Enshrining the Impossible into Law

Most people know by now that California is a giant, open-air asylum run by the most deranged of the inmates, so this story shouldn’t come as much of a surprise.  For background, California passed a law requiring handgun manufacturers to get each weapon to stamp identifying information on bullet casings when shots are fired to make it easier to solve crimes. Now this may sound sensible on the face of it, were it not for the fact that the technology to do this doesn’t exist. However, when gun rights advocates challenged the law on this basis they didn’t reckon on the insanity of the judges:

Writing for six of the justices, Associate Justice Goodwin Liu said impossibility can sometimes lead courts to excuse a failure to comply with a law, but it can’t be the basis for invalidating it.

Yes, that’s right: a law being impossible to comply with does not make it invalid. The ghost of Joseph Stalin is currently kicking himself for not thinking of that one. So if California’s benighted rulers decide to outlaw gravity, residents arrested for remaining stubbornly attached to the ground may only plead for clemency in sentencing; arguments that humans cannot fly and gravity is real will fall on deaf ears.

What this is, of course, is an attempt to circumvent the 2nd Amendment by making it impossible for gun manufacturers to produce weapons that are legally compliant. It’s rather cunning if you think about it, sort of like saying people are free to own a car but only one that uses no fuel and emits no form of pollution. I suspect this attempt will fail, but it’s a warning to the rest of America – and everyone else – of the mindset of the ruling classes.

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19 thoughts on “Enshrining the Impossible into Law

  1. Given that this is a California court, you can guarantee that they made this argument in the interests of a desired policy outcome, and would have ruled the opposite had the case been brought on another topic by a progressive group.

    If this gets to SCOTUS, expect a split with Kagan and Sotomayor at least arguing in a similar manner.

  2. Playing devil’s advocate here.
    You’d think courts couldn’t change how people think, and so people act hypocritically as if they believed.
    But the mind hates an internal conflict. e.g. race discrimination laws (obeyed as to actions, not as to thought) morph gently into a belief in race equality.
    Other examples would be religious changes (settled by the ruler, not the people, see Edward VI / Mary Tudor, and others) and then religious tolerance decrees.
    So maybe the California law will make a difference.

    The court held that marking gun casings will soon be technically easy (bar codes?) and so are merely giving the industry a hurry up.

    Whether this will have any effect on homicide rates is moot, since most killings are done with stolen / unlicensed arms. Expect also some home brew casing collectors as bolt ons to the gun.
    Which makes Tim right: it’s just virtue signalling. As if the lobby they are rooting for is Nevada gun shops.

  3. California needs to be closed down and its leftists set to clean the human shite off its streets. Literally in the case of San Francisco and metaphorically for the rest. As in Cali-leftists vs Gangs. There are far more leftists than gang members but since one gang banger probably has the fighting power of 100 leftists then it should come out even with state free of both sources of trouble by the time it is over.

  4. The court held that marking gun casings will soon be technically easy (bar codes?) and so are merely giving the industry a hurry up.

    Please explain how the gun itself applies a barcode to each casing. That’s essentially what they want, although the idea is to have some kind of microstructure in the chamber or breech face that will leave a unique and identifiable mark on the case. However, it’s not possible for the foreseeable future in a way that would work, would survive wear over time, etc.

  5. Very clever. I actually tip my hat to its mendacious intent and deployment due to its genius.

    Anyone got any statistics on how many shootings and homicides were committed in California each year by non-registered and legally owned guns?

  6. I mean, if this law had been some unattainable THC purity and isotope-based tracability in medical marijuana you can be sure the ruling would have been the opposite.

  7. Ballistic fingerprinting or microstamping (they are both the same concept and are used interchangeably) has been bandied about as the greatest thing since sliced bread for a while. Much like hydrogen fusion producing boundless cheap, clean, non polluting energy any day now, the actual practical and technical difficulties make it a non starter.

    Kevin baker who has a blog, The Smallest Minority, comprehensively demolished the concept way back in 2005 – so the idea has been kicking around since at least then, certainly a lot longer to allow Kevin to research the subject thoroughly.

    Here is the link to the article with plenty of pictures and explanations:

    http://smallestminority.blogspot.com/2005/01/why-ballistic-fingerprinting-doesnt.html

    However, like global warming/climate change enthusiastically repeating the lies and false claims (“the technology is mature”, “the database will be inexpensive to run”, “it will greatly aid solving crime” etc. and so forth ad bloody nauseam) it won’t stop the people that believe in technology without knowing a bloody thing about it being enthusiastically legislated to introduce the system.

  8. And from my archives, there is this report too:

    http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2012/01/bruce-w-krafft/just-how-practical-is-microstamping/

    The picture of the base of the cartridge case in the header is of a .40 S&W which uses a small pistol primer (the inset object with the microstamp impressed into it) and the diameter of the primer pocket is between 0.1745 and 0.1765 inches. I’ll leave it to your imagination the size of the microstamp and just how quickly it would wear and blur or how long it would take with a piece of crocus cloth to eliminate the detail.

  9. “California is a giant, open-air asylum run by the most deranged of the inmates”

    Erm, out of idle curiosity: what would you say France is in that coordinate system?

  10. “The ghost of Joseph Stalin is currently kicking himself for not thinking of that one.”

    Making the law impossible to comply with is kinda one of the central pillars of the Russian legal system, the other being arbitrariness of prosecution for non-compliance, since long before Stalin was born. So the disturbed spirits should be those of the “founding fathers”, because of the US’ becoming more similar to Russia.

  11. abacab

    “you can guarantee that they made this argument in the interests of a desired policy outcome, and would have ruled the opposite had the case been brought on another topic by a progressive group.”

    Well, of course. With progressives, it’s deductive reasoning all the way down. It’s just strange that they apply it in a Common Law jurisdiction whose reasoning is inductive. Where ‘strange’ = utterly predictable, but mad.

  12. It is amazing how many bits of Atlas Shrugged pop up in the real world. Make everyone guilty of something, the state doesn’t want innocent men as they have no power over them.

  13. “It is amazing how many bits of Atlas Shrugged pop up in the real world”

    This particular bit of Atlas Shrugged is in fact an unoriginal description of real world as it has been since time immemorial in Russia, where Ms. Rosenbaum happened to have escaped from. What is sad is that it’s creeping into the West, suggesting the latter may have acquired potentially lethal institutional immunity deficit.

  14. Ivan – fair point.

    You read the book and it seems prophetic when you look at veni, etc. Then you remember that all these terrible ideas have been repeatedly implemented across the world for 100+ years including esp USSR

  15. The law enforcement people who might think this will help haven’t thought it through. I know these judges haven’t. If you don’t want certain leaps in technology don’t force them. In this case caseless ammunition for non-rifled firearms.

    Sub caliber with no markings on the rounds, how do you trace that? I designed a system in the late 90’s for various reasons, so yes it’s quite workable.

  16. So what happens in this microstamping world after the first murder where the killer picks up his brass, then drops a casing he picked up at a firing range and the innocent person who fired that round gets banged up?

  17. TomJ – that’s mixing up Justice with process.
    Crime –> Evidence –> Accused –> Sentence
    Guilt is an optional extra and usually too much trouble.
    In the case you suggest, the System would be very happy to have someone convicted. It really doesn’t matter who. Case closed.

    Similar flaws in cigarette ends and used condoms. Any villain with an ounce of sense will cross-contaminate with as much false DNA as they can.

    I still have some hope in the legal system, but its faded a lot recently.

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