Why so much Ammo Uncle Sam? What Me Worry?

Editor’s Note – SUA has been reporting massive government purchases of ammunition, military style vehicles, and the militarization of law enforcement for most of the Obama administration as well as promoting Obama as the number one salesman of civilian gun purchases for the past several years.

Why, because there is no mistaking it now, the Federal, State, and Local authorities are gearing up for civil strife, some say civil war. Why, because the obvious is happening – the country is falling apart at the seams and more, and we can blame the political set for our demise. But, America will not put up with it and they know it.

Record ammunition sales – why?

That is why they are purchasing bullets meant to kill by a mushrooming round deep in your body, in huge volume, and interesting styles; not just war type ammunition, but people killers, and then there are the war time vehicles and FEMA plans as well. These are people killers, that means you and your family, and these bullets are not allowed by Geneva Conventions in war, so why the massive purchases? Why do they fear Americans?

Make no mistake, these purchases are in addition to the one plus billion already ordered and delivered. Ask anyone seeking to purchase ammunition, its as valuable as gold of late. Our friends in the retail and wholesale arms business tell us the story – its never been better for them, both for civilians and the government in sales.

Many manufacturers and sales to states and law enforcement where gun laws have become anti-constitutional have tripled to over 44 companies. (Also see more here, what a list!)

Its about time main stream publications are noticing now. Here are some of our older posts about this ongoing issue:

The sad and alarming thing is that they are up arming everything and arming the most interesting federal agencies like our Park Rangers, USDA agents, EPA agents and every other law enforcement division including all Inspectors General. Then there are the drones – thanks goes to Senator Rand Paul who is helping elevate this discourse. It truly is time to reign in the Federal Government – tyranny abounds if you do not share your voice.

Why so much Ammo Uncle Sam? What, me worry? Yes, it is time to worry!

1.6 Billion Rounds Of Ammo For Homeland Security? It’s Time For A National Conversation

By Ralph Benko, Contributor – Forbes.com

The Denver Post, on February 15th, ran an Associated Press article entitled Homeland Security aims to buy 1.6b rounds of ammo, so far to little notice.  It confirmed that the Department of Homeland Security has issued an open purchase order for 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition.  As reported elsewhere, some of this purchase order is for hollow-point rounds, forbidden by international law for use in war, along with a frightening amount specialized for snipers. Also reported elsewhere, at the height of the Iraq War the Army was expending less than 6 million rounds a month.  Therefore 1.6 billion rounds would be enough to sustain a hot war for 20+ years.  In America.

Add to this perplexing outré purchase of ammo, DHS now is showing off its acquisition of heavily armored personnel carriers, repatriated from the Iraqi and Afghani theaters of operation.  As observed by “paramilblogger” Ken Jorgustin last September:

[T]he Department of Homeland Security is apparently taking delivery (apparently through the  Marine Corps Systems Command, Quantico VA, via the manufacturer – Navistar Defense LLC) of an undetermined number of the recently retrofitted 2,717 ‘Mine Resistant Protected’ MaxxPro MRAP vehicles for service on the streets of the United States.”

These MRAP’s ARE BEING SEEN ON U.S. STREETS all across America by verified observers with photos, videos, and descriptions.”

Regardless of the exact number of MRAP’s being delivered to DHS (and evidently some to POLICE via DHS, as has been observed), why would they need such over-the-top vehicles on U.S. streets to withstand IEDs, mine blasts, and 50 caliber hits to bullet-proof glass? In a war zone… yes, definitely. Let’s protect our men and women. On the streets of America… ?”

“They all have gun ports… Gun Ports? In the theater of war, yes. On the streets of America…?

Seriously, why would DHS need such a vehicle on our streets?”

Why indeed?  It is utterly inconceivable that Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is planning a coup d’etat against President Obama, and the Congress, to install herself as Supreme Ruler of the United States of America.  There, however, are real signs that the Department bureaucrats are running amok.  About 20 years ago this columnist worked, for two years, in the U.S. Department of Energy’s general counsel’s office in its procurement and finance division.  And is wise to the ways.   The answer to “why would DHS need such a vehicle?” almost certainly is this:  it’s a cool toy and these (reportedly) million dollar toys are being recycled, without much of a impact on the DHS budget.  So… why not?

