International gun-murder comparisons

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Peter K. Boucher

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Sep 17, 1993, 11:33:09 AM9/17/93
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Tim! Welcome back! I've missed you. None of the other anti's
around here ever provides the kind of stimulating debate that you
do.

Note that I've changed the subject title (was "Lesbians accuse gay
bar of bias"). I've e-mailed Tim a copy of this, so he won't miss
the chance to respond (please).

In article <LAMBERT.93...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca>,
lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:
[...]
|> Progunners have to reach into the third world and get their facts
|> wrong for their comparisons -- Switzerland does not have more gun
|> owners than the US (no matter whether you count total owners, percent
|> owners, or militia guns as `owned').

I won't argue with this, Tim, because it's not crucial to my point,
which was that comparisons of this nature between countries are
not valid. I will note that your assertion was not accompanied by
any factual data that would clarify the situation. Is it not true
that every Swiss male between the ages of 18 and ?? is a member of
the armed forces (or reserves), and keeps a fully automatic ``assault
rifle'' in his home?

Or is your claim based on absolute numbers versus ownership rates?
That would be a pretty deceptive tactic, given that you didn't
spell it out that this was what you meant. Tell me, Tim, have you
been studying "How to lie with statistics" again?

|> > If you would like to argue that such
|> > comparisons are relevant, perhaps you can explain to me why the
|> > homicide rate in Japan is 2.3 TIMES as high as the homicide rate
|> > among Japanese-Americans (who live here -- where all the guns are).
|>
|> Easy. It isn't.

Easy if you blindly deny without researching the facts. Easy to
reject out of hand because it doesn't fit in with your prejudice.
Easy if you ignore the request for an explanation, and instead
provide a bald assertion. Easy for you, Tim.

``One way one might crudely and partially control for United
States-Japan cultural differences is to compare homicide rates among
Japanese-Americans, who live where guns are plentiful, with the homicide
rates of their presumably culturally similar brethren in Japan, where
private gun ownership is nearly nonexistent. Certainly this pair of
populations is more comparable than the population of Japan compared
with the entire U.S. population. Up through 1979, the FBI reported
homicide arrests sorted by racial breakdowns which included "Japanese."
For the period 1976-1978, 21 of 48,695 arrests for murder and
nonnegligent manslaughter were of Japanese-Americans, or 0.04% (U.S. FBI
1977-1979). Applying this fraction to the total of 57,460 homicides
yields an estimate of 24.78 killings by Japanese-Americans for 1976-
1978, or about 8.26 per year. With 791,000 persons of Japanese ancestry
in the United States in 1980 (U.S. Bureau of the Census 1984), this
translates into an annual rate of 1.04 homicides per 100,000 population.
For the same 1976-1978 period, the annual homicide rate in Japan
averaged 2.45 (United Nations 1982, pp. 192, 718). Thus, crudely
controlling for Japanese culture in this way indicates that in Japan,
where civilian gun ownership is virtually nonexistent and gun control
laws are extremely strict, the homicide rate is 2.3 times as high as it
is among Japanese-Americans living where guns are easily available and
gun laws are far less restrictive.''
-- University of Florida criminologist Gary Kleck


P.S. I see that you didn't try to defend the claim that "the United States
has hundreds of times more handgun murders each year than any other
nation on Earth." Why is that, Tim?

--
Peter K. Boucher
--
DISCLAIMER: The above does not necessarily represent the opinions of my employer.

Tim Lambert

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Sep 20, 1993, 11:10:54 AM9/20/93
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>>>>> On 17 Sep 1993 10:33:09 -0500, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) said:
> Tim! Welcome back! I've missed you. None of the other anti's
> around here ever provides the kind of stimulating debate that you
> do.

Allow me to return the compliment -- you are one of the more
entertaining anti's around here.

> (Tim Lambert) writes:
> [...]
> |> Progunners have to reach into the third world and get their facts
> |> wrong for their comparisons -- Switzerland does not have more gun
> |> owners than the US (no matter whether you count total owners, percent
> |> owners, or militia guns as `owned').

> I won't argue with this, Tim, because it's not crucial to my point,
> which was that comparisons of this nature between countries are
> not valid. I will note that your assertion was not accompanied by
> any factual data that would clarify the situation. Is it not true
> that every Swiss male between the ages of 18 and ?? is a member of
> the armed forces (or reserves), and keeps a fully automatic ``assault
> rifle'' in his home?

Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew
and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
countries. Handguns were present in 29% of US households.
Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified
as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households
with any sort of gun.

> Or is your claim based on absolute numbers versus ownership rates?
> That would be a pretty deceptive tactic, given that you didn't
> spell it out that this was what you meant.

I wrote "no matter whether you count total owners, percent owners, or
militia guns as `owned'". Is there something unclear about that
statement?

> Tell me, Tim, have you been studying "How to lie with statistics" again?

Darrell Huff's classic book tells you how to detect statistical lies.
A skill I find useful in reading yours and other's postings in this group.

> |> > If you would like to argue that such
> |> > comparisons are relevant, perhaps you can explain to me why the
> |> > homicide rate in Japan is 2.3 TIMES as high as the homicide rate
> |> > among Japanese-Americans (who live here -- where all the guns are).
> |>
> |> Easy. It isn't.

> Easy if you blindly deny without researching the facts.

It is you who has blindly asserted without researching the facts.

> ``One way one might crudely and partially control for United
> States-Japan cultural differences is to compare homicide rates among
> Japanese-Americans, who live where guns are plentiful, with the homicide
> rates of their presumably culturally similar brethren in Japan, where
> private gun ownership is nearly nonexistent. Certainly this pair of
> populations is more comparable than the population of Japan compared
> with the entire U.S. population.

Not necessarily. The US does not accept immigrants with criminal
records, so this group of Japanese-Amerocans will be less likely to
commit homicide than the general Japanese population.


> Up through 1979, the FBI reported
> homicide arrests sorted by racial breakdowns which included "Japanese."
> For the period 1976-1978, 21 of 48,695 arrests for murder and
> nonnegligent manslaughter were of Japanese-Americans, or 0.04% (U.S. FBI
> 1977-1979).

A 95% confidence interval is 0.03% to 0.07%.

> Applying this fraction to the total of 57,460 homicides
> yields an estimate of 24.78 killings by Japanese-Americans for 1976-
> 1978, or about 8.26 per year.

This assume that there is no racial bias in the arrest patterns of any
US police force.

> With 791,000 persons of Japanese ancestry
> in the United States in 1980 (U.S. Bureau of the Census 1984), this
> translates into an annual rate of 1.04 homicides per 100,000 population.

There are two different definitions of "Japanese" being used here --
Japanese ancestry (note that a person can have multiple ancestries)
and police ticking a box marked "Japanese" on an FBI form (what do
they do if they don't know/care?).

Considering all the factors above, we can guess that the homicide rate
for Japanese-Americans is somewhere between 0.5 and 3.0 per 100,000 pop.

> For the same 1976-1978 period, the annual homicide rate in Japan
> averaged 2.45 (United Nations 1982, pp. 192, 718).

No it didn't. Kleck can't read. That's the rate for BE50 "All other
external causes". The reference does not tell us the homicide rate
for 76-78, but if Gary had turned to page 777 he would have discovered
that for 79 they split category BE50 into AM54 (Homicide) and AM55 )Other
violence), with rates of 1.0 and 1.5 respectively. That is, homicides
were 40% of the "All other external causes" deaths. If this was true
for 76-78, the homicide rate in those years was 0.98 per 100,000 pop.

> Thus, crudely
> controlling for Japanese culture in this way indicates that in Japan,
> where civilian gun ownership is virtually nonexistent and gun control
> laws are extremely strict, the homicide rate is 2.3 times as high as it
> is among Japanese-Americans living where guns are easily available and
> gun laws are far less restrictive.''

The Japanese homicide rate is probably lower than that of Japanese
Americans, but there is insufficient data to have any certainty.

> -- University of Florida criminologist Gary Kleck

I hope the rest of his research isn't that sloppy.

> P.S. I see that you didn't try to defend the claim that "the United States
> has hundreds of times more handgun murders each year than any other
> nation on Earth." Why is that, Tim?

Unlike you I do not make a habit of defending false claims. I believe
that Switzerland manages to get within a factor of a hundred of the
US.

Tim

Danny Low

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Sep 20, 1993, 1:20:58 PM9/20/93
to
Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:

: > (Tim Lambert) writes:
: > [...]
: > |> Progunners have to reach into the third world and get their facts
: > |> wrong for their comparisons -- Switzerland does not have more gun
: > |> owners than the US (no matter whether you count total owners, percent
: > |> owners, or militia guns as `owned').
: Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew

: and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
: victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
: countries. Handguns were present in 29% of US households.
^^^^^^^^
: Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified

: as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households
: with any sort of gun.

You are mixing "guns" and "handguns" in your postings. The difference
between "guns" which includes handguns, rifles and shotguns and
"handguns" is rather big. It changes the statistics totally. So
which is which? As it stands, your intermixing of the two terms
indicates you either ...

1. do not know what you are talking about or
2. you are deliberately mixing the terms so you
can use one set of statistics to fool people into
thinking you are talking about another set of statistics or
3. you are a very sloppy with your facts.


Danny Low
"Question Authority and the Authorities will question You"
Valley of Hearts Delight, Silicon Valley
HP CPCD dl...@pollux.svale.hp.com

Alfred A. Hambidge, Jr.

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Sep 20, 1993, 12:13:50 PM9/20/93
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>Not necessarily. The US does not accept immigrants with criminal
>records, so this group of Japanese-Amerocans will be less likely to
>commit homicide than the general Japanese population.

Hmm. Does INS request a records check from the country of origin for
every immigrant? If not, then this argument is meaningless.


Al Hambidge, Jr. Standard disclaimers apply.
"The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of
zeal, well meaning but without understanding." Justice Louis Brandeis

steve hix

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Sep 20, 1993, 7:34:58 PM9/20/93
to
>In article lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:
>>
>>Not necessarily. The US does not accept immigrants with criminal
>>records, so this group of Japanese-Amerocans will be less likely to
>>commit homicide than the general Japanese population.

Having grown up in California with Japanese-American friends in school,
in my neighborhood(s), and at work, I believe that the vast majority of
them were born here. (Manzanar, etc., to the contrary.) Most of them
second- or third-generation American citizens.

Unless the stats you speak of include only immigrant Japanese-Americans
(a pretty small group), U.S. immigration policy with regard to Japanese
has little or nothing to do with the difference in violent-crime rates
between Japanese and Japanese-Americans. Closer to nothing. (All the
stats I've seen refer primarily (if not completely) to American-born.)


--
"...Then anyone who leaves behind him a written manual, and likewise
anyone who receives it, in the belief that such writing will be clear
and certain, must be exceedingly simple-minded..." Plato, _Phaedrus_
-------------------------------------------------------

Tim Lambert

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Sep 21, 1993, 8:03:50 AM9/21/93
to
>>>>> On 20 Sep 1993 17:20:58 GMT, dl...@svale.hp.com (Danny Low) said:
> Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
> : > (Tim Lambert) writes:
> : > [...]
> : > |> Progunners have to reach into the third world and get their facts
> : > |> wrong for their comparisons -- Switzerland does not have more gun
> : > |> owners than the US (no matter whether you count total owners, percent
> : > |> owners, or militia guns as `owned').
> : Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew
> : and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
> : victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
> : countries. Handguns were present in 29% of US households.
> ^^^^^^^^
> : Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified
> : as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households
> : with any sort of gun.

