Hit And Run Compares Arizona Rampage To…..Wait, Hit And Run?

Michael C. Moyhnihan produces a whopper of a tale, with all sorts of paranoid and incorrect blamestorming, hours before Obama told people like him to just stop it. Witness the insanity: The Assassin Who Would Save America from the Extreme Right

If political rhetoric can inspire murder, then it follows that those issuing warnings about the current “tone” in American discourse—those breathless invocations of “eliminationists” acting like “Brownshirts” and “fascists,” those warning that the Republic is heading towards Weimar—could provoke the mentally unstable left-wing types, right? Now, I don’t buy this argument either way, but when do warnings about the revolutionary intentions of the Tea Party or those who say the American government has been hijacked by Maoists and syndicalists and Bukharinists also count as dangerous incitement? Well, never. But let’s play this game anyway (everyone else seems to be doing it, after all), and look for an example of a hyperpoliticized assassin attempting to save America from an impending far-right dictatorship.

So, he doesn’t buy it all, but, he is going to tell us why he does buy it, and, now, go back and rewrite time

We needn’t look very far.

At his blog, Andrew Sullivan offers, without comment, a contemporaneous passage from historian William Manchester describing the political climate in the months before the 1963 assassination of President Kennedy—Swastikas daubed on Jewish stores, “radical Right polemics” showing up in schools, mainstream liberals being accused of harboring Red sympathies, and Dallas as “the mecca for medicine-show evangelists of the National Indignation Convention, the Christian Crusaders, the Minutemen, the John Birch and Patrick Henry societies.”

Except, they were harboring Soviet Communist sympathies. That’s been proven, no matter what Liberals want to say. Facts are facts. But, it’s really cute that Oswald, a die-hard Soviet commie, who traveled to and lived there, shot Kennedy because of the right wing. Anyhow, Allahpundit tears the whole story apart, so, I shan’t. What I will say is “Hit and Run”? That’s a rather threatening and violent blog name, is it not? It evokes images of mayhem and destruction, assault and battery, and could cause someone to act out their fantasies. In fact, I blame the blog for the attempted murder by hit and run of Katherine Harris. And the guy who tried to run over people at the University of NC at Chapel Hill? Hit and Run’s fault. Obviously, the blog header incited the Muslim to go crazy. And any attempted or completed hit and run will be their fault.

So, perhaps Reason should rename the blog to something cute and fuzzy, less violent and threatening, lest they incite someone with their left wing discourse, because sane people will obviously not understand the context.

As a sidebar, I didn’t hear all of Obama’s memorial speech, but, what I did hear, I thought was very good. Though, he missed an opportunity to stop the memorial from being a pep rally, which had already started under previous administration speakers. Still, good speech. Presidential. And, regarding the toning down of the discourse, he needs to practice what he preaches.

*And, yeah, for those who are dense (read “liberals”), of course it is sarcasm regarding Hit and Run.

Crossed at Right Wing News and Stop The ACLU.

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18 Responses to “Hit And Run Compares Arizona Rampage To…..Wait, Hit And Run?”

  1. Kevin says:

    To be honest, I read his article and he is all over the place. The premise is out of touch to begin with. I haven’t heard anyone with a soapbox that is actually saying political rhetoric can inspire murder. I’m not saying it can’t. I would say that Hitler pretty well convinced an entire nation to commit murder. However, I don’t know of any reasonable person in the media that is saying violent political discussion needs to be stopped because the crazies don’t know the difference and will latch onto it.

    The conversation that I have been hearing is that this incident is the result of one man and his decisions. But, it also would be a good idea, since we are now focused on this, to stop vilifying each other. One moment in the Presidential election that sticks out in my mind is when McCain and Obama were in a town hall type meeting. A woman accused Obama of being an Arab, and McCain took the mike and defended Obama saying he was not an Arab and that he was a family man that McCain just happened to disagree with, but he emphasized the point that Obama was a good man.

    There has always been backtalk in politics, but that incident shows that it is possible to have an opponent but still be on the same team. After all, it isn’t really right and left, we are all Americans. In Tucson, without knowing the political slant of a complete stranger we can express our frustration with what has happened because basically, we may disagree politically, but we are on the same team.

    Of the people whom I have taken the time to listen to their complete statements:

    – Olberman never accused the rhetoric, but advocated it is still worthwhile to calm it down.

