Mass Shooting Casualties in America as of October 2



Figure 1: Cumulative sum of mass shooting casualties, beginning in 1982M08; deaths (red), wounded (pink). October observation for data through 10/2. Source: Mother Jones.

This graph is for this commenter.



Figure 2: Cumulative sum of mass shooting casualties, beginning in 1982M08; deaths inflicted by non-Muslims (dark red), wounded inflicted by non-Muslims (pink), deaths inflicted by Muslims (dark blue), wounded inflicted by Muslims (light blue). October observation for data through 10/2. Source: Mother Jones and author’s calculations. Tabulations of religion of perpetrator by author.

The database underpinning these graphs provides some incomplete information on types of weapons used, and demographic breakdown of the perpetrators.

Update 9PM Pacific:
Reader Dave asserts gun control had no impact in Australia. See below.


Source: Phys.org.

121 thoughts on “Mass Shooting Casualties in America as of October 2

  1. PeakTrader

    When there were fewer gun control laws decades ago, there were fewer mass shootings. Something else changed in society to cause more mass shootings.

    Reply
    1. pgl

      Excuse me but the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban expired in 2004 and the 1993 Brady Bill has been decimated. To even suggest we have effective gun control now is beyond absurd. Yes we did not have these gun control laws back in say the 1950’s so life today is a lot more dangerous than when I was a kid. Which is why we need more effective gun control.

      Reply
      1. PeakTrader

        So, you’re saying gun laws are more lax today than the 1950s and that’s why there are more mass shootings.

        Reply
        1. mike v

          You can say each of those things separately and not suggest a causation.

          1. it is true that gun laws are more relaxed today than they were in the early 2000s and gun laws were relaxed a lot in 1986.
          2. it is true that there are more mass shootings today than in the early 2000s.

          Reply
        2. mike shupp

          Memory says there were under 200 million Americans in the 1950s, versus about 315 million today. Just supposin’, possibly, maybe, d’you think that could be a factor?

          I mean … I’m not pretending to be a data scientist here, but …

          Reply
          1. Menzie Chinn Post author

            mike shupp: The pattern remains similar, even if normalized. See for instance this post.

            You could’ve checked this for yourself since the data on shootings is at the cited link, and St. Louis FRED has the population data, and there is open source spreadsheet programs to do the calculation…

      2. mike v

        Life today is not more dangerous. That’s a myth that everyone on the political spectrum peddles for their own gain. Guns need to be treated more seriously, and there are meaningful restrictions that would reduce deaths, but overall crime/homicides have decreased tremendously since the 1990s.

        It should be noted that the idiotic “more guns = less crime” mantra is not supported by this fact because there are fewer gun owners today than ever, but gun owners today own many many more guns than they used to. In other words, more guns are hoarded by fewer and fewer people.

        Reply
    2. mike v

      I see no evidence that there are more gun laws/restrictions today than there were decades ago, but if you have something to support that, I’d be interested to see it.

      Firearms Owners’ Protection Act of 1986 greatly reduced gun restrictions, and then laws in the 1990s increased restrictions on certain firearms, but some restrictions expired in the mid 2000s.

      Throughout the 2010s, state agressively reduced gun restrictions, and firearm background checks have more than doubled since the early 2000’s.

      Reply
  2. 2slugbaits

    Sometimes I wonder if assault rifles aren’t a lot like SUVs in some respects. People who are perfectly cautious, defensive drivers when behind the wheel of the family sedan or compact car suddenly become an aggressive menace on the road when they get behind the wheel of a large SUV. Maybe the same thing happens when people go from using their grandpappy’s old .410 shotgun for rabbit and pheasant hunting and upgrade to an aggressive looking semi-automatic assault rifle. It changes them. At least that’s been my experience with friends and family members.

    Reply
    1. Bruce Hall

      Solution: all SUVs must be limited to old women and equipped with 4-cylinder engines of less than 150 hp. SUV control now!

      Reply
  3. joseph

    PeakTrader is trolling, as usual. The best way to annoy him is to completely ignore him. Like a small child, he doesn’t like be ignored. Any response is a reward that provokes more trolling.

    Reply
  4. Dave

    This chart perfectly demonstrates that a US citizen is roughly 2,000 times more likely to be killed in motor vehicle accident compared to a mass shooting. Lets ban all the cars

    Reply
    1. baffling

      that is small consolation to the 59 people who lost their life, and the hundreds others who were injured the other night. from a type of weapon that has no reason to exist other than for the purpose of mass loss of life. you can explain to the parents of a lost child in that event, they were simply unlucky. wrong place, wrong time. nothing our society could do to change this outcome. further, you have no interest in keeping such an event from repeating itself again.

      Reply
      1. Dave

        Yes, the loss of life is tragic.

        If your goal is to reduce gun homicides, should you direct scarce resources to reducing the relatively rare mass shooting events?

        Or perhaps address the shockingly high gun homicide rates within inner cities?

        Economics is a dismal science

        Reply
        1. Lyle

          Let along the 20,000 gun suicides a year. Guns in general now kill more folks than cars, which is a switch. I do sort of wonder if in the end the Las Vegas event will be found to be a spectacular way of committing suicide, attracting a lot of attention to the event.

          Reply
      2. Dave

        @baffling

        “That is small consolation…”

        Really, small consolation? So 7,000 fewer gun homicides per year is small?

        Reply
        1. Robj

          Good thing the gunman wasn’t a Mooslem or the “right” would be banging their heads on the concrete calling for “extreme measures.”
          Since he appears to be an old white male gun worshipper. . . no problemo. Sad! When did the deer start wearing kevlar vests, by the way, so we need armour piercing rounds and automatic machine guns? (And, yes, we also should address Chicago shootings.)

          Reply
  5. CoRev

    Not my passion, but here’s an interesting counter point: http://www.dailywire.com/news/21868/las-vegas-death-toll-happens-monthly-gun-free-joseph-curl?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_content=062316-news&utm_campaign=benshapiro
    “GUN CONTROL? The Las Vegas Death Toll Happens Every MONTH In Chicago
    The murder toll in Las Vegas on Sunday makes it the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.

    Know what they call that in Chicago? June.

    Actually, there were 84 murders in Chicago, just in June, according to DNAinfo.com, which keeps a running tally.

    There were 76 murders in July, 50 in August.

