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October 05, 2015

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I've got nothing, either.

I don't know if you can fix "crazy", or avoid the potentially horrible outcomes.

The gun/NRA thing is just partisan politics. There's probably today more guns in the USA then there are citizens.

You can't get that genie back in the bottle.

Millions of people "enjoy" violent music, video games, and movies without harming a fly. I don't think the media is a relevant factor.

No answers here-

I recognize U Inphx. You are that long armed primate that picked up the jaw bone of an ass and discovered you could kill your competing food scavangers. For clarity, Kubrick's 2001.

Cal:

Got the reference and saw the movie and that part in the beginning was about all I could understand. The monolith and the giant baby were over my head.

Love Dr. Strangelove, though. As a kid, i'd watch it with my dad and we'd both just howl at the scene where Dr. Strangelove's arm attacks him.

There no fighting in here- this is a war room!

Monolith and giant Baby: I suggest we ask Petro.

We dug ourselves this hole, just like so many others, by mainstreaming right-wing extremism. The 2nd Amendment, for example, clearly did not intend an absolute right to gun ownership since it helpfully suggests that "a well-regulated militia" is the condition of the right to bear arms. There's no suggestion that any paranoid crackpot shall have absolute freedom to buy, sell, and use any kind of weapon short of nuclear weapons. Warren Burger spoke eloquently of the Constitutional distortions used to midwife this bizarre fetish: http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/05/nra-guns-second-amendment-106856

We're so deep into this particular fever swamp that the nation is functionally insane now when it comes to guns. There is no other advanced nation on Earth that tolerates and, let's be honest, encourages this kind of behavior. Right-wingers are obsessed with guns primarily from racial animus (e.g., George Zimmerman, and his racist defenders in the GOP). Even though violent crime has steadily declined over the past 20 years, many Americans and most Republicans believe it's getting worse. Ask yourself: who profits from this paranoia? It's not jut the NRA, as despicable an organization as they are. It's also the Republican Party, for whom absolute gun rights are the virtual holy grail of their crazy policy agenda.

Republicans want everyone to be afraid, be armed, and believe the worst about people different from themselves. Donald Trump is not an accident. He's the toxic fruit of a vile strategy that has become a cancer in our political lives over the past 30 years.

A society that blithely accepts school kids being murdered by a crazed gunman will, instead, perpetually investigate Benghazi!!! where four Americans died. School kids? Who cares! We're no longer capable of being shocked, partly because we've numbed ourselves with politicized fear and loathing. We will actually entertain ideas like arming college kids as an antidote to mass murder, as if every young person with poor impulse management should be armed to prevent random violence.

Society's number one obligation is to its most vulnerable members. You protect them at any cost, even if that cost is exacted at the expense of an entirely ginned-up right to let sociopaths play with guns. It is unspeakably vile that 30,000+ Americans die every year from gun violence and all we want to do is expand gun rights. Why aren't most Americans screaming from the top of their lungs about this? If this were ISIS doing the killing, we'd be a police state. But when it's just ordinary Americans doing the killing, some even behaving like domestic terrorists, we just yawn, pleased that we have the freedom to kill each other because.......er........personal responsibility!

Jon who gets the credit for the art work at the top of the column?

Cal, it's Wikimedia Commons, a wall in Seattle.

"At this point, I don't have solutions. I don't even have intelligent responses that stand a chance of being enacted. I've got nothing."

You're wrong, Jon. You DO have something - your vote. If you exercise it as you exercise your conscience, it can and will make a difference. That difference may be small, and it certainly will not be enough, especially here in Arizona, but I assure you, it will be noticed.

Failing to confront a sick society is to surrender to it and participate in its evil. Gandhi and Dr. King understood speaking truth to power; of witnessing as we Quakers say. You have a vote. You have a conscience. Continue to use them.



@RC re: “The latest killer, as is almost always the case, was a white male.” I don’t know that this is necessary true. I don’t know for a fact that it’s false either. Some information that he was mixed race and raised by his black mother. I don’t care enough to look into it any farther. Sort of like the case Zimmerman being white, which he was; but in this case it doesn’t matter. Under different circumstances he would be described as “Hispanic”.

