January 24, 2013

Strategia Aliquis?

Strategy has always been an issue. Hell, more like a subscription.

In the 90’s there was some credence given to the idea of appeasement. It wasn’t named as such but that’s what it was. Signing on to some form of gun control to prevent something “worse” from being passed was the typical excuse. Numbers were against us, inevitability was presumed without much argument, etc. That got us 10 years of 10 rounds and no bayonet lugs, as well as misdemeanors being a disqualifying offense in some cases, and various other insanities on the local level.

When we started pushing back, we started to get some results – liberalization of concealed carry laws (a qualified success, not a complete one) constitutional carry in a few states, the AWB quietly fading into the night, some significant court victories (again, qualified), etc.

So I can only hope that we’ve learned our lessons – appeasement = bad, assertiveness = good. But if I believe we’d learned then I wouldn’t be typing now.

Language is the first step – whoever controls the language controls the debate. That’s something we’ve been bad at, albeit partially cause the mainstream media has been hesitant about correction. But it’s something we should not neglect.

Resolve is important, and in the House that’s worrisome. Boehner folding like a lawn chair in a gale isn’t exactly a bit of random paranoia. Keeping the blue dogs in the senate on our side never should have been thought of as easy. and keeping gun owners themselves from spouting off about how they’ve got no problem with permits or DNA testing or whatever is not an easy thing to do.

An objective is arguably the most important thing. Controlling the debate and having resolve do no frakkin good what so ever if you don’t have a goal in mind. It’s like having a great job, nice wheels, some really spiffy cologne and guaranteed to work pick up lines but being unsure of which gender to hit on at the party, or even where the party's at.

So if we can get those 3 things together there’s a good chance things won’t turn out as bad as they would otherwise. If we don’t – well might as well starting buying swords cause you know they’ll be the next to be verboten. (I recommend Cold Steel, though CASHanwei has some lovely choices - they even have a tactical line!!!!+22/2!!!!).

What I would like y’all to keep in mind is that we’re individuals. If one of us gets caught molesting Llamas then it’d be wrong for anyone to assume we’re all camelid connoisseurs. I’ve never been much on groups of any kind; beyond the nuclear family I get distrustful in a hurry when 3+ humans congregate for any reason Group punishment or collective responsibility is right out. And in part that kind of warped thinking is what our enemies are using agin us. Several punks committed heinous acts and that’s the justification for punishing us to them.

To be more precise, a few despicable cowards acted In a manner most evil, and my enemies want to punish me for it. Keep in mind it’s personal, and treat it as such.

Groups can be useful to achieve goals that’d be hard for an individual. Barn raising comes to mind, as does disassembling a Remington Model 51 (doubt me? Try to detail strip one of those suckers with just 2 hands). But don’t make the mistake that our enemies do; don’t forget we’re in this as individuals, not part of a neatly labeled mass.

Our enemies are individuals too. If we forget that we lose chances to exploit their weaknesses. They’re not faceless or nameless or some indistinguishable blob (though in some cases the latter is hard to reconcile). We know about them; how they act, talk, fight and in some cases think. Those are things we can use to our advantage.

But first we have to nail those 3 things I mentioned a bit ago – we have to start controlling the language. We have to have some sense of resolution, and we have to have a goal. Just saying “no” isn’t enough. We have to determine what we want out of this thing.

I missed that whole prag v 3%’er thing, but you can guess that pragmatism isn’t my sole consideration. The perfect may be the enemy of the good but it’s just as true that mediocrity is the enemy of us all. What was it that Goldwater said?

“I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue”

Yes Goldwater got his ass kicked in the general election, but without Goldwater there wouldn’t have been Reagan (in Fact Reagan got his political career started stumping for Goldwater). There’s another lesson to be learned, one that Republicans seem to be in large part unwilling to digest.

Goldwater was correct about a lot of things, but he was labeled as too extreme. So more moderate candidates replaced him. Know who those more electable candidates were? In the senate it was John McCain, and for the presidency it was Richard Nixon. So it could be argued that swinging for the fences with the risk of striking out is better in the long run than bunting.

I’ll pick on the Republicans again, just cause it's easy – they have no long term strategy. Not even a medium term. Hell it’s currently debatable if they even have a short term strategy. That’s a mistake we should avoid. Having a plan for today, or next month is cool, but it’s damn near meaningless if in 6 months or 6 years there’s no idea of what to reach for.

So in the short term it’s easy to identify our goals – block any new prior restraint based gun control laws. That’s simple enough, though by no means easy. Medium term and long term though, what do we want?

Again I’m not a group I can’t speak for y’all, I can only speak for myself. What I want is a repeal of all prior restraint based gun control laws. That’d be medium to long term, and after that a continuation of a gun control free zone anywhere around me or those I care for – which means it’d have to include everyone.

How to get there is trickier, but you can’t navigate a course if you don’t know your destination.

I’ll try to toss around some separate posts dealing with the 3 part strategy I’m suggesting, as well as anything else I have time and motivation to get around to. and by all means, suggestions or even arguments are welcome. In the end I’ll advocate what’s best for me and mine, and you’ll have to figure out if that’s best for you and yourn, but I have a feeling that what I want or myself is at least in degree what y’all want for yourselves.

Posted by Publicola at January 24, 2013 01:31 AM | TrackBack
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