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So, where is Congressional Oversight?

Discussion in 'Firearm Related' started by John A., Dec 2, 2018.

  1. John A.

    John A. I'm "THAT" guy Staff Member Global Moderator Moderator

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    I'm sure the title probably has raised some eyebrows and it should. Because it's a valid and sincere question. One that I am certain would never be answered.

    For years, Congress has hounded the BATFE about how many machineguns are in the registry and they have been reluctant to answer. They have stonewalled and I have even watched them question former ATF directors this exact question but with no direct answers.

    OK, there is a reason why I brought this up.

    According to the BATF, they basically don't know. Or, don't want to say. I'm thinking more of the former. Here's why.

    Some claim that it is because of poor recordkeeping over the last (almost) a century and I can dismiss a lot of it to that. But not all. Mainly because manufacturers have to keep a list of machineguns they produce and sell to the government, even though the government is exempt, manufacturers and contractors providing the government are not exempt.

    I am aware that the Government exempts itself from the same laws that it pushes down our necks. Yep, government can have machineguns and they are also tax exempt, unlike us.

    But when the ATF does give the numbers to Congress, how can this obvious error be allowed to stand without question?

    OK, you're probably wondering what I'm talking about, so I'll just get straight to the point.

    The number of machineguns that the BATFE says exist is complete BS.

    I am going to include this directly, but I wanted to give a link to the original source where I found it, but I wanted to add the FOIA text directly to the website in case something ever happened to the source. Emphasis mine.

    https://www.nfatca.org/pubs/MG_Count_FOIA_2016.pdf

    OK, so by THEIR counts, there are 175,977 transferable machineguns that civilians are able to own and can buy and sell among each other.

    There are 17,020 sales samples that varying manufacturers can loan various exempt government and police agencies and for testing.

    And there are 297,667 firearms that are owned by the government and all the police agencies in the USA.

    So, there are less than 500,000 machineguns in the registry total.

    While that may sound like a lot, that number cannot be correct. There are more soldiers in active service than that. There are more police officers than that. There are more federal agents in varying agencies than that.

    While I know that not every policeman has a machinegun, there are still a lot of them that do. And it's not just swat either.

    What about postal inspectors? Railroad inpectors (Dept of Transportation)? State national Guards? BLM, DOE, FDA, etc. And while many people do not know this, each branch is exempt and some are issued machineguns. I could go on and type just about every federal agency branch that has machineguns, but to make it easier, let's just say that each branch does.

    So, the BATFE would like to say that only a percentage of the government has machineguns?

    FWIW, just a year later after this FOIA was released, there were over 1 million active duty service members alone, not counting any other Fed or state agencies.

    So, only 1/3 of them have access to a gun at any given time?

    I know there are a lot of office and clerical and other non-front line personnel in the military. But the point that I am saying is this FOIA numbers cannot show anywhere near the correct number of machineguns this country has, or has made in the last 100 years since congress has demanded it.

    So, my question is, why is no one questioning the ATF? Why does Congress seem intent to turn a blind eye to one of the largest agencies in government? And my most pressing question, is why does no one outside of government seem to give a crap?
    Bobster and meanstreak like this.
  2. Djcala

    Djcala .30-06 Supporter

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    I have no clue as to your answer. I do know that every unit i was ever in had more weapons than warm bodies to use them in the arms room. I can also add while most officers in my spouses agency have their personal owned semi AR, they are issued a county owned M16 if they choose to have it. Im gonna agree the figure is WaY off, why matter though ???
    meanstreak likes this.
  3. John A.

    John A. I'm "THAT" guy Staff Member Global Moderator Moderator

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    It matters because they have a very specific job to do. And doesn't appear that they are doing it.

    It matters because we (civilians) are forced to follow these laws, while the government acts like it's no big deal if they're not. And from a Constitutional standpoint, we the people should be as well armed as the government. Not the other way around. I firmly believe that our founding fathers would strongly agree based on their writings.

    Perhaps it's the perfectionist in me, but when the NFA is tasked with this, they should be doing it and it should be correct. Even from the mid 1990's to now, the numbers are off. So, the excuse that I gave them about not being input into a computer isn't valid either because there have been more made than input since then.

    It matters because some elected officials want to do a registry. And my gut says that if they are unable to keep a registry of only one kind of firearm, doing untold millions of them, they're not going to be doing it properly either.

    It matters.
    meanstreak and Djcala like this.
  4. Djcala

    Djcala .30-06 Supporter

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    I got ya, id be willin to guess the manufactures and distributors follow the rules and report as required, BUT ya know them storage containers with ya old bound books and 4473s uncle sugar daddy wanted to keep ??? Im guessing the AUTo records probably dumped in the same fashion somewhere.
    meanstreak and John A. like this.
  5. MikeD

    MikeD I'm Your Huckleberry Staff Member Global Moderator "Philanthropist"

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    If we the people don't dot every "i", carry our paperwork everywhere, follow evey single rule to the nth degree we get the fast track to federal pound me in the *** prison. In fact all they have to do is determine via extreamly vague guidelines, we have "intent" and we are majorly screwed up.

    They can write policy with the weight of law without going through Congress yet they run lose and reckless when it comes to their own.
    meanstreak and John A. like this.
  6. Djcala

    Djcala .30-06 Supporter

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    Dont forget the good ole "constructive possession" either.
    meanstreak likes this.
  7. MikeD

    MikeD I'm Your Huckleberry Staff Member Global Moderator "Philanthropist"

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    Thats what I was thinking when I wrote "intent". Need more coffee.....
    meanstreak and Djcala like this.
  8. John A.

    John A. I'm "THAT" guy Staff Member Global Moderator Moderator

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    And don't forget state and local laws.

    The last check that I remember, there were over 600 pages of just federal and state laws. And that was several years ago, so I am certain there are more to have to deal with now.
    meanstreak, MikeD and Djcala like this.
  9. CaddmannQ

    CaddmannQ 12g Supporter

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    Well face it, there is not a single type of record-keeping that we can trust the government to have perfect figures on.

    Especially if they're in the State of Florida somewhere . . . ;)

    They can't tell us how many people are here, they can't tell us how many citizens there are, and they can't tell us who won the election in many cases.
    meanstreak and John A. like this.
  10. meanstreak

    meanstreak .30-06 Supporter

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    I bet the power ball people could tell us within an hour...

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