Lieberman Calls For Action On Violent Video Games After Connecticut Murders

121217-adamLanza-vsmall.380;380;7;70;0220px-joe_lieberman_official_portrait_2Yesterday, we discussed how various people have used the massacre in Connecticut to call for everything from gun control to new social programs and prayer in school. Now, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), a long advocate for censoring music and speech, added his own take: crackdown on violent video games. Lieberman described Adam Lanza of having a “hypnotic involvement” with the games and called on Congress to get involved.

Of course, it was not Lanza history of mental illness. Lieberman’s focus is on the games he played — the same games played by hundreds of millions of kids and adults who do not run to their local school to mow down students. However, Lieberman insists that “[v]ery often these young men have an almost hypnotic involvement in some form of violence in our entertainment culture – particularly violent video games. . . And then they obtain guns and become not just troubled young men but mass murderers.”

The basis for his concern with regard to Lanza? “Rumors” that he played the games. It was enough however to go to the floor of the Senate to call for yet another area of government regulation of speech and association.

Lieberman recognizes that the games seem to leave a surprising number of people in a non-murderous state, but that is just a fortunate side note: “Thank God, not all of them become murderers, but some of them do and we have to ask why.” I prefer to ask why we are talking about video games instead of the history of mental illness demonstrated by Lanza. And that is not even a rumor.

131 thoughts on “Lieberman Calls For Action On Violent Video Games After Connecticut Murders

  1. Just thought I would give a real time update at my grandsons Hugh School

    Police are at Montclair High School where students are being evacuated because of a bomb threat referencing the high school. According to Principal James Earle, a tweet that mentioned blowing up the high school was the reason for the evacuation. The tweet came out of discussion regarding rivalry between Bloomfield and Montclair. The tweet was brought to the attention of the school by a student and authorities were notified.
    Montclair High School sent this message at 2:30 p.m.
    Montclair High School has just announced a Non Fire Emergency Evacuation for both buildings of the high school. The evacuation was ordered by the Montclair Police Department and school officials after a threat against the school was discovered in a twitter message. An active investigation is in progress. Staff and students will remain outside in safe areas until the end of the school day or the all clear signal is given.
    Students are now being evacuated at Montclair High School because of the bomb threat, first reported by Breaking News Network:’

  2. Police fought for hours yesterday to control junior college students, who collected to protest “hanging out girls” on the internet. Accusations of whore, slut, round-heel were accompanied by pictures of the accused girls.

    The Junior College is closed today. 24 were arrested although no charges have been filed. The parents were asked to fetch their kids.

    Maybe it is the sixties all over again. Happened in Swedens second city, Gothenborg.

    Restraining gun use seems not to have crossed Lieberman’s mind.
    First of a long list of such congressional utterances.

    He hauls up the flag to see who will salute and be misled AGAIN.

    Guns quell free speech. Time to say: enough!

  3. I would like to know if this lanza fellow was on prescibed medication. I believe this knowledge will turn out to be pertinent and have yet to see this addressed in the media. Why is that?

  4. Although nature confirms MikeS affirmation that rushing a gunman is appropriate activity, this must be a last resort tactic. With no disrespect, I ask are we training Iranian Guards suicide troops in the war with Irak?

    Colonies of birds will exemplify. They do not sit quietly waiting to be picked by the carnivorous bird. At the first alarm signal, they fly and create a pandemonium which makes it harder to select and capture a prey.

    Such suggestions as hers put the responsibility on the children, not where is belongs.

  5. I am very conflicted on this issue of censorship of violent video games. On the one hand, decades of research have shown that viewing of violence on television and in movies has a de-sensitizing effect – that violence is more acceptable as a quick way to handle a problem, especially for children and the emotionally-vulnerable, in a culture that does not teach problem-solving skills and anger/impulsivity management. On the other hand, I don’t want laws to determine if anything creative is “too violent.” My wish would be that the culture would decide that it has had enough of violence in any such form as videos etc. and individually and collectively make it unavailable by no longer purchasing it and making it known that such content-viewing is considered socially unacceptable.

  6. jim2,

    Priorities is my guess. They first won’t to know if he had other buddies on the net with similar ideas. He trashed his PC, obviously for a purpose.

    But, they may be doing what you suggest also. Who knows. A pertinent question, with a view to the widespread drug use we have.

  7. I couldn’t agree more with Jim and the Senator. I strongly believe that the availability of guns is not the issue – nor will gun control fix the issue. The issue is the desensitization to violence that starts very early – because our entertainment – games, movies, television are all horrifically violent these days.

    With video games like “Grand Theft Auto” and movies like “Saw” — where horror and depravity in graphic detail abound, how can we expect anything different?

  8. I would go Holy Joe one better. The ‘problem’ is not addiction to violent computer games only, it’s addiction to computers. And THAT, my dear, is a problem of inadequate parenting, not government underregulating speech.

  9. Published on Tuesday, December 18, 2012 by Common Dreams

    The Only Antidote to More Newtowns
    by Robert Freeman

    We can be horrified at the Newtown massacre. We can be outraged. We can be indignant. But we can no longer honestly be surprised.

    The shootings in Connecticut are of the same ilk as the ones in Aurora, Portland, Virginia Tech, Columbine, and all the rest: a young man full of anger, weaponed up, with few connections, and nothing but despair in his heart.

    Until we start doing something differently with our young people, the only thing we can expect is more of the same.

    I am a high school teacher. I don’t know the pathologies of the shooter(s) or why they turned into mass murder. I do know something about young people, and what we might do to lessen this sickening epidemic.

    First, let’s be honest about one thing: our culture is utterly saturated in violence. It is everywhere, from our endless wars to the professional sports teams we root for to the cop shows we watch to the blockbuster movies we flock to. Short of living in a cave, it is impossible to escape. Especially for young men.

    Our boys live on video games where the hero is always the guy who can wreak the most havoc, inflict the most damage, expend the most rounds, kill the most bad guys. And despite all of our pious posturing, that is not likely to change.

    Nor are we likely to change the easy access to guns that make these mass murders possible. We allow corporate money in the hands of the NRA to “terminate” the careers of politicians who even hint at gun control. Not even the near-murder of a Congresswoman seems to have given a spine to the politicians.

    What we do have the power to change, however, is the culture in our schools where our young people learn the social sense of themselves. And the direction we’re going there is not reassuring.

    Since the start of the Great Recession, 23 states have cut their spending on education. Most others have increased class sizes, cut counselors, reduced or eliminated arts and music classes, and dumbed down curriculum in order to teach to the tests. It is the exact opposite of what we would do if we were trying to create nurturing places for young people.

    Worse, the charter movement that the Obama administration has backed with its deceptively named “Race to the Top” initiative aims to turn schools into profit making enterprises. The big charter companies want a piece of the $750 billion we spend each year on public education in the U.S.

    But the only way they can make money is by cutting salaries (the big expense in education) and pushing standardized, rote curriculum. You cut salaries by firing mature, seasoned teachers and hiring young, inexperienced, uncredentialed ones. You dumb down the curriculum by having all teachers teach the same thing on the same day in the same way, regardless of the needs of the students. Doesn’t one size fit all?

    Again, it is the exact opposite of what you would do if you valued students over profits. But hey, this is America. The Prime Directive is, “I’m getting mine, screw you.” There is nothing that cannot be debauched, nothing that cannot be made cheaper in pursuit of profit and cutting social services.

    The irony is that schools are probably the only institution in America from which we can mount a defense against the degrading dehumanization ladled up by the media. We need to create cultures in our schools where students learn not just the “Three R’s” but the “Three B’s” as well: Being, Belonging, and Becoming. Done well, these can help form an antidote to the meaninglessness, mayhem, and murder that, more and more, seem to be our destiny.

    What does this kind of culture look like?

    A sense of Being comes when we honor every single individual in our schools, every child among us. This is not a cheezy ritual of “student of the month,” but a deeply rooted respect for the uniqueness and dignity of each human being. It is only conveyed one person at a time, uniquely to each student, and only from someone a child respects.

    Those who want to replace seasoned teachers with low-cost room monitors, or dish out one-size-fits-all curriculum, send a powerful message to young people: you are not valued. You are a future factor of production, a product on an assembly line, that should be docile and obedient. And the students know this. They may not be able to articulate it as such, but they know. And the contempt reverberates for the rest of their lives.

    Then, a sense of Belonging comes when the student reciprocates the esteem his school has shown him in Being. He finds community—connections—in something bigger than himself, something that can act as a ballast when a life starts to wobble out of control. This is the ancient practice of binding the child to his community by investing in the child the community’s hopes and aspirations. It is dignifying the child with the profound truth that she holds the community’s future in her hands, so we need to be sure they are steady, compassionate, resilient, and wise.

    The African Bantu expression says it all: “Even the greatest waterfall starts with a single drop of water.” In a truly healthy society there are no free-floating individuals. Each is tethered to one another in a dense lattice of connections, shared values, shared visions, and shared aspirations. Rather than, “I’m getting mine, screw you,” the essential ethic is, “We’re all in this together.” It is not an accident that all of the shooters are loners. Neither should it be left to accident to ensure that every student is connected to something greater than themselves.

