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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:12 am 
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Wall Street Journal wrote:

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, an Arizona Democrat, along with a federal judge and 16 others were shot outside a Safeway in Tucson in a shooting spree that left six dead, local law enforcement officials said.

Local hospital officials said that Ms. Giffords, 40, had survived a gunshot wound to the head after emergency surgery and was likely to recover. The shooting occurred Saturday morning during a "Congress on Your Corner" event that the lawmaker was holding in her district.

Two law-enforcement officials confirmed that Tucson's chief federal judge, John Roll, was also shot at the scene and killed. Judge Roll had ruled on a number of heated immigration cases in the southern part of Arizona, which includes Ms. Giffords's district.
Washington Wire

A spokesman at the University Medical Center in Tucson, Dr. Peter Rhee, said Ms. Giffords had completed surgery and she was being transferred to intensive care. "I am very optimistic about her recovery," he said, adding that the bullet had gone straight through her head.

Dr. Rhee said that 10 patients were being treated at the hospital, and that five of them were in critical condition. In addition, he said, a child who was brought to the hospital had died of gunshot wounds.

President Obama held a press conference to address the shooting in Tucson, Arizona that wounded Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and killed Judge John Roll along with several bystanders.

Police said they were holding the suspected gunman, who they described as a white male, born in 1988. A police report identified the man as Jared Lee Loughner.

The U.S. Army said in a statement that Mr. Loughner had tried to join the Army but was turned away. "The Army has confirmed that the suspect was never in the Army," the spokesman said. "He attempted to enlist in the Army but was rejected for service. In accordance with the Privacy Act, we will not discuss why he was rejected."

{snip}

I have several comments for now.
  • There is no room for violence in U.S. politics.
  • I can understand emotional statements coming from the family of Rep. Giffords. They are in pain, and my heart goes out to them.
  • Shame on those who attempt to make political hay from the acts of a coward. As with most cases like this, the perp is a very disturbed individual.

Yes, I believe in the expression "Never waste a crisis." And in the spirit of that idea, I say...

God be with you, Rep Giffords.

May you rest in peace, Judge Roll.

And may the lives of all those affected bask in the support of those around them.

- Bill


Last edited by Bill Glasheen on Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:44 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:29 am 
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Once again an assassin is identified by his full given name.

My sympathies lie with the fallen and their families. Everybody bleeds the same stuff, whether an R or a D sit after their names.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:31 am 
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I don't think it's too early to point out that those who are involved in contentious political discussions should always have a healthy respect for the workings of their lower brains. Much will be said about avoiding the acts of crazies.

I was in graduate school when President Reagan was shot. Having voted for Carter, I didn't have a lot of emotional feelings about the man. But I do remember the words of a Reagan-loving physician I was doing research with. "Moral of the story? Don't be famous!"

And if you are, you can potentially be like flypaper to the unbalanced. Fame and power aren't all they're cracked up to be. Those who become public figures need to have a paradigm shift about their personal safety.

Yes, be afraid. There's no shame in fear; it's there for a reason. If you say you're fearless under the circumstances, you're either a liar or a fool. Character is about what we do in the face of fear.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 4:19 am 
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Quote:
And if you are, you can potentially be like flypaper to the unbalanced. Fame and power aren't all they're cracked up to be. Those who become public figures need to have a paradigm shift about their personal safety.


True enough...like the 'fastest gun' in the West.

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 Post subject: The fog of war
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 2:35 pm 
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Years back there was a bombing in Oklahoma City which took out the side of a very large building and killed many. Immediately after the bombing, I was watching television and listening to the news people trying to make sense of it all. There was Katie Couric on television asking authority after authority if this was the act of a Muslim extremist. I remember my visceral response. I wanted to reach through the television screen and bitchslap the silly reporter. But there she kept going, perpetuating this unsubstantiated idea.

In the initial fog of this incident, someone asked Rep Giffords' father if she had any enemies. The unfortunate response? "Yea, the entire Tea Party." And then a story started floating how he was an Afghan war veteran trained in military tactics.

The truth?
  • He is described as a "loner."
  • A few years back, he was rejected from entry into the Army. Mind you that this was a reasonably healthy-looking white male. Not even good enough to do kitchen duty? You do the math.
  • He was recently booted from community college and told he couldn't re-enter without a psychological evaluation.
  • He was at times a heavy pot smoker.
  • In his ramblings on My Space, he talked about knowing that the government and other authorities were monitoring him.
  • He'd previously stated that one of his favorite books was Mein Kampf. You known... the book by the genocidal leader of a German socialist movement.

So much for the Tea Party moniker.

And yet... I'm watching ABC This Week right now. And they keep quoting person after person perpetuating the inaccurate paradigm.

