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Mg Ownership And Political Stability


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#1 Sgt

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 08:15 AM

This thread was created in reponse to some of the comments made about the future of MG investing. (see topic of "Wh 1928 on Strum"

What are the chances of a law passing that would prohibit MG buying or selling for civilians? Worse yet, do you think there could be a confiscation of all our NFA goodies? I've heard this idea hypothetically bantered about, but I wonder if it is likely. What exactly is keeping this from happening now? It seems that we comprise a relatively small counter culture, not exactly in the hunting crowd, nor in the typical benchrest crowd. We appear to be an easy political target. Of the general public, who wouldn't want to get the Mgs off the streets? So what has protected our interests, to date?

As far as collectors, I wouldn't be hit as bad as those with a room full of Colts. On the other hand, I shudder at the thought that a big chunk of my investment and enjoyment is at the whim of those shape-shifting politicians. Maybe I'm looking for a little peace of mind, a little confimation that such a senario may be possible, but unlikely.
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#2 Bill in VA

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 08:25 AM

I dunno. No flame intended, but for me, that sort of speculation is akin to debating how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. I mean, what if Congress and the people of the US suddenly decide to repeal the entire Second Amendment? Many of us would be out a boatload of money. And if they repealed the First Amendment, we couldn't complain about how we lost our shirts in money we've invested in guns over the years. The same could be said for those who've lost money in the stock market, real estate,Savings and Loans...the list goes on.
Constitutional Amendments can be repealed and added, market forces can make us filthy rich or dirt poor within minutes. The only way to not lose any money is to never spend it, but never spending it is the same as being broke.
I say: buy what you like, shoot your guns until you die, and forget about losing your investments. Worrying only makes you grow old faster, and growing old leads to dying.
My .02
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#3 JTinIN

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 08:34 AM

The other question is for the guy with a Thomson that he shoots, how much is it "worth" if they lock down transfers ... the answer is priceless as is the only Thomson that he will ever have for the rest of his life to shoot (i.e. how much would one pay to have a Thomson to shoot .... if it was the only one you ever were going to have).

Thus the recommendations to buy what you wish to shoot or collect and for most of us that will end up being more that we can really afford to pay and/or have "invested" as part of one's total package of "stuff" on this earth ... and pass on buying NFA just as an investment due to risk of something changing.
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#4 Lancer

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 09:06 AM

I think that the one aspect of NFA ownership that protects us the most is the one aspect that we all hate the most.........the high cost of the guns themselves and the paperwork involved in owning one. This keeps them off the streets and most importantly, out of the newspaper headlines.

If they ever take them, they'll do the way they did it in 86..........last minute add on to some obscure legislation with no debate.

If your looking for peace of mind don't own NFA.
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#5 bug

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 09:09 AM

There are all kinds of risks in life. Your concerns represent one that is near and dear to our hearts. One of the things that will keep us out of harms way is the NFA registration process. I believe we are the "Poster Children" for gun control. The "antis" would love to see all firearms handled as NFA items. Once they get the 50 BMG guns categorized as DDs, they could gradually add handguns, assault rifles, sniper rifles etc.

I very much doubt that outright confiscation will happen. Even a freeze on transfers is very unlikely. A "tax increase" levied at the time they add more firearms to the NFA pile (to cover the added burden) seems like a distinct possibility though. Form 3 transfers $200, Form 4 transfer $2,000, 5320+ $100 etc. The NFA had one purpose and that was to keep weapons out of the hands of the general (read peons) public by making legal ownership cost prohibitive.

but, I think we are safe for the forseeable future. As long as DEM/REP mix stays near 50%, then gun control is an issue best avoided by pols.

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#6 LIONHART

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 09:22 AM

It could very well occur. Question is, would YOU turn them in for confiscation? Same holds true for any other type of Firearm too. None of us are safe, and IF such legislation were to pass, I'm afraid that many would hand them over in fear of prosecution.JMHO, FWIW.
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#7 bug

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 09:35 AM

Lionhart, that sounds good on paper but if I'm in my home with my wife, children, grandchildren etc and the SWAT team is outside, they get the guns unloaded and cased. I know you know what they're capable of.

