Note that the places Al Queda has discussed attacking in the US are places where few permitted concealed handguns are allowed

From Yahoo News:
Al Qaeda militants in Syria are plotting attacks to inflict mass casualties in the West, possibly against transport systems or "iconic targets", the head of Britain's MI5 Security Service said on Thursday.Speaking after gunmen killed 12 people in an assault on a French satirical newspaper, MI5 boss Andrew Parker warned a strike on the United Kingdom was highly likely. . . .
From the Daily Beast:
In the Spring 2014 issue, for example, Inspire proposed attacking cities and military facilities in northern Virginia, the site of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, and targets in Los Angeles and Chicago. . . .
 In Los Angeles, there are only about 240 concealed handgun permits in an adult population of about 8 million people.  In Chicago, it costs about $500 to go through the process of getting a concealed handgun permit.



Newest piece in Investors' Business Daily: "Do Blacks Really Feel Especially Distrustful Of Cops?"

My newest piece in Investors' Business Daily starts this way:
With chants of "NYPD, KKK" and signs saying "Stop Racist Police Terror" up until days before Christmas, protesters in New York made it clear that they don't trust the police.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's second inaugural address was blunt: 
"The truth is the justice system does need review. The truth is there are troubling questions that have been raised which must be answered." 
But despite the overwhelming political and media rhetoric and the polls, there is strong evidence that blacks trust police at least as much as whites do. 
If you looked only at recent polls by Gallup and Pew, there is no question: blacks clearly don't trust police. 
Blacks were asked to explain why black males go to prison so much. Compared to other Americans, blacks were 29% more likely to say it was more a matter of racial discrimination than it was about the disproportionate number of crimes committed by black males. Blacks are much more likely to say that police treat blacks less fairly than whites. Blacks are also more likely to believe that the police are dishonest. 
The media have also bombarded people with "evidence" that blacks are discriminated against. Take the widely reported false claim that black men between the ages of 15 and 19 are 21 times as likely as whites to be killed by a police officer. Few note that these numbers are based on just 1.2% of police departments and that the ones that do report represent very heavily black urban areas. 
Politicians have supported these fears. After the Ferguson grand jury verdict, President Obama emphasized that the anger about the verdict was "an understandable reaction" and blacks' distrust of police is "rooted in realities." 
But what people say and what they do are often very different. 
A great many blacks say that Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown were innocent and unarmed. But that doesn't mean that they act like that they all believe it. . . .

The rest of the piece is available here.

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Bloomberg's gun control groups explain their strategy: focus on the states

Gun control advocates are going for a state by state approach, following along what homosexual rights groups have done.  The left wing Salon had this interview with Bloomberg's Shannon Watts:
. . . If you look at what we’ve done in the states alone — in 2013, we helped close the background check loophole in several states (Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New York) … and then we built on that this year. We got six different states, red and blue, to pass laws that would keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers. And those were signed by [governors] from both parties … And then we went to Washington State where our moms were a huge part of the success of getting I-594 passed with 60 percent of the vote … And this is something we can take to two-dozen other states … to get [similar] initiatives passed there … We passed a critical gun-violence restraining bill in California, which is a prototype that we can take to other states … 
We have had huge success with our corporate campaigns. We decided that this was very much a cultural issue, so we took this issue to companies and said, You need to have policies around guns just like you do [for] attire, outside food, smoking, etc. And just in the last year we’ve gotten Target, Chipotle, Starbucks, Sonic, Jack in the Box, Chili’s — we’ve gotten all these major retailers and restaurants to say, We don’t want open-carry in our stores (in fact, some of them have said they don’t want any guns in their stores). 
If you look at how the acceptance of gay marriage came to be in this country, it was just like this; this is pretty much the playbook. You bypass Congress, you go straight to companies, you go straight to the state legislatures, you build a huge amount of momentum, you educate voters about this issue, and when they go out to the polls in 2016, hopefully you get a Congress in place that’s going to do the right thing. Maybe they’ll do the right thing before that, but we’re not going to rest on our laurels. . . .
The errors in this are quite numerous.  None of the states that they point to are "red" states.  An analysis of the 594 initiative is available here.  An analysis of the California restraining order is available here.

The claims in the second paragraph about the success in their corporate campaign are simply false (see herehere, and here.

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The subsidy for students going to state colleges keeps going up and up

Click on figure to enlarge it.

A lot is being made about the fact that students at public universities are covering a greater percentage of the costs of their education.  But students still only cover 25% of costs. The Washington Post makes a big deal about the fact that the share of state funded university expenditures that the students cover is more than that covered by states? 

The problem is that people are only covering a tiny fraction of the cost of their education. Going from 17% to 25% of costs is an improvement, but the absolute size of the subsidy has increased. Why should we be increasing the absolute size of the subsidy for the future wealthy (those who graduate from college will earn above average incomes)? All state college expenditures would have to go up by only 11 percent from 2003 to 2012 for the absolute subsidy to have gone up. In fact, inflation went up by 25% over that time. If that was how much state college costs went up (we can dream that they only went up that much), the total subsidy increased 13% faster than what students paid.

I haven't taken the time to look it up, but clearly university expenditures have gone up by much more than inflation over that period of time.

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New York State claims that insomnia is sufficient mental illness for retired cop to have his guns taken away

A decorated retired New York cop is suing the state for taking away his guns.  From Fox News:
. . . Donald Montgomery’s lawsuit contends that Gov. Andrew Cuomo and other state officials violated his Second Amendment rights when his guns were seized after a brief hospital stay for insomnia. Montgomery, a cop for 30 years and a U.S. Navy veteran, brought the lawsuit in Rochester Federal Court on Dec. 17, according to the Daily Caller
The SAFE Act became law with little public debate after Cuomo convinced lawmakers that New York needed to do something after the mass shooting at the Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Conn. 
Montgomery was the owner of four guns -- a Colt .38 handgun, a Derringer .38, a Glock 26 9-mm. and a Smith & Wesson Bodyguard 380. 
His troubles started when he visited a Long Island hospital in May complaining of insomnia. He was discharged with a diagnosis of “depression, insomnia” and then returned a short time later for a 48-hour stay. The lawsuit says that during that visit, staff erroneously listed him as an “involuntary admission,” triggering the SAFE Act reporting provision. Those deemed at-risk for owning guns by mental health professionals have to be reported and their names entered into a database. 
The lawsuit claims Montgomery should not have been reported because he was not a threat to himself or others. The suit says a hospital psychiatrist told him “You don’t belong here” and “I don’t know why you were referred here.” . . .

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Homeowner shots to death home invader, defends pregnant fiancé

This might not have gone as smoothly as one would want, but against two robbers it isn't clear what other option this many had.  From TheIndyChannel ABC Channel 6:
. . . IMPD [Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department] officers were called to a residence on the 3100 block of East 10th Street at 10:23 p.m. Sunday on a report of shots fired. 
The caller reportedly told police they had shot someone who attempted to rob them.
Officers arrived on scene to find an unidentified male with apparent gunshot wounds.
Homicide detectives said the suspect forced his way into the victim's apartment, pulled his gun and disarmed the would-be victim. But the victim and his pregnant fiancé wrestled the gun back and shot the suspect. 
The suspect, identified as Dequan Cummings, of Indianapolis, was pronounced dead at the scene. . . . 
Meanwhile, police are looking for second robbery suspect. Because of the death of the other suspect, the second suspect will face felony murder charges when captured, RTV6's Jack Rinehart reported. . . .