Culture and Conditioning

Remarkably, some rightie bloggers are still trying to peg Jared Loughner as a “left wing radical.” This is true even as news media are doing their best to argue that only those nutty lefties are claiming politics had anything to do with the shooting in Tuscon. Chris Cillizza:

In the immediate aftermath of the shooting, liberals sought to paint Loughner as an anti-government, tea party conservative. Conservatives retorted that Loughner lacked anything close to a coherent political philosophy — a case strengthened by subsequent glimpses into his personal life that suggests someone struggling with mental illness.

And the rightie punditocracy, for the most part, is going for the meme that Loughner’s acts were entirely random, and anyone claiming a connection to political rhetoric is a “charlatan” (George Will) or a political opportunist (David Brooks).

In other words, they’re going overboard trying to squelch the thought that an overheated political environment had anything whatsoever to do with the Tuscon massacre. It was just a crazy guy doing this, see? We’re not even supposed to think that hate speech from the Right was in any way involved.

(Of course, when Loughner eventually goes on trial, and his attorneys try to present an insanity defense, suddenly the Right will decide his actions weren’t so random after all. Wait and see.)

Michael Tomasky points to a Republican senator who said some sensible things about “caution” and “reflection” and maybe the inflammatory rhetoric has gone to far. What’s remarkable about this is that the senator would not go on record; he is quoted anonymously. Tomasky writes,

What was this senator afraid of? Backlash, of course. From Limbaugh and Fox. From voters and constituents – on the right. Maybe, ultimately, afraid of being next. That this senator feels that fear, over remarks that should hardly be controversial to anyone, proves the point of those of us who’ve been writing that the climate matters and Republicans should do something about it.

A letter writer to the Boston Globe makes another good point —

IN YOUR editorial yesterday concerning the Arizona shootings (“A crazed loner, an old story, and a harsh political climate’’), you write, “But those who have rushed to blame conservative causes or leaders for the killings should pause and consider whether they, too, are waving a bloody shirt and feeding a culture of denunciation.’’

On the contrary, these are real bloodied shirts, and we must loudly and repeatedly denounce those who spit out anti-government hatred and advocate revolution. To be moderate in reaction to Saturday’s killings would vindicate the perpetrators of vitriol, and in a short time, we would be right back into the same rhetoric that led to this most recent violence.

In other words, hate speech coming from the Right over fantasy grievances like birth certificates and socialized medicine is tolerated year after year. But speak up immediately after a very real massacre, and the Powers That Be say “shhhhhh!

What Brooks, Cillizza, et al. won’t acknowledge is that the mentally ill don’t live in a vacuum. They are affected very deeply by what’s around them. Although there’s no way to know, it’s entirely possible that if Loughner were living on some peaceful Quaker commune instead of in Arizona, a state roiling with hot-button controversies, as his assumed schizophrenia took over his mind he might have developed an entirely different — and less violent — set of illusions. Maybe he’d think the granola was singing to him or that goats channel messages from outer space.

In other words, just because Loughner’s political ideas were nonsensical doesn’t let the political culture off the hook.

We talk a lot about “political culture.” The word “culture” is related to growing things, as in cultivation. When one is tilling soil and preparing it for planting, one is “cultivating” the soil. Scientists use the word “culture” to describe growing microorganisms for study.

So, “culture” is not a static thing; it is a cultivation, or a process of growing. What is our whackjob political culture growing? Nothing wholesome, I would say. But we are being prepped to go into Official National Denial — that the incessant eliminationist rhetoric about “armed and dangerous,” “second amendment solutions,” and The Coming Nightmare Totalitarian State of an Alien Communist Black President being spewed not by fringe outsiders but by people in positions of authority had nothing whatsoever to do with the Tucson shooting, and if you even think such a thing you are a bad person.

Yep, nothing to see here. Move along.

Michael Tomasky makes another good point in another post. It seems many of his readers (and I’m seeing this everywhere) are incapable of understanding there’s a difference between expressing dislike for someone and threatening to kill someone. As a thought experiment, he asks which is worse

1. Mike Tomasky is a world-class idiot and a—hole and should go f— himself.
2. Mike Tomasky doesn’t have any problems that a Glock couldn’t solve.