    Finally, there is Becoming. The greatest longing of every young person is to become a bigger person. Not physically, but in terms of their capacity to move in the world. They want to be competent, effective, respected. Don’t we all? But these traits are not endowed by naming them. Rather, they are imbued, inculcated, cultivated, over years of schooling, by providing students the means to prove to themselves that they are, indeed, worthy of the competence and the respect that they all so deeply long for.

    Every lesson, in every subject, is an opportunity for the student to demonstrate mastery—of himself. And when this capacity for self-mastery catches, the subject matter comes along for free. The students get far more energized showing themselves who they can be than they do showing their teachers what they know. And until the students can do that—show themselves the bigger Self they all long to be—everything else is just busy work and a pat on the head.

    Close-knit communities used to perform these essential functions of cultivating social maturity in their young people. But we’ve lost that capacity for stewardship of our most important asset. We have surrendered it for the fool’s gold of a metastic individualism, a predatory nationalism, the fruitless search for meaning in money, the vapid titillation of an entertainment society, the shallow idols of a celebrity culture.

    And the only place where we can possibly reclaim it is in our schools.

    Our choices here are really quite stark. We can rail at the insanity of it all, but that changes nothing. We can break our picks on the impregnable rocks of coin-operated media and political cultures. Or we can take immediate, effective action in every classroom, every school, every neighborhood in the country, creating the cultures that build bigger people, and the people who can bring forth a better world.

    And no one should have any illusions that this will be easy. There are no “just add water” recipes for how to create a culture that shows children they are esteemed. If there were, it wouldn’t be such a prized cultural possession. We can only know this: a culture that cannot, will not, provide for the deep nurturing of its young is doomed. That is where we’re headed.

    The great German poet, Rainer Maria Rilke wrote once, “The future comes to us, and enters into us, in order to change itself, through us.” The future that we want to become, the one we are so panicked to see slipping away from us, is calling us. Can we possibly have the ears to hear? Can we possibly find the courage to act?

    © 2012 Common Dreams

  10. Hey Jim, Eric! With respect, do your views that “it’s the medication!” and “it’s the desensitization to violence” mean you think we ought not impose serious regulation of the guns, clips and ammo involved? Thought so.

  11. Many of these games are highly sophisticated and provide tactical skills that are practiced in very realistic, violent simulation. That’s why our military uses them.

  12. puzzling 1, December 18, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    Many of these games are highly sophisticated and provide tactical skills that are practiced in very realistic, violent simulation. That’s why our military uses them.
    That is why “our” military fosters, promotes, and finances them.

  13. It’s not the mental illness, it’s the treatment. (Nearly?) every mass shooter has been on psychotropic drugs.

    Guns need some regulation as well.

  14. bettykath 1, December 18, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    It’s not the mental illness, it’s the treatment. (Nearly?) every mass shooter has been on psychotropic drugs.

    Guns need some regulation as well.
    Our minds need regulation … beginning with those in power … something that has been known for a long time.

    Think about it.

    If the puppy faced species Lieberman would stop humpin’ the turtle faced McConnell … anyway …

    God wanted us to be naked.

    We rebelled.

    Know what I’m sayin’ …. ???

  15. Shades of Tipper Gore. This call to limit, control violence whether in movies, song lyrics, or games is nothing new, and seemingly always fails the “correlation-causation” test. Gore and Lieberman both draw from that “worst of Americana”. Perspective, people, perspective.

    I notice there’s another call to ban “assault weapons” in Congress. The only way a Bushmaster .223 is an “assault weapon” is the pistol grip. It’s a semi-automatic, like the M-1 (an antiquated weapon best left to parade and museums), and like most guns sold today, such as the Glock .40 loved by Police departments. Personally, if it isn’t capable by manufacture of being fully automatic it isn’t an assault weapon, the term being derived from military-use weapons which have been fully automatic for most of my life.

    If you really want to stop this, go for a society of strict social controls on all levels (including no adults called by their first names by children, Sir and Mam, or Miss by all of us). Conformity over all else.

    Locking up and treating all the DSM candidates may work also, this kid and Loughner being the latest examples. Most of our mass killings in the US are directly related to mental illness.

    Or you could realize that a heterogenous society has issues, especially one that vacillates between police state and embracing liberties and freedoms. I just heard on the radio that Congress is going after gun shows now. These guns were obtained legally, his mother a target-shooter, so none of these laws will actually address the problem. But we must do something, so something is better than nothing…

    If you want the worst mass killing of children, look up Bath circa 1927.

  16. Ariel 1, December 18, 2012 at 4:43 pm

    Shades of Tipper Gore. This call to limit, control violence …
    Yeah, and the Ariel Gore who want unlimited violence.

    Gosh … tuff choice for ya?

  17. Yesterday, the retiring senator of 24 years declared (with a straight face) that it may be time for term limits.

    I won’t miss him.

  18. let’s ‘ConnectTheBlots’ in Connecticut:
    amphetamines, Antidepressants, barbituates, CCHR, Dexedrine, effexor, lexapro, Newtown, CT, paxil, prozac, psychiatric drugs, Remeron,
    Sen. Feinstein, tranquilizers, valium, wellbutrin, zoloft

    Who Stands to Gain by Withholding this Info?
    Alexandra Bruce
    December 17, 2012

    As Senator Feinstein prepares to introduce a gun control bill in 2013, any reporter seeking to discover
    what medications were being taken
    by the alleged shooter in the Newtown massacre
    will find that they cannot get this information, by law.

    One must assume the shooter was on psychiatric drugs
    for what had been described as “anti-social” behavior,
    on his being “slightly handicapped”
    and suffering from Asperger’s Sydrome, a form of autism.
    Nowhere, will you find any comments about the drugs
    prescribed to the shooter. Nothing except the guns as the problem.

    Who stands to gain by withholding this info?
    The drug manufacturers, of course – certainly, not the public.
    July 23, 2012

    This video highlights the link between psychiatric drugs and acts of senseless violence, including nearly all recent mass-shootings and school shootings.

    This video is a chapter from the full documentary ‘Psychiatry’s Prescription for Violence’ which was originally produced and released by Citizen’s Commission on Human Rights (CCHR), an activist branch of the Church of Scientology that campaigns against psychiatry and psychiatric drugs.


    When violent shootings take place,
    honest journalists are forced to ask the question:
    “Does this fit the pattern of other staged shootings?”
    “Is there a mysterious ‘second suspect’
    that disappears from coverage?”
    “Is the shooter mentally disabled and under mind control?”
    “Did the feds take over the investigation from the local police?”
    “Was this a false flag?”
    “Who benefits?”
    Apparently we have no honest journalists.

  19. I find myself asking, when there is a concerted effort to attribute THE cause to any one factor, is this an attempt at a legitimate public service, or is their a primary agenda, to deflect attention from other important contributing factors. Can’t help it, guess I’m just a skeptic.

  20. “Thank God that not everybody that drives runs someone over, but some of them do and we have to ask why.”
    “Thank God that not everybody that drinks goes drinking and driving and ends up killing people, but some of them do and we have to ask why.”
    “Thank God that not every fireplace burns down a house and kills families, but some of them do and we have to ask why.”

    And so on and so on.

  21. DonS – Its interesting that you asked and answered your own question. Like many in this country, you “assume” that anyone who has a different opinion must be “one of them”. Personally, I am not opposed to regulating access to guns – we regulate driving cars, drinking alcohol, and smoking tobacco.

    My point was that regulating guns would not have prevented this tragic occurrence and we should not politicize it. The guns were purchased legally, Conn has an assault weapons ban but the gun in question was not an assault weapon. Further, studies have shown that the federal ban on assault weapons did not reduce gun violence.

    As several folks have mentioned on this board – I believe it is our society’s complete embrace and glorification of horrific and graphic violence that leads to this type of event. If you have ever seen any of the “Grand Theft Auto” games – or the “Saw” movies, you should understand this.

  22. dobie606, Most folks don’t remember the spate of lawsuits regarding prozac back in the 80’s/90’s. I remember well because I worked several lawsuits involving suicides. I agree w/ Nal, but there is also a lot of “Look @ the shiney guns” being yelled by the RX industry. And..they throw around more lobby $ in one week than the video and gun lobby do in one year. It’s a sadistic, shell game going on right now. Be skeptical of all lobby groups and pols in the near future.

  23. From Harriet Hall at Science-Based Medicine:


    Szasz and Scientology (a marriage made in heaven?) joined forces to create the Citizens Commission on Human Rights. They have a slick website with a home page that proclaims its bias with a picture of a door labeled “Psychiatry: An Industry of Death.” They claim to be supporting human rights, but they appear to be engaged in a vendetta against psychiatry and psychotropic medicines. They do have some good points, but they go way overboard. And they systematically ignore any evidence showing that psychiatric care benefits patients.

    A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine helps bring several controversial psychiatric issues into focus.