Why, indeed, should the federal government not be deploying armored personnel carriers and stockpiling enough ammo for a 20-year war in the homeland?  Because it’s wrong in every way.  President Obama has an opportunity, now, to live up to some of his rhetoric by helping the federal government set a noble example in a matter very close to his heart (and that of his Progressive base), one not inimical to the Bill of Rights: gun control.  The federal government can (for a nice change) begin practicing what it preaches by controlling itself.

Remember the Sequester?  The president is claiming its budget cuts will inconvenience travelers by squeezing essential services provided by the (opulently armed and stylishly uniformed) DHS.  Quality ammunition is not cheap.  (Of course, news reports that DHS is about to spend $50 million on new uniforms suggests a certain cavalier attitude toward government frugality.)

Spending money this way is beyond absurd well into perverse.  According to the AP story a DHS spokesperson justifies this acquisition to “help the government get a low price for a big purchase.” Peggy Dixon, spokeswoman for the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center:  “The training center and others like it run by the Homeland Security Department use as many as 15 million rounds every year, mostly on shooting ranges and in training exercises.”

At 15 million rounds (which, in itself, is pretty extraordinary and sounds more like fun target-shooting-at-taxpayer-expense than a sensible training exercise) … that’s a stockpile that would last DHS over a century.  To claim that it’s to “get a low price” for a ridiculously wasteful amount is an argument that could only fool a career civil servant.

Meanwhile, Senator Diane Feinstein, with the support of President Obama, is attempting to ban 100 capacity magazine clips.  Doing a little apples-to-oranges comparison, here, 1.6 billion rounds is … 16 million times more objectionable.

Mr. Obama has a long history of disdain toward gun ownership.  According to Prof. John Lott, in Debacle, a book he co-authored with iconic conservative strategist Grover Norquist,

“When I was first introduced to Obama (when both worked at the University of ChicagoLaw School, where Lott was famous for his analysis of firearms possession), he said, ‘Oh, you’re the gun guy.’

I responded: ‘Yes, I guess so.’

’I don’t believe that people should own guns,’ Obama replied.

I then replied that it might be fun to have lunch and talk about that statement some time.

He simply grimaced and turned away. …

Unlike other liberal academics who usually enjoyed discussing opposing ideas, Obama showed disdain.”

Mr. Obama?  Where’s the disdain now?  Cancelling, or at minimum, drastically scaling back — by 90% or even 99%, the DHS order for ammo, and its receipt and deployment of armored personnel carriers, would be a “fourfer.”

  • The federal government would set an example of restraint in the matter of weaponry.
  • It would reduce the deficit without squeezing essential services.
  • It would do both in a way that was palatable to liberals and conservatives, slightly depolarizing America.
  • It would somewhat defuse, by the government making itself less armed-to-the-teeth, the anxiety of those who mistrust the benevolence of the federales.

If Obama doesn’t show any leadership on this matter it’s an opportunity for Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, and Rep. Michael McCaul, chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, to summon Secretary Napolitano over for a little national conversation. Madame Secretary?  Buying 1.6 billion rounds of ammo and deploying armored personnel carriers runs contrary, in every way, to what “homeland security” really means.  Discuss.

Napolitano – Al Qaeda threatens attacks in US

Editor’s Note – The threats just keep coming. As we reported Sunday, Janet Napolitano is confirming now. Al Qaeda, the same group the White House called much diminished, appears to be quite the opposite. Back in April, the very same officials told us the threat was much lower – which is it?

Al Qaeda in Iraq threatens attacks in U.S.

The militant group Al Qaeda in Iraq, which has rebuilt its campaign in the Persian Gulf nation, wants to launch attacks in the United States, intelligence officials say.

