Tag Archives: Jared Loughner

News & Comment

Before Tucson, Fox Vitriol Inspired Six Domestic Terror Attacks in Two and a Half Years

Domestic Terror: From left, Wilson, Williams, Adkisson, Poplawski, Von Brunn, Giusti, Beck, Goldberg
Domestic Terror: From left, Wilson, Williams, Adkisson, Poplawski, Von Brunn, Giusti, Beck, Goldberg

In an article titled, “6 Lunatics Inspired by Fox News and Glenn Beck,” published on Oct. 28 — so six weeks before before Jared Loughner’s terror attack in Tucson that left six people dead and 13 wounded, including Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords — Jim Edwards, columnist for BNET, recapped six instances over the past two-and-a-half years in which lunatics who committed violent acts, or were thwarted before they could act, later said they were inspired to violence after intense exposure to propaganda from Fox and Glenn Beck:

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News & Comment

More on Right-Wing Influences That Drove Loughner to Violence

A week or so after crazed gunman Jared Loughner’s Jan. 8 alleged terror attack on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and her constituents in Tucson that left six dead and 13, including Giffords, wounded, it’s the consensus now that Loughner was not driven to mass murder by Sarah Palin’s crosshairs map.

The Times asserts that only liberals like to smoke pot and listen to the Jimi Hendrix and the Doors.

The fact that there is no provable causal link between Loughner’s actions and Palin’s map does not mean Loughner, in his madness, was not influenced by GOP-tea party toxicity. As we noted on Jan. 12, Loughner was definitely influenced by a right-wing kook named David Wynn Miller and his “sovereign citizens” movement, which advocates declaring oneself exempt from laws set forth in the U.S. Constitution. Some of the more extremist factions in the right-wing militia movement are founded on a similar concept.

The Los Angeles Times also published a report on Loughner’s influences on Jan 12:

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News & Comment

Breaking: Hey Right Wing, You Can Have Jared Loughner Back

Someone’s finally sorting out the mess that is Jared Loughner’s mind and discovering what most of us have suspected all along. Loughner has much more in common with rightwing extremists than with the political left. Justine Sharrock at Mother Jones explains what Loughner’s obsession with grammar means to people in the “sovereign citizen” movement, which among many other things, maps out strategies to avoid paying taxes.

Glenn Beck would no doubt be envious of the hairpin logic used by the “sovereign citizens”

Many of his seemingly random statements—on “grammar,” “the ratifications,” “the new currency,” and more—echo the teachings of the “sovereign citizen” movement, a right-wing school of thought alleging that Americans have been surreptitiously stripped of their God-given rights.

These are not random parallels, as I discovered in reviewing Loughner’s YouTube videos. In multiple instances, he uses the precise talking points sovereign-citizen theorists teach via a thriving cottage industry of books, websites, bogus legal companies, and seminars; one popular theorist, David Wynn Miller, told the New York Times that Loughner has “probably been on my website.”

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News & Comment

In the End, Palin’s Followers Will See Her as Tucson Tragedy’s Ultimate Victim

Glad the news media is quickly recognizing who the real victim of this week’s shooting is: Sarah Palin.

Teresa Kopec, via Twitter.

It is fair to say that, upon learning about the assassination attempt on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords on Saturday, most regular Americans assumed that a deranged tea partier had been pushed over the edge by one anti-government, anti-Democratic Party dog whistle too many from the GOP’s Fox channel personalities and hate radio propagandists.

That’s certainly what people close to Giffords assumed. On Saturday, as he rushed to his daughter’s side at the hospital, Spencer Giffords, 75, was asked if Gabrielle had any enemies. “Yeah,” he replied, “the whole tea party.”

Over the ensuing three days, it has become clear that the alleged shooter, Jared Loughner, suffered from delusions, at least, and, at worst, was in throes of mental illness that was untreated, perhaps even undiagnosed.

It is equally clear that Loughner planned the attack and specifically targeted Rep. Giffords, a Democrat, because she was a member of Congress. When police searched Loughner’s home, they found an envelope on which he had written, “I planned ahead,” and “My assassination” and the name “Giffords.”

And witnesses say Loughner ran through the crowd at the congresswoman’s event in Tucson and opened fire when he spotted her talking with constituents.

What is still murky, however, is whether or to what extent the toxic political environment, which is especially acute in Arizona, home to nationally known Republican hatemongers Sen. John McCain and Gov. Jan Brewer, played a role in his rampage.

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