Logorrheatorium

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The Week That Was: A Compendium of Reactions to the Reactions of the Tucson Shootings

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“I hope that I don’t have to write about this issue any more, I find it so disgusting.”
Dennis Mangan

Amen. Unless the left can find some way to make their politicking of this tragedy even more despicable (and, trust me, if anyone can find a way to do just that, it’d be liberals), I should hope this will be the last time I’ll find myself on this topic.

What we learned about the Tucson shooter, Jared Loughner:

  • His favorite books, as listed on his YouTube and MySpace pages, included Hitler’s Mein Kampf, Marx’s The Communist Manifesto, and Barrie’s Peter Pan.
  • High school friends described him as “liberal”, “far left”, and a “pothead”.
  • More recent friends described him as completely oblivious to politics, news, or other current events—not watching TV, reading newspapers, and certainly not listening to “talk radio” (i.e., Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, Levin, Savage, etc.).
  • He was a registered Independent…and did not vote in the 2010 mid-term elections.
  • He apparently was an adherent of wild conspiracy theories encapsulated in the film “Zeitgeist“, which advanced, amongst other things, “trutherism” (i.e., the contention that George Bush and an international cabal of Zionist bankers blew up the Twin Towers and pinned the blame on innocent Muslims).
  • He seemed to have developed his grudge against Giffords when she failed to adequately answer (by his crazy standards) a completely insane question of his…in 2007 (i.e., before anyone knew of Sarah Palin, long before the Tea Parties came into existence, and during the time when anti-Bush/anti-Cheney hysteria was at a fever pitch).
  • He was clearly psychotic to anyone unfortunate enough to be around him for even a brief period of time.
  • He had multiple contacts with the law due to his erratic and unpredictable behavior.
  • He was kicked out of college for his psychotic behavior and subsequent concern for the safety of students and faculty—some of whom had written of their expectations of him eventually going on a shooting rampage—and would not be allowed to return until he sought professional help.
  • His teachers, friends, acquaintances, etc., all described him as being completely out of touch with reality, existing purely in a world of his own.
  • His paranoid delusions about government mind control (via the use of grammar—so I guess a tinfoil hat wouldn’t help); his delusions of grandeur (he, alone, could see the truth via his dreaming and proper grammar while everyone else was “illiterate”); his inability to articulate coherent thoughts (as evidenced by his nonsensical YouTube videos and other writings); his wildly disproportionate and violent fixation on Giffords for what was probably not even a mild slight; his reportedly frequent “drifting off” in mid-sentence or thought and being “in another world” (think of reports of Socrates’s frequent and abrupt catatonia); and his obsession with “conscience [sic] dreaming” as perhaps indicative of auditory (Socrates’s “Daemonion”) and/or visual hallucinations—what does this suggest even to the lay person with only the slightest awareness of mental illnesses? Textbook paranoid schizophrenia, no? (Note that this speculative diagnosis has been buoyed by Harvard-educated psychiatrist Dr. Charles Krauthammer’s identical admittedly speculative assessment.)

What we learned about the propaganda wing of the Liberal Establishment:

“People are dead, and the first thing they have to do is go to politics. No wonder the country hates the media.”
Pat Caddell, Red Eye

“What you’re seeing at that moment is a TV camera crew, which had been filming Roy Wilson’s speech for possible use as a soundbite in that evening’s news broadcast, realizing that the guy was going off-message — so they simply switched off the camera’s photo lights and stopped filming him because his speech no longer fit the media’s predetermined narrative. They went to the vigil to report on a ‘respectful’ event, and by golly they were going to bring back a report about a ‘respectful’ event, regardless of what actually occurred. That’s how subtle media bias can be — simply switching off the camera when inconvenient things start happening.”
“Zombie”, Word-salad of Hate at Oakland Vigil for Tucson Victims

“Again, why would World News opt to omit all this [ed.: i.e., that the recipient of the unequivocal death threat made by one of Loughner’s shooting victims was the head of Arizona Tea Party]?
“Might it have gone counter to Muir’s contentions that this was a community that has really come together? ‘No matter what side they’re from, they want consensus.’
“This also wouldn’t fit with Amanpour’s claim, ‘It’s absolutely remarkable, and that’s what has impressed so many people, how the community has reacted, how they’ve bonded, how they want to go forward, and how even though there are still differences of political opinion, today we saw them wanting to carry on an honest dialogue as they said, but a reasonable and rational one.’
“A man issuing a death threat to a Tea Partier is hardly a picture of a reasonable and rational dialogue, is it?
“On the other hand, if Fuller was the Tea Party member, and Humphries was the shooting survivor, do you think ABC would have been concerned about presenting a unified community, or would this report focused extensively on a conservative making such a death threat?
“Seems a metaphysical certitude the latter would have been the case.”
Noel Sheppard, ABC World News Reports Threat at its Tucson Town Hall, Omits it Was Made to a Tea Partier