    And there were 59 murders in Chicago last month, so the death toll in Las Vegas — again, the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history — was just a normal September there….”

    Just wondering, what gun control laws not already on the books in Chicago do you recommend? If they do not work in one of the most restrictive locales in the US, what are you proposing?

    Reply
    1. mike v

      1. There is no “point” to counter. The graphs are merely presenting raw data, and you are looking for a political argument.
      2. Even if there was a “point” to counter (which there isn’t), saying there were “murders in Chicago!” is not a counter point. It is an irrelevant, obnoxious, trite right-wing talking point.
      3. Trying to “prove” that gun restrictions don’t work because Chicago has a lot of murders is a weak-minded line of reasoning for many reasons. Most notably because there is a lot of data on how guns flow from neighboring low gun-restriction states Indiana and Wisconsin. There are guns everywhere in the relatively isolated communities where the killing happens.
      4. Chicago is ranked 8th on top homicide rates for U.S. cities – not even top 5.

      It is literally clockwork that an obnoxious person brings up Chicago murders as a “counterpoint”, even though it is not a “counterpoint” to anything. It is a weird, intellectually-weak talking point globed onto by a weird, intellectually-weak group who can’t reason or think for themselves.

      Love, proud 10 year Chicagoan.

      Reply
      1. CoRev

        MikeV, then answer the question, what improved law would change the Chicago situation? If its confiscation, then its a constitutional issue. Change the constitution. If you can not answer the question re: what law(s) works better than the already restrictive laws of Chicago, then it is you and your ilk that are the: ” weird, intellectually-weak talking point globed onto by a weird, intellectually-weak group who can’t reason or think for themselves.”

        Why is this issue nearly all emotion and little logic? Please tell us how guns kill people without a person pulling the trigger. With the illogical thinking behind these gun control claims, perhaps the best solution is to remove triggers or trigger fingers.

        There’s just no sense!

        Reply
  6. Bruce Hall

    I’ve read that mass shootings are done primarily by white males (females of any race are seldom the perpetrators). This is true: https://www.statista.com/statistics/476456/mass-shootings-in-the-us-by-shooter-s-race/

    However, this needs to be looked at in light of this: https://www.kff.org/other/state-indicator/distribution-by-raceethnicity/?currentTimeframe=0&sortModel=%7B%22colId%22:%22Location%22,%22sort%22:%22asc%22%7D

    More people are injured in white cars than yellow cars. I wonder why?

    Now I only bring this up because, while these types of mass murders… whether bombs, bullets, or flying into buildings… are horrific, one needs to ask what costs we are willing to accept to reduce or eliminate the risks in life?

    There are over 250 million cars and trucks in the U.S. and the annual death toll is around 30,000. So the death rate from motor vehicles is about 0.0120% per motor vehicle. By improving roads and traffic control systems and vehicle impact and avoidance systems… and insuring that unlicensed and untested drivers are removed from the roads, that number could probably be reduced to 1/10 of the current rate. That would involve significantly increasing taxes and vehicle costs, but the annual death toll could be reduced to 3,000; however, that would take a couple of decades because older vehicles are still on the road an average of 11 years.

    There are about 300 million firearms in the U.S. and the annual death toll from all firearms is about 11,000. So the death rate from firearms is about 0.0036% per firearm. (I use the number of vehicles and number of firearms as the divisors because their total numbers are different) By improving licensing, technology to restrict gun usage to the owner, and policing actions (more patrols on foot and in cars plus aggressive elimination of urban gangs) the number of firearm homicides could be reduced to 1/10 of the current rate. That would involve significantly increasing taxes and firearms cost, but the annual death rate could be reduced to just over 1,000; however, that would take many decades because older firearms can last for decades.

    Now the argument will be that vehicle deaths are accidents and firearm deaths are intentional. That’s true, but the result is the same: death. So, what are the costs we are willing to incur to significantly reduce those deaths. First you must recognize that increasing the cost of new firearms and vehicles will be a significantly greater hardship among lower income earners. Would that be racist? Would that be elitist?

    But wait, there’s more. Suicides by gun outnumber murders by gun two to one. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/suicide.htm . So it would appear that the first step in reducing gun deaths should be taking guns away from anyone deemed suicidal. But that might be costly. Who does the screening and what are the objective criterion for identifying a suicidal person? Would there be a violation of that person’s right to privacy? Well, maybe we have to set aside that 2/3 of the firearm deaths for awhile.

    Then what should we do about those shootings? Well, perhaps we should recognize that handguns are the weapon of choice for 70% of the 1/3 of the deaths that are caused by firearms. https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.-2011/tables/expanded-homicide-data-table-8 So, would it be economically reasonable to address how to take away personal handguns from people? After all, you can’t just wait a century for higher prices and more complex technology to address the fact that it is not semi-automatic rifles that are the weapon of choice for most murders. But wait, there is the nagging problem of the Supreme Court: http://constitution.findlaw.com/amendment2.html
    The Court reasoned that this right is fundamental to the nation’s scheme of ordered liberty, given that self-defense was a basic right recognized by many legal systems from ancient times to the present, and Heller held that individual self-defense was “the central component” of the Second Amendment right. Moreover, a survey of the contemporaneous history also demonstrated clearly that the Fourteenth Amendment’s Framers and ratifiers counted the right to keep and bear arms among those fundamental rights necessary to the Nation’s system of ordered liberty.

    But the annual deaths from someone abusing a semi-automatic rifle (the scary looking ones) are several hundred. !!! We must take away Constitutional rights, increase the cost of firearms prohibitively, and raise taxes to cover massive control systems!!! It’s the only economical thing to do!!!

    I’m not making light of the deaths from evil people who use firearms. I am pointing out that the focus may be out of focus … and taking firearms away may be far more difficult … and costly … than you might imagine. And then the problem of firearm deaths will not be eliminated.

    Reply
    1. Menzie Chinn Post author

      Bruce Hall: Haven’t we already made something of a trade-off? I think it’s illegal for a US citizen to posses a tac-nuke. And at least you have to get a special license to own a machine gun made after 1986 and/or anti-tank weapon.

      Reply
    2. 2slugbaits

      Bruce Hall After all, you can’t just wait a century for higher prices and more complex technology to address the fact that it is not semi-automatic rifles that are the weapon of choice for most murders.