Think you nailed it with “The sick society is populated with aimless, infantalized young men.” (although I would have added women too).

Soleri:

Lots of urban blacks in the NRA?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonkblog/wp/2014/09/19/the-racial-divide-in-americas-gun-deaths/

Highest murder per capita- the NRA (and Republican)strongholds of Washington DC, Detroit, Richmond, Flint, and New Orleans

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/07/14/despite-recent-shootings-chicago-nowhere-near-u-s-murder-capital/


Total Chicago homicides- 2013-- 440 (and that's just ONE city)

Annual average "mass shootings" since 2013?

about 411

http://www.vox.com/a/mass-shootings-sandy-hook


Many overreact to these horrific events, ignoring the daily carnage that occurs in your beloved cities.

Think the Crips send a lot of dough to the NRA?

INPHX, you are admitting, however tangentially, that race is the primary preoccupation on your side of the divide. Thanks for this partial admission. Because this insanity is not only useful to Republicans, it's a functional requirement for their continued viability politically.

We are in this mess because of Republican extremism, cynicism, and utter apathy for the collateral damage that comes with racial polarization and paranoia.

But, go ahead and wring your hands, cry your crocodile tears, and mutter to yourself: "I've got nothing". It's too late. The genie is out of the bottle. Let's investigate e-mails instead.

Please. Just tell the truth. Republicans have been picking this scab for decades, hoping to frighten you and your tribe into a permanent frenzy about crime, Crips, Black Panthers, "rapists", "killers", and all the other predators than afflict the minds of fearful people watching Fox News or listening to Rush Limbaugh.

It's all about race. It always has been.

This is a sick society and guns is but a symptom. Already, in addition to the gun "debate", the tribes are already preening and posing about whether the killer is white or other, what his name really is (the hyphenation), where in the political spectrum he falls (he targeted Christians! but he self-identifies as a Kook!), and Clinton sees an opportunity to gain some votes from Sanders. The violence, intolerance, racism, and theft that this nation was founded upon has come home to roost in the most nasty, unmanageable and unsolvable way.

Soleri:

To suggest that published statistics have racial overtones is the action of a race baiting idiot.

If you can refute the data, I'm listening.

Otherwise, we get it.

The mass shootings are the fault of the GOP, the murder rates in the cities outlined are the fault of the GOP, the economic doldrums in the country (and the world) are the fault of the GOP), the GOP staged the fake moon landing, the GOP blew up the Titanic, the GOP got OJ off, just over and over and all the other tin foil hat crap that your side just makes up.

It is all about race. At least to you.

To me, it's about carnage.

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/oct/05/tennessee-boy-kills-girl-puppies-sheriff

'Merica!

Another child sacrifice to our Moloch (re: Gary Wills @ NYR Daily).

Violence is as American as cherry pie. H. Rap Brown.

Over 500 Americans killed in auto accidents since Oregon shootings!

INPHX, you offered some crime statistics that state something fairly very interesting. Blacks are worse than whites when it comes to gun violence. I'm wondering why you would want to make that point. To suggest we need more guns because one race is causing all the problems? Or that blacks are so predatory that if we're not all armed to the teeth they'll kill all the white people? Why not suggest we need common-sense gun laws to prevent all this violence instead?

Help me out here. You're not a racist. George Zimmerman isn't a racist. Killing an unarmed black kid is not racist. Fox News running Scary Black People Stories 24/7 isn't racist. The KKK is, undoubtedly, not racist. Who is? Me?

Republicans have been scratching this itch since 1968. You can read Kevin Phillips, one of the chief explicators of the Southern Strategy, if you're interested: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_strategy

I understand you're not interested. Still, I can't help but wonder why the GOP is an all-white party with a disproportionate power center in the old South. I'm interested why the GOP is a close ally to the NRA. I'm interested why so many of the GOP's leading opinion channelers are explicitly racist: Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh, Dinesh D'Souza, and Kevin Williamson. I wonder why the GOP's leading black token candidate, Ben Carson, is a student of W Cleon Skousen, a racist and Mormon with views so extreme that the church in Salt Lake took the extraordinary step of separating itself from his ideas.

