Monday, November 10, 2008

Guns? or Ammo?

I was asked to 'splain some commentary on guns and ammo--specifically, "who said" that there would be an ammo tax initiative from the Obama Administration.

Well, specifically, NOBODY said there would be an ammo tax initiative from the Obama administration.

But that does not mean that there will NOT be one. Moreover, an 'ammo tax' is far more likely than any other gun-control proposal, with one possible exception.


Let's start at the beginning. Obama, while in the Illinois legislature, was fanatically anti-gun. Among other things, Obama voted "no" on a legislative proposal which would allow Illinois residents to possess weapons for in-home defensive purposes ONLY. While in Milwaukee, following the NIU shootings, Obama endorsed "micro-tracing" of bullets, and he has called for "child-proofing" weapons (whatever that may mean.) He has also proposed legislation which would prevent firearms dealers from operating within a 5-mile radius of schools or parks--which would force the majority of FFL's to relocate or close up.


As of Friday afternoon (11/7/08), the Obama website announced the following initiatives:

--"Making the expired federal assault weapons ban permanent."

--"Repeal the Tiahrt Amendment."

--"Closing the gun show loophole."

--"Making guns in this country childproof."

And here is a screenshot of his website's (now-erased) overall gun policy.

So: where's the "ammo tax"? I'm getting there.


If Obama gets "micro-tracing" through, it will amount to an "ammo tax," because the expense of micro-engraving ammo will be serious. Not because it cannot be done--but rather, because the technology required will be very expensive to design, develop, refine, and purchase/utilize. There will be additional paperwork burdens, too, which will add to the expense at the manufacturer, wholesaler, and retailer levels. This is the "exception" I mentioned above.

It will be very difficult for him to get "child-proof" weapons through Congress, largely because it will be extremely difficult to write legislation which is enforceable and which will survive the 2A. The other proposals--the AWB, Tiahrt repeal, gun-shows--will likely get through.

But none of them will have a significant impact on the purchase and use of guns.


Recalling that Obama (and many Congressional Democrats) are rabidly anti-gun, and will not be satisfied with "non-impact" measures--after all, the idea is to make gun utilization and ownership as rare as possible--the most expedient path would be to increase the cost of owning a gun. After the purchase price, the single most significant cost of gun-ownership is ammo purchases. Since nobody would seriously consider gun-confiscation, and since it will be virtually impossible to prevent manufacture and sale of guns, the remedy will be to increase the cost of ownership.

Therefore, either Obama & Co. increase the cost of guns simple, by tax or regulatory cost (child-proofing is a wonderful landmine field) OR they increase the cost of ammo.

Easiest and fastest way: increase, substantially, the existing ammo-tax, which is used for preserving/maintaining hunting and wildlife areas (and for some other purposes.)

WILL it happen? Maybe.

Is it the easiest and fastest way to make gun-ownership difficult? Yes.

It is the easiest, the most "stealthy," and the most palatable to Congressional allies.

That's why many people think that it will happen. Did Obama SAY it would? No. But his track record, and that of the (D) leadership in Congress, is clear.

You've been warned.

A little more can be found here.


asianbadger said...

Time to stock up.

Disgruntled Car Salesman said...

I agree with AB 100%. To the gun shop!