Meet Jared Loughner

This is the rather bizarre mugshot of Jared Loughner that was released yesterday afternoon. He has been assigned lawyer Judy Clarke, who defended the Unabomber.

One of the more interesting facts to emerge is that Loughner was expelled from his community college after complaints from classmates that he seemed on the edge of violence.

In the meantime, the Sheriff is being attacked for criticizing right-wing commentators for their over-the-top rhetoric, including conservative icon, Rush Limbaugh. Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik stated “The kind of rhetoric that flows from people like Rush Limbaugh, in my judgment he is irresponsible, uses partial information, sometimes wrong information. . . [Limbaugh] attacks people, angers them against government, angers them against elected officials and that kind of behavior in my opinion is not without consequences.” [Update: Limbaugh has reportedly fired back by saying that the Democratic Party supports Loughner and is “attempting to find anybody but him to blame.” Wasn’t he supposed to be Costa Rica?] Reportedly near the scene of the shooting is this billboard:

Sarah Palin is also being criticized for putting a bullseye over Giffords’s district as someone she has “set her sights on” for defeat:

Notably, Palin was previously associated with threats against the President by the Secret Service, here.

Gifford’s husband has also blamed inflammatory rhetoric for the shooting.

For its part, the Brady Campaign, may the following point in a statement from Paul Helmke, President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence:

“The 22 year-old shooter in Tucson was not allowed to enlist in the military, was asked to leave school, and was considered “very disturbed” (according to former classmates), but that’s not enough to keep someone from legally buying as many guns as they want in America.” For the full statement, click here

One of the more worrisome (and predictable) developments is the proposal of legislation to further criminalize speech, here.

201 thoughts on “Meet Jared Loughner”

  1. There is a history of hate speech in America.

    We have seen this before many times.

    “I tell people don’t kill all the liberals. Leave enough so we can have two on every campus-living fossils- so we will never forget what these people stood for.”
    Rush Limbaugh

    Add those words to this billboard advertising Rush Limbaugh with a giant picture of a gunshot-looming over the city of Tucson

    Advertising works. Huge industries make millions putting together words and images to influence the behavior of people.
    We have, these days, a “Hatestream Media” going 24/7 365.

    It was only a matter of time in Arizona. We have all the old John Birch hate groups down here in their current incantation.

    I am not at all surprised the shooter bought the gun in November. We had just endured months of terrifying commercials thanks to Citizens United. The media market was flooded with these horrific advertisements about the election. It was enough to drive a sane person to msdness!

    What Sheriff Dupnik is describing is the effect on a local populace of unlimited anonymous advertising dollars. Millions and millions of dollars. Terrifying and menacing music, words and images. 24/7 for months here in Arizona.

  2. Re: the mugshot.

    This could be a picture with the title “MegaMillions Lottery Winner” and everyone would think it was fine. Context is everything.

  3. BLL,

    Philosophical contrast exists, so I, as a Doctor of Philosophy, note.

    Philosophical differences happen among different individual persons, so I, as a Doctor of Philosophy, note.

    I have a weltanschauung.

    I understand all people, as individuals, have a weltanschauung.

    I understand you to be a person.

    I understand you may have a weltanschauung.

    I understand that, if you have no weltanschauung, having no weltanschauung is your weltanschauung.

    I make mistakes because of misunderstanding or otherwise.

    I work at avoiding hurting people by mistake.

    My weltanschauung is not your weltanschauung.

    Your weltanschauung is not my weltanschauung.

    My life experiences are not your life experiences.

    Your life experiences are not my life experiences.

    You and I are not one and the same person.

    I understand that you are a member of the bar.

    I know that I am not a member of the bar.

    I am a Wisconsin Registered Professional Engineer.

    I do not know whether or not you are a Wisconsin Registered Professional Engineer.

    I work as a Registered Professional Engineer in accord with the Code of Ethics of the National Society of Professional Engineers.

    I do not know the details of your the Code of Ethics.

    I need to be competent in my work as an engineer.

    I need not be competent in the work of a member of the bar.

    I design apparatus, when I design it, so it is as easy for people to use as is practicable.

    I find the law, which by law, it appears to me I am required to know and obey, is impossible for me to know or obey except as an exercise of the happenstance of chance, because I can find no lawyer who can tell me how to live my life, doing the ordinary activities of daily living, while being absolutely certain that I will never be in violation of any law; as an engineer, I find the design of the law to be as though designed to be impossible for me to use in practicable daily practice.

    In my weltanschauung, no one is required to do what is, within the moment when it is done, observably impossible, and no one is punishable for failure to have done what is found, after the fact, to have directly observably actually been impossible during the fact.

