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Bernie Sanders Links Political Rhetoric to Violence When ‘Right-Wing,’ Not When Perpetrated by His Own Volunteer

The senator’s Jared Loughner/James Hodgkinson hypocrisy is all too common.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) today reacted to hearing news that congressional baseball shooter James Hodgkinson was a volunteer on his presidential campaign with a somber and unequivocal statement that he was "sickened," and that "violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society." Watch it here:

Sanders did not choose in this moment to stand up and denounce the increasingly violent rhetoric coming from the left wing of American politics, and appropriately so: As I argued after Jared Loughner's deadly Arizona shooting rampage in 2011 (and again as recently as last month), responsibility for acts of violence lies with the perpetrators, not unconnected persons engaged in political hyperbole, no matter how deranged the latter. I only wish such post-Loughner restraint had been shown by Bernie Sanders himself.

Why did I think that this cover was acceptable? ||| ReasonReasonOn January 11, 2011, three days after Loughner shot Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) and murdered six people, Sanders sent out a fundraising email that, among other things, criticized Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) for not doing more to condemn right-wing political rhetoric. Excerpt:

Nobody can honestly express surprise that such a tragedy finally occurred. […] Congresswoman Giffords publicly expressed concerns when Sarah Palin, on her website, placed her district in the cross-hairs of a rifle – and identified her by name below the image – as an encouragement to Palin supporters to eliminate her from Congress. […] In light of all of this violence – both actual and threatened – is Arizona a state in which people who are not Republicans are able to participate freely and fully in the democratic process? Have right-wing reactionaries, through threats and acts of violence, intimidated people with different points of view from expressing their political positions? My colleague, Senator John McCain, issued a very strong statement after the shooting in which he condemned the perpetrator of the attack. I commend him for that. But I believe Senator McCain and other Arizona Republicans need to do more. As the elder statesman of Arizona politics McCain needs to stand up and denounce the increasingly violent rhetoric coming from the right-wing and exert his influence to create a civil political environment in his state.

Click on the link for the full context. One can only imagine his level of vituperation had Loughner been, say, a Sarah Palin volunteer. As I predicted back then:

This will not be the last time political violence will be perpetrated or attempted during Obama's presidency (or those of his successors), so the pattern is worth committing to memory. Terrible deed prompts premature finger-pointing….Partisans immediately blame their mirror images on the other side of the aisle, and endless oxygen is expended debating an undefinable "climate" of violence allegedly created by political expression.

And further,

most of the people calling for a "new tone," for a rhetorical disarmament in the discussion of politics, [will be] motivated not by an equal opportunity antipathy to non-empirical hyperbole, but by a partisan revulsion at excess from the side whose beliefs they happen to find distasteful.

On days like today, it's worth engaging in a little self-inventory to see how you reacted when the political violence was aimed at the opposing team. If in one case you assign responsibility to the shooter, and not to the political opponents of the targets, you really ought to do so in the other. Any talk of hyperbolic rhetoric then becomes a secondary, though still interesting, issue.

Photo Credit: Facebook

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  • Citizen X - #6||

    Guy Who Owns Three Houses And Still Thinks The USSR Was OK Turns Out To Be Hypocritical Idiot; Film At 11

  • ATXChappy||

    To be fair, dacha's where very popular with people in the Politburo Bureau. So, I'm not sure he's being hypocritical owning 3 houses. It was common practice in the good ole USSR. "It's good to be the king" ya know.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    He's keeping those houses out of the hands of unscrupulous capitalists. That's sacrifice.

  • Citizen X - #6||

  • Chipper Morning, Now #1||

    Is that.....is that how they reproduce?

  • Donny Dilbert||

    Bolshevik Bernie is one of America's biggest & unethical phonies!!!....He has spent his whole career railing against Wall St. & USA War Mongers & yet, he endorses HildaBeast for prez,a corrupt witch, who was deeply in bed with Wall St. & also a War Criminal!!!

  • Hank Phillips||

    Robert Dear canonizer detected: looter-o-meter alert!

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Fuck off Hank.

  • Paradigm||

    Yes. And didn't Loughner turn out to be a Democrat anyway? He sure as hell wasn't a conservative.

  • NYC2AZ||

    Loughner turned out to be just plain nuts. He didn't seem to have a true political axe to grind like this guy in VA. That being said, this incident does seem to paint the political left into a bit of a corner of their own closely held beliefs. The political "progressives" do tend to believe that rhetoric leads to this sort of violence. They blame a flag for an attack at a church. They blame white, male, Christian, NRA members for an attack on a gay nightclub by an Islamist. They blame Palin for an attack on a democrat. They sure seem to believe this rhetoric causes violence but they put similar rhetoric into political platforms, editorial columns, academic grant proposals, classroom lectures, award acceptance speeches, snarky tweets, art, tv and movie plots, comedy skits, and on and on.

    At some point, a person that doesn't share their viewpoints might begin to wonder if they are hoping their rhetoric will result in violence and that they are simply projecting their own flaws upon those with which they disagree.

  • Zeb||

    Sanders did not choose in this moment to stand up and denounce the increasingly violent rhetoric coming from the left wing of American politics, and appropriately so

    I think you are right. But I'm kind of hoping that some Republicans start grandstanding about the violent rhetoric of the left, just for laughs. I usually don't go for that sort of thing. But there has been a lot of violent behavior and rhetoric from parts of the left recently and the phenomenon does deserve more attention.

  • mtrueman||

    Sanders was making a pitch for more money. If you expect him to denounce his supporters while asking them for money, you are extremely naive about political machinations.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    He was making a pitch for money in the excerpt of the post-Laughner fund raising letter in which he denounced the violent rhetoric from the "right wing." No one is expecting Berntard to denounce violent rhetoric coming from the left and especially from his own supporters, but a little consistency would be nice.

