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What’s on Your ‘What-If’ Gun Shopping List?

by James Tarr   |  October 15th, 2012 29

45-AmmoIf there has been one bright spot in the economy of the last several years, it has been in the firearms sector. Ruger, Smith & Wesson, just about any gun company you can name has been doing darn well, if not seeing record sales numbers.

The why of these increased sales is a matter of some debate, but whether it is solely or partially due to fears of anti-gun laws, politics is a huge factor. It’s been said that President Barack Obama has been the greatest gun salesman ever, because fears of what he might do based upon comments he has made have driven people to get while the getting is good.

While anti-gun legislation is a non-starter in the current political climate, there are a lot of worries that Obama, if he stays in office, will proceed with anti-gun efforts. Lame duck presidents who don’t have to worry about re-election have always been less constrained to court popular opinion.

Fellow gun writer and SWAT cop Jason Teague recently sent out an email to a group of us like-minded folk wondering what might be on our shopping lists if Obama is re-elected. I found the responses interesting, as they fell into several categories.

A number of people thought of it as an opportunity to make a lot of money, remembering how the prices of just about everything spiked after Clinton’s so-called Assault Weapons Ban in 1994. Full-capacity magazine prices skyrocketed, and several in the email exchange pointed out how they had been buying a lot of magazines, not just for personal use, but as an investment. Think about it: Do you remember how much Glock, AK and AR-15 magazines were going for a few years into the ban? AK magazine prices still haven’t normalized.

I had a good friend who was in the DEA, and in the late ’90s he sold all of his commercial Glock magazines for double to triple what he paid for them, then bought all new magazines through his agency for about $10 apiece. His new mags were marked “For Law Enforcement/Military Use Only,” but he didn’t care; he made several hundred dollars.

These same capitalist opportunists friends of mine–and that is not a negative term with me, only a statement of fact–have also been buying a lot of stripped AR-15 lower receivers. If you pay attention, you can find lowers for as low as $59.

The second group of respondents had stockpiling on their minds. They remembered not just how prices skyrocketed, but how both ammunition and reloading components were nowhere to be found. This was due to panic and hoarding as much as anything, but the time to be buying ammunition is not after the EPA has deemed it a dangerous environmental toxin and slapped a 500-percent tax on it. Gun control takes many forms, and backdoor attempts to gut the Second Amendment are nothing new. Even if there isn’t something political that drives up the cost of ammunition, it is not likely to decrease in cost anytime soon, if ever. Why not buy now?

The third group was the most practical: Buy what you’re going to need, just in case it’s not available. Beyond the expected ammunition and magazine buying, they recommended spare parts. Shotgun News’ Dave Fortier replied, “Spare parts for your go-to guns should be considered. Spare firing pins, extractor, ejectors, springs, bolts, gas rings for ARs. Recoil springs for pistols.”

My response to the email? “I have all the ammo (and then some) and guns (and then some) I would ever need. Not to say I don’t want more. Food and water and other consumables are higher on the must-have list, especially since I have kids to feed. If I had the money, what I’d really like is to get a couple of suppressors, now that they’re legal in Michigan. I think having a suppressed gun–or enough to outfit all the males in the family–might be very valuable.”

There is a very good chance that if the president is reelected, he will have a Republican-dominated House and Senate to put the kibosh on any anti-gun legislation he’s in favor of, but that doesn’t mean nothing can happen. Presidents have used Executive Orders to do all sorts of things, both good and (mostly) bad, and our current one is no different. Most people in power do what they can, not what they should; that’s why our Founding Fathers wrote the Second Amendment.

  • ldgrey1963

    I, for one, believe the 'Obama card ' will be played out this November. I also believe that I should have the items I will need (in the way of firearms, ammo,mags, etc…) in case Mr. Obama gets to stay on the oval office for four more years. This kinda reminds me of the Y2K scare, except our 2nd Ammendment rights are the subject now. If Obama is re-elected, and the Republicans control or dominate the House or Senate, chances are he will not get any 'bad gun' laws passed. We all shall see if the GUN SCARE was just another Y2K type HOAX.

    • Comus57

      One problem with your theory. Obama said he was going to get gun control done "Under The Radar". Going through Congress with legislation is NOT "Under The Radar". If he is re-elected, he will get this done "Under The Radar" by Supreme Court Appointments to establish a Highly Liberal sided Supreme Court to make the decisions Obama "Tells" them to make. He's already appointed two that could "Lean" his way. With more liberal judges, he has a better opportunity to screw us all than trying to get it done through Congress and the Senate.

      • ron

        yes, he will use the supreme court among other ways to ban arms and ammo. plus the UN that he
        is intent to favor also wants guns, ammo banned throught the world, it's also part of agenda 21.
        easier to control people if they cannot fight back.

    • gaillard1217

      I agree, and if he loses in November it could be worse, at least temporarily. He'll have nothing to lose and will use every dirty trck he can, not only against guns, but there's no limit. Gay marriage, abortion, signing treaties (like gun control at the UN),, there's just no limit.

    • tmitchellw

      I fully expect that it is a Hoax that keeps us from paying attention to what's really going on.

      We are rapidly migrated away from Constitutional Law. All of our Presidents(Democrat and Republican) that I can remember have called our government a Democracy. As you, and I know, our founding fathers did everything in their power to try to prevent a Democracy. They gave us a Republic with Democratically elected Representatives. That is a far cry from a Democracy.