    – The Sheriff in Tucson said the kid was to blame and mentally unstable. He also went on to say separately that the vitriol is getting worse and in his 40+ years in law enforcement he can’t remember it ever being this bad. He was advocating that we take a look at how we communicate and decide the direction we want our country to move in. You can accuse the Sheriff of abusing his time with the camera to push his agenda, but you can’t say that he said the rhetoric caused the kid to start shooting people. He tried to be very clear on this.

    Their statements have been taken out of context. I listened to everything they actually said, and it varies greatly from what the news is reporting. I don’t know, maybe <strong>I am missing the point. I’m sure there are people that are trying to tie this directly to the rhetoric, but I haven’t heard them yet. Maybe because anyone that would do that is someone I wouldn’t give my attention to begin with.

    I will give you this. I cringed when people were cheering. It just seemed disrespectful, but then again, that’s what happens when you have an event at a University. I’m going to assume that many of the people there were students that didn’t know the meaning of solemn. I think the students didn’t really understand what the tone of that event should be. The cheering also may have been somewhat cathartic however inappropriate.

    Being in Tucson right now, I can tell you there is a tension you can cut with a knife. People are leaving flowers and lighting candles at all hours of the day in front of Gabrielle’s office, and less so at the site of the shooting. (That is mainly due to the fact that police have blocked off the area.)

  2. Adobe Walls says:

    @ Kevin they started off with a blessing from a witch doctor were should one expect it to have gone from there? Obama doesn’t have any credibility on toning down partisan rhetoric.
    Olberman demanded that all on the Right opologize for their dangerous rhetoric. I watched Saturday’s and Sunday’s news conferences and Sherif Dupnik did blame the shootings in part on the partisan rhetoric and on Republican opposition to the “good things” the Democrats are trying to do for the country.

  3. gitarcarver says:

    Sorry Kevin, but you are missing it. Here is a partial transcript of an interview Dupnick did with Megyn Kelly on Fox News:

    KELLY: It is clear to you that Gabrielle Giffords was his target for whatever reason.

    DUPNICK There’s no doubt about it. We’ve done enough investigation in conjunction with the FBI that there is no doubt in our mind that it was the act of a single, very troubled individual.

    KELLY: Sherrif… why? I mean I almost feel silly asking the question because you know, as I said, who can explain the mind of someone like this. But in your investigation, was there something about Congresswoman Giffords that set him off?

    DUPNICK There are a whole lot of people in this country that are very angry at the politics of people like Gabrielle. There was a lot of vitriolic statements made, night and day, on radio and tv, about her support of health care – about her support of some of the other things. And some of the vitriol got very, very…. a lot of people agitated. But you took the words right out of my mouth. You talk about irrational behavior here and there is no way that I know that you can rationalize irrational behavior.

    KELLY: I want to ask you about that because it is something that you have mentioned in the past couple of days and I just want to ask you if there is anything that you have uncovered in your investigation so far that suggests this suspected killer was listening to radio or watching television and was in any way inspired by what he heard or saw?

    DUPNICK: Well, I know that there had been some contact with Gabrielle Giffords in the past. We have, as a matter of fact, a letter from her that was dated in 2007 where I don’t know what prompted that particular letter where she had agreed and invited him to a similar event back in 2007 so there is some history.

    KELLY: Right. He, according to the criminal complaint, he had shown up at one of the Congresswoman’s events and then there was a letter following up I guess in response to that – some correspondence. But what I am wondering is, do you have reason to believe that this particular suspected killer was taking in information or was in any way influenced by the vitriol or the rhetoric that you are referring to that has been out on the airwaves.

    DUPNICK: If your question is specific then I have to be specific and say that I don’t have that information, yet. The investigation is in its initial phases but my belief, and I have been watching what has been going on in this country for the last 75 years, and I have been a police officer for over 50 years, there’s no doubt in my mind that when a number of people, night and day, try to inflame the public that there’s going to be some consequences from doing that. I think it is irresponsible to do that.

    KELLY: Sheriff, it sounds like you are being very honest and saying that’s just your speculation and not anything that is fact based.

    DUPNICK: That just my opinion. Period.

    Source: http://www.mediaite.com/tv/megyn-kelly-takes-on-az-sheriff-clarence-dupnik-over-his-political-spin-on-shooting/

    There are a couple of things to note here: 1) He admits his feelings on the rhetoric are his opinions and not fact based, yet that is the first thing that he says when asked as to what caused the shooting.
    2) He believes that they will find that the rhetoric contributed to this incident.