"The anger, the hatred, the bigotry is getting out of control!!"

Yes.. And I drive a Mercury Villager van. So what does that have to do with the facts?

Always, always be careful about "information" during "the fog of war."

- Bill


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 2:48 pm 
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Says George Will (just now in real time), "The fact is there are 308 million people in this country, and a few of them are unhinged."

Thank you, George. I couldn't have said it better myself.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 3:27 pm 
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I dropped in to post about something else but this guy sounds more like one of Alex Jones' listeners than a Tea Party member.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Classitup10 ... nNx0WThoF0

http://www.youtube.com/user/Classitup10 ... HoaZaLbqB4

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 4:26 pm 
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MikeK wrote:

I dropped in to post about something else but this guy sounds more like one of Alex Jones' listeners than a Tea Party member.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Classitup10 ... nNx0WThoF0

http://www.youtube.com/user/Classitup10 ... HoaZaLbqB4

Thanks, Mike!

Oy!

From Mike's quoted sources...
Jared Lee Loughner wrote:

I had favorite books: Animal Farm, Brave New World, The Wizard Of OZ, Aesop Fables, The Odyssey, Alice Adventures Into Wonderland, Fahrenheit 451, Peter Pan, To Kill A Mockingbird, We The Living, Phantom Toll Booth, One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, Pulp,Through The Looking Glass, The Communist Manifesto, Siddhartha, The Old Man And The Sea, Gulliver's Travels, Mein Kampf, The Republic, and Meno.

So what themes do I see here?
  • Novels about Herculean struggles - external and internal: The Wizard of Oz, The Odyssey, Siddhartha, The Old Man and the Sea, Gulliver's Travels
  • Political manifestos of the extreme: Mein Kampf, The Communist Manifesto
  • Persecution and anarchy: To Kill a Mockingbird, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Farenheit 451
  • A fascination with altered states: Phantom Toll Booth, Alice Adventures Into Wonderland, Through the Looking Glass

Do we read the tea leaves and come up with an "Aha!"? Or... Do we just see another Charles Manson overinterpreting Helter Skelter? I'm going with the latter, based on his totally incomprehensible YouTube posts.

Quick, get your tin foil hats! :silly:

As with the Virginia Tech shooter, I'm just sad that someone didn't get this person some help much sooner. And for the record... I have personal experience with this. I've gotten two (2) people detained in my lifetime based upon my suspicion that they were in danger of hurting themselves and/or others. One is now a street person. The other is a parent, and grateful I intervened. Anyhow... at least the leaders in the Arizona community college protected themselves. Too bad nobody followed up on this.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 4:50 pm 
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This is one of many slides in Jared's ramblings.
Jared Lee Loughner wrote:

Sleepwalking

If I define sleepwalking then sleepwalking is the act or state of walking, eating, or performing other motor acts while asleep, of which one is unaware upon awakening.

I define sleepwalking.

Thus, sleepwalking is the act or state of walking, eating, or performing other motor acts while asleep, of which one is unaware upon awakening.

I'm a sleepwalker - who turns off the alarm clock.

Wow... This is almost like getting into a logical discussion with a chi-ster! :P

I am not a psychologist, and I don't play one on television. That said, this is a classically psychotic and/or schizophrenic personality. He's even aware of his non-consensus state of awareness - if that makes sense.
Jared Lee Loughner wrote:

reading the second United States Constitution, I can't trust the current government because of the ratifications: The government is implying mind control and brainwash on the people by controlling grammar.

I'm a little peeved that nobody got this young man the help he needed. Obviously his teachers should have had more than "grammar" issues with his writing. Maybe booting him from the school was safe - for them. But that didn't make the problem go away.

Sorry for my own ranting. Some days I get a little ticked because most people just don't make the time to see things through.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:06 pm 
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Quote:
The suspect still had ammunition in his weapon when he was tackled, Dupnik said. Law enforcement officials had previous contact with the suspect and he had made threats, the sheriff said.
from NPR Article

Will a long time LEO be looking for a new job?

Did someone along the way fail this kid, and fail a larger group of people too? Or is this just a case of stuff happens?

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:59 pm 
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I took the liberty of editing your last post to make it work, Mike.
MikeK wrote:

Did someone along the way fail this kid, and fail a larger group of people too? Or is this just a case of stuff happens?

I had to think about what you just posted.

Did you mean failed as in they failed him in English because his writing is incoherent? (Hence the government control of his grammar thing...) Or did you mean failed him as in not helping someone who obviously needed SERIOUS mental health evaluation and treatment? I'm thinking you meant the latter.

