–It isn’t Sarah’s fault.

The debt hawks are to economics as the creationists are to biology. Those, who do not understand monetary sovereignty, do not understand economics. Cutting the federal deficit is the most ignorant and damaging step the federal government could take. It ranks ahead of the Hawley-Smoot Tariff.

It isn’t Sarah’s fault

Jared Loughner was nuts. And those who are nuts do nutty things. He shot people, one of whom was a nationally known politician. What was his motive?

The word “motive” implies some sort of rationality. But, because Loughner was irrational, his motive could have been anything in his twisted mind. Did he want fame? Or friends? Or hate female politicians? (Or judges? Or kids?) Or the weather?

Whatever “motive” festered in his brain, Loughner was not unique. We have had assassinations, before. Judges, governors, mayors, even Presidents. Lincoln’s was successful; Reagan’s was not. It is hard to say that the harsh language of Sarah Palin, the Tea Party and the Fox News shouters was at fault. Yes, her repeated comment, “Don’t Retreat, Instead – RELOAD!” was idiotic. And her crosshairs ad was idiotic, too. And her repeated references to guns and shooting are idiotic. But she is only the idiotic product of our idiotic times.

Are Sarah, the Tea Party and Fox News any more at fault than, say, the Supreme Court, which has ruled that the 2nd Amendment words, “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State. . .” have absolutely no meaning whatsoever?” Are Sarah, the Tea Party and Fox News any more at fault than the millions of gun owners who claim that “Guns don’t kill; people kill” and who say their guns will be taken “from their cold, dead hand”? And what shall we say of the politicians, Democrats and Republicans, who have sent many thousands of Americans to die and be maimed in Viet Nam and Iraq, based on politically motivated lies? Have they helped set the precedent for, or are they merely the product of, the violence in our society?

Inflammatory language is meant to inflame. Sarah intended to inflame our basest instincts, and she has succeeded, particularly with those who have needed only a gentle nudge to push them off the cliff. Inflaming is the way she justifies her huge speaking fees. That’s her business. Without outrageousness, what does she have? Certainly not calm, logical, intelligent perspective. And if by sowing the wind, she has reaped the whirlwind, is it her fault one nut took it too far?

It’s not just her. The entire political scene has become Palinized. Extreme has become the new center. When everyone is shouting, only the loudest will be heard.

And then this happens. And we all look around and we wonder. Why? Why?

First, of course, we will hear the “It’s not my fault” bleating. And there will be the finger pointing (“We didn’t do it and anyway, they did it first.”). But perhaps, for just a little while, the Palin/Tea Party/Fox News shouters will tone it down, and if we are really, really lucky, some quiet logic will enter the scene.

But it won’t last. Loud music sells. Hatred sells. Extremism sells. There always will be another Sarah Palin, and another Tea Party (aka Know Nothing Party) and another Fox News (aka Hearst newspapers), another Joe McCarthy, another Orval Faubus, another Hitler. There always will be those who inflame and those who follow.

Demagoguery is in our genes. It isn’t Sarah’s fault. It’s what we are. Don’t look around in innocence and wonder, “Why?” You are the reason.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

No nation can tax itself into prosperity. Those who say the stimulus “didn’t work” remind me of the guy whose house is on fire. A neighbor runs with a garden hose and starts spraying, but the fire continues. The neighbor wants to call the fire department, which would bring the big hoses, but the guy says, “Don’t call. As you can see, water doesn’t put out fires.”

10 thoughts on “–It isn’t Sarah’s fault.

  1. WTF does this have to do with Palin, FOX, etc. Rodger? This whole thing is a manufactured joke and you try an appear to be reasonable while swallowing it whole. Why not make it about the Daily Kos? Was the Daily Kos at fault would be the much more appropriate title.

    Giffords was a conservative Dem who supports gun rights, voted against Pelosi, and read the constitution along with the GOP. These actions caused the Daily Kos to claim she was “dead” to them a day before the shooting. The facts on the ground now are that he is a pot smoking leftist.


    The Daily Kos targeted her as well and guess what, this loser was a left wing pot smoking radical: http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/valleyfever/2011/01/jared_loughner_alleged_shooter.php

    Lastly, the graphics and language that Palin uses are used by all sides all the time. Take a look for yourself:



  2. Trial by Ordeal: originally meant, in Germanic (Barbaric) Law that you won if you gathered lots of people and had them out-shout the other side. Thus you proved the gods favored you. Sound like America’s ordeal today?

    When the legal Code of Justinian (Roman/Byzantine Emperor) was rediscovered around 1000 or so on Papal Lands, the Pope took possession and started a university system (still running, secularized) to teach this Code, Medicine and the old Roman Liberal Arts. But before teaching the Code the Pope and his advisors decided to distill the principles from the Code rather than just follow its rules exactly. These principles were extracted to allow innovation and flexible rulings. The Roman Code also contained rules of evidence.

    The first thing the newly minted priests/lawyers did was to write down all existing legal codes in Europe, as a first step in bringing them under a national/royal code. Among the codes were the Barbaric, the Manorial, and various ducal and other lordly codes.

    Interestingly under many Manorial Codes the serfs had rights, and could even sue their lords (and sometimes win). No other feudal system in the world granted rights to serfs. These rights largely devolved from the vast manors controlled by Benedictine monks, whose rules were based on those of the old self-governing Roman city states. The monks believed that the serfs had souls, were therefore human, and therefore deserved dignity and rights, despite their servitude.

    To learn more read “Law and Revolution” by Harold Berman, a Harvard Law professor.


    1. Without debating the merits of gun control, I can say this: “Prohibition for Guns” won’t work, at least not at the buyer level. People will get what they want.

      What will work? Laws making gun and/or bullet manufacturers liable for crimes committed with their products — something like a tavern’s liability for the acts of someone who got drunk in their establishment.

      Rodger Malcolm Mitchell


  3. Rodger I want you to point to one FACT that links this crazy killer to anything related on the right wing or Palin. It is very simple. Not a future fact but a fact as we know it know. What I understand is he had a 3-4 year obsession with her, that his friend characterized him as liberal, that his parting youtube video is crazy, and that he lists a youtube video of a flag burning as a favorite. None of these fts the narrative of tea party or Palin. What facts do you have otherwise?


    1. No, Sarah didn’t direct him to go on a shooting spree. Yet, the world makes the same connection. See: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/09/AR2011010902680.html?wpisrc=nl_most

      “Don’t Retreat, Instead – RELOAD!” is like yelling “Fire!” in a theater. It hardly could be considered a bland, innocent statement.

      As you said, the man was a nut for several years. So what was the trigger that set him off? Was it Sarah? Was it the Tea Party? I don’t know. But the angry, gun-nut attitude could have been the precipitant.


      1. Weak tea my friend. How about we ban all military metaphors from the political lexicon. Battleground state, nuclear option, war on the ground, campaign, hand to hand combat (courtesy of Obama recently).

        Or we could just blame the Jews…you get my point.


  4. Thankfully, this nation does not prevent idiots from spouting idiocy. Thus, Glenn Beck. The fault lies with the people who believe the idiocy.

    So long as there are sufficient slack-jawed, drooling, pitchfork-wielding followers, we will have rabble-rousers, liberal, conservative, communist, fascist, religious — everything you can name.

    It just happens that today, the idiot prize goes to the Guns ‘n’ God groups. Tomorrow, who knows, it may be the vegetarians.

    Rodger Malcolm Mitchell


  5. Washington Post, 1/14/11:

    Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin is scheduled to deliver the keynote address at the Safari Club International (SCI) gun convention on Jan. 29. According to the organization’s Web site, the event is sold out.



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