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Member since: Tue Jun 29, 2004, 06:38 PM
Number of posts: 27,270

Journal Archives

INTERNET FIREARM SALES: ATF Enforcement Efforts and Outcomes of GAO Covert Testing

As it turns out, it is not as easy to buy firearms illegally on the internet as the gun control advocates would have one believe.

eta: Or at least, private sellers are much more conscientious than gun control advocates claim about "internet sales".

What GAO Found
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) is responsible for investigating criminal and regulatory violations of firearms statutes and regulations that govern firearms transactions, including sales that are facilitated by the Internet. Two components of the Internet may be used to facilitate Internet firearm sales: the Surface Web and the Dark Web. The Surface Web is searchable with standard web search engines. The Dark Web contains content that has been intentionally concealed and requires specific computer software to gain access. ATF created the Internet Investigations Center (Center) to investigate buyers and sellers who use the Internet to facilitate illegal firearms transactions. The Center uses several tools to provide investigative support to ATF, which has resulted in the arrests of individuals using the Internet to facilitate illegal firearm purchases. ATF officials with the Center also noted that investigations might involve both the Surface Web and the Dark Web. For example, to identify an anonymous user on the Dark Web, the Center works to establish a user's “digital footprint” on the Surface Web.

In 2016, the Center also issued a report about Internet firearm transactions. This and other ATF reports highlighted the following about Internet-facilitated firearm transactions:
* The relative anonymity of the Internet makes it an ideal means for prohibited individuals to obtain illegal firearms.
* The more anonymity employed by a firearms purchaser, the greater the likelihood that the transaction violates federal law.
* Firearm transactions that occur on the Dark Web are more likely to be completed in person or via the mail or common carrier, versus through a Federal Firearm Licensee.

GAO agents attempted to purchase firearms from Dark Web and Surface Web marketplaces. Agents made seven attempts to purchase firearms on the Dark Web. In these attempts, agents did not disclose any information about whether they were prohibited from possessing a firearm. Of these seven attempts, two on a Dark Web marketplace were successful. Specifically, GAO agents purchased and received an AR-15 rifle and an Uzi that the seller said was modified so that it would fire automatically. GAO provided referral letters to applicable law-enforcement agencies for these purchases to inform any ongoing investigations.

Tests performed on the Surface Web demonstrated that private sellers GAO contacted on gun forums and other classified ads were unwilling to sell a firearm to an individual who appeared to be prohibited from possessing a firearm. Of the 72 attempts agents made to purchase firearms on the Surface Web, 56 sellers refused to complete a transaction: 29 sellers stated they would not ship a firearm and 27 refused after the disclosure of the undercover identities' stated prohibited status. Furthermore, in 5 of these 72 attempts, the accounts GAO set up were frozen by the websites, which prevented the agents from using the forums and attempting to make a purchase.

Link to full report: https://www.gao.gov/assets/690/688535.pdf

Tonight was a good night for those who want better health care coverage for all Americans

Senators Klobuchar and Sanders were great. They articulated why the ACA is the best current solution and needs to be supported. And Medicare for All was framed as a long term solution.

Christopher Cantwell, leader of Radical Agenda, and prominent in Vice's documentary...

...about the Charlottesville white supremacy riot is vile.

Stephen Colbert found him three years earlier -- pathetic and still interested in harassing people.

It's only 8 min long but it's enough.

eta: Someone else should post this as an OP because I think too many people have me on ignore.

Watching the eclipse with your smart phone.

So I live close to the zone of totality and eclipse glasses are sold out nearly everywhere.

Somone said to me that they plan on viewing the eclipsed sun via their smart phone.

I assume this would protect the eyes, but is that assumption, correct?

Also, would it damage the camera, screen, or other parts of the phone?

I feel like an idiot for asking, but I thought I should.

Vicente Fox (former President of Mexico) Savages the Donald

This is awesome. This may be the best comedy/social critique of Trump, yet.

It is primarily about the wall, but the zingers go way beyond.

I wish this weren't competing with Comey because every talk show would be playing it otherwise.

