Sunday, July 29, 2018



The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 (MBTA) has been the single most important protection for our incredible migratory bird resources in all of history. It served to implement theMigratory Bird Treaty signed by the U.S. and Great Britain (on behalf of Canada) in 1916. In short, it prevents anyone not otherwise permitted to “at any time, by any means, or in any manner to hunt, take, capture [or] kill” any protected [listed] migratory birds.”But now there are some serious, even dangerously debilitating problems being proposed that will completely disable (if not destroy) the protections offered by this Act.

Those problems can all be boiled down to one word: Reinterpretation.
The Department of Interior (DOI) is proposing to substantially change the legal definition of the single word “take” as it is found in the MBTA. And changing the traditional and venerated meaning of that single word bodes ill if not evil for all of our migratory birds. 

Here is what I am talking about. Almost exactly 100 years ago the Congress passed the earliest and most important conservation law, the MBTA. Among other things it established the Federal Government’s authority to regulate the “take” of birds, including the prohibition against taking certain non-game birds such as eagles, hawks, songbirds and other birds not historically considered to be “game” birds. The language used in that Act was clear, straightforward and enforceable. Specifically it states, “Unless an individual has a valid permit, “it shall be unlawful at any time, by any means, or in any manner” to “hunt, take, capture [or] kill” migratory birds.” Furthermore, it does not discriminate between live or dead birds, and it also protects any bird parts including feathers, eggs, and nests. There are over 800 bird species currently listed. But now there is a big problem. Under a new, precedent setting Department of Interior  Solicitor’s Opinion (dated Dec. 22, 2017), the prohibitions on “take” have been dramatically changed. Taking a protected migratory bird is now limited only to killings when “the actor [is] engaged in an activity the object of which was to render an animal subject to human control.

The single most important activity in the entire MBTA (taking or attempting to take migratory birds), a prohibited activity that has been clear and straightforward for 100 years, is essentially now being limited only to hunters and their activities regarding migratory game birds.In fact this contrived new standard is contrary to every other previous Administration’s interpretation of the law. It is abhorrent for almost countless reasons. Primarily it reduces the MBTA’s effectiveness (or even usefulness) with respect to protecting migratory birds from almost any other (previously illegal) “take” activity.Here is a short list of dangers that already have or will continue to be adversely affecting all migratory birds. Oil spills can occur almost any time and in any place.

The Exxon Valdez grounding and subsequent oil spill in the Prince William Sound is just one good example.

Tens of thousands of protected migratory birds were either killed or severely oil covered in that incident. With the law and regulations in place before this Solicitor’s decision was announced the birds were illegally killed or injured under the “take” provisions of the MBTA and prosecutions against the culprits were successful. But under these new regulations any birds found in a similar situation were never taken at all, and therefore no person, corporation or entity would or could be prosecuted. That is criminal.Oil pits and seeps are another major problem. They are places where crude oil has, for whatever reason, been deposited on the land’s surface. This might be from a leak, a broken pipe, or any of several other causes. To birds in flight these areas look like bodies of water.

The Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) has, in the past, required these areas to be covered or otherwise subjected to remedial action, and fines have been levied. Under this new definition, every single dead or oil-soaked migratory bird would be an unprotected “thing.”Poison pits are one of my biggest pet peeves. I once spent eleven months investigating and successfully prosecuting a major pesticide company for the unintentional killing of hundreds if not thousands of migrating birds. Here is the official court summary of that case (U.S. vs FMC):“FMC operated a plant which manufactured various pesticides, requiring large amounts of wastewater which was stored in a pond. The pond attracted waterfowl during migration, some of which died. FMC attempted various measures to keep birds away from the pond. But, the Court held that FMC had engaged in an activity involving the manufacture of a highly toxic chemical and had failed to prevent this chemical from escaping into the pond and killing birds. The Court, therefore, held that this was sufficient to impose strict liability on FMC.”Future prosecutions like this would be dead in the (poison) water before they ever got started (pun definitely and sadly intended).High voltage electric likes are a deadly obstacle for migrating birds and local-living eagles, hawks and other birds of prey. In some areas (migratory bird historical migration routes) these lines are utterly deadly, accounting for thousands of deaths every spring and fall.
But once again this new and unwarranted definition would leave those deaths to go unpunished.

