Sanding our assholes with 150 grit. Slowly. Lovingly.

Concealed Carry Laws: the answer

My fellow economists John Lott and Bill Landes published a very interesting and comprehensive analysis of multiple victim shootings:

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=272929

The science proves that the only laws that have an effect in reducing these incidents are laws allowing citizens to carry concealed handguns.
Permalink Practical Economist 
April 18th, 2007 10:46pm
> our results find that the only policy factor to have a consistently significant influence on multiple victim public shootings is the passage of concealed handgun laws.

Public schools? They are advocating high school kids come a-packing? Or do they want every teacher to be armed?

Can't we just lie to the kids and tell them every teacher is as loaded as a ghetto grocery store? That would act as deterrent.
Permalink blahty heartsheep 
April 18th, 2007 10:56pm
Son, you can argue with me, but you can't argue with figures.
Permalink Practical Economist 
April 18th, 2007 10:57pm
Wait -- "the Science proves"?  Regarding multiple handgun homicides?

I'd like to see your control group, please.  'Cause I've got this ugly statue, see, and it keeps the elephants away.

How many places HAVE 'concealed carry' laws, anyway?  Texas?  And THAT'S your control group -- fewer multiple handgun homicides happen in Texas?

I don't know -- I hear my "Bogus!" alarm going off big time.

Oh, well, once the research has been repeated a few times, the results will be more robust, I'm sure.
Permalink SaveTheHubble 
April 18th, 2007 11:03pm
If you find problems with the statistical analysis, feel free to publish your paper or letter showing the flaws. If you bothered to even skim the report, you would know that 23 states adopted right to carry laws between 1977 and 1997, the period of the study's analysis. Not just Texas as you are trying to imply.

"Consider the Luby’s Cafeteria shooting in 1991. One of the surviving lunch patrons, an expert marksman, had left her handgun in her car to comply with the then existing Texas law. Had the gun remained in her possession, she might have been able to stop the attacker or, at least, limit the amount of damage he did."

On March 13, 1997, a Jordanian soldier shot seven young Israeli girls to death while they were visiting Jordan’s “Island of Peace.” According to newspaper reports, the Israelis had “complied with Jordanian requests to leave their weapons behind when they entered the border
enclave. Otherwise, they might have been able to stop the shooting.”

Referring to the 1984 massacre at a McDonald’s restaurant in California, Israeli criminologist
Abraham Tennenbaum wrote that:
what occurred at a [crowded venue in] Jerusalem some weeks before the California McDonald's massacre: three
terrorists who attempted to machine-gun the throng managed to kill only one victim before being shot down by
handgun carrying Israelis. Presented to the press the next day, the surviving terrorist complained that his group had not realized that Israeli civilians were armed. The terrorists had planned to machine-gun a succession of crowded spots, thinking that they would be able to escape before the police or army could arrive to deal with them.
Permalink Practical Economist 
April 18th, 2007 11:12pm
When it rains everyone gets wet.

Everyone having their own weapon is not a deterrent but an opportunity.

The prevailing available evidence is that even if the statistics made sense the average intelligence of people generally, and the US in particular, would tend to increase violence rather than reduce it.

I wonder why, in the history of the Wild West, the removal of the privilege of individuals carrying their own weapons is a milestone in the growth of the town? 

The US is a barbarous nation, I'm afraid that until we exclude it from the rest of human society its going to continue to pollute.
Permalink Send private email Simon Lucy 
April 18th, 2007 11:41pm
"The prevailing available evidence is that"

You are stating the opposite of the available evidence. Please read the study. Getting rid of gun control laws is the NUMBER ONE most effective thing you can do legally to reduce crime and this is a PROVEN FACT.
Permalink Practical Economist 
April 18th, 2007 11:44pm
North Korea sent this guy over so that we'd all go ballistic over gun control. Pass Brady Bunch legislation - at least half a dozen new laws, no six-shooters, six-packs or metric measurement of any sort. Disarm everyone but Tori Amos and Tony Bennett (they still have a reality TV duel on their contract).

Then North Korea has us at their whim: they will demand another $50 mil not to develop nuclear missiles. Again.
Permalink Send private email strawberry snowflake 
April 19th, 2007 12:08am
Meh.You can always find a study to support a particular POV.

http://injuryprevention.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/12/6/365

I prefer a relatively gun-free society where carrying heat is a serious offence. On the whole it's quieter if handguns are restricted to cops and crims.
Permalink trollop 
April 19th, 2007 12:16am
http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/gun-laws-fall-short-in-war-on-crime/2005/10/28/1130400366681.html

"there is no definitive evidence that a decade of restrictive firearms laws has done anything to reduce weapon-related crime, according to NSW's top criminal statistician"
Permalink Practical Economist 
April 19th, 2007 12:27am
> but you can't argue with figures.

