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Arlington cops seize guns, ammo from guy who made online crack about congresswoman's shooting

Wicked Local Arlington reports on the aftermath of Travis Corcoran's "1 down, 534 to go" blog post:

APD Capt. Robert Bongiorno said the department took his statements made in the blog as a credible threat and took precautionary measures. The weapons were seized Jan. 13.

Corcoran's blog is offline now.

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"In his interview last week, Corcoran said while he did not regret the blog post, he does not actually believe violence against politicians is an effective method of reforming government."

In other words,even though my world is crumbling around me, I'm still a scumbag.Good thing he has "many income streams".

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So why is this guy still on the air?

They believe in communism. They believe and have called for a revolution. You're going to have to shoot them in the head.

for more: http://bit.ly/hVjrEw

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One down, thousands more to go!

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Hey, we can stipulate this guy is an unreconstructed knucklehead. People crack dumb jokes all the time sitting at a bar or driving to the Taco Bell with their meathead friends, and it doesn't make them "credible threats," but they don't commit the Major Stupid of putting them on the internets. Kick his butt, if you know him or share a tainted gene pool with him.

Even - plausibly - take away his firearms ID or license to carry, whichever he holds; the law as written, rightly or wrongly, allows police chiefs to issue these to persons they deem "suitable," criteria vague. To some chiefs that means "clean criminal record," but to others - including the chief in Arlington, clearly - it means "no stupids."

But seize the guy's guns, joke or not, without any criminal charge or even a restraining order? Yep, I'm a firearms owner and carrier, at one point under legal chain of command in a far country. I'm also a loyal Democrat and a loyal democrat, and I don't take or make lightly jokes about the deaths of public officials.

But police seized his property with no criminal charge, no restraining order - or, in a less threatening phrase, requested he surrender his property to officers. (Yes, you can possess firearms in your home without being licensed or permitted. Better never try to take them outside or buy ammunition for them around here, though.)

Maybe what he did is criminal under the federal code; I'm not sure, because it's one thing to say "I'm going to kill President William McKinley" and another to say, "McKinley today, Roosevelt tomorrow." So maybe, eventually, the knucklehead gets charged with something. Still, based on a charge (with what's left of presumption of innocence), we can seize someone's stuff?

Can we, then, seize Sarah Palin's moose rifle because of the crosshairs she drew over Rep. Giffords' district?

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They take away his guns because there's something fundamentally different about guns - they're meant to kill.

If a guy says to you "I'm going to get my gun now and kill you," are you going to wait until he actually shows up with the gun before you do something - like beat the crap out of him? If someone threatens you, you have a right to defend yourself. That's what the police have done. Someone made a threat, and they acted before he could carry it out. If this moron didn't want his guns taken away, he shouldn't have been such a smart-ass. As it is, I have serious doubts about the wisdom of allowing mentally deficients like this guy own guns in the first place.

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You are allowed to say "good idea - here's some pointers" when a federal judge and a US Rep are shot.

You are not necessarily allowed to do so AND declare your property a sovereign nation AND keep a large cache of automatic weaponry and ammo.

In any case, he was no longer in legal possession of the firearms once his permit was revoked.

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You're right, I'm wrong. I was operating under an old belief, maybe practical-morphed-into-legal argument that one could own firearms in the home without a license.

As a practical matter you can, of course, do what you can get away with until you're caught; but having checked the law, it appears, Massachusetts does require a license for mere ownership. Apologies all around. Should've checked before typing.

I'm still unconvinced that what he said rises to any legal standard of credible threat, whether he owns weapons or not; nor does declaring oneself a "sovereign nation" constitute a crime. (And I never read about "a large cache of automatic weaponry" - "automatic" would mean he had a federal license, not one issued by the local chief - nor do we necessarily agree on "large." The knucklehead, by the local weekly's account, owned 11 firearms. That's five more than I own, mostly because I'm cheap.)

If applause for a crime and possession of the means to commit similar crimes taken together constitute a new crime, though, I'm a cantaloupe, and I'm not, at least in the sovereign nation of my own brain. I generally applaud Wikileaks, and I own several computers; can the fibbies lock me up next to Bradley Manning?

I hate, hate, hate sounding like a Tea Partier, but this smells. I wish the guy at the center of it weren't a knucklehead.

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If this were in isolation, I'd probably agree more with the ickiness of their acting on ONE dumb statement or something.

However, the guy's blog was basically a running diatribe against government, officials, police, etc. And on top of it all, he intentionally trolled them (presuming they'd never read it?) with comments about how they had no authority over him whatsoever.

If we can't necessarily discover the ones who hide their ill intentions from view, then the least we can do is investigate the ones who publish their stupidity online and claim that "there's definitely a time for armed overthrow of a government" even if they later say "well, not this time...but maybe soon...". I think a few days pause without his guns while they look into the matter isn't going to hurt anyone...and that's the point. It's a fine line we have to walk when dealing with these issues between reactive and proactive...but when it comes to guns and public safety, being reactive is just flat out too late.

