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November 20, 2006

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Is Bush Watching The Store For Gun Owners?

Last month, a gunmaker friend of mine was audited for two weeks by the BATFE, who found the usual number of small errors and omissions in 20 years’ worth of 4473s, and two rifles that couldn’t be accounted for. Then next week he was informed that his manufacturer’s license, which was up for renewal, would not be renewed. No reason given. His life’s work and his livelihood, and that of a dozen other people, down the toilet without a word why. Our government at work.

I mentioned this to a friend of mine who is an elected official (Republican) and a Bush supporter (though rapidly running out of patience) and asked if this sort of thing wasn’t odd under an administration that is supposedly friendly toward gun owners. After all, smart bureaucrats take their direction from the top, and a high-handed BATFE was something that we expected to see from Bubba Clinton, not from W.

His answer surprised me.

“There’s a lot of that,” he said. “Not only the BATFE, but the Fish & Wildlife Service is refusing to grant CITES permits without giving a reason, and often in contradiction of their local offices. They’re screwing the hunters, too.”

“Why?” I asked.

“Because Bush isn’t watching the store. He’s so preoccupied with Iraq that these guys are running amok and no one’s stopping them.”

Just one more bit of good news to pass along. I’d be interested if anyone else out there knows anything about this.


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» forsook from SayUncle
Says the gun nut: Last month, a gunmaker friend of mine was audited for two weeks by the BATFE, who found the usual number of small errors and omissions in 20 years’ worth of 4473s, and two rifles that couldn’t be accounted for. Then next week he was... [Read More]



It is one thing to not guard the store, it will be another thing to give to order to rob the store - which you will see in the next couple years with a democrat controlled congress.


This post has nothing to do with Politics, more to do with good reading.

Will you answer me one question, Now that Col Cooper is gone, who will fill his shoes and comment on everything hunting and weapons related? I know you don't work for that other magazine G&A, but maybe you could help them fill in the huge hole left by the passing of Col Cooper! How about it?



Ralph the Rifleman

I agree with you that if these facts are true; shame on the gate keepers in the BATFE.It sounds like 20 years of record keeping, with only 2 major errors, seems like a darn good track record. If this is happening now...I hate to think what may happen with the Dems controlling the congress!


It doesn't surprise me when something like this happens. Rather, its likely that some moronic bureaucrat who was too incompetent for one position was promoted just high enough to make themselves dangerous to the public in just this way. It reminds me of back during the Clinton era when gun control legislation (read law abiding citizen prohibition)seemed to be an everyday occurance. People would parrot the mantra "as long as we have a second amendment our gun rights can't be taken away". Well that's B.S., just ask people who live in such pro civil rights areas as New York, Chicago, or Washington, D.C.. I agree with Dave that there are some tough times ahead for us gun owners. I wish I had a solution.


What's new? They say you get the government you deserve in a democracy! Petzal, sounds like you have a case of buyers remorse.The man could screw up a wet dream.

Dave Petzal

To Concerned Soldier: Ah, would that I could fill the enormous boots of Jeff Cooper. But I am, quite consciously, following two principles that he used in his Commentaries. First, he wrote on a great many subjects; guns were only a part of it. Second, he was intensely political, far more so than I am. He realized that you can't be a gun owner and be non-political, or else you will eventually find yourself a non-gun owner.

Keep your head down and have a Happy Thanksgiving.

Ralph the Rifleman

Well said...



There's always oversight in Government. A person just has to find the oversight agency...which I have found is sometimes quite difficult...and report the abuse. The additional satisfaction is beating the creeps at their own game.

...And they wonder why we are the way we are.


Two years ago, had the Republicans suffered the beating they got a few weeks ago I would still be drinking to kill any brain cells that might remember the sorry episode. However, given the way the GOP has acted over the past two years, I say f*** 'em! They have spitted on the legacy of Reagan, not the least is by continuing to allow the BATF to torment and harrass gun-owners. To anyone out there is truely believes George Bush is a friend of the Second Amendment: YOU ARE A FLAMMING JACKASS! YOU HAVE THE INTELLIGENCE OF A TWO YEAR OLD AND HAVE BEEN DUPED INTO SWALLOWING HOOK-LINE-AND-SINKER THE NEO-CON PROPAGANDA THAT THEY WILL DEFEND THE BEST INTERESTS OF HUNTERS AND GUN-OWNERS IN GENERAL! Fine, I'll admit that when Bush first ran he talked the talk well and seemed like a breath of fresh air after 8 years of Klinton. However, we should all be able to know by now that was a crock. He was lying through his teeth to gun-owners to get our votes just like he does to evangelical Christians. Now that the elections are over, we are useless and he is more than happy to stab us in the back. Et tu, Dubya? The BATF is the enemy of the Second Amendment pure and simple. I doubt anyone here would debate that. Bush has not done a goddam thing to reign those thugs in. Accept it. The Dems can introduce as much gun control as they please because while they are in the minority, the Republicans are only a few seats behind. They have a chance to come back in 2008 and they know it. Most of the Republicans who were cleansed were neo-cons so expect a more conservative minority who is NOT interested in pissing conservative voters (read: gun-owners) off any more than they are now. The Dems may control things, but don't expect any major laws to pass.