> You are mixing "guns" and "handguns" in your postings. The difference
> between "guns" which includes handguns, rifles and shotguns and
> "handguns" is rather big. It changes the statistics totally. So
> which is which? As it stands, your intermixing of the two terms
> indicates you either ...

> 1. do not know what you are talking about or

No.

> 2. you are deliberately mixing the terms so you
> can use one set of statistics to fool people into
> thinking you are talking about another set of statistics or

No.

> 3. you are a very sloppy with your facts.

And no.

The correct answer is :
4. Danny Low did not read my posting before following up.

Tell me, Danny, what do you think this sentence means: "The US also had the


highest percentage of households with any sort of gun."

Tim

Tim Lambert

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Sep 21, 1993, 8:10:04 AM9/21/93
to
>>>>> On Mon, 20 Sep 1993 16:13:50 GMT, hamb...@sis.bms.com (Alfred A. Hambidge, Jr.) said:

> (Tim Lambert) writes:
>>
>>Not necessarily. The US does not accept immigrants with criminal

>>records, so this group of Japanese-Americans will be less likely to


>>commit homicide than the general Japanese population.

> Hmm. Does INS request a records check from the country of origin for
> every immigrant? If not, then this argument is meaningless.

The Canadian and Australian equivalents certainly do.

Tim

Tim Lambert

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Sep 21, 1993, 8:23:56 AM9/21/93
to
>>>>> On 20 Sep 1993 23:34:58 GMT, fid...@concertina.Eng.Sun.COM (steve hix) said:
>>(Tim Lambert) writes:
>>>
>>>Not necessarily. The US does not accept immigrants with criminal
>>>records, so this group of Japanese-Americans will be less likely to

>>>commit homicide than the general Japanese population.

> Having grown up in California with Japanese-American friends in school,
> in my neighborhood(s), and at work, I believe that the vast majority of
> them were born here. (Manzanar, etc., to the contrary.) Most of them
> second- or third-generation American citizens.

Which means that their parents or grandparents were immigrants.
Children with a criminal parent are much more likely to become
criminals themselves.

> Unless the stats you speak of include only immigrant Japanese-Americans
> (a pretty small group), U.S. immigration policy with regard to Japanese
> has little or nothing to do with the difference in violent-crime rates
> between Japanese and Japanese-Americans. Closer to nothing. (All the
> stats I've seen refer primarily (if not completely) to American-born.)

The stats in question include both US born and immigrants. What
percentage of Japanese-Americans are immigrants?

Tim

David Barton

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Sep 21, 1993, 9:41:55 AM9/21/93
to
In article <LAMBERT.93...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca>
lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:

Tell me, Danny, what do you think this sentence means: "The US also
had the highest percentage of households with any sort of gun."

It means you are using the quantitive comparison using handguns to
give the impression of a much greater difference in the proporation of
overall gun ownership than actually exists by binding it to the
qualitative statement.

A fairly common, if somewhat sleazy, tactic favored by those
politicians that like to pretend to use facts to bolster their
rhetoric.

Dave Barton
d...@wash.inmet.com

Alfred A. Hambidge, Jr.

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Sep 21, 1993, 10:05:04 AM9/21/93
to

That wasn't the question. The question is: Does the U.S. INS do a
records check?

Peter K. Boucher

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Sep 21, 1993, 11:48:24 AM9/21/93
to
In article LAMBERT.93...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca,

lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:
>Allow me to return the compliment -- you are one of the more
>entertaining anti's around here.

Below, you called me a progunner, above you call me an anti.
Are you confused?

>> (Tim Lambert) writes:
>> [...]
>> |> Progunners have to reach into the third world and get their facts

[...]

I forgot to mention, by taking a swipe at Mexico ("Progunners have
to reach into the third world..."), you help make my point, which
is that international comparisons of the type you seek to defend
are useless due to all the other uncontrolled factors affecting
the output. Thanks, Tim.

The point you're trying to make about Mexico (poverty creates
violence) applies just as well to the U.S. If you control for
race and economic standing, Canada is far more violent than the
U.S. Maybe if they made it easier for law-abiding citizens to
defend themselves, their criminals wouldn't be so bold.

>I wrote "no matter whether you count total owners, percent owners, or
>militia guns as `owned'". Is there something unclear about that
>statement?

You're right. I guess I misread it. You still haven't answered my
question about whether all Swiss males between 18 and (55?) are members
of the armed forces (or reserves), and as such keep firearms. Are they,
or aren't they? Why evade the question with reference to a study of
households with handguns that does not mention the ``assault rifles?''

>Not necessarily. The US does not accept immigrants with criminal

>records, so this group of Japanese-Amerocans will be less likely to


>commit homicide than the general Japanese population.

It wasn't referring to some group of Japanese-Americans. It
referred to all of them. But, still, you're saying that cultural
factors determine the homicide rate, and that gun availability
doesn't. Thanks for making my point, again, Tim.

>There are two different definitions of "Japanese" being used here --
>Japanese ancestry (note that a person can have multiple ancestries)
>and police ticking a box marked "Japanese" on an FBI form (what do
>they do if they don't know/care?).

Nice try at muddying the waters, Tim. These ``errors'' can only
serve to make my case stronger. Or, are you suggesting that, when
mixed racially with the rest of the U.S. population, the Japanese-
Americans become less violent? If so, what is your evidence for
this claim? If not, it's irrelevant, and you know it. You were
hoping that your readers wouldn't carefully analyze your argument,
and that they would think "Duh, yeah, Kleck's study was flawed,
duh." I'm glad to see that your debating style hasn't changed
during your months of absence. It's what I like about arguing
with you -- you always contradict yourself.

>The Japanese homicide rate is probably lower than that of Japanese
>Americans, but there is insufficient data to have any certainty.

The fact that you can't even convince your own prejudiced mind
serves to make my point a third time. Three strikes and you're
out, Tim. If gun availability determined the homicide rate, then
you would have easily been able to show that the Japanese homicide
rate is much lower than that of Japanese-Americans.

>Unlike you I do not make a habit of defending false claims. I believe
>that Switzerland manages to get within a factor of a hundred of the
>US.

As for your first sentence... Bwahahahahaaaaahaaaahahahahaaaaaa!
As for your swipe at Switzerland... You should think these things,
through before posting them, Tim. Why, with Switzerland's high
handgun homicide rate, it must be a very dangerous place to live,
when compared to such bastions of gun control as Britain and
Canada. Given that you consider such international comparisons to
be a valid source of information, can you explain why Switzerland
has so much less violent crime than either Canada or Britain?

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 21, 1993, 12:18:30 PM9/21/93
to
>>>>> On Tue, 21 Sep 1993 13:41:55 GMT, d...@fanny.wash.inmet.com (David Barton) said:
> Nntp-Posting-Host: fanny.wash

> (Tim Lambert) writes:

> Tell me, Danny, what do you think this sentence means: "The US also
> had the highest percentage of households with any sort of gun."

> It means you are using the quantitive comparison using handguns to
> give the impression of a much greater difference in the proporation of
> overall gun ownership than actually exists by binding it to the
> qualitative statement.

Wrong. The reference does not contain quantitive comparisons for all
guns, just for handguns. I wanted to make it clear that army guns
were counted in the percentages. No doubt if I had left out the
quantitative information you would have accused me furthering my
agenda by hiding facts.

> A fairly common, if somewhat sleazy, tactic favored by those
> politicians that like to pretend to use facts to bolster their
> rhetoric.

The sleazy tactics are yours. I suggest that in future you keep your
insinuations to yourself.

Tim

Stefan

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Sep 21, 1993, 12:09:00 PM9/21/93
to
>lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:
>>
>>Not necessarily. The US does not accept immigrants with criminal
>>records, so this group of Japanese-Amerocans will be less likely to
>>commit homicide than the general Japanese population.

I guess all the Marielitos(sp?) were fine upstanding Cubans ejected by
Castro for political reasons ;-)

**********************
* Is the line ready? *
**********************

Tim Lambert

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Sep 21, 1993, 3:17:26 PM9/21/93
to
>>>>> On 21 Sep 1993 10:48:24 -0500, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) said:
> In article LAMBERT.93...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca,

> (Tim Lambert) writes:
>>Allow me to return the compliment -- you are one of the more
>>entertaining anti's around here.

> Below, you called me a progunner, above you call me an anti.
> Are you confused?

No. Try to figure it out yourself.

>>> (Tim Lambert) writes:
>>> [...]
>>> |> Progunners have to reach into the third world and get their facts
> [...]

> I forgot to mention, by taking a swipe at Mexico ("Progunners have
> to reach into the third world..."), you help make my point, which
> is that international comparisons of the type you seek to defend
> are useless due to all the other uncontrolled factors affecting
> the output. Thanks, Tim.

> The point you're trying to make about Mexico (poverty creates
> violence) applies just as well to the U.S. If you control for
> race and economic standing, Canada is far more violent than the
> U.S. Maybe if they made it easier for law-abiding citizens to
> defend themselves, their criminals wouldn't be so bold.

Oh, really? Cite, please. (and don't cite Centerwall since his study
shows no such thing ). And I notice that your "point" about
international comparisons being useless suddenly gets forgotten as you
fall over youself claiming that guns cause the difference.

>>I wrote "no matter whether you count total owners, percent owners, or
>>militia guns as `owned'". Is there something unclear about that
>>statement?

> You're right. I guess I misread it. You still haven't answered my
> question about whether all Swiss males between 18 and (55?) are members
> of the armed forces (or reserves), and as such keep firearms. Are they,
> or aren't they? Why evade the question with reference to a study of
> households with handguns that does not mention the ``assault rifles?''

Read it again, Peter. "Army guns" are included and it states that the
US had the highest percentage of ownership of ALL guns.

>>Not necessarily. The US does not accept immigrants with criminal
>>records, so this group of Japanese-Amerocans will be less likely to
>>commit homicide than the general Japanese population.

> It wasn't referring to some group of Japanese-Americans. It
> referred to all of them.

I see. So if you claimed that all numbers less than 10 were composite
and I pointed out that 2, 3, 5, and 7 were primes less then 10 you
would reply "I wasn't referring to some set of numbers less than 10,
but to all of them." Fascinating.

> But, still, you're saying that cultural
> factors determine the homicide rate, and that gun availability
> doesn't. Thanks for making my point, again, Tim.

What a simple world you must live in, Peter! You reason: cultural
factors affect the homicide rate, therefore gun availability does not.
Have you considered that both might have an effect?

>>There are two different definitions of "Japanese" being used here --
>>Japanese ancestry (note that a person can have multiple ancestries)
>>and police ticking a box marked "Japanese" on an FBI form (what do
>>they do if they don't know/care?).

> Nice try at muddying the waters, Tim. These ``errors'' can only
> serve to make my case stronger.

I begin to understand now. You feel that the more errors you make the
stronger your case is, and that's why you make so many. :-)

> You were hoping that your readers wouldn't carefully analyze your
> argument, and that they would think "Duh, yeah, Kleck's study was
> flawed, duh."

Gosh yes. You claimed that the homicide rate in Japan was 2.4 times
higher than that for Japanese-Americans. You based your claim on
Kleck's study. I point out the methodological problems in the study and the
fact that Kleck got the Japanese homicide rate totally wrong. I think
"Kleck's study was flawed" rather understates the case.

