July 20, 2009

Almost Under the Radar: FBI Agent Arrested After Guns He Sold Were Tied to Mexican Cartels

When the Attorney General and President told us that Americans were responsible for Mexican drug cartel violence, I guess we should have pressed them on just how close to the issue they were.

An FBI agent was arrested in early July for illegally selling Barret M82 .50 caliber rifles that made their way into the hands of the cartels, including one confiscated in a raid in March of last year. The agent John T. Shipley, purchased at least 54 firearms from a variety of sources, and sold at 51 of them illegally for a profit, according to his indictment.

The agent sold three .50-caliber semi-automatic sniper rifles, several Remington 700 rifles in .308, and two DPMS LR-308 .308 rifles, all which would be very suitable for the assassination of Mexican police officers and military personnel from hundreds of yards away. Shipley was apparently comfortable with turning a profit even if it meant fellow officers could end up in the sights of the rifles he sold.

You would think such a story of a cop supplying criminals with the weapons to kill other cops would be prime-time news fodder, but the first I heard of this story was an accidental link I stumbled across while researching another story.

Funny, that.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at July 20, 2009 01:59 PM

And at the first link, an El Paso Deputy Sheriff was the one funneling the guns HOME. Dang.

Posted by: Paul Mitchell at July 20, 2009 02:36 PM

You mean to say that there are already laws on the books to deal with these gun sales ...

Posted by: Neo at July 20, 2009 03:52 PM

Maybe we should start doing background checks on FBI agents.

Posted by: Tim at July 20, 2009 04:33 PM

Now, that IS truly amazing that the MSM hasn't picked up on that story. Most of the MSM seems to favor more gun control and doesn't seem to support the 2nd Amendment. I'm really surprised that they haven't covered this news story to support their views.

I've been hoping that a topic like this one would appear. Why, you might ask? Ahhhhhh, that brings us to the heart of the matter.

As many of you know who are regulars at this forum, I'm what many would consider to be a "Liberal", politically speaking. Many of my positions on topics of the day would be referred to as "the liberal point of view". In fact, I've been called every name in the book because of my positions on many issues.

You see, I interpret the Second Amendment from a very liberal point of view. What does that mean? It means that I interpret the Second liberally, in the TRUE sense of the definition of the word liberal, politics aside.

It means that, from my point of view, the Second Amendment guarantees citizens the individual right to keep and bear arms and that our Constitutional Right to do so is not contingent upon our being a part of a militia. Gasp! Now, I'm beginning to sound like a "conservative", huh?

A conservative interpretation of the Second, again, politics aside, talking about the dictionary meaning of the terms liberal and conservative, would mean that our right to keep and bear arms WOULD be contingent upon our being a part of a militia.

Our political nomenclature is all so very confusing!! Here I am, a Liberal on many political issues, liberally interpreting the Second Amendment from a non political point of view, and I come off sounding like a political Conservative because I do interpret the Second Amendment "liberally", in the true sense of the word.

Yes, one would think that the "liberal" MSM would be all over this story like a hog on slop or white on rice to further their agenda of more gun control laws. If an FBI agent, a trusted officer of the law, can allegedly be corrupted and compromised to illegally sell guns on the black market for a profit, then surely normal every day citizens can't be trusted to "keep and bear arms" responsibly. That, of course, would be a politically liberal point of view.

Just goes to show, a perfect example, of how meaningless the terms conservative and liberal really are in reality when applied to politics!

As for the FBI agent, if guilty as charged and convicted, off with is head! Wait! Would that be liberal or conservative punishment?

HELP! I'm confused!

Posted by: Dude at July 20, 2009 04:49 PM


Your point highlights perfectly what today's "liberals" are all about: more government with greater control over more of our life. Even Alexander Hamilton would have been shocked at this level of intrusion.

Of course, they aren't liberal--they are statists. Mostly fuzzy-headed statists, but statists nonetheless. Even a hard-headed socialist like Christopher Hitchens has more in common with todays "conservatives" than with the current batch of so-called liberals.

All of this reminds me of how the debased our political language has become with regard to "left" and "right". What the left likes to characterize as "right" is really just a slight variation in leftism--fascism vs socialism. And somehow, in some warped view of politics, anarchists and classic liberals are midway on that scale. And yet this insane notion has become an accepted definition in our political discourse!

Posted by: iconoclast at July 20, 2009 05:09 PM

Iconoclast says,in part, and I agree 100%: All of this reminds me of how debased our political language has become with regard to "left" and "right". And yet this insane notion has become an accepted definition in our political discourse!