Now if I knew that they were coming and I could somehow demonstrate to them that the guns had been previously destroyed as a jesture of good will well.........
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#8 21 smoker

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 12:17 PM

I don`t quite see it the way some respected members do,..I understand your various points of view,but can`t see a lot of this happening...the VP Dick Cheney is a NFA owner and appears to relish this community...`a stroke of a pen.....`that stroke was performed by some pretty dishonest demoncraps the likes of which were run out of office last election if I recall...the possibilities are endless I suppose,but this is still a free country and worth fighting for...if we stay vigilant we will always enjoy the benifits of NFA ownership and this knowledgable forum... wink.gif
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#9 Dirk67

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 05:23 PM

Posted By: Dan Shea
Date: 6/1/05 17:19

OK, now it is getting deeper. Another long time Class 3 collector has been contacted about his registered Thompson, that was US Property marked and came from the Reno PD. CID told him they were coming by to pick it up, and would leave him a receipt. He told them to talk to his lawyer, called the NRA, got a lawyer and put the wall up, things are OK right now...

But, this is going to get a lot deeper. I suggest that we get the email tree going on this asap.... I have briefed my lawyers and the National Firearms Act Trade & Collectors Association on this problem, and we need to start getting this pointed to Congress, as well as making all gun owners aware of this.... think they won't go after everything that is US Prop marked if they get away with stealing just one legitimately owned gun?

Email me if you get contacted, I will forward your info to NFATCA

Dan put this up on Bowers. The reason I mention it is how many of us own us property marked weapons. Another way that the government can/wants to limit the amount of gun owners of mgs. Just a thought.

DAW
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#10 colt21a

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 08:25 PM

i have personally been involved in three major case's in the past 24 year's...it would curl a bald man's single hair.. oh! and the info is sealed in d.c.

and every major group was involved...

it cost me probably $100,000.00 plus.....and let's say a overnight stay..

i can guarantee you,no matter how right you are, you are wrong....and nobody will come to your aid BUT YOU!

these case's have been buried for a long time..and record's cleared.....and yes it was on major t.v.national...coverage and paper's..

and later a book was written about the partie's..."double
deal" by avon book's...

look,for the picture of corbitt holding the belted m-60 ammo!!

{maybe someday i can write my story}

anyway's protect yourselve's.. i thought i was well insulated and protected......WRONG!!

also read the book,very interesting read!!
some of the player's are now deceased..............so i can talk!

take care,ron
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#11 Sgt. Fox

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 08:37 PM

Seems to me that if they did decide to take away your MGs with a stroke of the pen, that would qualify as a "taking" under the takings clause and the feds would at least be obligated to pay you fair market value for your newly reclassified contraband.

Surely, it would still suck big time, but at least you wouldn't lose $100K at the same time.
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#12 DC Chris

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 08:49 PM

I doubt that they would pull a ban/turn in. This requires money, time, could be a PR issue and opens up a potential mess of lawsuits.

Simply lock transfers and when you die or no longer want it - the gun is destroyed. Starve the market by passive laws.

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#13 LIONHART

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 08:59 PM


QUOTE
and the feds would at least be obligated to pay you fair market value for your newly reclassified contraband.


laugh.gif laugh.gif

Be a cold day in hell before they did that!
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#14 junglewalk

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 10:17 PM

DC Chris's outline of , 'locking transfers' is the way it will prbably go, if it were to occur.....
During MG Shoots here at KCR, we have present and former MG owners from Canada (with-out mg), who warn us of what happened to them in the 'Leaf' country to the north.....
They had a NFA law similar to ours, until their parament, in the 80's(?), killed it, then put a 'lock' on transfers. Owners of MGs had 30 days to sell/transfer, and when the deadline came, that MG stayed with that one owner till death; then the gun was destroyed.
This is what 3 old-timers from Canada tell me, when they visit KCR. One still owns a M3 Greasegun up there....I never had any reason to think otherwise, but if there is any Canadians out there who can correct this, please say so..... ohmy.gif
...............................................jw
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#15 TD.

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 10:20 PM

Today, I would worry more about the financial aspect of Machine Gun ownership than Machine Gun prohibition. I think everything is at an even keel right now. Of course, things could change one way or another overnight. I do believe that the chances are better that the 1986 Hughes Amendment will be repealed or modified than Machine Guns being outlawed. I based this solely on money. Machine Guns are now big business and bring big prices. I believe you could sell 10,000 1928A1/M1A1 Thompson’s at $5,000 apiece in the matter of a few weeks. The guns are available (overseas). The purchase price is very cheap (think retail price of the currently offered parts kits). Do the math; money makes the world go round. There are also many Colts that could be imported or freed up for sale. This would have an impact on price, but admittedly, probably not as drastic as the military guns. New manufacture – the value of West Hurley’s Thompson’s would drop like a rock. If I were in the market for another Thompson today, these are the things I would worry about because of today’s prices (that seem to be still rising - again, think money).
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#16 Z3BigDaddy

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 10:26 PM

QUOTE (DC Chris @ Jun 1 2005, 08:49 PM)
I doubt that they would pull a ban/turn in. This requires money, time, could be a PR issue and opens up a potential mess of lawsuits.