By Brian Bennett, Washington Bureau/LA Times

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi - Leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq

WASHINGTON — The militant organization that was once the scourge of the U.S. militarycampaign in Iraq and probably is responsible for more than 100 deaths in the country over the last few days has set its sights on launching attacks in the United States, intelligence officials said.

Al Qaeda in Iraq released a message this week that threatened to strike at the “heart” of the United States, and several associates of the group have been arrested in the U.S. and Canada in the last two years, said American officials, a sign that the organization has tried to establish a network in North America.

The arrests highlight “the potential threat posed to the United States” from Al Qaeda in Iraq, said Matthew Olsen, the director of the National Counterterrorism Center, during a hearing Wednesday before the House Homeland Security Committee examining the current threat from terrorism to the United States.

Al Qaeda in Iraq had been known primarily for launching attacks against the American forces in Iraq and the Shiite Muslim-led government there, as well as helping to plot attacks in neighboring Jordan.

But “there are networks and recruiting efforts in the U.S. and Canada,” said Seth Jones, an expert on Al Qaeda at the Rand Corp. and author of “Hunting in the Shadows: The Pursuit of Al Qaeda since9/11.”

“You can say pretty categorically that Al Qaeda in Iraq appears to be strengthening from where it was two years ago,” even as Al Qaeda’s senior leaders in Pakistan have been killed, Jones said.

Al Qaeda in Iraq was pummeled more than five years ago by a coalition of Sunni Arab tribal leaders in western Iraq and U.S. forces, but experts who study Al Qaeda say that the organization in Iraq has begun to rebuild, energized in the last year by the violent uprising next door in Syria and an influx of cash from wealthy benefactors in the Persian Gulf. U.S. forces withdrew from Iraq in December.

On Sunday, the day before the latest wave of attacks in Iraq killed at least 110 people, the militant group released an audio recording to mark the beginning of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The message announced a new campaign of violence against the Iraqi government, praised Syria’s uprising and made a call for new recruits to join the group. It also spoke directly to Americans.

“You will soon witness how attacks will resound in the heart of your land, because our war with you has now started,” said a man that identified himself as Abu Bakr Baghdadi, the pseudonym used by the head of Al Qaeda in Iraq.

Attacking inside the United States is easier said than done, said Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), who sits on the House Homeland Security Committee and has been briefed on the threat to the U.S. from the Iraqi group.

“But when you have the leader signaling that it is time to go on the offensive, there is a heightened sense of concern for law enforcement and intelligence agencies here in the U.S.,” McCaul said.

Two Iraqi refugees were arrested in Kentucky in May of last year and charged with attempting to ship weapons from the U.S. to assist Al Qaeda in Iraq. The fingerprint of one of the men had allegedly been found on a bomb that attacked a U.S. convoy in Iraq in 2005. Federal officials believe the two men had been trained to build roadside bombs from cordless telephones.

In January 2011, a Canadian man named Faruq Isa was arrested for allegedly recruiting fighters to launch attacks against U.S. forces in Iraq. Isa is fighting extradition to the U.S. from Canada to face charges of conspiracy to kill Americans.

Drones – Coming to the sky near you

SUA Staff – It appears there is not a square inch of land anywhere in the world that is exempt from a drone flying overhead. Drones are used for comprehensive surveillance and to drop missiles in targeted areas of known terror cells and networks. This makes sense because it means less soldiers are in harm’s way. It’s not an easy job either; it has effects on those who ‘drive’ them:

Researching his new book, Kill or Capture: The War on Terror and the Soul of the Obama PresidencyDan Klaidman at The Daily Beast talked to the State Department’s legal advisor Harold Koh.

In preparation for a speech, Koh spent hours in CIA headquarters at Langley interrogating drone pilots. Koh wanted to find out everything he could about their job, their lives, and the mentality behind all the ‘unmanned’ airstrikes and peppered the pilots with statements like: “I hear you guys have a PlayStation mentality.”

The drone pilots are now civilians, but most were former Air Force pilots who took offense at the notion they were armchair warriors so far removed from their mission that they felt nothing at all about the death and destruction they caused.