Well said!! I'll tell you why I think that this foolishly simplistic debasement of political language in regards to honest political discourse has come to be accepted: It's a very successful and profitable marketing ploy. Keep it simple.

Right versus Left, Conservative versus Liberal is a very profitable business, not that I have anything against profit, mind you. Let's face it, so called "Conservative" talk radio and Television is a very profitable business, much more so than their "Liberal" counterparts. There's basically no market for "Liberal talk radio". It doesn't sell well. Fine with me. Neither conservative nor liberal pundits have much effect on my beliefs.

For the most part, it's entertainment. The vast majority of talk radio's contribution to real and honest political discourse is akin to the contribution of so called "Professional" Wrestling to real Professional Sports, no offense intended to wrestling. At least most people know that's staged entertainment.

Oh well, to each their own. Today's blue ribbon for newsworthy commentary goes to CY for bringing to our attention an event that is truly newsworthy but will likely get very little or any coverage from any MSM outlet, Fox included, though I normally don't consider them to be MSM.

Posted by: Dude at July 20, 2009 06:16 PM

I'm not buying it, Dude.

"Liberal", huh?

"Words of this kind are often used in a consciously dishonest way. That is, the person who uses them has his own private definition, but allows his hearer to think he means something quite different." - Orwell

It's clear to anyone who cares to pay attention what a modern Liberal is, and it's not good. You use a concept from 150 years ago and claim that it applies today. You're a Liberal alright. You're smart enough to know better too.

As for selling Barrets to gangs so they can kill cops?

I'm against it, but that's just me.

Posted by: brando at July 20, 2009 09:15 PM

You only partially nailed it, brando, with his use of the 'dictionar definitions' of "liberal" and "conservative". His argument in this case is a non sequitur by this technique.

Iconoclast gets the other half by noting 'modern liberal' versus 'modern conservative' (though he does not explicitly say it.

Dictionary shorts:
Liberal = construe broadly
Conservative = construe narrowly

Political shorts:

'Classic liberal' = wanting the maximum liberty for the individual. (The signers of the Declaration of Independence fall here.)

'Classic conservative' = more control of the individual by the state. (King George III falls here.)

'Modern liberal' = 'classic conservative - as demonstrated by their actions and opinions.

'Modern conservative' = 'classic liberal' - as demonstrated by their actions and opinions.

(RINOs fall closer to 'Modern liberal')

(Ain't the English language fun? :D)


Posted by: PhyCon at July 20, 2009 10:58 PM

Brando, Finally! We agree on something. I, too, am against selling guns to gangs so that they can kill cops. To be perfectly honest, I don't care if the gangs kill each other. Of course, that ain't a liberal or conservative issue.........That's just common sense.

Dr. Ron Paul has a lot of good ideas, several of which would make make the whole issue of gangs and gangs killing cops disappear for the most part, if implemented. That ain't likely to happen, though. There's way too much money being made fighting "the war on drugs", for example, to allow it to end.

There's no doubt that I'm a more of a liberal than a conservative, in the political sense of the words. As usual, you miss my point, man.

There's not a thing dishonest in my previous posts. Furthermore, my examples of the words liberal and conservative, with no political connotations attached, are right on the money. PhyCon nailed with his dictionary shorts. My definitions aren't "private definitions". What you don't like is that I refuse to let OTHER people define me according to their narrow and simplistic terminology. As I've said before, I'm both a conservative liberal and a liberal conservative, politically speaking. I don't think that you can grasp that concept. I think that in your world a person is either one or the other. Sorry, there's millions of us right here in America that don't fit into the box that the pundits have created. Guess what? We're patriots, too!

PhyCon: YES!! The English language is FUN!

Posted by: Dude at July 21, 2009 12:05 AM

"You would think such a story of a cop supplying criminals with the weapons to kill other cops would be prime-time news fodder, but the first I heard of this story was an accidental link I stumbled across while researching another story."

Oh, it would - if there was a Republican in the White House!

Posted by: GEJ at July 21, 2009 04:49 PM

It seems to me the FBI Agent has committed at least Two federal Crimes.

First the Straw Man Purchase, in that he purchased the Firearms in order to resell them.
And of course each Firearm would count as a separate offense.

Second would be, Engaging in the Business of Dealing in Arms.
Anything over a certain number in a one year period would require that you obtain an FFL.
Not sure where the threshold is on that.

Posted by: SwedeBoy at July 23, 2009 10:22 PM