Posts Tagged ‘poll’

Today is election day in several states.  While the race in NJ doesn’t seem to be that big of a competition with Chris Christie holding a pretty large lead over Barbara Buono in pre-election polls, things in VA are quite different.

It may not be an extremely close race in my home state with the majority of people leaning toward Terry McAuliffe (D) but its close enough that either candidate from the Big Two could win depending on voter turnout.  The red candidate, Ken Cuccinelli (R), running as a Tea-Party supporter, is trailing enough that unless his supporters surprise everybody at the polls, he’s unlikely to win.

While I haven’t been of voting age but a few years now, I have to say this was an awful campaign from both parties.  There were almost no ads that didn’t attack the other candidate.  Very few ads featured a candidate talking about where they stand on the issues facing us right now.  Judging by where Libertarian Robert Sarvis stood in the pre-election polls, it would seem Virginians are not happy with either of our red and blue choices.

Robert Sarvis is on the ballots today as a Libertarian.  There are many out there who claim he’s not a Libertarian at all or he’s just a dressed up blue guy trying to steal votes away from The Cooch (Cuccinelli).  Regardless, Sarvis has gathered quite a bit of support with his very limited resources.  Polls were showing Sarvis having between 5 and 10 percent of the vote before election day.

I’m not a fool.  I know that Robert Sarvis has no chance of winning the election.  I’m pretty sure he knows it too.  But the fact that there is a large group of Sarvis-supporters out there show that people might be getting sick of the polarized political system we have right now.  I’m one of those people.  I voted for Sarvis.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I didn’t vote for him simply to show the other candidates that I dislike them tremendously.  I also felt like he best represented where I stand personally on political issues.  And after all, isn’t that the point of our “democracy”?  To vote for people who can represent you the best way possible?  It’s not the “vote for the lesser of two evils” system that so many people seem to think it is.  If you don’t like Candidate A or B, don’t vote for him.  Unfortunately we don’t always get an option for a Candidate C.

A lot of people blame 3rd parties in elections if their guy didn’t win.  “McCain only lost because of Gary Johnson!”  When The Cooch loses today, Republicans will blame Sarvis and say: “If all of those people had voted for Cuccinelli, he’d have won hands down!”  Well, speaking for myself, I would not have voted at all today if Sarvis hadn’t been in the race.  I just don’t think I want either of those guys to be His Excellency.

It’s also my opinion that if Sarvis had been allowed to debate with the other guys, he’d have had an even bigger following, from both the red side as well as the blue side.  Its about time that we, as Americans, get over this notion that we have to label ourselves as Republicans or Democrats, or anything at all.  We’re Americans, first and foremost.  Vote for the candidate who is best for the country, not the guy waving the same flag as you.

We’re a country, not a gang . . .

But no matter where you stand on the political spectrum or the issue of polarization in America, GO VOTE!  Get out there and show your support for whoever you choose.  Its your right to do so, so go do so.

**  UPDATE – 11/6/2013  **

As I predicted, The Cooch lost.  The blue guy won.  I was also correct in my other prediction, that people would blame Sarvis.  He received 7% of the vote which was more than enough to have elected Cuccinelli had they ALL voted for him.  Have a look at some of the comments I found in just one article about the election:

“The only reason Cuccinelli lost was because software billionaire Joe Liemandt, who just happens to be a top bundler for President Barack Obama, helped pay for professional petition circulators responsible for getting Virginia Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Robert C. Sarvis on the ballot.” – Yiddishlion

“Proof positive that an independent vote in a regular election is a wasted vote.” – Armand

“What I learned is that the Dems will support party to the death while Republicans would gladly see the demise of their party in order to jump ship and vote for a Libertarian. Cucinelli got Perot’d” – Al

“McAulife barely won only because the Dems paid for and ran a libertarian candidate that took 7% away from Cuccinelli. What it shows me is that the Tea Party remains strong and will do very well in 2014.” – NickV

“Once again a third party candidate with an ego too big for the room refuses to step aside in the last two weeks of an election, which allowed the candidate that he is in least agreement with win the election.” – I don’t think so

But then I found someone who seemed to feel as I do.  Someone who came to the same conclusion as I did when Sarvis earned that 7%:

“What it tells us is that extreme left and right politicians WON’T be tolerated.  All you elected officials need to get over your party ideology and work for US, the American people.  We are bigger than just left/right, black/white, rich/poor issues.” – Eric

I don’t know what else to say.  I’m only 23, so I know there are a lot of people out there who will discredit everything I say because I lack experience and that’s fine.  But you can’t tell me that you like the current state of affairs in this country.  You can’t tell me the system we have is working.

