October 20, 2019, 11:42:21 PM

Author Topic: Politics and other ailments of the real world  (Read 268902 times)

Offline ClintACK

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #165 on: December 01, 2015, 07:46:04 PM »
Back to the gun control issue Prof. Jaun Cole on firearm ownership and related murders in the USA.
Interesting numbers if correct but I make no supporting claims for accuracy. On the subject of alternate energy he has published what amounts to propaganda in the past.

http://www.juancole.com/2015/11/156549.html

Hard to take his numbers too seriously when the article includes the standard claim of increasing violence side-by-side with a plot that shows violent deaths decreasing 50% in the U.S. over the last forty years.  And when that chart specifically compares the U.S. to other developed countries with less violence by simply excluding the ones that are more violent.

Then there's the chart of "handgun mortality" -- with no reference to the fact that a large majority of those deaths are suicides.  (I'm not saying that suicide isn't bad -- just that gun control isn't a way to reduce suicidal depression.)  The text on either side of that chart obfuscates this fact -- talking about violent crime and firearm murder.  He even writes, "There is some correlation between high rates of gun ownership and high rates of violent crime in general, globally (and also if you compare state by state inside the US):" as the lead in to the chart. 

But here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_violence_in_the_United_States_by_state) are the state-by-state statistics.  The state with the lowest gun murder rate (Vermont) has 42% gun ownership.  The state with the highest gun murder rate (Louisiana) has 44% gun ownership.  Compare the gun murder rate statistics for the ten highest gun ownership states (0.6, 2.8, 0.8, 3.2, 4.0, 1.5, 1.0, 1.2, 2.7, and 0.9: avg 1.87, with >50% gun ownership) to those for the ten lowest gun ownership states (0.5, 2.8, 1.8, 1.5, 2.7, 2.7, 2.8, 3.4, 5.1, and 3.9: avg 2.72, with <25% gun ownership).  (all rates in the standard per 100k per year)  I wouldn't draw any conclusions from this without a lot more analysis -- but 2.72 isn't less than 1.87, and gun ownership is 2-4x higher in the high-ownership states I used.

And gun control can't explain the disparity of violence between the U.S. and the U.K.  The state with the lowest gun ownership -- Hawaii at 6.7% still has a murder rate twice that of the U.K.  The second lowest -- NJ at 12.8% -- has a murder rate four times that of the U.K.  Not one U.S. state has a murder rate lower than that of the U.K. despite a wide, wide range of policies on guns and violence.  (New Hampshire ties the U.K. with 1.0 violent murders per 100k per year.  New Hampshire has 30% gun ownership.)

TL;DR: Gun Control's a really contentious issue -- and a really complicated one.  Most of the statistics one would like in order to make an informed decision are completely unavailable.  No one knows how many lives are saved by the defensive use of guns, or even how often guns are used defensively -- estimates vary wildly (the reasonable ones range from 70k/year to 5M/year).  No one knows how many people who used guns to commit suicide would have found another method if guns were unavailable. Or how many premeditated murders of non-strangers would just switch methods.  Or even how much gun violence involves legally owned guns vs. ones that are already illegal.

In this vacuum, it's really easy to make assumptions that fit what we already believe.

Still TL; DR any of that: Yeah, Juan Cole is playing fast and loose with numbers and charts.  As he usually does.


Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #166 on: December 02, 2015, 06:24:47 PM »
Big answer.

In the UK legal Firearm ownership is now extremely rare and tenuous at best.
There are all sorts of reasons you can have your guns taken from you instantly including someone else knowing where the key to the cabinet is or that you are going through a divorce.
Nobody owns 'a' gun as the licence allows multiples and as you need a three gun cabinet and acquiring another gun is the cheap bit after the hoops you have to jump through. Statistics on ownership are usually skewed by the receiver being licensed and the weapon being licensed and suddenly ownership doubles or halves. Some air weapons require a full FAC here.

2.4% of murders in the UK were carried out with Firearms. I have no breakdown for illegal/legal
or antique weapons in these numbers. Which is pertinent in the UK.
It is legal to own a muzzle loading pistols and revolvers and used to be legal to own some obsolete calibre pistols, but I am not sure now if that is still the case A walker Colt is still as effective now as a 130 years ago.

You need a licenses for black powder both keep and acquire. Re-enactment involving firearms is a bureaucratic nightmare at best and untenable at worst.

Offline Hedin

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #167 on: December 02, 2015, 09:31:22 PM »
Meanwhile it looks like we had another mass shooting today in California.