“In the wake of the Fort Hood massacre in November 2009, the editorial board of the New York Times urged:
“>> ‘In the aftermath of this unforgivable attack, it will be important to avoid drawing prejudicial conclusions from the fact that Major Hasan is an American Muslim whose parents came from the Middle East.’
“Yet for some reason, that sense of caution was strangely absent in today’s editorial on the tragic shooting in Arizona:
“>> ‘It is facile and mistaken to attribute this particular madman’s act directly to Republicans or Tea Party members. But it is legitimate to hold Republicans and particularly their most virulent supporters in the media responsible for the gale of anger that has produced the vast majority of these threats, setting the nation on edge.'”
Philip Klein, A Study in Contrasts: NYT on Ft. Hood and Arizona Shootings

“Shamefully and sadly, the media would have covered his horrific assassination attempt of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz) and slaying and maiming of innocent Arizonans in a more responsible manner. They would have called for restraint and not violated the journalistic tenet of not assuming anything, a tenet they purportedly (and often facetiously sanctimoniously) claim to hold dear.”
Tony Lee, What If Jared Loughner Was Muslim?

“‘It is facile and mistaken to attribute this particular madman’s act directly to Republicans Islam or Tea Party members Muslims. But it is legitimate to hold Republicans Muslims and particularly their most virulent supporters in the media responsible for the gale of anger that has produced the vast majority of these threats, setting the nation on edge.’ Would the New York Times ever have published that version?”
Andy Levy, Redeye

“Not only is there no evidence that Loughner was impelled to violence by any of those upon whom Paul Krugman, Keith Olbermann, the New York Times, the Tucson sheriff and other rabid partisans are fixated. There is no evidence that he was responding to anything, political or otherwise, outside of his own head.”
Charles Krauthammer, Massacre, followed by libel

“At this point, there is simply no sound reason to believe this deranged young man was fired up by ‘toxic’ or ‘eliminationist’ conservative rhetoric from Michele Bachmann or whomever. Why are we even having this conversation? It’s nuts. It’s offensive. Is there any, you know, evidence that political rhetoric is now more vitriolic or incendiary than usual? Maybe there is, but I know of none. A feeling in Mr Krugman’s gut doesn’t cut it. Doesn’t it seem at least as likely that a 22-year-old would be inspired to an act of high-profile atrocity by violent video games or films? As far as I know there’s no evidence of that, either.”
W. W., Krugman’s toxic rhetoric

“No, Krugman is both stupid and evil. That a complete tool like Krugman could dare to formulate something like his ‘new rule’ (reference number three above) after insinuating that anyone who doesn’t believe in socialism and massive Keynesian money printing is a Nazi takes hubris to a whole new level. When will the NY Times stop publishing this loose cannon?”
Dennis Mangan, More Hate

“In the matter of self-serving, bitter, calculated cynicism, there wouldn’t seem to be much left to prove against the Times. Judging by what I’ve heard from my fellow conservatives, the issue is decided. The New York Times is a worthless, truthless, vicious institution. But I disagree. I think things are worse than that.”
P. J. O’Rourke, The Times Loses It – Sense and nonsense about Tucson.

“In other words, the media’s need to ‘get the witch’ was so strong, that it overpowered even their need to report the basic facts of the case. Everyone was talking about Sarah Palin’s ‘target’ map, but no one even knew the victims’ names. (And to make matters worse, Sarah Palin is now getting death threats.) Seriously, shame on you guys in the press. If you all want your ‘new tone’, then you need to man up, suck it up and apologize first–otherwise, all of your pleas to ‘end the divisive rhetoric’ will sound insincere. Like Mr. Blow said, you can’t claim the moral ground while standing in quick sand. Your ‘by any means necessary’ approach has failed.”
Susannah Fleetwood, 4 Reasons Why the MSM Botched the Tucson Massacre, and Why they Owe the Victims and Sarah Palin an Apology

“And don’t forget Omar ‘I killed the racists’ Thornton, who clearly believed that workplace discipline was a manifestation of the racism that the liberals and the MSM accuse whites of constantly, and thought that whites deserved to die for it. (HT: The Cold Equations on that one.)The writer of the linked article excuses feelings of sympathy for the murderers Thornton and Ferguson on the grounds that every black knows what it’s like to experience racism, therefore in some sense the murders were justified.”
Dennis Mangan, The Progressive Climate of Hate