      But they are the weapon of choice for mass murderers. The kind of casualties we saw in Vegas would not be possible with a handgun from that distance. And you can’t fire off enough rounds with a handgun without having to reload. And handguns are not very accurate beyond 25 yards. And for lots of obvious reasons you cannot convert a semi-automatic handgun into a fully automatic weapon. Handguns are responsible for garden variety murders and crimes of passion. Rifles, and especially assault rifles, tend to be the weapon of choice for most mass murderers because rifles have a lot greater potential. That doesn’t mean we haven’t had mass murderers use handguns, but it’s clearly the inferior choice if the goal is to kill as many people as possible.

      I see no reason why we shouldn’t be able to restrict the size of gun magazines. I see no reason why we shouldn’t be able to restrict the sale or possession of long rifles. In a lot of states you aren’t even allowed to hunt with long rifles, you must use shotguns with slugs if you want to deer.

      As to the SCROTUM…I mean SCOTUS ruling, since when has it been legal to own an M2 machine gun? Or a 155mm howitzer? Or a recoilless rifle? And the 2nd Amendment (proof that the Founders had feet of clay) does not guarantee gun owners the right to buy ammo. So ammo could and should be severely controlled.

      Reply
      1. Bruce Hall

        2slug, thanks for being a prime example of that which I wrote… focusing on the dramatic anomaly rather than the real problem of gun violence by criminals in cities such as Chicago where more people are murdered each year on the south side alone than all of the mass shootings by rifles across the entire U.S.

        Seriously, how many people would walk around with a 50 cal. rifle (even if they could carry it)? It’s a problem that the anti-police elements in certain communities with the cooperation of certain political allies have made cleaning up the problems much more difficult in the past decade. Come out and say it, “White males are the problem.” Say it even if you know that the real problem is black and Latino gangs in urban areas. https://infogram.com/Black-34991937313

        I’ve given you real data; you’ve responded with unfounded generalities.

        Reply
        1. Anonymous

          2slugs shows the ignorance of the average gun control advocate: ” And handguns are not very accurate beyond 25 yards. And for lots of obvious reasons you cannot convert a semi-automatic handgun into a fully automatic weapon. ”

          1) Accuracy is not necessary when firing into a large dense crowd several hndred yards at distance. If he used a bump fire trigger he already gave up accuracy for rapid fire. Hand guns bullets can easily reach the several hundred yard range with killing velocity.
          2) Semi-automatic hand guns are often converted to assault rifles. The most common calibers for these rifles are indeed hand gun calibers.

          For someone working the logistical side of DoD, you already knew this. Your political views have over ridden your own knowledge and logic.

          Reply
      2. Dave

        Mass shootings are sensational and grab the headlines. Truth is, mass shootings are rare and unpredictable. It would be a waste of resources to try to enact laws to reduce mass shootings. The goal should be to reduce the overall homicide rate.

        Gun bans in the UK, Ireland and Australia had no impact on the murder rates. None.

        The Real Reason Gun Control Will Never Work:

        Poverty has a greater correlation to violent crime than access to firearms. Education and poverty are directly linked. In short, we don’t have a gun problem in the United States, we have a cultural problem.

        Reply
        1. pgl

          9/11 was a rare and unpredictable event as well. Come to my city (NYC) and tell people that we can disband TSA. I’m sure everyone would agree.

          Reply
          1. baffling

            dave, are rare and unpredictable events a reason to enact massive societal and economic change? or not?

    3. mike v

      You conveniently forget the context that vehicle deaths – measured in deaths per million miles traveled or deaths per population – have reduced by over 70% since the 1970s when safety regulations (seatbelts, visible break lights, anti-lock breaks, etc.) were introduced.

      Reply
      1. Bruce Hall

        Mike V,

        You conveniently forgot the context that gun deaths (murders) have dropped over the past several decades and – measured by actual guns owned – the rate has dropped dramatically.

        Uh, wouldn’t the increased number of vehicles generally lead to more miles traveled? So, if guns were becoming a bigger problem, wouldn’t more guns contribute to an increase in murders rather than a decrease.

        I think the point was fairly made without additional complications.

        Reply
  7. PeakTrader

    It’s tragic there are cowards willing to kill innocent people. Nonetheless, Americans have the right to deter and defend against enemies, foreign and domestic.

    “…when France fell to Nazi invasion in 1940, the New York Times reported that the French were deprived of rights such as free speech and firearm possession just as the Germans had been…No wonder that in 1941, just days before the Pearl Harbor attack, Congress reaffirmed Second Amendment rights and prohibited gun registration.”

    Reply
        1. 2slugbaits

          PeakTrader FYI. The bad guys in “Red Dawn” were not fascists; they were Soviets. And it’s a complete fantasy to think that teenagers and middle aged super patriots with beer guts and their .223 semi-automatic assault rifles are going to hold off a modern army. That’s just some right-wing wet dream. You’ve been listening to too much Mark Levin.

          Reply
          1. PeakTrader

            2slugbaits, there are many definitions of fascist and the Soviets fit that category. Why would the Nazis take away gun rights from the German and French people? A hundred million Americans with guns can do a lot of damage to an occupation force. I guess, you would wave the white flag.

    1. Ulenspiegel

      ““…when France fell to Nazi invasion in 1940, the New York Times reported that the French were deprived of rights such as free speech and firearm possession just as the Germans had been…No wonder that in 1941, just days before the Pearl Harbor attack, Congress reaffirmed Second Amendment rights and prohibited gun registration.”

      OMG.

      1) Please learn history. Citing a wrong statement of the NYT is no substitute.

      2) I have to assume that you did not serve. Only complete idiots assume that a few guns/rifles would have made any difference in 1940. Against well trained soldiers, amateurs with rifles are a joke.

      Reply
  8. PeakTrader

    According to FBI statistics, the U.S. homicide rate was steady between 4 and 5 per 100,000 between 1950 and 1965. It then began to climb reaching 10 per 100,000 in 1975, stayed between 8 and 10 till 1991, and then declined to 4.5 in 2014 – back to 1950 to 1965 rates. I suspect, illegal drug use caused higher homicide rates in the late ’60s to early ’90s to a large extent.

