The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Obligatory Post-Massacre Finger-Pointing Scapegoating Blame Game Open Thread

Posted on | August 6, 2012 | 34 Comments

“Both CNN and Fox News cut away when the U.S. Attorney took the stage and launched a lengthy speech which sounded like an Obama campaign speech. . . . Politics never is far behind a mass shooting, unfortunately.”
William Jacobson, Legal Insurrection

Mainly, I’ve tried to keep my focus on aggregating facts about the Oak Creek shooting as quickly as possible:

There was a brief period last night, after I saw the Twitchy post about the insane reaction of lefties — “Michele Bachmann did it!” — where I indulged in some sarcasm at the expense of such fools. Even that, however, felt a little cheap and inappropriate, so I tried to dial down the snark. Permit me to point out what I did not do: I did not flinch.

When I first logged on to gather information about this crime, I saw a quote from one of the survivors at the Sikh Temple who called the shooting a “hate crime,” and I made that the title of my post. When the police chief said at the press conference that the shooting was being investigated as “domestic terrorism,” I added that to the title. When the shooter was identified as an Army veteran, I blogged that, and when he was ID’d as a neo-Nazi skinhead, I blogged that, too.

The timid defensiveness of some conservatives — who run away screaming the minute they hear the word “racism” spoken aloud — is the exact opposite of political wisdom. Having been so often and so unfairly accused of “hate,” they have internalized their liberal antagonists’ worldview to such a degree that they pre-emptively fear the smear:

“Oh, let’s denounce the crime, then move on and ignore it, because we might be targeted with a guilt-by-association smear attempting to connect us with this tattooed skinhead freak we never heard of until he killed six people.”

Not only is this reaction gutless — needlessly defensive — but it makes conservatives look like shameless political opportunists: If the guy who killed the Sikhs had been an Occupier or an Islamic jihadi, the right-wing blogosphere would have been raising hell. So when the shooter turns out to be somebody categorized as a right-winger, conservatives are not going to score any points for integrity and courage by whining that this is unfair and then trying to ignore it.

When the Left does this, we automatically notice it, don’t we?

Liberals were all up in arms in September 2009, screaming that the Tea Party had lynched a Census worker in Kentucky, until I drove to Kentucky and started reporting that this suspicion wasn’t justified by facts on the ground. When it eventually turned out that the Census worker had committed suicide and faked it to look like murder, the Left said nary a peep about their earlier misguided accusations about Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and Michele Bachmann.

Something similar occurred with the Tucson massacre in 2011: The Left jumped up and down pointing the finger at Sarah Palin. Then, when it developed that Jared Loughner was a left-wing dopehead obsessed with the 9/11 Truther conspiracy-theory “documentary” Zeitgeist, the liberal media suddenly lost interest in the political dimension of the shooter’s motive. “Just a random schizo,” the media sniffed, and pretended they never cared about Loughner’s politics.

So if conservatives slink away in silence after the Oak Creek massacre, we’ll look like a bunch of insincere punks. In truth, we have nothing to fear. I’m pretty sure there is nothing in the Republican Party platform that endorses the random shootings of people who wear turbans, so what the hell is all this scaredy-cat defensiveness about?

Anyway, having tried to restrain any urge toward political pontification in previous posts about this incident — waiting, at least, until we had some firm biographical details about the shooter — now I’m willing to relax a bit and see what folks have to say. I’ll update to aggregate commentary elsewhere.

UPDATE: Speaking of guilt-by-association, it has become unfortunately necessary to link to a disreputable publication quoting a disreputable source. The New York Times:

Officials at the Southern Poverty Law Center said they had been tracking Mr. Page for about a decade because of his ties to the white supremacist movement and described him as a “a frustrated neo-Nazi who had been the leader of a racist white-power band.”
They said he played guitar and sang vocals for a band started in 2005 called End Apathy.
“This guy was in the thick of the white supremacist music scene and, in fact, played with some of the best known racist bands in the country,” said Mark Potok, a senior fellow at the center. “The music that comes from these bands is incredibly violent and it talks about murdering Jews, black people, gay people and a whole host of other enemies. It is music that could not be sold over the counter around the country.”

The SPLC, of course, has spent the past 15 years irresponsibly lumping together criminal freaks like this skinhead hate-metal dude with law-abiding conservative political activists. I’m pretty sure that the Sikh religion is as “anti-gay” as some of the family-values groups tarred with the SPLC’s “hate” label.