    In my weltanschauung, the choices/decisions/actions people make are the ones their total situation, including uncertainty and indeterminancy, both allows and requires them to make.

    In my weltanschauung, prejudice and retrospective prejudice are invalid.

    I know and understand my weltanschauung.

    I do not know your weltanschauung.

    From your words, I find that I neither know nor understand your weltanschauung, and the only mental model I can make regarding your weltanschauung absurdly has it as though of a universe with which I seem unable to find any connection whatsoever.

    I seek friendship, though I have trouble with words and the way words work. I have learned, over more than seventy years, that, for me, to be misunderstood is far more likely than to be understood. Words are like that for me. They have always been like that for me.

    I love life and I love people, and I love friendship.

    That which I subjectively experience as hurtful saddens me.

  4. Brian,

    I think you’re full of crap. And that has nothing to do with autism. It has to do with repeated factual inaccuracies in your statements. As most autistics have trouble lying, it’s not necessarily your fault, but factually wrong is factually wrong. So instead of not addressing your inaccuracies – like your previous seeming desire to address the issue of psychopaths and sociopaths by ignoring them or insisting that “adversarial” and “contentious” are synonymous – I address your behavior directly. Thinking that adversarial process primarily creates contention and conflict is simply factually wrong. Adversarial process is a process of finding facts and reaching an equitable and just solution. It isn’t necessarily perfect in application, but it does work. People, most of whom are not autistic, are contentious by nature. Contention breeds conflict. Conflict can be handled in one of three ways: walk away (which most simply will not do), direct attack/self-help, or seeking resolution through a mediating and/or adjudicative process – the adversarial process.

    You want to learn the language of lawyers?

    You better learn that lesson first.

  5. From TPM (1/12/2011)
    Due To Arizona Conflicts, California Judge Takes Over Loughner Case

    U.S. District Court Judge for the Southern District of California Larry A. Burns will handle the case against Jared Lee Loughner, the alleged gunman behind the mass shooting on Saturday, according to documents filed with the court on Wednesday.

    All federal judges in Arizona have been conflicted out because U.S. District Judge John M. Roll was one of the six victims of the shooting.

    “Based upon the circumstances occurring on January 8, 2011 in Tucson and the initiation of proceedings in conjunction with them, the impartiality of the District and Magistrate Judges in the District of Arizona might reasonably be questioned,” wrote U.S. District Judge Roslyn O. Silver, who was just named as a replacement for Roll.

  6. RE: Buddha Is Laughing, January 12, 2011 at 12:23 am AND Buddha Is Laughing, January 12, 2011 at 1:17 am:

    I find that you have made it clear to me that the way I am autistic makes it virtually impossible for me to find words which allow my actual intended meaning to become understood by many other people. This has been true, as I have experienced it, since not so very long after I was born.

    My parents told me, when I was i grade school and later, that, as a baby, I did not cry nearly as much as most babies do. This was plausibly the first blatant sign of my being autistic.

    I am unable to successfully engage people in the repartee of verbal combat, for which I apologize. Having been on the receiving end of bullying and the like for decades, I decided to learn if I could learn something of utilitarian value by attempting to learn your way of language use and structure, the better for me to develop more viable communication skills.

    What I have learned for now, as I understand the lesson, is how to develop greater skill in avoiding communication people autistic in ways similar to the way I am autistic find to be of profoundly aversive experiences.

    Within your world view, I surmise it is impossible for a person such as me to exist; I may be very mistaken about this, though, for surmises are often very mistaken.

    Yet I also have a hunch that I may be working on getting a terribly important need met; for I have a conjecture that people whose world view resembles yours may be far from uncommon in the contemporary system of law and jurisprudence. My ability to remain a living person may be critically dependent on my learning strategies for connecting with law and law enforcement folks which leave me alive.

    Aspects of brain biology outside my willful control preclude my “seeing the world as most others see it.” That is not a choice I have ever made, it precedes my birth, and remains outside my locus of control.

    I set out to write a decently respectful reply to your two comments in the first RE: line of this comment; at about 2500 words, I had scarcely begun. Such a lengthy comment surely would be proper proximate cause for me to be forever banned from any and every blog or blawg there is or will be.

    I have never found fault with any person and have never blamed anyone for anything, that is a statement of fact. I have commonly been misunderstood as finding fault or blaming by people who find fault and blame and who engage in what I experience as delusional imago projection, something I also find myself to be incapable of doing.

    I expect every observable aspect of every event to be perfectly unique, and every event to be no less unique. Thus, I experience life as a stream of events and aspects of events, all absolutely unique, and patterns automatically form in my brain in response to this stream of uniquenesses.

    The patterns are not the events nor the aspects of the events, they are events which gather properties of other events into clusters of associations.

