How awful! *UPDATED — OFTEN*

My sincerest condolences to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ family and friends.  What a horrible tragedy.  My thoughts are also with the others who were shot during this massacre.

UPDATE (11:49 a.m. PST):  Five seconds ago, Breakingnews.com tweeted that she might still be alive:

Update: Conflicting reports about Giffords – Reuters now reporting she’s alive and in surgery less than 5 seconds ago via breakingnews.com

UPDATE (12:29 p.m. PST):

Update: Hospital spokeswoman tells Reuters Rep. Giffords is in surgery. “She’s alive.” less than 5 seconds ago via breakingnews.com

UPDATE (1:10 p.m. PST): Having thought about all this for awhile, there are two comments I’d like to make. First, sadly, if Gifford was indeed shot point-blank in the head, being alive may not mean more than breathing — with assistance. I hope that being alive means much more, but I’ll reserve my cheers until we know what happened.

Second, speaking of knowing more, beyond knowing that the shooter was young and white, last I heard we know nothing about him. He could be (a) crazy; (b) Left wing; (c) Right wing; (d) religious; (e) irreligious; (f) a stalker without any familiar motive; and (g) none of the above. Speculation at this time is both foolish and dangerous.

UPDATE (1:11 p.m. PST):  While Rep. Gifford clings to life, US District Court judge John M. Roll has died.  My condolences to his family and friends. Also, the shooter has a name: Jared Laughner Loughner of Arizona, born September 1988.

UPDATE (1:15 p.m. PST):  Judging by his YouTube channel, choice (a), above (i.e., crazy) may be the correct identifier for Laughner Loughner.  In the 1950s, he would have been talking about Martians and mind control.  In the 1700s, he would have been concerned about witches and the devil.  This video is more evidence of his profound reality disconnect.  Also, from his YouTube site, check out some of the books that informed his reality (emphasis mine):

Books:

I had favorite books: Animal Farm, Brave New World, The Wizard Of OZ, Aesop Fables, The Odyssey, Alice Adventures Into Wonderland, Fahrenheit 451, Peter Pan, To Kill A Mockingbird, We The Living, Phantom Toll Booth, One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Pulp,Through The Looking Glass, The Communist Manifesto, Siddhartha, The Old Man And The Sea, Gulliver’s Travels, Mein Kampf, The Republic, and Meno.

UPDATE (1:59 p.m. PST): And even as credible evidence emerges that the gunman was a loony toons (see above), MSNBC is out of the gate with an article that strongly suggests that the forces arrayed against ObamaCare are behind the shooting. What makes this article even sleazier than its lack of any factual foundation is the fact that, at the end, after having waffled on about threats to Dems — threats that went nowhere, although the writer doesn’t say so — the writer, in a disingenuous display of non-evenhandedness, mentions that Republicans complained about violence too, but adds that their complaints were invalid. This is sleazy, drive-by journalism writ large.

UPDATE (2:27 p.m. PST):  My liberal friends on the “real me” facebook, people I know through school, work, and community, are already implying or saying explicitly that Loughlin’s crime is tied to “right wing” thinking.  Who needs facts?  Who needs reality?  Who needs logic?  They’re ideologues, and their doctrines will see them through anything.

UPDATE (3:08 p.m. PST)Tweets from someone who claims to have been a classmate of his, and who may or may not be a reliable source.  These tweets, if true, show that Loughner’s mania was fed from the Left side of the political spectrum.  (H/t Sadie)

UPDATE (9:28 p.m. PST):  If my facebook is a guide, the Left is indicting Sarah Palin as the shooter’s inspiration.  Some are explicit.  Some are a little more discrete, and refer to the dangers of hate speech.  Next time one of the liberals makes a comment about “hate speech” (with the obvious implication that the hate emanates from the Right), agree with the liberal, coyly adding that the killer seemed to be inspired by Obama’s statement that, “If they [his opponents] bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun.”

UPDATE (9:38 p.m. PST):  Yeah — what Michael Ledeen says about the massive amount of misinformation emanating from the media, much of it irrationally hostile towards conservatives.

UPDATE (9:41 p.m. PST):  The British paper The Daily Mail has a surprisingly good hodge podge of info about Rep. Giffords and about the shooting generally.  That paper is a rag, but it’s a quality rag, if you don’t mind the oxymoron.