    But principals > principles.

  • mtrueman||

    "a little consistency would be nice."

    A unrigged system would be nicer still. Until then best not let yourself get sucked into this absurd bickering.

    "But principals > principles."

    More to the point, $ > principals > principles.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Work to repeal the Nixon tampering with the IRS code to cripple the LP as of 1971. There is no excuse for looters to meddle in elections by bribing brainwashers with proceeds of extortion. Worse, it sets an example for even more murderous junta-style dictatorships in primitive countries, whose populations wish they understood the nature of government of the definition of freedom.

  • MarkLastname||

    Note how, now that we're discussing a leftist behaving badly, mtrueman takes off his 'morally indignant' hat and puts on his 'cynical nihilist' hat, so he can call others who are morally indignant naive to distract from their bad behavior.

    It's like his entire personality is a motte and bailey.

  • mtrueman||

    "Note how, now that we're discussing a leftist behaving badly,"

    We're discussing Bernie Sanders scrounging for money. It's something that occupies a major portion of most politicians' work day. Otherwise known as Free Speech.

  • MarkLastname||

    No one doubts you have the freedom to drivel, but it is drivel.

  • mtrueman||

    " but it is drivel."

    I will do whatever it takes to capture your attention.

  • Entropy Drehmaschine Void||

    I will do whatever it takes to capture your attention.

    Self-Immolation would definitely work.

  • mtrueman||

    I do it with words. You're powerless before them.

  • Sevo||

    "...It's like his entire personality is a motte and bailey."

    I think you're ascribing cupidity rather than the more likely stupidity.

  • MarkLastname||

    The two work together in him. He's a perfect example of a moron who thinks he's clever.

  • paranoid android||

    Part of the difficulty is that the current media climate makes it very hard to know how alarmed one ought to be proportional to the problem. The left tolerates violent lunatics in their midst--and so does the right. That's likely always been the case, but before, there wasn't anything like the Internet that could allow every totalitarian and bigot in the world to broadcast their thoughts to the entire planet; and due to some unfortunate quirk of human psychology, people can look at the rhetoric from their own favored side and say "That's an outlier and does not represent us" while at the same time looking at what comes from the other side and saying "That confirms my belief that all those people are really like that".

    Am I actually in imminent danger of being strung up by a right-wing mob for miscegenation, or marched into a gulag by a left-wing mob for political wrongthink? How would I be able to tell if I were?

  • BakedPenguin||

    Am I actually in imminent danger of being strung up by a right-wing mob for miscegenation...

    Probably not. Otherwise my conservatarian Caucasian brother and his African wife are in trouble.

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    I'm sure she's got a cousin with $12,000,000 for her legal defense, if only someone with a bank account number would lend them a hand in extricating the funds.

  • Buddy Bizarre||

    He said African, not specifically Nigerian.

  • Animal||

    Like Charlize Theron?

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Am I actually in imminent danger of being strung up by a right-wing mob for miscegenation, or marched into a gulag by a left-wing mob for political wrongthink?

    It doesn't have to be an "either/or" situation.

  • HeteroPatriarch||

    Well, since there are actually active left-wing mobs and the worst thing right wingers have done in groups of more than one recently is elect Trump, I don't think there's really an equivalence.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Of course there isn't. A leftist could burn his neighbor's house down, then see a conservative light a cigarette with a lighter and try and claim equivalence. It's all part of progressives never being accountable for anything.

  • No Yards Penalty||

    Awright, who let the Nut-Con in? Did the Federalist closeup shop for the night?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Carry guns.

  • Chipper Morning, Now #1||

    They already did. Trump Jr. has already blamed the shooting on that Trump as Ceasar play.

  • Rhywun||

    Maybe this means Kathy Griffin will go into witness protection.

  • BakedPenguin||

    We can hope...

  • Cynical Asshole||

    I feel bad for the US Marshals deputies who get stuck with that duty.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    She should commit suicide.

  • josh||

    The Shakespeare production is what Kathy Griffin would've done if she had talent.

  • meister574||

    I would also like to see this. It is a bit of "whataboutism", but it can be helpful and entertaining to see ideologs squirm. But I suspect you will see Sanders get more heat from Democrats (specifically Hilary supporters) about his support of 2nd Amendment rights in Vermont.

  • Juice||

    They wouldn't squirm. They would treat it like it was totally serious and go all "whatabout" themselves.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    And then we get treated to an expended shit flinging episode as each side tries to come up with "proof" that the other side is more violent while any violence committed by theirs is just "a few bad apples."

    Can't wait for that to start. /sarc

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Except the right never commits any acts of violence.

  • JWatts||

    That's far from the truth. However, the Left does seem to be committing acts of violence to a much greater quantity and degree than the Right over the last several years.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Et tu? Quoque!

  • Ron||

    The difference between the right and the left in this case is the left inferred that the right was calling for violence which it hadn't but many people on the left are actually stating that violence is an appropriate action to Trump and the GOP

  • Diane Merriam||

    Back when Reagan was shot, I was in the college cafeteria when the news hit. Unsurprisingly (unfortunately), there immediately began the "Hope he shot straight" and "Hope they can't save him" and the like. I took it for about five minutes before I stood up and said, very loudly, "He wasn't the one I wanted for President either, but damn it, he's a human being and someone just shot him. You really think that's a good thing?" A lot of abashed faces, but also more than a few who looked at me with anger for speaking up.

  • marshaul||

    Well, isn't your rhetorical horse the high one. You must be a good person, taking a stand on things which matter like that.

