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PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2011 12:49 am 
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With the simultaneous bombings and mass shootings in Oslo, the following thoughts come to mind.

  • Just because something is conventional wisdom doesn't mean it will be that in the future. The 9/11 bombers counted on the conventional wisdom that the best strategy in hijackings was delay, delay, delay. The sociopaths who orchestrated and executed 9/11 knew that, and it gave them the opportunity to kill with unprecedented breadth and efficiency.
    ...
  • While most extremists who kill innocents in large numbers are Islamic radicals, not all are. Timothy McVey comes to mind. I can't tell you how badly I wanted to reach in the TV and slap Katie Couric for constantly asking people if they thought the Oklahoma City bombing was due to Islamists. Similarly the fact that some feared the rise of al qaeda and radical Islam in Norway was a reason for people at the youth camp to flee towards this blue-eyed blonde with a police uniform when they heard shots. They were lambs heading to the slaughter.
    ...
  • Just because you are armed in such a scenario doesn't mean you'll have it in you to be a hero and take out one of these sociopaths. Don't understand why? Start reading Grossman. Then come to camp and talk to Rory Miller and/or read some of his books.

There will be other thoughts, but these are a few to ponder in the short-term.

Bill


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2011 9:56 am 
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Bill Glasheen wrote:
  • ...people at the youth camp to flee towards this blue-eyed blonde with a police uniform when they heard shots. They were lambs heading to the slaughter.
  • Just because you are armed in such a scenario doesn't mean you'll have it in you to be a hero and take out one of these sociopaths. Don't understand why?


Nearly all people seeing a police uniform will not fire on that "officer", even if they see that "officer" murdering innocent people.

In the USA it has become "law" in many (if not most) jurisdictions that it is "illegal" to resist any uniformed "authority" figure, even if that "officer" is committing an illegal act. That contradicts well over 200 years of law in the USA (and every bit of common sense that one can muster).

In the past it had been held that one is justified in resisting any unlawful act of a uniformed "official" using whatever force is necessary (upto and including killing the one committing the unlawful/illegal action). That has changed for people in the USA in both attitude and "by law".

IMNSHO, it opens the door to this type of terror attack being successfully carried out here.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2011 4:01 pm 
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Panther wrote:
IMNSHO, it opens the door to this type of terror attack being successfully carried out here.


I think that legal issue makes a bad situation worse rather than "opening the door". In fact, I'm having a hard time thinking of an effective way to shut it.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 12:26 am 
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I can't help but see two different views of society with these posts.

From Panther we see the classic ideals of Jeffersonian libertarianism. Jefferson lived at a time when British troops would occupy an area and feed off of the settlers like noxious parasites. It was the way of roving armies of the past, but it's not a way to endear yourself to The People. From TJ...

The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.

And then you have other extremes in our history, such as Lincoln suspending habeas corpus in 1861. He rationalized that it was necessary to violate The Constitution in order to save it. Hmm... I wonder how well that would go over today?

I always had a bit of Jefferson in me, going way back to the days of a budding scientist in a parochial school system. And then there were my "hippie" days where the length of your hair allegedly was a political statement. I learned very early on not to trust authority.

These days it has evolved to a healthy respect. It gets down to understanding the principles upon which our society was founded. If those principles are violated, well... I may not make my stand at the moment. But the little voice in my head tells me not to throw away the brain I was given when listening to authority. In practice it's easier said than done. But this is the mindset that DeBecker preaches us to develop. When you think about it, this is no different than what we try to teach our children in order to help them resist molestation.

What's a good example of the principle in practice? Here's a good one. If you're out in the middle of nowhere and you see a car behind you with flashing lights, it's perfectly reasonable to drive to a well-lit area before you stop. And nobody's stopping you from calling 911 before you stop to double-check whether or not the car behind you is legit. You can acknowledge the officer by turning the lights on in your cabin and/or turning your emergency flashers on. But a good policeman isn't going to give you a hard time about pulling over where it is safe and there are many witnesses.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:17 am 
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I get where Panther is coming from, and I wouldn't have it any different than he, or you. My point is that while you can cut a massacre short, it's probably still going to be a massacre before you can stop it, if you can stop it. That uniform is going to buy the perp time, time to kill. I just think there would be no exemption from confusion in a moment when a presumptive policeman opens fire. You will have to ascertain what is happening, and that may be no easy task if your vantage point isn't good and he is not currently shooting in your direction. If a large number of people are armed then hopefully somebody who is armed will have an early realization that this "policeman" is murdering people, but then they will still have to act. Suppose this actually happens. Now will you realize that the bad guy is the policemen and not the civilian shooting at him?

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 10:33 am 
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Thanks Bill-Sensei. Good question Mike... and I don't really have a good answer for you/it. Thinking of those children viciously gunned down by an animal has put me into the same emotional roller-coaster as happened when the Chechen "Rebels" gunned down those innocent school children who were running to the safety of their parents.

It sends me through a turmoil of despair/crying/sadness/frustration/anger that would be overwhelmning if I hadn't been through it before and learned to cope. :cry: :evilbat:

I wrote a very long response with examples, but decided that I should just drop it... suffice it to say that I have a necessary "healthy respect" too...


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 6:00 pm 
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I hear you.

