PDA

View Full Version : The Slippery Slope


kyoung05
02-14-2009, 10:46 AM
Here is an article written by a UCLA Law Professor I found very interesting, both as it pertains to gun regulation (or confiscation, as the case may be) and to other legislation as well. There are 2 versions of this article, one is a longer (~55pg) Harvard Law Review article, the other is a shorter (3pg) magazine article. Pay close attention to the examples he uses regarding gun registration leading to gun confiscation. Not only do these make sense (to me), but you can definitely witness it happening right here in CA. Any thoughts? Comments?

Shorter Version
http://www.law.ucla.edu/volokh/slipperymag.pdf

Full-Length Version
http://www.law.ucla.edu/volokh/slipperyshorter.pdf

mtptwo
02-14-2009, 1:35 PM
Other than the SKS-D episode, when has registration led to confiscation here in California.

This is a serious question. Looking for examples of people having their registered guns confiscated by the state government.

N6ATF
02-14-2009, 1:57 PM
:xeno:

MP301
02-14-2009, 2:19 PM
This information is right on the money... I have only read the 3 page article so far, but will now have to read the whole report....I suggest everyone read this so you can see how this works....how we let our rights be chipped away...little by little...why the anti's are outmanuvering us....

excerpt -
People sometimes call this “desensitization,” or repeat
the parable of the boiling frog: A frog that’s dropped into boiling
water will jump out, but a frog that’s put into cold water which is gradually warmed supposedly won’t notice the temperature
change—and will get cooked. Likewise, people will let
their liberty be taken away slowly, though they would have
resisted the changes to their freedom had they been proposed
all at once.

This puts it in words that even the knuckle draggers can understand.... The only way to win back our gun rights is a little at a time.... Not with an all or nothing attitude! We can reverse this course if we keep things in perspective!

Tarn_Helm
02-14-2009, 3:29 PM
Other than the SKS-D episode, when has registration led to confiscation here in California.

This is a serious question. Looking for examples of people having their registered guns confiscated by the state government.

The question is irrelevant.

The relevant question is not "Has it happened?" but "How, in all likelihood, would it happen?"

The men who constructed our constitution and the Bill of Rights out of the raw material of 2,500 years of reflection on political philosophy and history had this to say in answer to question of how rights will be eroded:

“[W]e know that it is the nature of power to seek its own augmentation, and thus the loss of liberty is the necessary consequence of a loose or extravagant delegation of authority.”
~Founding Father Robert Whitehill, speaking at the Pennsylvania Ratifying Convention on November 28, 1787 http://press-pubs.uchicago.edu/founders/documents/v1ch14s29.html

"There are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations."
~James Madison (speech to the Virginia Ratifying Convention, 16 June 1788) Reference: Bartlett's Quotations (352)

“Experience hath shewn, that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.”
~Thomas Jefferson

“[A]ll experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms [of governmental abuses and usurpations] to which they are accustomed.”
~Declaration of Independence http://www.usconstitution.net/declar.html#Intro
courtesy of philosopher John Locke
http://history.wisc.edu/sommerville/367/Locke%20DecIndep.htm
via Thomas Jefferson

Too many people are naturally inclined to be "SHEEPLE!"

We should have "righted" ourselves regarding the Second Amendment a LONG time ago--the Second Amendment obviously means that no one needs a #$%^&%^! permit to carry a weapon for self-defense--any more than the First Amendment should be interpreted to mean that I need a permit to keep, bear, and use a pencil, pen, or laptop computer!

It is absolutely pathetic that it took a SCOTUS pronouncement to tell our "rulers (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7Nlq80DVpo)" that the Second Amendment means that someone can own a freakin' gun.
<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/q7Nlq80DVpo&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/q7Nlq80DVpo&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

And I throw in this one below because it represents the crowning touch of Enlightenment political thought:
“Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
~John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton, 1st Baron Acton, KCVO (10 January 1834 – 19 June 1902), commonly known as “Lord Acton” http://www.mondopolitico.com/library/lordacton/freedominantiquity/mpintro.htm

Meplat
02-14-2009, 4:03 PM
This is not new. We understood this when we were fighting the GCA-68. Trouble is we are not good at the game. The enemy owns the media. The enemy owns the schools. We need at least the threat of the all or we will get the nothing. Come back in forty years and let my know how incrementalism is working out for you. The best tactic we have stolen from the antis is using adjudication instead of legislation.