    Your Grouch quote says it well for me, the way word meanings dance in my life, “Time flies like an arrow and flies like a banana.”

    In working at finding a way to accomplish dialogue with you, my life is starting to go bananas.

    Perhaps it may help if you explore the possibility that what I write that does not meet your standards, expectations, wants, or needs simply was not written with you in mind, except perhaps when specifically addressed to one of your comments.

    The few times when other people have as though threatened me with physical danger have happened when I chose to not reciprocate in response to something the other persons have done which I experienced as harmful to someone.

    The predicament at which I am working is the predicament that may have been a proximate cause of the death of Dietrich Bonhöffer. He, as best I can guess, used the conventional method of extinguishing an undesired behavior by ignoring it.

    Sometimes ignoring an undesired behavior extinguishes it; sometimes ignoring an undesired behavior reinforces it; the difference seems to be in the interpretation of being ignored made by the one whose behavior is undesired.

    Jared Loughner, if I may speculate, may somehow have interpreted such experiences of people’s rejection of his behavior as came his way as reinforcers of his behavior, such that the intent of ignoring him in the hope of extinguishing his undesired behavior had the opposite effect with stunningly tragic effect.

    I seek to avoid doing here that which may lead to effects opposite to anything I could ever want, for want of being capable of using words well enough to not result in that which I would never want.

    I made an evidently very unsuccessful effort to find words to express my intended meanings which words would not lead to sadly awful misunderstandings.

    I have no “score” to settle.

    In the world in which I find I live, real strength is not ever needing to settle any sort of score.

  7. Mike S.

    I misunderstood, I thought you were illustrating tea party arguments rather than giving reasons why they are wrong.

  8. It was one person that turned out to be a cabbie. One, not group.
    How many times have you heard this. This is an ongoing investigation we have no further comment at this time?
    DUPE-nik in the middle of the, scratch that beginning of a VERY VERY important investigation offers a wide variety of excuses. Here we are 3-4 days later and we just find out that a wild life officer pulled Loughner over that morning for running a red light.

  9. Bdaman,

    I watched the video interview with Zach Osler. Osler said he hadn’t talked to Loughner in a couple of years. Maybe some things had changed in that time.

  10. Mike Appleton: “Mr. Loughner may be disconnected from reality, but his own web entries indicate that he has not been disconnected from the paranoid political fantasies constantly swirling about.”


    In terms of even a remote proximate cause, that’s really quite a stretch. And as tempting as it is to use this event as a jumping point for our respective philosophies regarding inflammatory rhetoric and the media, etc., the risk of surrendering reason to reaction is too great.

    As Mark so eloquently said above:

    “We know precious little about the gunman’s motivation and to assume that the current political vitriol is the culprit weakens the manifestly valid argument against it. It’s as if we must have a poster child to mount a challenge to the likes of Limbaugh and O’Reilly, et clowns.”

  11. Bdaman,

    Not wrong at the time. They did have suspect photos, but have apparently eliminated the man in question as an accomplice.

  12. Sheriff Dupnik told reporters that shooter Jared Loughner may not have acted alone. It was a group effort. There were others involved. “We have photos.”


  13. rafflaw,

    “She is the only part time politican I know that can use incendiary terms to try to claim she didn’t use incendiary language!”

    How true…how true.


    Mike S.

    It’s great to have you back commenting again!

    You wrote of Palin: “…although her actions and thought processes are always a mystery to me in the sense of ‘there’s no there….there.'”

    I agree. There is, however, a lot of “air” there.

  14. Thanks Mike S, ALOT, I trust your recovery is going well.

    This morning on “Good Morning America,” ABC’s Ashleigh Banfield sat down with Zach Osler, a high school friend of Jared Loughner, the suspect in the Tucson massacre.

    Osler says his friend wasn’t shooting at people, “he was shooting at the world.” Regarding the high-pitched talk radio and cable news political rhetoric, Osler says his friend didn’t even watch the news.

    He did not watch TV. He disliked the news. He didn’t listen to political radio. He didn’t take sides. He wasn’t on the left. He wasn’t on the right.

  15. Mike S.,
    You are on fire today! Well done. You are absolutely correct that Palin intended her ridiculous comments. She is the only part time politican I know that can use incendiary terms to try to claim she didn’t use incendiary language!
    You are not a communist. You are a caring human being that understands hypocrisy when you see it.

  16. “Am I wrong in understanding Palin’s usage of the term to be that of comparing the current unfounded association of political rhetoric to the Arizona shootings with the unfounded charges against Jews by anti-Semites?”

    I certainly take her remarks in that vein, although her actions and thought processes are always a mystery to me in the sense of “there’s no there….there.”

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