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Here's my worry: What drew LE's attention was his knuckleheaded rants tastelessly wishing for the deaths of elected officials (not explicitly or even implicitly threatening to harm them himself, in anything I've seen in the public media) and generally expressing his contempt for the government - then they jumped at the fact that he also owns guns.

But no one has charged him with a crime; he was investigated for his speech. Which, as above, knuckleheaded, tasteless, etc.

Clearly I can't say, "I am driving to Washington today to beat the snot out of Justice Antonin Scalia with this shovel" and not expect to chat with an arm of the state in short order. That's an unequivocal threat to commit criminal violence. But can I say "The Supreme Court should be horsewhipped"? What if I own a horsewhip? Can I say "The Supreme Court should be mowed down by a minivan on their way to lunch" if I own a minivan parked in Massachusetts?

Yeah, OK, the minivan may be over the line.

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-- July 2008: A gunman named Jim David Adkisson, agitated at how "liberals" are "destroying America," walks into a Unitarian Church and opens fire, killing two churchgoers and wounding four others.

-- October 2008: Two neo-Nazis are arrested in Tennessee in a plot to murder dozens of African-Americans, culminating in the assassination of President Obama.

-- December 2008: A pair of "Patriot" movement radicals -- the father-son team of Bruce and Joshua Turnidge, who wanted "to attack the political infrastructure" -- threaten a bank in Woodburn, Oregon, with a bomb in the hopes of extorting money that would end their financial difficulties, for which they blamed the government. Instead, the bomb goes off and kills two police officers. The men eventually are convicted and sentenced to death for the crime.

-- December 2008: In Belfast, Maine, police discover the makings of a nuclear "dirty bomb" in the basement of a white supremacist shot dead by his wife. The man, who was independently wealthy, reportedly was agitated about the election of President Obama and was crafting a plan to set off the bomb.

-- January 2009: A white supremacist named Keith Luke embarks on a killing rampage in Brockton, Mass., raping and wounding a black woman and killing her sister, then killing a homeless man before being captured by police as he is en route to a Jewish community center.

-- February 2009: A Marine named Kody Brittingham is arrested and charged with plotting to assassinate President Obama. Brittingham also collected white-supremacist material.

-- April 2009: A white supremacist named Richard Poplawski opens fire on three Pittsburgh police officers who come to his house on a domestic-violence call and kills all three, because he believed President Obama intended to take away the guns of white citizens like himself. Poplawski is currently awaiting trial.

-- April 2009: Another gunman in Okaloosa County, Florida, similarly fearful of Obama's purported gun-grabbing plans, kills two deputies when they come to arrest him in a domestic-violence matter, then is killed himself in a shootout with police.

-- May 2009: A "sovereign citizen" named Scott Roeder walks into a church in Wichita, Kansas, and assassinates abortion provider Dr. George Tiller.

-- June 2009: A Holocaust denier and right-wing tax protester named James Von Brunn opens fire at the Holocaust Museum, killing a security guard.

-- February 2010: An angry tax protester named Joseph Ray Stack flies an airplane into the building housing IRS offices in Austin, Texas. (Media are reluctant to label this one "domestic terrorism" too.)

-- March 2010: Seven militiamen from the Hutaree Militia in Michigan and Ohio are arrested and charged with plotting to assassinate local police officers with the intent of sparking a new civil war.

-- March 2010: An anti-government extremist named John Patrick Bedell walks into the Pentagon and opens fire, wounding two officers before he is himself shot dead.

-- May 2010: A "sovereign citizen" from Georgia is arrested in Tennessee and charged with plotting the violent takeover of a local county courthouse.

-- May 2010: A still-unidentified white man walks into a Jacksonville, Fla., mosque and sets it afire, simultaneously setting off a pipe bomb.

-- May 2010: Two "sovereign citizens" named Jerry and Joe Kane gun down two police officers who pull them over for a traffic violation, and then wound two more officers in a shootout in which both of them are eventually killed.

-- July 2010: An agitated right-winger and convict named Byron Williams loads up on weapons and drives to the Bay Area intent on attacking the offices of the Tides Foundation and the ACLU, but is intercepted by state patrolmen and engages them in a shootout and armed standoff in which two officers and Williams are wounded.

-- September 2010: A Concord, N.C., man is arrested and charged with plotting to blow up a North Carolina abortion clinic. The man, 26-year--old Justin Carl Moose, referred to himself as the "Christian counterpart to (Osama) bin Laden” in a taped undercover meeting with a federal informant.

Personally, I hope they siezed his computer and are looking into where he spends his time online and who he talked to. Sovereign nation types are the worst bunch of kooks.

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snore

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Maybe that will stop happening.