Extra points if you can guess which famous Arizonan was also a student of Skousen's.

Answer: Ev Mecham.

I wonder about these things because I'm human who listens to other humans talk about what upsets them. Almost without exception, if they're conservative, it's things like black people, Latinos, Muslims, Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, and Al Sharpton. Xenophobia seems to be the key personality difference that separates conservatives from liberals. Maybe 1% of conservatives are genuinely taken with thinkers like Edmund Burke, Russell Kirk, and Friedrich Hayek. Probably 95% of conservatives have no idea who those people are, however. There's got to be something else going on.

A party armed to the teeth, paranoid to the hilt, racist to its marrow, and mendacious in its own heart should probably think a little more and scream a little less about touchy subjects. Unless your real point is just to play the loyal party guy preaching to the duhs and ignos who hang out here.


Soleri:

You're so color blind and race baiting, you can't even see simple points. Let me dumb it down a little (or a lot).

You (and a lot of tin hat wearing progressives) react to one of these mass shootings with inane accusations about the NRA and the GOP.

My points are simple:

1. The gun violence in the cities LISTED IN THE REPORTS is much worse than the mass shootings in term of total human carnage. And it's not even close.

2. The criminals engaged in that carnage have NOTHING to do with the NRA. NOTHING. THEY"RE JUST BAD, BAD guys and if you eliminated the NRA tomorrow, there would be no effect whatsoever on their violence.

3. Those cities are almost always under the influence of Democratic leadership.

Ergo, to howl about the NRA (or the GOP) as a cause or influence over the violence in this country is beyond stupid.


Oh- and Ev Mecham. And 1968. So, there's those.

Your problem is that you start with a conclusion and then bend, twist, spin and manipulate events or data to fit your screwy view on racism.

Like when you type this:

"It's all about race. It always has been."

You have the Zimmerman/Martin tragedy completely upside down.

What else do we need to know?

If this isn't about racism,why do my friends on the right always bring up Chicago's muder rate?What does that have to do with what to do about mass killings?I don't understand the correlation.

Mike:

Because the cold hard fact is that the murders in the cities I outlined (no matter the color) grossly outnumber the murders in the mass killings.

But they happen one or two at a time so they don't get the media coverage that the mass shootings do.

And they're generally not the white male killer(s) that the left tries to link with the GOP.

It's of little comfort, but we are not alone. IMHO, sick society describes much of the world, populated with “aimless, infantalized young men.” The world, including the United States, already has too many young men and not enough jobs or even food – an apparently permanent condition. Elsewhere, they are riding around in pickup trucks with antitank guns, RPGs and machine guns, blowing up World Heritage sites and chopping off heads. Yes, I think we, too, are probably past “solving” the problem of too many young men with no future and little or nothing to do. But, to preserve our civilization, we need just one new law, and that is if anyone is caught with a gun in public – as opposed to in his home or, say, his hunt or gun club or shooting range – he goes straight to jail, for a long time. Forget background checks and all the rest. They're both a waste of time and conceivably have potential for government abuse.

INPHX, I guess I must be the racist because when someone excuses massacres by saying blacks are much worse, and the cities they live in have Democratic mayors, and you can't do ANYTHING because BAD, BAD, BAD, infinity.

I'm sorry if I missed the logic in your screed, because the leaps there were just a bit outside my verticle jump.

Since I can't reach you, let me talk about something else to OTHER people who are probably not as reflexively defensive about your grotesque party as you are.

In 199

This is chronic only to TheUSA, https://en.wikipedia.org/.../List_of_school_shootings_in.... There are plenty of functional democracies without our level of gun violence. Let the public health evaluators write model legislation or amendments based on best practices established in functioning democracies.

Soleri:

Don't know if you're a racist or not; I tend to avoid that accusation absent clear and compelling evidence.

Quite a contrast with you.