Especially in a nation armed to the teeth, the second statement is far more irresponsible than the first. This should be obvious to any sensible person. However, in America, we’re not supposed to notice this.

Tomasky continues,

But if guns are part of your life, it may be the imagery that comes to mind, and it’s far worse than calling someone a dirty name or a war criminal. And sure it’s happened among liberals, but it’s worse among conservatives. Check this out, which another friend assembled:

*On October 9, 2009, House candidate Robert Lowry of Florida held an event at a Broward County gun range during which he fired at a series of symbolic political targets, including a silhouette with his opponent Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz’s initials on it.

*On January 10, 2010, Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle spoke of the need for “Second Amendment remedies” to congressional policies, and hinted that such remedies might be needed to address “the Harry Reid problems.”

*On May 10, 2010, House candidate Brad Goerhing from California’s 11th District wrote on his Facebook page: “If I could issue hunting permits, I would officially declare today opening day for liberals. The season would extend through November 2 and have no limits on how many taken as we desperately need to ‘thin’ the herd.”

*On June 12, 2010, Rep. Giffords’ very own Republican opponent Jesse Kelly held an event advertised locally as follows: “Get on Target for Victory in November. Help remove Gabrielle Giffords from office. Shoot a fully automatic M16 With Jesse Kelly.” Get that again. Remove Giffords. Shoot an M16.

*On October 21, 2010, Dallas pastor and House candidate Stephen Broden, said the violent overthrow of the U.S. government in 2010 should not be “the first option,” but citizens ought to use “any means necessary” and that violence should remain an option “on the table.”

These weren’t 22-year-old loners or even local talk-radio hosts. These were candidates for Congress! Find me five Democrats from this past election who talked like that about their opponents or their government. Find me one.

See also Tom Schaller.

36 thoughts on “Culture and Conditioning

  1. At this point, the MSM pundits, and the Republican politicians, can’t and won’t ackowledge that there’s any problem with the political discourse in this country. Because to do so would mean they were complicit in the current highly toxic environment.
    For the Republican politicians, who’ve worked hard to demonize Democrat’s, it would begin to undo 30+ years of effort. You can’t easily go from, ‘He/she
    is a Socialist/Fascist/Communist/Traiterous/Treasonous/Heathen,’ to, ‘Well, my opponent and I may disagree, but we do so over a governing philosophy, and with an appreciation for one another as human beings trying to provide workable solutions to issues and problems that our country faces. We just come at them from different angles.’ Not only would that confuse the rubes, but demotivate them. You can’t build people up into a feverish hatred and then leave them flat like that. There’s a sexual analogy, but I’ll leave that to your imaginations.
    To say that they were doing that would be to ackowledge not only that it was the wrong thing to do, but that they were doing that in the first place knowingly.
    And, remember, being a Conservative means never having to say you’re sorry. So, full speed ahead!
    As for the political pun-twit’s (outside of the Krugman’s, Rich’s, Dionne’s, and a handful of others who’ve been pointing out these politically toxic and potentially lethal demonizations), to ackowledge that there was eliminationist rhetoric, and that you didn’t pick up on it, might make people wonder if you should have ever gotten that high-paying job in the first place, let alone whether you deserve to keep it. And ever since the magic carpet ride that was Iraq, well, you can’t look back as a reporter on past mistakes, you have to look forward.
    And then there’s the continual pressing need for access (how the Hell did journalist’s ever do their jobs without this precious access before?), lest they not be able to do their 6, 7 or 8 figure a year jobs. Well, then, you just have to keep that old “Both sides do it!” meme running full bore, or say bye-bye to your access. No invite to the cocktail party for you!
    Just like Conservative politicians never have to say they’re sorry, being a member of the political pun-twit class, means that, and also never admitting you were wrong.
    So, all in all, there’s a lot invested in the status quo. And besides, have some sympathy here, folks – all of their jobs are at stake!
    And the merry-go-round takes another turn…
    My question is, how long before we go from the merry-go-round, to the shooting gallery?