Then again, I guess that’s what 93% of Virginians did yesterday when they voted Red and Blue . . . so enjoy it.  Enjoy the never ending back and forth bickering.  Enjoy all the lies and deceit.  We’ve all earned it and its here to stay.

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Last week I ran a poll on my blog (its posted below as well to continue the voting) that asked what your favorite type of gun was for recreational shooting.  The choices were handguns, rifles, or shotguns.  At the end of the week there were a total of 30 votes, making it the one with the most votes so far.  Handguns won by far with 18 votes.  Rifles were next with 11 votes.  Shotguns brought up the rear with one lonely vote.

I honestly thought that rifles would have had the most, even though I personally prefer handguns as well.  The reason I thought rifles would be the favorite is because there has been such a fus lately about ARs and tactical rifles.  .223 ammo had been impossible to find for a while, so I just naturally assumed that people were more interested in shooting rifles.  But it seems I may have been wrong.

The reason I prefer handguns is just because they’re smaller and less cumbersome than a rifle. You can load up 2 or 3 pistols and head to the range for the same effort as one rifle. Ammo is smaller and generally less expensive. Rifles are fun as well, don’t get me wrong, but I just love taking my Ruger SR22 to the range and blasting through a bunch of 22s.

Here’s the poll again (over on the right) in case you didn’t get a chance to vote before I pulled it down. Let me know in the comments why you voted the way you did. What makes you prefer a handgun over a rifle or vice versa? Is it convenience or something else? Do you prefer the tactical applications your AR brings, or are you more of a Glock aficionado? Lets get the debate rolling!

Also, be sure to vote in this weeks poll (over on the left) to be part of next week’s discussion.

The poll I ran last week asked the question, “How often do you practice? (Dry-fire exercises included)”.  There were 21 votes during the week it was posted and the results were pretty much what I expected.

11 people voted that they practiced weekly, 5 voted for monthly, and 5 voted for other answers.  The results would seem to indicate that the majority of people practice every week or every month.  That’s about where I’m at as well; I usually get to practice every two weeks or so.

I’ve mentioned this before in a few older posts:  Shooting is a skill that fades quickly when you don’t practice.  Taking only a few weeks off can significantly impact your results.  Shooting a gun is much like riding a bike because you’ll never forget how to do it.  But its also like bowling because it requires precision and consistency.  When you don’t practice, it takes longer to get built back up.  You can’t stay on top of your game without practice.

I’m not suggesting you practice every day.  Who could afford the ammo for that anyway?  I do think everyone should practice though.  Its essential in order to maintain your shooting skills.  Enough time off makes you forget even the basics.  Re-learning them is almost as hard the second time as it was the first time and that’s why my current bowling average is 40 pins less than in was 3 years ago.

So this weekend (its supposed to be very nice if you live in VA or surrounding areas) get out there and practice.  I know you’ve been hoarding ammo since The Great Ammo Drought of 2013 began and so have I.  Since ammo is returning to the shelves and becoming available again finally, its time we get back out there and refine those skills we’ve worked so hard to attain!

What are your thoughts on this issue?  How often do you practice and why?  Do you think everyone should practice every day or every week?  At what point do you start losing what you’ve learned?  I’m interested to hear other peoples’ experiences on this.

I would like to thank everyone who took a second to vote in last weeks poll.  I’ve decided that I’m going to put up a new poll every week to help drive some interaction on the blog as well as give me ides for new posts, like I’m doing today.  This weeks poll can be seen to the left of my post.  It asks about your practice habits.  Take a second and vote if you will; you don’t need to be a subscriber or wordpress member to vote.

Last week’s poll asked the question:  “What’s your favorite type of rifle camo?”  There were 21 votes (as of when I pulled it) and the results are below:

  • Woodland – 5
  • Desert – 5
  • Snow – 5
  • Factory Color – 4
  • Digital – 1
  • No Camo/Wood Stock – 1

 

While there weren’t many votes compared to the views I received (over 3,700 views on the blog last week and only 21 votes) I still think it shows us something.  Camouflage really varies based on personal preference.  There are many different kinds and I really only mentioned the ones I thought were the most common, but more people voted for a pattern of some kind than none at all.