UPDATE II: Michelle Malkin:

I’ll leave the vulgar politicization of this evil massacre to others. The usual suspects are in full-blown Blame Righty Syndrome mode. They are as ghoulish and galling as the disgusting Westboro publicity hounds.

Click here to make a donation to help the victims’ families.

UPDATE III: In case you forgot, the blame-game drumbeat in September 2009 became so loud and incessant that Michelle Malkin finally confessed: “I killed the Kentucky Census worker — along with every conservative in America.”

UPDATE IV: Bill Quick at Daily Pundit: “At least he didn’t use an evil assault weapon.” Yeah, but you notice that the media makes sure to use the scary-sounding phrase “semi-automatic” every time they refer to his pistols, as if the victims would be slightly less dead if he would have used revolvers or a sawed-off shotgun.

This was one of my pet peeves about the media coverage of the 1999 Columbine massacre: Both Harris and Klebold carried 12-gauge shotguns, and Harris’s pump-action shotgun was the main cause of death in the school’s library. There was no public demand for a shotgun ban, however. Notably, the slaughter at Columbine High took place while the misnamed 1994 “assault weapons ban” was in effect, but this law did nothing to prevent Harris from getting a 9-mm Hi-Point carbine or Klebold from getting an Intratec 9-mm pistol.

Ordinary weapons firing ordinary ammunition — nothing exotic or illegal — and yet the victims were just as dead.

Maybe we should pass a federal law against evil.

UPDATE V: Mollie Hemingway at Ricochet notes that the major media were “somewhat cautious” in their reporting on this shooting, in contrast to the blatant irresponsibility of ABC News in blaming an innocent Tea Party activist for the Tucson massacre.

UPDATE VI: Linked by Bob Belvedere at The Camp of the Saintsthanks!

BTW, did you know that the shooter, Wade Page, was the product of what used to be called “a broken home”? And broken more than once, too. The Associated Press interviewed Page’s ex-stepmotheri.e., his father’s second wife, whom his father has subsequently divorced. That divorce has helped drive the downward mobility of working-class families over the past 40 years is one of the points made by Charles Murray’s most recent book.

However, it’s impossible to cite Murray’s research without being accused of racism — excuse me, RAAAAACISM! — and therefore the problems Murray addresses don’t get fixed.

When some broken and desperate soul commits a heinous crime like this, we aren’t supposed to mention how it relates to the Great Unraveling of our society, which continually gets worse because it is unacceptable to suggest that what is nowadays called “Progress” looks suspiciously like decadence.


34 Responses to “Obligatory Post-Massacre Finger-Pointing Scapegoating Blame Game Open Thread”

  1. richard mcenroe
    August 6th, 2012 @ 3:16 pm

    J’ACCUSE… okay, help me out here.  Somebody stand in front of my finger.

    Agreed, we have to call out and confront the lefties when they try to pin this crap on us and our beliefs.

  2. smitty
    August 6th, 2012 @ 3:19 pm

    I’m blaming Gilgamesh, for insufficient efforts at instilling pacifism in Babylon, the effects of which we feel today.

  3. Mortimer Snerd
    August 6th, 2012 @ 3:43 pm

    Gilgamesh?  I blame the Professor and Mary Ann!

  4. EarlScruggs
    August 6th, 2012 @ 3:55 pm

    Nazis and racists are not of the Right.  Think some guy with a Stormfront tattoo is thinking Romney should be President?  Hardly.  

    Haven’t seen this supposed “move on” business from the dextrosphere – names?  

  5. robertstacymccain
    August 6th, 2012 @ 4:04 pm

    I’m watching the aggregations at Memeorandum: Left-wing blogs are piling onto the neo-Nazi skinhead angle, while those on the right … well, not so much. It is a slight but noticeable flinch reaction, and one that bugs me.

  6. Wombat_socho
    August 6th, 2012 @ 4:29 pm

     Looks pretty simple to me. Lefty blogs see this as a handy stick with which to beat on conservatives. Conservative blogs don’t see it that way.

  7. Mortimer Snerd
    August 6th, 2012 @ 4:43 pm

    “Maybe we should pass a federal law against evil.”

    Can’t do that.  It would discriminate against bad people!

  8. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    August 6th, 2012 @ 4:52 pm

    You mean had they gotten it on we would not be in this mess?  

  9. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    August 6th, 2012 @ 4:54 pm

    I know this pisses off Charles Johnson, but they are the National Socialist Party.  