Klaidman says the lead pilot blew up on Koh and said:

“I used to fly my own air missions. I dropped bombs, hit my target load, but had no idea who I hit. Here I can look at their faces. I watch them for hours, see these guys playing with their kids and wives. When I get them alone, I have no compunction about blowing them to bits. But I wouldn’t touch them with civilians around. After the strike, I see the bodies being carried out of the house. I see the women weeping and in positions of mourning. That’s not PlayStation; that’s real. My job is to watch after the strike too. I count the bodies and watch the funerals. I don’t let others clean up the mess.” (Read more here.)

But what about at home?

Sure, there are reasons to use drones for surveillance in high risk areas like at the Southern border, however, using them over Nebraska and Iowa farms that are not high risk areas skirts the rights of the people living there. Now police departments are looking to employ them as well. In fact, the first recorded use of a drone to help police make an arrest occurred in North Dakota:

Drone-Aided Arrest Raises Questions About 4th Amendment

The story of the North Dakota man who was arrested by a SWAT team aided by a Department of Homeland SecurityPredator Drone has caught the public’s imagination. Approximately a year ago, Rodney Brossart got into a tussle with police over the ownership of six cows that had wandered onto his land.

As the situation escalated — there were reports that Brossart chased officers off his farm at gunpoint — the Grand Forks SWAT team called in a favor to the Department of Homeland Security.  Essentially, they asked the DHS if they could use its predator drone, located at a nearby Air Force Base to survey Brossart’s property, to ensure it was safe to apprehend him.

Without a hitch the unmanned aircraft was sent to Brossart’s property.  Once it arrived, SWAT used its high-tech surveillance cameras to check if the coast was clear – it was, so SWAT, with guns drawn, swarmed in on the disgruntled farmer.  Brossart was tasered, cuffed and subsequently charged for, among other crimes, terrorizing a sheriff.

He became the first American citizen to be arrested with the help of a Predator drone (something tells me, he won’t be the last). (Read the rest here.)

Is this within our fourth amendment rights?

DHS is not satisfied either. They are ordering more than they can use:

The Homeland Security Department ordered so many drones it can’t keep them all flying and doesn’t have a good plan for how to use them, according to a new audit that the department’s inspector general released Monday.

In a blunt assessment, investigators said Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Air and Marine has a fleet of nine “unmanned aircraft systems” and is awaiting a 10th — though it doesn’t have enough ground support and doesn’t have a good plan for prioritizing missions.

“CBP procured unmanned aircraft before implementing adequate plans,” the investigators said.

The Defense Department uses armed drones overseas in the war on terrorism, but American law enforcement agencies are increasingly turning to them for use in detecting or preventing crimes at home.

At the same time, they are butting heads with civil libertarians who worry about intrusion into innocent citizens’ private lives. (Read the rest here.)

How did we get here America and why are we allowing these illegal searches without a whimper?

Watch Words – Big Brother is watching at DHS

By SUA Staff – Again we see the razor thin edge between keeping America safe and spying on her citizens. Speech is being monitored, and the article below and our own previous reporting prove it. We also tested it, successfully; or rather they were successful, we just witnessed their handi-work.

Anyone who uses Facebook on a regular basis as does SUA, has seen the ‘anomalies’ first hand, or heard about them. It is common to see ‘posts’ disappear, or to have your conversation stopped amid stream, or to be cut-off from using your ‘wall’ altogether for some unknown reason. It is widely known or suspected that Facebook and other social networking sites collect tons of data, and if you use certain words too often, you too will witness the obvious monitoring.

With the reported 900,000,000 users of Facebook talking on-line, the numbers would tell you it’s impossible for humans to monitor every conversation, so how is it that a completely innocuous conversation gets stopped?

In a recent discussion witnessed by SUA, several ‘friends’ were discussing Islam and its history. There were no threats, no secrets, just a historical discussion of facts and opinions, some not so flattering to Islam…then, bingo, the conversation was cut-off.

We know, and can prove it; we performed screen captures.