Simply lock transfers and when you die or no longer want it - the gun is destroyed. Starve the market by passive laws.

Yeppers that would work... You would still "own" your valuable investment, just can't transfer it. I don't think it is in the works now personally, but who knows what the future may bring... If they can ban a gun just by calibre then i suppose most anything is possible....
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#17 LIONHART

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 11:17 PM

QUOTE
Machine Guns are now big business and bring big prices.


But why? Who or what is driving up these insane prices?

QUOTE
Yeppers that would work... You would still "own" your valuable investment


Would no longer have any value, if such could no longer be transfered.
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#18 Z3BigDaddy

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 11:46 PM

In their eyes you would still have your investment, so no loss.... I live on the river and I have a deed from way back that goes into the water. The waterways here have just been declared public property up to the high water mark... I am now going to have to pay a $20.00 fee to step from my property into the water, and I cannot stop people from trespassing on my property to get to the water.... I say my investment has been compromised, they say I still own my house and property and the use has just been altered a bit and not to my detriment.... Oh by the way I still have to pay taxes on the property I really no longer own.... The guverment moves in strange an wunderrful ways.....
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#19 Bruce V 21/28

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Posted 02 June 2005 - 09:05 AM

This has most likley been beat to death but when we "gave" the Government the power to tax us and the power to enforce the collection of those taxes we gave up ALL of our personal property. WE / YOU don't really "own" anything; we are renting everything from the Government. Don't beleive me, try not paying your taxes, either local, state, or federal; the Government will come and TAKE ALL of your personal property if the tax bill is big enough.

Z 3, Your property? (land) you don't own it either, if "they" find a better use for it other than you living on it it, is theirs for the takeing. Sure there will be court procedings but "they" will end up with it. A local city Government here in AL. just did that to some families south of Birmingham. Government took the property from the private citizens then "gave" it to a developer to put in a WalMart. It seems that the City felt that the WalMart would generate more tax revenue than the property taxes paid by the land owners therefor it was in the "best intrest" of the citizens.
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#20 October1971

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Posted 02 June 2005 - 08:45 PM

I was the one who wrote about them trying to take an M14 in 1974. I've been reading the threads on the political/financial concerns with great interest, as well as the threads on the govt trying to take the U.S. Property Thompsons.

Some thoughts from a guy who got his first mg in 1963 (42 years ago) and who registered 18 NFA items in the amnesty.

In no particular order of importance

1. I once read a pro-gun article that said ALL GUN OWNERS need to use the
NATO DOCTRINE..."an attack on ANY one group is to be considered an
attack on US ALL."

2. I'm planning to join, in some fashion, the new NFA association which Dan
Shea is involved in.

3. While everyone of us on the boards have varying degrees of experience
and varying degrees of knowledge I urge ANYONE who is actively involved
in a potential govt confiscation attempt or ANY legal action regarding
firearms-related issues to seek the best LEGAL COUNSEL he/she can
possibly afford. We can all offer our 2 cents and our "theories" but only
the actual person involved will feel the effects of the final outcome.

4. I agree with one of Winston Churchill's quotations: "Democracy is the
worst form of government.... except for all the others."

5. In addition to the unknown factors affecting the value of stock market
investments (oil prices, inflation, etc.) we gun owners also face the
unknowns of gun grabber types and the politiicians who are against us.
So, to those who write in to ask if they should "invest" in automatic
weapons, you can look at it from both sides.

For example, when I got out of the insurance business, I found that my retirment plan which was tied to the financial markets, was starting to tank.

And even during the last 34 years as an SOT dealer/collector, my NFA investments have ALWAYS outperformed the stock market, even in good stock market years.

Can you lose it all with the stroke of a pen? I absolutely believe it could happen based upon the right politcal climate. Does that make me want to get out of the business? No way.

Yes, they could pass Canadian-type laws where you could keep the MG but couldn't sell it. They may SAY that doesn't infringe on your rights to own them. But for all practical purposes it makes the value drop to about "0."

I tend to agree with those posting who say the govt would more likely use FEES AND TAXES to gradually erode the ownership of MGs.

But I also know that there are people out there who will wait 10 years, 20 years, a lifetime... for the right moment to strike. They are just as patient as terrorists who will wait a decade before acting out their evil. (The same ones that Smoker21 referred to.)

Also, if the anti-gunners thought the public would support an MG ban or confiscation, they would do it in a heartbeat!

