Posts Tagged ‘Guns’

Deep State Damage: Maria Butina Brings Down Overstock CEO

August 23, 2019

Deep State Damage: Maria Butina Brings Down Overstock CEO

After babbling about the “Deep State” and “Men In Black” last week, Overstock. com CEO Patrick Byrne admitted to a 3-year affair with jailed Russian agent Maria Butina and resigned. The company’s depressed stock price rose 15 percent in response.

More:

“Patrick Byrne’s Overstock Exit Came After Admission He Romanced Russian,” Jeran Wittenstein, Bloomberg

“Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne resigns after saying he aided in ‘deep state’ Russia investigation,” Abha Bhattarai, Washington Post

“Overstock investors cheer after ‘too controversial’ CEO Patrick Byrne resigns,” Tomi Kilgore, MarketWatch

“Overstock CEO Resigns to Focus on Career as Deep State Intelligence Asset, One Assumes,”
Bryan Menegus, Gizmodo

“Overstock Ex-CEO’s Bonkers Rant to Fox Business: I’m Part of ‘Deep State,’” Justin Baragona, Daily Beast

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Top image (“Maria ‘Natasha Fatale’ Butina, Overstocked, after Jay Ward and Alex Anderson“) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Doctors are taking on the NRA

August 7, 2019

American Trauma: How the NRA Sparked a Medical Rebellion, an Atlantic video.

“’I see more gunshot wounds as a trauma surgeon here in the United States per week than I did when I was serving in Kandahar, Afghanistan,’ says Dr. Mallory Williams, chief of the Division of Trauma and Critical Care at Howard University Hospital. ‘There’s no question about it.’”

Related:

“I’m a Trauma Surgeon and a Shooting Victim. I Have Every Right to Speak Out on Gun Violence.” Joseph Sakran, The Atlantic

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Gilroy. El Paso. Dayton. How many more?

August 5, 2019

Gilroy. El Paso. Dayton. How many more

On Sunday morning, Dayton, Ohio suffered the 251st U.S. mass shooting this year. 9 people were killed and 27 injured. The day before, in a shooting at an El Paso shopping mall, 20 people were killed and 26 injured. The preceding Monday, in Gilroy California, a gunman killed 3 people and injured 15. 3 gunmen perpetrated 32 gunshot homicides and 68 gunshot casualties in one week.

Three people were able to commit that human carnage because they used variants of assault rifles designed for the battlefield and equipped with high-capacity magazines. The gun industry has cynically re-branded these military-style firearms as “modern sporting rifles,” though they are designed to tumble when they hit a target and would shred game animals and blast 6-inch exit holes. That’s what happened to this week’s victims. It’s true that most of America’s yearly 40,000 gunshot fatalities are committed with handguns, but you don’t have mass shootings without weapons capable of mass shootings. Reinstituting the assault weapons ban is a good place to start.

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Maria Butina Sentenced to Prison

April 26, 2019

Maria Butina Sentenced to Prison

On  Friday, Federal Judge Tanya Chutkan sentenced admitted Russian spy Maria Butina to 18 months in prison. “I am deeply embarrassed,” said Ms. Butina.

The former American University grad student pleaded guilty in December to conspiracy against the United States, acting as an unregistered agent of the Russian Federation, and seeking to influence U.S. conservative politicians through the National Rifle Association.It’s a salacious spy story of sex, guns, money, and the National Prayer Breakfast, and it’s packed with oligarchsRepublicanslobbyistsTreasury officials and Kremlin connections, a saga spanning the globe from Siberia to South Dakota. Her older American lover, Paul Erickson, a GOP fundraiser and NRA supporter, is charged with fraud and money laundering in a separate case.

Ms. Butina, deemed a flight risk, has been imprisoned since her indictment in July. We hope she will be able to continue with her Tai Chi in prison.

More:

“Maria Butina, Russian who conspired to infiltrate conservative U.S. political groups, sentenced to 18 months,” Spencer S. Hsu and Rosalind S. Helderman, Washington Post

“Russian Agent Maria Butina Sentenced to 18 Months in Prison: ‘I Destroyed My Own Life,’” Betsy Woodruff, Daily Beast

“Maria Butina is not a Russian spy, but a ‘spotter’: DOJ revives intrigue over gun rights activist,” Kristine Phillips, USA Today

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Short link: https://wp.me/p6sb6-t6v

Top image (“Maria ‘Natasha Fatale’ Butina, after Jay Ward and Alex Anderson“) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Florida (of course): Give Teachers Guns

January 9, 2019

Florida (of course): Give Teachers Guns

Florida’s “Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission,” largely composed of Sunshine State political hacks, submitted a report urging the arming of public school teachers. What could possibly go wrong?