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1) They suspended his firearm license temporarily. I'm pretty sure that means while it's suspended that he can't have the guns.

2) He voluntarily turned them over even knowing he wasn't being charged.

Basically, it sounds like they wanted to look into this guy's actions given that he a) brags about having a lot of guns, and b) made potential (albeit vague) threats about killing politicians. Furthermore, his own rhetoric about being "a sovereign nation" probably didn't enamor them towards his "just joking" rollback of what he said initially. The first thing I'd do if I were going to justify my ability to shoot someone else would be to disavow the laws in place that keep me from doing it...like by declaring my house a foreign country. I'm pretty sure he also had something along the lines of "I have lots of guns and I dare them to come take these guns from me" on his about page too.

I have to figure the guy was flying under the radar enough that he could say a lot of stupid things and nobody cared enough about it to do or say anything. Finally, he tapped into the wrong zeitgeist and lit himself up a firestorm...then it was just a matter of reading a half dozen blog posts for them to figure they needed to sit down with him and talk about his actions.

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"Can we, then, seize Sarah Palin's moose rifle because of the crosshairs she drew over Rep. Giffords' district?"

While I think she's tasteless, and I certainly don't agree with her politics, I haven't seen any evidence of behavior or beliefs that are any more antisocial than the average Republican. From a mental health standpoint, it's actually reassuring that she's wanting to work within the structure and norms of the current system of government; she's directed most of her energy toward actually running for and holding offices to change the government rather than taking it over with her moose rifle.

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"Holding offices", not so much.

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"People crack dumb jokes all the time sitting at a bar or driving to the Taco Bell with their meathead friends, and it doesn't make them "credible threats," but they don't commit the Major Stupid of putting them on the internets. Kick his butt, if you know him or share a tainted gene pool with him."

Bit of a contradiction dont ya think? I like the Sarah Palin part though.

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But I was planning a vacation to Tjicistan this coming summer. Has the state dept. issued a travel warning yet?

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Travis Corcoran is not just another idiot spouting right wing rhetoric,he comes off as potentially dangerous. Join me as we look at the wit and wisdom of our boy Travis. All quotes taken from Hacker News

Early geekdom; "In 1984, when I was 13, I wrote an article on revising the AD&D combat tables, sent it in to Dragon magazine, and it was published the following year."

Fat and geeky: "In 2009 I lost 50 lbs.
In 2010 I lost ANOTHER 50 lbs.
In 2011 I'm going to lose the final 50.
(...yes, obviously, I was pretty overweight to start with!).
I payed off my mortgage last year. This year I'd like to pay off my HELOC.
I took up guitar last year, and practiced for 45 minutes per day. Going to continue that, and upload a video of me playing one memorized song per month.
I've got a dozen more resolutions - most are SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely). Most are of the form "do 1 X per Y"."

The last two quotes translate to me as "lifelong virgin".

And finally, Travis sums up American exceptionalism better than Sean Hannity ever could;

"some country borders are phenomenally obvious from space - those that separate totalitarian / communist countries from free market / democratic countries.

Look at the border between Israel and Syria.

Look at the border between North Korea and South Korea.

Look at older pictures of the border between East Germany and West Germany.

Capitalism lets people grow, innovate, and develop. Authoritarian governments stifle that.

Thus, in pictures from space, capitalist countries are well lit (if at night), or covered in crops (during the day), and countries with large governments are dark (at night) and barren (during the day)."

Now who could argue with that?!!

Add it up, people! Someone who clearly has incredible sexual frustration, a lifelong obsession with fantasy worlds, who published violent fantasies involving public servants, a is a fat self loathing narcissist who has GUNS and a lot of spare time on his hands!!

I have to ask, would you want to live next door to this idiot?

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The comments about his social interests are valid patterns in terms of assessing this guy's view of society and ability to get along with others; people with schizoid traits PLUS a lot of mention of violence and taking over the world and sovereign nations and stuff are concerning.

I don't think the comments about his weight and calling him a lifelong virgin and whatnot are constructive or necessary though. We can discuss the actually concerning aspects of this guy while still respecting him as a fellow human being (and respecting other socially impaired folks who aren't likely to harm anyone).

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but you didn't answer my question. Would you want to be Travis Corcoran's next door neighbor?

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I don't want to be most people's next-door neighbor. I'd prefer to have my own cave. On an iceburg.

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and willingness to look at him as a human being, instead of the potentially dangerous nutjob he is, as contrasting with your statement that you would never live next to him as an example of the hypocrisy of bleeding heart liberalism. I, on the other hand, just think you're a nice person.

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It's the people he talks to that gave him these ideas and the unstable individual's who eat it up that worry me more. But as for him, he seems like the type just looking to get attention and a reaction, and to thump up his internet balls.

Totally irresponsible, and irrational, but not a immediate threat.

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