When Gun-control Nation thinks about the organizations which promote guns, the first one that always comes to mind is the National Rifle Association because, after all, the NRA has been the group which has been leading the gun charge for more than one hundred years.

There’s also the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which runs Gun-nut Nation’s annual trade SHOT show.

The group whose activities really determine how the gun industry behaves, however, is a small and not-so-public group known as the National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers, or NASGW. This outfit represents the 30 wholesalers who are responsible for selling and moving just about all the guns and ammunition made in America which wind up on the shelves of the retail stores that sell guns.

There isn’t a single gun-control advocate or a single gun-control researcher who is a member of the NASGW other than me. But why bother to learn anything about the industry that you want to regulate just because you want the industry to operate in a more responsible way?

Yesterday I received an email from the NASGW asking me to sign a letter opposing the nomination of David Chipman to head the ATF.  I received a similar email from the NRA, except the NASGW letter is going to be sent directly to Joe Manchin, whose vote on any issue before the Senate has now become the litmus test for what Joe Biden will get done and what he won’t get done.

Or to put it another way, what Joe Biden will do to wreck the United States. That’s the way that Biden is being described by Donald Trump. Remember Donald Trump? He used to be a tenant in a very nice apartment located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, D.C. Now he’s just a blowhard and a schmuck. Anyway…

So, the battle lines are forming over the Chipman vote, with all my friends in Gun-control Nation certainly hoping that his nomination will be approved. After all, this is a guy who retired from the ATF and then went to work for the gun-control gang! He’s still employed by Gabby Giffords, and he’s also said some nice things about Mayor Mike.  In other words, to quote Grandpa, he’s nisht gut – no good.

Leaving all the sturm und drang about Chipman aside, I still don’t understand what difference it makes who is Director of the ATF when it comes to reducing the 125,000 fatal and non-fatal injuries each year caused by the illegal or inappropriate use of guns. This is because I have yet to understand the connection between a bunch of overpaid clerks who wander into a gun shop and spend a couple of weeks making sure that every piece of paperwork is filled out exactly right and the decision by roughly 7% of the guys who try to kick the sh*t out of someone else and do it by using a gun.

The ATF would like to consider itself a federal law enforcement agency on a par with the DEA and the FBI. It’s not. It’s job and most of its budget is used either to provide technical services to other agencies or to pay these so-called Industry Operations Investigators who first must spend 10 weeks becoming “experts in firearms and explosives federal laws and regulations.” They are also trained to “analyze trends and recognize patterns of trafficking and diversion schemes.”

There’s only one little problem with all this training going on at the ATF. When it comes to guns, there doesn’t happen to be any Federal law which either defines or tries to prevent gun trafficking. In fact, Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) is the latest in a long line of Members of Congress who have introduced gun-trafficking bills over the last few years. Know where these bills end up? Three guesses and none of them count.

I like David Chipman and I hope his nomination goes through. But If all he’s going to do is manage a government agency which is responsible for enforcing a law that doesn’t exist, to quote Grandpa again, gai gezinta hai (read: who cares?)