So far, I believe their efforts will be directed where they think they have the best chance of affecting the largest group of guns ie handguns, assault rifles, etc. They probably believe they could be more successful going after guns that are in the headlines every day. BUT...if successful in regulating handguns and rifles out of existance, you better believe they would then turn their attention full time to come after NFA.


In reviewing some of the NFA 34 history I believe it is safe to say that the Congress wanted to outright BAN mgs in private hands in 1934. And just as a city atty or county atty "advises" his employer on legal matters, the Atty General of the U.S. told Congress essentially that "you can regulate them, you can tax them, but under the 2nd amendment you can't BAN them." Hence, a $200 transfer tax on a $175 TSMG was a "punitive tax" on ownership. But Attys General and Congressmen come and go and things change constantly. It could be a whole different ball game in the future.

Many years back, a South Florida politician suggested that with inflation, the transfer tax on a mg ought to be $1796.27.

(For those of you who are about to write back and say don't give them any ideas, by posting stuff like this, BELIEVE ME, they already have all of these ideas in their SOP manuals. They will use "divide and conquor" they will use
" fees and taxes" in addition to actual attempts at banning.They will use tragedies, gun accidents, lying media, anything to further their cause)

That is one reason why the appointment of pro-gun Supreme Court Justices may be the ONLY answer over the long haul (10, 20, 30, years etc.) We have to realize that if, and when, there is finally a "2nd amendment case" before the U.S. Supreme Court, either the gun owners will win, or if the court rules against us, we will be starting down the path of eventual total loss of firearms ownership.

Look at the Street Sweeper DD thing. S. Brady and friends figured they could divide gun owners and get the awful looking street sweepers off the streets, because there were only around 18,000 total units produced from the three companies involved, and they correctly assumed that most gun owners wouldn't get involved because most gun owners had no interest in these particular kind of shotguns.

Back to whether to "buy or sell" due to the possible threat. I've noticed that every few years or so, there is some kind of political threat to gun owners, whether it be Title one or Title 2 guns. And each time this happened with mg's, I found about 50% of the gun owners were scared into "selling" while the other 50% were scared that they BETTER BUY WHILE YOU CAN GET THEM." Same thing with Assault weapon ban. In a way, it's like musical chairs. When the BAN comes, will you be holding something worth zero or will you have sold it for big bucks just prior to the ban?

What is of REAL CONCERN right now is that during a "relatively pro-gun" administration and Congress, etc. (at least as compared to the Clinton era) it does sound like there is someone somewhere initiating these latest attempts to get the mgs. I agree with the post who said we need to find out where the "marching orders came from." And if you think all your pro-gun politicians won't flip flop if they thought it politically advantageous, then you are really naive. So it is IMPERATIVE that we never stop letting them know our wishes, no matter how many battles we think we have won. "The price of freedom IS eternal vigilance"

Finally, I'm going to make some statements that may not sit too well with everyone, but they are just my own personal feelings:

While in college in NC in 1963 I became a life member of the NRA. Yes, the organization has had its ups and downs and internal fighting. (comments run from "...they sold us MG owners down the river" to "...there's a few big whigs at the top making obscene money off of the members." But just as Winston Churchill compared democracy to all the "other govts."the fact remains that since 1871 the NRA has consistently fought for gun owners and waged some major political battles for us. That doesn't mean I agree with everything they do or say. Do you agree with everything your governor, president, town commissioner does? Of course not.

If the U.S. does have 90 million gun owners and there are only 3 or 4 million NRA members, think what the organization could to with 20 to 25 million members.

NOTE: I am not throwing this out as a discussion topic on the NRA. I won't be debating with anyone about whether the NRA is good or bad. I'm just pointing out that it is a "numbers thing." And they are an organized group which, on balance, has helped rather than hurt the overall gun-owning group. Take a look sometime at their win/lose record on their support of pro-gun elections throughout the U.S. The anti-gunners are livid with jealousy, envy, rage, at the successes of the NRA from local state representatives to governors to Congress and the presidency.


Lastly, this one may step on some toes also: Many people say you shouldn't be a "single issue" voter. Other topics like abortion, religion, etc. must be part of the equation.

Well I say if you really want to help us, and all future generations, be free to own guns, any kind of guns, you better become a SINGLE ISSUE VOTER.

And if you don't vote, don't contribute, and don't join (in some way), then don't complain. Because YOU are the problem and YOU will be responsible for bringing all the rest of down with you.

Yes, I'm a recent member of the board, but you will never find a more determined pro-gun and especially pro-NFA individual.

I enjoy reading everyone's posts and I especially thank Dan Shea for all he's done in the field of research, unearthing info on NFA matters, and for the political stance he takes regarding our mutual area of interest.








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