Any logic related to a racial issue would most likely be outside of your vertical leap, primarily because of your stupid, ingrained, inflexible, illogical, and stuck in the 1950's view on race.

in the face of repeated, overwhelming evidence that guns are a plague upon the land, the status quo abides. A few things have happened: guns have become normalized in the culture (fetishization is another matter). - enough Americans feel threatened viscerally so that FEAR has become a political commodity; and the NRA et al have succeeded in creating an arms race. And there's a positive correlation between pro-gun sentiment and ant-government (your source of real law and order) sentiment. You can't tell me what to do because…. LIBERTY!
"Bad guys" get their hands on legally purchased guns and "good guys" buy them just to keep up, the spiral continues. Have pro gun lobbyists published lists of instances where good guys have prevented or interrupted (potentially) fatal acts by bad guys? I'm sure that it's happened, but the instances would be laughable stacked against the number of mass killings. Still, the day after Roseburg, I Heard an entire segment where a Guest on an NPR/OPR show insisted, loudly and without counter argument, that the lesson was that there weren't enough GGWGs on the campus. (I have exchanged my usual tin foil fedora for a white hat in order to write this properly.) I'm afraid that it will tale several horrific episodes orders of magnitude beyond the new normal to engage the sprit and the levers of reform, if it happens at all.
Oh, and another thing, the Douglas county sheriff is not just a pro gun type, but an unusually nutty one. His career provides us with a "naturalistic experiment." Will he be re-elected- I'm betting that he will, and overwhelmingly. Marijuana is finally legalized here in Oregon. I don't care personally, but it seems like a good idea. It's still illegal in most places.But machines that are designed solely for killing efficiently from a distance are largely unregulated. Odd that.

Damn, the Beauty College massacre in Mesa was almost fifty years ago now, and I still remember thinking it was a one in a million fluke back then. There wasn't that much in the way of serious gun-slinging gang banging, so the right didn't have that false equivalency to raise. It was just sort of out there, all by itself; no profit motive, no consequence of prohibition or criminalization of petty vices, no Saint Valentine's Day Massacre that could be mitigated just by repealing an amendment. Oh, wait...

Good memory, Pat. The beauty school shooting would barely rise to prominence now in body count. But another young white dude:

http://murderpedia.org/male.S/s/smith-robert-benjamin.htm

INPHX- you might have phrased it a little differently. But your link says something important and suggests a couple of other things. What it says is that blacks are disproportionately the victims of gun violence, regardless of who's doing the shooting. They are hurt by this more than other groups. So if that was to any degree the intent of linking there, I agree. You suggest that it's blacks shooting blacks. Don't know- won't argue it. (It's part of a larger, very complicated picture- will leave it there.)
But the "lots of urban blacks in the NRA" I guess is meant to point out an apparent contradiction: blacks disproportionately involved in gun violence, but probably not NRA members ergo,….. ???? The NRA has its grassroots and astroturf wings, but its to a very large extent a front for gun manufacturers who are getting rich off of selling killing machines to pretty much anyone of a certain age who wants one. Without the profit motive here we wouldn't have a gun culture. The NRA and manufacturers are selling death, they don't care who buys it as long as it sells, and that includes urban blacks.

FOR THAT DAY?
I'm going to keep stocking up on guns and ammo in my walk in closet armory.
JB

Another Phoenix loss only a few of us will mourn. I received an email from a Rogue reader in Michigan asking what had become of the Tovrea Mansion. He and his wife had been married there in 2000. And they came back recently to find it abandoned, looted, partly demolished. Probably old news to those paying attention.

The "mansion" was a large ranch house around 46th Street and Van Buren that had become a venue for weddings etc. But for many years it was the home of the Tovrea family. It was concealed behind hedges and walls, and especially the large slaughterhouses, meat packing operation and feedlots. This was a pioneer family that still lived surrounded by its productive enterprise what was a huge part of the old city's economy.

When I was on the ambulance in the 1970s, we went there on a call and found, behind the gate, this lovely oasis where the family still lived.

All gone now. Short-hustle on.