Exactly what segment of the RKBA community do you consider "knuckle draggers"?:eek:



This puts it in words that even the knuckle draggers can understand.... The only way to win back our gun rights is a little at a time.... Not with an all or nothing attitude! We can reverse this course if we keep things in perspective!

mtptwo
02-14-2009, 5:04 PM
The question is irrelevant.



It is relevant. If registration hasn't yet led to confiscation (over 10+ years we have been registering guns in California), it kind of makes a weak argument to say that it will lead to confiscation. I guess that's why the slippery slope is a fallacy.

Which brings up a good question of why is there a need to register guns (other than the obvious that it makes money for the state)?

Meplat
02-14-2009, 5:45 PM
I submit that the confiscated weapons that are un-registered should also be counted. After all it is the registration law that makes them vulnerable to confiscation.

I have a friend who likes black rifles. He is in the commercial real estate business and in the 80s & 90s was doing quite well. Well enough to indulge his hobby lavishly. Lots of details to this but I'll give the cliff notes version.

Friend is moving and has his Browning safe in the back of his truck and 30 odd rifles (almost all EBRs) and a dozen pistols in the extended cab portion of the truck. No ammo aboard anywhere. Pistols are on top in locked hard cases. Friend's brother is driving the truck. Friend is not along. Friend’s brother has ponytail and ear ring. Cops stop him and just about crap their sharply creased blue trousers! They figure they have got the west coast distributor for the Vietnamese mafia!

All but four of the weapons came back to friend. Two came back to his brother and one to me and one to my son. We hunted and shot together a lot, things get scrambled. Two of the EBRs he had never gotten around to registering. They were of course DROSed to him but never registered as assault rifles.

Result: 43,000 dollars later friends lawyer got it plead down to where he got off with time served (about 48hrs.) and A several thousand dollar fine. But could not avoid a felony record. He cannot have a gun.

The cops confiscated all the guns. The lawyer said that the ones belonging to his brother, myself, and my son could probably be recovered but at a cost many times their value, and only after probably years of stalling.

I lost a favorite hunting rifle, a Browning BAR in 300 Win. Mag I dearly loved. A real hard hitting soft kicking tack driver. My son lost a new Kahr-9 that was an inaccurate POS with a ****ty trigger, that he was looking, to sell. Friend’s brother lost a Mod-70 Win. And a black bolt Russian SKS.

So, yes, I'd say registration leads to confiscation.:43:



Other than the SKS-D episode, when has registration led to confiscation here in California.

This is a serious question. Looking for examples of people having their registered guns confiscated by the state government.

soopafly
02-14-2009, 5:51 PM
<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/q7Nlq80DVpo&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/q7Nlq80DVpo&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

"...take power and rule as president..."
WTF?!?!?! Isn't that what kings, czars and sultans do? Last I checked, the POTUS was none of those...

DDT
02-14-2009, 6:04 PM
"...take power and rule as president..."
WTF?!?!?! Isn't that what kings, czars and sultans do? Last I checked, the POTUS was none of those...

Guess you haven't checked in a while. (at least 4 months)

MP301
02-14-2009, 6:08 PM
This is not new. We understood this when we were fighting the GCA-68. Trouble is we are not good at the game. The enemy owns the media. The enemy owns the schools. We need at least the threat of the all or we will get the nothing. Come back in forty years and let my know how incrementalism is working out for you. The best tactic we have stolen from the antis is using adjudication instead of legislation.

Exactly what segment of the RKBA community do you consider "knuckle draggers"?:eek:


You are correct. We have not been good at the game and the Anti's have. And yes, they have more influence and control in the media and school system, no question about it...