    But you know something, this sums it up for about 99.99% of us.  

  10. Zilla of the Resistance
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:07 pm

     Nazis were National SOCIALISTS (that’s a lefty thing, as is antisemitism, BTW), neonazis heart those guys, supremacist ideology and racism have been standards of the left ever since there was a right and a left, that’s why the left backs islamic supremacists, because they are totalitarian birds of a bigoted feather feather – that they scream that the supremacist fanaticism is somehow a conservative thing is actually nothing more than the left’s projection of their own vile hatefulness onto the people they want to destroy.
    Remember which party was always (and still is) the party of oppression towards black people, and which party fought against that oppression.  Things ain’t what the left says they are, and anyone who spends ten minutes researching outside of self referencing leftist sources can find that out for themselves.

  11. JeffWeimer
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:11 pm

    This struck me odd earlier (bolding mine):

    End Apathy began in 2005 and the concept was based on trying to figure
    out what it would take to actually accomplish positive results in
    society and what is holding us back. A lot of what I realized at the
    time was that if we could figure out how to end peoples apathetic ways
    it would be the start towards moving forward. Of course after that it
    requires discipline, strict discipline to stay the course in our sick
    So, in a sense it was view of psychology and sociology. But I didn’t want to just point the finger at what other people should do, but also I was willing to point out some of my faults on how I was holding myself back. And that is how I wrote the song “Self Destruct”.

    Then I realized it reminded me of this:

    Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you
    shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out
    of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you
    push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never
    allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed.

  12. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:12 pm

    We could outlaw assholes too, but that would be like prohibition (unworkable).  

  13. DaveO
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:16 pm

    The headlines and stories tie “Army Veteran” to “Hate Crime” and that’s the story. The sikhs and the dead are props.

    It took me a while to discover, deep, deep down in the story that the killer had left the Army between 1999 and 2000 after being busted from Sergeant/E-5 to Specialist/E-4 for being drunk. In those days, E-5s could come up hot for alcohol, THC, and other drugs and still stay in after time in ADAPC and a rehabilitative transfer – so the killer must’ve been a real screw up back then.

    Seems every massacre story, except the shyte coming out of Democrat cities, is blamed on veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, and conservatives.

    Almost like it’s a script coming from DHS.

  14. DaveO
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:17 pm

    and Democrats.

  15. DaveO
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:18 pm

    Worse: the SPLC may actually be correct this time.

    Blind pigs… acorns…

  16. DonaldDouglas
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:28 pm

    From No More Mr. Nice Blog:  

    “Unfortunately, a la McVeigh at al., the MSM won’t for the most part draw the connection between this killer on the one hand, and the whole hate-thy-political/cultural/religious/racial-enemy toxicity that has permeated the Right’s rhetoric for decades, on the other hand. I personally think the connection is indisputable and glaringly obvious, but so what?”.


  17. Zilla of the Resistance
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:33 pm

    Neonazis have far more in common with islamic supremacists than they do with anyone on the right, just like Hitler’s Nazis who they so admire. Hitler had lots of help from muslims, you know, and islamic supremacists today still openly admire him. Iran is the Farsi word for ARYAN; before getting acquainted with the Nazis, Iran was called Persia, they changed the name because they really admired Hitler and the Nazi platform, which of course included annihilation of the Jews, which is something that is advocated heavily in the koran. Islamic supremacists love Nazis and leftists love islamic supremacists –  they all dig the totalitarianism as a common bond. SO…
    If the media ghouls want to pin this massacre on Conservatives, well, we should be holding up mirrors for them. 

    The neonazis endorsed the occupooper movement, not the TEA party, by the way. Someone should tell Brian Williams or one of those other Obamedia sock puppets about that.

    Just sayin’.

  18. W. J. J. Hoge
    August 6th, 2012 @ 5:53 pm

    There you go again–insisting on facts! Don’t you remember what Homer Simpson said? “Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that was remotely true.”

    What about all the important stuff that can’t be supported by facts? What would happen to the narrative if it had to fit the facts?

