If you go to Wisconsin Cartridge Corporation's website, there's a link on the front page titled "NOTICE REGARDING PRODUCT AVAILABILITY" [PDF]. The message of the document is pretty clear -- if you can't afford ammo anymore, you only have right wing paranoiacs to blame.
"Due to the increased demand for ammunition and components, we are currently behind on all handgun ammunition," writes President Scott Young. "You are welcome to place an order for as many rounds as you like, but orders of over 250 rounds or less get filled first. All orders over 250 rounds will be shipped when we get caught up. 233 ammunition is only a couple weeks backordered. 308 ammunition is likely 6-12 months. Any order over 100 rounds for 308 ammunition will likely never be filled. The same goes for 22-250 Rem."
What's the problem? Is there a shortage? Has Obama finally shut down the gun industry? No. The problem is panic-buying by gullible morons.
Due to hoarding of ammunition, you consumers have managed to raise the prices of ammunition and components 50 to 500 percent. You didn't even need the Government to impose taxes or bans. You did it all yourself.
"Please do not believe the rumors about bans or increased taxes on ammunition and firearms," reads the undated statement. "President elect Obama has enough on his plate dealing with wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the world economy, he doesn't have time to think about bans or taxes on ammunition and firearms." Clearly, Scott Young's making some decent coin here. But this is a small business outside the town of Friendship, Wisconsin, and they just don't have the capacity to keep up with the right wing rumor mill's craziness. An earlier statement referred to "people trying to buy ammunition by the pallet loads, believing the world is going to end in just a matter of days." Stupid right wing asses are great for the ammo business. You don't have to be a marketing genius to know that the recent Department of Homeland Security report on right wing extremism isn't bad for business either.
You've got to wonder about all the conservative bloggers, talk show hosts, and pundits who read about the dangers posed by white supremacists, abortion clinic bombers, and Timothy McVeigh-style survivalist gun freaks and think, "Holy crap! They're talking about me!" In trying to grab the mantle of victimhood, they decide it'd be a really great idea to identify themselves with like groups the Klan. And the result is clear, between freaking out about how Obama's going to come take their guns away and the DHS report targeting "Republicans," they've managed to screw the very people they're claiming to defend. Want a whole buttload of ammo to be ready for the big whatever-the-hell you think is coming? Too bad, you can't get it because rest of the wet-your-pants crowd got to it first. You snooze, you lose -- the big race war or fascist takeover or whatever it is you think is coming is just going to have to go on without you.
In the end, it's the right's own fears that screw the right winger. Practically addicted to fear, they're lost without something to panic over. After the Berlin Wall fell and death from above was no longer a realistic fear, they switched gears and decided to fear their own government. Bill Clinton and all Democrats were the new commies -- a "New World Order" would come to take your guns and your vote and pee on your flag and take a dump on your family Bible. Or something like that anyway -- I've got to admit, I never paid much attention to the ravings at the time.
Then Bush won, 9/11 happened, and the right freaked out about terrorism. Al Qaeda -- a bunch of religious nuts hiding out in caves in Afghanistan and Pakistan -- became the new commies. They were an "existential threat" to the US, meaning we were really supposed to believe that they were as capable of wiping the United States off the map as the old Soviet Union. Of course, this was insane -- there are people in Afghanistan who literally have no idea what electricity is. But the right needs to be afraid, so they became Blofeld to our James Bond.
Now the new commie is Barack Obama -- back to the president and the Democrats again -- terrorists are largely forgotten. They were always a stopgap anyway. Barack Obama's liberal hordes are coming to take your guns away, outlaw Christianity, and brainwash our children into becoming little Communists.
I've always felt the "we need guns to protect ourselves from the government" argument to be a little stupid. I don't care how much ammo you've got or what kind of rifles, when those Blackhawk helicopters come in over the horizon, the truth is that you might as well be unarmed. You're not going to shoot down gunships with your deer rifle. And, for the most part, these people addicted to fear are cowards. Faced with an actual revolution, 99.9% would be cheerleaders, not fighters. After all, how many of those cheerleaders for the Iraq war were young enough to sign up? And how many actually did? As Dick Cheney or Rush Limbaugh were to Vietnam, so people like Michelle Malkin or Jonah Goldberg were to Iraq. When the chips are down, you'll find your average wingnut hiding under the bed.
Still, scared people with way too much ammo is a disturbing development. I guess the best thing we can do is hope they realize they can't afford to fire a bullet, because their panic-buying has driven the prices up so high.
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