Wednesday Highlights

Good, well, whatever … day/night what have you.

  1. Dignity and value of human life ontological not a constituent property, e.g., you are “human” if you posses particular virtues and not if you don’t.  This is the central basis for anti-abortion ethics. If you resist that notion, read Ms Delsol’s book on those forgotten 20th century lessons.
  2. My daughter, now a senior, very much was saddened that “woods 3″ was dropped because of lack of interest at her school.
  3. Political squabbles.
  4. A book.
  5. Except that it’s not true. Watch “The Island”, asceticism is a virtue and don’t you forget it.
  6. Thick and thin thinking.
  7. The criminal set thanks you for identifying the vulnerable for future rapes, home invasions, and other mayhem.
  8. The real reason for not-disarmament. And another reason.
  9. Ms Biel was quite funny.
  10. And I’ll leave y’all in the mud.

11 responses to “Wednesday Highlights

  1. The criminal set thanks you for identifying the vulnerable for future rapes, home invasions, and other mayhem.

    Isn’t the gun rights line that a gun makes one less vulnerable to home invasions, rapes, etc. and that criminals will be deterred by the thought that there’s a higher chance their target might be armed?

  2. Boonton,
    Yes, and you’ve just given them a perfect way of identifying who is not armed.

  3. 1. Why would gun owners be the ones complaining then?

    2. It’s hardly a sure bet that lack of a dot indicating a gun permit means the house is unarmed.
    3. It is, of course, absurd to think most home invasions are done after a period of intense market reseaqrch scrubbing public records and news sites like this.

  4. Re #1, I don’t see any real connection to ‘abortion ethics’ other than the pro-lifers habit of self aggrandizement by simply declaring those who disagree with you are just like Nazis or Stalinists hence unworthy of seriously addressing.

  5. Boonton,
    Which is why I didn’t highlight that, instead brought to the fore the philosophical similarity, the danger to life and liberty inherent in ascribing personhood to properties not as intrinsic. The Unlearned Lessons (Ms Delsol’s little book) is (readable) book by a prominent French philospher. She points out the “Nazis and Stalinists” which you highlight arose from utopian and other thoughts by late 18th century political and moral philosophers (today we’d call them progressives) who sought to improve society. One of their philosophical similarities, crudely put, is that while an abortion supporter (or euthanasia supporter) identify personhood with intellectual capability is very similar with the Nazi/Stalinist who identified personhood with race/class.

    It is only unworthy of addressing if you read it shallowly.

  6. Boonton,
    Dunno. That was my point. They shouldn’t.

    It’s hardly a sure bet that lack of a dot indicating a gun permit means the house is unarmed.

    Just not legally armed.

    absurd to think most home invasions are done after a period of intense market reseaqrch scrubbing public records and news sites like this.

    Well, you have a point here. I remember (linking?) a report of a moron who tried holding up a gun store … the result being four or five customers opened fire on him, a fatal error on his part.

  7. Good grief, if it needs to be spelled out, then ok I’ll do it. There are several reasons why the publishing of gun owners was wrong, but two of them are

    1) Crooks who want to steal guns will know which houses to target. They stake the place out and wait until everyone is gone and then go in. Most safes are easy to bust open with a crowbar (youtube if you don’t believe me).
    2) Who are we kidding; the reason they published the map/list was an attempt to demonize gun owners. The liberals who published the map/list of gun owners did so because they’re trying to intimidate people into not owning/buying firearms.

    Thankfully they don’t have gun registration in the (so far) free state of Virginia, but if they did part of me would in fact say “good, now the damn liberals know I’m a gun owner and screw them if they don’t like it,” the most of me would be upset because of numbers 1 and 2 above. The newspaper deserved the bad publicity they got. Screw them.

  8. Tom,

    Who are we kidding; the reason they published the map/list was an attempt to demonize gun owners. The liberals who published the map/list of gun owners did so because they’re trying to intimidate people into not owning/buying firearms.

    I think it was simpler. That reason is better seen as those liberals who do not own guns as a shaming, thinking that there is some stigma or other which might be seen as owning up to being a gun owner. Other such lists include those like the public lists for sexual offenders which is, I think, what they would try to compare.

    Crooks who want to steal guns will know which houses to target.

    Quite possibly. Of the other things they might steal, of example, electronics and other valuables fence at a value far below market value. Not so with guns, perhaps.

  9. Actually the reason is journalism IMO. The map is interesting because it demonstrates even in a region with relatively high gun control, there’s a lot of gun owners. It’s also interesting because apparantly in an area with lots of gun control, many people not only still get guns but do so legally. That cuts against the pro and anti-gun control arguments IMO. Control doesn’t make guns scarce, also doesn’t mean the gov’t is confiscating everyone’s guns. Might be interesting to overlay the map with a map of violent crime by block.

