Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle. Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. That psychic discomfort is the price we pay for basic civic peace. It's worth it. It's a pragmatic principle. Defend everyone else's rights, because if you don't there is no one to defend yours. -- MaxedOutMama

I don't just want gun rights... I want individual liberty, a culture of self-reliance....I want the whole bloody thing. -- Kim du Toit

The most glaring example of the cognitive dissonance on the left is the concept that human beings are inherently good, yet at the same time cannot be trusted with any kind of weapon, unless the magic fairy dust of government authority gets sprinkled upon them.-- Moshe Ben-David

The cult of the left believes that it is engaged in a great apocalyptic battle with corporations and industrialists for the ownership of the unthinking masses. Its acolytes see themselves as the individuals who have been "liberated" to think for themselves. They make choices. You however are just a member of the unthinking masses. You are not really a person, but only respond to the agendas of your corporate overlords. If you eat too much, it's because corporations make you eat. If you kill, it's because corporations encourage you to buy guns. You are not an individual. You are a social problem. -- Sultan Knish

Thursday, January 01, 2009

The 2008 TSM Retrospective

The 2008 TSM Retrospective

Happy New Year, everyone. "May you live in interesting times" is the apocryphal Chinese curse, and 2008 rose to the invitation. It's certainly been an interesting year here at The Smallest Minority. As we prepare to enter a new year, here's a look back at where we've been.

January started off with a bang, so to speak, when my wife was rear-ended on January 1 by a woman who was more intent on talking on her cell phone than in paying attention to where her two-ton SUV was going. I discovered that I was on a TSA list that prevented me from printing out airline boarding passes at home, TSM had its 1,000,000th site visit - not bad for less than five years on the Web - and the überpost o'the month was The Church of the MSM and the New Reformation. Now that the information clergy has elected their Pope, I'm wondering how happy they're going to be with him.

Hell, I'm wondering how happy we're going to be with him.

Being an election year, politics dominated the topics I wrote about all year long. February was no exception. One interesting comment very early in February that is fascinatingly topical again came from House of Eratosthenes with respect to Caroline Kennedy, who is now seeking Hillary Clinton's Senate seat.

I spent a week in Austin, Texas for some training, and met some other bloggers. One of the perks of this hobby is that, no matter where you travel, somebody there probably knows you. I discovered that my boss has a blog of his own. I got sideways with Fran Porretto on the topic of religion, (not my intent, I assure you). And the überpost of the month was Human Reconstruction, the Healing of Souls, and the Remaking of Society.

Be careful of what you wish for. You may get it.

Oh, and I also discovered that I have "The Knack."

In March the Supreme Court heard D.C. v Heller, and in anticipation of that hearing I pounded out Of Laws and Sausages: A Primer on Second Amendment Jurisprudence. Pack a lunch, it runs 13,000 words. In celebration of the hearing, I got my CCW. The TSA might not trust me to get boarding passes at home, but the FBI has no objections to me carrying a firearm. Eliot Spitzer resigned as Governor of New York after it came out that he liked high-paid call girls, and SayUncle had THE quote on that. After oral arguments before the Supreme Court, the representatives for D.C. gave a press conference. I fisked it. Then, towards the end of the month, Dahlia Lithwick, Slate's legal correspondent, wrote a column characterizing the Supreme Court's Heller arguments as "fall(ing) in love with a new constitutional right." New? NEW?!? Finally, I got a letter back from the TSA about my "person of interest" status that said, pretty much, nothing. Did they talk to the FBI?

In April there was no überpost, though I was working on one. There were some excellent Quotes of the Day, the best of which I think was this one. SayUncle recently linked to a piece from that month, Yes, Exactly concerning homicide statistics. I got my Boomershoot rifle put together (finally) and took it to the range.

May was a mixed month. David Olofson was sentenced to prison for knowingly possessing a malfunctioning firearm. The blog turned five. And I went to the NRA Convention in Louisville. Oh, and I was still on the TSA's list. The convention was a hoot. I've never seen that many firearms in one place before. Plus, I got to meet a lot of people. I even got pictures of a few. It was in May that I started selling the McCain bumperstickers. And I wrote a little piece on the Tucson Unified School District's "Ethnic Studies" program entitled Balkanization. That topic has dropped off the radar here in Tucson. I have no idea if anything has changed at all, but I'm betting "NOT!"

June was a wonderful month. I finally hit "Publish" on the überpost I'd been working on for months: The George Orwell Daycare Center. That one drew a lot of traffic. YouTube had a 48 minute video of a speech by Naomi Wolf that I linked. I still think it's worth your time if you haven't seen it. Alex Kozinski, Chief Judge of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, had to recuse himself from an obscenity case when a reporter "discovered" that Kozinski had some naughty pictures of his own on the family PC. That post is still drawing dozens of hits a week from people searching out the pictures in question.