    This study is not perfect and can’t stand by itself, but it confirms previous studies showing that psychotherapy and SSRIs are both effective and the combination is even more effective.

  24. Ding ding ding! Not saying this is connected to Holy Joe’s message, just saying (via Kos):

    “Sources close to the issue tell Fox News that the National Rifle Association — which has remained silent since the shooting, chiefly to allow for a proper period for mourning — will soon start to “push back” against the gun-control lobby.

    “If we’re going to have a conversation, then let’s have a comprehensive conversation,” said one industry source. “If we’re going to talk about the Second Amendment, then let’s also talk about the First Amendment, and Hollywood, and the video games that teach young kids how to shoot heads.

    “If you really want to stop incidents like this,” the source continued, “passing one more law is not going to do a damn thing. Columbine happened when? In 1999. Smack in the middle of the original assault-weapons ban.”

    So is Holy Joe sending mixed messages? It’s clear, re video games, he is sending a strong call for ACTION. With Chris Wallace he calls for “a national commission”, comes down hard on mental illness, trots out rehashes of his old gun position, but most heavily lambastes the video game/entertainment industry. It’s almost like video games! mental health! and, oh yeah, “I think we ought to restore that assault weapons ban, because, not to take anybody’s guns away from them, they have now.” . . . because who knows how long it will be before the vaunted national commission publishes an interim then final report, and the political (lobbying) process has to digest it all. And that’s hard work. (snark alert)


    Colt Arms Company, Hartford Connecticut. Just a coincidence. Maybe.

  25. DonS,

    Some can’t read, not you I hasten to add. Someone blamed you for pointing at one cause to the tragedy. In fact, you said that there were several. Some read what is there, others only what they think is there.

  26. Want a weird idea.? Want to do something, but don’t know how?
    This idea will get you activated everyday to do something in remembrance of Newtown and their fallen and stricken. Guaranteed.

    There is a RCC sect that the members regularly use an apparatus, around the buttocks, applying a scarification and pain as penance.

    Get one of those. Let us know how it works for just you.

  27. Eric, sorry if I wrongly ascribed motives. I agree that the culture of violence and aggression is out of control with multiple factors to blame. My gut tells me we can do a much better job of regulating access to guns, especially keeping them out of kid’s hands. As to politicizing, I’m not sure I agree; that’s how things seem to get done — certainly for the worse — why not for the better?

  28. What nal said about demonizing psychopharmacology. God knows I criticize that industry, but lumping all psych meds and all prescribing in one ball is way over the edge.

    And what nick S said as well . . .

  29. Most of you seem aware that every guilty party: whether it is gun sellers, non-regulating politicians, Big drugs, Big psychotherapy, no taxes for psychotherapy, etc. etc—-the list is long and includes us and our fascination with violence. But each and everyone of us has realized that each “dealer” in death will be looking to keep his profit stream unaffected.

    There will be investigations launched, and reports generated when the heat dies down. There will be token legislation, token programs with fine sounding names (Race to the Bottom?), ad infinitum. It will require unusual perseverance by the public to drive something meaningful through the maze of lobby groups, corporations, bought pols, etc

    Do we have the fortitude to do it? There can’t be many here who don’t realize what a prominent blogger here has said several times.
    Short of a revolution, it will take a huge effort to take this country back to a semblance of democracy. You know democracy? That we had when we lived in caves with our families and fellow hunters nearby.

    Another has said that it is that or serfdom.

    Or look at Dredd’s video again.

    Violence, that’s football, instead of gymnastics or health sports. The worst sorts you can ask your grandkids about.

    It is up to you. Nobody can or will do it for us.

    There will be Liebermans who will declare their fealty to Conn’s hunters and is against violent games. Ha! Followed by a long chain of false prophets, all bought or nutty themselves.

    Choose! It is the last chance.

    Send a letter to your congressman, asking Boehner to get off the stage. We are tired of him and his millionaires.

  30. Dredd,

    Making stuff up. “Yeah, and the Ariel Gore who want unlimited violence.
    Gosh … tuff choice for ya?”

    At least, in an obscure way, you acknowledge the Gore-Lieberman connection. Bravo for one moment of reason.

    One of the reasons I can’t hate religious people is that I see others make the same extreme leaps of logic like you typifying my comment as “who want unlimited violence…Gosh…tuff choice for ya?” In substance and methodology, it’s no different. Religious people and secular people are still subject to flights of fantasy and hysterics. You aren’t any different.

    My wife has this friend that pisses her pants when she sees a gun, total hysterics, so I fear to tell her what I could do with a baseball bat….yet neither lying on a table represent a danger to her. Still, she pisses her pants over the gun…

    Unlimited violence, no, except in your troubled mind, and really your leap lends well to that assessment (in more frank terms, are you that effed up to think that’s what I meant when I went to the cultural issues?). The calls now for more laws, especially like the “assault weapon” ban or “gun show”, have absolutely nothing to do with this case and would have not stopped it whatsoever. They are examples of the hysterical “we must do something, because we must do something”. We have laws on the books covering everything this kid did, including stealing the weapons from his mother, yet they didn’t stop him. If laws stopped this behavior, the behavior would have stopped long ago.

    Get a grip on reality and understand that gun laws in the US won’t stop this behavior. I so await and anticipate responses (leave out the UK, Australia, or NZ).

    Again, the worst mass killing of children was Bath, 1927. A much more gentile time.

  31. Idealist707,

    How would you explain Anders Behring Breivik, and how could any laws in Norway stop him? He certainly killed more than the 26 at Sandy Hook, so is Norwegian society sick, are their laws insufficient, or is it BTW of a gun culture?

    The USA is the third most populous nation, Norway the 118th. Yet the greatest mass killing in the last 10 years was in Norway. Shouldn’t you spend your time on what is wrong with Norway? Was it an anomaly, or a portent of what will come? Is Norway the sickest nation now? What laws did they fail to pass that would have stopped ABB? Really, lay them out in detail; obviously Norway failed in having enough laws to stop him.

    This is a total non sequitur: ” Most of you seem aware that every guilty party: whether it is gun sellers, non-regulating politicians, Big drugs, Big psychotherapy, no taxes for psychotherapy, etc. etc—-the list is long and includes us and our fascination with violence. But each and everyone of us has realized that each “dealer” in death will be looking to keep his profit stream unaffected.” Could you put anymore mind-numbing shibboleths into one sentence? (I use Merriam-Webster.)

    Let’s say you’re right, so let’s shut down each group now. Permanently. But especially, and with fervor, no new drugs, no new insights in psychotherapy (I’m assuming you mean psychologists and psychiatrists, please correct me if you don’t), and however long your list. All are about, and only about, keeping their profit stream unaffected; my doctor talks to me all the time about how he can make me sicker so I’ll keep coming back. Dealers in death most certainly.

    Don’t wrap all your prejudices around this one event. Doing so won’t even rise to the occasion of a “loose mind”, not even “no mind”.

  32. If any of you missed it, my thrust was the American tendency to forget what happened even a decade or so ago. Tipper Gore, and really you think Al ignored his wife, went after violence in lyrics in music, yet that is somehow different from Lieberman and video games?

    You want to repeat history, be my guest.

  33. Eric,
    “My point was that regulating guns would not have prevented this tragic occurrence and we should not politicize it. The guns were purchased legally, Conn has an assault weapons ban but the gun in question was not an assault weapon. Further, studies have shown that the federal ban on assault weapons did not reduce gun violence.”

    Nice point avoiding all the hysterics.

  34. As an aside and a point to ponder: if sex-education in this country helps children to make responsible decisions about sex into adulthood, why wouldn’t gun-education do the same? Why shouldn’t that be a required course in middle school and High School?

    I’ve repeatedly drilled into my children’s heads the proper handling a gun, the use of a gun, and the ramifications of using it well or poorly. Why, in this 2nd Amendment nation, don’t we do it in the schools? What, you teach them about it and they’ll do it more?

  35. Ol’ Joe is welcome to his opinion but I’m with Roger Ebert:

    The original link to BoingBoing doesn’t work for me (can’t now log on to BoingBoing at all for the last 24 hours).

    There’s a lot of blame to go around and the same players are brought up every time there’s a mass killing: games/movies, god (or lack thereof), mental illness. Still, a Venn diagram of things like ‘insane man/boy + guns’; ‘Godless, angry man/boy + guns’; ‘Violence de-sensitized (by games/movies) man/boy + guns’, seems to overlap with ‘guns’. Joe is barking up the wrong tree. Attention to first principles would have him look at guns, specifically the kinds and availability, first. But Joe is a politician to the bone and he knows who has the biggest and most powerful lobby of the players he could be looking at.

  36. i will be glad when Lieberman is out of Congress. I hope he does not get a job on some tv talk show. I saw his farewell speech to an empty hall on CSPAN. I am sick of this guy. He is sort of a secular preacher. I hope he does not have a dog that has to listen to him 24/7 when he is retired.

  37. Lieberman represented a state that was very much at the heart of the firearms business, so his embrace of “video games” is understandable even without the moronic “hypnotic” rhetoric. this is the same guy who wants to term limit Seanators having done as much damage to teh Republic as possible in his 24 years at the well. The chat shows and the MSM love this guy but thank God no one else will have to take him seriously, anymore.