> I'm glad to see that your debating style hasn't
> changed during your months of absence. It's what I like about
> arguing with you -- you always contradict yourself.

The contradictions are only in your mind.

>>The Japanese homicide rate is probably lower than that of Japanese
>>Americans, but there is insufficient data to have any certainty.

> The fact that you can't even convince your own prejudiced mind
> serves to make my point a third time. Three strikes and you're
> out, Tim. If gun availability determined the homicide rate, then
> you would have easily been able to show that the Japanese homicide
> rate is much lower than that of Japanese-Americans.

Gosh, all that energy spent beating up your strawman. You even missed
the strawman this time. The data is consistent with the
Japanes-American homicide rate being twice that of the Japanese.

>>Unlike you I do not make a habit of defending false claims. I believe
>>that Switzerland manages to get within a factor of a hundred of the
>>US.

> As for your first sentence... Bwahahahahaaaaahaaaahahahahaaaaaa!

Yes, I know, you think that your errors make your case stronger.

> As for your swipe at Switzerland... You should think these things,
> through before posting them, Tim. Why, with Switzerland's high
> handgun homicide rate, it must be a very dangerous place to live,
> when compared to such bastions of gun control as Britain and
> Canada. Given that you consider such international comparisons to
> be a valid source of information, can you explain why Switzerland
> has so much less violent crime than either Canada or Britain?

Switzerland has less violent crime than England, it also has almost
twice the homicide rate. That is, violence in Switzerland is far more
deadly. Hmmm.

Peter, you claimed that you could come up with international
comparisons that supported your position. I'm still waiting.

Tim


paul theodoropoulos

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Sep 21, 1993, 3:57:02 PM9/21/93
to


non-sequitur.

--
paul theodoropoulos p...@crl.com diog...@well.sf.ca.us

Peter K. Boucher

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Sep 21, 1993, 4:44:19 PM9/21/93
to
|> Oh, really? Cite, please. (and don't cite Centerwall since his study
|> shows no such thing ). [that controlled for racial and economic
disparities, Canada is far more violent than the U.S.]

Centerwall is consistent with the claim that Canada's homicide
rate equals the U.S. rate, when racial and economic distinctions
are controlled, but other forms of violent crime are far worse
there. Stuff that in your pipe, and smoke it, Tim. See [1]
through [24] for more information.

|> And I notice that your "point" about
|> international comparisons being useless suddenly gets forgotten as you
|> fall over youself claiming that guns cause the difference.

What have you been drinking? I've claimed that international
comparisons of homicide rate and gun ownership rate are irrelevant
to the discussion of whether the ownership rate affects the
homicide rate, because there are too many uncontrolled factors.
Everything you and I have said so far supports this premise. You
pick a lot of silly nits, but not one argument you've made refutes
the premise -- why the evasion, Tim?

Here's a clear and simple question for you, Tim. Has a gun law in
any of the countries you trumpet resulted in lower homicide rates,
when you compare the 5 years before the law was passed with the 5
years after? Why not?

|> Read it again, Peter. "Army guns" are included and it states that the
|> US had the highest percentage of ownership of ALL guns.

Yeah, yeah. Keep dodging, Tim. ``Assault rifles'' -- the choice of
gangs and drug dealers (NOT) -- who has more, Tim, U.S. households
or Swiss households? [Don't hold your breath waiting for a straight
answer from Tim.]

|> I see. So if you claimed that all numbers less than 10 were composite
|> and I pointed out that 2, 3, 5, and 7 were primes less then 10 you
|> would reply "I wasn't referring to some set of numbers less than 10,
|> but to all of them." Fascinating.

Your analogy is ludicrous. I said that Japan had a homicide rate 2.3
times higher than Japanese-Americans -- all Japanese-Americans. You
said "this group of Japanese-Amerocans will be less likely to commit
homicide than the general Japanese population" (thanks for backing me
up). I said that the study refers to all Japanese-Americans, not a
sub-group of them. Rather than make silly analogies, perhaps you can
explain to which sub-group of Japanese-Americans you were referring.

|> What a simple world you must live in, Peter! You reason: cultural
|> factors affect the homicide rate, therefore gun availability does not.
|> Have you considered that both might have an effect?

Nice strawman (with imbedded ad hominem :-)

I've not claimed that gun availability does not affect the homicide rate.
I've claimed that international comparisons of gun availability and
homicide rates do nothing to prove a causal relationship. Is this too
complex for you to grasp, Tim?

|> I begin to understand now. You feel that the more errors you make the
|> stronger your case is, and that's why you make so many. :-)

Speaking of living in a simple world... If an argument is based on
data that may err on the side of conservativism (that is, correction
of the errors could only make your case stronger), then your opponent
will only point out the potential errors if he/she is a) slow -- I
don't think you are, Tim, or b) he/she hopes the audience is slow --
this explains your arguments quite well, Tim.

Here's an analogy you should be able to follow. I claim that, based
on tests of the even numbers under 10, that there is AT LEAST one
prime number less than 10. You say, "your conclusion is flawed,
because you failed to check the odd numbers." You might try reading
these two paragraphs 3 or 4 times, to see if you can grasp the point.

|> Yes, I know, you think that your errors make your case stronger.

Make sure to read my previous 2 paragraphs 3 or 4 more times, Tim.

|> Switzerland has less violent crime than England, it also has almost
|> twice the homicide rate. That is, violence in Switzerland is far more
|> deadly. Hmmm.

Cite, please. I've been lead to believe that you've got the homicide
rate ratio reversed (i.e., Switzerland's homicide is less than half
England's).

|> Peter, you claimed that you could come up with international
|> comparisons that supported your position. I'm still waiting.

Perhaps you should read it again, Tim. I claimed that such
international comparisons are useless, and every argument you've
presented thus far backs me up. Thanks.

[1] David B. Kopel, "The Samurai, The Mountie, and The Cowboy:
Should America Adopt the Gun Controls of other Democracies",
(Premetheus Books, 1992)
[2] Juristat Service Bulletin Vol. 12 No 21, "Gender Differences
Among Violent Crime Victims", (Statistics Canada, Circulation
Centre for Justice Statistics, Nov. 1992) p.4
[3] Ibid, p.5, p.9
[4] Ibid, pp.8-9
[5] Robert J. Mundt, "Gun Control and Rates of Firearms Violence
in Canada and the United States", Canadian Journal of Criminology,
Vol. 32 No. 1 (Jan 1990), pp 137-154; and Paul Blackman,
"The Canadian Gun Law, Bill C-51: Its Effectiveness and Lessons
for Research on the Gun Control Issue", American Society
of Criminology, (Nov. 1984)
[6] Gary Kleck and Brett Patterson, "The Impact of Gun Control
and Gun Ownership on City Violence", (1989)
[7] David B. Kopel, op. cit., examined the effectiveness of the
firearms control policies of Japan, Canada, Britain, Switzerland,
Jamaica, Austraila, New Zealand, and the United States, from a
historical and sociological perspective. Additional source
references are: Gary Kleck and Brett Patterson, op. cit;
Joseph P. Magadin and Marshal Medoff, "An Empirical Analysis
of Federal and State Firearms Control Laws", (1984); Douglas R.
Murray, "Handguns, Gun Control Laws and Firearms Violence",
Social Problems, Vol. 23 (1975), Matthew R. Dezee, "Gun Control
Legislation: Impact and Ideology", Law and Policy Quarterly
Vol. 5 (1983), p.367; J. Killias, "Gun Ownership and Violent
Crime", Security Journal, Vol.1 No.3 (1990), p.171; Peter H.
Rossi and James D. Wright, "Weapons, Crimes, and Violence
in America: Executive Summary", (US Department of Justice, National
Institute of Justice, 1981); Solicitor General of Canada,
"Firearms Control in Canada: An Evaluation", (Ministry of Supply
and Services Canada, 1983); Don B. Kates Jr., "Restricting
Handguns: The Liberal Skeptics Speak Out", (North River Press, 1979);
and B. Bruce-Briggs, "The Great American Gun War", The Public
Interest, No. 45 (Fall 1976), pp. 37-62
[8] Juristat Service Bulletin Vol. 12 No.18, "Homicide in Canada 1991"
(Statistics Canada, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, Oct 1992)
p.2.
[9]Ibid, p.8
[10]Health Reports Vol. 1 No.1, "Mortality: Summary List of
Causes 1987", (Statistics Canada, Health Division, Oct. 1989), p.60.

[11] Health Reports Vol.1 No.1,"Causes of Death 1987", (Statistics
Canada, Health Division, Oct. 1989) pp, 176-178
[12] Neil Boyd, "The Last Dance: Murder in Canada", (Prentice-Hall
Canada, 1988) pp. 156-157
[13] Juristat Service Bulletin Vol.12 No.10, "Robbery in Canada",
(Statistics Canada, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, May 1992)
p.1, p.5.
[14] Ibid.,pp.1-4
[15] and Juristat Service Bulletin Vol.11 No.12, "Weapons and Violent
Crime",(Statistics Canada, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics,
Aug. 1991), p.12.
[16] Health Reports Vol.1 No.1 "Causes of Death 1987" (Statistics
Canada, Health Division, Oct. 1989), pp. 184-186
[17] Health Reports Vol.1 No.1 "Mortality: Summary List of Causes",
(Statistics Canada, Health Division, Oct. 1989), pp.54-58
[18] National Safety Council, "Accident Facts 1988-1991".
[19] Juristat Service Bulletin, Vol.12 No. 18, op. cit. pp 13-14
[20] Juristat Service Bulletin, Vol. 9 No. 1, (Statistics Canada,
Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, 1989)
[21] Statistics Canada, "1992 Yearbook", (Statistics Canada,1991),
p.255-257
[22] Juristat Service Bulletin Vol.12 No.18, op.cit., p.15.
[23] D. Owen Carrigan, "Crime and Punishment in Canada: A History",
(McClelland and Steward, Inc., 1991) p.396
[24] James D. Wright and Peter H. Rossi, "The Armed Criminal in
America: A Survey of Incarcerated Felons", (US Department of
Justice, National Institute of Justice, 1985); and, James D. Wright
and Peter H. Rossi, "Armed and Considered Dangerous, (NY: Aldin
de Gruyler, 1986)

Danny Low

unread,
Sep 21, 1993, 2:42:36 PM9/21/93
to
Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
: The correct answer is :

: 4. Danny Low did not read my posting before following up.
: Tell me, Danny, what do you think this sentence means: "The US also had the
: highest percentage of households with any sort of gun."

YOUR problem is I did read the ENTIRE posting and the above statement
is out of context. Within the context of your ENTIRE posting you
are refering to BOTH handguns and guns without indicating whether
your statistics refer to one, the other or both. You were throwing
out SEVERAL statistics, not just the ONE quoted above. You were
quoting statistics on handguns and guns as if they refer to the
same thing. The statistics are very different and the conclusions
that can be legitimately drawn are very different based on those
numbers. So which is which? Do you want to explain or do you
just want to flame?

Jim De Arras

unread,
Sep 21, 1993, 9:45:33 PM9/21/93
to
> >>>>> On Tue, 21 Sep 1993 13:41:55 GMT, d...@fanny.wash.inmet.com (David
Barton) said:
[...]

> > A fairly common, if somewhat sleazy, tactic favored by those
> > politicians that like to pretend to use facts to bolster their
> > rhetoric.
>
> The sleazy tactics are yours. I suggest that in future you keep your
> insinuations to yourself.
>

If it'll make you feel better, I also agree with David. You are becoming
Master of Sleaze in t.p.g, in that you are apparently bright, but chose to
operate at the level of ignorance of a Brandon.