  • ThomasD||

    Go fuck yourself.

    Pissant.

  • Arcxjo||

    Difference is that Tumblr isn't full of Republicans espousing the virtues of attacking "Nazis". A map with areas targeted for political action is in no way the same thing as actually inciting violence.

  • HeteroPatriarch||

    A map with geographic areas targeted is also not the same thing as an effigy being stabbed multiple times or beheaded.

  • HeteroPatriarch||

    A map with geographic areas targeted is also not the same thing as an effigy being stabbed multiple times or beheaded.

  • HeteroPatriarch||

    A map with geographic areas targeted is also not the same thing as an effigy being stabbed multiple times or beheaded.

  • HeteroPatriarch||

    A map with geographic areas targeted is also not the same thing as an effigy being stabbed multiple times or beheaded.

  • Buddy Bizarre||

    Congrats on the 4-peat!!

  • colorblindkid||

    Here's the difference between this and that, though.
    This is a guy with clear and unmistakable political motivations who openly supported Bernie and the Democrats..
    Jared Loughner left a rambling anarchist manifesto about his hate for all parties and never said anything about Sarah Palin. That is why that whole thing was ridiculous. The "There was a poster with bullseyes on a map!" thing was just fucking hilariously stupid.
    Of course, we still don't know the real motive of the Orlando shooter despite his detailed explicit statements about his motive.

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    Moozlimz are liarz; this is well-known. Therefore anything that Orlando shooter said is a lie. Therefore he's not a Moozlim.

    Welcome to politics.

  • Hank Phillips||

    "Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people."
    Licking the blacking off of politicians boots sets the examples for Unabombers, Christianofascist murderers like Chapman and Robert Dear, Televangelists like and communo-fascist morons like Bernie's volunteers. Reading the platforms of political parties, on the other hand, yields valuable information about which way to run from whichever team of Svengalis round up the largest crowd of morons.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    The big problem is the news media. Which is why we need to go after them. This shit won't end, and the progs won't stop unless they are put down hard. They believe they should just take over the country regardless of any elections.

    Something needs to be done about them. Which is going to take a lot more than bitching and hand wringing.

  • Entropy Drehmaschine Void||

    Of course, we still don't know the real motive of the Orlando shooter despite his detailed explicit statements about his motive.

    He has been totally "Unpersoned" by the Rainbow Mafia.

  • Sevo||

    I was told that if Trump were elected, there'd be more violence!

  • callahan2211||

    An unnamed source?

  • Elias Fakaname||

    As long as there are progressives there will be violence.

  • mtrueman||

    "If in one case you assign responsibility to the shooter, and not to the political opponents of the targets, you really ought to do so in the other. "

    Every act of political violence is unique. There's no reason to treat them as though they were all equal, except out of some ill-conceived attempt at 'bipartisanship,' rarely a worthy goal, in my opinion.

  • Brian||

    That's pretty much why I take a random position on everything: it's all unique. Who should expect consistency?

    Only bipartisan simpletons: that's who.

    Anyway, let's get back to designing our idealistic socialtopia for everyone.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Is this parody? I can't tell if this is parody. This is what life has come to.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    I don't think so. If you click through to his boring-ass tech blog he shows no signs of any sense of humor.

  • mtrueman||

    The joke's on you, moran.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    You're just proving my point.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    You know who else had a point?

  • lap83||

    Uncle Sam in WWI?

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    John McEnroe?

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    The Iraqi guys with the laser?

  • Vernon Depner||

    Beldar

  • Elias Fakaname||

    The Pointer Sisters?

  • Daily Beatings||

    No, they were just excited.

  • HeteroPatriarch||

    Brutus?

  • Trigger Hippie||

    You're Crissy Moran?!

    Oh, baby. Let me get them digits!

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    Mmm, Erin Moran

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Colonel Sebastian Moran's granddaughter.

  • ChipToBeSquare||

    "Moran" eh? I'll assume that was intentional but I'm still going to read everything you say in a Boston accent

  • Citizen X - #6||

    It's a reference to a meme from 2003 that casually omits the part which, by contrast with the misspelling, made the meme slightly amusing in the first place.

  • plusafdotcom||

    "Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kansas"?
    or
    this one?
    http://www.plusaf.com/homepage.....rane-s.jpg

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    He has a tech blog? Ugh, the state of technical education in this postmodern america is depressing.

  • Sevo||

    I looks once; at that time if had nothing to do with tech, other than it was on the web.
    It was a collection of trueman's 'thoughts', easily confused with pig-grunts.

  • Rhywun||

    I learned that blogspot still exists.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    In Mexico, at least.

  • Red Rocks Baiting n Inciting||

    That would explain his passive-aggressive, sperg-like comments.

  • Sevo||

    Hugh Akston|6.14.17 @ 2:52PM|#
    "Is this parody? I can't tell if this is parody. This is what life has come to."

    It's trueman; He posts inanities or the obvious in the hopes someone is dumb enough to mistake it for something profound.
    Plus, he's a lying POS; ask him to back any of his statements.

  • mtrueman||

    It's just my opinion. No need to get personal.

  • Sevo||

    As I mentioned, a lying POS who never backs a claim.

  • mtrueman||

    That's better.

  • dave72||

    New to this site, but "True" man appears to be certifiable. Bet he doesn't own a gun, much less know how to shoot one.

  • mtrueman||

    "Bet he doesn't own a gun, much less know how to shoot one."

    All true. My neighbour however sometimes lets me speak to and even touch his gun.