  2. Tom Schaller made a good point about “by any means necessary.” I vaguely remember when Malcolm X said it and the reaction of almost everyone was very much against him. And there was the picture of Malcolm X standing by a window holding a rifle.

  3. I think a lot of the commentary has to do with the space between Tomasky’s examples. If there were a third choice, “Tomasky’s going to meet his Waterloo”, that would be (has been in a similar instance) interpreted differently by different people: some who say “Waterloo was a battle, and battles have deaths, and therefore it’s an example of violent rhetoric” and others who say that “Waterloo” has lost his violent connotation over the years through use as a hackneyed metaphor and now just means “end” or “comeuppance”.
    Something like Obama’s “knife to a gun fight” comment. The first thing that brought to mind for me was Sean Connery in the Untouchables, and second was that Obama was using an image that is so cliche’d that it undermines his reputation for good speaking.

  4. I think that it’s pretty clear that by this weekend, not only will everyone on the right blame all of the violent political rhetoric in this country on that one Sheriff in AZ, but will start saying that he was the real shooter, and that that poor run-of-the-mill lunatic was the fall guy in his “Parallax View” scheme to shoot the Congresswoman and the Judge.
    Wanna bet?

    PS: And you absolutely have to love the right’s jumping up and screaming to defend itself, when all the Sheriff said was ‘radio and TV personalities.’ Not, Conservative, not Republican, not Tea Party, not namin’ nobody, not namin’ no channel’s, not nothin…
    Feeling a tad guilty, are we?
    Well, as my Mother always says, “The truth hurts!”

  5. Scientists use the word “culture” to describe growing microorganisms for study.

    The word they use for the material that sustains and nourishes the culture is “media.”

  6. I knew a paranoid schizophrenic, and while I’m sure clinicians have found all kinds of variety and degrees of severity in the way this illness manifests, the one thing that struck me about this acquaintaince (apart from the fact that he wasn’t certain he had a body), was that he was extremely sensitive to emotional disturbances, and to the general harshness and minor stresses of living in a large city. (Like Loughner, he too struggled with a basic math course at a community college – and dropped out – “it was too much stress”). I cannot imagine someone like this in an overheated political environment like Arizona.

    I like what PZ Myers wrote:

    What we have here is an attempted assassination of a politician by an insane crank at a political event, in a state where the political discourse has been an unrelenting howl of eliminationist rhetoric and characterization of anyone to the left of Genghis Khan as a traitor and enemy of the state…and now, when six (including a nine year old girl) lie dead and another fourteen are wounded, now suddenly we’re concerned that it is rude and politicizing a tragedy to point out that the right wing has produced a toxic atmosphere that pollutes our politics with hatred and the rhetoric of violence?

    Screw that. Now is the time to politicize the hell out of this situation. The people who are complaining are a mix of lefty marshmallows whose first reaction to the fulfillment of right-wing fantasies by a lunatic is to drop to their knees and beg forgiveness for thinking ill of people who paint bullseyes on their political opponents, and right wing cowards who are racing to their usual tactic of attacking their critics to shame them into silence. This is NOT the time to back down and suddenly find it embarrassing to point out that right-wing pundits make a living as professional goads to insanity.

    This reaction by the establishment media – like trying to pretend a severe, life-threatening case of cancer doesn’t exist – is to me, unbelievable, and condemns those who promote it. How many more have to die for these mandarins to wake up?

    A few quotes by Tom Tomorrow, cited by Myers:

    A physician cannot treat an illness s/he willfully refuses to diagnose. Violent political rhetoric is not fault of “both sides.”

    Weird: rightwingers say movies, video games affect behavior — but real world violent rhetoric from leaders & radio talkers have NO impact!

  7. Even a brief summary, like Tomasky’s, of two years of the most gun-centric TP behavior is damning, at least to anyone who can read.

    Ah, wait, I see the problem.

