“Poor Mexico. So far from God and so close to the United States.”–Porfirio Diaz, president and later dictator of Mexico.

Of late I’ve been bombarded by e-mails warning of the Blair Holt Licensing and Record Act of 2009 (HR 45), a gun control measure that would require among many other provisions, a federally issued license for anyone who wants to own a firearm. The law would be so expensive, so cumbersome, and so obviously unworkable that all but the hardest-core gun haters in Congress would probably not support it.

I think that when the next big push for more gun laws comes, it will come in this form: This past week, NBC News and The New York Times ran stories on how straw-man gun purchases in the United States are supplying the Mexican drug wars with small arms and bigger stuff as well. (NBC identified an M-2 Browning .50 machine gun as a rifle. What else is new?)

But the shooting is reaching levels where it is attracting too much attention (in February, 250 people were killed in Juarez alone) and American college students have been warned that if they want to be drunken a******s this spring, they should do it somewhere other than Mexico.

So what we are going to see, sooner or later, is a call to toughen purchase laws in the U.S., particularly at gun shows. These measures will be presented as necessary for national security. It is well known that if you say “national security” to Congress, that body instantly messes its collective britches and votes for whatever law is put before it. Anyone who opposes the bill will be called unpatriotic, and will immediately cave. We have seen this work time and time again over the past 8 years.

So brace yourself. As Hamlet said, “…If it be not now, yet ’twill come. The readiness is all.”