    Reply
  9. Anonymous

    Why plot cum versus rate? It looks like there is some curvature but hard to see. Why not plot rate before and after the law change that concerns you (for the whole period)? Just a couple bars. [This is not even a debate point. It probably helps your hypothesis. But I can’t tell.]

    I would population adjust, of course.

    Not sure what the point is of looking at mass shootings as opposed to general homicides. Seems like such a minor death rate. Which are you looking to control?

    There are likely many other factors changing over time other than gun laws also. Demographics, culture, etc. I think it is going to be hard to isolate one cause.

    I wonder what is considered a mass shooting. Was the Beltway sniper considered a mass shooting or not (attacks spaced out). What about the BLM killer in Dallas? [This isn’t even an argument, just a methodology question.]

    If the concern is about certain kinds of weapons, how about just showing the amount of kills from those weapons changed over time. (Probably even helps your case since they were more available after the laxer laws, even if minimal difference in efficacy.)

    Reply
  10. Dave

    @baffling

    I’d like to stay on topic (mass shootings). If the objective is to reduce gun homicides, start with the biggest bucket: Inner city gun homicide.

    Reply
    1. baffling

      dave, many homicides caused by a single shooter, versus many homicides caused by many independent shooters, are two different problems. most likely requiring different solutions. so our topic has been mass shootings by a single shooter. lets stay on topic, as you say. inner city gun homicide is different from a single shooter many homicide situation. but i am a fan of reducing both, not choosing either/or.

      Reply
  11. Wintery Knight

    Helpful correctives to the misinformation in the original post:

    http://freebeacon.com/issues/australia-sees-spike-in-gun-crime-despite-outright-ban/

    http://thefederalist.com/2015/09/03/the-australian-gun-ban-conceit/

    Useful academic books for those who are interested in actual studies rather than counts of gun deaths that DO NOT EXCLUDE SUICIDES (holy mackerel, that’s bad economics!):

    – More Guns, Less Crime by Dr. John R. Lott (University of Chicago Press, 3rd ed.)
    (shows that increased gun ownership reduced the overall violent crime rate, by deterring criminals)

    – Guns and Violence by Dr. Joyce Lee Malcolm (Harvard University Press)
    (shows that the violent crime rate DOUBLED in the UK after they banned guns)

    Reply
  12. Rick Stryker

    Whenever I check out econbrowser, I wonder what new fallacy Menzie or the other progressives who frequent this blog will foist upon us. Last time I visited, Jeff was busy claiming that people actually estimate volatility from data in order to price options. This time Menzie has got one for the record books.

    In his attempt to refute Dave’s correct point about Australian gun control, Menzie posts a chart that seems to suggest that the gun buyback program had some sort of effect. If you don’t think about the chart too hard, that is. If you bother to read what the author has done, he has apparently taken a series of either firearms-related homicide or firearms-related suicide ( or both, as he’s not clear) per 100K people, which have been declining consistently since the mid-1980s in Australia, and then attributed all of the decline in the one year after 1997 to the gun buyback. He then apparently multiplied that decline per 100K people by the population to come to his conclusion that the buyback program reduced the rate of firearm deaths by a permanent 100 people per year.

    This is statistical nonsense of course. If a series is trending downward in general, you can’t attribute all of the downward move after some policy change to the policy change, just because the policy change happened. A much more sound procedure is to fit a time series model to the Australian data and test whether there are any structural breaks around the time of the buyback. That’s just what Lee and Suardi did in The Australian Firearms Buyback
    and Its Effect on Gun Deaths
    . To quote from their paper:

    “The 1996-97 National Firearms Agreement (NFA) in Australia introduced strict gun
    laws, primarily as a reaction to the mass shooting in Port Arthur, Tasmania in 1996,
    where 35 people were killed. Despite the fact that several researchers using the same
    data have examined the impact of the NFA on firearm deaths, a consensus does not
    appear to have been reached. In this paper, we re-analyze the same data on firearm
    deaths used in previous research, using tests for unknown structural breaks as a means
    to identifying impacts of the NFA. The results of these tests suggest that the NFA did
    not have any large effects on reducing firearm homicide or suicide rates.

    Dave’s point is valid.

    Moreover, when discussing the Australian buyback program, gun control advocates never seem to mention all the relevant facts. The Australian program in 1996-97 was actually a large scale confiscation of semi-auto rifles and shotguns, as well as pump shotguns. Australia does not have a bill of rights or a second amendment and so they can outlaw those weapons. However, their constitution requires that they compensate the public. That’s why the buyback came about. They saddled the Australian taxpayer with an additional 0.5 billion AUD bill to pay for a buyback program that was ineffectual.

    Obviously, a large scale confiscation program cannot work in the US, even if it had worked in Australia, which it didn’t, but gun control advocates continue to point to the example of Australia, as if it’s somehow relevant to gun policy questions in the US.

    Reply
    1. Menzie Chinn Post author

      Rick Stryker: I think there is a reason why that paper was never published.

      If you plot the log level of the time series, you can see it doesn’t seem to make sense to try to analyze the entire 1915-2004 period, given obvious breaks with WWII and Korean War. I’m trying to use economically meaningful covariates (per capita income, urbanization) to explain the 1960-2004 time series; in that case, you can (1) find a statistically significant break at 3% msl using recursive 1-step ahead Chow test, and (2) a significant coefficient on a dummy that takes on a value for 1997 onward.

      Reply
      1. Rick Stryker

        Menzie,

        It was not unpublished. The paper was published in the January 2010 issue of Contemporary Economic Policy. I don’t think you can compare the quick analysis you did to the very careful and thorough analysis that Lee and Suardi did. As part of that analysis, they did look at subsets of the full data set using a number of different methods. They generally found structural breaks, if they existed, being in 1987 and the early 1950s. The 1987 break looks very plausible, as it was around that time that both homicides and suicides began to decline every year. Without even doing any statistical analysis and just looking at the graph of the log of the data series, there is nothing that jumps out as unusual around 1997.

        Moreover, we have non-statistical reasons to believe that the gun ban would likely have had no effect. The gun ban was on semi-automatic rifles and shotguns, which aren’t used very much anyway in homicides and suicides. Pistols are used in homicides mostly. You don’t need a self-loading rifle to commit suicide. It would be quite rare for someone to commit suicide by shooting himself more than once so the firearms that remained legal after the 1997 ban would have sufficed.