  8. Shame on us.
    I think all of us here have forgotten the greatest victim of this Tucson shooting.
    Yes, you see, Sarah Palin is the real victim here! Not the Congresswoman, the Judge, the little girl, or the other people, dead and wounded – it’s poor Sarah.

    Glenn Beck understands:
    “Sarah, as you know, peace is always the answer,” he said he wrote in his email to her. “I know you’re feeling the same heat — if not much more — on this. I want you to know you have my support. But please look into protection for your family. An attempt on you could bring the republic down.”
    Now I guess we have to give her a new nickname – ‘Sarah Caesar from Wasilla.’ A mere attempt on her, a 1/2 term Governor, and failed VP candidate, would topple our Republic if it was a house of cards. And I’m certainly not advocating something like that, just noting the sheer audacity and stupidity. But you’ve got to give Beckerhead credit – he’s building a false equivalence right before people’s eyes. ‘”SOME on the left” may well be targeting Sarah!’

    Somedays, and this is one of them, I wish I’d been smart enough to leave breadcrumbs behind so I could find my way back to the wormhole and the universe I once lived in…

  9. Good link, Moonbat…It’s a big help to be able to more precisely identify the things I see and understand intuitively but don’t have the skills to articulate. I’ve been struggling to express what I’ve seen in these disturbed individuals who show up at political rallies packing assault weapons and then relate it to the predictable outcome we’ve seen in Arizona. I know that they didn’t just show up of their own volition but they were prompted by outside forces of agitation, and the injection of fear and victimization by media sources.
    I still ask the question…Who in their right mind would show up at a public gathering carrying an assault weapon? To me it’s obvious that something is wrong with that picture…and that picture has been painted by the Tea Party. Rush,Beck, Malkin, Bachman, and many other malcontents.

  10. Swami,
    “I still ask the question…Who in their right mind would show up at a public gathering carrying an assault weapon?”
    The answer ir a rightiously indignant jackass of a moron with a thimble for a brain, a quarter of a roll of dimes and two tic-tac’s for his manhood, and the women and children who love him – just don’t ask me for what. Maybe ’cause he’ll shoot them if they don’t.

  11. gulag…Or the answer might be a “true” Tea Party patriot coming to nourish with innocent blood/ refresh the tree of liberty.

  12. There is absolutely nothing that will convince the righties in this country to come clean and accept responsibility for the toxic political culture and the nasty things they say to dehumanize and attack anyone who doesn’t agree with them. Sadly, I think more innocents will die because they won’t wake up to reality.

  13. “But please look into protection for your family. An attempt on you could bring the republic down.”

    I love it, bring the republic down, it’s so romantic, that BecKKK is quite a piece of work. Seems to me the country (I mean Republic or maybe Homeland) would be just fine without the two of them; somehow I think we would manage. I’m sure it has been mentioned here but the fact that sister Sarah took down the “target map” says it all; if they were just innocent “surveyor symbols” then why not leave the map up. But to argue this point with the dimwits is pointless, they do not understand shame, they always win. To quote my favorite song of all time (I’m a conservative – Iggy Pop _ 1980):

    Nothing is denied me and nothing ever hurts
    I got bored so I’m making my millions
    When your a conservative you get a better break
    Your always on the right side when your a conservative

  14. Erinyes, thanks for the link. I’m going to bookmark it.

    Like Swami up thread, I’ve been struggling to make sense of the insanity that seems to have enveloped the right wingers like an invisible toxic cloud that only they can feel and see. In addition to Moonbat’s excellent links, I’d like to offer the following for consideration:

    This study was commissioned by an actor (if I remember correctly) as a joke to see if there was any difference between right wing and liberal brains. To the surprise of everyone involved, it turns out there actually is a significant difference. And that difference directly correlates with the findings of Dr. Robert Altemeyer, who has made a 20+ year study of authoritarian followers.

    Brain scans reveal that Right wing conservatives have a larger amygdala (fear and other primal emotions) than do liberals, as well as decidedly smaller anterior cingulates (decision making, optimism, courage). To wit: they are more easily frightened and less capable of making intelligent, courageous decisions.