    You say you might be missing it. You are. You have a cop who is offering speculation instead of facts. You have a cop looking for a predetermined cause rather than allowing the facts take him to any conclusion.

    I can’t remember any time that I ever heard a policeman or police spokesman ever say something so opinionated when asked about a case.

    Good cops don’t do what he did.

    You may be happy with him but I would be scared to death of a cop that let his political prejudices and opinions drive an investigation into anything.

    It should also be noted that Dupnick say he would not enforce SB1070 if passed because it was a “just a stupid law.”

    People talk about cops thinking they are above the law. Well, Dupnick is an example of one.

  4. captainfish says:

    Don’t forget that the next day he came out and placed blame upon Rush Limbaugh.

    In an interview with ABC News’ Diane Sawyer, Dupnik said: “The kind of rhetoric that flows from people like Rush Limbaugh, in my judgment he is irresponsible, uses partial information, attacks people, angers them against government, angers them against elected officials, and that kind of behavior in my opinion is not with consequences.

    “The vitriol affects the [unstable] personality that we are talking about.”
    Also on Monday, Dupnik said on CNN’s “Parker Spitzer” news program: “It’s my opinion that the hard right is deliberately fueling the fire against elected officials and the administration because they think it benefits them in the election process.

    Limbaugh “is a master at this type of diatribe. He inflames people against people like me, against Democrats and liberals, and this benefits the other party.”

    “It’s my feeling that the anger that’s being purveyed by people in radio and some on TV is done deliberately because it benefits one particular party.”
    Dupnik acknowledged that accused shooter Jared Loughner “is a very troubled individual.”

    But he added: “You’re talking about a person who is unstable to begin with, and they are motivated in some cases by the rhetoric they hear and see.
    “In general terms I think that people who make a living preaching hate, to hate the government, to be angry at the government, to destroy the government, to do it to elected officials and so forth, have some responsibility even though it may be free speech.

    And stated that there was no doubt in his mind that “rhetoric” influenced the shooter.

    Hey Teach, I thought Oswald acted out on the part of South Chilean aborigines? I thought there was a consensus on that?

  5. Kevin says:

    Thanks for the clarification. I must have only seen part of the press conference, and I was not aware of the interview the next day.

    I will see that having lived in Tucson, the American Indian blessing is fairly common. I’m not going to fault Tucson for doing what is culturally the norm here, but I will fault the cheering in the stadium.

  6. gitarcarver says:

    I’m not going to fault Tucson for doing what is culturally the norm here,…..

    I won’t fault Tucson for doing what is culturally the norm, but I will fault the man giving the blessing for calling attention to himself and his heritage.

    The program was a memorial to the shooting victims. It was not about the cultural heritage of a speaker.

  7. Kevin says:

    I would agree with you that seemed off, and I don’t know anything about how these blessings are supposed to be done. But, I have seen two of them in my stay in Tucson and both speakers did that. Also, he apologized for it more than once, and said, that it was the tradition to start a blessing in that way. I think he understood it would be taken out of context, but he couldn’t go against the native tradition and not give his “credentials” first. If it is part of the blessing and he was asked to do it, then he couldn’t leave it out.

    This is speculation on my part, but maybe this goes back to an oral tradition where you cite where you came from before being allowed to bless anything. It makes sense to me, but again, I am not a Native American and I don’t know. I have to defer to his knowledge of the ceremony.

  8. Adobe Walls says:

    What was inappropriate was not having the done by a religious leader. Having a witch doctor made a mockery of what should been a solemn occasion. This multicultural side show is one of the reasons that it’s impossible to see the whole sorry spectacle as anything other than a campaign event. Perhaps to achieve some diversity they should have had someone impersonate Buffalo Bill.

  9. Kevin says:

    Sorry, not gonna agree with you there. First off, he is not a witch doctor, maybe try to be a little more respectful of other cultures.. Second, I guess you are not from Tucson and have no insight into the culture here or you would not be saying that.

    You are beginning to sound like a bigot. What religion would you choose, the one that you subscribe to? Is that the only correct one in your narrow view of the world? Perhaps you are forgetting that we are a diverse nation and have always been. Besides, the Native Americans were here first and make up a large percentage of the population here. There are over 1/4 of a million Native Americans in Arizona. Why is that inappropriate to have a traditional Native American blessing?