  • ChipToBeSquare||

    Ideological consistency maybe? Pretty sure we often see bipartisanship as evil (see Clinton crime bill, wars, entitlements, etc.). We aren't 50% Democrat and 50% Republican, constantly straddling a line to not piss off either party

    We'll know when it's so different that we should treat it differently

  • mtrueman||

    "Ideological consistency maybe? "

    I don't think it's wise to expect or demand equal amounts of hypocrisy from the Left and the Right. The Left, thanks I think overwhelmingly, to their chosen vehicle the Democratic party, has little room to act as they believe, and that opens the door for mucho hypocrisy. The Republicans have a lot more space to act according to their beliefs, it seems to me. This shuts down the need for hypocrisy. Not sure what any of this has to do with the shooting, though.

  • MarkLastname||

    That's one way to rationalize your hypocrisy.

  • ThomasD||

    What isn't unique is the left seeking to tar their opponents with the psychotic actions of paranoid nutjobs, but frankly disowning the 'unique' political violence coming from their fellow travelers.

  • OldMexican Blankety Blank||

    Sanders did not choose in this moment to stand up and denounce the increasingly violent rhetoric coming from the left wing of American politics, and appropriately so[. . . ]


    Albeit it would not be reasonable to conclude that Sen. Sanders is acting on principle especially when this shooter is the genuine article, unlike Loughner who was actually a lefty flake yet described by the media as a "right wing nut" because of his lack of ideological consistency. Hodgkinson left NO DOUBT about his political positions. Again, he's the genuine article. I'm sure he's going to be called a hero by the left.

  • mtrueman||

    " I'm sure he's going to be called a hero by the left."

    Had he been a better shot, sure. As things stand now, he's an object lesson on the value of target practice.

  • BYODB||

    I'm not really sure how to take this comment...

  • mtrueman||

    Take your best shot.

  • BakedPenguin||

    I'm not sure if that's more Pat Benetar or Ted Nugent of you...

  • Sevo||

    it's more 'random stupidity of trueman.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    As the mindless blatherings of a horrible person.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    To be fair, people on the far left are used to their targets standing still, usually blindfolded, and in the old days, with a cigarette in their mouths... but we scratch the cigarette now, for the children.

  • mtrueman||

    You need a lesson in how to shoot a ploot. Gut shots, comrade, a ploot lives through his gut.

  • mpercy||

    One of my first thoughts was that if the shooting had been a right-winger with a rifle shooting at Democrat baseball team, there'd be a lot of dead Democrats.

  • dave72||

    50 shots from 30 yards, and only 4 wounded. Thankful he was such a pathetic putz.

  • ThomasD||

    The guy was a koolaid drinking leftist. He probably believed that AR really was a death wand with a magical ability to cause death every time he pulled the trigger in the general direction of his target.

    Either that or he just hated those cans.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    One thing that would make things better is if Rand Paul shot the shooter right between the eyes .

  • HeteroPatriarch||

    Rand would never mess up somebody's eyes. Opthalmologist first and foremost.

  • Finrod||

    He already is being called a hero by the Left.

    http://therightscoop.com/disgu.....publicans/

  • Half-Virtue, Half-Vice||

    Rule 4667-A: If a shooter is a campaign volunteer for a particular representative, said representative gets "dibs" to spin first.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Well, it's only fair.

  • Half-Virtue, Half-Vice||

    Of course that's fair. I'm not saying the whole system is broke; just a great many of its parts.

  • Johnimo||

    Spin? As in "spin the revolver's chamber" before playing Russian (there they are again) roulette?

  • WakaWaka||

    http://www.washingtontimes.com.....ed-states/

    This is a disturbing piece.

    I really think that if the media and the Left had thoroughly denounced the violence being perpetuated by their illiberal peers, rather than egging them on, this situation would have never occurred. When are grown-ups going to return to our discourse? From both sides

  • ChipToBeSquare||

    He seems a bit separate from the actual Antifa (so far), but I'm curious to see what happens to the Antifa when they inevitably have their first fatal clash. I see two possibilities: they straight up murder someone during one of their riots, or a conservative with a CC permit defends himself

  • Giin||

    Antifa bike lock guy was taken in to face 7 counts of attempted murder, wasn't he? He was slamming people on the top of the head with the thing, I'm surprised there weren't fatalities already. Already seen an antifa discussion debating the merits of firearm training.

  • damikesc||

    I don't remember many conservatives wishing that Loughner --- who was a Leftie --- killed more people.

    There is no shortage of Lefties making those comments today.

  • Juice||

    Oh I remember plenty of those and people hoping that Giffords was replaced by a Republican. Crap like that. It mostly came from middle-aged evangelical christian women twitter feeds though.

  • Rhywun||

    middle-aged evangelical christian women twitter feeds

    Which circle of hell is that again?

  • Azathoth!!||

    Sure you do.

  • chemjeff||

    Yup. Now Team Red gets to have their Gabby Giffords moment.

  • damikesc||

    Except nothing about Loughner was "right wing"

    This clown? Total Leftie.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Fuck you shitbag, Laughner was one of you. They always are. That's because your side are the bad guys. There is no equivalence, and hopefully you people are brought down hard, just like you deserve. As you are all subhuman communist pieces of shit.

  • ThomasD||

    And you 'wonder' why people repeatedly call you out as a leftists?

  • esteve7||

    Whenever anyone right does something wrong, it's an implication on every right person ever, but when the left does something wrong, nothing to see here.

    For the Kathy Gifford shooting, it was by a rambling anarchist who hated both left and right, but queue all the talk about "right wing violence". Now we actually have a fucking bernie bro go out and try to kill as many republicans as he could... nothing.

    Like how we still don't really know the motive of the Orlando Shooter, but the one white guy who shot up a black church means white people everywhere are responsible.