Personally, I’ve always preferred desert camo.  That’s why I purchased tan stocks from ATI for my Mini-14 and my SKS.  I just think it looks cool.  I’ve never lived in an area where it would be useful (woodland would serve me much better) but the only shooting I do is at the range and my backyard anyway.

Camouflage is used by a lot of people for hunting, that’s a given.  Having a rifle that blends in with the scenery around you helps keep you hidden.  But I think a lot of people choose camo like I do, just because they like it.  That’s why my AR15 is black and white.  Camo is as much about personalization as it is functionality.  Our firearms are an extension of our personalities.  We all like different firearms.  And we all like different camo.  We choose to express these differences with our firearms, much like we do with our cars.  We’re proud of them (most of the time), we want them to be seen.

What are your thoughts?  This is your chance to rant and rave about those of us who colorize our weapons as well.  Do you feel all camo should be functional?  Or are you the kind of person who hunts in the snow with a rifle painted tan and brown?  Feel free to link to photos of your guns as well.  Or email a copy to me and I can include them in the post. Oh and feel free to vote in the poll. Its still open and will keep adding up the total.

The other day I wrote a post asking whether or not most people store their magazines loaded or unloaded.  The more I thought about the vague title, the more I was drawn to a safety rule we’ve always had in my house:

Every gun is loaded.

We always maintain that belief at home.  Never treat a firearm like its unloaded unless you have checked yourself and know 100%.  I know of a few other families and organizations that have a rule exactly like that.  Its just really good practice to assume every firearm you touch is loaded until you can confirm otherwise yourself.

So to go one step farther, even if you maintain the belief that every gun in your home is loaded, are they?  Is it in your practice to keep your firearms loaded at all times?  I’m kinda torn on this issue because I have mixed opinions.  I obviously don’t want someone to get my firearms and accidentally shoot themselves or someone else.  I also feel keeping a firearm loaded is good for home/personal defense.  And as a family friend says, “just in case that big buck comes walking through the back yard again”.

But because of my mixed feelings, the only weapon I keep loaded is my pistol; its always within arms reach and nobody else has a chance to touch it without me knowing.  None of my 3 rifles are loaded where I store them.  I do however keep a loaded magazine close by for an emergency situation that hopefully never occurs.  But where do you stand?  Let me know because I’m really curious.

I came across a post over on EpicTactical.com that asked just one question:  Do you keep your magazines loaded or unloaded when you store them?  The author of the post shares my exact worry in this issue: “Part of me wants to say the more prepared the better and the other half worries about wearing out my springs.”

To see where other people stood on the issue there was a poll.  As of the time I viewed the post, there were 33 votes; 29 voted for loaded and 4 voted for unloaded.  That’s pretty much what I was expecting when I saw the question.

As I mentioned in the comments of the post, I like to keep some of both.  I keep about 75% of my magazines loaded and the remaining 25% unloaded.  Just eases my mind a little.  If the springs begin wearing out in the ones I keep loaded, I can start using the other ones more.  I also rotate them now and then.

I’m just more comfortable knowing that most of my magazines are loaded while others remain in unused condition.  And don’t worry, I keep the loaded and unloaded ones in separate locations so I don’t mix them up in a panic.

Maybe I’m just being paranoid.  Maybe I could keep them all loaded and nothing would happen.  I don’t know.  What do you think?  How do you store your magazines, loaded or unloaded?

I have always been a fan of free stuff.  I think most people are.  And I’ve always liked giveaways and contests.  So I thought to myself, why not offer something like that to my subscribers?

Of course, I’m not rich.  I couldn’t afford to give away a large amount of anything.  Or anything even slightly expensive.  But I have been stocking up on ammo lately (I have more than I need right now) and if my viewers show enough interest, I would consider doing a weekly giveaway of a box or two.

The goal of this giveaway would be to get more subscribers and drive more interaction on my blog.  I love hearing what other people have to say about the topics I discuss and that would probably be a key part of any giveaway that I offered.

But this wont happen at all if nobody shows any interest.  I’ve made a poll to see how many viewers would be interested in a giveaway.  If I see a majority of people are interested, I’ll consider giving some stuff away.  If I get more subscribers, I’ll definitely come up with something.

The poll will be up for a week.