I find this paragraph pretty damning against guns:

Quote
In 2010, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, 67% of all homicides in the U.S. were conducted using a firearm.[7] According to the FBI, in 2012, there were 8,855 total firearm-related homicides in the US, with 6,371 of those attributed to handguns.[8] 61% of all gun-related deaths in the U.S. are suicides.[9] In 2010, there were 19,392 firearm-related suicides, and 11,078 firearm-related homicides in the U.S.[10] In 2010, 358 murders were reported involving a rifle while 6,009 were reported involving a handgun; another 1,939 were reported with an unspecified type of firearm.[11]


Usual Wikipedia information gathering caveats apply (I haven't had time to check all of the references) but those numbers are pretty damning.  I'm not going to say that if we get rid of guns that all of those suicides and homicides wouldn't still happen but I would bet a significant amount of money they would be greatly reduced. 

Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #168 on: December 02, 2015, 09:34:23 PM »
Ach bad timing on nmy part not checked the news yet

Offline ultamentkiller

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #169 on: December 02, 2015, 09:37:06 PM »
Just heard about this five minutes ago before I read this.
I think at first the rate of murders would decrease, but we're the human race. We adapt quickly. Give it a few months and we would go back to brutally stabbing and beating each other.

Offline Mr.J

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #170 on: December 02, 2015, 09:45:13 PM »
Humans will always do awful, terrible things, we know this.

But this is not humans, this is America, this is happening on regular occasions. It is the only place where it regularly happens, and I cannot believe there is even a debate frankly for even 'some' form of control, any little bit of regulation will do. The mind fucking boggles.

"We have a pattern now of mass shootings in this country that has no parallel anywhere else in the world" - Obama, if the president himself acknowledges this and can do shit all about it, good luck.


Offline ultamentkiller

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #171 on: December 02, 2015, 09:59:38 PM »
Humans will always do awful, terrible things, we know this.

But this is not humans, this is America, this is happening on regular occasions. It is the only place where it regularly happens, and I cannot believe there is even a debate frankly for even 'some' form of control, any little bit of regulation will do. The mind fucking boggles.

"We have a pattern now of mass shootings in this country that has no parallel anywhere else in the world" - Obama, if the president himself acknowledges this and can do shit all about it, good luck.
I won't claim to be an expert on any of this, but just a couple things.
First, "This is not humans, this is America," cracked me up.
As far as the only country where mass shootings happen on a regular basis, I don't agree with that. We hear about it in America because that's where we live. All I hear from other countries are shootings that involve some form of terrorism. And, no offense to anyone, but other countries don't like us. They love our culture, but take the chance to put us down at any moment. You're not going to hear one of their politicians or officials stand up and announce to the world, "I am sad to admit that we have lots more shootings here than America does." They would never say that.
Mainly though, I would just look at the post at the top of this page. There's some good information in there that I feel doesn't get brought up enough.
Also, the country isn't supposed to be run by the President. Too often we blame issues on whoever's in office, or exaggerate their power. It's Congress who has all the power. Or is supposed to. Could Obama sign an executive order? He's done it before, so maybe he can get away with another one. And Congress has no way to stop it. But other than that, all he can do is veto any bills that come out, and command the military once we're at war.
In reality, if us Americans would focus less on the Presidential race and more on who we elect into Congress, more stuff might get done. But for the most part, we just vote for whoever represents the party we think we fit into best.

Offline Hedin

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #172 on: December 02, 2015, 11:32:24 PM »
I agree that Congressional elections are probably more important than Presidential elections.   That said, your local elections are probably the most important as far as your day-to-day life is concerned and holy crap do we elect a lot of idiots from both sides locally.

Offline m3mnoch

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #173 on: December 03, 2015, 12:00:27 AM »
personally, i think it's hilarious that congress has a 14% approval rating, but "my local congressman" has a 60% approval rating.

it's those *other* guys who are messing everything up.

Offline night_wrtr

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #174 on: December 03, 2015, 12:12:31 AM »
Watching this on the news right now. They have a car surrounded and shot all to hell. Apparently a suspect still armed inside.

Offline m3mnoch

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #175 on: December 03, 2015, 12:16:58 AM »
where's cobra when we need him?


Offline night_wrtr

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #176 on: December 03, 2015, 12:19:02 AM »
where's cobra when we need him?



Man, I wanted his car so bad when I was a kid.

Offline m3mnoch

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #177 on: December 03, 2015, 03:19:02 AM »
Man, I wanted his car so bad when I was a kid.

right?  i chewed on a matchstick forever after watching that.

Offline xiagan

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Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #179 on: December 03, 2015, 02:54:08 PM »
In the first  link. The rage at the Daily news headline is so scary. To my reading people who could make real change offer thoughts and prayers instead of action to the berieved while continuing to pocket gun lobby money and most of the commentaters are incenced and spouting off about it being anti christian?
In a secular state it would be deemed an attack on hypocracy.

Elsewhere in the post it's mentioned that 6% of terrorist attacks are carried out by muslims.
Numbers look wrong but I am presuming the other 94% are your christian fundementalists and neo nazis?
These incidents are not sensationalised on international news sites.

For comparrison

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/brit-jailed-keeping-secret-stash-weapons-bedroom-article-1.2453688