    If one is fearful and lacks courage, then guns rise to primal importance; guns being their perceived best defense against a dark and dangerous world. Yes, of course liberals have guns, too, but the reasons for having them are more along the lines of collecting, hunting, and personal protection, as in, if the guy breaking into my house has a gun, I’d be a fool to not have one, too. But that’s about as far as it goes. Not so with the gun worshipers.

    The thing that really fries my hide, though, is how come Karl Rove and the Republican political machine figured this out years ago and have been capitalizing on it ever since, when the scientific data just came out this month? Argh! I feel so pawned!

  15. Well, clearly I’m not doing this right. You will all have to figure out how to get there on your own. I am such a techno-dweeb, I’m embarrassed on my behalf.

  16. Americans just have NO manners any more. The schools should require classes studying Miss Manners at least for the first 9 years of school. Learning to respect each other for the individuals they are isn’t easy to learn when trash talking is being done by many people in a child’s life. But, going back to the days of good manners and wishing every one including your worst enemy a good, happy life would really improve every one’s quality of life.

  17. Dennis Prager needs to be pitied, or better yet institutionalized. I’ve read a lot of trash in my time,but nothing as intellectually gnarled as that little excursion into wingnutia. He would do better writing a piece on How I spent my summer vacation then trying to pass himself off as some kind of an intellect. Gee, Moses never addressed the issue of same sex marriage..Well, why didn’t Jehovah clue Moses in when he was up on Mt.Sinai, after all, being the Alpha and the Omega one might conclude that Jehovah would have seen that issue coming and given Moses a heads up.

  18. I almost got through Prager’s piece, same old, same old.
    The texts are sacred, we sing their praises, then we do the opposite.
    Colin Powel lied about the WMD in Iraq while addressing the UN.
    Bush / Cheney attacked several countries without declarations of war.That’s at least two “commandments” broken.
    I don’t recall seeing one of these * at the bottom of the ten commandments along with a list of exclusions.
    The leash around our necks was shortened more under Bush than ever in history.Ari Fliesher said “Watch what you say”, imagine if a “leftard” said that?
    Last week, a former friend emailed me a hate filled screed about Jane Fonda; when I called bullshit on him, he sayed he’d blow her brains out if he had the chance, that he’d call me when he got home from church.WTF?
    It is without irony that we all condemn what happened in Arizona, but don’t voice outrage over what is happening with military ops that are killing innocent civilians
    in lands far away.
    Several days after hurricane Charley ripped through Port Charolotte Fl,I walked by a crumpled building. The sign on the building read “Psychic Readings, Spirtual Advisor”. You think they knew the storm was coming? Their business was, after all, predicting the future.
    We live in a time when people poo-poo science and look to ancient Mayan myths, bring guns to church, and favour expanding war over affordable health care.
    Second amendment “remedies” for democracy.
    There is a lot of talk now on my local radio station about mental health.
    What exactly is insanity? Where does reality end and crazy begin?

    • What exactly is insanity? Where does reality end and crazy begin?

      Keep in mind that there is no psychological definition of “insanity.” It’s a word you find in law that reflects a 19th-century understanding of mental illness, but which has no scientific meaning.

      It’s becoming increasingly apparent that Loughner is a bona fide schizophrenic — a “textbook case,” in fact — and schizophrenia is extreme enough that it’s clearly way different from “weird, but normal.”

      That said, as we get into the trial phase of this episode we’re going to be hearing a lot about the legal definition of insanity, and psychiatrists will be coming out of the woodwork complaining that the law is nuts. The Arizona and federal government are going to spend millions of dollars in protracted trials in which people are supposed to decide if Loughner knew right from wrong, which is actually a meaningless question when you’re dealing with psychotics. They should save the taxpayers a ton of money and just commit him for life.

      In most states, it is not true that a person who “gets off” on an insanity plea can be released from a psychiatric institution on a psychiatrist’s say-so. There has to be a court order, and in such a high-profile case it’s unlikely any judge would ever give the order. But if they can keep Loughner under supervision so that it’s certain he’s taking his meds, he won’t be a danger to anyone.