The second question is on the mark, Mike. Stuff happens. And famous people need to realize that they attract some of this crazy "stuff."

So my answer is... probably a little of both.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 7:05 pm 
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Van Canna wrote:

Bill Glasheen wrote:

And if you are, you can potentially be like flypaper to the unbalanced. Fame and power aren't all they're cracked up to be. Those who become public figures need to have a paradigm shift about their personal safety.


True enough...like the 'fastest gun' in the West.

My Sicilian friend knows his U.S. history better than most kids today. Go figure.

I happen to be aware of many of the original stories because my great grandfather (Bill McCarthy) fought for The Union Army (as a starving 14-year-old immigrant from Ireland) and then subsequently got shipped out to the western frontier. He used to tell stories to the family that nobody believed... until they appeared as plots on Death Valley Days

From Wiki...
Wikipedia wrote:

Death

Wild Bill had a premonition that Deadwood would be his last camp and expressed this belief to his friend Charlie Utter (also known as Colorado Charlie), and the others who were traveling with them at the time.[38] On August 2, 1876, Hickok was playing poker at Nuttal & Mann's Saloon No. 10 in Deadwood, in the Black Hills, Dakota Territory. Unusually, he was sitting with his back to a door. Twice he asked Rich to change seats with him, and on both occasions Rich refused.

An ex-buffalo hunter named John McCall (better known as "Jack" or “Broken Nose Jack” McCall) walked in unnoticed. Jack McCall walked to within a few feet of Wild Bill and then suddenly drew a pistol and shouted, “Take that!” before firing.

The bullet hit Hickok in the back of the head, killing him instantly. The bullet emerged through Wild Bill’s right cheek striking Captain Massie in the left wrist. Legend has it that Hickok had lost his stake and had just borrowed $50 from the house to continue playing. When shot, he was holding a pair of aces and a pair of eights, all black. The fifth card is debated, or, as some say, had been discarded and its replacement had not yet been dealt.[39]

My wife ridicules me for never wanting to sit at a table with my back to the room. What-ever... I don't do it because of some crazy obsession with martial history. It is now an instinct because of years doing many-on-one randori with a previous martial arts instructor (who was in the military). Like a rat trained by Pavlov or B. F. Skinner, I ... just ... can't ... do ... it.

Those IMO are good instincts.
Reporter Leander Richardson wrote:

As I write the closing lines of this brief sketch, word reaches me that the slayer of Wild Bill has been re-arrested by the United State authorities, and after trial has been sentenced to death for willful murder. He is now at Yankton, D.T. awaiting execution. At the trial it was proved that the murderer was hired to do his work by gamblers[45] who feared the time when better citizens should appoint Bill the champion of law and order - a post which he formerly sustained in Kansas border life, with credit to his manhood and his courage.


- Bill


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 7:08 pm 
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Failed in getting him mental help or keeping him on a watch list. The guy is pretty whacky.

The second rhetorical question stems from my liberal friends who are trying to place blame on Palin. It's as if they can't accept that sometimes a lone nut job can cause great damage. They need someone to blame in order to have their world view make sense again.

The good sheriff seems to be better at claiming his town as the "Mecca for prejudice and bigotry" than keeping a town meeting safe.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 7:18 pm 
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Word, Mike.

Never admit your perceived shortcomings. It's plausible deniability. And never waste a really good crisis - particularly if it will help undo a really good shellacking.

In my opinion it's sick - just like the thoughts and acts of the would-be assassin.

May the suffering get relief. And may the deceased rest in peace. That's all that needs to be said. It's all that can be said until the fog settles.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:20 pm 
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We have to be careful about recreating a Captain Hindsight episode on Southpark. It's very easy to take the weird dude's trail as conclusive after he kills someone. Unfortunately there are many, many such weird dudes, and violence prediction is an extremely inaccurate "science" with a past history your best predictor (so it's too late), and people's rights are protected. You can't just lock someone up because they are threatening in some ways.

A psych hold requires that you be a risk to self, others, or unable to care for yourself.

Chronically hallucinating, feeling persecuted, fearing the government takeover, using PCP, training for armageddon = release to street. Threats to others have to be fairly imminent and specific. If we had locked up everyone who'd ever made threats, perhaps this wouldn't have happened, but many many many people's freedom would be curtailed usually for no reason, and we'd have a completely unmanageable jail population.

Incidentally, after the psycho rights movements a few decades ago, lots of long term confined people were released, and there was a roughly 1:1 exchange. Fewer people in locked wards, more people in jail cells.

There may be something specific that mandated intervention I haven't heard about yet. Unfortunately this guy was probably just a nut, one of many, and probably didn't rise to the level of forced confinement or treatment.

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