If you’re interested, others blogging about this are:

The Anchoress

Ace

Ed Morrissey

Ed Driscoll

American Thinker

Michelle Malkin

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  • Oldflyer

    Largely ignored by the media in the focus on the Congresswoman, it has just been reported on TV that a Federal Judge was shot and killed. The cryptic remark was made that he has recently taken some controversial decisions.   No amplification.   So, it is not clear who, if either, was the target.
    Apparently she did have a heated campaign for re-election this fall.  Although she criticized the federal government for not doing enough oun the border, She opposed and, has reportedly publicly  criticized, the Arizona immigration law.  I am sure we will hear more about that.
    I saw on TV that more irresponsible bloggers have already started to point fingers in one direction or another.

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  • Danny Lemieux

    If this goes according to script, the MSM and Democrat/Left establishment will blame conservatives and, more recently, Tea Party Activists  (Washington, D.C. Holocaust Memorial shootings, Times Square bombing attempt, Oklahoma City bombing, IRS plane attack in Austin, etc.), the perp will eventually be determined to be a radical anti-American activist with Leftwing or Jihadi sympathies whereupon the MSM and Democrat /Left will become mysteriously silent.
     
    Yes, in fact, the MSM and Leftwing Democrat manage to remain religiously silent about virtually every act of violence emanating from the Left, which from what I can tell represents most acts of political violence today. Their minions, of course, will continue to spew and blather the original news reports as if they were fact. Damage done.

  • SADIE

    “I don’t think people ought to believe only one news medium,” Walter Cronkite told an interviewer during the Republican Convention. “They ought to read and they ought to go to opinion journals and all the rest of it. I think it’s terribly important that this be taught in the public schools, because otherwise, we’re gonna get to a situation because of economic pressures and other things where television’s all you’ve got left. And that would be disastrous.”
     
    The Boys on the Bus (1972)

  • SADIE

    Bookworm:
     
    A tweet page from a classmate confirms (g) and (h) all of the above.


    http://twitter.com/caitieparker

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    I can assure people that if it was an operation done by right wing militia type groups, targets wouldn’t be alive.
     
    Inefficiency is a characteristic more in tune with solo operations or ideologically driven cults.
     
    I would be interested to know what this “conscience dream” class he said he studed in college was all about. If this was in any case related to Liberal Art cuckoo classes like gender studies, it would be a good tie in.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    I’m amused by people’s special interest in the mind of a killer. It’s like they crave any knowledge about what would motivate a person to do such things. I have no such curiosity. My questions had long ago been answered in full.
     
    The Left uses people’s special interest and obsession with violence to the Left’s advantage. Tens of thousands die from LibProg policies, but nobody pays attention to them. A spectacular incident, however, is fuel for their fodder. They use it to create more casualties. Such is evil sustained and not simply recognized immediately and dispatched.
     
     

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  • http://furtheradventuresofindigored.blogspot.com/ Indigo Red

    I’ve a Liberal friend on my FB. She is a professor at a Los Angeles university. She all but bluntly stated the shooting was the fault of Sarah Palin. For some reason she thinks she will get much support. I comment in opposition and then there’s a whole string of her friends who support my position.

  • SADIE

    Indigo Red –
    The ‘left’ is never short on vitriol and a bad case of the uglies. When the finger pointing is put to rest, which it will be, they will still blame Palin or the Tea Party. Anyone, who saw the videos or who read his rants, would know that the murderer was not playing with a full deck.
     
    But neither is Krugman…..


    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/01/08/assassination-attempt-in-arizona/?src=twt&twt=NytimesKrugman

  • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

    Next time one of the liberals makes a comment about “hate speech” (with the obvious implication that the hate emanates from the right), agree with them, coyly adding that the killer seemed to be inspired by Obama’s statement that, “”If they [his opponents] bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun.”

  • http://www.americanfront.wordpress.com Scott D

    Let me add myself to the outraged.  Outraged at a senseless act of violence, and outrage at the handling of this entire situation by the media.

    I sat in front of the TV all afternoon and watched as news station after news station (INCLUDING Fox News Shepherd Smith) either implicity implied or explicitly accused tea party activists of being at the root of the attack.

