Two weeks earlier, however, a federal agency had released a report that suggested at least one component of the manufacturing sector was not only still making stuff in Detroit, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, California, and thousands of other places in America, but making more of it than it had in decades. According to the “Annual Firearms Production and Export Report” from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE), American manufacturers produced 5,459,240 handguns, rifles, shotguns, and miscellaneous ordnance in 2010. (To comply with the Trade Secrets Act, the BATFE waits one year to publish these data; numbers for 2010 therefore are not published until January 2012.) It was the second year in a row the industry had attained numbers not seen since the glory days of the late Carter administration.That's true. Savage is behind on orders, based on my conversations with a dealer who's having a hard time filling orders from a distributor. Ruger is behind some million-or-so units. Everyone I've talked to in the industry says that business is great. Even the small, mom-and-pop shops who make one-off items, or do customizing, or leatherwork for the gun trade seem to be doing fine. They're working as hard as they want to work, or they're hiring help. It's a good time to be in the gun business.
Even our President wants to relax export restrictions on firearms, much to the dismay of the BATFE. As reported by Say Uncle:
U.S. homeland-security and law-enforcement agencies have objected to Obama administration proposals to relax export restrictions on high-powered firearms, threatening a centerpiece of the president’s trade and national-security agenda.
The agencies, in internal memos viewed by The Wall Street Journal, warn the changes could help arm drug cartels and terrorists and make it harder for the U.S. to crack down on gun-trafficking.I have to admit that the BATFE being concerned about arming drug cartels is a bit rich, after the Fast and Furions debacle where that agency was actively running guns into Mexico, specifically to arm the drug cartels. Still, the irony is stiff on this one.
I do notice that Representative Issa has begun contempt citations against our AG, Eric Holder (spit). Maybe Eric can explain how arming drug cartels is a good idea. Or, he might want to stand on his right to remain silent.