  19. “Where does reality end and crazy begin?”
    I’d say a good place to start is at the point of a gun.
    If you’re pointing one, you’d better have a damn good reason, like self-defense, or a REAL attack on this country – not an attack drummed up by the voices you hear on the radio, or the ones in you head. The Conservatives act as if there was a real threat to this country, that they are the only ones to recognize it, and the only ones who know what to do about it. Hey, assholes, the cemetaries in this country have at least as many Liberals and Independents who fought in every war, and probably more – foreign, or domestic, which, need I remind, you assholes started the domestic one.
    You don’t own a monopoly on patriotism, so STFU and hide the gun where the kids can’t find it.

    Where else does the crazy begin?
    Here’s a start – I mean, if a Psychiatrist was asked if a full grown male going to daytime public political gatherings dressed in camo and armed with to the teeth with rifles, handguns, and long hunting knives was normal, I doubt the Doc would say that he was completely so.
    Even if you leave everything else alone, you have to ask, ‘uh, camo?’ You’re waddling your fat 300lb+ ass down Main Street with enough arms to take ‘Heartbreak Ridge’ all by yourself, what the fuck exactly do you BLEND INTO there, Cha-cha? If you dressed completely in brown there, Bubba, maybe they’d be confused enough to think you were an up-armoured UPS truck – but camo?

  20. Oh My such a great piece,and what outstanding,thought prevoking questions it brought up.My question is Can insanity be created? And as an observer in this world I would say it can be. Suggestion is a powerful thing.I don’t know all the facts surrounding this shooter and I don’t care to guess his motivations..but to understand the climate created by folks such as beckkk and insanity one only need to be trapped in a car with talk radio for a short time to paint a real clear picture….”Buy gold !!!Protect your family! I did! ” (because money will be meaningless in the end times that will be here ANYDAY and only the saavy will be walking around with a fortune in gold able to buy anything they want and safety from the starving masses…which reminds me” Buy food survival packages to hoard for your family in these “”uncertain times”” Our famlies are protected and yours should be too!” ….lets just take that crap alone…setting the other 12 hours or so of crap aside for a minute…
    Protect your family from what??This all just feeds into the hand of the unbalanced ..and we all know they are not gonna be able to defend themselves in “these uncertain times” beckkk suggests we all need to prepare for by beating the enemy(or even the unprepared looking for a hand out) with their gold bricks! By God if the shit is gonna get so road warrior bad we need to stock up on guns to protect ourselves! By the end of a broadcast a man who loves, provides and wants to protect their famlies is ready to go solider of fortune/ survivalist…
    They never say whats gonna happen(the mystery makes it even more frightening)…but the liberals are sure to bring down the country- and it’s getting worse everyday..and the end times are in sight the way we are going..(I hope you all saved your ducttape and plastic)
    Now I don’t know if this shooter ever spent any time hearing this (it happens everyday!) but OMG it’s a wonder we don’t have MORE people freaking out.The climate they create EVERY DAY breeds insanity like food left on a counter will draw roaches…

  21. From the book “__ ________ _____ (1)”

    The normality of an action is what defines our rationality. Anything that diverges from that, could be considered a reason for insanity, and often the separation of both could be measured in millimeters. To focus our thoughts in a particular idea could result in two types of craziness: one is directly related to the elimination of the circumstances which could restrict our ability to develop our understanding; the other one is the opposite, based on fixating our imagination on surrounding events that affect our conscience, which would go in reality’s detriment. The reasons for human craziness are almost infinite, but taking aside physical or genetical influences, we could assume that the environment in which we live, and the experiences that we are forced to deal with, are the cause of most of our knowledge’s misbehaviors.

  22. justme277,
    Let those fools buy all the gold they want. Gold, pshaw!
    What happens when need change, huh? That’s why I’m trying to corner the market in silver. Silver’s the key, I tell you! I’ll rule the world through making change! BWAHAHA!!!
    And for only a mere $500 invetment, you too can by… 🙂

    Yeah, you listen to or watch enough of that stuff, it drums away at the reptilian part of the brain that just knows attack, defend, eat, sleep, shit, and survive.
    Which pretty much explains Sarah for everyone.