“What this moment does teach is that the media scolds have a clear agenda, and that agenda puts a big target on conservative backs — analogy intended — and in pursuit of that agenda, the media will consistently miss opportunities to wisely keep quiet.”
Ed Morrissey, The media misses a good opportunity to keep quiet

“Decent people simply do not ascribe motivation to a psychopath like Loughner unless that motivation is proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
“I can’t tell you how angry this makes me. Far-left loons have attacked me in vile ways for years. I have to have security around the clock. Has The New York Times ever said a word about that?
“Some of my colleagues here at Fox News and on talk radio are faced with the exact same situation.
“There comes a point in a free society when citizens have to acknowledge the truth or see their country dissipate.
“The New York Times, MSNBC, Paul Krugman and others are furious that their far-left vision is falling apart, so they are using a terrible tragedy, using it to attack their perceived political enemies. That’s what this is all about: the failure of the far-left agenda. Because the loons are furious, they are now accusing people of being accessories to murder. How despicable is that?”
Bill O’Reilly, The O’Reilly Factor

 

What we learned about the governmental wing of the Liberal Establishment

“This afternoon [Democratic Vermont Senator Bernie] Sanders sent out a fundraising appeal, seeking to raise money to fight Republicans and other ‘right-wing reactionaries’ responsible for the climate that led to the shooting.”
Stephen F. Hayes, Sanders Fundraises Off Arizona Murders

“The repeal effort will presumably begin moving forward again next week, and the debate will no doubt be more restrained than might have been the case before Tucson. The Republicans will certainly be less aggressive in their rhetoric. The Democrats will, in turn, see this as weakness and attempt to exploit the gesture, just as they have exploited Tucson. They will brand as ‘vitriolic’ every floor speech in favor of repeal and repeatedly demand that the GOP water down its agenda.”
David Catron, Some Vitriolic Rhetoric About Repeal

“Much of the broadcast and print coverage over the weekend was devoted to decrying the state of political discourse, despite its tenuous connection to the shootings. Politico immediately ran several stories putting the shooter and his rampage in a political context, including one quoting a Democratic strategist — anonymously — arguing that this was a golden opportunity to ‘pin this on the tea partiers.’ This, just 24 hours after Giffords was gravely wounded. Where’s the outrage?”
Josh Kraushaar, Stop the Blame Game

“Obama thus cut the ground out from under those exploiting the massacre and attempted murder of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords to smear and exact retribution for the crushing repudiation they suffered on Nov. 2.”
Patrick J. Buchanan, Is Obama Leaving the Left Behind?

“Unfortunately, this is not the first time we have seen this type of reaction. The meme that opponents of Obama are crazy and dangerous has been an explicit Democratic Party campaign strategy for over two years. Here is just a partial list of events in which the left-wing and Democratic Party media operation has immediately blamed right-wing rhetoric, only to be proven wrong when the facts finally came out: Bill Sparkman, Amy Bishop, The Fort Hood Shooter, The IRS Plane Crasher, The Cabbie Stabbing, and The Pentagon Shooter.
“The facts will come out about the shooting and murder by Loughner. Until then, we’ll be subjected to the sickness of people who seek to use the crime to their political advantage and who will worry about the facts later on, if ever.”
“Legal Insurrection”, Two Sicknesses On Display in Arizona

“Home-grown, maybe a mentally deranged person or somebody with a political agenda that doesn’t like the health care bill or something. It could be anything.”
NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, speculating—without any evidence whatsoever—that the attempted bombing of Times Square in May of 2010 was the work of some average Joe American citizen (aka, a Tea Partier), the likes of whom were seen protesting—en masse, in town halls meetings throughout the country—the Democrats’ against-the-will-of-the-people/by-any-means-necessary effort to pass Obamacare. Of course, the would-be bomber turned out to be a Muslim looking to kill as many innocent civilians as possible, all in the service of Allah. After the facts were in, Bloomberg offered no apology for his completely unwarranted and irresponsible maligning of Obamacare opponents—but he did go on to council the perpetually-non-violent-yet-perpetually-smeared-as-violent “everyday Americans” to not stereotype or target Muslims—despite the fact, of course, that Muslims seem to perpetually target said “everyday Americans”.