Wind turbines, the bane of landscapes in certain areas from the Atlantic to Pacific Oceans and from the Canadian to the Mexican borders, are no doubt one of the two primary reasons for this disgraceful change in the definition of “take” with respect to migratory bird protection. The owners/operators of these windmills have long lamented the fines imposed by the FWS for so many illegal bird deaths. After all, it cuts down on their overly massive profits.
The other probable cause for the definition change are the many solar collection establishments pock-marking our nation (especially in western states). Their immense displays of solar panels kill virtually every bird that has the audacity to fly over them. The workers at these solar firms even have a name for birds dead in the air as they are falling.

“There goes another ‘smoker.’ These operators definitely want to be let of the hook for their killings. Loss of profits, don’t you know.There are many other commercial killers of protected migratory birds, such as commercial fishing operations (set gill-nets kill countless diving birds), that often go unnoticed by most people. But they are still deadly, and they will also be “off the hook” if this new definition of migratory bird take is permitted to remain standing. It essentially reduces the MBTA to nothing more than only a bird hunting statute. The MBTA implements international treaties ratified by the U.S. Senate.

Any Administration action that would affect the MBTA should have been done only after consultation with Canada, Mexico, Russia and Japan, and the U.S. Senate. Instead this Department, or possibly this Administration, has unilaterally decreed that the definition of “take”now refers only to the sport hunting of migratory game birds, and offers no other protections to those same birds or any other migratory birds.In an unprecedented show of solidarity opposing this new interpretation, former career FWS professionals responsible for administering the MBTA joined with former political leaders from FWS and DOI, both Republican and Democrat and representing every Administration dating back to the 1970’s, signed a letter to Secretary Ryan Zinke on January 10, 2018 expressing strong opposition to this ill-conceived limitation of one of America’s most important and effective conservation laws. To date, this coalition of leaders has not received a response to this letter. 

If we want to really continue to protect our migratory bird resources, we cannot accept or condone the DOI’s actions. “The take of birds, eggs or nests occurring as the result of an activity,the purpose of which is not to take birds, eggs or nests, is not prohibited by the MBTA” simply cannot be allowed to become the operational norm of the USFWS.As the MBTA is one of the oldest and most important foundation laws protecting wildlife, the FWS Retirees Association ( urges all members (and all other interested persons) to express their concern and objection to this new legal interpretation to both Secretary Zinke and their Members of Congress, both House and Senate.

Len Lisenbee is the Daily Messenger’s Outdoor Columnist.
Contact him at lisenbee@frontiernet .net

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Remington Awarded Army Carbine Contract

Remington Awarded Army Carbine Contract
REM Defense
July 25, 2018
Huntsville, AL ‐ Remington is pleased to announce the recent award of a contract to supply the US Army with Commercial Off The Shelf (COTS) 5.56mm Carbines.

This is the second significant award for 5.56mm carbines to Remington by the US Army on behalf of key international allies. Remington Chief Executive Officer Anthony Acitelli said of the award: "Remington is proud of our continuing contribution to public safety and our nation's national security priorities worldwide. "We look forward to continuing our daily dedication to the design, production, and delivery of the highest quality military and law enforcement products for our public safety officers, warfighters, and allies alike."

Monday, July 23, 2018



  I'll add legal at the federal level so citizens can retain firearms and other rights otherwise restricted by law.  bpb

Budd is a former NY NRA Director and present board member.

JULY 25, 2018


            The questions come up about legalizing marijuana in New York and like many laws it has advocates and detractors.  There are many who believe the benefits of medical marijuana and have stated that they have merit.  It has shown to be helpful for easing pain and can aid in treating illnesses involving seizures. That is a truly positive approach.

            If opiates can be used as treatment for pain, why not the use of marijuana?  Medical experts claim that it is not as addictive as prescription pain pills and has fewer side effects and other disadvantages.  That could be a big plus.

            However, there is the question, often brought up by those in law enforcement, who believe that pot can be an entry drug for the opiates which cause thousands of deaths a year.  Also, many experts say that the smoking of weed is as harmful as tobacco which causes lung and associated diseases.

            There is a question about addiction as well and the controversy goes on.  Tobacco and alcohol are legal and they are addictive, so why not make marijuana legal as well?  Many politicians are on board for passing a law to make it legal.  They quote the economic benefits to the state because it can generate money in sales and other taxes.  That is a huge Albany motive.

            It appears that Governor Cuomo is giving serious consideration to making it legal.  After all, Canada has legalized it for recreational purposes, so why discriminate against New Yorkers who want to smoke a joint to relax and forget about reality for a little while?