Incrementalism....is
First one BS law...then another...then when that doesnt do what they claim it will do, then they say they need more...and more and its like the energizer bunny... it keeps going and going...

Dont ask me how incrementalism will work for me in 40 years, ask how well it has worked for the other side for the last 40 years!

What Calguns and the NRA and other folks are doing IS incrementalism. They are busting their butts to turn it around..one court case at a time.....little by little....step by step......and its starting to work I think! Dont you?

I dont know about you folks, but I want to win this "war" and if something is not working, (like pi**in and moaning about how I shouldnt have to do this or that cause its my right blah blah blah, I want to go in the garden and eat some worms...blah blah blah) then try something else....and keep trying something else until you try something that works....

And hey, dont worry, there is also room for armed resistance if they ever come after your guns, but im kinda thinkin that its a long way from that yet. And if its a long way from that, then armed resistance would only get them taken faster!

BTW, my definition of a knuckle dragger in this instance is someone who portrays the general image of gun owners in a negative light to the masses or general public. Some knuckle draggers dont know any better cause they are dumb. Some are smart and do k now better, but chose to act dumb anyway...

Example of a knuckle dragger - Some idiot that would show up to some public event dressed in Camo's and a t-shirt that says "kill them all, let god sort them out". A double knuckle dragger would then give a media interviewtell the interviewer that it was all or nothing and we should take back our rights by violence, etc etc...

It doesnt take a rocket scientist to understand that the more people we alienate, the more ground and support the anti's get.... Look at the threads regarding the Nordyke decision...and attending it...please wear a suit and tie, etc etc...There was a reason for this, yes?

vrand
02-14-2009, 6:13 PM
I submit that the confiscated weapons that are un-registered should also be counted. After all it is the registration law that makes them vulnerable to confiscation.



The time honored method of confiscation by tyrants.

Has been done with gold and guns in the past.

Meplat
02-14-2009, 6:20 PM
If you want to go down in history as a courageous and visionary president, you have to piss on the constitution.

Google FDR & the supreme court and, Lincoln & the supreme court and you will find these and much much more.:43:

http://www.lewrockwell.com/dilorenzo/dilorenzo75.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judiciary_Reorganization_Bill_of_1937



"...take power and rule as president..."
WTF?!?!?! Isn't that what kings, czars and sultans do? Last I checked, the POTUS was none of those...

Meplat
02-14-2009, 6:38 PM
Very good clarification!! Only one point to quibble with. I think the shooting war may be closer than you think. Not because of RKBA zealots but due to economic collapse. We have an empty suit marxist without a clue running the country at the most economically challenging time in our history. Buckle up!



You are correct. We have not been good at the game and the Anti's have. And yes, they have more influence and control in the media and school system, no question about it...

Incrementalism....is
First one BS law...then another...then when that doesnt do what they claim it will do, then they say they need more...and more and its like the energizer bunny... it keeps going and going...

Dont ask me how incrementalism will work for me in 40 years, ask how well it has worked for the other side for the last 40 years!

What Calguns and the NRA and other folks are doing IS incrementalism. They are busting their butts to turn it around..one court case at a time.....little by little....step by step......and its starting to work I think! Dont you?

I dont know about you folks, but I want to win this "war" and if something is not working, (like pi**in and moaning about how I shouldnt have to do this or that cause its my right blah blah blah, I want to go in the garden and eat some worms...blah blah blah) then try something else....and keep trying something else until you try something that works....

And hey, dont worry, there is also room for armed resistance if they ever come after your guns, but im kinda thinkin that its a long way from that yet. And if its a long way from that, then armed resistance would only get them taken faster!

BTW, my definition of a knuckle dragger in this instance is someone who portrays the general image of gun owners in a negative light to the masses or general public. Some knuckle draggers dont know any better cause they are dumb. Some are smart and do k now better, but chose to act dumb anyway...