    The left commits and encourages violence at every turn; all of the incidents since Trump has been elected as been on them. Show up to a Trump rally to bash some Trump skulls, and the media says "Violence at Trump Rally".

    Fucking Fuck

  • chemjeff||

    Yes. Lots of people have double standards. That doesn't mean we have to have double standards.

  • esteve7||

    it's not just a double standard, it's a damn lie. They lie about right wing violence --- how many "hate crime hoaxes" have there been in the last year. Then they go out and celebrate violence, at rallies, at colleges, etc.

    It's not there are equal amounts of violence from both sides, most of it is coming from one.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    We need a nationwide crackdown on progressive extremism. Put Sessions to work on something productive for a change, and get him away from the drug war bullshit.

  • Dizzle||

    The best is that dumbass girl from new York whose family tried suing nypd for embarrassing their daughter for charging her with falsifying records, etc, cuz her hate crime claims all were lies.

  • Dillinger||

    >>>For the Kathy Gifford shooting

    gonna let Regis take care of that...

  • Brian||

    It all makes sense when you realize that these people are political tribe members, who say anything to advance their own team while vilifying their opponents, and just don't have two shits to give about consistent thought or principles.

    At that point, everything's completely consistent.

  • Seamus||

    When you think about it this assassination attempt by a left-wing loon is really Trump's fault, because of something something rhetoric something divisive and othering. Just like left-wing loon Lee Harvey Oswald was driven to shoot Kennedy by the climate of right-wing hate in Dallas.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Look, if Trump hadn't colluded and influenced and RUSSIA!!!!, then there would be no need for shooting him. DUH!

  • flatdarkmars||

    "Violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society," said Bernie Sanders. Except, he presumably forgot to add, for the violence that the state will visit upon you should you fail to pay taxes, or obey its every trivial diktat.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    It'll be kind of nice to see the establishment media treat this as a random act of voilence.

  • esteve7||

    Who knows what his motivation was?

    But we need gun control, that totally would have stopped this, and he and the republicans got what they deserved for not supporting gun control

    / twitter right now

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Maybe it was self-defense because the guy might have had an illness and the GOP'ers were going to repeal Obamacare?

    (I did not make that one up)

  • esteve7||

    The left have no concept of self-defense. To them it's okay to attack people with bike-locks who were peacefully assembling; it's okay to shut down a rally because they would incite violence by the left, it's okay to prevent people from seeing a speaker on campus because they will create an 'unsafe climate' or 'hate speech' or whatever.

    But then when it comes to self defense against actual violence, they are silent. Fucking Neo-Marxist Post-Modernist pieces of shit

  • Cynical Asshole||

    (I did not make that one up)

    *facepalm* That's it! I give up. I'm done.

  • mpercy||

    Because "...We lose 93 million Americans a day to gun violence...", right Gov. McAuliffe?

  • Juanito_J_Ibanez||

    esteve7 wrote:

    "But we need gun control, that totally would have stopped this..."

    OK, esteve: tell us EXACTLY which new gun control law would have "stopped this"? And describe exactly HOW it would have worked — and do not leave out a single detail!

  • Hidebehindyourcause||

    I think he was kidding dude

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Why, when it can so easily be used to punish the Bern Unit for their intransigent and ultimately futile rebellion against Herself?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    This is one of the reasons that I visit Reason.com

    I wish Reason would call out more politicians for their hypocrisy and their voting record too.

  • ||

    nice try tulpa

  • loveconstitution1789||

    What's that Tulpa?

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    The spambots have gotten more creative in my absence. Did the old ones who earn all that money on The Internet leave in the exodus?

  • Citizen X - #6||

    No, those are still around. But this is certainly a new one.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    The deletion of the spambot's post created a delicious situation here.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    We all know loveconstitution1789 loves regaling us with tales about his cousin's sister's friend's neighbor making $38902 a week on the internet! He didn't believe it until he saw the check himself.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    We all know loveconstitution1789 loves regaling us with tales about his cousin's sister's friend's

    That and stories about his cousin Walter.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    What that Tulpa?

  • Rat on a train||

    It was delete before I could get the details. Now I will have to go back relying on the orphans in my uranium mine.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Just don't waste any money on protective clothing or decontamination equipment and your profit margins should be fine.

  • Jerryskids||

    On days like today, it's worth engaging in a little self-inventory to see how you reacted when the political violence was aimed at the opposing team.

    I can honestly say I did two seconds of self-inventorying and realized that I may very well be a hypocrite when it comes to political violence aimed at the opposing team - if this had been a Congressman shooting at members of the public I probably would have been outraged rather than simply shrugging it off as payback for years of shit-weaselry. So sue me, I'm not that concerned about a member of my team playing a little rough with the opposition.

  • BigT||

    At least you admit you are a cowardly, hypocritical, violent POS, unlike most progs who wallow in self-righteousness.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Bernie, like Trump, just says what he thinks his idiot base wants to hear.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Nope, your progtards are out of control. Time to put you down. Maybe we can start putting you all in Gitmo or something. Should be simple, as progressives aren't real Americans, or really even human, when you think about it.

  • No Yards Penalty||

    are you retarded or just bored of posting drivel at Brietbart and the Federalist?

  • Crusty Juggler - lamertarian||

    it's worth engaging in a little self-inventory to see how you reacted when the political violence was aimed at the opposing team.

    I pooped a little.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    It's different when his side engages in "violent rhetoric" because... reasons...

  • Dillinger||

    >>>congressional baseball shooter

    easier to hit them with bats...congress wrong again

  • Don't look at me.||

    Hearings and investigations to follow.

  • ||

    Of course not, he's a parasitical left-wing coward.

    This is what they are progressives.

  • One Last Caress||

    There's no they bro. It's just us.

