Free Markets, Free People

If you can’t ban the gun, ban the ammo

That’s the apparent intent of a BATFE proposal as it applies to 5.56 ammunition.  The left, for years, has been trying to ban “assault weapons”, which are, essentially dressed up semi-automatic rifles.  Assault weapons, as you might imagine are capable of fully automatic fire.  Such weapons are already illegal without a very difficult to get permit.

Nevertheless, it is a long cherished dream of the left to implement gun control, because, well the key word is the second one – control.

So, having been absolutely and totally rejected when they tried to impose such laws, they’re decided to take what Marie Harf would surely characterize as “a more nuanced approach“.

As promised, President Obama is using executive actions to impose gun control on the nation, targeting the top-selling rifle in the country, the AR-15 style semi-automatic, with a ban on one of the most-used AR bullets by sportsmen and target shooters.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives this month revealed that it is proposing to put the ban on 5.56 mm ammo on a fast track, immediately driving up the price of the bullets and prompting retailers, including the huge outdoors company Cabela’s, to urge sportsmen to urge Congress to stop the president.

The pitch:

At issue is so-called “armor-piercing” ammunition, an exemption for those bullets mostly used for sport by AR-15 owners, and the recent popularity of pistol-style ARs that use the ammo.

The inexpensive 5.56 M885 ammo, commonly called green tips, have been exempt for years, as have higher-caliber ammunition that also easily pierces the type of soft armor worn by police, because it’s mostly used by target shooters, not criminals. The agency proposes to reclassify it as armor-piercing and not exempt.

But now BATFE says that since the bullets can be used in semi-automatic handguns they pose a threat to police and must be banned from production, sale and use. But, as Goodlatte noted, the agency offered no proof. Federal agencies will still be allowed to buy the ammo.

And, according the the article, there is no proof to provide.  None exists.

Of course, the AR15 is one of America’s most popular weapons and hundreds of thousands of them, if not millions are in the hands of Americans.  Certainly not a hard weapon for a criminal to get and use on police. However, they rarely do.  They tend to eschew small caliber arms for those which have a bigger punch in a handgun.

So, logically, that makes little if any sense.  As for the armor piercing capability, while I’m sympathetic to the point, a little proof of it being a problem would be helpful.  To this point, everything I’ve read says it hasn’t been a problem to this point.

“This round is amongst the most commonly used in the most popular rifle design in America, the AR-15. Millions upon millions of M855 rounds have been sold and used in the U.S., yet ATF has not even alleged — much less offered evidence — that even one such round has ever been fired from a handgun at a police officer,” said Goodlatte’s letter.

Even some police don’t buy the administration’s claim. “Criminals aren’t going to go out and buy a $1,000 AR pistol,” Brent Ball, owner of 417 Guns in Springfield, Mo., and a 17-year veteran police officer told the Springfield News-Leader. “As a police officer I’m not worried about AR pistols because you can see them. It’s the small gun in a guy’s hand you can’t see that kills you.”

Another manufactured “crisis” and another “solution” which involves government using its coerscive power to ban something that a particular political ideology finds odious – beside you being free, that is.  And, of course, it opens the door to more invented problems solved by more bans.

This is called “democracy”.  One side gets enough votes to seize power and then they force their ideology on you – if not by legislative means, then by executive action.  The document that is supposed to protect your freedom from government has been declared null and void.  Your freedoms?  Well, let’s just say that they’re up for interpretation depending on which faction is in power.   But what is for sure is they’re eroded and will continue to erode under this system of politics.  Government gets larger and more intrusive and as it does, it squeezes out your freedoms in the name of the “greater good”, or “for the good of police” or “the children” or whatever bit of gimcrackery they can use to attract enough votes.

Your freedom suffers the consequences.



Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on TumblrShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditPin on PinterestEmail this to someone

21 Responses to If you can’t ban the gun, ban the ammo

  • It’s like being rushed from every major compass point these days.
    Immigration regulations, EPA regulations, IRS regulations, BATF regulations, Healthcare regulations, Treasury refuses to account for money spent, FCC refuses to testify before Congress, etc, etc, etc
    Have pen, will do as we please!

    They can’t seriously be thinking it’s going to make them safer – M193 ball, etc will thru and thru anything but ballistic plate at pistol ranges and it’s hard to hide that AR in your waistband.

    Unless of course they’re planning on dealing with all their suspects from 600+ meters, which isn’t exactly a selling point for their departments IMHO.
    Could be they’re just buzzed with the M855 because it’s called “steel perpetrator?”
    Or maybe the next milestone will be the FMJ ammo too.

    • There are several possibilities here:

      1) Camel’s nose thinking.
      2) Symbolic action – AR-15 is like Wal-Mart and this is just a symbolic attack for his base.
      3) Dust in the eye – Obama’s just throwing out stuff to troll America
      4) The Feds fear the amount of AR-15 in the people’s hands.

      These are ranked in terms of likelihood

      • Test case to see if they can get away with it?
        Sort of drawing fire on the subject to see how hot the resistance is?

        There’s a lot more M193 for sale out there than M855.
        I never priced it before yesterday, since I’m not planning on hunting mild steel armored deer, so I can’t say if it was cheaper before.
        It isn’t cheaper now.

        • I have to say #2 is a good bet, and #3 too.

          I think #4 is a given, but they can’t figure out how to completely get around it.

  • This is not democracy, its called subversion and cowardice. Congress is suppose to set policy domestically, not the President. the Democrats are more than happy to go along. But the Republicans either agree with the policy or are too cowardly to do what it takes to take back Congress’ power.

  • That ATFluckers has contained rogue elements for decades. An attorney friend of mine defended a gunsmith client decades ago. The ATF had planted sears in his place of business that made civilian versions of the M1 carbine fully automatic. My friend proved that the parts bore none of the machine marks that the gunsmith’s tools produced. The gunsmith still went to prison.

    The ATF rules require that a showing of evidence be made to support this departure from the exemption. There is no such evidence. None.

    • “The ATF rules require that a showing of evidence be made to support this departure from the exemption. ”

      But we’ve ventured into a realm where 50% of us think Obama is doing a good job, where a quarter of the entire population, and 43% of people calling themselves Democrats think the President should/can ignore the courts if whatever it is he’s doing is “important”.

      Where highly placed people regularly lie about their particulars and many people argue for blanket forgiveness as if these powerfully placed, intelligent individuals are 5 year olds who just didn’t realize what they were doing and didn’t know any better. Where people actually worry about the career of serial liars being penalized for their lies and bemoan how tragic and awful it is that they’re being held accountable…because BOOOOSSSSSHHHHHH!!! Worse yet, serial liars that we know are lying and are NOT held accountable at all! One past President, one current President and two future Presidential candidates I can think of right off hand.

      Where the diet of lies grows daily, and we’re being held hostage to junk science that is clearly being used to restructure our life styles through economic blackmail and regulation.

      I’m not surprised the ATF is blackballing this ammo type without evidence or provocation, I’m surprised they haven’t blackballed ALL .223/5.56 ammo types short of ones fired from a Nerf gun just because they can and no one will stop them.

      It’s getting more and more depressing man.

      • Keep your head up, mi brotha.

        There is still a large segment of the population that is not delusional, not prone to being submissive, and not permissive of liars and tyrants. Take heart.

        Go out and teach.

  • It’s been a long slide to get here.

    First, our “duly-elected”s had to start building an un-elected, irrevocable, standalone, unaccountable-to-citizens-or-legislators, power structure.

    Voila! they created the alphabet-soup regulatory agencies.