  38. looks like all the right wingers who’ve been saying obama’s coming to get your guns for the last couple of elections may be getting their wish.

    OMG i’ve got it

    the president did this as a false flag operation
    as a pretext so he could go after real amerikan’s guns

    ha, i knew it. it’s that chicago politics again.


  39. Joe Liberman, what a disappointment. Why the people of CT continued to send him to the Senate is beyond me. Out of touch and so committed to the right wing story that cannot see the guns and the havoc they create.

  40. Feed society a truck load of violence in all its forms year on year then give the unstable ones access to automatic firearms and wonder why you have a problem.

    Of course the unstable ones had access to a smorgasboard of firearms 40- 50 yrs ago and the same mass tragedies occurred and at the same frequency did they not? Oh wait. No they didn’t.

    But, hell, we are a much more progressive and sophisticated society now with less crime and fewer people jailed. Oh wait. That’s not correct.

  41. Ariel said:
    “Ariel1, December 18, 2012 at 8:36 pm


    How would you explain Anders Behring Breivik, and how could any laws in Norway stop him? He certainly killed more than the 26 at Sandy Hook, so is Norwegian society sick, are their laws insufficient, or is it BTW of a gun culture?

    I don’t, they don’t, it is the results of a deranged man in a peaceful society. Blame the American influence is my feeling.. Breivik was interested in creating a name for himself and for his lonesome cowboy movement (he could not even make the grade with the other fascists there.
    All societies are sick due to violence. See my post of Swedish newspaper editorial expressing sorrow and frustration over the Swedes let the same violence culture take over here. And where did that culture come from, not from any country but the USA. Don’t try to weasel out when the world regards (ie the people) you as the world’s most dangerous terrorists.

    The USA is the third most populous nation, Norway the 118th. Yet the greatest mass killing in the last 10 years was in Norway. Shouldn’t you spend your time on what is wrong with Norway? Was it an anomaly, or a portent of what will come? Is Norway the sickest nation now? What laws did they fail to pass that would have stopped ABB? Really, lay them out in detail; obviously Norway failed in having enough laws to stop him.

    Norway in common with most nations has inadequate psych facilities.
    Here in Sweden, routinely those needing ER psych help are given a days help and released to the streets. No treatment facility has room for them. ´Norway nor we have not seen this change in the world society (with internet sicknesses spread fast). And as to laying it out in detail, I suggest you start with your own. The culture is still so simple in our Nordic lands that people still find it relaxing to come to a low-stress land, where no opinions are so irritating as to cause fights, much less murder. There is lively dissent, but Swedish politicians CAN compromise, as can the Swedes themselves

    This is a total non sequitur: ” Most of you seem aware that every guilty party: whether it is gun sellers, non-regulating politicians, Big drugs, Big psychotherapy, no taxes for psychotherapy, etc. etc—-the list is long and includes us and our fascination with violence. But each and everyone of us has realized that each “dealer” in death will be looking to keep his profit stream unaffected.” Could you put anymore mind-numbing shibboleths into one sentence? (I use Merriam-Webster.)

    I hear you firing, but don’t know what you are aiming at. Please clarify by explaining what non-sequiturs and shibboleths you have detected. I simply made a list (my choice) of the merchants of death who are advantaged by this violent culture. I thought that a shibboleth was a passphrase to sort the enemy from tribesman.

    Let’s say you’re right, so let’s shut down each group now. Permanently. But especially, and with fervor, no new drugs, no new insights in psychotherapy (I’m assuming you mean psychologists and psychiatrists, please correct me if you don’t), and however long your list. All are about, and only about, keeping their profit stream unaffected; my doctor talks to me all the time about how he can make me sicker so I’ll keep coming back. Dealers in death most certainly.

    I have not offered any solution, only areas which need to be examined for their contribution to our sick society. Who and what needs to be changed is your problem. How and if you solve them will be top news around the world. I trust my doctor too, whatever that has to do with it. But he is an employee and not heading a large medical racket.
    There are both private clinics, private practices and extremely good public hospitals. I just spent 5 days in one for an arythmi. I would not suggest that you part with yours, of course. But a viewing suggests that many life necessary functions in your society need examining, which many have already done in various studies.. And that is ALL parts of the medical system. insurance, caregivers, drugs as a cure for mental problems. A society where people at JTs banter the name of popular psychotropic drug names is a sick society.

    Don’t wrap all your prejudices around this one event. Doing so won’t even rise to the occasion of a “loose mind”, not even “no mind”.

    What you mean here is unclear. Please describe my prejudices.
    Your jibes as to my mental capacity is yours to expound. But I need no defense from that loose accusation.

    If you had had less anger and more willingness to discuss the substance, it would have been well. As it was, it was only a good exercise in handling angry diatribes/rants/attacks which have no purpose than to hurt. Had I stepped on your toes perhaps?

  42. Its nice to know that this useless waste of space will be irrelevant in a couple of weeks. I imagine the sunday blab fests will bring him in occasionally when they need a “Democrat” to say bad things about Democrats but that will dwindle rapidly to a well deserved obscurity.

    He is emblematic of how far a very small man can go in politics without a clue or an idea but the support of the wealthy and their enablers in todays media

  43. Memo to all those glad to see the back of Holy Joe:

    Hahaha, fooled ya. He’s never going away. That’s not his style, nor is it Obama’s, who keeps striving for the Nobel Prize for codependency. I mean if he could appoint Dana Perino, who has made a career out of knifing Obama, to a Federal commission? We’re all on the same team here, team America,by the force of my magical thinking, seems to be his motto.

    Anyway, I expect, and have predicted for a couple of years, that Holy Joe will next be featured and, in his self important way not let us forget it, as Ambassador to Israel (or, in his case, also of Israel. You read it here first, unless you read it somewhere else.😉

  44. Having cast themselves with the cement of cronyism, “campaign money”, dogma for the tribe, and skit for the people (enough for you)——
    the duopoly will hardly change. Joe Lieberman is an outstanding example of this. When you are bought, you stay bought or die.

    The most recent senatorial appointment confirms that renewal does not spring from within the party. I posted the news with the same theme previously. Now the NYTimes editorial side has gotten around to evaluating the situation. Note, he is the first black senator from the South since 1880.

    Op-Ed Contributor

    The Puzzle of Black Republicans


    Representative Tim Scott will become a South Carolina senator, but modern black Republicans have been more tokens than signs of progress.

  45. Regarding the above comment from Anonymous. There are going to be some who will argue the depth of his blackness since he is a RepubliCon and that party is no longer the party of Lincoln but is the party of Willard Romney et al. And if you dont know what et al is then you dont know nuthin bout birthin babies Miz Scarlet. This guy is not Richard Wright and he is not a black labrador like me.

  46. numerous news outlets are now reporting Lanza was taking the antipsychotic medication Fanapt which is reported to have severe side effects such as a increase in violence and aggression.

  47. Jim2,
    Good tip. Is it true. Meanwhile we can read more in our latest speculation game.
    Iloperidone – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia – Översätt den här sidan

    Iloperidone, also known as Fanapt, Fanapta, and previously known as Zomaril, is an atypical antipsychotic for the treatment of schizophrenia. It was approved by …

    Pharmacology – Laboratory studies – Clinical studies – Side effects

  48. Mass killings occur in USA once every two weeks

    Homicides and mass killings in the United States, 2006-10

    “About every two weeks in the United States, four or more people (not including the killer) die in a mass killing. Some get little media attention. As frequent as they are, however, mass killings make up only about 1% of the roughly 15,000 people murdered in the U.S. each year.”

  49. Researchers are hard at work in Canada on studies determining why this northern neighbor of the United States can play all these video games and not have massive numbers of mass shootings.

  50. Canadians are not as violent. And, while patriotic, they don’t go around thumping their chests about how great they are. They are not afflicted by exceptionalism, and all the excessive need to continually assert their dominance.

  51. There are reports that Adam Lanza was being medicated with Fanapt, an antipsychotic drug that sometimes does the opposite of what it is supposed to.
    From, side effects of the drug Fanapt:
    Psychiatric side effects including restlessness, aggression, and delusion have been reported frequently. Hostility, decreased libido, paranoia, anorgasmia, confusional state, mania, catatonia, mood swings, panic attack, obsessive-compulsive disorder, bulimia nervosa, delirium, polydipsia psychogenic, impulse-control disorder, and major depression have been reported infrequently.


  52. Rich, I don’t know this med, since it was not in broad use about the time I retired. But I would suggest, or suggest not to, read the possible side effects (no matter how statistically remote) included in the literature that accompanies most meds. Actually it’s so arcane and ridiculously complicated, that it’s probably less helpful than more.

  53. Let’s look at this pragmaticaly. How many violent video game programs are installed on teenagers’ hard drives of game consoles? Billions I would venture to say. How many murders were committed by teenagers for any reason? Several thousand? How many were directly related to video games(even if greatly exaggerated in whatever link is alleged)? Less than 5 maybe?