Example of a knuckle dragger - Some idiot that would show up to some public event dressed in Camo's and a t-shirt that says "kill them all, let god sort them out". A double knuckle dragger would then give a media interviewtell the interviewer that it was all or nothing and we should take back our rights by violence, etc etc...

It doesnt take a rocket scientist to understand that the more people we alienate, the more ground and support the anti's get.... Look at the threads regarding the Nordyke decision...and attending it...please wear a suit and tie, etc etc...There was a reason for this, yes?

MP301
02-14-2009, 7:01 PM
Meplat,

As much as i would like to argue that point with you, (maybe im suffering from a little of that "it will never happen here" syndrome) im smart enough to know that you may be right. A lot of the indicators are apparent and like it or not, it is a real and valid possibility.

I have always maintained that however people actually think the president is limited on furthering new restrictive legislation, let some major event happen in the US and watch him or other anti's run with it!

So, whether we think its possible or not, lets just be prepared for whatever happens and we will have it covered!

7x57
02-14-2009, 7:47 PM
It is relevant. If registration hasn't yet led to confiscation (over 10+ years we have been registering guns in California), it kind of makes a weak argument to say that it will lead to confiscation. I guess that's why the slippery slope is a fallacy.


You are making another logical error, which can be stated as "if it hasn't happened it won't happen." You are also making a statistical error, which seems to be the motivating argument for the logical error: you assume that ten years is a long time compared to the expected timescale of the event, and therefore ten years with no confiscation is strong enough evidence to significantly change our estimates of future probability.

Both are drastically and demonstrably wrong. The timescale error is the more fundamental because it seems to cause the other, so let's talk about that. First, logically we expect the timescale to be at least a generations and likely a few generations, not a few years. Why? Because one of the primary ways registration lowers the cost of later confiscation is desensitization, and one way the population becomes desensitized is actuarial. The children born after the registration will grow up with it, and therefore regard it as far more normal and less odious than their parents. If the gun culture is strong enough to retain a knowledge of how intrusive the system is relative to the past, then it may take a few generations, each one more accustomed to the idea of government control than the last.

BTW, there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that desensitization is real. I moved here twenty years ago from Montana, and I am introspective enough to perceive the desensitization in myself. It is slower because I have become aware of it, but I absolutely do think differently now than I did in Montana. I *must* do this as a survival skill, because the laws are not only more complex they are more illogical and more punitive. That is why desensitization is so effective--it is a side effect of *necessary* survival knowledge and thus cannot be dodged without suffering other effects (equally pleasing to the antis).

So much for the sociological argument. There is another, which I was unaware of for a long time. Currently there are many guns outside the system, even handguns in California--guns possessed before the PPT law for example. Now, door-to-door confiscation isn't feasible in the US (one part of the Constitution seems to still work), so the best you can do is convince judges that being on a gun registration list is probable cause. That's very likely, in fact. But--you are going to miss an awful lot of guns, including many legal guns: guns possessed before the ban by someone who owns no registered guns, for example, or unregistered guns owned by an owner smart enough to "bury them deep" so they won't be found when the door is kicked in to get the registered ones (or more likely, he turns them in when ordered to so as to allay suspicions about his tendencies to hide other guns).

Now, confiscation when there are a lot of unregistered guns is not terribly effective; it will confirm the fears and, so to speak, "bury them deep." With a modicum of care guns are very durable machines; there are plenty of bolt-action guns that are now a century old which would be as suitable for fighting a war as they ever were (we don't do it not because they are any less suitable, but rather because we now can make rifles even more suitable). I can purchase Mosins five at a time for $65, and most are going to be as servicable as the Soviets ever asked them to be in the first place. So the reserve of unregistered guns will take a *long* time to dwindle as a few are found in searches for unrelated items, a few are reported by a family member or neighbor, and a few are turned in by inheritors who are not committed enough to keep them (stupid kids :-).

No, the effective way is to not confiscate until one has reason to believe that the vast majority are "in the system." That means being very nice about the registration for *generations*, as a similar set of effects to those mentioned above slowly bring unregistered guns into the registry. You need to be nice, to keep fears at a minimum.