Oh. How I wish CNN would cut the mics of everyone not speaking

Or MSNBC. I would watch their channels more if they did.

Alyssa Milano Wants To Drive You To The Polls In Georgia


The actress Alyssa Milano is doing get-out-the-vote work for the Democrat fighting to take the suburban Atlanta congressional seat vacated by Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, she and her colleague Christopher Gorham tweeted on Monday.

The election is set for April 18, and early voting began Monday.

Turnout in special elections is typically low, meaning that a big run-up of early votes can make all the difference on Election Day. The election in April will winnow the field to two candidates, who will compete in a runoff in June ― unless, that is, one of the candidates can win at least 50 percent outright in the first round. Democrat Jon Ossoff is polling strongly; with enough miles on Milano’s ride, 50 percent is not inconceivable, and would be a devastating rejection of President Donald Trump deep in Republican territory.

“I think people are shocked and happy to see us at their doorstep, but I also think they understand how passionate we are about gaining this seat once we show up and ring the bell,” Milano, who has had roles in “Charmed,” “Who’s the Boss?” and “Melrose Place,” told HuffPost in an email.

Thank you, Alyssa.

I'm glad Pepperidge Farm named a tasty cookie after you.

Cincinnati: 1:00am Sunday, 15 people shot, 1 dead (initial report)


Fifteen people were shot -- one fatally -- at a Cincinnati nightclub early Sunday.

The shooting was reported just after 1 a.m. at Cameo Night Club on Kellogg Avenue in Linwood.

Officials said that one person was killed, and at least 14 others were injured. Some of the victims were taken to area hospitals via ambulance, and others arrived via their own conveyance, police said.

Assistant Police Chief Paul Neudigate said that several of the victims have life-threatening injuries.

Guinea Pigs eating Brussels Sprouts

I this place is more of a cat videos hangout, but I feel my bliss watching guinea pigs eating their vegies.

Rep. Buddy Carter's Town Hall in SAV GA 02-21-17

Buddy Carter is a new US Rep who inherited Jack Kingston's seat after Kingston's failed Senate run. He's a typical pandering south Georgia politician who blends conservatism with Christianity doctrine. The only good thing I can say about Buddy is that he showed up and held his Town Hall meetings. I was ashamed of almost everything he said.

Some of those things were:
His condemnation of ACA, saying it was collapsing
Not supporting Emergency Contraception saying it was abortion
Saying the Bible tells us to support our leaders
Saying he would still undo ACA even if his constituents wanted it
Saying no to single payer
EPA "bureaucrats" is out of control and needed to be reeled in.
Media is out control and needed to be reeled in
Give Trump a chance. Give Devos a chance.
and then running out the back door (new nickname Backdoor Buddy).

On the other hand, I was very proud of the crowd, mostly. Liberals outnumbered conservatives 10 to 1 and they let him know it.

At capacity in the auditorium (300 people!)
Courtesy of Savannah Connect

Overflow crowd was at least 250 people!
Courtesy of Savannah Connect

Here is a video from an attendee. The Town Hall starts 30 minutes into the video. The sound quality isn't great, but its all there.

Courtesy of the good folks at Starlandia Art Supply

Here is a good summary of the event.

THE long-anticipated town hall meeting of Rep. Buddy Carter, R-Savannah, lived up to the hype in terms of crowd intensity and size of the audience, which packed the Armstrong Center auditorium to capacity well before the scheduled 3 p.m. start time this Tuesday afternoon.

The overflow crowd in the lobby of the Armstrong Center of those either too late to secure a space inside or preferring to be able to hold larger signs – prohibited in the meeting – loudly chanted “This is what democracy looks like.”

But answers to most actual questions were short in coming, both due to Carter’s largely rote and platitude-heavy responses and the crowd’s own unruliness and frequent insistence on yelling over not only Carter, but other questioners in the crowd as they attempted to be heard on the frequently malfunctioning mic and PA system.

I'm proud of Savannah. Usually we just don't give a shit about anything except drinking.
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