird

    If I may return to the DHS ammunition purchase sidebar for a moment, I now see that DHS has also purchased and retrofitted for use in the US over 2,700 Mine Resistant Armor Protected Vehicles (MRAPs). Why the government needs armored personnel carriers in US cities I’ll leave as a exercise for the reader. However, I will suggest that it’s of a piece with their inexplicably large purchases of ammunition.

    And PaulH’s chiding notwithstanding, I mostly agree with MO’s comment about Palin. (And making purely factual statements about Biden hardly counts as “invective”!) But PaulH is absolutely wrong about Obamacare: it does explicitly set up committees which can legitimately be called “death panels”, and there is no analog to them in most private insurance plans (although HMOs might be different).

  • lucklucky

    Compared to most politial-journalist class Palin is a rather intelligent person.
    But to PaulH’s of this world it seems she warrants a different set of standards…

    Maybe a month ago Cameron said the UK Government was reducing debt…seems he doesn’t know that reducing deficit it means there is still deficit, and deficit implies increasing the debt… anyone called him stupid?

  • PaulH

    Laird – There’s a difference between something that could be called a ‘death panel’ (i.e. a setting where you can discuss how you want your final days handled should it become an issue, which seems quite a libertarian idea to me), and what Palin and many others implied by the term, which was a panel that would decide when to kill you. To the best of my knowledge there’s nothing in Obamacare that establishes the latter. Now practically speaking there will be something that has that effect; Obamacare has a finite budget, which means at some point somebody will be refused treatment based on a cost/benefit analysis where their idea of the benefit will differ starkly with that of the governments’. But that’s not substantively different to the private sector, as I mentioned. If you have insurance you almost certainly have a lifetime claim limit*, as well as treatments that aren’t covered because they’re off formulary or considered ‘experimental’, so at some point you can be cut off. And if you don’t have insurance then the treatment you get is based not on your medical need, or even on somebody’s perception of your medical need, but on your ability to make money.

    lucklucky – I don’t hold Palin to a different standard, and I’m not particularly opposed to her. I think she performed woefully in the 2008 campaign, but find it hard to blame her too much for that as she was thrown in at the deepest of ends. I’ve seen little evidence that she’s particularly smart (though she’s certainly ‘canny’), but neither have I seen much that shows she’s stupid; mostly she seems to be quiet good at (often correct) soundbites, but rarely provides any depth to back them up. But the question in the original post was why she’s called stupid, and I pointed out something she said that (even while it could theoretically be true), would make her appear stupid to many reasonable people.

    *My tip is to be insured by a religious organisation; I worked for the insurance division of a church that had a member reach their lifetime limit ($2million, iirc). I presume they took a look in their religious book of choice and had a think about what the limit would mean to the person, because they promptly doubled it.

  • Brian Macker

    The NRA isn’t reliable but some anonymous Internet clowns who can’t do math are? Alex Jones is? Baloney. The purchases were not “all hollowpoint rounds”. That’s bullshit too. Heck they even buy blanks if you’d bother to read a reliable news article.

  • jdgalt

    I’m astounded nobody has even mentioned the fact that the “cuts” aren’t cuts at all! Spending is still increasing, it only looks like less because the administration has built some strawmen behind it to give a false perspective.

    The rats are already starting to leave this sinking ship of a nation.

  • Paul Marks

    jdgalt – quite correct.

    I apologise for not mentioning the fact that government spending is going UP.

    I have mentioned it on other threads – but you are quite correct, it is something of such fundemental importantce that it should be mentioned on EVERY relevant thread.

    Again – I apologise for failing to mention, on this thread, that government spendin is going UP.