  23. Justme277,
    It appears you and I are hooked up to the same hichin’ post.
    I feel exactly what you wrote.With one caveat; every person should learn to grow some of their own food, Mother nature is on the rampage, and food will soon get expensive ( like it ain’t already?)

  24. Erinyes,,I agree about growing our own food. I live in a farm state and on top of that I just enjoy canning stuff..but my plan in doing this is to prepare for winter or share extras with friends..I am not planning for the end times THEY are predicting.

    I know a guy.Socially very liberal, fiscally very conservative.He is a good middle class working guy who loves his family.He cuts wood to help heat his modest home, and always has a new Lexus.He is pretty diverse.Most of his days are spent in his car, traveling across our state to one business account or another listening to the Grateful dead station on XM radio.I should also mention that every few years he does go out hunting and I believe he is a person who owns a hand gun as well for household protection.He has no criminal record and I consider him to be a very stable, mellow ,kind person and a outstanding father.
    I went to his home for a get together and I couldn’t help but notice he had this HUGE stock pile of water(enough for most of Des Moines).Now this guy is not right wing paranoid.He is a smart thoughtful very stable person. The next afternoon just he and I went out riding on the Harleys.We stopped and were chatting when the massive amounts of water came up. I learned he had spent a few days listening to “regular radio” and had found his way to talk radio- he confessed to me that all it took was a few days before he found himself swept into this meme of ” He was the man! and what kind of man would he be if he didn’t protect his family?? He told me he freaked out and before he knew it he was hoarding food and water like a rodent before winter.Finally his wife asked him why he was doing this and he told me it was at that moment he realized he didn’t know why….they had gotten to him on the the most primal urge to protect his family- from what he was unable to define.He didn’t even realize how insane his behavior was until he stopped to look at what he was doing..they were able to fire him up and he didn’t even know how or why…they created , in his mind a sense of urgency so great he felt there was no time to check his behavior for rationalization- they made him feel if he was indeed a man this is what he would be doing.
    This is a smart consumer.He looks at every washer and dryer before he buys to pick the very best ones to save energy..he tried every car on the market before he was sold on Lexus.He is responsible, practical and the poster child for stability, yet in just a few days beckkk and friends had him in a survivalist frenzy from enemies he cannot define , whom he is still terrified of.He is not a weak, follow the crowd see him go “bat shit nuts” as his wife called it made me shutter at the thought if they did this to him what are they doing to the unbalanced?????

  25. justme277,
    “…most primal urge to protect his family…” -it drums away at the reptilian part of the brain.
    Wow, but on the plus side, at least he eventually realized it – before he was hip deep in worthless semi-gold coins and rutabaga seeds.

    On the other hand, you’ve given me a great idea, which I’ll have to get to before Beck realizes what this guy did.
    “C U N D Water!” It’ll be ‘specially designed’ water that can be stored for months -and absolutely safe to drink for your children. Use your stored up gold to buy extra life-giving water for the seeds in you survival garden.
    On a subscription basis, what do you guys think? What, 100 gallons a month for $500? Plus S & H, of course.


  26. I know what you mean, Justme.
    I visit websites from to Rense daily, and the crazy over at Rense is really out there, worse yet is the crazy that visits Rense but homesteads at the rightie sites. I ended up on one site after Deepwater Horizon sank where the comments would curl your hair.
    There is a lot of crazy stuff out there, and when some people see it written, or broadcast by their personal messiah, they just know it is truth.
    I sure hope your friend turns the corner, especially since his wife made the “batshit” comment.
    As far as what are they doing to the unbalanced, perhaps that explains the heightened security at airports, hospitals, etc. Threat assessments are part of national security, and no doubt many web sites are being watched for potential terrorist threats, foreign and domestic.

  27. Hey ‘GULAG, I’m running a special on dehydrated water this week, do you know anybody who needs some?

  28. erinyes,
    LOL! *
    We’ll split the profits.

    *What the Hell is wrong with me that I didn’t think of that?

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