P.S. Dave, I enjoyed your recent F&S article on the ten guns you own and plan on taking to the grave. However, I am disturbed by the fact that in the photo of you surrounded by your prized possessions, there are only 9 firearms present. Ommitting such a treasured weapon from the picture should be considered a mortal sin, akin to a family taking a group photo and leaving out Rupert, the little fat kid nobody likes. So which missing rifle (or shotgun) is your Rupert?

Dave Petzal

To Matt: I gather you are displeased with Mr. Bush. That aside, I can't account for the missing gun. My thoughts at the time were on the wool shirt that the photographer made me wear in August, and whether I would have to spend the weekend in jail if I killed him. Aside from that, I'm all for leaving out fat kids named Rupert. We should have photos only of slim, beautiful people with normal names.


Yes, Dubya has been rubbing me in the wrong way (and I DON’T mean that literally) for a while now. Anyway, I was able to deduce that your “Rupert” left out of the photo is the Seeley Masker .220 Swift. And by some quirk of fate, said rifle both has an abnormal name and (at least in its first life) was butt ugly, thus living up to your desire for only slim, beautiful people (or guns) with normal names. Cheers.

JA Demko

Better quit busting on Rupert. Kids like Rupert are the ones who grow up to head government agencies like the BATFE.

Paul A'Barge

Before I believe this to be anything other than an urban myth being born, I'd like to you to name names, companies and dates. And, I'd like you to validate that the NRA was notified and did nothing.

Putting stories like this out in the public domain without attribution or checkable facts just riles up the natives who are already restless. That's not responsible.

Prove it.

Dave Petzal

To Paul A'Barque: You are going to have to take my word on the BATFE episode; of that I have personal, first-hand knowledge, and don't want to give the specifics because as far as I know, the gunmaker is trying to get some kind of relief, and that might only make his job harder.

As for the rest, it may well be apocryphal. That's why I'm trying to find out if anyone else can add anything factual.

JC Blauvelt

Check out this article. http://www.theoutdoorwire.com/tow_final.php?date=2006-4-3

BATFE is still out of control. They are now harassing gunsmiths for back taxes on guns they did not make but only worked on or upgraded. Even tho a law was passed to exempt small gunsmiths from paying the excise tax, BATF is looking for the taxes PRIOR to passage of the law. This is just plain harassment with an agenda.

Ralph the Rifleman

Thanks for the info...

Richard A Smith

It seems that we need to prevail upon our Congress-critters to reign in these agencies that think they are a law unto themselves. While we're at it, we should do what we can to remind all of these government grubbers that they exist to serve us, the people, not the other way around.

At the very least, it would be good to amend the laws that created and fund the BATFE and their ilk to require that any licensing refusals, non-renewals or cancellations be justified acoording to established rules, laws and protocols. In other words, at least have the courtesy to tell us why.

It is a bad thing when the people fear the government more than the government fears the people.


Bush and all the other neo-cons don't give a damn about any of the groups that support them. Go and read up a bit on the neo-con ideology, that they are perfectly fine with lying their butts off to get what they want, that the end justifies the means for them. Even the hard-core religious groups are beginning to understand that they were just used.

Government is so whacked right now, mainly because of the current situation of the Republicans ruling from the fringe. This leads to wild swings in government, with neither side respecting the wishes of the other. But at least the billionaires are happy with our government.


It would be nice to see some facts on this. He said she said is nothing but BS. Facts and data prove substantiate. Unfounded accusations never prove anything and in the long run hurt the cause.

Dave Petzal

To Steve: Perhaps I misapprehend the nature of a blog. Aside from the straight gun stuff, I thought that this was a place for innuendo, unfounded accusations, wild rumors, and unsubstantiated slander. You know...sort of like the CBS Evening News with Dan Rather.

Mike Diehl

Well, part of the problem is that lawmakers feel like they're not doing anything unless they're writing new legislation. Maybe it's time we started voting for lawmakers who take satisfaction in repealing old legislation.

Of course, which legislation you want to repeal is always a matter of even handed and rational debate. ;)


It's not that Bush is highly motivated to preserve the Second Amendment... he's just not as bad (regarding gun rights) as Bubba. Let's remember that Dubya clearly stated that he was willing to sign a renewal of the "assault weapons" ban if it were brought to his desk.

craig curtis

Dave its the cbs evening news with Katie Couric now . a little biased and left but shes so cute !!!

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