        Besides that, you haven’t addressed my point that the Australian gun ban can’t be implemented in the US anyway, even if it did work. But I think it’s fair to say that to the extent that there is any evidence it did work, it’s very weak evidence. The public doesn’t understand that though since they see bogus charts and statistical analysis, like you linked to above.

        Reply
        1. Menzie Chinn Post author

          Rick Stryker: I stand corrected. It was published! Wow. I’m working on my own formal analysis, and will post when I get a chance. Would like to update to 2010 before I do, but I can tell you that tests like Cusum indicate a break after 1997. Anyway, I think using covariates is better than assuming a stochastic trend given the seeming long swings in the data.

          Reply
  13. baffling

    folks like peak and rick have argued the freedom to carry weapons, especially concealed, is a deterrent to others who may commit gun violence. was this guy in vegas deterred by conceal carry permits?

    i think it is time for our congressmen to take up the issue of gun violence across the nation, rather than continue to avoid the issue. what are you so afraid of?

    Reply
    1. Rick Stryker

      Baffled,

      The psycho in Las Vegas took the high ground and became a sniper precisely I think because he didn’t want to get shot by people who were carrying concealed or by the police. Concealed carry can’t solve every problem. But there are cases in which people carrying concealed have stopped mass shootings. It would be nice if Mother Jones included that data in its database.

      Reply
      1. baffling

        Rick, nice try with the spin. But why would somebody interested in carrying out a mass shooting move from a protected location with ample storage for multiple automatic weapons and open field of fire, to a public forum where he could not store his weapons cache and a restricted field of fire? He would have done so if there were no conceal carry weapons? Your spin is wrong. In fact, if you want to say your argument is true, you advance the notion that conceal carry simply made the shooter more dangerous and protected, allowing for even more deaths and injuries. That would be an argument against conceal carry permits.

        Rick, this is an example where you intentionally try to distort and misdirect the discussion to further your agenda.

        Reply
        1. CoRev

          Baffled, that one of you most ignorant comments ever written. It may be even more ignorant than any other I have seen on this blog.

          Unless you are responding to the voice(s) in your head you had to be responding to this: “The psycho in Las Vegas took the high ground and became a sniper precisely I think because he didn’t want to get shot by people who were carrying concealed or by the police.” You obviously know nothing about shooting.

          Reply
          1. CoRev

            Baffled, you do know that he killed himself? Do you have any idea what his priority was? He was already prepared to die, so living was not #1.

          2. baffling

            corev, other than to rant incoherently, what exactly are you trying to say? or is this just another party of no response?
            “He was already prepared to die, so living was not #1.”
            so you agree, conceal carry is not what prompted him to take the position of high ground?

          3. CoRev

            Baffled, now claims: “so you agree, conceal carry is not what prompted him to take the position of high ground?” That’s exactly why he took the high ground several hundreds of yards form the target.

            You also made this earlier claim: “But why would somebody interested in carrying out a mass shooting move from a protected location with ample storage for multiple automatic weapons and open field of fire,” What do you think his hotel room was? Something other than “a protected location with ample storage for multiple automatic weapons and open field of fire,”

            Some how you think you know what was in the killer’s mind. I already pointed out his #1 priority was not to live, but we both probably agree it was to kill and injure as many as possible. Now you criticize Paddock’s success? You want us to believe you have a better approach and? could have killed even more? What’s wrong with you?

          4. baffling

            “That’s exactly why he took the high ground several hundreds of yards form the target.”

            so according to you and rick, conceal carry resulted in the accused being more deadly with his choice of position. not a very good outcome for conceal carry supporters.

            the rest of your incoherent rant does not make any sense. you are responding as the party of no, as usual, without comprehending the statements made.

        2. Rick Stryker

          Baffled,

          The reason is that if the psycho could be confident the crowd was unarmed, he could have killed many more people just by shooting into the crowd at close range on semi-auto. He would not have needed the bump fire stock and would probably have not used one, since a bump fire stock makes shooting very difficult and very innaccurate. However, the shooter was rational enough to realize that probably many people at a country music show were carrying concealed and he would have been stopped very quickly. In the hotel, he was shooting at about 400 yards. If you’ve ever done that, you’d realize that it is very difficult to be accurate at all. Hence, the bumpfire stock made sense, since the loss of accuracy did not matter. He just needed to shoot in the general vicinity of the crowd until it dispersed, which would not be long, and he needed to fire a lot of rounds, since he was just hitting people randomly anyway. He fired for about 10 minutes but it took the police 75 minutes to breach his room.

          The reason that he had many rifles is that a bump fire stock does not really convert a semi-auto into the equivalent of a full auto weapon. The parts of the rifle are not designed for rapid fire and can break easily as well as heat up too much with the bump fire system. So, you’d need redundancy.

          Most likely, the shooters correct assumption that many people below were armed saved lives that day.

          Reply
          1. baffling

            I must say rick, you really are digging deep to rationalize how conceal carry saved lives on that day. Let’s recap. If you are correct, conceal carry forced a psycho to change from a semi-auto weapon to an automatic weapon with extensive storage of ammunition. And he moved to higher ground, where the military experts have noted was the superior position for a stationary crowd target, due to the threat of conceal carry. But automatic weapons and superior position resulted in fewer deaths? Please stop this nonsense rick.

          2. CoRev

            Baffled, ignorance is bliss. Why do you persist with your nonsense? You clearly know nothing about the subject, and many others, and continue to try to dispute logic with you personal, ignorant explanations.

            Your ignorance evidenced:
            1) “conceal carry forced a psycho to change from a semi-auto weapon to an automatic weapon …” Conceal carry forced??? No his wish to kil and injure as many as possible influenced his decision of location.
            2) “And he moved to higher ground, where the military experts have noted was
            the superior position for a stationary crowd target, due to the threat of conceal carry. ” Wow! Let me commend your use of a capital. However his choice of the higher the superior position did several things. It gave him a wider field of fire than on the ground. Moved him out of the effective range of small arms which may be contained in the crowd. And allowed him to spray a larger portion of the targeted crowd. All appropriate decisions for someone who has chosen to ignore his own death over creating maximum death and destruction.

            But, baffled, due to his ignorance over guns wants us to believe what? How and where do you store your critical thinking? Without it logic is lost as you have amply demonstrated.

