Wednesday, February 13, 2013 • 12:44 PM Comments (6)

I say "Potato," you say "Pry it from my cold dead hands"

posted by James Heflin

Australia passed gun control measures in the wake of mass shootings there. The laws appear to have been quite effective in the years since: there have been zero mass shootings, and other indicators show that gun-related violence has decreased overall. The case for a connection between these things is quite strong. Of course, empiricism being empiricism, there's always room for questions about that. As well there should be. But questions are one thing, mangling another.

The Australian site The Conversation takes on the NRA's twisting of Australian crime statistics to try to prove the laws are in fact ineffective. Maybe it's because water swirls down the drain in the other direction down there (not true), therefore if it works in Australia, it would work in the opposite way here, see...

Perhaps the most blatant example:

The selective use of data, or cherry picking, is a commonly used method of extracting the “right” answer. This is true even when all the data tells a completely different story.

Cherry picking often exploits random fluctuations in data. Firearm deaths in Australia have declined over the past two decades, but from year-to-year one can see variations up and down. Bigger fractional fluctuations are likely if you shrink your sample size.

Leading US pro-gun lobby group, the National Rifle Association (NRA) was cherry picking when it’s publication, NRA News reported this statistic from New South Wales:

In the inner west, robberies committed with firearms skyrocketed more than 70% over the previous year, figures show.

Rather than giving the national trend over many years, the NRA chose one part, of one city, in one state and just two years of data. The NRA’s use of stats is misleading. Around Australia, robberies using firearms have declined from over 1500 per year in the 1990s to 1100 per year.

UPDATE: So there's that headline confirmed.

Comments (6)
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In other historical news, the United States remained independant after the Revolutionary War because of the fact that they were well armed. And the 2nd amendment was in place because our founding fathers were keenly aware that government has a tendency to grow and increase its power and that only a well armed populace can ensure the preservation of liberty.

Conceal carry areas are the safest areas. It now should be clear from our recent history that armed citizens are the best deterrent to mass shootings. Virtually every one has occurred in a "gun free zone." In the mean time you and Piers Morgan can keep outlawing mass shooter "preferred weapons" until they are eventually all banned.

I know you have personally submitted to our government and stated you are powerless to resist them with force. Most of us disagree.

Posted by k on 2.14.13 at 6:10

Ah yes... you and Piers Morgan.... anyone who believes in the 2nd amendment is stupid... doesn't care about kids.... and stubborn. Bully tactics. Just call me a bitter clinger I guess?

Meanwhile, the only proven deterrent to mass shootings is resistance from an armed individual.

Posted by k on 2.15.13 at 6:26

A good case for semi-automatic weapons. Additinally a good link to commnets by justice Scalia.

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=a89_1359762422

There's a bigger point here though. The case FOR the second amendment and FOR semi-automatic weapons has been made well and repeatedly (not necessarily by me... by others much smarter than me). It is YOU that has failed to make a compelling case that the 2nd amendment should be changed.... or... that your current gun control proposals DO NOT infringe on that amendment. You've failed to do so.

The idea of you and your ilk that the 2nd amendment is meant for only the most non-leathal means of weaponry is foolish at best and intellectually dishonest at worst. There is a level of parity needed to ensure we have a shot at defending ourselves from our own gov't.

In other news... the rogue former LA cop had the whole country on a manhunt for many days. Again... ONE - GUY. So Heflin... when are you going to admit that clinging to the idea that we are currently completely unable to resist gov't is foolish? Multiply that former LA cop by about 100million and we have no shot? I have to keep calling you on that because your argument completely falls apart without it.

Posted by k on 2.15.13 at 10:16

To which your response it to further disarm citizens? Again, please explain how that makes sense? It's like opting for no roof on your house because the one you had was leaking.

Posted by k on 2.15.13 at 14:35

Your argument still makes no sense. Good luck with your blogging when law & order breaks down due to natural/man-made distaster or imminent gov't tyranny.

Posted by k on 2.16.13 at 17:17

Strawman JH.

... we havge not reached the point where people have enough to lose to run outside with a rifle. As Obama, or as I like to call him George Bush junior, continues to decimate the bill or rights, we get closer and coser to that point. You have examples all around the mid east right now.

Posted by nobody on 2.23.13 at 17:26
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