Actually, you need to wait until a lot of people are saying just what you said. :chris:

Do I actually think it will take that long? No, but only because I don't think the antis are smart enough and disciplined enough. I believe if they have the opportunity to pass outright confiscation, too many of them will be too impatient, and they'll pass it while there are a great many guns outside the registry. That's slightly better than their optimal long-term strategy, but bad enough.

So much for logical arguments. We can also look at the countries most similar to us in language and legal system and see how the process worked there. I believe registration started in Britain in the 1920s or thereabouts, and the standard to be met in order to register a gun was simply raised gradually over the decades. So in that case, it took a very long time to implement a (near) total ban in what was originally a gun culture (one with a common ancestor to ours, in fact). The British pattern generally follows the expectations I just listed, and the slippery-slope pattern in general.

Finally, we even understand some mechanisms by which the slippery slope operates. Gun control has mostly been a one-way process, with very few measures being repealed once enacted (the rise of CCW is the main exception, I think--the Federal AW ban died not because it was repealed but because it expired, so it is an atypical case). NFA was not repealed, it was used as a stepping stone to a ban by closing the registry on select-fire weapons. That happened decades later, BTW, one more proof that your ten years of data does not indicate much.

But there is also a "social rachet," explained to me in the context of Canada. In a typical year, gun rights and gun control advocates will fight to a draw. Little will change. But infrequently, there will be a dramatic massacre, just as there is infrequently a dramatic plane crash. And because guns are effective, they will be chosen by mass murderers. Now at that point most of the public who thinks very little about guns has only one question: "how can we prevent this from recurring?"

That is the point where the gun banners offer a solution, and the point at which new laws are most easily passed. The point is that as this opportunity is infrequent, new gun laws tend to be infrequent and opportunistic. Thus, we expect it takes at least years, perhaps more to take another step down the slope.


Which brings up a good question of why is there a need to register guns (other than the obvious that it makes money for the state)?

As a set-up to confiscation. There was never any other reason, for the real true-believers. The reason that isn't more obvious is really a human failing: that psychologically ten years seems like a long time, and so people do not readily perceive long-term trends. But they need allies who aren't such true believers, and in the minds of many politicians the reason is increased control. They may not care if a ban comes later, but more control is always good for the state.

But the one-way nature of the increase of control means that sooner or later the ban will happen. It is a statistical certainty.

As for the slippery slope being a fallacy, it is only a fallacy if no mechanism or statistical evidence is present. In this case, both are present, and it is not a fallacy but rather a measurable (very crudely) effect.

7x57

Tarn_Helm
02-14-2009, 8:46 PM
You are making another logical error, which can be stated as "if it hasn't happened it won't happen." You are also making a statistical error, which seems to be the motivating argument for the logical error: you assume that ten years is a long time compared to the expected timescale of the event, and therefore ten years with no confiscation is strong enough evidence to significantly change our estimates of future probability.

Both are drastically and demonstrably wrong. The timescale error is the more fundamental because it seems to cause the other, so let's talk about that. First, logically we expect the timescale to be at least a generations and likely a few generations, not a few years. Why? Because one of the primary ways registration lowers the cost of later confiscation is desensitization, and one way the population becomes desensitized is actuarial. The children born after the registration will grow up with it, and therefore regard it as far more normal and less odious than their parents. If the gun culture is strong enough to retain a knowledge of how intrusive the system is relative to the past, then it may take a few generations, each one more accustomed to the idea of government control than the last.

BTW, there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that desensitization is real. I moved here twenty years ago from Montana, and I am introspective enough to perceive the desensitization in myself. It is slower because I have become aware of it, but I absolutely do think differently now than I did in Montana. I *must* do this as a survival skill, because the laws are not only more complex they are more illogical and more punitive. That is why desensitization is so effective--it is a side effect of *necessary* survival knowledge and thus cannot be dodged without suffering other effects (equally pleasing to the antis).