          3. Robert

            Excellent post, Rick, and you are spot on. The guy surely knew he likely would be killed very quickly if he attacked the crowd at ground level. The other issue/problem with bump stocks is the extra heat from the rapid fire greatly increases the chances of the rifle jamming…another reason to have multiple rifles given his sick objective. ‘Tis a shame too that the outrage (from the left) over this shooting never materializes when it comes to the slaughter of inner city minorities.

          4. baffling

            corev, in your knee-jerk reaction of “NO”, you are too willing to try and belittle me without understanding the discussion. rick stryker points out that conceal carry saved lives that day because it forced the shooter to move to the hotel and avoid resistance on the ground. your argument is with rick stryker, because you say he was more deadly in higher ground. i have simply pointed out the contradictions in these arguments. you simply responded with incoherent rants. both of you immediately tried to defend conceal carry, because of ideology, and contradicted each other. i simply pointed out your mistakes.

            as for the name calling, corev
            “When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser.” Socrates

          5. CoRev

            Baffled, and there you go again responding to the voices in your head: “… belittle me without understanding the discussion. rick stryker points out that conceal carry saved lives that day because it forced the shooter to move to the hotel and avoid resistance on the ground.”
            His reasoning was: “The reason is that if the psycho could be confident the crowd was unarmed, he could have killed many more people just by shooting into the crowd at close range on semi-auto.” Yes, I do agree with this reasoning.

            You have used all sorts of illogical arguments due to your own gun ignorance and unsubstantiated opinions. And that’s been my argument against your BS.

            The fact you are so righteous in your beliefs without any consideration of others opinions and experiences. Only yours matter, but you have been wrong too many times on so many subjects, it just shows your ignorance and arrogance. Your arrogance typically generates a series of angry belittling attacks to others disagreeing with you.

            On this subject concerning RS’s opinion you are in the extreme minority.

  14. joseph

    It’s funny (and I don’t mean funny, ha ha) how Republicans always say that it’s impossible to do anything substantial about gun culture in American. Ooh, it’s so complicated. Nobody knew!

    The gun issue is just like the healthcare issue. We know that it isn’t that difficult because every other civilized country in the world has solved it. But Republicans insist on some perverted sort of “American Exceptionalism” that prevents the country from accomplishing what every other country has accomplished — gun control, universal healthcare.

    Reply
    1. baffling

      look at the logic. now they will consider regulation of bump stock-which is an automatic weapon. but they do not want to regulate automatic weapons. what is the difference? nothing but an ideology. there is no logic to these positions.

      Reply
      1. CoRev

        Baffled, ignorant, ignorant, and all false emotion: “now they will consider regulation of bump stock-which is an automatic weapon. but they do not want toregulate automatic weapons.” Automatic weapons are already outlawed.

        Reply
          1. CoRev

            More ignorance! A bump stock is NOT a weapon. And that’s what it appears Congress is aiming to outlaw. Why do you think the previous administration approved it? What were those Democrats thinking?

          2. Rick Stryker

            Baffled,

            A bump fire stock weapon is not full auto. It uses the recoil to enable the the shooter to pull the semi-auto trigger faster than he could by himself, but with significant downsides relative to a true full auto: it’s very difficult to shoot, very inaccurate, and will beat up and can break the gun.

            Obama’s ATF ruled it was not full auto.

          3. baffling

            Both corev and rick stryker try to embrace a technicality-they must be vulcan. So because the ATF ruled something was not an automatic weapon, it must not be an automatic. If you watch the video, and listen to the automatic gunfire coming from the hotel, and still want to argue the weapons used were not automatic weapons then i am truly baffled. Please tell those killed and injured this was not an automatic weapon. And yet now congress is willing to ban the bump fire stock. Why? Because it is an automatic weapon!

          4. CoRev

            Baffled, “Both corev and rick stryker try to embrace a technicality”, and that’s probably why that past democratic administration approved its use. Just a technicality.

            Here’s another technicality. As we have seen motor vehicles have been used as weapons. They also come with automatic transmissions. That means motor vehicles are also automatic weapons. They too need to be banned in bizarro Baffled world.

          5. baffling

            if bump stock is not an automatic weapon, then why make it illegal? again, you are trying to dance around with technicalities. just because rick stryker or corev do not want to call something an automatic weapon, does not mean it is not an automatic weapon. as i said, listen to the burst of gunfire during the assault. that is an automatic weapon. period.

    2. Rick Stryker

      Isn’t a much easier solution for progressives to move to Europe so that they can get the universal health care and gun control they crave? Why don’t you move Joseph? You and other progressives want America to be a European social welfare state. Why wait for action? Move there.

      Reply
      1. Menzie Chinn Post author

        Rick Stryker: You’re always arguing for extreme deregulation; wouldn’t it be easier for you to move to some Brazilian jungle like some Germans did post-WWII and set up your own little enclave?

        Reply
        1. Rick Stryker

          Menzie,

          No, it wouldn’t be easier. The US is already the most prosperous, most free, and greatest nation in the history of the world. If there were something better, I’d be on the next plane. But meanwhile, the best strategy of people like me is to resist those who want to impede our freedom and prosperity.

          But for you guys it’s different. There are many advanced European welfare states that you could choose to move to. Why don’t you do it?

          Reply
          1. Menzie Chinn Post author

            Rick Stryker: Freer for some; I’m sure you’ll be tickled white when torchlight parades are an everyday event.

            I think America is the greatest country in the world, or certainly was when it was more the case that all Americans were viewed as equal, immigrants were viewed as above subhuman, expertise was viewed as a good thing, and facts were valued.

          2. baffling

            Rick, please joint your comrades in the kremlin. If you don’t like my country, you are welcome to leave.

  15. John

    My condolences to all the peoples in Las Vegas.

    It is not about guns or weapons, it is all about the mindset.
    If somebodies intention is to do harm, he will find a way- renting a truck ?
    But the motive for the left-wingers against the 2nd amendment is clear.
    Watch out !
    Long live the NRA!

    And : Rest in peace, Tom Petty.

    Reply
    1. baffling

      i don’t think you even understand what the 2nd amendment is trying to protect. it is not an unlimited protection. we already have limits on certain “arms” which we allow people to have. no bazookas. no tactical nukes. there are limits, defined by the people. why should there not be a limit on automatic weapons? when the constitution was written, automatic weapons did not exist.