> Tim

Jim
--
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jim De Arras - WA4ONG | "Government is not reason; it is not eloquence;
NRA-ILA, GOA, CCRKBA, | it is a force. Like fire, it is a dangerous
GSSF, VSRRA | servant and a fearful master."
j...@handheld.com | -- George Washington

Charles Scripter

unread,
Sep 22, 1993, 2:00:26 AM9/22/93
to
[posted only to t.p.g. as ca.politics is invalid at my site]

On 20 Sep 1993 17:20:58 GMT, Danny Low (dl...@svale.hp.com) wrote:

> Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
> : > (Tim Lambert) writes:
> : > [...]
> : > |> Progunners have to reach into the third world and get their facts
> : > |> wrong for their comparisons -- Switzerland does not have more gun
> : > |> owners than the US (no matter whether you count total owners, percent
> : > |> owners, or militia guns as `owned').

Tell me Tim, how many firearm _owners_ are there in the US? Not how
many firearms exist, or how many households contain them. If you
cannot substantiate the above claim, then I must conclude you are
misrepresenting the facts.

> : Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew
> : and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
> : victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
> : countries. Handguns were present in 29% of US households.
> ^^^^^^^^
> : Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified
> : as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households
> : with any sort of gun.

Therefore Lambert concludes?.... What Tim?

Tim also sez (to Peter):

TL> Unlike you I do not make a habit of defending false claims.

Is your nose growing, Tim?... ;-)

TL> I believe that Switzerland manages to get within a factor of a
TL> hundred of the US.

Aha! So Lambert's confusing claims that 29% of US homes have
handguns, and Switzerland being 2nd with 14% (handguns, or all
firearms, Tim?), logically implies that Switzerland "manages to get
within a factor of a hundred of the US." for murders??...

I must have missed your alleged correlation here, Tim.

> 1. do not know what you are talking about or
> 2. you are deliberately mixing the terms so you
> can use one set of statistics to fool people into

This is Lambert's favorite tactic. Expect to see it often.

> thinking you are talking about another set of statistics or
> 3. you are a very sloppy with your facts.

Answer: 1, 2 and 3

Gee, Tim... You've only just come back, and you've already been
found out...

>>>From: lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert)
^^^^^^^^^^^^
Tell me Tim, if you're so concerned about crime rates in the US, why
did you migrate from Australia to Canada. After all, it so close to
the US...

--
Charles Scripter * cesc...@phy.mtu.edu
Dept of Physics, Michigan Tech, Houghton, MI 49931
-------------------------------------------------------------
"... God forbid we should ever be twenty years without such a
rebellion. The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The
part which is wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the
importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under
such misconceptions, it is lethargy, the forerunner of death to the
public liberty." Thomas Jefferson, Nov. 13, 1787

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 22, 1993, 9:55:25 AM9/22/93
to
>>>>> On 21 Sep 1993 18:42:36 GMT, dl...@svale.hp.com (Danny Low) said:

> Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
> : The correct answer is :
> : 4. Danny Low did not read my posting before following up.
> : Tell me, Danny, what do you think this sentence means: "The US also had the
> : highest percentage of households with any sort of gun."

> YOUR problem is I did read the ENTIRE posting and the above statement
> is out of context. Within the context of your ENTIRE posting you
> are refering to BOTH handguns and guns without indicating whether
> your statistics refer to one, the other or both. You were throwing
> out SEVERAL statistics, not just the ONE quoted above. You were
> quoting statistics on handguns and guns as if they refer to the
> same thing.

In case anyone cares, here is the passage that has given Danny such
difficulty:

>> Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew
>> and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
>> victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
>> countries. Handguns were present in 29% of US households.

>> Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified

>> as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households


>> with any sort of gun.

Sentence 1 gives the source of the information. Sentence 2 tells you
how the information was gathered. Sentence 3 tells you about
handguns. Sentence 4 tells you about all guns.

Danny, if you are still having difficulties, I suggest you consult the
source of the information.

Tim

Steve Kao

unread,
Sep 22, 1993, 1:37:53 PM9/22/93
to
Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
> Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew
> and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
> victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
> countries. Handguns were present in 29% of US households.
> Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified
> as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households
> with any sort of gun.

Perhaps someone from Switzerland can enlighten us. Are not all males
between the ages of 18 and 55 issued rifles? I would guess that >90% of
the households in Switzerland have males between the ages of 18 and 55
in them, implying that >90% of the households have a gun in them. I
doubt if >90% of the households in the US have a gun in them.

- Steve Kao

Danny Low

unread,
Sep 22, 1993, 7:39:45 PM9/22/93
to
Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
: In case anyone cares, here is the passage that has given Danny such
: difficulty:

: >> Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew
: >> and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
: >> victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
: >> countries. Handguns were present in 29% of US households.
: >> Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified
: >> as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households
: >> with any sort of gun.
: Sentence 1 gives the source of the information. Sentence 2 tells you
: how the information was gathered. Sentence 3 tells you about
: handguns. Sentence 4 tells you about all guns.

I will look up the reference BUT I have two questions just in case
I cannot find a copy.

1. The last time I looked at an atlas, the world included places like
Mexico and other Latin American countries. The book has a rather
grandiose title "across the World" but seems to exclude most of
the world. Are the countries you listed the only ones in the
book? If it is so I would consider the sample to be very biased.

2. It is a survey of victimization. So what are the victimization
rates and how well do they correlate with gun ownership?
You should have 14 sample points to do a correlation analysis.

Danny Low

unread,
Sep 22, 1993, 8:04:22 PM9/22/93
to
Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
: >> Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified

: >> as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households
: >> with any sort of gun.
: Sentence 1 gives the source of the information. Sentence 2 tells you
: how the information was gathered. Sentence 3 tells you about
: handguns. Sentence 4 tells you about all guns.

One final question just in case I cannot get a copy of the book.

The last two sentences seems common nonsensical. All able bodied
males between 18 and 50 in Switzerland are members of the
militia and are required to keep small arms in their homes
with a standard ammo load. This includes both rifles and pistols
depending on the man's rank and function in the militia.

The most commonly cited number for the USA is 50% of the households
have a gun of any type. Your two sentences imply that even with
universal militia duty, less than 50% of the households in
Switzerland have a male in it who is between 18 and 50 years old.
Common sense says this is not the case. What is the percentage
in the book for households in the USA with guns? You do not mention
any number. I would find any number significantly greater than 50%
suspicious as that is the number I have seen cited the most by
the gun control advocates and that is a number they would
exaggerate not minimize.

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 24, 1993, 3:57:28 AM9/24/93
to
>>>>> On 22 Sep 1993 17:37:53 GMT, k...@hprnd.rose.hp.com (Steve Kao) said:
> Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
>> Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew
>> and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
>> victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
>> countries. Handguns were present in 29% of US households.
>> Switzerland was second with 14% (about half of these were identified
>> as army guns). The US also had the highest percentage of households
>> with any sort of gun.

> Perhaps someone from Switzerland can enlighten us. Are not all males
> between the ages of 18 and 55 issued rifles?

No. All male Swiss citizens between 20 and 50 who are in the army are
issued rifles. Roughly 15% of Swiss residents are not citizens, and
20% of the citizens called up do not serve in the army. So, very
roughly, that's (50-20)/70*.8*.85 = 15% of the population.

> I would guess that >90% of
> the households in Switzerland have males between the ages of 18 and 55
> in them, implying that >90% of the households have a gun in them.

In the Encyclopedia of the First World, I found the following
information:

Pop of Switzerland: 6,800,000
Average household size: 2.5
Size of Swiss army: 625,000

There are therefore 6,800,000/2.5=2,700,000 households in Switzerland.
The percentage of households containing a soldier is at most
625,000/2,700,000=23%. (Possibly less if some households have more
than one soldier.)

> I doubt if >90% of the households in the US have a gun in them.

Correct, it's about 50%.

Tim

Peter K. Boucher

unread,
Sep 24, 1993, 12:21:40 PM9/24/93
to
|> >>>>> On 22 Sep 1993 17:37:53 GMT, k...@hprnd.rose.hp.com (Steve Kao) said:
|> > Perhaps someone from Switzerland can enlighten us. Are not all males
|> > between the ages of 18 and 55 issued rifles?
|>
|> No. All male Swiss citizens between 20 and 50 who are in the army are
|> issued rifles. Roughly 15% of Swiss residents are not citizens, and
|> 20% of the citizens called up do not serve in the army. So, very
|> roughly, that's (50-20)/70*.8*.85 = 15% of the population.

Buy a calculator, Tim. It's 29.142857% of the population. So, which
is it, Tim, are you innumerate or deceitful?

|> In the Encyclopedia of the First World, I found the following
|> information:
|>
|> Pop of Switzerland: 6,800,000
|> Average household size: 2.5
|> Size of Swiss army: 625,000
|>
|> There are therefore 6,800,000/2.5=2,700,000 households in Switzerland.
|> The percentage of households containing a soldier is at most
|> 625,000/2,700,000=23%. (Possibly less if some households have more
|> than one soldier.)

Tim, Tim, Tim... Tssk, tssk. If you were going to try this trick,
you shouldn't have included the one above with the math errors.
You're trying to mix terms here. Let's apply the fraction you
supplied above to the numbers you quote here. 29.142857% of
6,800,000 is 1,981,714.3 soldiers. 1,981,714.3 soldiers in
2,700,000 households means there may be a soldier in as many as
73.396825% of Swiss households. Of course, this is the upper
limit. Don't quote it, though, because it's based on unverified
data from a very untrustworthy source (Tim).

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 26, 1993, 10:57:04 AM9/26/93
to
>>>>> On 21 Sep 1993 15:44:19 -0500, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) said:
> (Tim Lambert) writes:
> |> Oh, really? Cite, please. (and don't cite Centerwall since his study
> |> shows no such thing ). [that controlled for racial and economic
> disparities, Canada is far more violent than the U.S.]

> Centerwall is consistent with the claim that Canada's homicide
> rate equals the U.S. rate, when racial and economic distinctions
> are controlled, but other forms of violent crime are far worse
> there.

Rubbish. You obviously have not even read the abstract of his paper.

> See [1] through [24] for more information.

Do any of these show [that controlled for racial and economic
> disparities, Canada is far more violent than the U.S.]??

> |> And I notice that your "point" about
> |> international comparisons being useless suddenly gets forgotten as you
> |> fall over youself claiming that guns cause the difference.

> I've claimed that international


> comparisons of homicide rate and gun ownership rate are irrelevant
> to the discussion of whether the ownership rate affects the
> homicide rate, because there are too many uncontrolled factors.

And then you opined that the claimed greater violence in Canada was
because Canadians could not defend themeselves with guns.

> Here's a clear and simple question for you, Tim. Has a gun law in
> any of the countries you trumpet resulted in lower homicide rates,
> when you compare the 5 years before the law was passed with the 5
> years after? Why not?

All the countries in this discussion have been introduced by you.
Let's see, you mentioned Canada. Gun law in 78.
Homicide rate (per 100,000 population)
73-78 2.7 3.1 2.9 3.0 2.8 average 2.9
79-83 2.7 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.7 average 2.6
(a t test on the statisitical significance of the difference of the
means gives p=.01)
The US homicide rate for 73-78 averaged 9.2, for 79-83 it averaged 9.4.