      This is exactly what happened in Germany during the 30's that paved the way for Hitler. Their economy got so bad through hyper-inflation that citizens had to have a wheel barrow full of cash to buy a loaf of bread. People had to get paid at lunch time to eat because if they waited until after work their money was worthless. Are we heading towards hyper-inflation? I don't know, but I do know that inflation is the highest I've ever heard of it being today. That can be seen in the rise in price of our necessities in life.

      Who's to blame? I'm beginning to believe that it might just all be a part of some nefarious plan that none of us knows the details about. Our last few Presidents where either Lawyers or had studied Law at some point. That means that they know the truth. That also means that they are all intelligent men. I have a hard time believing that they are not operating by some plan. It just may not be the plan the we think they should be operating under.

      • scooter

        Your "Constitutional Law/Republic" comments are right on the mark! I'm not sure I buy the remarks you made in your final 'graph but keep your logical comments flowing, as I think you're on to something a lot of this crowd haven't considered yet.

  • skip

    if i can manage to put enough money aside that i can afford to part with i will buy at least a case each for all of my firearms and several back packs such as alice packs and the such. i have enough firearms also a few more mags for rifles.

  • skip

    i just made a comment and i meant to say a 'case each of'ammo' for all my firearms.

  • badpe48

    It's not the steps Obama will take to restrict the second amendment that worries me. What has me worried is that Obama will have the opportunity to nominate two or three Supreme Court Judges. This would have a much more important effect on all of our individual rights for many years.

    • gaillard

      so true- long-lasting, terrible damage he could do there. And the way some republicans have acted in the past, he may actually get them approved.

  • Ross Walters

    Oh no! That bad old Obama's gonna take our guns away via Executive Order. (That IS funny)
    You people stay up nights dreaming up stuff like this? Geezus don't you have something constructive to do?

    • gaillard

      He's made his feelings about guns well known thru the years. He's also violated the Cost. while needing to be re-elected. If you don't think he'll do it after November you either are poorly informed or a socialist, just like obama.

  • GThomas

    Ross, I'm not half as worried about I'llblameya as I am about people like you who know nothing about anything and are still allowed to vote. It says right in the DNC party platform about gun bans and magazine bans. But you'll vote for him just so you and your boyfriend can get married and the heck with the rest of our civil rights.

    • Ross Walters

      Ha ha ha…but get a few facts straight.

      We all worry about how other 'less intelligent' voters will cast their ballots.
      The most recent government gun ban was signed by Mitt as Governor of Massachussetts.
      My wife doesn't condone cheating and polygamy is illegal but then if Romney is elected…who knows?

      • GThomas

        Couldn't resist the cheap shot, sorry about that. ;-)

        But seriously read the Republican platform from their convention too, then compare it to the Democrats. BIG DIFFERENCE…

        Not a BIG Romney fan, but we gun owners CAN'T have 4 more years of the other guy….

        • AJB

          Also both Rommney and Ryan are NRA members and supports of the 2nd ammendment!

          Obama won't evven put his hand over his chest for the pledge of allegance…

          • MFF

            How a Governor that signed a weapons ban in MA is a member of NRA ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

      • chuck

        As you probably know being governor of a blue state witha heavily socialist legislature, what he did there is not the same as what he believes is good for the country. Romney has made his position very clear, he supports the 2nd. obama has made his clear as well, and he does not- along with much of the Constitution.

  • PeanutButter

    I beseech you, stop being paranoid and take a basic political science class. History is replete with Justices making decisions that went against the grain of the presidents who appointed them.

    • scooter

      PB is right. Don't any of you remember Chief Justice Roberts voting with the other four more liberal justices on the Affordable Health Care case just a couple of weeks ago?

  • Gary1836

    Obama just said in the debate he wants to re introduce a assault gun ban. Bad timing Ross, go scurry off to your troll hole.

    • Ross Walters

      Bad form and bad grammar Gary.
      Glad you don't live next door but then we don't have any mobile homes in our neighborhood.

  • Starky

    I am not as worried about a straight out ban or heavy legislation related to gun control. I am far more concerned they will pass extremely high taxes on everything related to firearms. Especially now that the US Supreme Court ruled on Obama care. That it is ok because the government has the right to pass taxes. That ruling may have opened a big door that might be damn hard to close.

  • Gary1836

    Ross did the dear leaders people send you here because you know all about guns because you played Call of Duty once? Now do you have to leave your mom's basement to troll or do you have to go to a center with the other Obamatards?

    Remember, vote for the Mormon not the moron!

    • Ross Walters

      I came from the planet Kolob.
      I've gotta go because mom is wearing something sexy and lunch is ready…TACO'S!!!

      Honestly. You never outgrew name-calling after grade school? That's sad. Bet you are a picnic to live with and have no friends.

      • James Tarr

        Obvious Troll is obvious…………Ross, how about instead of insulting people who disagree with you, you tell us how Obama is right to want to reinstate the AWB, or outlaw "cheap handguns" in Chicago….

  • Ross Walters

    You call somebody a Troll then in the same breath attack THEM for being insulting? Geez Louise.
    Look at that dufus you see in your mirror. Take a good look. He should be Tarr-ed and feathered.

    Funny how Romney says he is in favor of reinstating the AWB…or did you forget that fact?
    Neither candidate is firearm friendly. Get that through your thick skull.

    • scooter

      Time out! Both of you to your rooms without lunch!

      The issues being discussed here are extremely important and aren't helped at all with cheap-shot insults thrown at each other. Debates are won with well reasoned, well thought out comments, not with the basest or cheapest insults.

  • Ronny Jo

    If you have a certain gun on your "what if" list you should check out This is a great website where you can bid on things one penny at a time. Currently, the Taurus Judge is up for auction as well as many others!

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