More:

“Parkland safety commission’s solution to prevent school shootings? More guns in schools.” Tess Owen, VICE News

“Parkland commission recommends teachers be allowed to carry guns,”Jamiles Lartey, The Guardian

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Top image (“School Supplies”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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GOP: How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?

December 19, 2018

GOP: How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?

Former American University grad student Maria Butina pleaded guilty last week to conspiracy against the United States, acting as an unregistered agent of the Russian Federation, and seeking to influence U.S. conservative politicians through the National Rifle Association. It’s a salacious spy story of sex, guns, money, and the National Prayer Breakfast, and it’s packed with oligarchs, Republicans, lobbyists, Treasury officials and Kremlin connections, a saga spanning the globe from Siberia to South Dakota.

Ms. Butina, deemed a flight risk, has been imprisoned since her indictment in July. We hope she’s been able to continue with her Tai Chi in jail. There are indications she will be testifying before a federal grand jury sometime soon.

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Short link: https://wp.me/p6sb6-rVM

Top image (“Maria ‘Natasha Fatale’ Butina, after Jay Ward and Alex Anderson“) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

American Ritual

June 21, 2018

“A Unique American Ritual: The School Shooting,” a short video from the New York Times.

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Doctors Write Rx to Prevent Gun Deaths

June 13, 2018

Doctors Write Rx to Prevent Gun Deaths

On Tuesday the American Medical Association addressed a persistent and deadly U.S. public health menace, and officially endorsed firearms safety measures, including:

  • Minimum age requirement of 21 to own or buy guns and ammo
  • Licensing and safety course requirements for gun owners
  • Registration requirements for all firearms
  • Closing loopholes allowing people with history of domestic abuse and stalking to buy or own guns
  • Allow courts, upon a relative’s request, to remove guns from homes in which a person is imminently violent or suicidal
  • Better training of doctors on screening suicide risk

This is an attempt by physicians to stem a growing public health danger:

“AMA members cited U.S. government data showing almost 40,000 deaths by gun in 2016, including suicides, and nearly 111,000 gun injuries. Both have been rising in recent years.

By comparison, U.S. deaths from diabetes in 2016 totaled almost 80,000; Alzheimer’s, 111,000; and lung disease, 155,000. The leaders are heart disease, with 634,000 deaths in 2016, and cancer, about 600,000.”

— “Frustrated AMA adopts sweeping policies to cut gun violence,” Lindsey Tanner, AP via Chicago Tribune

More:

“The country’s largest doctor group just took its most aggressive stance on gun control yet,” German Lopez, Vox

Related:

“Congressional staffers are learning how to treat gunshot wounds,” Summer Meza, The Week

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Short link: https://wp.me/p6sb6-rND

Image (“Old Glory”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Mexico’s Murderers: ¡Gracias, NRA!

May 29, 2018

Mexico's Murderers: ¡Gracias, NRA!

There’s only one gun store in all of Mexico, and it’s on an army base. But the southern border region of the US bristles with gun shops.

“… like so many aspects of life in Mexico, the influence of its powerful neighbor to the north is keenly felt: Each day the army gun store sells on average just 38 firearms to civilians, while an estimated 580 weapons are smuggled into Mexico from the United States.

That paradox is increasingly relevant given Mexico’s unprecedented levels of gun violence, which have claimed more than 100,000 lives over the last decade. Last year was Mexico’s deadliest since the government began releasing homicide statistics in 1997. This year, it is on track to surpass that record.”

— “There is only one gun store in all of Mexico. So why is gun violence soaring?” Kate Linthicum, Los Angeles Times

What can be done? For a start, the U.S. can finally ratify the The Inter-American Convention Against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives, and Other Related Materials (CIFTA)The National Rifle Association has thrown money around and stalled this for a dozen years, at the cost of thousands of lives.

You think life is cheap in Mexico? So are congressmen here in the USA — you can buy them for the cost of a few assault rifles.

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More Than a Single March

March 24, 2018

Gun violence marches this weekend span the entire country, and over 800 places around the world.

What can be done? The Parkland students have some ideas.

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