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 "Punching One's Ticket" 
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 Post subject: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 10:30 am 
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This post is not meant to disparage any Minnesota carry instructor. It is meant to solicit responses, and hopefully gin up some activity around here. :lol:

Currently I am looking to renew my permit. On this and other boards I am presented with a wide variety of instructors, at a wide variety of prices. Some acquaintances of mine have labeled me as being "cheap". I suspect that is because they are thrifty with their words. :roll: Nevertheless, I am tight with a dollar when I need to be.

For a person who is renewing their permit, why is it necessary to take a course that goes beyond the statutory minimum? For example, I have been carrying for the past five years successfully. That is, I have not had occasion to shoot anyone, and I have been keeping regular with my target practice and firearm handling disciplines. Why would I want to shoot a 50 or 60 or even 75 round elaborate timed qualification testing my "strong" and "weak" sides when 20 shots would do?

Simply put, why wouldn't a $45.00 course serve me as well as one that is $245.00 or more? At this point in my life I am looking to obtain a certificate to facilitate my renewal, and that is it. In my case I try to stay updated on carry issues in Minnesota. I also make a strong attempt to stay updated on carry issues for all of the states that I am allowed to carry in, possibly more of an attempt than with strictly Minnesota issues since laws vary from state to state.

Are there any instructors out there unable to contain their urge to point out the errors of my way?


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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 10:49 am 
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Knowing you as well as I do (through an internet forum) I would think it might actually be valuable for the carry community as a whole for you to take the cheapest class you can find and report back on your impressions.

I know that the media tried the same trick when the law was first passed and they ended up taking a class from DonL and were very surprised at how good the class was.

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 10:57 am 
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I can't point out your errors, because I don't think you're making any, given that you're just looking to purchase the commodity.

The ticket -- the certificate -- is a commodity. If all that you're interested in getting is the commodity, get it as inexpensively and conveniently as possible. I know of one instructor who will do about ten minutes of paperwork and talking with you, and then a pretty extensive shooting qualification over about half an hour, for example. And there's another who I'm pretty sure would do the "training" over lunch, followed by a quick qual at the range.

As an activist, I'd purely love for you to take a Coconut Charley class, and report back publicly on it.

This guy has made the claim that he will not be undersold. At present, the lowest price I can find is one of the Joe Penaz specials -- $37.50. He may be able to match or beat that.

Hope this helps.

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 11:11 am 
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I note that one of these folks has misspelled "Second Amendment" on their page at: http://www.mngunpermit.com/index.html

If I was up for my renewal, I suspect I would go with a cheaper class just to see (and document) the experience.. and see how it compared to both my original class and the instructors that I've met since then and taken other classes from (such as DonL, etc)

B

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 11:19 am 
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DeanC wrote:
Knowing you as well as I do (through an internet forum) I would think it might actually be valuable for the carry community as a whole for you to take the cheapest class you can find and report back on your impressions.

I know that the media tried the same trick when the law was first passed and they ended up taking a class from DonL and were very surprised at how good the class was.
Although that was not the way that the story was headlined; it was something like, "Conceal and Carry Class taught at used car lot." Horribly unfair.

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 11:45 am 
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bstrawse wrote:
I note that one of these folks has misspelled "Second Amendment" on their page at: http://www.mngunpermit.com/index.html

B
He misspelled his own website on his Craigslist add -- he has it as mngunpremit.com, which, as it turns out, is owned by somebody else.

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 12:02 pm 
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To the extent that there is a statistical trend line that suggests "more co$t = better instructor" (or the converse, "lower co$t = crappy instructor"), it is not fool proof. There are many outliers.

In the past several years, I have seen and observed dozens of instructors across Minnesota and the mid-west, in everything from State mandated/approved permit classes, NRA classes and more advanced skill classes. Based upon this observation, I have concluded that cost is one of the least realiable factors in determining quality of instruction.

I like to think that I am excellent at whatever cost I charge. 8)

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 12:28 pm 
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DeanC wrote:
Knowing you as well as I do (through an internet forum) I would think it might actually be valuable for the carry community as a whole for you to take the cheapest class you can find and report back on your impressions.