Ah, but figure always argue.

Where's personal nuke? I laugh at your .45.
Permalink son of parnas 
April 19th, 2007 12:46am
All the numbers are in the OP's link (the full PDF link at bottom). Which states are carry/which aren't/what years laws passed/when mass murders occurred, etc. The only way to argue with them is to sit down and crunch them.

Otherwise, it's like that abortion/low crime correlation.
Permalink blahty heartsheep 
April 19th, 2007 1:03am
The figures are there, though obviously selected. What is very doubtful is if they prove anything at all.

Firstly there has never been an effective gun control law passed in the US, because you can always bring the guns across state lines, though there is no control group there.
Permalink Send private email Stephen Jones 
April 19th, 2007 2:57am
PE is presumably also aware that Lott's results are only replicable when analysed using his methods and his data, and not using other methods and other data.

He is also presumably aware that Levitt accused Lott of paying $15,000 for a special issue of the journal his research appeared in, so that it would be peer reviewed by people favourable to Lott, and that the editor of the journal was furious that the press had allowed this to happen.
Permalink Send private email Stephen Jones 
April 19th, 2007 3:06am
Statistically I can also show when nobody is allowed guns, nobody gets shot. Odd that.
Permalink el 
April 19th, 2007 4:04am
"there has never been an effective gun control law passed in the US"

Nonsensical and irrelevant statement.

The study shows that concealed carry laws reduce crime, not gun control laws. Please read the article.

Couldn't find anything about your claims he self-published the article, but even if that was true, it doesn't change the data, all of which is publicly available.
Permalink Practical Economist 
April 19th, 2007 4:05am
Is it all the data though?

And the numbers themselves are meaningless. 

The numbers that aren't, are the Monte Carlo effects of multiplying the numbers of guns available to the general population.  The more guns, the more accidents (ah yes accidents an unfortunate by product of having dangerous weapons), the more guns the more likely guns are to be used and used in combination.

There is no evidence that an entire population carrying concealed guns would deter one or more members of that population from using their own weapon. Because no such population exists.

The intent on carrying a weapon is that it will be used, there may be a moral gloss on it that it would only be used for self defence but I can well see anyone in that society using the argument of self defence because they saw someone supposedly reaching for their weapon.
Permalink Send private email Simon Lucy 
April 19th, 2007 4:41am
Lots of studies show that a person's chances of being shot in the US are highly correlated with whether or not they own a gun (including legal guns).  You can argue about which way round the causes are, and what if any policies should be made as a result - but the facts on this one are indisputable.

Unlike the "facts" in this one outlier, highly controversial, highly disputed study, cited by our CoT's friendly rightwing nutjob.
Permalink  
April 19th, 2007 4:42am
Highly controversial and highly disputed by who? You?
Permalink Practical Economist 
April 19th, 2007 4:58am
How about the National Academy of Sciences panel of firearms research: "which looked into the question of whether Lott’s conduct was ethical. They concluded that he almost certainly fabricated a mysterious survey and that his results were the product of coding errors."

OR

A study by Ayres and Donohue of Stanford Law School, which claims that Lott's conclusions were incorrect

OR

The New England Journal of Medicine


You really an ignorant nut job, aren't you?
Permalink  
April 19th, 2007 5:35am
I believe Switzerland still has conscription and that after serving they remain reservists with fully stocked armouries in their basements. I'm not aware of any multiple-killers rampaging round Geneva.
Permalink Billx 
April 19th, 2007 6:09am
>they remain reservists with fully stocked armouries in
>their basements.

You believe wrong. Swiss males who served in the army are given an assault rifle for use in case of war. Other uses of this rifle are strictly forbitten and harshly punished. The only time their allowed to be used is for mandatory target practice that reservists have to take part in every so often. The only other purpose of the weapon is self protection on the way to the barracks in case of war. Ammunition is stored in sealed tins that are controlled regularly and these rules are hardly if ever violated (with the exception of people commiting suicide).