    As these accusations continued to be mentioned on air, these same media outlets were completely inable to answer the traditional “who, what, where, when, why” questions.  Not that we had much of an actual independent media left, but for me, this was yet another level of embarrassment as far as their performance goes. 

    My prayers to go out to the victims and their famililies. 

  • Danny Lemieux

    “”If they [his opponents] bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun.”
    Perfect, Book, absolutely perfect. I will use this.
    One comment that I like to make is that virtually all the political violence that has happened in America as come from people associated with the Democrat and/or the Left. Why is that?

    John Wilkes Booth (anti-Republican Democrat)
    Southern night riders and the KKK during Reconstruction (Democrats)
    McKinley’s assassin Leon Frank Czolgosz (Leftwing Anarchist)
    John Kennedy’s assassin Lee Harvey Oswald (Communist)
    Robert Kennedy’s assassin Sirhan Sirhan (Leftwing Palestinian supporter)
    Students for a Democratic Society (SDS)
    Puerto Rican terrorist group FALN (communist)
    Black Panthers (Left-wing socialist/communist)
    James Jones of Jonestown fame (apostolic socialism)
    Earth Liberation Front (ELF)
    Attack on Washington, D.C. Holocaust Memorial by James Wenneker von Brunn (anti-U.S. Socialist)
    Attacks against Tea Party rallies (2009).

    Does anyone care to challenge, amend or add on to the list?
    Or, let’s have even more fun: how about a comparable list of CONSERVATIVE acts of political violence?
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

  • Tonestaple

    I’m a little surprised I’m not seeing the obvious explanation here:  the shooter is 22 years old.  People in his college classes said he was behaving oddly, and he was suspended until he got a satisfactory mental evaluation.  I smell schizophrenia.

    In keeping with the theme of these comments, though, I will point out that the comments appended to a reader blog on the Seattle P-I were absolutely deranged.  One person started listing all the acts of right-wing terrorism including the Fort Hood shooting, Oklahoma City, and the anthrax mailings after 9-11.

  • Mike Devx

    Sadie said in #10:
    > When the finger pointing is put to rest, which it will be, they will still blame Palin or the Tea Party.

    The establishment Left currently views two things as major threats to their cultural dominance  of America: Sarah Palin and the Tea Party movement.

    It doesn’t matter what explanations they offer.  They are primarily about Power and Control, and they view these as the major threats to their power and control.

    Hence: Sarah Palin is responsible for the shooter!  The Tea Party is responsible for the shooter!

    Whenever anything bad happens, you will see them immediately blame Sarah Palin and/or the Tea Party.  They will vilify her and the movement, simultaneously ridiculing them as well.  They do this with only one purpose in mind: To break the threat, to program the American People.  Sadly the media – our wonderful lamestream media – is completely on board with this.  They are not objective journalists; they have sold their souls and are part of the liberal establishment.  They are complicit and guilty as well.

  • kali

    I am grabbing both Book’s and Ymar’s arguments and heading over to my livejournal account . . .

  • SADIE

    One person started listing all the acts of right-wing terrorism including the Fort Hood shooting, Oklahoma City, and the anthrax mailings after 9-11.
     
    A typical comment from those who do not know their ‘left from their right’. No surprise that any real give attempt to shed clarity on a topic ends up in a circular argument.
     
     

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    They’re ideologues, and their doctrines will see them through anything.

    Faith alone is enough to determine the truth. For them. Isn’t that so, Book.

    Nice edge there, Book. it should, indeed, cut deep into their psyche. Cognitive dissonance is uncomfortable and that is why they ignore it. But if they cannot ignore it, it becomes crippling pain.

    The obvious thing people don’t get is, if Sarah Palin can cause people to die because she has an army of crazies, sorta like Islam, why are the Left so unafraid to speak badly of Palin but is quite willing to shut their damn mouths on the topic of Mohammed?
    If she has such power, why hasn’t she used it to get rid of the media reporters, like islamic Jihadists did to Theo Van Gogh? A little stab into the heart is good enough for an infidel, and more than good enough to shut up the Hollywood fauk tards. So why isn’t it good enough for them when it comes to Sarah Palin? Unless.. they were just making that claim up out of whole cloth, that Palin had such power.