Dean, I would love to do that. However, I am only one person, with my own set of prejudices going in and coming out. If I obtain the "commodity", as Joel puts it, I have been successful, no matter what transpires in the classroom or at the range. My views beyond the success may or may not be accurate, witness the "Twelve Blind Men and an Elephant" parable.

I have noticed on this and other forums many posts that I pigeon-hole as being pedantic in nature. Am I passing judgement? No, just making a personal observation. In fact, I find those pedantic posts, and the graphics to be helpful. I apply my own "Scott Rule"* to the entire matter. While I am sure those posts stung the targets, and while I am also sure that the targets resisted change out of a sense of personal pride, I have no doubt that they have cleaned up their act to one degree or another.

However, should I take a course by one of those that have been lampooned, I run the risk of being myself characterized by those doing the lampooning as pissing on their leg. I have no intention of doing that, nor of giving that impression.

I posted this to get input from instructors as to why they consider their class to be better than the competition. I have a great deal of competition in my field, in some cases tens of thousands of competitors in countries world-wide. I have to articulate to prospective clients exactly why I am better for them and those they represent. That is what I had hoped to get as replies.

*The Scott Rule: Some years ago I went into a McDonald's to get a fast meal of pancakes with no sausage for my wife and myself. As I was waiting in line (there being only one cash register open) the young lady clerk became frazzled by the large number of customers and yelled to a young man, Scott, to come help her. He had been bagging up garbage from the waste and tray facilities. I need not mention which McDonald's since it doesn't matter that it is located on Maryland and Prosperity.

Scott dutifully dropped what he had been doing and came around behind the counter. He put his code into a cash register and, looking me in the eye, announced "May I help someone here?" I watch food hygiene very closely. In my travels I try to avoid being poisoned or just made sick. While I had eye contact with Scott I inquired somewhat loudly: "Scott, did you wash your hands before going behind the counter to handle food? I just saw you handling garbage." As soon as I made that announcement the patrons that had lined up at Scott's cash register came back into my line. Scott continued to stare at me as he walked toward the back of the food preparation area. At no time did I see him wash his hands. No doubt Scott had a strong sense of pride and would not allow me to intimidate or coerce him into washing his hands. Was I being rude? No, not at all. I would bet that every time in the future that Scott handled garbage he probably thought of me, or of the incident, and he then washed his hands afterward.


Last edited by Traveler on Mon Aug 16, 2010 4:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 12:33 pm 
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Traveler wrote:
However, should I take a course by one of those that have been lampooned, I run the risk of being myself characterized by those doing the lampooning as pissing on their leg.
Nah. As the Chief Lampooner, I'll tell you that you run the risk of those being lampooned (and the men who love them) claiming -- with bad spelling and worse hysteria -- that you're part of a conspiracy to parody them out of business, but that's about it.

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 3:35 pm 
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The "teaser" for the story I was in went like this: "Get your gun training at a used car dealership or a Perkins restaurant-tune in Tuesday at nine".

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 7:20 am 
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Addenda:

Per Dean's suggestion, is anyone interested in a short report on a "down and dirty" inexpensive renewal class? If there is interest I will attempt to make it as unbiased as possible with comparisons to two other classes I attended, one moderately priced and one high-end. However, no names will be given. If you can figure it out independently then you are wise beyond your years. :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 7:26 am 
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Sure.

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 12:25 pm 
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joelr wrote:
He misspelled his own website on his Craigslist add -- he has it as mngunpremit.com, which, as it turns out, is owned by somebody else.

You know, I am still sort of a man with two minds on the whole parody thing, but damn, I know irony when I see it. This typo and the resultant capitalization thereof has me nearly changing my pants because of involuntary urine emissions.

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 Post subject: Re: "Punching One's Ticket"
PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 12:56 pm 
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Actually, while MNgunpremit.com leads to a parody site, mngunpermit.com is only a parody of the "self" variety.

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