This Henry Rifle (top) and Winchester Model 1866 fetched record prices at auction recently.

Snap Shots: Record auction price for Henry Rifle

Henry Rifle blasts price record at auction; the Mercury focuses on real gun issues; state park shooting suspension worries SSAA; Milne in denial over Greens senior staff exodus; WA Green senator may be outed by Shooters and Fishers Party; Inaugural SFP Field Archers and Bowhunters branch meeting video.


Henry Rifle blasts price record at auction

Blue steel proved to be pure gold at a Sept. 13-15 auction in Rock Island, Illinois, according to NRA website The Daily Caller. The three-day event at the Rock Island Auction Company grossed $13.1 million in sales, taking bids from all 50 states and 25 countries. And in the hustle and bustle of the company’s preview hall a handful of firearms stole the show in the 2700-piece sale. The two most anticipated firearms were from the renowned Mac McCroskie Winchester collection, the highest grossing lot of the weekend. An iron frame Henry Rifle realised a world-record price for a standard 19th-century made American rifle at $603,750 (AUD$644,250). And a gold plated factory relief Winchester Model 1866, engraved and signed by Conrad F. Ulrich, was equally as sought after, demanding $437,000 (AUD$466,315) for ownership.


Mercury story addresses real gun issue

Law-abiding firearms owners don’t get a lot of fair play in the general media, which generally focusses on negative gun issues, so it was pleasing to read an article by The Mercury journalist Greg Barns this week. Barns’ article, Futile Call on Firearm Control, focussed on the real issues of gun crime in Tasmania, prompted by the recent gathering of anti-gun lobbyists protesting gun law amendments. “Emotion and supposition should not replace sound evidence about guns, any more than it should about any other area of government intervention in the lives of individuals,” Barns writes. He adds that drug crime is the real issue with its propensity to attract a gun culture, and abolishing all guns “would be a recipe for large-scale criminal activity in gun trafficking”. He also importantly brought up the issue of onus of proof. “The onus of proof should not be reversed. That is, individuals who are seeking a licence should not have to prove anything. It is up to the state to prove that a person is unsuitable.” His article received support in the comments section beneath it, proving that he’s tapped into a widespread attitude in the state.


State park shooting suspension worries SSAA

The Sporting Shooters Association says it hopes a suspension of shooting feral animals in state parks will be lifted before numbers get out of control, an ABC report says. Culling has been on hold since a member of the association was shot in the foot while working to reduce goat numbers about six months ago. SafeWork SA has been investigating. Association South Australian president David Handyside says the longer nothing is done, the more damage animals can do. “The environment in a lot of cases is being regenerated in a lot of the government areas and many years’ work can be reversed if for instance they’ve (feral animals) eaten a lot of replanted forestry in certain areas,” he said. Mr Handyside says there is anecdotal evidence of rising deer numbers in the Adelaide Hills. “They’re now spreading into commercial properties where crops are being grown and encroaching on roads,” he said.


Greens senior staff exodus

Greens leader Christine Milne is in denial after six of her top advisors quit their positions amid speculation of leadership issues at the party. Chief of staff Ben Oquist was among the exodus of senior Greens who lost a quarter of their support at the election in what has been seen as a backlash against its extremist ideology. Among the others to desert the floundering Greens leader were director of communications Georgie Klug, policy adviser Oliver Woldring, climate change adviser, economics adviser and campaign co-ordinator. “There’s no panic or nothing to be concerned about,” she said. “This is pretty normal for political offices.” However, political commentators are suggesting the exodus is a sign that there is trouble at the top. Mr Oquist issued a statement saying he was leaving with good will but cited “fundamental differences of opinion about strategy”. Asked about his reason, Senator Milne said: “interesting that Ben would say that.” She said there had been differences of opinion on how the office would run, she favoured a flat administrative structure while he wanted a more hierarchical structure. Whatever the issue, it’s clear the Greens are on the nose both internally and among the voting public.


WA Green may be outed by SFP

Western Australia Green senator Scott Ludlam’s future in parliament is hanging on by a thread as preferences continue to be counted to decide the final Senate makeup. With more support for the Shooters and Fishers Party coming in from the seat of O’Connor, which covers the goldfields in a large area in the south-western third of the state, preference flows are likely to see yet another Green bite the dust with the Palmer United Party’s Zhenya Wang in the running to take the last Senate seat. In a report in The Australian, ABC election analyst Antony Green said the change in the race had come about due to preference distributions from Australian Christians and the Shooters and Fishers Party.


Inaugural SFP bowhunters branch meeting

A series of Youtube videos has been posted showing the inaugural meeting of the Shooters and Fishers Party Field Archers and Bowhunters Branch (SFP FAB). The five-part series shows the process of setting up the branch and is a good record of the people involved and the doctrines the branch represents. The first has organiser Garry Mallard introducing the meeting and the reasons for starting the FAB branch, the next has SFP’s Robert Brown MLC explaining what’s required to form a branch of the SFP, in the third Peter Johnson explains how to operate and organise the branch, part four has Robert Brown formalises the meeting and forms the steering committee, then the final part features Garry Mallard talking about the future for the branch and the party.




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Justin Law