So much for the sociological argument. There is another, which I was unaware of for a long time. Currently there are many guns outside the system, even handguns in California--guns possessed before the PPT law for example. Now, door-to-door confiscation isn't feasible in the US (one part of the Constitution seems to still work), so the best you can do is convince judges that being on a gun registration list is probable cause. That's very likely, in fact. But--you are going to miss an awful lot of guns, including many legal guns: guns possessed before the ban by someone who owns no registered guns, for example, or unregistered guns owned by an owner smart enough to "bury them deep" so they won't be found when the door is kicked in to get the registered ones (or more likely, he turns them in when ordered to so as to allay suspicions about his tendencies to hide other guns).

Now, confiscation when there are a lot of unregistered guns is not terribly effective; it will confirm the fears and, so to speak, "bury them deep." With a modicum of care guns are very durable machines; there are plenty of bolt-action guns that are now a century old which would be as suitable for fighting a war as they ever were (we don't do it not because they are any less suitable, but rather because we now can make rifles even more suitable). I can purchase Mosins five at a time for $65, and most are going to be as servicable as the Soviets ever asked them to be in the first place. So the reserve of unregistered guns will take a *long* time to dwindle as a few are found in searches for unrelated items, a few are reported by a family member or neighbor, and a few are turned in by inheritors who are not committed enough to keep them (stupid kids :-).

No, the effective way is to not confiscate until one has reason to believe that the vast majority are "in the system." That means being very nice about the registration for *generations*, as a similar set of effects to those mentioned above slowly bring unregistered guns into the registry. You need to be nice, to keep fears at a minimum.

Actually, you need to wait until a lot of people are saying just what you said. :chris:

Do I actually think it will take that long? No, but only because I don't think the antis are smart enough and disciplined enough. I believe if they have the opportunity to pass outright confiscation, too many of them will be too impatient, and they'll pass it while there are a great many guns outside the registry. That's slightly better than their optimal long-term strategy, but bad enough.

So much for logical arguments. We can also look at the countries most similar to us in language and legal system and see how the process worked there. I believe registration started in Britain in the 1920s or thereabouts, and the standard to be met in order to register a gun was simply raised gradually over the decades. So in that case, it took a very long time to implement a (near) total ban in what was originally a gun culture (one with a common ancestor to ours, in fact). The British pattern generally follows the expectations I just listed, and the slippery-slope pattern in general.

Finally, we even understand some mechanisms by which the slippery slope operates. Gun control has mostly been a one-way process, with very few measures being repealed once enacted (the rise of CCW is the main exception, I think--the Federal AW ban died not because it was repealed but because it expired, so it is an atypical case). NFA was not repealed, it was used as a stepping stone to a ban by closing the registry on select-fire weapons. That happened decades later, BTW, one more proof that your ten years of data does not indicate much.

But there is also a "social rachet," explained to me in the context of Canada. In a typical year, gun rights and gun control advocates will fight to a draw. Little will change. But infrequently, there will be a dramatic massacre, just as there is infrequently a dramatic plane crash. And because guns are effective, they will be chosen by mass murderers. Now at that point most of the public who thinks very little about guns has only one question: "how can we prevent this from recurring?"

That is the point where the gun banners offer a solution, and the point at which new laws are most easily passed. The point is that as this opportunity is infrequent, new gun laws tend to be infrequent and opportunistic. Thus, we expect it takes at least years, perhaps more to take another step down the slope.

As a set-up to confiscation. There was never any other reason, for the real true-believers. The reason that isn't more obvious is really a human failing: that psychologically ten years seems like a long time, and so people do not readily perceive long-term trends. But they need allies who aren't such true believers, and in the minds of many politicians the reason is increased control. They may not care if a ban comes later, but more control is always good for the state.

But the one-way nature of the increase of control means that sooner or later the ban will happen. It is a statistical certainty.

As for the slippery slope being a fallacy, it is only a fallacy if no mechanism or statistical evidence is present. In this case, both are present, and it is not a fallacy but rather a measurable (very crudely) effect.

7x57
[emphasis added by me]
+1

Yeah.