      Reply
    1. PeakTrader

      “Suburban households are 28.6% more likely to own guns than urban households. Despite lower gun ownership, urban areas experience much higher murder rates.”

      Reply
        1. PeakTrader

          Is that what the statistics tell you – people from suburban areas, particularly white males, go into urban areas to murder people?!

          Reply
  16. Rick Stryker

    Baffled,

    I don’t know why you continue to argue with me and Corev about subjects you know nothing about. An AR-15 outfitted with a bump stock is not a fully automatic weapon. This video report explains the differences if you care to understand them. As you can see from the demonstration, a shooter on semi-auto can fire about 5 rounds per second. The bump stock uses the semi-auto recoil to essentially allow the shooter to pull the trigger a little faster, so that you can get about 7.5 rounds per second. But a true full auto will achieve over 15 rounds per second. The bump stock increases the rate of fire over pulling the trigger fully manually, but there is a cost: the weapon can jam more easily, you lose accuracy and controllability, and as Robert points out, the barrel heats up. That’s why the shooter had multiple weapons–for necessary redundancy.

    You also seem to think that getting the high ground was some kind of inherent advantage. My point, however, is that given his objective, which was to kill as many people as possible, the high ground is not the best option. On iron sights, the shooter can’t shoot an AR-15 accurately at 400-500 yards. He would need a scope and a tripod and he couldn’t have used a bump fire stock. Most likely because he wasn’t a proficient marksman, he decided to forget about accuracy and just shoot in the direction of the crowd, with his rate of fire increased by the bump fire stock. According to reports, the shooter also had some weapons outfitted with scopes and tripods on semi-auto, so he was prepared to go in that direction also.

    If the shooter were on the ground, close to the crowd, and had a shorter barrel AR-15, he could have killed far more people on semi-auto if he could have fired uninterrupted for 10 minutes, as he did from his hotel room. The florida gunman killed almost as many people in his bar attack on the unarmed patrons as did the Las Vegas psycho. But the Las Vegas gunman would never have been able to fire for 10 minutes into a crowd in which probably a lot of people were armed. Taking the high ground was his next best option.

    Reply
  17. baffling

    rick stryker, you have a lot of hypotheticals and ifs required to back up your arguments. It takes an enormous amount of mental gymnastics to support your statement that lives were saved in las vegas because of conceal carry. i find it telling that both you and corev jumped on this angle of the argument so quickly with opposite arguments, and have pushed this position so vehemently. in particular, neither of you have ANY idea what thoughts crossed the psychos mind in his decision making process. So to endorse conceal carry as a savor of lives in the las vegas shootings is simply absurd. Unless you are an ideological hack. neither of you could resist politicizing those shootings.

    Reply
    1. baffling

      no rick stryker, the problem is you used the las vegas shooting to promote your agenda of conceal carry, when you knew absolutely nothing about whether conceal carry had any impact on the shooter whatsoever. but you want to promote your agenda as fact. rubbish. you should have simply stayed silent on the issue, rather than author a false narrative.

      Reply
      1. Rick Stryker

        I get if baffled. It doesn’t matter what arguments or facts I offer. You don’t need to counter those arguments. Unless the shooter signed a manifesto saying that he went to the hotel because of fear of being stopped by someone in the crowd, you won’t believe it. I bet even in that case you wouldn’t believe it–you’d probably say he wasn’t in his right mind and so can’t be credited.

        Your mind is closed to argument and evidence.

        Reply
        1. baffling

          “Unless the shooter signed a manifesto saying that he went to the hotel because of fear of being stopped by someone in the crowd, you won’t believe it.”
          you have no evidence this is the case, especially with respect to conceal carry. those events have armed police in force as well. probably a much greater threat to his efforts than conceal carry. but you want to promote the conceal carry angle, because you have an agenda to push. so i call bs. deal with it.

          Reply
    2. Anonymous

      Rick, yup! And he claims: ” the problem is you used the las vegas shooting to promote your agenda of conceal carry….you want to promote your agenda as fact. ” But the only agenda being promoted is his gun control, what ever that is.

      I doubt if he has ever shot a gun, probably doesn’t/wouldn’t own one, and would be frightened of it if handed to him.

      Like most anti-gun proponents , they know nothing about the subject. In his case and on many different subjects that has been obvious to me for years

      Reply
      1. baffling

        I have not really promoted any gun control agenda in this thread, other than automatic weapons. I have only pointed out the fallacy of your arguments that conceal carry saved lives in Las Vegas. The two of you are the ones that actively promoted propaganda in your responses.

        I have actually owned guns in the past, even hunted, but my preference is fishing in the outdoors. And if you want to use guns to enhance your outdoor activities, such as hunting, i have no problem. But i have never encountered the experience where i needed a silencer and assault style weapons to bring home a trophy. So corev, you are wrong once again on my understanding of guns. Idiot.

        Reply
        1. CoRev

          Baffled and there you go lying again: “I have not really promoted any gun control agenda in this thread, other than automatic weapons. ” Your exception, automatic weapons, is already controlled, and you have espoused there is no need for concealed carry because you personally disbelieve Rick’s hypothesis.

          Again you let your emotions take control of any potential logic if you are even capable of any. You know what calling me and others idiots means:
          “When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser.”

          Reply
          1. baffling

            Corev, I know exactly what calling you an idiot means. It means you were completely incorrect about my history with guns. Stupid would be another word to describe your statements as well. Factually, you got nothing correct in that comment. Hence the description, idiot. You have a better description?

            And your comment on conceal carry is also incorrect. You have gotten hysterical in your responses, and attributed arguments that I have never made. I have simply pointed out the flaws in your arguments that conceal carry saved lives in Las Vegas. You have simply flipped out over this. Unstable.

      2. Rick Stryker

        Corev,

        Indeed. It’s almost always true that gun control advocates know next to nothing about firearms. The more you learn about firearms, how they work and how they are used, how they are misused, etc., the less you believe in the progressive gun control policies. A good case in point is Leah Libresco, the former statistician and writer for 538.com. Once she really got into the subject, she realized how wrong-headed gun control really is.