You can find these statisitcs in one of your 24 cites, Peter.

> |> Read it again, Peter. "Army guns" are included and it states that the
> |> US had the highest percentage of ownership of ALL guns.

> Yeah, yeah. Keep dodging, Tim. ``Assault rifles'' -- the choice of
> gangs and drug dealers (NOT) -- who has more, Tim, U.S. households
> or Swiss households? [Don't hold your breath waiting for a straight
> answer from Tim.]

Swiss households. Were you aware that there are other sorts of guns
besides assault rifles?

> I've not claimed that gun availability does not affect the homicide rate.
> I've claimed that international comparisons of gun availability and
> homicide rates do nothing to prove a causal relationship.

And gone on to claim that you can make international comparisons to
support your position, to wit:
US vs Mexico
US vs Switzerland
Japan vs Japanese-Americans
US vs Canada
Switzerland vs England

Only the first one supports your position. You got all the other ones
wrong. Why is it so hard for you to come up with First World examples?

> |> I begin to understand now. You feel that the more errors you make the
> |> stronger your case is, and that's why you make so many. :-)

> Speaking of living in a simple world... If an argument is based on
> data that may err on the side of conservativism (that is, correction
> of the errors could only make your case stronger), then your opponent
> will only point out the potential errors if he/she is a) slow -- I
> don't think you are, Tim, or b) he/she hopes the audience is slow --
> this explains your arguments quite well, Tim.

Let's see, you argue that Japanese have a homicide rate 2.3 times
greater than Japanese-Americans. If we correct the errors (most notably, a
massive overstatement of the Japanese homicide rate) it may well be
that Japanese have half the homicide rate of Japenese-Americans.
Exactly how does this make your case stronger?

> |> Switzerland has less violent crime than England, it also has almost
> |> twice the homicide rate. That is, violence in Switzerland is far more
> |> deadly. Hmmm.

> Cite, please. I've been lead to believe that you've got the homicide
> rate ratio reversed (i.e., Switzerland's homicide is less than half
> England's).

World Health Organization Statistical Yearbook.

Tim

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 26, 1993, 12:11:28 PM9/26/93
to
>>>>> On 24 Sep 1993 11:21:40 -0500, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) said:
> (Tim Lambert) writes:
> |> (Steve Kao) said:
> |> > Perhaps someone from Switzerland can enlighten us. Are not all males
> |> > between the ages of 18 and 55 issued rifles?
> |>
> |> No. All male Swiss citizens between 20 and 50 who are in the army are
> |> issued rifles. Roughly 15% of Swiss residents are not citizens, and
> |> 20% of the citizens called up do not serve in the army. So, very
> |> roughly, that's (50-20)/70*.8*.85 = 15% of the population.

> Buy a calculator, Tim. It's 29.142857% of the population. So, which
> is it, Tim, are you innumerate or deceitful?

Neither. When typing in the above calaculation I left out the .5
factor for the fact that 50% of Swiss citizens are male. The
calculation should read "(50-20)/70*.8*.85*.5 = 15% of the
population". The actual size of the army is 625,000, which is 9% of
the population. Presumably, while 80% of 20 year olds are fit to
serve, the percentage declines with age, and of course I have only
very roughly estimated the percentage of male citizens between 20 and
50.

> supplied above to the numbers you quote here. 29.142857% of
> 6,800,000 is 1,981,714.3 soldiers. 1,981,714.3 soldiers in
> 2,700,000 households means there may be a soldier in as many as
> 73.396825% of Swiss households.

(Got to love those 8 significant digits!)

Apparently my omission convinced Peter that the population of
Switzerland was 100% male.

Peter, the population of Switzerland is roughly 50% male, as it is in
most places. My apologies for causing such confusion in your mind.

Tim

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 26, 1993, 1:24:11 PM9/26/93
to
>>>>> On 22 Sep 1993 23:39:45 GMT, dl...@svale.hp.com (Danny Low) said:
> Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
> : >> Look in "Experiences of Crime across the World" van Dijk, Mayhew
> : >> and Killias (1991). This reports the result of an international
> : >> victimisation survey in the US, Canada, Australia and 11 European
> : >> countries.

> 1. The last time I looked at an atlas, the world included places like


> Mexico and other Latin American countries. The book has a rather
> grandiose title "across the World" but seems to exclude most of
> the world. Are the countries you listed the only ones in the
> book? If it is so I would consider the sample to be very biased.

The only countries. They also surveyed Warsaw and Surabaja. Lack of
money and a large percentage of population without telephones makes
national surveys difficult in second and third world nations.

> 2. It is a survey of victimization. So what are the victimization
> rates and how well do they correlate with gun ownership?
> You should have 14 sample points to do a correlation analysis.

hand all
gun% gun% A/T SA Rob Bur Homicide
England & Wales 0.5 4.7 5.3 3.4 1.9 9.4 0.7
Scotland 0.5 5.3 2.9 1.8 9.0 1.8
Northern Ireland 1.5 4.3 3.3 1.5 4.7 5.2
Netherlands 1.0 2.0 9.3 6.4 2.0 8.9 0.9
West Germany 6.5 9.2 9.3 7.9 3.0 4.7 1.2
Switzerland 14.0 32.6 3.9 5.5 2.2 4.0 1.2
Belgium 6.0 16.8 6.4 4.9 4.0 7.7 1.8
France 5.5 24.7 7.1 4.3 2.9 10.4 1.2
Spain 2.0 7.5 6.8 9.1 5.6 1.0
Norway 3.5 31.2 8.2 4.7 1.5 3.2 1.2
Finland 7.0 25.5 9.7 4.3 2.7 2.0 2.9
USA 29.0 48.9 12.7 10.4 5.5 13.7 8.8
Canada 4.0 30.8 8.8 10.0 2.6 10.2 2.1
Australia 2.0 20.1 11.6 13.5 2.3 16.6 2.0

Key:
hand gun% is the percentage of households reporting hand gun ownership
all gun% is the percentage of households reporting any gun ownership
(The all gun% numbers do not all appear in the book -- I was emailed them,
but I think they come from the survey. The reference is Security
Journal 1(3):169-174, which I have not been able to check out.)
A/T is percentage victim of assault or threats in the past five years.
SA is the percentage of women victim of sexual assaults or offensive
behaviour in the past five years.
Rob is percentage victim of robbery in the past five years.
Bur is percentage victim of successful burglary in the past five years.
Homicide is the average homicide rate (per 100,000 population) 82-88,
from the World Health Organization Statistical Yearbook.

What would you like to do with this data?

Tim

paul theodoropoulos

unread,
Sep 26, 1993, 2:11:59 PM9/26/93
to
lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:

>What would you like to do with this data?

gee, for one thing, i'd like to see a useful measure rather than
strictly ownership numbers. what a lot of poppycock. the survey would
be just as valuable if it measured percent of all households with
VCR's and percent of all households with Stereo VCR's, and their
various violent crime rates.

if we are trying to demonstrate that a particular weapon is
responsible for the violent crime rates in a particular country, then
the more informative measure is to compare violent crime rates with
various weapons against each country. e.g

hand all "carry" all knife gun
gun% gun% knife% knife% robbery Robbery
country1
country2
etc

hand all "carry" all knife gun
gun% gun% knife% knife% Homicide Homicide
country1
country2
etc

since we know that the murder rate in the u.s. using knives is many
times that in other countries, perhaps we can begin concerning
ourselves with social and cultural differences, rather than blaming
any one type of weapon for all our problems.

also, keeping in mind that the preponderance of violent crime in the
US is committed by repeat offenders, perhaps we might ask ourselves
which would be easier to implement and have a quicker salutory effect:
banning guns, or "banning" repeat offenders (by not letting them
repeat).

i think the answer to that is pretty much a no-brainer.

Peter K. Boucher

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 5:16:21 PM9/27/93
to
|> And then you opined that the claimed greater violence in Canada was
|> because Canadians could not defend themeselves with guns.

You seem to be having a problem understanding how I could think that
making it easier for honest Canadians to defend themselves would lead
to reduced crime, while I at the same time claim that cross-national
comparisons attempting to find a bivariate association between gun
ownership and the homicide rate are useless. I assume that you can
see that these are two separate issues, so why pretend otherwise?

|> All the countries in this discussion have been introduced by you.
|> Let's see, you mentioned Canada. Gun law in 78.
|> Homicide rate (per 100,000 population)
|> 73-78 2.7 3.1 2.9 3.0 2.8 average 2.9
|> 79-83 2.7 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.7 average 2.6
|> (a t test on the statisitical significance of the difference of the
|> means gives p=.01)
|> The US homicide rate for 73-78 averaged 9.2, for 79-83 it averaged 9.4.

The Canadian homicide rate had already been in decline, and the passage
of the gun law did not affect the rate of decline. I assume that you
already knew this, Tim, so why cite this useless data?

|> Swiss households. Were you aware that there are other sorts of guns
|> besides assault rifles?

Hallelujiah! So, Tim, on an unrelated note, do you think that ``assault
weapons'' should be banned?

|> > I've not claimed that gun availability does not affect the homicide rate.
|> > I've claimed that international comparisons of gun availability and
|> > homicide rates do nothing to prove a causal relationship.
|>
|> And gone on to claim that you can make international comparisons to
|> support your position, to wit:

No! I've said that comparisons can be made on both sides, but both are
invalid, because this type of comparison is invalid. Your attempts to
show that such comparisons are invalid when used to suppport the claim
that gun ownership lowers crime do nothing to refute my point. What
part of this are you having trouble understanding, Tim?

Jon Buck

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 5:22:30 PM9/27/93
to
Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:

> > Perhaps someone from Switzerland can enlighten us. Are not all males
> > between the ages of 18 and 55 issued rifles?

> No. All male Swiss citizens between 20 and 50 who are in the army are
> issued rifles. Roughly 15% of Swiss residents are not citizens, and
> 20% of the citizens called up do not serve in the army. So, very
> roughly, that's (50-20)/70*.8*.85 = 15% of the population.

Woops. The problem with the above statement (and the calculation
below) is the phrase "in the army". Unless my understanding is
mistaken, Swiss males who have completed army service are issued with
a rifle to keep in their homes; note that these men are _not_ in the
army, but are members of local militias. This will become important
in a minute; read on.

> > I would guess that >90% of
> > the households in Switzerland have males between the ages of 18 and 55
> > in them, implying that >90% of the households have a gun in them.

> In the Encyclopedia of the First World, I found the following
> information:

> Pop of Switzerland: 6,800,000
> Average household size: 2.5
> Size of Swiss army: 625,000
> There are therefore 6,800,000/2.5=2,700,000 households in Switzerland.
> The percentage of households containing a soldier is at most
> 625,000/2,700,000=23%. (Possibly less if some households have more
> than one soldier.)

If my statement above is true, and I believe it is, the number of
households which have a gun in them (a military assault rifle, to
boot) is somewhat higher than the number of households containing an
active soldier (what do you suppose the number of households
containing a male between the ages of 18 and 55 is?). Note that if we
use your 15% figure for males 20-50 who are qualified to be issued
rifles, as calculated above, the correct number of households is
1,020,000/2,700,000 = 38%. Using the age range 18-55, which is the
range I have seen used more often, the number of households grows to
45%; a lot closer to the U.S. rate. This is without questioning your
assertion that 20% of those called up do not serve in the military;
what is your basis for this assertion?

