Programming note: Friday morning I’ll be leaving for this year’s abbreviated elk/mulie hunt. I’ll have a Rule Five Friday post pre-loaded, the Saturday Gingermageddon will go off as usual; Monday through Wednesday we’ll have some totty filler posts. Regular posts will continue Thursday – and Friday the 11th and Monday the 14th’s posts will come to you from Anchorage, Alaska!
Now, moving on. This just in from Reason.com: Gun Control is Tax-Subsidized Marketing for Illegal Machine Guns. Excerpt:
“DIY submachine guns are popping up across the West Bank,” the Washington Post reported recently in a piece about a weapon that has repeatedly played a role in Palestinian attacks upon Israelis. The guns are of a common type referred to as the “Carlo,” based on the Swedish Carl Gustav M/45, which dates to the World War 2 era. The article added that hundreds of the submachine guns have been confiscated over the past year, and raids staged on 35 mechanics’ shops that were cranking them out.
“The Carlo has remained so popular because of how little machinery and technical know-how is required to produce it,” a Times of Israel story noted earlier this year. “A drill press, some welding equipment and blueprints from the internet are all that’s needed to create one of these potentially devastating weapons.” The story lamented that “it’s nearly impossible to prevent its production.”
Ironically, Israelis themselves relied on homemade submachine guns during their War of Independence. In their case, they knocked off copies of the British-designed Sten gun and fed them with ammunition manufactured in a clandestine factory beneath a laundry. Similarly to the weapon copied by West Bank mechanics, “the Sten used simple stamped metal components and minor welding, which required minimal machining and manufacturing,” according to Wikipedia.
A simple submachine gun like the Sten, the Carl Gustav or the M3 Grease Gun is one of the simplest firearms to manufacture. Anyone with a drill press, a mill and a half-assed knowledge of how to use both can crank out a rough short-range lead-chucker that will be orders of magnitude more lethal and also far easier to produce than a handgun of any sort.
It’s near-impossible to build a Glock or a Smith & Wesson without sophisticated machinery. It’s pretty easy to build a Sten gun. It’s happening now all over the world, from the West Bank to Australia. If Her Imperial Majesty was able to realize the wet dreams of the more extreme gun-grabbers here in the States, you’d see it happening here too.
It’s basically a fundamental law of the universe: Bans produce black markets. That doesn’t stop the collection of nitwits and nincompoops we call our ‘political leaders’ from attempting such bans.
Conclusion to the linked article: …if you’re going to make something illegally, you might as well get the most bang for your buck out of the means you have at hand. If you’re looking to supply the demand for drugs, you cook methamphetamine in motel room laboratories. And if you’re supplying the illegal arms market, you download the plans for a Sten gun to a laptop in a brake-repair shop.
From the West Bank, to Brazil, to Australia, history demonstrates that if you want people to start making their own submachine guns, all you have to do is legally restrict their access to firearms of all sorts.