    So statistcally speaking, it is not even a measurable co-relation. Why is this the subject of legislation for something that is not even statistically relevant? 30,000 people die in the US every year in traffic collisions, is the Senator going to ask to end teenage driving as well?

  54. Rich and DonS,

    I’ll never consult Wiki about drugs again. They mentioned no neg psychiatric side effects at all. Will try

    All in-package medical informtion in Sweden is produced by a jointly owned drug company controlled to standards established by goverment..

    Looking at side-effects may console, but most often worry. But we would-be MDs and others may do so. Don’t be your own doctor, but keep an eye on him.

  55. Darren,

    Did you see my comment, saying to watch out for nominations to scapegoats? Especially the well-defended ones will be named by our pols.

    You don’t have personal motives, do you? :-)

  56. Did you hear the latest on Lieberman. In spite of his religion he insists on saying Lieberman uber alles. He insists also on holding his position in the Senate as Connecticut’s senator. Proof that not all Conn. citizens have good judgement. (who is the other senator?)

  57. ABOLISH Video games !!!!

    My Wife Works in the School System, for many, many years….
    Everyday these teenagers come to School in a STUPOR… and they go home in the same dead STUPOR!…I’m talking 90% of them!
    Why ? Because their up All Night (whether or Not you Know this!) Lack of Sleep! Not Good!
    Most of them are DUMBER than a ROCK!
    Give them a Test, and they are DUH ????
    Does this Promote Violence?….You Betcha!
    Don’t you See how most of them Talk and Act toward their Parents, and others ?
    No Respect !
    I Guess these kids will get a JOB as a ZOMBIE, cause thats the Only thing their proficient at !

    It seems that most of you People are Oblivious to how these Kids are behaving, and what you should be doing to better their Lives.
    Wake up, before more of these Senseless Murders continue to Fester !

  58. Wizard:

    “ABOLISH Video games !!!!”


    How about violent movies like “D-Day,” “Saving Private Ryan,” and “Excalibur.” I hit a midnight movie or two. Then we could move onto books like “The Iliad & the Odyssey,” “War & Peace,” and even the Bible. Those books kept me up at night, too. Let’s move onto art works like Picasso’s “Guernica” and Goya’s ” A Village Bullfight.”

    One can only hope your educator wife doesn’t share your view of censorship.

  59. Thanks, guys, for the mini-debate. Very worthy as to providing exhibits, and some logic, some abused. It was quite an experience.

    The trailer, was very instructive in showing the sales techniques used in a very short time. “Teen-aged” temptresses, yet older who used all her finger tricks to help us get the message, “strong language” in which only sorely repressed teens would find catharsis by hearing it, the slick “authority” guy, who finished off with a wink and some finger trick to show that he was cool and would not lead us wrong in our search for manhood.

    Reaching for proof in the pile of newspapers usually is a wise choice.
    Analyzing the perp is seldom the way to go. People are too complex as to motivations, and it is not all recorded. Good try at defending a major promotion method used in deforming our youth. That was not your intent, but the effect is the same. I was hoping that you would come requiring prior courses in analysis of such a film as Puzzling exhibited , as a prerequisite to viewing.

    You are one of the essentials of life today. The “embedded” reporter, who wears sound cups to avoid the din, but can’t help seeing and recording it for us. There are reports from studies etc. which support you.
    Teens don’t wake up before 9AM (cause not determined—on screen activity?) As to your other stuff, it has been proven time and again.
    From kids sassing adults, to following the herd as the only way to go as a teen. “How do I make myself different, but still be cool like the others?”

    Who finishes off with something the village logician would cover his face for.
    He compares films of (somewhat) living value and reality-based with clear pain shown and happiness—–with video games. And asks the question: Do we want to abolish them too? I would answer, knee jerk bill of rights defender that I am, orf course NOT.
    BUT, we do require labeling. And seem to lack a way to prevent works which do not fit the scale of being suitable for youth or young adults.

    So again, thanks to all, and that said with fullest respect for your rights to express yourself here. But we are all open for criticism here, even JT who occasionally lets a typo get by to the horror of the purists (of what type, I wonder?).

    I claim not to sit on a higher perch, not at all. I am humbler than the least of you, but free to use whatever little I have in my head.
    That is what free speech shines like this one are for, IMHO. Use it or lose it.

  60. I watched the trailer supplied by Puzzling. This is typically what you call a “shooter game” where the action takes place from the players eyeball perspective while you see a view of your weapon of choice for aiming. I remember playing the same style game in the 90’s called “Wolfenstein”. It seems all that has changed is the sophisticated detail of the animation an updated (though not much so) choice of weaponry. This game is a decidedly un-creative use of the latest technology and probably boring after awhile. I am against censorship of these games because of First Amendment issues, but also because there is no convincing proof that they lead to violence. Whenever tragedies such as these occur people will always find simplistic answers to them. In this instance we have a simplistic thinker, with ties to the industry via Colt, attempting to steer the discussion away from the gun rights issue. Pornography used to be banned because of its harmful effect on children, which was a cover for religious censorship. Protecting our children is the first refuge of those who want to ban something, even in this debate, that is what Bob, esq. has been getting at I think.

    However, I’m not out to ban weaponry, but to license and control its dissemination and widespread use. i.e. A law permitting carrying guns in a bar is a recipe for disaster. That’s why in the old westerns so may plot-lines devolved around the Sheriff having cowboys take off their guns when they came to town. The filmmakers and moviegoers generally recognized that everyone packing caused trouble, chaos and a diminishing of legal restraint. Too many today have ignored the morality myth running through these Westerns and focused on the feelings of fear engendered by the wrong people being armed. Interestingly as Bob has also pointed out in his “danger list” their fear is hardly warranted by the evidence. Part of this is the effect of “if it bleeds it leads” journalism and another part comes from the MIC/Law Enforcement/DEA types justifying their insane budgets.

  61. Sir, your talking about “You” and what has kept “you” up at Night!….
    * It seems to me that you are a ADULT…. Well, Unless your a “Kid” I Suppose that my Posting is in Reference to “You” ……
    But it was Not Referencing “ADULTS” … my POSTS are in Reference to “What most defiantly Promotes Violent Behavior amongst Our Youth!
    *** Therefore, what does not Affect “you” as an ADULT,
    has a TRAUMATIC effect on Under-developed (Mentally) Minds of Children !

    So… Please Stop Comparing yourself to a CHILD !

  62. Wizard:

    “Why ? Because their up All Night (whether or Not you Know this!) Lack of Sleep! Not Good!”


    Well, to state the obvious before I was an adult I was a child who stayed up at night reading or watching these things. Oh the horror!

    Maybe you can get a seat in your wife’s class since I think you may need it more than the kids you sit around disparaging for being kids.

  63. To : idealist707
    I most; very much, are Pleased with your response to my Post…. Keep up the Good Observations of which you and everyone has the Freedom of Speech.
    To you I say BRAVO !

  64. Wizard,

    We don’t use honorifics here, so you can drop the Sir and call him by his moniker. But if you were being ironic, then that’s another thing.

    Excuse my earlier mispelling your moniker.

  65. Mike, I hear what you are saying….
    But, I’m still looking at “TEXAS”
    And from Memory….it seems that their State has Less Violence, due to the fact that its Citizens are carrying side shooters….
    Now… how many Wackos would even attempt to initiate an act of Violence with a Weapon, if they see that many other People can Stop them Dead in their Tracks ?

  66. mespo727272,
    It seems to me that you “get off” on correcting the Observations, and opinions of other people, as to your Beliefs… which unless you Forgot to put the word :
    “GOD” in front of your Call Name : god-mespo727272, YOU SHOULD NOT EVEN READ OTHER PEOPLES POSTINGS, AND OPINIONS !
    Because it’s obvious, that you are a
    “Righteous know it All”
    Yea Know what…. Stop Replying to me, cause I’m just gonna BLOCK YOU !!
    Have a good Life.

  67. Guns are the WMD of interpersonal violence. They are to human beings what H-bombs are to nations. Guns take killing into a whole new order of magnitude. And then there are assault weapons that take guns to another order of magnitude of killing.

    This has been an interesting discussion, but let’s remember what’s at the heart of this debate.

    Matches are dangerous, but playing with them in a room soaked with gasoline is really about the gasoline, not the matches.

  68. Wizard,

    You got him pegged better than I have. I did not know that it was a God complex that he suffers from. I thought it was the insecurity of considering ideas that frightened him. Like he favors droning kids, and fought for it for two days here. Why. It was motivated by our need of security from the terrorists there. If my recall is to be trusted.

    All of us need our teddy bears, but they take different forms. Now mine is……..!

  69. DigitalDave, most people who have matches do not become obsessed with their power, eager to practice starting fires, or desirous of buying acetylene torches because they’re so much more efficient than matches. What’s happening with the gun culture in this country has a lot to do with something that is not related to the weaponry itself: IMO, that is, the over-inflation of the aggressive-male (or aggressive-hostility-addicted female) desire to control more than can be controlled. We are, as a society, in a peculiar position with respect to that phenomenon for which I am now going to coin a phrase.