I'm not sure who is typing this stuff--age, education level, familiarity with history, with law, with human nature, with the writings of the Framers of the U.S. Constitution, with the history of political philosophy in Western Civilization--but whoever it is sure comes off like he was born yesterday and has never read a book in his life.

I am certainly willing to be enlightened by him or her if s/he has anything worth saying other than the thin and historically unsubstantiated assertions made so far.

If you want to read how the socialist/incrementalist strategy is played out, then click here (http://www.cato.org/pubs/policy_report/v26n2/cpr-26n2-1.pdf).

:beatdeadhorse5:

tcrpe
02-14-2009, 10:49 PM
Other than the SKS-D episode, when has registration led to confiscation here in California.

This is a serious question. Looking for examples of people having their registered guns confiscated by the state government.

I'd say you've answered your own question, and also set out the procedure the state has in place.

What else would you need?

MP301
02-15-2009, 6:20 AM
You are making another logical error, which can be stated as "if it hasn't happened it won't happen." You are also making a statistical error, which seems to be the motivating argument for the logical error: you assume that ten years is a long time compared to the expected timescale of the event, and therefore ten years with no confiscation is strong enough evidence to significantly change our estimates of future probability.

Both are drastically and demonstrably wrong. The timescale error is the more fundamental because it seems to cause the other, so let's talk about that. First, logically we expect the timescale to be at least a generations and likely a few generations, not a few years. Why? Because one of the primary ways registration lowers the cost of later confiscation is desensitization, and one way the population becomes desensitized is actuarial. The children born after the registration will grow up with it, and therefore regard it as far more normal and less odious than their parents. If the gun culture is strong enough to retain a knowledge of how intrusive the system is relative to the past, then it may take a few generations, each one more accustomed to the idea of government control than the last.

BTW, there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that desensitization is real. I moved here twenty years ago from Montana, and I am introspective enough to perceive the desensitization in myself. It is slower because I have become aware of it, but I absolutely do think differently now than I did in Montana. I *must* do this as a survival skill, because the laws are not only more complex they are more illogical and more punitive. That is why desensitization is so effective--it is a side effect of *necessary* survival knowledge and thus cannot be dodged without suffering other effects (equally pleasing to the antis).

So much for the sociological argument. There is another, which I was unaware of for a long time. Currently there are many guns outside the system, even handguns in California--guns possessed before the PPT law for example. Now, door-to-door confiscation isn't feasible in the US (one part of the Constitution seems to still work), so the best you can do is convince judges that being on a gun registration list is probable cause. That's very likely, in fact. But--you are going to miss an awful lot of guns, including many legal guns: guns possessed before the ban by someone who owns no registered guns, for example, or unregistered guns owned by an owner smart enough to "bury them deep" so they won't be found when the door is kicked in to get the registered ones (or more likely, he turns them in when ordered to so as to allay suspicions about his tendencies to hide other guns).

Now, confiscation when there are a lot of unregistered guns is not terribly effective; it will confirm the fears and, so to speak, "bury them deep." With a modicum of care guns are very durable machines; there are plenty of bolt-action guns that are now a century old which would be as suitable for fighting a war as they ever were (we don't do it not because they are any less suitable, but rather because we now can make rifles even more suitable). I can purchase Mosins five at a time for $65, and most are going to be as servicable as the Soviets ever asked them to be in the first place. So the reserve of unregistered guns will take a *long* time to dwindle as a few are found in searches for unrelated items, a few are reported by a family member or neighbor, and a few are turned in by inheritors who are not committed enough to keep them (stupid kids :-).

No, the effective way is to not confiscate until one has reason to believe that the vast majority are "in the system." That means being very nice about the registration for *generations*, as a similar set of effects to those mentioned above slowly bring unregistered guns into the registry. You need to be nice, to keep fears at a minimum.

Actually, you need to wait until a lot of people are saying just what you said. :chris:

Do I actually think it will take that long? No, but only because I don't think the antis are smart enough and disciplined enough. I believe if they have the opportunity to pass outright confiscation, too many of them will be too impatient, and they'll pass it while there are a great many guns outside the registry. That's slightly better than their optimal long-term strategy, but bad enough.