“The latest killer, as is almost always the case, was a white male. Twenty-six years old. It caused me to think ….” As is usually the case in this type of thing, this wasn’t a racial issue. The only one that does come to mind is the Charleston/church killings.

The more common, every day killings are same race affairs. The mains reasons for killing are the usual: greed, envy, lust, jealousy, love affairs gone bad, etc.

The chief perpetrators are young, white nut jobs; or as RC says much more eloquently “aimless, infantilized young men.” I concur that we have become a “sick society” – with the best of intentions. As usual, idealism and good intentions collide with reality. Two examples come to mind. The first is child rearing via “self-esteem maximization”. The other deals with the perceived dangers out there; we have become a society of paranoids. The results into overprotectiveness and over-supervision of children. Oops a third: the evolution of the role of mother/father from parent to “BFF”.
An excellent article

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2015/09/the-coddling-of-the-american-mind/399356/

It’s about the personality and mental health of college students.

Re “(by age twenty-six) . I had already been a paramedic, college instructor, theater worker, and reporter. By then I was an editor with employees under me and a dying mother. People depended on me. It was a different time in every way.” My chronology is much the same: college (BSEE), stint in Navy, two years on job as practicing electrical engineer in Atlanta. There was nothing special about RC or me; it was normal. The expectation was that the day you graduate from high school “you’re out of here.” Personally, I didn’t even want to be there that long, but it’s impossible to go to high-school, buy a car and rent an apartment. Most of us couldn’t even manage the buy-a-car part.

I question I like to ask people who are roughly my age (67): “When can you remember not working?” I’ll usually get this vacant look and staring at the ceiling. Then they’ll ask: “does delivering newspapers count as working?” I’d say: “Where you paid to deliver those papers?” They’d say “Yes”, to which I’d say: “you were working”. More staring at the ceiling or out the window. Then an answer like “twelve” or “thirteen”.

A fun follow-up question is “what off beat things have you been paid to do – not the usual stuff like burger-flipper, gas pumper at the filling station or bag-boy/cashier at the super market?” The answers are amazing. My resume would include donut fryer, boat bailer, fish and duck cleaning, and smudge pot tender.

It’d be fun to hear from fellow-geezers on crazy stuff they were paid to do as a kid.

wkg i had read that Atlantic article previously and just re read it here. About a week ago I wrote myself a page about how difficult I am finding it in talking Chit. I felt better.

Today I had lunch with 10 old retired male cops. (No one under 65) With about half minorities. Even though it was a public place we didn't hold back from taking Chit. I presume others in the cafe were offended (No one over 60). But we cut loose regardless. A good time was had and I feel better.

@Cal: glad you were able to enjoy your chit fest. I find it amazing the amount of chit I can get away with as a geezer that would have gotten me beat up as a younger man.

I am surprised that no one has mentioned the Buddist Temple shootings.
It was this terrible event that gave us all the gift that keeps on taking: AKA Joe Arpaio.

The bungled handling of that case by the MCSO opened the door for Joe.

Tovrea Castle still lives:

http://www.tovreacastletours.com/

They must have seen it during the remodel/restoration a few years ago.

Tovrea mansion was a different structure, about half a mile or more west of the Castle.

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/cafe/cult-of-second-amendment


I was reading Dawgzy's link above when I began thinking how 2nd Amendment absolutists originally popped into public consciousness. That was during the Waco Siege in 1993 when an almost comical cult of religious fanatics decided to create their own piece of Heaven on Earth and shot four ATF agents, thus initiating a standoff with the federal government while using their own children as hostages. Law and order, usually conservative code for letting the police deal harshly with blacks, suddenly was forgotten. The new enemy became law and order itself, or anyone who would dare impose it on white Christians.

What this led to was the worst case of domestic terrorism in this nation's history up to that point. Timothy McVeigh was a spectator in Waco and transformed himself from a soldier defending America to a soldier attacking a tyrant, i.e, the American government.