Algorithms; formulas that are crawling across the sites spot these word usages, and bingo…they find them. These are not technical glitches, they are examples of proactive monitoring. How First Amendment compliant is that? How is that living up to the law that was created to protect you, and DHS’s image?

To the public, the surface explanation is two-fold, one to keep you safe, the other to monitor how the public perceives DHS and its activities. Why point two? Because DHS has credibility issues, it is perceived as ‘big brother’, it knows it has failed miserably on many occasions, so it needs to practice CYA. It knows there are tons of data they are not privy to, so they scan to see what citizen journalists have found.

Ostensibly, reading the actual words printed, it sounds like a great way for DHS to stay abreast of the mountains of information available from open sources that should be known by its staff and management. As public servants, its wise to be more conversant in all aspects of all events to make sure that the proper resources are being allocated, dangers are mitigated, and life-saving efforts can be maximized. Sounds great – our tax dollars going to a good thing; our government being wise and efficient.

To the more astute citizen, it is clearly watching what people say or do. It is then using and/or storing that data for future use in prosecutions, and more nefariously, for political gains. Like most government and political endeavors, there is ‘plausible deniability’ but the ‘adults in the room’ know and see through these thinly veiled excuses.

At what point are we sacrificing liberty for security?

_______________________

Revealed: Hundreds of words to avoid using online if you don’t want the government spying on you

  • (and they include ‘pork’, ‘cloud’ and ‘Mexico’)
  • Department of Homeland Security forced to release list following freedom of information request
  • Agency insists it only looks for evidence of genuine threats to the U.S. and not for signs of general dissent

By DANIEL MILLER – Daily Mail UK

The Department of Homeland Security has been forced to release a list of keywords and phrases it uses to monitor social networking sites and online media for signs of terrorist or other threats against the U.S.

Revealing: A list of keywords used by government analysts to scour the internet for evidence of threats to the U.S. has been released under the Freedom of Information Act

The intriguing the list includes obvious choices such as ‘attack’, ‘Al Qaeda’, ‘terrorism’ and ‘dirty bomb’ alongside dozens of seemingly innocent words like ‘pork’, ‘cloud’, ‘team’ and ‘Mexico’.

Released under a freedom of information request, the information sheds new light on how government analysts are instructed to patrol the internet searching for domestic and external threats.

The words are included in the department’s 2011 Analyst’s Desktop Binder‘ used by workers at their National Operations Center which instructs workers to identify ‘media reports that reflect adversely on DHS and response activities’.

Department chiefs were forced to release the manual following a House hearing over documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit which revealed how analysts monitor social networks and media organisations for comments that ‘reflect adversely’ on the government.

However they insisted the practice was aimed not at policing the internet for disparaging remarks about the government and signs of general dissent, but to provide awareness of any potential threats.

As well as terrorism, analysts are instructed to search for evidence of unfolding natural disasters, public health threats and serious crimes such as mall/school shootings, major drug busts, illegal immigrant busts.

The list has been posted online by the Electronic Privacy Information Center – a privacy watchdog group who filed a request under the Freedom of Information Act before suing to obtain the release of the documents.

In a letter to the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Counter-terrorism and Intelligence, the centre described the choice of words as ‘broad, vague and ambiguous’.

They point out that it includes ‘vast amounts of First Amendment protected speech that is entirely unrelated to the Department of Homeland Security mission to protect the public against terrorism and disasters.’

A senior Homeland Security official told the Huffington Post that the manual ‘is a starting point, not the endgame’ in maintaining situational awareness of natural and man-made threats and denied that the government was monitoring signs of dissent.

However the agency admitted that the language used was vague and in need of updating.

Spokesman Matthew Chandler told website: ‘To ensure clarity, as part of … routine compliance review, DHS will review the language contained in all materials to clearly and accurately convey the parameters and intention of the program.’

FDA Police? The American Police State

By SUA Staff – We have witnessed a great expansion of power by the Executive Branch of government in recent years with the creation of Czars, Signing Statements, Executive Orders, the NDAA, Obama Care, the Patriot Act, massive land grabs, and much more…including circumventing the Congress and openly challenging the Judicial Branch. But what most people do not know, is that the Executive Branch employs more offices of law enforcement than you would believe.