  19. Speaking of Old Fashioned News Reporting … | hogewash
    August 6th, 2012 @ 6:03 pm

    […] advantage. That’s one of reason why I appreciate the spin-free, fact-based reporting that Stacy McCain has […]

  20. Zilla of the Resistance
    August 6th, 2012 @ 6:17 pm

     Righty bloggers SHOULD be piling onto the neonazi angle, because as has oft been noted, supremacist ideology such as nazism and neonazism, and their hallmark antisemitism, is LEFTIST.
    And the KKK came from the DEMOCRATS, in case anyone has forgotten.
    The targets of this horrible slaughter were Sikhs, who along with Jews, are hated by islamic supremacists, islamic supremacists align themselves with nazis, nazis are of the left (that the word nazi is an abbreviation of National SOCIALIST should be a freaking clue for people)… why is this so hard for people to understand?
    Conservatives need to stop cowering when leftist jackals point their grubby fingers at them for shit they had nothing to do with, stand the fuck up and point the hell back at those vile hateful lying freaks! They wanna play the freaking blame game? Fine, then let’s put the blame for past and present atrocities where it freaking belongs – ON THE LEFT.

  21. Quartermaster
    August 6th, 2012 @ 6:53 pm

    And Republicans (RINOs at the very least). And the SPLC…

    You know, we just might be able to make this work.

  22. Sikh Shooting: Don’t Buy The Leftist Lies « The Camp Of The Saints
    August 6th, 2012 @ 7:48 pm

    […] Page was a Leftist and those timid and weak souls who are willing to cede the field to the Left.  Stacy McCain describes the latter very well: The timid defensiveness of some conservatives — who run away screaming the minute they hear the […]

  23. J.M. Heinrichs
    August 6th, 2012 @ 8:00 pm

    Has anyone checked to see how Senator Reid could have been involved in the planning and execution of this ‘incident’?


  24. Bob Belvedere
    August 6th, 2012 @ 8:02 pm

    Good one, Jeff.

    Leftists all sound the same.

  25. richard mcenroe
    August 6th, 2012 @ 8:10 pm

     If the Professor and Mary Ann had got it on Gilligan would have gone on a three-hut magnum coconut rampage…

  26. richard mcenroe
    August 6th, 2012 @ 8:12 pm

     Nothing set the lefties off before the 2004 election more than my sign pointing out the Democrat and KKK positions on Iran were identical…

  27. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    August 6th, 2012 @ 8:50 pm

    The facts are the facts.  If the shooter is a Neo Nazi, how does that affect us.  I am not a Neo Nazi.  You are not a Neo Nazi.  RSM, Smitty, and Wombat are not Neo Nazis (Wombat can be rather prickly about his “rules,” but he is no Nazi).  

  28. SDN
    August 7th, 2012 @ 12:02 am

     Not if you use the original definition of outlaw, which basically amounted to open season no bag limit.

  29. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    August 7th, 2012 @ 2:30 am

    If something bad happens, Harry Reid is likely to blame in some way.  

  30. Adjoran
    August 7th, 2012 @ 3:08 am

    You misjudge the SPLC.  They don’t “track” or “monitor” anyone or anything beyond cobbling together scary-sounding fundraising appeals.  The internet search engine means Deese can probably cut down on all actual staff except one researcher and someone else to look semi-professional and stand with him at press conferences.

    Deese did luck out by filing a lawsuit against a KKK group three decades or so ago and put them out of business.  Ever since, he has traded on the fears, prejudices, guilt, and pocketbooks of wealthy white liberals by manufacturing a way they can “help defeat extremists.” 

    I give the guy full credit, he’s got one of the sweetest scams ever.  The mental defectives in the lefty media automatically call him for comment on any story involving any sort of white supremacist or neo-nazi extremism, he’s quoted by them all, then uses the quotes in his next fundraising appeal.

  31. Tennwriter
    August 7th, 2012 @ 9:28 am

    Good points, ya’ll.

    I don’t have much to add, except to wish a halfp-dozen folk had concealed carry pistols in the crowd

  32. McGehee
    August 7th, 2012 @ 10:00 am

    Indeed. SPLC isn’t an anti-hate group that raises funds, it’s a fundraising group that uses “anti-hate” as its marketing strategy.

  33. Red
    August 7th, 2012 @ 12:53 pm

    Assholes have a use. I use mine everyday 😉

  34. Blame Ozzy « sitting on the edge of the sandbox, biting my tongue
    August 8th, 2012 @ 1:51 pm

    […] RS McCain has the following to say about the attempt to pin the crime on the right: The timid defensiveness of some conservatives — who run away screaming the minute they hear the word “racism” spoken aloud — is the exact opposite of political wisdom. Having been so often and so unfairly accused of “hate,” they have internalized their liberal antagonists’ worldview to such a degree that they pre-emptively fear the smear: […]