So much for logical arguments. We can also look at the countries most similar to us in language and legal system and see how the process worked there. I believe registration started in Britain in the 1920s or thereabouts, and the standard to be met in order to register a gun was simply raised gradually over the decades. So in that case, it took a very long time to implement a (near) total ban in what was originally a gun culture (one with a common ancestor to ours, in fact). The British pattern generally follows the expectations I just listed, and the slippery-slope pattern in general.

Finally, we even understand some mechanisms by which the slippery slope operates. Gun control has mostly been a one-way process, with very few measures being repealed once enacted (the rise of CCW is the main exception, I think--the Federal AW ban died not because it was repealed but because it expired, so it is an atypical case). NFA was not repealed, it was used as a stepping stone to a ban by closing the registry on select-fire weapons. That happened decades later, BTW, one more proof that your ten years of data does not indicate much.

But there is also a "social rachet," explained to me in the context of Canada. In a typical year, gun rights and gun control advocates will fight to a draw. Little will change. But infrequently, there will be a dramatic massacre, just as there is infrequently a dramatic plane crash. And because guns are effective, they will be chosen by mass murderers. Now at that point most of the public who thinks very little about guns has only one question: "how can we prevent this from recurring?"

That is the point where the gun banners offer a solution, and the point at which new laws are most easily passed. The point is that as this opportunity is infrequent, new gun laws tend to be infrequent and opportunistic. Thus, we expect it takes at least years, perhaps more to take another step down the slope.



As a set-up to confiscation. There was never any other reason, for the real true-believers. The reason that isn't more obvious is really a human failing: that psychologically ten years seems like a long time, and so people do not readily perceive long-term trends. But they need allies who aren't such true believers, and in the minds of many politicians the reason is increased control. They may not care if a ban comes later, but more control is always good for the state.

But the one-way nature of the increase of control means that sooner or later the ban will happen. It is a statistical certainty.

As for the slippery slope being a fallacy, it is only a fallacy if no mechanism or statistical evidence is present. In this case, both are present, and it is not a fallacy but rather a measurable (very crudely) effect.

7x57

I have to say that this post should be very educational to those not up to speed... and very well communicated I must say.... Pay attention class!

Meplat
02-15-2009, 11:02 AM
I wonder if the antis realize that the percentage of unregistered guns in existence overwhelmingly dwarfs the number of registered weapons. It will take the passing of the baby boom generation and at least one more to turn that around. I don't think they have that kind of time.

Max-the-Silent
02-15-2009, 12:32 PM
It is relevant. If registration hasn't yet led to confiscation (over 10+ years we have been registering guns in California), it kind of makes a weak argument to say that it will lead to confiscation. I guess that's why the slippery slope is a fallacy.

Which brings up a good question of why is there a need to register guns (other than the obvious that it makes money for the state)?

There are national examples (England et al) to prove the hypothesis, and the fact that they "didn't happen here" means nothing.

Other than the previously mentioned SKS-D situation, there is an example in California you can point to, even if it isn't well known.

There is an ongoing DOJ/local agency program to identify individuals that have been convicted of crimes (or subject to a RO) that are now in the prohibited class -the names of these individuals are compared to the state database of registered firearms (handguns/AW's) and the operation targets these individuals if the registered firearms haven't been surrendered or otherwise transferred out of the prohibited persons name.

I agree with the premise, but the registration information is being used for probable cause, and the confiscation of registered firearms follows.

On the national front, you can point to the BATFE computerizing 4473's from out-of-business dealers, the "backwards trace" information used in Maryland during the "D.C. Sniper" case, the federal investigation into Makarov owners and FedOrd barrel purchasers after the murder of Tom Wales, Assistant United States Attorney in the Seattle U.S. Attorney's Office.

None of the above has lead to wholesale confiscation, but the fact remains that registration records can be used to go after individuals on a bureaucratic whim.