    Once such a power-center is established, who controls it? Who decides how its leaders are chosen? Who determines its scope of powers? Who has the authority to
    decide that “XYZ” is a “national problem” requiring “management” by their agency? Who writes the resultant regulations? What standards do they use in determining what is “necessary and sufficient” to manage “the national problem of XYZ”? Who decides what force –and WHOSE force– should be used to enforce those new regulations? Who ensures that the (presumed) guaranteed rights of individual Americans are not infringed by each succeeding wave of regulations? Who has standing to complain, and what mechanism is in place to hear such complaints? Who is the final arbiter of its decisions? (I see no indication that it’s “We The People”, from whom all of government’s power and authority supposedly flows…)

    This country can’t go back to being the “land of the free” until we abolish all these Tiny Tyrannies (comprised of unelected, anonymous, extremely-powerful bureaucrats) which claim the authority, the right, and the necessity of forcing us to submit to their dictates-by-fiat. As it stands, individual citizens have little-to-no effective means of asserting their rights against these sons-of-Leviathan — and Leviathan doesn’t much care about our supposed “rights”.

    • Dass tru.

      You’ll find an excellent primer on whether the administrative law thingy is even really legal at PowerLine, and that points to a book on the subject you might find interesting.

      • Thanks, Rags – but could you help me with a link?

        I’ve looked back though Powerline blog posts to the 22nd and see only the post about AR-15 ammo; I’m not finding anything dealing with whether regulatory actions are lawful and binding. (- and no links to a book on the subject.)

        Maybe it’s just a case of “I expected to see ABC, so when I saw LMNO I passed right over it” — I’ve been known to do that!!!!

        (Now I have to cross my fingers that you’ll come back and re-check the comments on this post….)

  • If you are in the AR15 community, you are aware that at typical engagement ranges M193 actually outperforms M855. Both in terms of terminal ballistics (bullet fragmentation) and in terms of defeating armor plate. The reason is that M193 has a higher muzzle velocity. The fact M193 is cheaper is a nice bonus.

    The reason they are banning M855 is that they think they can ban it via the ’86 AP bullet ban.

    So they are banning it because they think they can. Not for any rational reason based upon actual performance.

    • Oh, and to add to that, M193 outperforms M855 (in terminal performance terms) out to about 200 yards IIRC, and they are more or less equal out to 300. M855 was designed to meet the NATO requirement to defeat a steel helmet at 800 M. Part of the reason for the requirement was that it was intended for squad automatic weapons as well as rifles. At the time the US was pushing for a larger 6 mm round for the SAW, and a shorter 5.56 bullet that would not require us to change rifling twist from the then standard M16A1.

      If you want longer range performance you want to step up to heavy match bullets like the 77 gr bullets used in Mk 262 or similar. They are more accurate then either M193 or M855, and retain energy much better. They can also have enhanced terminal performance. Although likely they don’t have better armor defeating properties (except perhaps at very long range).

  • Oh, and I have to add this, as well. Aside from the fact they shouldn’t be banning M855 at all, the impact as I see it is in cost. I have little M855 and usually avoid it, but it is made in many countries that use the standard NATO round, and excess is then sold on the civilian market. Banning M855 will reduce the total ammo supply, and hence drive up prices. Basically, they are erecting a barrier to ammo that will be produced in huge quantities regardless.

  • The “CRACK HEAD” OBININATOR that PRESENTLY sits in the “WHITE HOUSE” will not stop his executive ACTIONS any time
    soon. My “SOURCES” tell me that Obama will also try to BAN ALL STEEL BULLETS such as WOLF 223/62 g, 7.62×39 mm (AK AMMO)
    made by WOLF, GOLDEN BEAR, SILVER BEAR etc, etc . He will also go after (remember his time is short in OFFICE) 7.62×51 mm
    (308 AMMO), 300 WIN MAG AMMO, and all 50 CAL. BMG AMMO. The list is LARGE but HIS time is SHORT. REMEMBER his HLSD
    OWN AMMO or GO HOME. Sources also tell me THEY will also GO AFTER RELOADING SUPPLIES as well. WHEN only a FEW MILLION