We’re watching a once-in-a-generation event, a national move across Australia to snuff out the Firearms Industry. Fortunately, there are more than seven bureaucracies and a dozen government agencies involved, so someone is accidentally going to let the truth out. If we put the public statements and actions of the agencies together, you get the full picture.
Step 1. Queensland Shuts Dealers to limit domestic violence
Last week we received documents from senior members of a Queensland Department revealing Queensland Health closed all firearms dealers to limit domestic violence (click here).
Our release was disparaged by a leader of at least one shooting organisation, who said it was ‘BS until proven’. That organisation quickly changed it’s tune when Lisa Neville, Police Minister of Victoria, came out on 31 March and cited ‘family violence’ as a factor in closing firearms dealerships to recreational shooters (click here).
As we reported last week, family violence from heavily-vetted licensed shooters is a nonsense fear. A bit like worrying that lawyers will turn into drug-dealers. It happens, but its rarer than ordinary people taking that on.
Crime statistics from Victoria undermine Lisa Neville’s position. Indeed, in one study, just 166 out of more than 15,000 domestic violence perpetrators held a firearms license (click here). This statistic lays waste to Neville’s insinuation that firearms license owners are going to cause domestic violence merely because they can go to a dealer and buy ammo.
Step 2. Victoria’s Dealer Closures
In Victoria’s statutory instrument closing all dealerships, the Commissioner of Police wrote:
“As a result of observed increased in Firearms Permit to Acquire applications… [we are closing dealers]”
This gave voice to the great fear of the Victorian government jellyfish that somehow their authority was being undermined because people who hunt deer could buy rifles.
Step 3. Western Australia starts denying all license applications
At this point, we should all be waking up. And unsurprised when Western Australia starts refusing normal sporting shooter license applications because of scary virus. No sensible explanation. Just ectoplasm.
Step 4. Qld Health allows occupational use! No, that’s fake.
Queensland Health circles back. Under immense pressure over their first decision to close all dealers full stop (click here), they pretend to help rural Queensland. They pretend to allow primary producers to buy ammo in direction number 4 (click here). However, it’s worded so that thousands of primary producers who have had their license conditions amended by Qld Weapons Licensing (yes, these WLB folks click here) over the years to be rural occupational or recreational (RE1), cannot buy ammo. Unless you have PP or FC conditions you cannot transact with a dealer.
Weapons Licensing put years of effort into migrating users from primary production conditions into occupational and recreational conditions.
Now Queensland Health can use arbitrary criteria to comprehensively disable pest management in rural Queensland during a crisis.
Why would Qld Health do this?
Get ready, because you’ll hate the answer. Section 23 of Queensland’s Biosecurity Act 2004 places an obligation on landholders to contain or minimise the impact of plant and animal pests. Penalties max out at over $3 million per offence.
Penalties imposed by a court under this provision survive bankruptcy. The whole object is to take a farmer’s land.
If you can’t buy ammo and you can’t control pests, you’re a dirty disorganised farmer – who probably didn’t vote Labor – and you’re committing an offence that should see you turfed off your land and bankrupted.
This maybe why Qld Health is sticking so close to super narrow license condition requirements for who dealers can sell to. They’ve said these restrictions will be in for more than six months. Maybe they don’t want you to control pests. Maybe they want the Biosecurity goons to find you aren’t controlling pests.
Maybe it would be nice to fine farmers into oblivion and confiscate some land. Don’t forget fines in the new reality are now commonplace. You can fight them in court, at your own expense, if you don’t like them.
At the bottom of this is the idea that if dealers can’t sell to many, they’ll go bust. Queensland Health would be thrilled if dealers go bust (“thereby stopping domestic violence, let’s have a morning tea”).