    As for thiefs ‘who want to steal guns’ knowing where to find them, please. First of all most people who rob houses are not on a scavenger hunt. They hit a house and take whatever they can of value. If you’re going to rob houses, it makes more sense to rob stuff to sell and then buy a gun rather than try to get a gun directly from a home robbery. If anything the map would make someone less inclined to rob a house. Just because no one seems to be home doesn’t mean no one is. The gun may not be in a safe either.

    Kinda also leads to a question, why steal a gun? By definition they already are confident enough in their skills to rob houses without a gun. Since they are waiting for a house to be empty it also seems they have no taste for a confrontation.

    Of the other things they might steal, of example, electronics and other valuables fence at a value far below market value. Not so with guns, perhaps

    So what? Since the stuff that’s sold from a robbery is all profit what makes a gun so valuable to risk a special robbery just for it? A gun typically costs less than $1,000. A fist full of jewelry can easily pawn for that much and attract less attention.

    As for shaming; how effective can that be for a motive given the large numbers of dots on the map? This is unlike, say, a map of sex offenders.

    So public health issue: Keep in mind 55% of gun deaths are suicides and accidents. If you had a teen who suffered from depression or just a bit of acting out, how would you feel about having them sleep over at a house that had a gun? Would you trust that the neighbors to properly store the gun locked in a safe or might you worry that they may have gotten a bit lazy and are keeping the gun someplace unsecured?

  10. Boonton

    Actually the reason is journalism IMO.

    If this is journalism, how is it news. What journalistic purpose is served by allegedly outing gun owners?

    First of all most people who rob houses are not on a scavenger hunt

    Are you just making this up? Or do you some non-fictional basis for this statement? Fictional thieves in narratives have a large variety of reasons and take a wide range of care vs not-care in selecting their targets. Do you expect real life to be different with a far smaller set of operational expertise and care or not?

    As for shaming; how effective can that be for a motive given the large numbers of dots on the map? This is unlike, say, a map of sex offenders.

    Because in the eyes of the writers, I expect that they see gun ownership as problematic. A thing not to be celebrated.

    A gun typically costs less than $1,000. A fist full of jewelry can easily pawn for that much and attract less attention.

    “less attention”? From whom. You steal an iPod/phone or what not and get $10-20 for a order of magnitude markdown. You steal some jewlery and get even less, perhaps 2-3 cents on the dollar. Pick up a $500 semi-automatic pistol and get more than $500 in return. A good take for a 1-2 pound object. Value of the thief by weight is likely higher for guns than most what is found in a house … because it doesn’t lose orders of magnitude in value when fenced.

  11. If this is journalism, how is it news. What journalistic purpose is served by allegedly outing gun owners?

    I just told you, it illustrates how widespread legal gun ownership is in the area. This retures assumptions that gun ownership is concentrated just among niche communities such as the very rural areas. It also refutes assertions that gun control regimes are so onerous that it makes it impossible for law abiding citizens to own guns.

    Are you just making this up? Or do you some non-fictional basis for this statement? Fictional thieves in narratives have a large variety of reasons and take a wide range of care vs not-care in selecting their targets.

    It’s a pretty plausible hypothesis. You’re free to provide evidence to support the assertion that a non-trivial portion of robbers are seeking specific products from the homes they attack.

    Because in the eyes of the writers, I expect that they see gun ownership as problematic. A thing not to be celebrated.

    Irrelevant, the map is a fact that is being reported honestly. Whether you think it’s a merit or demerit to the community that so many have legal guns in it is for the reader to debate and decide.

    “less attention”? From whom. You steal an iPod/phone or what not and get $10-20 for a order of magnitude markdown. You steal some jewlery and get even less, perhaps 2-3 cents on the dollar. Pick up a $500 semi-automatic pistol and get more than $500 in return.

    You seem like you’re trying to make a rate of return here, but in a robbery it’s all return. You are correct that taking a gun probably will yield more than an ipad or laptop or single item of jewelry. You are forgetting, though, that unless you happen to know exactly where the gun is (which would require some intimate knowledge of the house beyond just reading the paper), the time required to locate the gun is likely to be much more than would be required to locate other valuables. As they say time is money and when robbing a house time can literally mean time in jail so one has the incentive to move quickly.

    Your error in computing the ‘profit per pound’ taken is this, $500-$1000 is not a lot of money to find in a home. The fact that a home might have a single gun in it alone does not merit a special attempt to target it IMO even if you assume for the sake of argument a very intelligent theif willing and able to extensively invest in such ‘market research’. Most homes have some amount of jewelry, electronics etc. Barring special knowledge the idea that gun owning houses would become special targets seems very strained to me. If anything knowledge that a house is highly likely to own a gun to me would probably deter more robbery attempts than provoke.

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