“When our politicians and media loudmouths act like fools and zealots, they should be held responsible for being fools and zealots. They shouldn’t be held responsible for the darkness that always waits to swallow up the unstable and the lost.”
Ross Douthat, United in Horror

What we learned about the law-enforcement wing of the Liberal Establishment

“The judge sees Dupnik, the man Politico identifies as ‘the liberal sheriff,’ disgracefully using his time in the tragedy’s spotlight not to do his job but gain publicity by helping the liberal media exploit the killings by a ‘nut’ to exploit a liberal political agenda — gliding over the hard news fact that the only constitutional officer to die in the attack was a conservative Republican.
Jeffrey Lord, Federal Judge: Liberal Sheriff, Media Exploiting Attack

“Unsubstantiated accusations from an authority figure do not ‘validate’ the irresponsible claims of conservative culpability; they merely echo them. Unless he has seen evidence he is not sharing with the public, Dupnik was little more than Markos Moulitsas with a badge.”
Stephen F. Hayes, Sometimes A Tragedy Is Just A Tragedy

“Because in point of actual fact the truth is the OPPOSITE of what Dupnik asserts, and startlingly so. Think about it. Limbaugh has been on the air for twenty-two years. He has been espousing a point of view with passion and emphasis to millions of people five days a week. He has been frank in exposing the shortcomings of the opposing view. Yet not one single act of violence during that time has ever been attributed to a person identified as one of his regular listeners. NOT ONE SINGLE ACT!”
Jay D. Homnick, Quite the Opposite

“At this point, we just don’t know whether Sheriff Dupnik missed (or deliberately passed up) an opportunity to prosecute Jared Lee Loughner for criminal threats, possibly preventing a tragedy.
“And we just don’t know whether that is the reason that Dupnik has been thrilling cynical lefties with his brazen partisan politicization of the Giffords shooting.
“But regardless of whether the evidence is there, recent events certainly raise the issue of whether local law enforcement officials in this country spew partisan nonsense to divert people’s attention from their own failings.”
Patterico, While We’re Raising Questions — I Have a Few About Sheriff Dupnik

 

What we learned about the foot soldiers of the Liberal Establishment

“Is there anything quite so demented as a white liberal? The level of hate expressed for Sarah Palin seems to be not only a manifestation of self-hatred – but of the incredible smallness of their minds. They’re incapable of saying anything other than conservatives in general and Palin in particular should die.”
Dennis Mangan, More Hate

“The novelist Ayelet Waldman asked me on Twitter to inform her of the occasions on which I had denounced violent rhetoric only an hour after she had demanded of the House speaker, ‘Crying yet, you sc–bag?’ and referred to the ‘evil political hackery of the RNC.’ She is, she wrote, ‘a Jew with a sense of history,’ though evidently that sense of history lasts approximately the time it takes to write a tweet.
Markos Moulitsas of the Daily Kos, the most important figure in the leftist blogosphere, made himself notorious in 2004 for greeting the murder of four private contractors by Iraqi insurgents in Fallujah with the words ‘screw them.’ He greeted the news of Saturday’s massacre with the words ‘F—ing American Taliban,’ echoing the title of his own recent book.”
John Podhoretz, The rush to blame

“Liberals who have crusaded to keep madmen running loose in America have also campaigned to abolish the death penalty, so that innocent victims can be killed, but their killers can’t. Liberals have also advanced an absolutist theory of First Amendment rights that protects pornographers, Marxist revolutionaries, and Islamic clerics who advocate jihad. The only speech that liberals ever want to restrict is the speech of those who point out the errors of liberalism. Any conservative would be denounced for ‘hate speech’ if he borrowed the words of President Obama’s former pastor and declared that what happened in Tucson on Saturday was liberalism’s “chickens coming home to roost.” But liberals can’t gain any political advantage by blaming Jared Loughner and they never accept any responsibility themselves, so liberalism’s eternal hunt for scapegoats will continue.”
Robert Stacy McCain, The Victim and His Victims

“Thus, in practice, the proposed suppression of free speech is not about tone, but viewpoint. It is nothing less than a naked power play by those in the business of manufacturing consent to a center-left agenda, using the shop-worn gimmicks of “Fake, But Accurate” and the “Neutral Story Line.” If that means dressing up ghouls in nice clothes and exploiting the murder of a nine-year-old girl… well, that’s just the cost of doing business.”
Karl, Don’t think of an elephant: Giffords, ghouls and gimmicks