  • ||

    This is what progressives are.

    Gulp.

    Don't shoot!

  • GILMORE™||

    congressional baseball shooter

    pretty sure this is the first time this combination of words has ever made quasi-sense

  • Azathoth!!||

    Jared Lee Loughner thought punctuation was conspiring against him. He was a constituent of and voter for Gabby Giffords. He shot her because she wasn't doing the things his psychosis was telling her to.

    What happened today is not at all the same.

    This is another Berniebro going nuts and heading out to kill.

    Note--'another'.

  • GILMORE™||

    *i'd hestiate to say "nuts"

    Laughner was crazy. Many mass shooters are crazy. This guy was not crazy, from what i can tell.

    *crazy = mentally ill.

  • ThomasD||

    It appears he had a history of domestic violence, but nothing so far indicates any sort of psychotic disorder.

    You don't get to be in your mid sixties without that sort of thing showing up (barring brain tumor or other dementing illness.)

  • Azathoth!!||

    I was referring to this guy and the Berniebro that killed people in Portland.

  • TimothyLane||

    James T. Hodgkinson committed the crime, and no one else, just as Jared Loughner and no one else committed the crime in the Gabby Gifords shooting. But Loughner was a pure nutcase who was not influenced by Sarah Palin or Rush Limbaugh or any other conservative target; to the extent that he had coherent views at all, they seem to have been leftist. In contrast, Hodgkinson was undoubtely influenced by leftist hate-mongering, just as Floyd Culkins was in the Family Research Council attack. Those leftist hate-mongers have watched a great deal of violence by their supporters without toning down their rhetoric, so it's reasonable to accuse them of inciting Hodgkinson.

  • mtrueman||

    "so it's reasonable to accuse them of inciting Hodgkinson."

    They undoubtedly talked nightly over the telephone.

  • BigT||

    "They undoubtedly talked nightly over the telephone."

    Just like Hitler. That was his strong suit.

  • Hank Phillips||

    My reaction was the same as when I watched The Three Stooges as a child: hilarity, pity and schadenfreude. The looter kleptocracy struggles to hide its depredations behind personality cults and one-dimensional Avatars of Satan measured along a straight line running from the Hitler cult to the Stalin cult. Conventional morons like Bernie, Palin, Ford, Trump, Obama, Hillary, Mitt, McCain and Bush are cardboard replacements for principled stands for or against the initiation of force to violate individual rights or wreck economic freedom. Discovering the LP and understanding the Nolan chart were satisfying and liberating paradigm shifts. Knowing small party spoiler votes were what produced all major policy changes (good or bad) these past 150 years has completely freed me to vote my conscience on platforms and principles. I now reap about 15 times the law-changing clout every time I show up to vote against coercion. I'm grateful to Reason for facilitating this most empowering experience over the years.

  • Galane||

    From the US Civil War to now, most of the violence like this in the USA has come from those with a politically leftist bent.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Time to scrape them off.

  • John C. Randolph||

    What? A geriatric commie rat bastard is a weasel? I'm shocked! Shocked, I say!

    -jcr

  • ThomasD||

    My response to this incident is the same as any other incident.

    Expect people to abide by their own rules.

    Color me shocked that Sanders does not.

    But also color me shocked that these two episode - violence committed in direct service to a person's clear, stated, and coherent (if extreme) political views vs. the across the board ramblings and paranoid violence of a diagnosed schizophrenic - are being treated as if they are remotely similar.

  • setTHEline||

    "violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society." *

    * Unless it's violence against the dirty rich capitalists by the state, obviously.

  • Headache||

    TONY... Tony... Where are you?

  • Mnemonicmike||

    Jared Loughner, though, was a dope-smoking liberal, it turns out. Something the media didn't want to report when it came out.

  • Robert||

    The Loughner pic is always soothing to me. How can you feel bad when a face like that is looking at you?

  • mondo_cane||

    If we have the courage to admit it, we will all agree that most all of the violence is coming from the left. The random acts of vicious killing are not those of the people who define themselves as conservatives. That is simply not the nature of a conservative. And no one can legitimately say they are on the right unless they are fully cognizant of the meaning of the word conservative and adhere to that behavior.

    Libertarian has a meaning, too. Is it conservative, marxist, or simply anarchy? It seems it's fitted to each person's personal style of politics. But I would argue that that is not libertarian. It is the absence of belief in a political idea.

    I fail to understand how casual references to "those on the right" can be accepted by readers of Reason or by anyone else without any explanation of the definition of "the right". Words have meanings. They cannot be tossed around to mean whatever the user wishes them to mean.

    Reason is the alleged voice of the Libertarian. But there is no meaning brought forth of what that word means, either. I see no consistent string of thought. It's sloppy thinking, inexcusable within itself, and intellectually dishonest.

  • mtrueman||

    "The random acts of vicious killing are not those of the people who define themselves as conservatives."

    Conservatives like to do their vicious killing overseas, in a uniform which they cover with shiny badges. Liberals do theirs closer to home, in recycled clothes. Lower carbon footprint, you see.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    To be fair, its not like foreign elements have not attacked Americans and the USA.

  • mtrueman||

    "its not like foreign elements have not attacked Americans and the USA."

    What's worse is when foreign elements, I'm looking at you, Carbon, I'm looking at you, Oxygen, is when these foreign elements team up together and attack our tremendous American nation.

  • ThomasD||

    You mean like in Libya? Wasn't it Hillary who proudly crowed "we came, we saw, he died" after Kaddafi was killed?

  • mtrueman||

    "You mean like in Libya? "

    Or any other poor, weakling country of the region.