McVeigh was, as are so many on the far right end of the spectrum, obsessed with race. He read The Turner Diaries, a novel written about an apocalyptic scenario in 2099, in which a race war erupts in the aftermath of a violent revolution. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Turner_Diaries This was not merely an eerie coincidence of novel and real life. McVeigh was explicitly taking his cues from this novel. And this novel, published in 1978, almost sounds like the kind of lunacy that has been mainstreamed in the modern Republican Party.

I'll note without comment that McVeigh had two voluntary associations in his brief, tormented life: the NRA and the Republican Party.

Like McVeigh, Dylann Roof (remember him? Charleston massacre?) owned a copy of The Turner Diaries. Like McVeigh, and Roof, Chris Harper-Mercer of Roseburg, OR, had issues with sexual frustration, along with a sense of not fitting in. There were the telltale white-supremacist leanings despite in Mercer's case being "mixed" himself. Like the Columbine killers, too, rage from being bullied seems to be a factor in their personality disturbances. Curiously, they're also atheists, suggesting such a profound alienation from ordinary life that it extended into the afterlife as well.

This comment is not troll-bait. I'm not going to argue about what seems indisputable in our modern political life - the extreme and noxious whiff of racism fueling passionate anti-modernism on the right. Also, I know a few leftists who have bizarre revolutionary fantasies. But this insanity is much more evident on other end of the political spectrum. Indeed, it's so disproportionate that I'll hazard this guess: it's a feature, not a bug.

Tovrea mansion. I know of what you talk now (west of 48th Street on the south side of Van Buren). Yep, its a shell. It was sold and converted to become a restaurant/event venue, but it folded quickly and is now derelict. I never really thought much of it except as a very extravagant ranch-style home.

What was the name of the Italian restaurant just west of the Tovrea and now gone because of the freeway? Riazzi's? That place I miss!

Soleri:

Just when I thought you couldn't get any loonier.....

Trying to link "crazy folks" with the NRA, the GOP, oh, and of course, racism.

If you really believe that, it at least explains some of your comments on these blogs.

Call it a consistent insanity.

Guess we need to ban "The Turner Diaries" next, eh???

I certainly understand why you're disinclined to argue about what seems indisputable to you.

Call it consistent insanity.


Geez guys, you are all old and living in the past. Why do these kids end up doing this kind of crap? Because they are disconnected from our society.

Why? No jobs. Immigrants have come and taken all the bottom rung jobs, and cling desperately to them. So go to college, qualified or ready is not the question, just nothing else to do. Get out, and find nothing much to do, because jobs are hard to find. Then play video games and further disassociate from reality, and watch violent movies, all while your elders are always at that mythical work denied to you.

BTW- this applies in the hood as well, except the police state is in your face, and the drug trade provides instant cash that working does not. Yet another speed bump.

So, ain't America grand- you can be underemployed, overeducated, and have nothing to do.

And we sit here and wonder at the only alternative being a cul de sac of violence.

LOL. We are damned fools to see that reality is no longer geared to allowing young people much of a future.

So, they blow up.

Surprise, surprise.

https://jubiloemancipationcentury.wordpress.com/2015/09/01/outmanned-and-outgunned-african-americans-separate-and-unequal-experience-with-the-right-to-bear-arms-and-gun-control/

Being in the drug trade is a job, a small business even. You have to put in the hours on the corner or going to meetings, you have inventory and costs (legal and otherwise), have customers, and have competitors.

The drug job has social and legal stigma attached and put the "regular" drudge work off limits once you've been convicted even after you have served your time.

Drug dealers are just undocumented pharmacists.

Whats the difference beween Martin Shrekeli and Chapo Guzman?
You get a better deal from Shorty?
And you feel better?

Here is a link that further illustrates how many losers this society is generating:

http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/its-getting-harder-to-move-beyond-a-minimum-wage-job/


So, might as well sling rock and make some bank. Cause $150 a week for a real job sux. Especially when you hit 30.

Fools. And the sooner some of you hit the dirt nap the better, because there will be no progress with all of these boomers standing in the way.

The really funny part is how many boomers are going to find their retirement will resemble living in the hood, because that will be all they can afford, suckerz.

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