- Jon

Peter K. Boucher

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 5:35:41 PM9/27/93
to
|> > supplied above to the numbers you quote here. 29.142857% of
|> > 6,800,000 is 1,981,714.3 soldiers. 1,981,714.3 soldiers in
|> > 2,700,000 households means there may be a soldier in as many as
|> > 73.396825% of Swiss households.
|>
|> (Got to love those 8 significant digits!)

I use xcalc, Tim, which allows me to paste the results of a
calculation into my responses to you with the click of a mouse
button. If seeing all those numbers in one place confuses you,
Tim, I could take the trouble to round the numbers off.

|> Apparently my omission convinced Peter that the population of
|> Switzerland was 100% male.

I love it. Tim posts faulty data, and if you point it out to him,
he implies that you're foolish for not identifying the source of
his errors.

Tim, if we cut the number in half, you still get 36.698413% (37%
for you, Tim) of Swiss households, based on your own calculations,
with a member of the armed forces living in them. Of course, this
number is low because it doesn't count households that have a
female member of the armed services, but it's still significantly
higher than your other estimate of 23%, Tim. And, of course, only
members of the armed forces can own firearms in Switzerland. Right,

Bao Dinh Nguyen

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 4:49:38 PM9/27/93
to

Paul,

If you think about it, you will find that, in fact, liberals have no
brains.

Bao


Danny Low

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 7:05:54 PM9/27/93
to
From: lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert)

>The only countries. They also surveyed Warsaw and Surabaja. Lack of
>money and a large percentage of population without telephones makes
>national surveys difficult in second and third world nations.

Despite its title, the survey is not very worldwide if it is limited
to the cited countries. It is also an invalid sample for comparing
with the USA as a significant set (the Latin American countries) are
excluded. As I have stated many times before, the southwest
USA (and this includes California) has more in common with the Latin
American countries than it has with the western European countries.
If you want to examine cultural attitudes towards violence in the USA
then you must include the Latin American countries in the sample.
The Latin American countries generally have gun controls as strict as
the cited countries.

>
> hand all
> gun% gun% A/T SA Rob Bur Homicide

> Switzerland 14.0 32.6 3.9 5.5 2.2 4.0 1.2

> USA 29.0 48.9 12.7 10.4 5.5 13.7 8.8
>

>Key:
>hand gun% is the percentage of households reporting hand gun ownership
>all gun% is the percentage of households reporting any gun ownership

The Swiss number is not credible with me due to universal militia duty.
It might be explainable if the survey was ONLY on PRIVATELY owned guns.
The rifles issued to the militia are GOVERNMENT property and the Swiss
polled could legitimately claim no private guns in the house even though
they have an assault rifle in their closet. I recall the handgun number
includes military weapons for the Swiss but I also believe the Swiss
follow old European military tradition and require their officers
purchase their handguns so they would be counted in the survey.

The biggest flaw in the statistics is it does not seem to try to
account for ILLEGALLY owned guns. Colin Greenwood in his study of
the UK found the number of illegally owned guns exceeded the legal
number by a significant amount.

However given the statistics the correlation coefficients are:

Assault Sexual assault Homicide

Handguns 0.31 0.24 0.88
All Guns 0.28 0.28 0.71

If there was a relationship between violence and guns then the
correlation should have been high in all three categories.
What the correlation shows is that if someone really wanted to
kill someone, a gun is a highly effective. However as the Kleck's
study and the California Attorney General's study both show, that
same killing effectiveness also makes a gun an excellent NONVIOLENT
method of defense. Only someone crazy or hyped up on drugs would
attack someone with a gun.

The problem with the above correlation is it does NOT take into
account whether an assault was conducted with a gun or not as that data
is not available. The statistics also do not take into account the
TOTAL legal and illegal guns in a country. If the number of illegal
guns is far greater than legal guns as it is in the UK then the
numbers are very unreliable. In many countries with strict gun control
there is nevertheless a very large pool of illegal guns. This renders
any poll of guns invalid. Common sense says that a very large
number of the people polled who illegally own their guns are not
going to admit to having any guns.

Peter K. Boucher

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 7:37:23 PM9/27/93
to
|> > |> Switzerland has less violent crime than England, it also has almost
|> > |> twice the homicide rate. That is, violence in Switzerland is far more
|> > |> deadly. Hmmm.
|>
|> > Cite, please. I've been lead to believe that you've got the homicide
|> > rate ratio reversed (i.e., Switzerland's homicide is less than half
|> > England's).
|>
|> World Health Organization Statistical Yearbook.

In <LAMBERT.93...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca>,


lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:
|> England & Wales 0.5 4.7 5.3 3.4 1.9 9.4 0.7
|> Scotland 0.5 5.3 2.9 1.8 9.0 1.8
|> Northern Ireland 1.5 4.3 3.3 1.5 4.7 5.2

[...]


|> Switzerland 14.0 32.6 3.9 5.5 2.2 4.0 1.2

I see the source of our miscommunication. I was thinking of the combined
rate for the UK, while Tim was considering England & Wales as separate
from Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Tell me something, Tim. You claim that cross-country comparisons of gun
ownership and homicide rate show that gun-control reduces violence. So,
what do you see when you compare Switzerland with Scotland, Northern Ireland,
Belgium, Finland, Canada, or Australia?

C. D. Tavares

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 10:09:34 PM9/27/93
to
In article <930927233...@redwood.csl.sri.com>, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) writes:

> I see the source of our miscommunication. I was thinking of the combined
> rate for the UK, while Tim was considering England & Wales as separate
> from Scotland and Northern Ireland.

> Tell me something, Tim. You claim that cross-country comparisons of gun
> ownership and homicide rate show that gun-control reduces violence. So,
> what do you see when you compare Switzerland with Scotland, Northern Ireland,
> Belgium, Finland, Canada, or Australia?

More to the point, if you're going to consider England and Wales separate
"countries" from Northern Ireland, what do you see when you compare THEM?
--

c...@rocket.sw.stratus.com --If you believe that I speak for my company,
OR c...@vos.stratus.com write today for my special Investors' Packet...

HENRY E SCHAFFER

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 8:38:42 PM9/27/93
to
In article <1993Sep27....@math.ucla.edu> (some idiot) writes:
> ...

>If you think about it, you will find that, in fact, liberals have no
>brains.

I left out the name because this isn't the only post that expresses
this sentiment. But I have a question for all of you staunchly
conservative (or should I say 'flaming right-winger') pro-RKBA types.

Which is more important to you, Preserving the RKBA or saying nasty
things about liberals?

Are you really so anti-liberal that you are willing to turn away all
the liberals who are working for the rkba?

If so, you are (IMHO) an idiot.

--henry schaffer

paul theodoropoulos

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 9:32:44 PM9/27/93
to
b...@oak.math.ucla.edu (Bao Dinh Nguyen) writes:
>In article <284m1f$1...@crl.crl.com> p...@crl.com writes:
>>i think the answer to that is pretty much a no-brainer.
>>paul theodoropoulos p...@crl.com diog...@well.sf.ca.us

>Paul,
>If you think about it, you will find that, in fact, liberals have no
>brains.

being essentially a liberal myself - albeit one who recognizes the right
to keep and bear arms - i have to take exception with that.

%^)

Thomas Grant Edwards

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 10:46:57 PM9/27/93
to
>>>>>> On 21 Sep 1993 15:44:19 -0500, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) said:
>> Here's a clear and simple question for you, Tim. Has a gun law in
>> any of the countries you trumpet resulted in lower homicide rates,
>> when you compare the 5 years before the law was passed with the 5
>> years after? Why not?

>All the countries in this discussion have been introduced by you.
>Let's see, you mentioned Canada. Gun law in 78.
>Homicide rate (per 100,000 population)
>73-78 2.7 3.1 2.9 3.0 2.8 average 2.9
>79-83 2.7 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.7 average 2.6
>(a t test on the statisitical significance of the difference of the
>means gives p=.01)

From "Gun Control and Rates of Firearm Violence
in Canada and the United States" by R.J. Mundt, in _Canadian_
Journal_of_Criminology_, Jan. 1990, p. 137:

"The mean rate [of homicide] for Canada from 1974-1978 was 2.7,
compared to a post-1978 rate (through 1988) of 2.6. One could
admit the possibility that this decline resulted from the 1977
legislation, except that the mean rates for the United States
in the same periods dropped from 9.2 to 8.9, and almost identical
drop."

The point is that there wasn't an amazing decrease in Canadian
murder rates. By 1985, the murder rate was back up where it was
before C-51. You can use a t-test to show that the average rate over
many years is different, but if we still get years where the
rate is high, it doesn't make a hill of beans to the dead people.

Of course, here is the big kicker in Canada: Let's say you do
believe that the pre-1977 murder rates are more than the
post-1977 murder rates enough to make it worth your while.

"...there are now 1,275,000 more firearms in private ownership
in Canada than when the Act was passed -- about 11,960,000, or
46,000 per 100,000 population."

"The stock of restricted weapons (almost all handguns) increased
from an estimated 651,000 in 1976 to 923,000 in 1988 (based on the
total number of restricted weapons registered with and reported by
the RCMP."

So whether or not you believe murder went up, guns certainly did.
Does this mean that Canada is safer today because there are more
guns? It definately means the direct aims of C-51 (to reduce the number of
guns) has failed.

Conclusions:

"When compared with the United States, trends in Canada over the
past ten years in various types of violent crime, suicide, and
accidental death show no dramatic results, and few suggestions
of perceptible effects of the 1977 Canadian gun control
legislation. This is scarcely spurising, except that expectations
were high among the policy formulators, and some evaluations
perhaps tried too hard to give them satisfaction. The decrease
in use of firearms in robbery appears to be the only change
that stands out over time or in comparison with parallel trends
in the United States."

"This focus on explaining change in firearm-related violence has not
shown dramatic results, but also suggests that the stock of firearms
in general and handguns in particular have grown somewhat since
implementation of the 1977 ammendments. "

-Thomas

Peter K. Boucher

unread,
Sep 27, 1993, 11:45:35 PM9/27/93
to
lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:
|> > Centerwall is consistent with the claim that Canada's homicide
|> > rate equals the U.S. rate, when racial and economic distinctions
|> > are controlled, but other forms of violent crime are far worse
|> > there.
|>
|> Rubbish. You obviously have not even read the abstract of his paper.

You mean this abstract?

``As compared with Americans, Canadians in the 1970s possessed one
tenth as many handguns per capita. To assess whether this affected
the total criminal homicide rate, the mean annual criminal homicide
rates of Canadian provinces were compared with those of adjoining US
states for the period of 1976 to 1980. No consistent differences
were observed; criminal homicide rates were sometimes higher in the
Canadian province, and sometimes higher in the adjoining US state.
Major differences in the prevalence of handguns have not resulted in
differing total criminal homicide rates in Canadian provinces and
adjoining US states. The similar rates of criminal homicide are
primarily attributable to underlying similar rates of aggravated
assault.''

Put up or shut up, Tim. I claimed only that Centerwall's data is
consistent with my claim. Would you care to show where it's not
consistent, or would you like to hurl some more unfounded insults
my way?