  • mondo_cane||

    If we have the courage to admit it, we will all agree that most all of the violence is coming from the left. The random acts of vicious killing are not those of the people who define themselves as conservatives. That is simply not the nature of a conservative. And no one can legitimately say they are on the right unless they are fully cognizant of the meaning of the word conservative and adhere to that behavior.

    Libertarian has a meaning, too. Is it conservative, marxist, or simply anarchy? It seems it's fitted to each person's personal style of politics. But I would argue that that is not libertarian. It is the absence of belief in a political idea.

    I fail to understand how casual references to "those on the right" can be accepted by readers of Reason or by anyone else without any explanation of the definition of "the right". Words have meanings. They cannot be tossed around to mean whatever the user wishes them to mean.

    Reason is the alleged voice of the Libertarian. But there is no meaning brought forth of what that word means, either. I see no consistent string of thought. It's sloppy thinking, inexcusable within itself, and intellectually dishonest.

  • woodrow||

    how come reason doesnt take some journalists to the middle east?
    get in the fray

  • woodrow||

    if u bring a good photo journalist u can get good graphic images of what government does

  • woodrow||

    the whole middle east is like drug dealers. Dont they know fossil fuels are killing the planet? /sarc

  • Mark22||

    my shocked face: (ʘ。ʘ)

    Sanders is a socialist. Socialists tacitly endorse violence against people who oppose them, even if they proclaim publicly to be for "peaceful change". If I may channel Sanders: "Geez, if it weren't for these evil capitalists and reactionaries, then we could be peaceful; but to protect the poor, women, children, and the working class, some heads need to roll".

  • woodrow||

    haha no one gives a fuck about liberty in America. Reason need to do a doc to tell America why they need liberty. Also get in on Netflix.

  • dave72||

    Thankfully, Bernie's lefty wacko was a lousy shot with 50 shots from 30 yards. Most lefties are afraid to hold a gun, much less shoot one. If they keep asking for more violent confrontations, eventually they will lose. Badly.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Let's just get it over with and have it out with them. No more progtards.

  • No Yards Penalty||

    Better idea: gun-fetishizing Nut-Cons shoot at each other in a lethal circle jerk. With any luck a few leftardos get picked off while watching.

  • Mark22||

    Better idea: gun-fetishizing Nut-Cons shoot at each other in a lethal circle jerk.

    According to FBI statistics, that's the favorite activity of young black males.

    Nut-Cons mostly seem to shoot at waterfowl and deer.

  • XM||

    All disclaimers and caveats aside, I think it's fairly safe to conclude that most forms of political violence comes from the left.

    I came to this country in the early 90's and not 4 years later, the LA riots broke out. I still remember calling my dad on that day to ask if we could go to Mcdonalds, and his frantic response was "don't leave the house".

    I mean, the fringe of the left admits to this. It's fashionable for them to quote Malcolm X or some Chinese scholar that glorifies civil disobedience or resistance. These people are like Don Quixote - the America they see is a dark illusion, a suppressed Jim Crow era waiting for a rebirth, and a society ruled by coded and covert bias.

    So they're in a perpetual "revolution" mode and occupy school halls and freeways, flip cars and set fire to trash cans, knowing the sympathetic media and dem dominated local government will rarely hold them accountable.

  • Mark22||

    the America they see is a dark illusion, a suppressed Jim Crow era waiting for a rebirth, and a society ruled by coded and covert bias

    The irony is, of course, that Jim Crow, segregation, and eugenics were primarily programs of progressives and Democrats in the first place.

  • mtrueman||

    Al Sharpton, too.

  • Ned Netterville||

    Sancers: "...violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society." Bull! Sanders, and every member of Congress, the Executive and the Judiciary thrive on violence. It feeds them, cloths them and shelters them. Every tax law those bozos write, sign or judicially sanction includes provisions for enFORCEment, by which the IRS can and does use force, coercion, intimidation and violence as necessary to ensure the taxes the 'crats, and pols, and da judges rely on are not resisted nor kept from them.

  • John Thomas||

    So many posters here are blinded by the false left/right division. --- The only real division is between the rich and the non-rich. There is violent class war going on, but only the rich know about it. They fool the people, distracting them with Tweedle-Dem and Tweedle Repub.

    Bernie Sanders offers a way for all the poor and middle-class to leap off the one-percent merry-go-round and reclaim our government from these corrupt usurpers.

  • BigT||

    Commies gonna commie.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Its not a class war.

    Its socialists, and some happen to be wealthy, trying to consolidate power before people wake up to their ponzi scheme and prevent it once and for all.

    America is one of the last bastions of Constitutional freedoms that matter- freedom of speech, gun rights, and checks to authoritarianism via the BoR. The lefties know that this must be destroyed. America has given people hope and something to emulate, which cannot happen if authoritarians are to wield true power.

  • ThomasD||

    Take your Marxism and shove it up your ass.

  • Hank Phillips||

    See? This looter's deep philosophical observation sums up the result of spending billions of tax dollars since 1971 to brainwash morons into perceiving the initiation of force the way National Socialist Germany and Soviet Socialist Russia presented it to their captive idiots.

  • DRM||

    On days like today, it's worth engaging in a little self-inventory to see how you reacted when the political violence was aimed at the opposing team.

    I'm sorry, if that's what you're trying to do, why are you talking about Loughner? A paranoid schizophrenic lashing out about a conspiracy theory about government control of grammar is not political violence in any rational sense. The last attempt on a Team Blue federal elected official by someone with a domestic political animus was in 1994, in the case of Francisco Martin Duran.

  • ThomasD||

    Welch will play coy, but he knows exactly what he's doing - toeing the mainstream media line.