One of these agencies, the FDA, the Food and Drug Administration, was the subject of a vote in Congress today. Rand Paul of Kentucky offered an amendment that speaks to this issue. He asked why the FDA needs guns. He mentioned there are over 40 federal agencies that have police powers, but he was underestimating.

His amendment to do away with these ‘insane’ police powers failed today, but we thought you may want to know more in the context of the growing police state that is America.

The number of Federal Agencies with police powers has grown dramatically since a study was conducted by Sarah Foster for WND in 1997 that was eye-opening then:

From Comeandtakeit.com – By Sarah Foster, 1997, WorldNetDaily.com

According to a recent report from the General Accounting Office, as of last September, the number of law enforcement personnel stood at just under 50,000 — distributed through 45 agencies — an increase of about 12,000 agents in 10 years with 2,436 added in 1996 alone. These are full-time agents, authorized to execute searches, make arrests, and/or carry firearms “if necessary.”

But that number is not complete. When some 7,145 Customs inspectors and 317 Customs Department pilots are added — all of whom have the above listed law enforcement powers — the total is pushing 60,000. Why doesn’t the GAO count them? Not because they aren’t armed and dangerous, but because they have different retirement benefits.

In a recent look by SUA, there are at least 50 offices where law enforcement powers exist. These do not include the ones we all know; those within the Department of Justice, the Department of Homeland Security, our military, and the Department of State. Six other law enforcement offices also not counted are in the Judicial and Legislative Branches. We also excluded the CIA from that number.

Some are easily explained, since Offices of the Inspector General (OIG) exist in most agencies, but it is surprising to learn about a few: (Likely not comprehensive we fear.)

  • Department of Agriculture (USDA) – U.S. Forest Service, OIG
  • Department of Commerce (DOC) – National Institute of Standards & Technology Police, NOAA Fisheries OLE, OIG,
  • Department of Education – OIG
  • Department of Energy (DOE) – Health Safety and Security, OIG
  • Department of Health and Human Services – Office of Criminal Investigations, National Institute of Health Police, OIG
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development – Protective Services Division, OIG
  • Department of the Interior (USDI) – Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Mgt., National Park Service, Rangers, OIG
  • Department of Labor – OIG
  • Department of Transportation – OIG
  • Department of the Treasury – Engraving and Print Police, IRS Criminal Division, OIG for Tax Administration, Mint Police, Special OIG for TARP
  • Department of Veterans Affairs – OIG, VA Police
  • United States Environmental Protection Agency – Criminal Division, OIG
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) – Security Services, OIG
  • Nuclear Regulatory Commission – OIG
  • Office of Personnel Management – OIG
  • Railroad Retirement Board – OIG
  • Small Business Administration – OIG
  • Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation – OIG
  • General Services Administration – OIG
  • United States Postal Service (USPS) – OIG, Inspection Services, Postal Police
  • Smithsonian Institution – Protection Services, National Zoological Park Police, OIG
  • Amtrak – Amtrak Ploice, OIG
  • Federal Reserve Bank – Federal Reserve Police
  • Tennessee Valley Authority – TVA Police, OIG
  • United States Agency for International Development – OIG

TARP has police? Perhaps the most perplexing law enforcement unit at the Federal level is the Special OIG for TARP, yes the Troubled Assets Relief Program, and please, tell us what the US Agency for International Development even is, and why does it need an Inspector General? We searched for a comprehensive report on just how many law enforcement personnel there are on the Federal level, but by the time of this posting, we had yet to locate those data.

All of this raises many questions, especially in light of recent reports SUA and many others have shown regarding the massive amounts of ammunition that was recently ordered. It is also important to ask why these types of ammunition are needed.

The folks at Natural News report on these questions, and they make quite a statement about what many believe is coming, wide-spread civil strife, possibly even open hostilities between the Federal government and its citizens. You be the judge.