    Over-inflation of male or pseudo-male obsessional desire for control of things that cannot be controlled: Hypertrolling Mania. For short, “HiM”

    Matches do not increase HiM. Guns tend to do so, especially big BIG guns and those that fire lots and LOTS of bullets really fast and hard and loud.

    Matches are only dangerous in the hands of a very few people who suffer from pyromania. HiM, however, is becoming quite commonplace in our society and is even being increased and beefed up by an organized advertising onslaught driven by the sale of expensive weaponry. Matches are handed out free at restaurants and are not even advertised.

    After two generations of hot-media heroification of gun-slinging “real men” who decide when and where they will kill in order to make things good again, and into the high-definition super-activating broadcast representations of SWAT teams saving the world with storms of bullets in every-day shoot-outs taking place everywhere as commonplace as traffic stops and more effective, our resistance to the deleterious effects are so numbed and calloused that it takes ever-increasing body counts and ever decreasing age and vulnerability of victims to make us go, “huh?” And then the inevitable, “senseless murders” and “unanswered questions” and “blah blah blah blah” that buries the realities in layers of intoxicating and paralyzing blather until the next HiM addict lets loose.

    It is probably way too late for us to wake up from this nightmare. I just thought perhaps the “naming of parts” would jog something loose somewhere, if only in my own psyche. 😥

  70. A good article to add to the debate.


    “The U.S. gun homicide rate is 30 times that of France or Australia, according to the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, and 12 times higher than the average for other developed countries.

    So what explains this difference? If psychology is the main cause, we should have 12 times as many psychologically disturbed people. But we don’t. The United States could do better, but we take mental disorders seriously and invest more in this area than do many peer countries.

    Is America’s popular culture the cause? This is highly unlikely, as largely the same culture exists in other rich countries. Youth in England and Wales, for example, are exposed to virtually identical cultural influences as in the United States. Yet the rate of gun homicide there is a tiny fraction of ours. The Japanese are at the cutting edge of the world of video games. Yet their gun homicide rate is close to zero! Why? Britain has tough gun laws. Japan has perhaps the tightest regulation of guns in the industrialized world.

    The data in social science are rarely this clear. They strongly suggest that we have so much more gun violence than other countries because we have far more permissive laws than others regarding the sale and possession of guns. With 5 percent of the world’s population, the United States has 50 percent of the guns.

    There is clear evidence that tightening laws — even in highly individualistic countries with long traditions of gun ownership — can reduce gun violence. In Australia, after a 1996 ban on all automatic and semiautomatic weapons — a real ban, not like the one we enacted in 1994 with 600-plus exceptions — gun-related homicides dropped 59 percent over the next decade. The rate of suicide by firearm plummeted 65 percent. (Almost 20,000 Americans die each year using guns to commit suicide — a method that is much more successful than other forms of suicide.)”

  71. Malisha,
    It seems so self cleer in your words, which also complement Juris’.

    Yes I saw similarly in a post by Zwick on UK regs. Tnx for the world view and anchoring it here.

    In six visits to Japan from ’65 to 2008 I never saw ANY violence. Which proves naught, except my experiences there. Believe me, japs get drunk as kites, as it is the only time that it is allowed to be a bit silly. Sad for them.

    But stats do in this case.


    Guns first, Attitudes later. The latter has been a problem for centuries. Guns are the new factor. Murder will still happen, just not so frequently.

  72. Juris, I think it’s not a coincidence that there has been a concerted effort, including the NRA’s coming out to introduce and deflect the discussion onto mental health and video games as the prime culprits. Even Holy Joe Liberman, treading the razor’s edge of “yes I’m a liberal” “yes I’m a neocon” (i.e., he’s a fraud for hire) jumps in the act with a nod to gun control and a big “look over here” to video games and mental health. To repeat myself, Colt Firearms Company, Hartford Connecticut.

    Not that these issues of foci would probably represent a serious concern for the anti-regulation/2nd amendment uber alles types — though I hesitate to generalize in this austere forum😉 — simply they conform to the maxim “anything but that” (looking beneath the covers of the arms industry).

  73. I just want to revise my statement @7:10 . . . there really isn’t that much distance, in a practical sense, between pols of the liberal and neocon persuasion. (far afield though that is from the topic of this post!)

  74. DonS, I don’t believe in coincidences either. In the interests of disclosure, I am not a gun owner but would like to purchase a handgun (my wife says no and wears the pants). After actually taking the time to do some background research, I am convinced that we need more strict gun laws in this country. I never thought I would say that, but the numbers don’t lie. The points in Fareed’s article hammer it home for me.

  75. DonS,

    Not to nitpick, well, actually to nitpick, I think you mean “between the pols of the neoliberal and neocon persuasion”. 1) There really aren’t many if any true liberal pols out there and 2) the primary difference between neolibs and neocons is they are both fascist pushing for respective devaluation of political liberty, equality, substantive citizenship and undermining the rule of law with a slightly different take on how to use the military to gain their respective ends.

    The main difference is the neoliberals favor of governance according to market criteria and neoconservatives seek valorization of state power for putatively moral ends. Both are anti-democratic, authoritarian and ultimately fascist although it is hard to gauge which one has the more totalitarian bent as they favor competing modes of inducing oppression. Both types inhabit the far right of the political spectrum in practice because of their bent to authoritarianism and disrespect for the rule of law regardless of their roots (which is at the extremes of both end of the political spectrum in an odd cross fertilization of flavors of fascism – the neocons came from the Reagan Democrats and the Neolibs from the traditional conservative movement). They can be found mostly in the GOP (neocons) and the Libertarian Party (neolibs) primarily because of economic preferences, but there are Democrats who fit the neoliberal mold too such as Nancy Pelosi.

    A true classical liberal would never put up with any of that jingoistic corporatist gibberish from either group.

    Jefferson would want to burn the lot of them.

    Just to clarify the terminology.

  76. Wizard:

    ” YOU SHOULD NOT EVEN READ OTHER PEOPLES POSTINGS, AND OPINIONS !Yea Know what…. Stop Replying to me, cause I’m just gonna BLOCK YOU !!
    Have a good Life.”


    To block out annoying communications from the heavens, I’d suggest pulling the tin foil down tighter around your ears. Oh and before you do, I want to tell you there’s an easy way to keep people from reading your mindless drivel. You can probably figure that out.

    Oh and on the good life: You, too.

    Deity, out!

  77. And just to supplement, I am not naive enough to think that stricter gun laws would have prevented the Sandy Hook tragedy.

  78. Malisha,
    As per your Enlightening Observations, which are accounted for; obviously by your intense study of Psychology, many People should be open to your Level of acknowledgment ……. To You I say BRAVO!!!!!

  79. Juris, sounds like you and your wife have an area of disagreement — although you don’t say what drives your wish to purchase a handgun. If that little detail didn’t exist, I would say, sure, get a gun see how that effects you.

    I have a couple of guns, a rarely shot: a .410 single shot shotgun which I got maybe 30 years ago, with the advice of a good ol country boy I worked with; bought it a the downtown pawn/gun shop. The purpose: to deal with rattle snakes and copperheads. Haven’t had to use it for that purpose, and I’ve shot it maybe a couple of dozen times at a outdoor range. And I have a 9 shot revolver H & R .22 cal that a friend gave me, I think actually, because he was interested in getting some more interesting and high powered stuff. He’s very much into the mechanical and boom boom fascination. Anyway it’s a fun little gun and I’ve shot it also a couple dozen times, usually with the friend who gave it to me. Not in 5 years or so. I also had a .22 cal single shot bolt action rifle that I got at a local farm store maybe35 years ago. Just for plinking. We lived in a place where I could shoot it in the backyard (like all the locals did, but with bigger bore stuff, usually on Sun morning, instead of church I suppose😉 Even had my daughter do a couple of rounds into a target when she was maybe 10 years old which, I imagine, she wouldn’t even remember. Cartridges would sometime jam getting them into the chamber. I sold it at a yard sale when we moved.

    So, having a gun around. For what? Protection. Then it best be loaded and accessible. For preparation if the Feds try to abrogate all our “god given rights”? Who knows how that whole scenario would go down, but it’s kind of like having your own militia. It’s not really a realistic scenario for me. They’re stealing our nation piecemeal as it is? To check it out and maybe work it out of your system. I can understand that.

    Anyway, long winded. I respect your wife’s pov, and she probably knows you pretty well!

  80. Gene, you are so right. My terminology was loose loose loose. I would definitely call Holy Joe a neolib sooner that a classical liberal, although it is quite difficult to nail down someone as unctuous as he, or him😉

  81. DonS, for protection. There was an incident about 6 months ago a couple of miles from here in which some young kid kicked in a door of an old couple’s house. The story goes that he attacked the wife, the old man ran upstairs and grabbed a gun and shot and killed the kid. initially it was reported as completely random, which really scared the hell out of me. I moved out of St. Louis City in large part due to the crime. It was later reported that there was a lot more to the story (long story,

    I was hoping my wife would learn to shoot it with me, as I often work long hours and she is here alone with the kids. But she was and is adamantly opposed.