    Just like all these people did, and will continue to do. Even though Welch ostensibly is calling them out for their hypocrisy.

    http://tinyurl.com/ybhkrytm

    Just look at that list, and consider who their employers were, and often remain. The taint covers just about everyone not expressly 'on the right.' By Welch's own assertion these people should be denouncing the rhetoric of just about everyone on the left, yet we all know they will not. Meanwhile Welch will continue to treat them as credible, if imperfect journalists.

    Think of this article by Welch a variation on the standard media style - when a democrat does something terrible it's 'pox on both houses' time.

  • Bruce 6225||

    Bernie is an old Stalinist who really want's a totalitarian state. That's the result of all other 'socialist democracies' for the past hundred years. Ya think these goofy 'socialist' would read a book now and then the catch up.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Just you watch. While LIBertarians tsk in disapproval of the bloody hissing match, God's Own Prohibitionists will ramp up references to LIBeral hate speech and LIBeral terrorism, LIBeral support for Mohammedan Berserkers and LIB...eral callousness toward "our" fallen martyrs. Since the election returns of 1932, Mohammed's Republicans have nurtured smoldering hatred toward the Liberal Party's 1931 platform to relegalize light beer, wine and the Demon Rum, plus strike down Sharia Blue Laws--a platform watered and copied by the victorious Dems. This playground gangfight ambush between Democratic and Republican looters will, with proper spin, be adapted to condition voters. Preachers from the pulpit can be expected to persuade registered voters to see LIB on the ballot and instantly hallucinate cowardly anarchist attacks by Bernie's bloodthirsty LIB commies on the duly elected representatives of Ordered Liberty, Altruism, Christianity and Law.

  • Azathoth!!||

    On days like today, it's worth engaging in a little self-inventory to see how you reacted when the political violence was aimed at the opposing team.

    I keep getting stuck on this.

    When, exactly, was the political violence aimed at anything except the right?

    Political violence was aimed at the right when they were fighting slavery, political violence was aimed at the right in the aftermath when they were trying to secure civil rights for all, political violence was aimed at the right when they were fighting communism.

    I cannot think of at time when political violence wasn't aimed at the right--or when the right wasn't forced into a retaliatory position.

  • Heraclitus||

    Wow Reason, you found some Hypocrisy on the left. Real original reporting there. Now I guess we will realize that Sanders was openly calling for violence all along. This is idiotic folks. Both parties have demented followers. Finding anecdotes of this nature does not prove a pattern. That's as stupid as Hannity yelling about how all the liberals are divisive and not even being intelligent enough to notice the irony of that. I would conjecture that on a per comment basis "liberals" have a lead in self-criticism where as people more on the right tend to be less self-reflexive and think in terms of "liberals" this and "liberals" that. Note that I am not saying all of any group , nor am I saying that some on the left are not perfect. It would be nice if our media sources, like Reason, would not be so quick to infer from anecdotes. If you want to draw on single instances why not refer to Rand Paul's observation that guns are not for shooting at deer but instead at tyrannical government? He probably didn't have himself in mind. If Reason were not so biased they would probably mention that tweet and the thousands of other instances that come from the right that advocate for violence. So spare my the hypocrisy theory. Slow down and do a proper analysis without just cheering for your own team.

  • San Diego||

    So Heraclitus, do you think it's the same to caution violence, against those that would advocate violence, to achieve their political ends? Is there an equivalency there for you? And why do you equate libertarians with republicans? And when you say, " I would conjecture that on a per comment basis 'liberals' have a lead in self-criticism," why do you believe that to be true?

  • Hank Phillips||

    Keep in mind that all who call communists "liberals" are themselves descendants of 1932 sympathizers with Christian National Socialism. Imagine being stuck in a time loop that began when Congress declared war on Germany to cover for communist-infested Russia having dropped out of the good fight. No way was the brand new banking system going to write off all those loans made to Britain, France and other morphine exporting competitors of the Accursed Hun. These still waters run mighty deep. The only threat to this petrified paradigm is the Nolan chart with "too many" dimensions, inspired by that selfish Jewish woman with the silly classical liberal idea about [get this!] not initiating the use of force. Conservatism, by definition, is settled political science, by God!

  • ernie1241||

    Purely as a statistical matter, there has been infinitely more violence planned or committed by right-wing ideologues (especially gun violence) than by the left-wing during the past 30 years.

    Aside from racially-motivated violence, there has been anti-gay violence, anti-abortion doctors murdered and Planned Parenthood facilities bombed or shot up.

    Then there are the heavily-armed right-wing fanatics who seized federal property and then taunted local law enforcement officials to do anything to evict them---not to mention the Muslim mosques which have been fire-bombed.

    Recently, the conservative running for Montana's Congressional seat pled guilty to assault on someone he characterized as "a liberal reporter".

    Nor should we forget the number of occasions during the Presidential campaign when candidate Trump advocated violence by lamenting the fact that in the "good old days", protesters would be "carried out on a stretcher" .

    How about Trump's suggestion that Hillary Clinton's Secret Service detail should be dis-armed and then "see what happens" OR Eric Trump's recent statement that critics of his father are "not even people."

    For anybody who accepts the current GOP mythology about how "the left" is responsible for the climate of hate and violence in the U.S. check out: "A Dark and Constant Rage: 25 Years of Right-Wing Terrorism in the United States"

  • Blue Star||

    Did Matt Welch catch Sanders trying to tell his crowd to go ahead and attack the disrupter and that he'll pay their legal bills?

    Or is he confused that hypocrisy involves doing the things that you insist that others not do/not do the things you insists other should do?

    Merely opining differently in two different cases is not hypocrisy.

    Or are fund-raising mailers the same as public criticism.

    Matt Welch is another cock holster for the rightwing.

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