“Supposedly respectable political groups followed suit: ‘It is fair to say — in today’s political climate, and given today’s political rhetoric — that many have contributed to the building levels of vitriol in our political discourse that have surely contributed to the atmosphere in which this event transpired,’ said a statement issued by the leaders of the National Jewish Democratic Council. Fair? How so, and on what evidence is this string of flimsy assumptions based? Shame on them.”
Jennifer Rubin, The Arizona Tragedy

“…I can’t get over the contrast between the left straining to politicize him and the parade of friends insisting that they simply never knew Loughner to be political (apart from his Trutherism and unspecified ‘frustration’ with Bush).”
“AllahPundit”, WaPo: Loughner was a registered independent, didn’t vote this year

“The Left’s online accusation orgy initially drained time and attention from the courage, character, and grace of those affected by or involved in the tragedy. But the genuine response to crisis exposed the shallowness of the Left’s reaction and more.”
Robert M. Goldberg, Tucson and the Left’s Online Orgy of Accusation

“The grief and empathy barely had time to inspire cogent response before being replaced by rage against the paranoid leftist attacks on Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh and, by extension, all conservatives. Normal human feelings, the sorts of admirable feelings that drew Americans together after 9/11 and that drew volunteers from around the country to help the victims of Hurricane Katrina, were defecated upon by the sowers of discord who would portray political opponents as accessories to mass murder. The desperate urge is to strike back at these calumnious and viciously mendacious attacks, to escalate the conflict in a way that will make the leftist thugs crawl under the nastiest, most vermin-infested rock imaginable. But rather than escalate the language, the imperative is to elevate it. Can we give any voice to the angel who sits on the shoulder that is, quite naturally, on the right?”
Quin Hillyer, Let’s Try a Better Response

 

Looking Forward…

“And as long as liberals want to believe that Sarah Palin bears responsibility for the murder of six people and for the attempted murder of Congresswoman Giffords, then there is no hope for elevation of our public discourse.”
Aaron Goldstein, The Dismissal of Sarah Palin

“Question: In the spirit of unity and thriving, will all the prog cities and counties that declared economic war on Arizona over SB1070 repeal their boycotts now?”
Michelle Malkin, Branding the Tucson massacre: “Together We Thrive” in white and blue

“Do you truly desire a more civil tone to our energetic discourse? If so, you must honestly confront what you’ve seen this week: a carefully designed and packaged narrative, whose goal was to silence conservatives by smearing them as accomplices to murder. The people responsible for producing and sustaining that narrative are hatemongers – there is no more appropriate word – and they are liberals. They had a hundred chances to back off, and they did not. They deliberate injected one of the most divisive toxins ever formulated into our national bloodstream.”
John Hayward, The Great Disqualification – A week of media malpractice comes to an unhappy end.

“Let us hope that Dean is the last gasp of the generation of liberals whose default position in any argument is to indict opponents as racists. This McCarthyism of the left – devoid of intellectual content, unsupported by data – is a mental tic, not an idea but a tactic for avoiding engagement with ideas. It expresses limitless contempt for the American people, who have reciprocated by reducing liberalism to its current characteristics of electoral weakness and bad sociology.”
George Will, The charlatans’ response to the Tucson tragedy

“They will not be running in 2012 against a cookie-cutter liberal. For while Sen. Obama may have compiled a voting record to the left of Socialist Bernie Sanders’, this, recall, is a fellow who voted ‘present’ over 100 times on controversial issues in the Illinois Senate.
This is no true believer. This is a survivor. This is a fellow with an almost Nixonian capacity for maneuver.”
Patrick J. Buchanan, Is Obama Leaving the Left Behind?

“Our country would be better served if, instead of accusing each other of moral culpability for these crimes, politicians and media joined to demand that Loughner be denied the fame (or infamy) he sought, and that he receive the same swift justice as Giuseppe Zangara.”
Patrick J. Buchanan, Poisonous Politics

“This line of argument is itself an attack on democratic discourse, and it is amazing that it even needs to be rebutted. Taking such an argument seriously will only encourage more crazy people to believe they can trigger a national soul-searching if they shoot at a political target. We should denounce the murders and the murderer, rather than doing him the honor of suggesting that his violence flows in any explainable fashion from democratic debate.”
Wall Street Journal Editorial, Murder in Tucson – Jared Loughner’s sickness is not the product of politics.

 

She came into the world on 9/11 and then at nine years old she leaves it all on this terrible day.
But we wouldn’t take it back – any of the nine years we had with her.
It was all worth it.
…[W]e still believe in this country.
John Green, father of nine-year-old Christina-Taylor who was born on September 11th, 2001, and was murdered on January 8th, 2011.

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Written by Ex Machina

January 18, 2011 at 12:58 pm

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