It's sort of like the "well-regulated militia" concept only that in the case of the Swiss "well-regulated militia" doesn't mean "let every crackpot buy as many guns as they like and do whatever they want with them."
Permalink Send private email a2800276 
April 19th, 2007 6:35am
Ok, they might only have one assault rifle with harsh penalties for illegal use but they couild still go on the rampage, penalties aren't a problem if you're going to kill yourself. Are there any recorded incidents of a Swiss 'going postal' ?
Permalink Billx 
April 19th, 2007 7:45am
No Swiss mass shootings?

http://edition.cnn.com/2001/WORLD/europe/09/27/switzerland.shooting/index.html

Don't forget that Switzerland has 1/40th of the population of the USA -- so if the rate of occurance deranged mass shooters in both countries is the same -- then you would expect whereas has a mass-shooting about once every 6 months, that Switzerland would have one about once every 20 years... and it turns out that they do.
Permalink Practical Ignoramus 
April 19th, 2007 7:49am
At last! - some real facts to go on - it's quite gratifying in a weird sort of way that shit like this does sometimes happen in places like Switzerland.
Permalink Billx 
April 19th, 2007 8:08am
BTW, the major problem I have with gun control advocacy is that I get the sense they believe that "passing gun control laws" equals "no guns around"

If the US could pass a law that meant all the existing guns would go away and no guns would be smuggled into the country, I might see their reasoning. But that wouldn't happen.

Gun control laws only mean that law-abiding citizens are unarmed, and criminals aren't. This, to me, seems to be a dangerous situation.

BTW, with the reduction of border security in the EU and the wealth of weapons to the east, handgun crime is on the rise in peaceful, gun free Europe.
http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2001/08/07/guns-usat.htm


In 2002, sixteen people killed in a school shooting in Erfurt Germany.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erfurt_massacre
Permalink Send private email Philo 
April 19th, 2007 8:14am
Yes gun control laws mean that _some_ guns are still around.

But they do mean that _less_ guns are around.

The problem with the "only criminals would have guns" argument, is that assume that criminals are different from normal people.

The reality is that many people who shoot others are normal people.  The guy who finds his wife cheating and shoots her in a fit of anger, or the guy who just went insane and shot a bunch of innocent people, usually are _not_ career criminals - they're normal folks who got legal guns, and then went off the rails.
Permalink  
April 19th, 2007 9:11am
"The problem with the "only criminals would have guns" argument, is that assume that criminals are different from normal people. "

They are. Criminals, for example, are "normal people" who are willing to buy guns illegally and for whom deterrents like prison time and arrest aren't that big a deal.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 19th, 2007 9:13am
That goes both ways.

Greater gun control wouldn't stop criminals buying guns illegally. But it would make harder for criminals to buy guns legally (and many crimes are committed with legally obtained guns),  and it could have a knock on effect to making illegal guns harder to obtain.  In Britain for example, although there is some gun crime, and great hysteria about it, it's still pretty hard for criminals to obtain a guy... an awful lot of "armed" crime is done using knives, clubs, hammers, etc., which while still dangerous, have a lot less killing power than guns.

Greater gun control would also lessen the number of crimes committed by non-criminals who have simply gun off the rails.  You know, like Cho.
Permalink Practical Ignoramus 
April 19th, 2007 9:31am
As I say, I find it highly ironic that the people most distrustful of voting and democracy and rule "by the people", seem also to be those most insistent that arming everybody in order to stop one nutjob every 8 years would NOT result in a 'democratic bloodbath'.

But Simon is saying it so much better than I could.  Thanks Simon.
Permalink SaveTheHubble 
April 19th, 2007 9:34am
"As I say, I find it highly ironic that the people most distrustful of voting and democracy and rule "by the people", seem also to be those most insistent that arming everybody in order to stop one nutjob every 8 years would NOT result in a 'democratic bloodbath'."

It's completely the opposite.  The people MOST distrustful of allowing people to govern themselves are the SAME people who want everything regulated to death.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 19th, 2007 9:36am
I'd love hear how lack of gun control has been effective, forcing George Bush to respect the consitutional and human rights in the US...
Permalink  
April 19th, 2007 10:23am
"The numbers that aren't, are the Monte Carlo effects of multiplying the numbers of guns available to the general population.  The more guns, the more accidents (ah yes accidents an unfortunate by product of having dangerous weapons), the more guns the more likely guns are to be used and used in combination."

More police officers use their weapons in the commission of crimes than 'carry permit' holders use theirs in same.

More police officers use their weapons to commit murder (no, not in the course of their duty. real murder.) than 'carry permit' holders use theirs to do the same.

I could be wrong, but I am betting there are far more carry permit holders than police officers already, so you are talking nonsense.
Permalink JoC 
April 19th, 2007 10:37am
-----"Don't forget that Switzerland has 1/40th of the population of the USA -- so if the rate of occurance deranged mass shooters in both countries is the same -- then you would expect whereas has a mass-shooting about once every 6 months, that Switzerland would have one about once every 20 years... and it turns out that they do."-----

The number of mass shootings in the US is around twenty a year.
Permalink Send private email Stephen Jones 
April 19th, 2007 1:44pm
I call bullshit. Most of the victims were teenagers who we as a country don't even trust to let them buy beer.
Permalink Peter 
April 20th, 2007 9:55am

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