            Like any argument with at least two sides, this one has several.  For one thing, it does affect the thinking process and those who use it to excess, like with drunkards and alcohol, it can have severe consequences.  The big question that pops to the front is what effect can it have if a person is high on the drug and decides to drive his car.  We really don’t need more impaired drivers on our highways.

            Many deaths are caused by drivers distracted by using cell phones because it takes their minds off the need to be constantly alert when on the road.  The chemicals in alcohol and drugs also cause major distractions and negative impacts on judgements and reflexes. Having the use of additional mind altering drugs can cause hundreds of more vehicle deaths.  Is it worth the risk? 

            It probably would be an excellent idea to do complete studies on the states that have legalized pot and sell it with the government restrictions and ability to increase the tax flow.  Do positive economic advantages overcome the negative results of drug legalization?

            Looking past the economic advantages for government spending because of increased revenue, it should also consider the financial costs of the potential down side.  First question would be to determine if it really leads to the use of opiates and other illegal drugs.  Does the buzz of pot prime the desire to try something stronger?

            Is it addictive in itself or lead to other drug addictions.  Treatment for any addiction like alcohol or currently illegal drugs is a big drain on society.  The current answer is “education and treatment.”  Both can be expensive and obviously has limits on effectiveness.  How many people go into rehab and then go back to the habit?  It would appear that the success rate is relatively low.

            Can we afford the cost of property damage and medical bills caused by the impaired driver’s desire for a little chemical “recreation?”   Those in favor of the legalization can claim that only a small percentage of drinkers and drug users will cause the problems.  How many of the negatives ae we willing to accept?

            Perhaps the argument could be to make higher penalties for those who break the law. Would it be enough discouragement to cause more people to drive sober?  For example, if a person gets a felony DWI, he is unable to purchase or own a firearm for the rest of his life even if a gun was not involved with the arrest.

            Usually after a period of time, the privilege of driving and owning a car can be reinstated.  How about increasing the penalty of a felony DWI or DUI to cause the person to never be able to get a driver’s license to own a vehicle?

Doesn’t that make more sense?

            Speaking of drugs and guns, nobody has any objections to criminals who sell, make or use illegal drugs becoming felons and losing Second Amendment rights.  Criminals don’t deserve to be gun owners.

            However when a person goes through a background check, the form 4473 asks “Are you an unlawful user or addicted to marijuana or other…( illegal drug)?’’

At the end of the end of the question it states.  “The use and possession of marijuana remains unlawful under federal law regardless of whether it has been legalized or decriminalized for medical or recreational purposes in the state where you reside.”

            Medical marijuana users in New York may not legally purchase or possess firearms.  It is highly possible if a person goes to Canada, smokes a joint, is stopped at the border and charged with using marijuana, they can have their guns confiscated and never be able to own one again under the federal law.

            This would make governor Cuomo very happy to have yet another reason to confiscate a citizen’s guns.  We could expect him to be happy to sign that law.  It would be a pleasure for him to be “tough on gun laws.”  It might even be a campaign promise.


Tuesday, July 17, 2018

NICS Retailer Day

Maybe a few of the anti firearm politicians will attend and learn how the process actually works instead of blowing smoke how lax the firearms business is. 
  Better yet lets run politicians names through NICS and see who qualifies to posses a firearm. LOL
Regards BPB  Licensed FFL 30+ years Veteran owned

Good Afternoon,
The FBI Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) Division’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Section is happy to announce our annual NICS Retailer Day.  This year’s event will consist of two separate days, Monday, September 17, 2018 and Tuesday, September 18, 2018, in Kansas City, Missouri, at Bass Pro located at 18001 Bass Pro Drive, Independence, MO 64055.
Topics to be discussed include but are not limited to:
·         A demonstration of a NICS background check being processed, including eligibility determinations.
·         A presentation to discuss the unique situation experienced by both the NICS Section and the firearms industry in recent years, and what we have done to manage and mitigate a relentless wave of increased volume and demand.
·         Immigrant and nonimmigrant information as related to the receipt or possession of a firearm.
·         Updates provided by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
·         Information about the NICS E-Check.
Due to the size of the venue, seating each day will be first come, first serve and will be limited to 80 seats.  The material being covered on each day will be the same; therefore, attendees are only permitted to attend one day.  Make your reservation(s) today by sending an e–mail to <NICS_EVENTS@FBI.GOV> with the names of all the attendees in your group, the best call back number, which date you will be attending, and your Federal Firearms License (FFL) number.  Registration will close on September 7, 2018.  This event is only open to FFLs and their employees.

We look forward to seeing you there!
The NICS Business Unit