From our previous reports:

ATK, the company now infamous for supplying upwards of 750 million rounds of .40 caliber hollow point ammunition to the Department of Homeland Security, has just secured a $266 million dollar contract to supply ammunition to the U.S. Army. (ATK press release on first contract awarded.)

From Natural News:

…”hollow point” ammunition is never purchased for practice or training. This ammunition is purchased for the sole purpose of being used in active fighting. At the same time, it is a violation of the Geneva Convention to use hollow point ammunition on the battle field.

Furthermore, DHS does not fight wars overseas. It is a domestic agency with domestic responsibilities.

Natural News also asked in its article what 450 million rounds means, but of course we know the actual number is much higher from more recent reports of other ammunition orders. But their insight and questions show in stark relief what that much ammo really means:

…located testimony by Maj. Gen. Buford C. Blount III, given in 2004 before the Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee of the Committee on Armed Services of the House of Representatives. This testimony reveals that: In active battle operations in Iraq, ammunition is expended at the rate of 5.5 million rounds per month.

That’s 66 million rounds in a year. The General’s testimony states that the “past year” in Iraq “resulted in the expenditure of 72 million rounds,” which isn’t too far off from 66 million. I’ll use 70 million as a rough figure for annual ammo usage in an active war zone.

This is 70 million rounds of all types, including rifle rounds such as 5.56, .308, .50, etc. Pistol rounds most likely include 9mm (the common NATO round) and .45. There isn’t much .40 pistol ammo used by soldiers serving overseas, by the way.

There are so many instances popping up in the news, at least on the internet, where the real news gets reported, about crazy raids. Armed raids on the Amish for selling milk, the Gibson Guitar factory fiasco, the EPA debacle at Priest River, Idaho, and so on. No wonder the fear factor is off the charts, and everyone fears FEMA instead of lauding it as a safety net in times of disaster. It is actually beyond that fear alone now, a growing number of Americans are in abject fear of all that is Federal these days.

Incessant lies, twisted statistics, disingenuous rhetoric, plausible deniability arguments, and craftily worded messages abound. No wonder so many have lost trust in the government. More to come, of that we are sure…

Rand Paul Introduces Amendment to End the FDA’s Insane Police Powers:

“I see no reason to have the FDA carrying weapons.”

By  – Reason.com

“I think we have bigger problems in our country than sending armed FDA agents into peaceful farmers’ land and telling them they can’t sell milk directly from the cow,” Rand Paul said yesterday in a rousing speech calling for an end to the Food and Drug Administration’s police powers. More from the transcript, provided by Paul’s office:

Some of you might be surprised the FDA is armed. Well, you shouldn’t be.

We have nearly 40 federal agencies that are armed. I’m not against having police, I’m not against the army, the military, the FBI, but I think bureaucrats don’t need to be carrying weapons and I think what we ought to do, is if there is a need for an armed policeman to be there, the FBI who are trained to do this should do it. But I don’t think it’s a good idea to be arming bureaucrats to go on the farm to, with arms, to stop people from selling milk from a cow.

I think we have too many armed federal agencies, and that we need to put an end to this. Criminal law seems to be increasing, increasingly is using a tool of our government bureaucracy to punish and control honest businessmen for simply attempting to make a living.

Historically the criminal law was intended to punish only the most horrible offenses that everyone agreed were inherently wrong or evil, offenses like rape, murder, theft, arson – but now we’ve basically federalized thousands of activities and called them crimes.

If bureaucrats need to involve the police, let’s have them use the FBI, but I see no reason to have the FDA carrying weapons.

Paul’s amendment to the Prescription Drug User Fee Act has two parts: Part I would allow the makers of health products to advertise their benefits. “There’s no earthly reason why somebody who markets prune juice can’t advertise it helps with constipation,” Paul said. Part II of the amendment would prohibit FDA employees (as well as all other Health and Human Services employees) from carrying weapons and making arrests without warrants.  (See the video of the speech here at Reason.com.)

The amendment failed by a vote of 78-15