Scott Benjamin

unread,
Sep 28, 1993, 10:22:16 PM9/28/93
to
In article <1993Sep28.0...@ncsu.edu>, h...@unity.ncsu.edu (HENRY E SCHAFFER) writes:
> In article <1993Sep27....@math.ucla.edu> (some idiot) writes:
> > ...
> >If you think about it, you will find that, in fact, liberals have no
> >brains.
>
> I left out the name because this isn't the only post that expresses
> this sentiment. But I have a question for all of you staunchly
> conservative (or should I say 'flaming right-winger') pro-RKBA types.
>
> Are you really so anti-liberal that you are willing to turn away all
> the liberals who are working for the rkba?
>
> --henry schaffer


A small piece of a speech by L. Neil Smith
Delivered at the Libertarian Party National Convention
Salt Lake City, Utah, September 3, 1993
===========snip===========================================
Consider the following ...
Sarah and Jim Brady, those mavens of victim disarmament (and by the way,
don't say "gun control" any more, say "victim disarmament") -- Sarah and Jim
are REPUBLICANS. Sarah still calls herself a "conservative".
John Chaffee, Senator from Rhode Island who introduced a bill last year
to confiscate every pistol and revolver in the United States of America, is a
REPUBLICAN.
George F. Will, columnist, theorist, and REPUBLICAN, demanded repeal of
the Second Amendment months before Michael Gartner, the "ultraliberal former
president of NBC news". Please remember that, the next time you see an NRA
commercial.
William Bennett, former REPUBLICAN Secretary of Education & Drug Czar
(pardon me, that's "WAR on Drugs Czar") calls for banning "assault weapons"
-- and I guess this is the place to tell you, if you don't know, that these
"assault weapons" bills are invariably written to include the .25 automatic
in
your mom's purse, the .45 your dad brought home from Korea, the .22 rifle you
learned to shoot with, and the shotgun over your mantelpiece. But the real
goal is to outlaw that class of weapons most useful in controlling
government.
Pete Wilson, REPUBLICAN governor of California, cheerfully allowed that
state's Roberti-Roos "assault weapon" law to pass when he could have vetoed
it
-- and he's no worse than his predecessor, REPUBLICAN George Dukmejian.
Speaking of Republican Georges, REPUBLICAN George Bush began his first
campaign whimpering about small revolvers, and later betrayed the Second
Amendment with an edict against imported "assault weapons". It should never
be
forgotten that the Waco massacre was rehearsed during Republican George's
administration.
REPUBLICANS of the New Jersey Senate refused to repeal that state's ban
on semiautomatic "assault weapons". REPUBLICANS of the U.S. Senate Judiciary
Committee and later the entire U.S. Senate approved the appointment of
Jackboot Janet Reno despite her publicly stated wish to confiscate every
private weapon in America.
William F. Buckley, REPUBLICAN novelist, syndicated columnist, host of
FIRING LINE, and editor of NATIONAL REVIEW, has endorsed the Brady Bill.
Jack Kemp, the Great White Hope of REPUBLICAN conservatism demanded on a
recent CBS FACE THE NATION, a universal ban on semiautomatic "assault
weapons".
even Rush Limbaugh, "the most Republican man in America", although he
pays occasional lip service to the Second Amendment, is good friends with
Jack
Kemp, and an outright toady to Bill Bennett. Rush was a towering mountain of
Jello all through the Waco siege.

REPUBLICAN Chairman Lee Atwater -- who is, I'm happy to
report, finally a GOOD politician -- stated that Republicans could afford to
ignore gun people, who would vote Republican no matter what, because where
else were they gonna go?

"Will the REPUBLICANS promise to veto all future victim disarmament
legislation?"
"Will the REPUBLICANS promise to repeal, nullify, or otherwise dispose
of (I like that phrase, "otherwise dispose of") every victim disarmament law,
not one of which is constitutional, presently on the books?
"Will the REPUBLICANS promise to decriminalize the act of self-defense,
so that it no longer costs, on average, your life savings to defend yourself
from the state, once you've successfully defended yourself from a freelance
criminal?
"Will the REPUBLICANS promise to arrest any senator, congressman, state
legislator, county commissioner, or city councilman who introduces, sponsors,
or votes for victim disarmament legislation, and throw him in jail where he
belongs?
"Will the REPUBLICANS promise to do the same with sheriffs, chiefs of
police, mayors, governors, and PRESIDENTS who enforce these unconstitutional
laws?"
And now you can ask, "Then why the hell are you still voting for
Republicans? And why are you still waiting for the NRA to help, when the LP,
with its unbroken record of uncompromising commitment to the Second
Amendment,
can do more than merely PROMISE -- if you'll give us the POWER to do these
things by giving us your VOTE?
========================snip==============================

Its been said before in this forum, but I'll say it again...

If you love freedom...
If you don't want to see America become the next "socialist experiment"...
If you believe that the authors of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights
had the right idea...

Then do yourself and your country a favor, learn about the Libertarian
Party! 1-800-682-1776 345-...@mcimail.com


Scott Benjamin AKA sco...@noao.edu
---------------------------------------------------------------------
I feel very strongly about it. I think -- I also associate myself
with the other remarks of the Attorney General. I think it's the
beginning. It's not the end of the process by any means.
--Bill Clinton, on the Brady Bill and other gun control laws. 8-11-93
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Looks like its time to buy stock in P.V.C.!

Certainly NOT the opinions of N.O.A.O. or K.P.N.O.!

Al Brackett--FAbracketO OPS--232-7620--DGC

unread,
Sep 29, 1993, 4:00:49 AM9/29/93
to
In article <1993Sep28.0...@ncsu.edu> h...@unity.ncsu.edu (HENRY E SCHAFFER) writes:
>In article <1993Sep27....@math.ucla.edu> (some idiot) writes:
>> ...
>>If you think about it, you will find that, in fact, liberals have no
>>brains.
>
.
[snip]

> Which is more important to you, Preserving the RKBA or saying nasty
>things about liberals?
>

-------------

The thing is, most of us look at who is tring to take away the RKBA and
we see "liberals", not conserviteves, not libertarians..
WE SEE LIBERALS

So should we call all liberals "GUNGRABERS" I don't think so.

--------------

> Are you really so anti-liberal that you are willing to turn away all
>the liberals who are working for the rkba?
>

--------------

Are you a liberal that is working for the RKBA?? Mabye you would see what we
see, and understand.. ALSO mabye you could help us not to generalise.

---------------


> If so, you are (IMHO) an idiot.
>
>--henry schaffer

--
reagrds/ al
--

Did I drop my .sig in the coffee??? Al Brackett
N1IQQ @ KA1RCI.RI (for those that know) abra...@dg-webo.webo.dg.com
Work For Peace / Plan For Conflict / You can't WIN if You don't TRY
[insert] Standard Disclamer Here< > BLESS / PEACE

Danny Low

unread,
Sep 29, 1993, 6:43:43 PM9/29/93
to
HENRY E SCHAFFER (h...@unity.ncsu.edu) wrote:
: Which is more important to you, Preserving the RKBA or saying nasty
: things about liberals?

There are liberal pro-gunners but the most vocal anti-gunners
posting here tend to be screaming liberals. Gun control
used to be a right-wing issue. It was used to insure that the
wrong people (i.e. niggers, kikes, micks, sloppes, etc.) did not
get guns to shoot back at "good white people" such as the KKK.
New York's strict gun control laws are a good example of this.
The original purpose was to keep Tammany Hall's opponents from
shooting back when Tammany Hall's thugs were trying to vote
early and often.

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 2:57:17 AM9/30/93
to
>>>>> On 27 Sep 1993 16:16:21 -0500, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) said:
> (Tim Lambert) writes:
> |> And then you opined that the claimed greater violence in Canada was
> |> because Canadians could not defend themeselves with guns.

> You seem to be having a problem understanding how I could think that
> making it easier for honest Canadians to defend themselves would lead
> to reduced crime, while I at the same time claim that cross-national
> comparisons attempting to find a bivariate association between gun
> ownership and the homicide rate are useless. I assume that you can
> see that these are two separate issues, so why pretend otherwise?

Silly me. In consecutive sentences in the same paragraph you 1. made a
cross-national comparison between Canada and the US claiming that
Canda was "really" more violent than the US, and then 2. offered
your opinion that making it easier for Canadians to defend themselves
would reduce violence. It was of course foolish of me to suppose that
you felt claim 1. supported opinion 2.

> |> All the countries in this discussion have been introduced by you.
> |> Let's see, you mentioned Canada. Gun law in 78.
> |> Homicide rate (per 100,000 population)
> |> 73-78 2.7 3.1 2.9 3.0 2.8 average 2.9
> |> 79-83 2.7 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.7 average 2.6
> |> (a t test on the statisitical significance of the difference of the
> |> means gives p=.01)
> |> The US homicide rate for 73-78 averaged 9.2, for 79-83 it averaged 9.4.

> The Canadian homicide rate had already been in decline, and the passage
> of the gun law did not affect the rate of decline. I assume that you
> already knew this, Tim, so why cite this useless data?

Let's see: from 73-78 the rate went up, then down, then up, then down.
In 78 it was higher than in 73. Perhaps you can enlighten me as to
the nature of this decline you claim exists?


> |> > I've not claimed that gun availability does not affect the homicide rate.
> |> > I've claimed that international comparisons of gun availability and
> |> > homicide rates do nothing to prove a causal relationship.
> |>
> |> And gone on to claim that you can make international comparisons to
> |> support your position, to wit:

> No! I've said that comparisons can be made on both sides, but both are
> invalid, because this type of comparison is invalid. Your attempts to
> show that such comparisons are invalid when used to suppport the claim
> that gun ownership lowers crime do nothing to refute my point. What
> part of this are you having trouble understanding, Tim?

You've said that comparisons can be made by both sides. You need
therefore, to make comparisons that support your side. If you cannot
make such comparisons, then your point is refuted.

Tim

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 4:17:19 AM9/30/93
to
>>>>> On 27 Sep 1993 16:35:41 -0500, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) said:
> (Tim Lambert) writes:
> |> > supplied above to the numbers you quote here. 29.142857% of
> |> > 6,800,000 is 1,981,714.3 soldiers. 1,981,714.3 soldiers in
> |> > 2,700,000 households means there may be a soldier in as many as
> |> > 73.396825% of Swiss households.

> |> Apparently my omission convinced Peter that the population of
> |> Switzerland was 100% male.

> I love it. Tim posts faulty data, and if you point it out to him,
> he implies that you're foolish for not identifying the source of
> his errors.

No, Peter, pointing out an error is not foolish. Basing a posting
around the premise that Switzerland is women-free is.

> Tim, if we cut the number in half, you still get 36.698413% (37%
> for you, Tim) of Swiss households, based on your own calculations,
> with a member of the armed forces living in them. Of course, this
> number is low because it doesn't count households that have a
> female member of the armed services, but it's still significantly
> higher than your other estimate of 23%, Tim.

One more time. The actual size of the Swiss army is 625,000. You can
find this out if you look in the library. That is 9% of the
population. My rough estimate of 15% was an upper bound since it
assumed that all Swiss who entered the army stayed in it till they
were 50. Since the actual percentage is 9% it would appear that some
leave before 50. The percentage of Swiss household with an army
member is AT MOST 23%.

> And, of course, only
> members of the armed forces can own firearms in Switzerland. Right,
> Tim?

Civilian ownership will undoubtedly mean that the percentage of
households with a gun is more than 23%. To find out what the actual
number is, you need to conduct a survey of Swiss households. This has
been done, and the answer would seem to be 32.6% (Security Journal
1(3):169-74). This is rather less than the 49% for the US.