    In more social times, I had a few friends that were police officers and went to the shooting range a few times with them. We shot the guns they used on the force (I can’t remember what they were called – I am a complete gun ignoramus). I was surprised at how difficult it was to aim. I always thought it was weird when I would visit those friends on their off days, their guns would literally be laying on their dresser or on the kitchen counter. They were bachelors and had no reason to put it away. I am a city boy and guns are foreign to me.

  82. Wizard, thank you. But this is one of those times I am not glad to be right. I really had such higher hopes for us all. Once. When I was terribly ignorant, that is.

  83. It just occurred to me: Lieberman knows full well that he can’t even BEGIN to get legislation such as he is suggesting. Ridiculous. He just said that for political capital, so next time somebody shoots somebody (the nation cares about) Lieberman can jump up and say, “I tried to stop all this, I’m the one who didn’t want this to happen, and nobody listened to me, it’s ME ME ME ME!”

    Just imagine, a law against violent video games. I practically bust a gut laughing about it when it hit me what he was actually fixing his mouth to say. Don’t ask me what I think about him.

  84. Malisha,

    First let me apologize for lashing out at you and Bettykath a few weeks ago on the Zimmerman/Martin thing. I crossed the line and am sorry for it. I just couldn’t take the absolutes you speak of in regards to that case. Obviously, you are very passionate about it. I will try to find the feed and post my apology there as well and resume discussion. Maybe you will convince me GZ is guilty as hell😉. Now that that is out of the way…

    I think DonS is right on in attributing any video game problem to that of inadequate parenting. Any law banning a video game is ridiculous and a red herring.

  85. Juris, it’s true, there are folks for whom having a gun around is as normal as apple pie.. But there is a whole other dimension involved in using it, especially against a person. That’s a whole different mindset. It seems, to me, incredible that even thinking along those lines is a reality for some folks. I guess it requires a certain level of fear to contemplate that reality, or maybe for some blissful ignorance or absence of emotional awareness.

    Anyway, not my job to prognosticate about your struggles, when I can barely settle my own. I would say that my wife would feel like yours (my guns are stashed away, with the ammunition in a totally different place) and I’d probably be much more inclined to grab the nearest pipe or other appropriate implement in self defense.

    I wonder what the statistics are as opposed to say, getting in a serious car accident?

  86. Gene H., well said. When will the majority realize that both Neo Liberal economics and Neo Con foreign policy have both failed miserably…

  87. Wizard,

    Texas ranks as the fifteenth highest State in violent crime. That means 70% of the States have a lower rate of violent crime. Not exactly an endorsement of its gun policies, or the deterrence to criminality of armed citizens. Most of the States with the highest rates of violent crime have easy laws on gun access, so the argument you’re using isn’t the best for those who would justify an armed citizenry. Google State violent crime rates and see for yourself.

  88. DonS,

    “I guess it requires a certain level of fear to contemplate that reality…” That’s what it took for me to start thinking about getting a gun. Although, I can’t say I specifically contemplated, in the visual sence, of using it against a person, nor would I ever want to.

    For me, it would just be peace of mind more than anything. I don’t know the chances, but I would bet that, at least where I live, I have a better chance of going in a car accident or even by tornado or lightning.

    I am skeptical whether the gun would be useful in the event of a break-in, as I would have to keep it in a safe or some other safe place, as I have young kids that love snooping. All depends on the circumstances, but I would imagine I wouldn’t have a lot of time to go get it. But you never know.

    I am an ex-ballplayer and have a few louisville sluggers hidden at strategic places throughout the house. Those will do for now. Knowing all the while that this is mostly due to hysteria after the recent events I described above, which has since dissipated.

  89. Back from ECG.

    As far as I know, we can tell Lieberman that no video game ever killed anybody.
    And in spite of intensive video training, that new recruits must have intensive “polishing” to make killers out them.
    And a high rate of vets didn’t clear the stress. PTSD and suicide.
    They fight back and we bleed for real.

    So Malisha gets my vote for her “grilling” him.

  90. Juris, “a few Louisville sluggers”. Yes just what I was thinking! I used to work in an agency with a detox center, and the walk in traffic was a little unpredictable at times. My boss, who’s office was just off the lobby had a sawed off pool cue leaning in the corner. Highly effective I would think. I’ve been threatened a few times, including two involving knife wielders and, while frightened, I’ve managed to get out of the situations without any harm either way or to have to take retaliatory action.

    While listing my arsenal before I forgot to include a nice air rifle that I got to pepper the butts of the marauding herds of deer in our backyard; startle one and they all take off. Better than my wife rushing out in the back yard screaming at them. But I have a hard time even doing that now.

  91. Don S.
    I guess that you have no flowers, maybe a rhododendron or two.
    Glad Jul, as we say here. To Juris too.
    My ECG showed that I am back in flutter again. Hoping the medicine will take effect soon.

    Entranced by a pretty woman at the sushi court. 3 hours later, deaf from bad XMAS music and numbed by her many troubles I went home via the grocery store. There is energy and hope yet..

  92. ID707, We’ve deer proofed by eliminating certain favorite vegetation, but they adjust their eating too; pretty much wife has given up on trying to be too fancy. We have an 8 foot fence around veggie garden.

    Sorry to hear about your medical state. My own current complaints include an attack of “intercostal inflammation” that’s gone on a couple weeks, and likely to go on a few more. Not much known about origin, or treatment. It’s about the most painful thing I can remember; very limiting to physical activity. Boohoo.

  93. DonS,

    Up temporarily to take my meds.

    Now know why misery loves company, when it comes to sickness there is always someone who has it worse than you do. And it is your duty as a human NOT to tell them that theirs is worse of the two. I am in no pain at least, but mine has its disadvantages of other kinds.

    Hope you have good anti-neuralgic meds and no pain caused by breathing.

    Woke up from my nap feeling like I had let the hospital sell me a bad used car. Blah.

    After many methods failed I put up a 1 meter 80 cm “wild fence” (max allowed) which gave many years of garden pleasure to the wife, particularly her taste for a white garden including climbing roses.

    Then the deer began hurling themselves against the fence, and broke it down in 5 places, which has happened since I moved to town. She passed away some 4 years ago. So now I have some 300 ex rhododendrons of mostly wild apecies and some azaleas too. But azalea buds are candy for them.

    Now I am giving TMI again. Too much information.

    Hope we are both better tomorrow.

  94. Thanks, Mike. Same back at ya.

    I thought more than a minute about mentioning my condition, but it is an ‘interesting’ one which I doubt many of us have ever heard of.,


    ID, and tulips and lilies are candy; daffodils not. Depends some on the year, the scarcity of winter forage, and deer perversity😉.. Generally we love to hate them, but last year my wife got Lyme disease and so we’re not so understanding anymore. Of course “we” have created the problem of out of control herds by creating exactly the kind of habitat (‘edge’) that they thrive in by cutting down too much of the Eastern forests.

  95. Juris, I can’t remember anything about you coming at me about the Zimmerman case. So obviously I didn’t take offense but if I seemed to, that’s probably because I was doing the polemic thing I thought the question merited. Let me give you in very brief form my take on Zimmerman’s guilt.

    1. He expressed (to Sean on NEN call) hostility to Trayvon Martin while he claimed not to have ever seen him before, and then could not adequately explain his suspicions.

    2. He claimed (to Serino) that he had not followed Trayvon Martin when clearly and obviously he HAD followed him.

    3. He claimed (on Hannity) that he knew that Trayvon Martin was not afraid of him, when it is so obvious that Trayvon was afraid of him that it is beyond, as they say, “cavil.”

    4. He claimed (to Singleton) that Trayvon appeared out of the darkness and said, “You got a f*ckin’ problem, homie?” which even he later questioned.

    5. He announced (on Hannity) that he did not regret getting out of his car that night, that he did not regret having a loaded gun with him that night, and that he had NO REGRETS about that night.

    6. He claimed (about five, six times) that his purpose in getting out of the car was to get an address or a street name for the police, an obvious lie.

    There is my synopsis of “the reasons I believe George Zimmerman is guilty of second-degree murder.”

    Now, don’t go trying to find a thread to post an apology on; I don’t need any apology but if it’s important to you that I got one, I accept it and thank you for it.

    Here’s me: I don’t care who opposes me. I don’t care who agrees with me. I try to use logic to form my opinions. When I don’t, I try to see that I am not. I try to give myself counter-arguments, if only to be able to defeat them as mental exercise. I generally like and respect people who will argue with me even if I disagree with them. If I disrespect somebody hurtfully, and it is not a person I MEAN to hurt, I want to learn of it and have a chance to apologize and set it straight. If I have disrespected somebody hurtfully and it IS a person I mean to hurt (right now, that would include George Zimmerman but not Mark O’Mara; it would include Alan Dershowitz but not Jeralyn Merritt), I am not sorry.