    Maybe you missed it, but he had to get permission from his elders to even do this blessing. I don’t know about you, but I call that honoring people. It would be amiss if Arizona left that out of the memorial, they are very much a deep rooted part of the culture here.

    Like I said, in Tucson, this is completely apropos. Again, stop making everything political. Obama was asked to come speak, he didn’t invite himself. If a Republican President was asked, I would hope they would come too.

  10. captainfish says:

    Hi Kevin,
    When I lived in the Olympic Peninsula of Washington, I became fully encompassed with Indian tradition. Just about everything they do in the area is done with the blessings of the spirits. The sending out of the fleets at the beginning of the season is done with an Indian Traditional Blessing.

    I did not watch or read the person’s comments that led the “prayer”. However, if that is traditional for that city, that area, then who are we to complain. But, hey, Adobe, from what I heard at least they did have the Christian Pastors there. Didn’t they read passages from The Bible? (heh) What more do you want? You have elected political leaders reading passages from The Bible in full endorsement of what they despise.

    What I have a problem in all of this is….. the seemingly incessant need for the Feds (and the Pres) to become involved in every local issue. This was a local tragedy and the Pres and our elected Federal leaders should not have gotten involved. At all.

    Now, the president could have made a statement from the Oval Office about the rhetoric and the loss of innocent lives, but to throw himself and the other Dems in to the public limelight on top of the grief of these families? DISGUSTING!!

    The media attacks Palin for “placing her front and center in the limelight” when she only responds to vicious and libelous attacks against her. Yet, they give this Pres and the Dem leaders a pass for actually DOING SO!!! DESPICABLE!!

  11. Kevin says:

    Captainfish, Yes, Janet Napolitano’s speech wasn’t so much a speech as an entire relevant passage from the Bible. The man that came after her did the same thing. Obama also quoted the bible.

    If it didn’t involve a U.S. Congresswoman then I could see why it should remain local. But the attempted assassination of a U.S. Congresswoman is a national issue. Had this not been an assassination attempt, then I seriously doubt this would have received national attention. The feds are there because of the nature of the crime. This is very much a federal issue.

    Honestly, I listened to the Presidents Speech. It was thoughtful and appropriate. Obama went out of his way to avoid making this political. The only thing inappropriate was the cheering, but it was held on a college campus. Many of those students are not even from Tucson, so they don’t have a real connection to what happened.

  12. Kevin says:

    Finally, and then I really have to get off this… After some thought, I don’t even mind the cheering. There is nothing that says you can’t mourn and laugh at the same time. It was somewhat Cathartic, and that’s what Tucson needed. I.e. Irish Wake, New Orleans Funeral, etc…

  13. captainfish says:

    Hello Kevin,
    I understand and in most cases I agree. I would want MY funeral\wake\memorial to be a lively one. Remembering me for the jovial fellow I was, not for the absence. However, those are usually agreed upon before hand, or announced as such.

    However, for myself, this was not a memorial but a campaign stop for the Pres and Dems. The T-shirts, the rousing of the crowd by the pres, the cheering and exclamations of the crowd to “political” aspects of the Pres’ speech, the cheering of the crowd when the Indian Prayer Guy got up and stated he was a Mexican…….. all tell me this was a political event.

    If not, then someone should have stood up and said, “Please have some respect for the families”.

  14. Kevin says:

    I can see your point and I have often thought of how I would feel if I didn’t live here. Having lived in several different places in my life, I can tell you that Tucson is a very different environment from most other places. I can also tell you that for Tucson, this was appropriate and fitting. Just hearing the input from people in grocery stores to conversations on the street, residents felt it was a moving and welcome event. This is telling, because Arizona is overwhelmingly a conservative state. It is amazing that Gabrielle Giffords has even maintained her seat in this environment.

    I can’t argue with your opinion, after all, it is your opinion and I can respect that. I can speak to a few points though. The fact that they cheered to him being a Mexican is probably because there is a massive population of Hispanics here. They make up a large portion of the economy, yet are vastly underrepresented. I also didn’t see anything political about the speech. Don’t get me wrong, I can see how parts could be interpreted politically. Obama spoke about the divisiveness that has occurred as a result of this event, but he didn’t blame sides and he did what a leader should do, which is call for restraint. If he didn’t address the blaming of sides in this memorial I think he would have been amiss.

