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

All politics in this country now is just dress rehearsal for civil war. -- Billy Beck

Thursday, November 10, 2005

One More Example of the Futility of Prohibition

I have posted previously on the illicit gun manufacturing industry in Pakistan. (Check out some of their work. It's exquisite.) Dave Kopel, in a February 6, 2002 NRO piece reported that residents of the island of Bouganville, blockaded by Australia in their fight against mining interests and the governments of both Papua New Guinea and Australia, had begun making functional copies of the fairly sophisticated M-16 automatic rifle. They'd started out with crude single-shot weapons, but had learned, rapidly.

So I'm not at all surprised to find out via David Hardy that there are gunmakers in the Phillipines manufacturing handguns and submachine guns at remarkably reasonable prices. Here are the key parts of the Taipei Times piece:
Ronberto Garcia picks up a freshly-made, well-oiled automatic sub-machine gun from a formica table under a huge gazebo and screws on a long silencer.

"We sell these guns to anyone, provided they have money," Garcia says, proudly showing the weapon to a group gathered in his heavily secured concrete home.


"We are just plain businessmen who sell something people want," the portly 53-year-old Garcia said in his home....


Guns made in Danao have become so famous that Japanese Yakuzas were known in the past to fly to the central Philippines to collect them, townsfolk say. Military officials as well as local politicians also buy them for their own purposes.

"Everyone buys from us. The military officials, some foreigners too, and civilians for their protection," Garcia says, but stops short when asked if he has ever sold firearms to communist guerrillas who proliferate in the countryside.

Danao guns are bought on a cash basis, and deals are done without any papers changing hands. Word of honor is important between buyer and seller and anyone seeking to buy is screened thoroughly.


There are no actual figures as to how many guns are produced in Danao at any given time, but Garcia estimates up to 500 units of various gun models are smuggled out of the area every month.
Father Guido Sarducci's Five-Minute University, Economics: "Supply and-a Demand. That's it."

When guns are severely legally restricted, a black market will spring up. A lucrative black market. And the people the legal restrictions were enacted to disarm will still be armed. But the law-abiding won't be. There's that cliché again: "When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns." And these manufacturers don't report to the government. They sell to anyone with the necessary cash.

Gun manufacturing isn't rocket science. Pakistanis with hand tools and bench vises can build perfectly functional automatic weapons. Take a look at an M3 "Grease Gun" some time. Here's one disassembled so you can see just how simple it is.
Grease Gun

Stamped out in the thousands by GM's Guide Lamp division for WWII, it is simplicity itself. Each unit cost the U.S. government $20.94 in 1942, according to a recent issue of American Rifleman magazine. That's the equivalent today of $262.75, for a highly reliable, .45 caliber, fully-automatic weapon, at a profit. And I could build one in my garage today.

"Reducing gun availability" in an effort to "make us safer" is a pipe-dream, and always has been.

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