    So, let’s keep talking, I much appreciate the conversation with you! :-)

    About the guns: A while back a few countries made it illegal for parents to hit children. There were no penalties, though, and no prosecutions. What the laws did was STATE, in effect, “this is not OK.” Everybody knows that it was broken from time to time. I don’t believe in hitting kids but I hit my own kid twice and he remembers both times (and laughs about them, telling me I didn’t hurt him at all, though both times I was beside myself with anger). But the point of it was that the countries (I think they were Scandinavian) were publishing social guidelines. That is PART of the idea of gun control. You really cannot control the ownership of guns. You really canNOT keep folks from amassing huge amounts of weaponry and doing horrible damage with it. But you can definitely start to say, as a society: “OK we are not going to glorify this overly resentful, hostile, angry, seemingly masculine, seemingly “strong” and “macho” idea any more. We are now going to de-mystify the gunslinger. We are going to start seeing him as an anti-hero and not as a hero. We are going to start demanding that the competing image of a non-violent, responsible, protective male can come into his own. We are doing this officially: get used to it.”

    Gun control will naturally bring with it, albeit gradually, the image of the VIOLATOR of that social imperative being a CRIMINAL and not a HERO. That is where we need to go. We can go slowly. Gun control would, obviously, be only the first very small baby-step. But we do need to take it.

    Saying that it won’t solve all of our problems does not mean that we should not do it. We should do it because we need to start solving our problems, not fussing about what will NOT solve them.

  96. Oops,😳 I slipped off thread on both counts, Juris.

    About the violent video games: I don’t like them. I wouldn’t want my kids to play them. If I were a legislator I wouldn’t pretend that I could pass a law against them, either. I can’t stand Lieberman. He only says good things about me, though. 😀

  97. Hi, Idealist707,

    Good reply, overall. I’ll try to be succinct, though I’ll fail.

    “Norway in common with most nations has inadequate psych facilities.
    Here in Sweden, routinely those needing ER psych help are given a days help and released to the streets.” So does the US though it’s generally 72 hours to ascertain “danger”. Obviously, that only applies to those who are put into psych evaluation. Too many aren’t and those that are for too short a time. So Norway and Sweden have the same problems as the USA.

    ” All societies are sick due to violence….And where did that culture come from, not from any country but the USA. Don’t try to weasel out when the world regards (ie the people) you as the world’s most dangerous terrorists.” Blaming others for your behavior is not healthy. The USA does dominate in entertainment, what you do with it is your culture’s fault, see “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (the Trilogy, the Swedish version of the first better than the English version).

    As for the last sentence, it reminds me of what is now a joke in the US: “how could Nixon get elected to President, no one I know voted for him?”. You did the “appeal to numbers” with conflation of “terrorist” to military operations. I do understand that Sweden doesn’t know what “military” means other than in Parade. I also understand that Swedish media encompass world opinion exactingly.

    Your comment does lead to a subtext of how those who won’t protect themselves, or others, hate those who do and will wax with moral preening: You did nothing to stop ethnic cleansing in Bosnia in the 90’s. Nothing; we had to step in and frankly I was disgusted that Europeans were so impotent that we had to step in. You have built your economies on the expectation that the USA would spend it’s money protecting you. You have no basis to justify your moral-preening, but believe that preening gives you all the right to judge us while you suck from us.

    I would be perfectly happy to see the USA pull all military protection from Europe, every last bit. I would love to see Europe fight not to lose all supply lines of oil, as well other resources, but to be dependent solely on the North Sea and what they could mine locally. Your economy would collapse, but wouldn’t drag the rest of us to oblivion. At your current state, Europe would give a whole new meaning to appeasement and fetal position when it comes to protecting itself.

    Sweden and Norway are peace loving, and contribute nothing substantial to keeping the peace, except words and prizes. You let others die to keep your peace and think your peace moral. You do nothing.

    “Doing so won’t even rise to the occasion of a “loose mind”, not even “no mind… (Now your comment) What you mean here is unclear. Please describe my prejudices. Your jibes as to my mental capacity is yours to expound. But I need no defense from that loose accusation.”

    I quoted you regarding me from the ZImmerman thread where you called him, essentially, a murderer looking for a victim. I took exception to that, not to support Z, but to question your post hoc ergo prompter hoc reasoning. I simply used your terms on you. Goose, gander. Do it first and I will follow, your loose accusation just gives me opportunity.

  98. Malisha, I shouldn’t have flattered myself thinking you would recall. All the better. Water under the bridge.

    As to Zimmerman, to be clear, I am not saying he is innocent, only that I do not know who initiated the physical confrontation and I think each side has more evidence to be presented. GZ is a moron for following and putting himself in the position he did, but that does not automatically mean he is guilty of murder. I do think prosecution will have a tough time doing away with reasonable doubt. That is all I will say about that until the next appropriate thread when you and me can go at it (we both know there will be numerous as trial date gets near).

    As to YOU, as you describe, good stuff.

    I am with you on the no hitting kids thing. I have a 2 yr old boy and 3 mo. old girl. My pediatrician recommended a great book for disciplining – 1-2-3 Magic. I recommend to any parent for disciplining methods.

    See ya round.

  99. MikeS,
    Thanks, you indeed should know, and perhaps LJC too.

    Lyme disease is a bad one. Hope they caught it early. Here it is a ten day penicillin cure. Germany treats it much longer. Have had it 5 times.

    Daffodils we have lots. And not nary a nibble.

    We thinned the forests and the bush is gone. And fewer trees both small and large. Stockhol county is worst in Sweden for just Lyme disease.

  100. Malisha and other child beaters 😉 ,

    I was almost reported to the police when a young couple reacted to my shaking my wife’s sister’s 8 year old.’ This occured as the heigth of the younger parents indignation for their own upbringing some twenty five years ago, I was charged with him for two hours, parked in a downtown mall’s children play area. The boy had raced around as the first he did, mistreating other children. So high´were the feelings aroused in the young idealists who raced to his aid. After a short discussion they departed.

    The physical, and even emotional, abuse of children is definitely forbidden and will be tried for. Some cases receive media notice each year.
    It was timely, in keeping with reformation of society from top to toe here.
    And the flattening of society by eliminating titles (we don’t even say sir, mister, madame, etc, has been accompanied non.acceptance of any form of child abuse, even emotional. (For example, even high level doctors and professors are addressed by their first name or the last whichever fits comfortably, but no honors titles.

    So if you should come here and give your child a good shaking, expect to be detained, fined and possibly imprisoned.

    We don’t solve things between people other than by ostracizing them or compromise. Frustrating for an American in 1968. Now I thank ´my lucky stars for this.

  101. Something else about the matches to guns analogy.

    We don’t, as a cultural expression, see the following:

    “I have matches. And if somebody comes here trying to burn down my house, I’m sure nuff gonna light my matches and burn down HIS HOUSE FIRST! You can’t just tell me you’re gonna burn down my house and get away with it.”

    We don’t, as a cultural expression, see a TV show about two guys faced off, lots of tense music, and then one of them lights a match first and wins and he’s the good guy and the other guy is absolutely defeated so we know whom to love and whom to hate.

    The whole analogy ignores our habits, our misconceptions, our myths, our vulnerabilities, our common social sicknesses and our history.

  102. Oooooh, you mean it was not only weak, it should be seen as a misdirected feint, a diversion, a digressive move, an idea used to ridicule others, etc etc.

    YES, YES, YES.

    Sometimes coins don’t always drop in the automat we call a brain.

    Saying as I would that I think we will see a lot of that, is too weak compared to the millions we’ve been fed in the last two decades alone.

    Let me repeat Carlin and et al here:

    Two parties, one joint idea, two facades in different colors—-all meant to distract from the true situation, and insure retention of the status quo.


    Adam Lanza was bullied when he attended Sandy Hook Elementary

    A relative of Newtown shooter Adam Lanza revealed details about his days as a Newtown Elementary School student.

    Published: April 15, 2013 at 12:26 PM

    Newtown shooter Adam Lanza was taunted and beaten when he attended Newtown Elementary School as a child, a relative has revealed.

    The NY Daily News reported Saturday that Lanza’s mother even considered suing Newtown Elementary School after teachers failed to address the bullying her son was subjected to while he attended to the school.

    “Adam would come home with bruises all over his body,” the relative told the Post. “His mom would ask him what was wrong, and he wouldn’t say anything. He would just sit there.”

    According to the relative, Lanza’s late mother was very upset at school officials for turning a blind eye on the situation and was trying to get more evidence before taking legal action against the institution.

    “Nancy felt fiercely protective of him,” a relative told the post. “She was convinced the school wasn’t doing enough to protect Adam. It made her irate. She was trying to get proof. She wanted to know where the bruises were coming from.”

    Lanza’s mother, Nancy Lanza, was murdered by her 20-year-old son on December 14th before he went on a killing spree at Newtown Elemendtary School ending the life of 26 people, 20 of whom were first graders.

    The relative said Lanza was never “emotionally right” after attending Sandy Hook Elementary School and his mother switched him to a different institution after sixth grade.

    “He was a sick boy,” the relative said.

    Read more:

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