    Finally, I can’t speak for the families. But given that they are from Tucson, if they agree with the majority of residents here, then they did not see it as disrespectful. I think you have to be very careful when commenting on the cultural habits of an area. Tucson has struck me as strikingly close knit. It is a large city that has managed to maintain a small town feel. I don’t know how to describe it, but people treat each other very informally. More so than anywhere else I have lived.

  15. captainfish says:

    Glad to hear that Kevin. And thanks for the input and info on Tuscon. Sounds a whole lot better than life in Phoenix or towns south.

    As per the other statements, and yes I think we have mashed this horse to pulp now,… that since a Federal Representative was shot, that this allows the Pres and Fed leaders to become involved….. This was a memorial for those fallen. Am I right? Rep Giffords was shot but she is not dead. She was shot. To me, this does not merit the presence of Feds at a memorial for the fallen AZ people. She was shot, thus only the justice department and the FBI are to be involved. It is a legal matter and not a “presidential” matter.

    Is it a nice touch? Sure. But, I am sick of the nice touches of this president constantly getting involved in local politics and issues. Every time he does, he shows the true liberal\true statist that he is. I know he can’t help it as it is his nature. It only confirms in me the desire to see a shrinking of the role of gov’t in our lives.

    Anyway, I think the floor is now fully covered in glue. 🙂

  16. Kevin says:

    Oh right, we had FBI and cops swarming the place, so when you mentioned federal involvement I thought you were referring to the investigation and not the memorial.

    President Obama was invited to come to The University of Arizona. I think that is a pretty hard thing to say no to as a politician. I think Bush would have certainly done it as well. Imagine the backlash when the media finds out that a President declined an invitation of this sort.

    Yes, you are right, it was a memorial although, locally it was billed as a call for unity and to express remorse. I can’t even begin to think about it, she was shot in the head, it penetrated one side of her brain from back to front. It is a miracle she is alive, and her recovery so far seems nothing less than miraculous as well. For me, what it comes down to is that it wasn’t necessary for him to be here, but it was definitely appreciated.

    When Obama came to town the first person he visited was Gabrielle Giffords in the hospital. She was not responsive, but he visited her. They knew each other personally, so maybe there was something personal that motivated the visit.

    Phoenix is pretty dirty, many of the people that work there drive from Tucson. Nogales is a war zone. Tucson is okay at the moment, but the infrastructure seems to be falling to pieces.

  17. captainfish says:

    If He was asked to attend, as well as the other Dem leaders, then yes, he should have gone. But I seem to recall that the push for him to say something, to be there, started the day after the shooting. That this was now his opportunity to have a moment for his presidency. And then on Monday I believe the talk started of a memorial.

    I just don’t recall talk of him being invited to a memorial that was planned without him. To me, given the number of Fed Dem leaders leading the memorial, the emphasis on the Pres in the memorial, the T-shirts, tell me that this was all built around him (maybe by his administration) and for him.

    But, like the Sheriff says, this is just my gut feeling and I have no evidence. I defer to you.

    And yes, her surviving and recovery are a miracle. She is now sitting up and soon will be able to sit in a chair unassisted. It would seem she is still under the effects of the coma drug to some degree since she is only responding to commands and not actively conversing, but that is still a major miracle. I am just saddened that more people there couldn’t have been granted their own miracles.

    Be safe there Kevin. I fear the dangers of the border are creeping further and further north as we relinquish more and more territory.

  18. Kevin says:

    Yeah, it was Monday that the invitation was accepted. From what I understand they asked on Sunday. The T-shirts were given to the people in the front rows and were provided by the University. None of this really matters though.


    http://www.uanews.org/node/36874

    I am just saddened that more people there couldn’t have been granted their own miracles.

    Completely agree with you there. Gabe Zimmerman was the nephew of a friend of mine.

    Finally, and then I promise I am done responding… I don’t plan to stay here much longer. My wife is getting an advanced degree at the University and then we are leaving Arizona. The nature of my work allows me to go anywhere at any time.

    I don’t know how common this is, but Tucson issues a crime map every morning at 8 a.m. They advertise it as an offering to help citizens prevent becoming a victim of crime. They advise that you check it each morning. I live in the mostly safe area, which is a joke, because that area is also the same area the shooting happened.

    Anyway, thank you for all of your thoughts. It’s nice to know that while our viewpoints differ, we are still in tune with what actually matters.

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