WILTZ: Some thoughts about the Colorado shooting spreeWhen I fish from a boat, I don’t wear my hearing aids for fear of losing one.
By: Roger Wiltz, The Daily Republic
When I fish from a boat, I don’t wear my hearing aids for fear of losing one. It cost me dearly the other day. We were in the fast water beneath the Randall Dam watching another boat land a good-sized fish. We asked the angler what it was, but with the roar and all, I didn’t hear the answer. Later I asked Jerry, my partner, what the fish was. Jerry said the angler thought it was an Asian carp. Possible? Yes. I would have liked to examine the fish.
That same day a friend showed me a photo of a recent limit of northern pike. They ranged in weight from 10 to 18 pounds. If you’re interested, I’d suggest trolling a Rattlin’ Rap in 6-12 feet of water over structure on Francis Case or Lewis and Clark. You could say these fish came from above ... as in Sharpe or Oahe. I’ve also heard of a paddle fish die off in the Springfield area.
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Because I see myself as being quite conservative, it almost hurts for me to say that a bank is a poor place to keep savings. Bank interest rates aren’t even keeping up with our dollar’s declining buying power. So, do we sit back and watch in dismay, or do we do our best to find a profitable investment?
While we should have had the courage to invest more than we did, the stock market has performed well for Betsy and me the past four years. When the economy hit the doldrums and unemployment began to escalate, we figured that people might have to cut back on dining in better restaurants, but they won’t quit eating out. McDonald’s looked good, and it proved to be a good choice. Are there other stocks that will allow us sportsmen to utilize those things we are knowledgeable about?
If we hunt or simply buy a gun for home protection, we know about Sturm, Ruger, & Co. or RGR, its symbol on the New York Stock Exchange. Next to John Browning, the greatest gun designer in history, Bill Ruger stands above all others. RGR is its own corporation, not part of a conglomerate like Remington. RGR is all about guns.
Think about the icon guns Ruger has developed. To gun people, they are household words: The Mark I & II .22 semi-auto pistols, the 10/22 rifle, Black Hawk single-action pistols, Red Hawk double-action pistols, the No.1 single-shot rifle, the Mini-14 rifle, and the Red Label O/U shotgun. Ruger has also developed a number of its own cartridge designations such as the .375 Ruger Magnum.
I can’t take credit for dreaming up today’s topic. While visiting with Mitchell’s Craig Freidel about investments a few weeks ago, Craig mentioned that I should have bought some Ruger stock four years ago. When I got home, I went to the computer to see what I could learn about Ruger.
On Dec. 1, 2008, RGR opened on the NYSE at $5.90. As I write this column, RGR is around $50. It does fluctuate. On May 2, it opened at $58.19. On June 8, it opened at $34.87. I’m not knowledgeable enough to explain RGR’s current roller coaster performance, but I can tell you what’s going on at RGR. It certainly looks good.
At the end of March, RGR announced that it had received first quarter orders for 1 million guns! They weren’t going to take any additional orders until they could fill the orders they had. Analysts said that the surge in orders related directly to a fear that President Obama would be re-elected in November. I can say this about our president. Though his personal views are anti-gun, he has certainly stimulated our nation’s firearms industry!
While looking over RGR’s market report on the computer, a morbid thought occurred to me. Did the terrible July 20 tragedy in Aurora affect RGR stock? Did it go up for fear that the president might try to enact new anti-gun legislation? I’m glad to report that when the NYSE opened the Monday morning after Friday’s shooting, there was no appreciable difference in price.
Do I dare make a recommendation regarding RGR stock? No, I’m not qualified. But, if on the day before the November election it looks like Obama may win, I’ll probably buy a few shares of RGR.
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I mentioned the Aurora, Colo., shooting in the above discussion. My thoughts about the victims and their families, the mentally disturbed people on our streets, and guns have run rampant. I had no solutions to the problem until I saw Bill O’Reilly interview Charles Krauthammer on the FOX news network. They talked about Aurora. I feel that Krauthammer is by far the most talented of all TV news analysts, and for this reason I paid close attention.
I didn’t know that Dr. Krauthammer was a psychiatrist. The doctor stated that gun control would not solve the problem. He went on to say that in his early days of psychiatric practice, he had the authority to take dangerous people off of the street. He said that those days are gone. In today’s world, there are too many lawyers looking for people who are deprived of their rights whether it is justifiable or not. The result? Dangerous, mentally deranged people are at large in our society.
In a perfect world, doctors would have the courage to recommend institutionalization, courts would uphold their recommendations, and lawyers would have the professionalism to recognize and support their decisions. Our world may never get there, but we can work toward that end.
*See you next week.