It's outrageous that this guy is not even facing very much jail time in Norway. Shame on me, I guess, but I was honestly hoping for something cruel and unusual.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 7:23 pm 
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The media gave him his score and his fame. Ideally the headlines (not front page) should have been. "A loser killed in a cowardly manner and was easily apprehended."
A tally is not really required, one is more than enough. Even a fool knows he will be known around the world if he kills a lot of innocent people. My goal is to turn my back on such stunts from here on in...not worth even a few of the numbered breaths I have in my lifetime. Would there be fewer acts of such violence if they knew their names would be forgotten?

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2011 12:45 am 
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I read that some of the teenagers actually did escape the slaughter. Some found places to hide, including one girl who hid under the rock that the assassin was standing on. Others chose to jump in the water and swim as far as possible. They survived. Some faced the attacker and pleaded for mercy; they were executed.

With a firearm, distance is your friend. The ability to be hit goes down dramatically with distance.

There's an old saying which holds true in such a scenario. As the saying goes... In a crowd of people you don't need to be faster than a hungry tiger. You just need to be faster than the guy beside you. There's no "hero" in this scenario, survival of SOMEONE is key.

There is much survival guilt in these scenarios. The survivors need to be told that the guilt is natural, as is the selfish feeling of being happy they weren't the ones who were killed. Short of stepping on a mother with child to escape, living is nothing to be ashamed of. As difficult as it is actually to do this... there is no point allowing this scum also to take from the lives of the survivors.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2011 3:12 pm 
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Wikipedia wrote:
Heuristic (Greek: "Εὑρίσκω", "find" or "discover") refers to experience-based techniques for problem solving, learning, and discovery. Heuristic methods are used to speed up the process of finding a satisfactory solution, where an exhaustive search is impractical. Examples of this method include using a "rule of thumb", an educated guess, an intuitive judgment, or common sense.

In more precise terms, heuristics are strategies using readily accessible, though loosely applicable, information to control problem solving in human beings and machines.

Is this patient likely to end up admitted (and therefore a candidate for intensive care management) or not? It is a question asked and dealt with in my line of work. I've written models to predict this in a previous job, and my peers who work around the corner from me at work today have written their own. The model is run every day with near-real-time data, and case managers get files delivered to them - complete with phone contact information - which prompt them to call Mrs. Jones and ask her how we can help her. It's pretty cool stuff.

In our line of work we are brutally objective about our decisions. We test our models (artificial intelligence decision making) with real data and create a Truth matrix like the one below.

Image

The models we build essentially predict a probability that a certain thing will happen or will be true. At some point you need to fish or cut bait. Where is the cut-off point beyond which you assume it's worth managing a patient? That is determined by the penalties associated with a Type I vs. a Type II error. If we decide to intervene when they wouldn't have been a case, it costs the company the price of the case management. That's not trivial. If we decide not to intervene and we end up with the patient in the hospital, it costs us at the least the price of the inpatient admission. At the very worst, some of these people may die.

THE MODEL WILL NEVER BE PERFECT. That you need to establish from the beginning. You go forward with as good a model as you can (a very narrow gray area) and adjust your intervene or not based on your tolerance for the various errors.

Heuristics are applied by the soldier, the LEO, and the self-defense practitioner. I am in front of my apartment and someone puts a gun to me. They tell me they want me to go to location B.

Should I stay or should I go now?
If I go there will be trouble
An’ if I stay it will be double
So come on and let me know!


Heuristics are there to guide us at these critical moments where a quick decision must be made and our brains may be neurohormonally jacked. Heuristics tell us to stay and to make our stand NOW, because "the second crime scene" generally does not give us a good outcome.

  • Sometimes we stay and make a stand when a better outcome would be had if we went.
    ....
  • Sometimes we go where the perp wanted us to, when the "rule of thumb" decision to stay would have given us a better outcome.

Heuristics help us with the odds when there is a need to make a quick decision. As with the artificial intelligence situation studied ad nauseum in the lab, we proceed knowing that there's a chance we may make the wrong decision.

As such... the "rules of thumb" - hopefully informed choices - are guideposts. But they are not hitching posts. If you have better information... If that little man in your lower brain which DeBecker talks about is whispering to you... If you suddenly feel confident enough to proceed with a "Plan C", well... Even in our purely analytical world we may put a second model at the end of a first model. Or we tell the nurse managers that the information we give them is there to help them on their jobs, but not to do their jobs for them.

Just be careful not to go into deer-in-the-headlamps mode. Kata which teach us always to breathe - even when we're not moving - help us here. Kata and kumite which teach us how to move constantly and fluidly (note the water analogy) help us here.

Experience helps us as well. There are heuristics, and then there are Heuristics.

One final point worth making... If we make an informed choice in a self-defense situation and the situation turned out badly, it's important not to beat yourself up about it later on. Even if you make a "bad" decision and it turns out badly, there is no point giving the perp a second more of your mental and psychological energy. You "dust yourself off" as best as is humanly possible, and you move on. If you need help with the moving on process, get help. But whatever you do... be decisive, accept the consequences, and then fight the "moving on" battle just as vigorously as you fought the enemy at the point of confrontation.

Easier said than done, I know... In our medical work we have the advantages of large numbers. We know mistakes will be made, but we know we can constantly tweak things to make those mistakes fewer and fewer. We can feel good about the net. A single person's life doesn't quite operate that way. It's one person and there are no do-overs. A mistake can mean anything from psychological trauma to physical disability to death. But if we are alive... we owe it to ourselves to move on.

- Bill


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