        Reply
  18. Rick Stryker

    Menzie,

    Well , you insinuated I am a Nazi and implied I am a white supremacist. I guess, in your own small way, you are trying to bring back that Golden Age in American History, in which, in your words

    “….it was more the case that all Americans were viewed as equal, immigrants were viewed as above subhuman, expertise was viewed as a good thing, and facts were valued.”

    I think I see. We need to get back to that Golden Age when America could be called the greatest country in the world, a time when all Americans were viewed as equal, unless they express conservative opinions, in which case it’s OK to brand them as Nazis and white supremacists. Expertise is good and facts are valued in that brilliant age of yore, unless that expertise and those facts are used to defend conservative opinions, in which case the expertise and facts can be dismissed as evidence of Nazism and white supremacy.

    It should be obvious to objective observers that you wouldn’t be resorting to these tactics if you could defend your positions.

    Reply
    1. Menzie Chinn Post author

      Rick Stryker: You suggested I move to Western Europe because I’d be more comfortable there; that sounds a lot like “Amerika, love it or leave it”. Entschuldigung, ich denke, Sie wissen genau, was Sie sagen.

      Reply
      1. Rick Stryker

        No, I was replying to Joseph, who was claiming that it’s so easy to solve the gun control or health care debate. If it is so easy and there are actually no costs or tradeoffs, why aren’t people flocking from the US to those countries? Yes, it is easier to deal with those issues from a progressive viewpoint in countries that don’t have a bill of rights (e.g., Australia), don’t have a second amendment (e.g., everywhere), don’t have the same protections for freedom of speech as in the U.S., (e.g., Germany), and have a high amount of government control (e.g., almost everywhere). But there are very obvious costs and tradeoffs in those countries.

        I wasn’t making the silly argument, “America, love it or leave it.” Of course, you want to attribute a silly argument to me, one that’s easier for you to refute rather than to deal with my real point. And you want to divert attention from how you and other progressives engage in the despicable practice of labeling people with conservative views Nazis and white supremacists.

        Reply
        1. Menzie Chinn Post author

          Rick Stryker: As you try to squirm out of your statement, let me quote you explicitly; you wrote:

          Isn’t a much easier solution for progressives to move to Europe so that they can get the universal health care and gun control they crave? Why don’t you move Joseph? You and other progressives want America to be a European social welfare state. Why wait for action? Move there.

          That seems to be a statement that if one doesn’t agree with your prescription for America, then leave. I don’t know how anybody who speaks English as a first language would otherwise interpret the comment.

          Reply
          1. Rick Stryker

            I explained what I meant–and it was not “America, love it or leave it.” I think it’s you who have trouble with English. If you want to see a real life example of that statement, you only have to look in the comments to find Baffled saying to me:

            “Rick, please joint your comrades in the kremlin. If you don’t like my country, you are welcome to leave.”

            See the difference Menzie? Notice the reference to “my country.” Yet, you passed over that comment in silence.

          2. Menzie Chinn Post author

            Rick Stryker: Well, that wasn’t addressed to me, so I didn’t respond to it; I was responding to you. You were responding to Joseph and “other progressives”, so I am responding to the command you have made to “Move there” i.e., to Europe. “Move there” seems to me as a native English speaker to be an imperative. But that’s just my poor understanding of English, you know…

          3. baffling

            rick, that statement was intentionally meant for you. you do not believe this is “my country”. you believe it is “your country”. that has been your rhetoric on this blog for years. you want those who do not believe in your worldview to go someplace else, so that you can build your vision of utopia here, in your country. but this most definitely is my country. don’t ask me to leave my country because i make you uncomfortable.

  19. Steven Kopits

    What is that 9 pm update? A log scale? Why? No years on the x-axis. Why?

    In this report by the Australian government, there is no visible break point around 1997. Indeed, the homicide rate rose for the next several years. (See fig. 1, p5)

    Rather, the connection between alcohol and homicide is very strong. There is a much better case, in terms of reducing the murder rate, for prohibiting alcohol than guns. On the other hand, Prohibition didn’t work out that well in the US, did it.

    http://aic.gov.au/media_library/publications/tandi_pdf/tandi521.pdf

    Reply
    1. PeakTrader

      Prohibition was a success that reduced alcohol consumption dramatically:

      Actually, Prohibition Was a Success
      New York Times
      October 16, 1989

      “What everyone ”knows” about Prohibition is that it was a failure. But the conventional view of Prohibition is not supported by the facts.

      First, the regime created in 1919 by the 18th Amendment and the Volstead Act, which charged the Treasury Department with enforcement of the new restrictions, was far from all-embracing. The amendment prohibited the commercial manufacture and distribution of alcoholic beverages; it did not prohibit use, nor production for one’s own consumption. Moreover, the provisions did not take effect until a year after passage -plenty of time for people to stockpile supplies.

      Second, alcohol consumption declined dramatically during Prohibition. Cirrhosis death rates for men were 29.5 per 100,000 in 1911 and 10.7 in 1929. Admissions to state mental hospitals for alcoholic psychosis declined from 10.1 per 100,000 in 1919 to 4.7 in 1928.

      Arrests for public drunkenness and disorderly conduct declined 50 percent between 1916 and 1922. For the population as a whole, the best estimates are that consumption of alcohol declined by 30 percent to 50 percent.

      Third, violent crime did not increase dramatically during Prohibition. Homicide rates rose dramatically from 1900 to 1910 but remained roughly constant during Prohibition’s 14 year rule. Organized crime may have become more visible and lurid during Prohibition, but it existed before and after.

      Fourth, following the repeal of Prohibition, alcohol consumption increased. Today, alcohol is estimated to be the cause of more than 23,000 motor vehicle deaths and is implicated in more than half of the nation’s 20,000 homicides.”

      My note: Alcohol and drug use is an explosive combination.

      Reply
      1. PeakTrader

        “According to a study conducted by M.I.T. and Boston University economists in the early 1990s, alcohol consumption actually fell by as much as 70 percent during the early years of the “noble experiment.” The levels jumped significantly in the late-1920s as support for the law waned, but they remained 30 percent lower than their pre-Prohibition levels for several years after the passage of the 21st Amendment.”

        Reply
    2. Rick Stryker

      Steven,

      See my comment on the posted chart. What the author of that chart did does not make any sense. I also linked to a paper that finds statistically what is obvious to the naked eye when you look at the data. There was no significant effect on homicide or suicide by firearm per 100K population after the gun ban.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.