Tim

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 11:03:24 AM9/30/93
to
>>>>> On 27 Sep 1993 22:45:35 -0500, bou...@csl.sri.com (Peter K. Boucher) said:

> (Tim Lambert) writes:
> |> > Centerwall is consistent with the claim that Canada's homicide
> |> > rate equals the U.S. rate, when racial and economic distinctions
> |> > are controlled, but other forms of violent crime are far worse
> |> > there.
> |>
> |> Rubbish. You obviously have not even read the abstract of his paper.

> You mean this abstract?

> ``As compared with Americans, Canadians in the 1970s possessed one
> tenth as many handguns per capita. To assess whether this affected
> the total criminal homicide rate, the mean annual criminal homicide
> rates of Canadian provinces were compared with those of adjoining US
> states for the period of 1976 to 1980. No consistent differences
> were observed; criminal homicide rates were sometimes higher in the
> Canadian province, and sometimes higher in the adjoining US state.
> Major differences in the prevalence of handguns have not resulted in
> differing total criminal homicide rates in Canadian provinces and
> adjoining US states. The similar rates of criminal homicide are
> primarily attributable to underlying similar rates of aggravated
> assault.''

> Put up or shut up, Tim. I claimed only that Centerwall's data is
> consistent with my claim. Would you care to show where it's not
> consistent

If you are of the opinion that Centerwall has controlled for race and
economic standing then Centerwall's last sentence contradicts your
claim that Canada is "far more violent". If you don't think that
Centerwall has so controlled, then his data is consistent with your
claim in the same sense that "Hamlet" is.

Let's try one more time to get a straight answer from you. You said:

> If you control for race and economic standing, Canada is far more
> violent than the U.S.

Do you in fact have any evidence at all to support this claim?

Tim

Joe B. Simpson

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 10:36:35 AM9/30/93
to
>One more time. The actual size of the Swiss army is 625,000. You can
>find this out if you look in the library. That is 9% of the
>population. My rough estimate of 15% was an upper bound since it
>assumed that all Swiss who entered the army stayed in it till they
>were 50. Since the actual percentage is 9% it would appear that some
>leave before 50. The percentage of Swiss household with an army
>member is AT MOST 23%.

Didn't some posters who had lived in Switzerland tell us that when people
left the active military they were allowed, and encouraged, to keep their
military assault rifles?

-joe
--
You spend the night
Like you were spending a dime
- Lyle Lovett

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 11:24:17 AM9/30/93
to
>>>>> On Mon, 27 Sep 1993 21:22:30 GMT, jb...@cup.hp.com (Jon Buck) said:
> Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:

>> > Perhaps someone from Switzerland can enlighten us. Are not all males
>> > between the ages of 18 and 55 issued rifles?

>> No. All male Swiss citizens between 20 and 50 who are in the army are
>> issued rifles. Roughly 15% of Swiss residents are not citizens, and
>> 20% of the citizens called up do not serve in the army. So, very
>> roughly, that's (50-20)/70*.8*.85 = 15% of the population.

> Woops. The problem with the above statement (and the calculation
> below) is the phrase "in the army". Unless my understanding is
> mistaken, Swiss males who have completed army service are issued with
> a rifle to keep in their homes; note that these men are _not_ in the
> army, but are members of local militias. This will become important
> in a minute; read on.

My source ("World Armies" John Keegan) does not mention any local
militias of over 50s and states that in Switzerland, "the army"="the
militia".

From a posting a week ago containing information provided by the Swiss
Consulate:

] Military service in Switzerland is compulsory and all male
] Swiss citizens incorporated in combatant militia units are
] taught how to shoot, beginning at age 20 with basic
] military training. Rifle clubs teach younger men how to
] shoot in voluntary preparatory courses.

] All combatant militia troops (ages 20 to 50) are obliged to
] keep their personal weapon, normally an automatic assault
] rifle and ammunition at home.

...

] Automatic and Semiautomatic weapons can only be purchased
] (and carried) with a special permit issued by the Federal
] Military Department (Department of Defense), after
] consultation with the Federal Police, and a special
] cantonal authorization which generally is only granted to
] collectors.

Tim

Steve Kao

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 1:18:27 PM9/30/93
to
Tim Lambert (lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca) wrote:
> The percentage of Swiss household with an army
> member is AT MOST 23%.

Serious question. Don't people who leave the Swiss army get to keep the
weapon that was issued to them.

- Steve Kao

Tim Lambert

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 3:30:28 PM9/30/93
to
>>>>> On 27 Sep 1993 23:05:54 GMT, dl...@svale.hp.com (Danny Low) said:
>> hand all
>> gun% gun% A/T SA Rob Bur Homicide
>> Switzerland 14.0 32.6 3.9 5.5 2.2 4.0 1.2
>> USA 29.0 48.9 12.7 10.4 5.5 13.7 8.8
>>
>>Key:
>>hand gun% is the percentage of households reporting hand gun ownership
>>all gun% is the percentage of households reporting any gun ownership

> The Swiss number is not credible with me due to universal militia duty.

As I have explained in other postings, at most 23% of Swiss households
contain a militia member. So this does not contradict the survey.

> It might be explainable if the survey was ONLY on PRIVATELY owned guns.
> The rifles issued to the militia are GOVERNMENT property and the Swiss
> polled could legitimately claim no private guns in the house even though
> they have an assault rifle in their closet.

The survey (in Switzerland only) did ask about army guns (question
37c).

> The biggest flaw in the statistics is it does not seem to try to
> account for ILLEGALLY owned guns. Colin Greenwood in his study of
> the UK found the number of illegally owned guns exceeded the legal
> number by a significant amount.

Sure, any correlations will only tell us about relationships between
crime and legal guns. But that seems to be interesting in itself.

> However given the statistics the correlation coefficients are:

> Assault Sexual assault Homicide

> Handguns 0.31 0.24 0.88
> All Guns 0.28 0.28 0.71

> If there was a relationship between violence and guns then the
> correlation should have been high in all three categories.

Now this doesn't follow at all. Guns play a role (offensively or
defensively) in only a small fraction of assaults and sexual assaults.
If all three categories were high, this would suggest to me that high
violent crime rates caused high gun ownership for defence. The high
correlation between homicide and gun ownership suggests that gun
ownership causes homicide. (It seems unlikely that people acquire guns
just to defend against homicide and not against other violent crime.)
Of course, it is entirely possible that some third factor has caused
the correlation. Also, since the US has such a large homicide rate,
this tends to skew the results.

The following article may prove interesting:
(Unfortunately, the relevant issue seems to be missing from my library.)

Authors
Killias M.
Institution
Faculte de droit, Universite de Lausanne, Switzerland.
Title
International correlations between gun ownership and rates of homicide and
suicide.
Source
Canadian Medical Association Journal. 148(10):1721-5, 1993 May 15.
Abstract
OBJECTIVE: To examine international correlations between reported rates of
household gun ownership and rates of homicide and suicide with a gun.
DESIGN: Survey. POPULATION: People who responded to a telephone survey
conducted by the 1989 International Crime Survey in 11 European countries,
Australia, Canada and the United States. RESULTS: Positive correlations
were obtained between the rates of household gun ownership and the
national rates of homicide and suicide as well as the proportions of
homicides and suicides committed with a gun. There was no negative
correlation between the rates of ownership and the rates of homicide and
suicide committed by other means; this indicated that the other means were
not used to "compensate" for the absence of guns in countries with a lower
rate of gun ownership. CONCLUSION: Larger studies are needed to examine
more closely possible confounding factors such as the national tendency
toward violent solutions, and more information on the type and
availability of guns will be helpful in future studies. Nevertheless, the
correlations detected in this study suggest that the presence of a gun in
the home increases the likelihood of homicide or suicide.

Don Baldwin

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 2:52:47 PM9/30/93
to
In article <28d32v$g...@hpscit.sc.hp.com> dl...@svale.hp.com (Danny Low) writes:
>HENRY E SCHAFFER (h...@unity.ncsu.edu) wrote:
>: Which is more important to you, Preserving the RKBA or saying nasty
>: things about liberals?
>
>There are liberal pro-gunners but the most vocal anti-gunners
>posting here tend to be screaming liberals.

Er, how do you know that? Where have the anti-gunners in this group
volunteered this information? I think this is probably fairly accurate
but an assumption and not a known fact.

In the meantime, I'm keeping a mailing list for pro-gun _Democrats_ and
it's up to 30 subscribers at this point. Several subscribers are among
the more strident pro-gunners on this newsgroup. So let's remember that
we're all in this together, OK?

don

Peter K. Boucher

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 4:18:51 PM9/30/93
to
lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:

|> (Peter K. Boucher) said:
|> > No! I've said that comparisons can be made on both sides, but both are
^^^^^^^^^^^^

|> > invalid, because this type of comparison is invalid. Your attempts to
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

|> > show that such comparisons are invalid when used to suppport the claim
|> > that gun ownership lowers crime do nothing to refute my point. What
|> > part of this are you having trouble understanding, Tim?
|>
|> You've said that comparisons can be made by both sides. You need
|> therefore, to make comparisons that support your side. If you cannot
|> make such comparisons, then your point is refuted.

Hello... Knock, knock, knock... Hello? Anybody home?

Alfred A. Hambidge, Jr.

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 3:56:33 PM9/30/93
to
>Abstract
> OBJECTIVE: To examine international correlations between reported rates of
> household gun ownership and rates of homicide and suicide with a gun.
> DESIGN: Survey. POPULATION: People who responded to a telephone survey
> conducted by the 1989 International Crime Survey in 11 European countries,
> Australia, Canada and the United States.

Why only concentrate on Europe? Why not include Taiwan, Mexico, Japan etc.?


> RESULTS: Positive correlations
> were obtained between the rates of household gun ownership and the
> national rates of homicide and suicide as well as the proportions of
> homicides and suicides committed with a gun. There was no negative
> correlation between the rates of ownership and the rates of homicide and
> suicide committed by other means; this indicated that the other means were
> not used to "compensate" for the absence of guns in countries with a lower
> rate of gun ownership. CONCLUSION: Larger studies are needed to examine
> more closely possible confounding factors such as the national tendency
> toward violent solutions, and more information on the type and
> availability of guns will be helpful in future studies. Nevertheless, the
> correlations detected in this study suggest that the presence of a gun in
> the home increases the likelihood of homicide or suicide.

It seems that the judicious choice of countries in this study may
represent a sampling bias. And, the authors seem to forget that
correlation does not prove causality.

Al Hambidge, Jr. Standard disclaimers apply.
"The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of
zeal, well meaning but without understanding." Justice Louis Brandeis

Peter K. Boucher

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 4:34:12 PM9/30/93
to
lam...@silver.cs.umanitoba.ca (Tim Lambert) writes:
|> Silly me. In consecutive sentences in the same paragraph you 1. made a
|> cross-national comparison between Canada and the US claiming that
|> Canda was "really" more violent than the US, and then 2. offered
|> your opinion that making it easier for Canadians to defend themselves
|> would reduce violence. It was of course foolish of me to suppose that
|> you felt claim 1. supported opinion 2.

de...@lsid.hp.com (Dean Payne) wrote:
|> Tim noted that outside the metro areas, nonhandgun homicide rates were
|> similar (2.9 in Canada, 2.6 in the U.S):

How about it, Tim? Gun ownership in the U.S. is highest outside
the metro areas, and yet has a lower homicide rate than similar
areas in Canada. Interpret, for us, what this means.

Danny Low

unread,
Sep 30, 1993, 6:24:12 PM9/30/93