Perverts!

I asked a question that I'm still taking answers to. I got a shot (pun intended) at going to Blackwater and shooting Para USA's guns and ammo. The McCain stickers were still selling. The Supreme Court handed down their 5-4 decision in Heller, and there was much, but muted, rejoicing.

And, finally, I posted a reminder of what we can expect starting January 20.

July was another good month. After waiting over a year, I finally got my CMP M1 Carbine made by IBM, "Baby Blue." I was chosen as one of the ten bloggers who got to go to Blackwater. I posted an hour-long Charlie Rose interview with author Michael Crichton, and we finished out the bumpersticker sales with a total of $375 donated to Soldier's Angels. Thanks to everyone who bought one or more.

But it wasn't all good. Dr. Randy Pausch lost his battle with pancreatic cancer, and the topic of the "Three Percenters" first hit the blogosphere. I weighed in with The Four Boxes and The "Threshold of Outrage".

August was . . . interesting. I got a mailing from the Republican National Committee that, naturally, I just had to respond to. The "Three-Percenter" topic picked up steam, and I posted Freedom, Hope, Outrage, Bright Lines, Revolution and End Times. I commissioned a new graphic for the left sidebar of the blog that's staying up through the Obama presidency. I put my '67 Mustang up for sale. I finally came off of the TSA's list. I went to Moyockistan, NC and got to shoot Para's guns and ammo at Blackwater, picking up a bunch of swag in the process, though I doubt they'll invite me back. Still, if I ever win the lottery, I know what I'm doing with some of the money. And I'm still the #1 Google hit for "Klingon marital aids." Oh, yeah. McCain announced that Sarah Palin was his choice for VP.

September began the economic toboggan-ride. The Palin topic took up most of the first half of the month. Sitemeter did a bone-headed "upgrade," but at least listened to its customers and went back to Sitemeter "Classic". The mini-überpost for September was How You Know When There's a Problem, about the ongoing financial disaster. And in the spirit of that piece, along with several other bloggers, I posted Kipling's The Gods of the Copybook Headings. I need to commit that one to memory.

Another small "alternative" newspaper decided that it was their First Amendment right to publish the names of all the CCW holders in the county where the paper was published, noting "They mostly seem like ordinary folks." I had something to say about that.

October was busy. I posted the short Yuri Bezmenov video discussing Soviet "Active Measures" very early in the month. That's drawn a lot of traffic, too. The FedGov decided to give away $700 billion in tax dollars to businesses who had just proven that they were unable to make it in the marketplace. Bill Whittle explained why the .gov doesn't (and can't) work. He did it with visual aids and briefly. Then a Rasmussen survey showed why we the people aren't going to fix the .gov. My wife and I attended the Third Annual Gunblogger's Rendezvous and had a great time, despite the cold and the snow. Joe Biden warned us that Barack Obama "would be tested" in the first six months of his administration. I guess his Hawaiian vacation is to get him rested up to take the reins on 1/20 in anticipation of that test. I had an interesting email exchange with an Obama supporter in my office.

We're so screwed.

I sold the Mustang. I decided to spend some of the money from the that sale on a .308 gas-gun. I'm getting a custom-built M14.

In about another six to eight months.

Oh, and the UK government finally admitted that they'd been cooking the statistics on violent crime there. For years.

November? Election day. At least that's over now. The "Three-Percenter" discussion? Not so much. Early in the month I wrote Philosophy, Revolution, and the Restoration of the Constitution. About the election, I think Billy Beck said it best. To top that off, Michael Crichton died. Dammit.

On November 11 I placed an order for a Bullberry Encore barrel in .260 Remington. I received it yesterday (pictures coming later.) Not bad service when they quoted me three months!

Gas prices came down. Way down. Funny how that "invisible hand" thing works, isn't it? I received a nice calendar from Para USA and a video of one of my runs through the Blackwater shoot house. Too cool!

Professor Victor Davis Hanson had some things to say about the American education system. I wonder if he'd like to read The George Orwell Daycare Center?

And, finally, December. It's been a busy month, too. I've been working 60-hour+ weeks on an out-of-town project, and have had the Christmas/New Years holidays to do a little recharging. Blogging has not been high on my list of activities, and won't be going into January. I've been working on an überpost for a couple of months now, but the "Three-Percenter" topic came up again, and I managed to excerpt a chunk out of it to make the post Fantasy Ideology. That drew some commentary. It created a sh!#storm, too, that resulted in only the second banning of a commenter here, ever. I'm still reading Billy Beck, and still learning from him, but he just does not play well with others.

Well, that's my "Year in Review." Thanks, again, for your continued patronage. After hitting 1,000,000 site visits in January, y'all have added over 330,000 more this year, more than 900 a day. Not bad for a third-tier gunblog.

I think I'll keep at it.

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