Even as the early, sketchy details of the shooting incident in Arizona were still emerging some members of the left-leaning media were already trying to tie the killer to Tea Party activism in general and Sarah Palin in particular.
Andrew Sullivan of the Atlantic.com was early to attempt to link lunatic killer Jared Loughner to the Tea Party, but he wasn't the only one. The Washington Post's Sandhya Somashekhar immediately attempted to color the story as an example of the "militant rhetoric" of the Tea Party movement and Sarah Palin.
Liberals on Saturday blamed the tea party movement's sometimes militant rhetoric -- for example, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin's advice to her supporters via Twitter, "Don't Retreat, Instead - RELOAD," or Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle (R) advocating "second-amendment remedies" for some of the nation's problems. Palin had also posted a U.S. map depicting crosshairs over the states where she hoped to oust Democratic incumbents. That map no longer appears on the Web site of her political action committee.Additionally, within minutes of the attack, hard left-winger Paul Krugman of the New York Times asserted that the reason Giffords was shot was because her seat was not turned over to Republicans. Despite that no political motive was at all known, Krugman immediately asserted that it was the fault of the Tea Party and Sarah Palin.
On his DailyDish blog for the Atlantic, Andrew Sullivan posted an unconfirmed and anonymous claim from "a reader" who claimed to have heard people in a store callously saying that they were glad that a Republican could be appointed to replace the wounded Giffords. This "reader" also claimed that one of them said, "Well, that’s to be expected when you’re so liberal."
Sullivan's disgusting attempt to smear conservatives went on even as it was emerging that the killer's ideology seems incoherent and not legitimately anchored in the left or the right.
Sullivan's next idiotic attempt to smear the right was to conjure a connection between a campaign photo for Jesse Kelly -- who is a Marine and was Gifford's opponent recently -- to using "violence" to further his political career because his campaign photo showed Kelly as a Marine holding his M16.
How many political candidates hold an automatic rifle in their open crotch in order to demonstrate their ideological bone fides? The conflation of conservatism with the willingness to use violence depressingly deepens.Then, when this hack finally noticed that the killer's book list included the Communist Manifesto and Hitler's Mein Kampf, Sullivan tried to back track a bit saying that Loughner was, "Not exactly a Tea Party purist."
Not exactly a Tea Party purist? Not a Tea Partier at all, more like.
But Sullivan wasn't the only left-wing media figure to immediately connect this crime to those on the right and to assign a conservative political motive to the killer's actions.
The extreme website Talking Points Memo also jumped into the blame Palin game by pointing out the Palin PAC target image without mentioning that the DailyKos and the DNC also used the same imagery. As the good folks at Verum Serum noted back in March, Giffords' district was marked with a target on the webpage of the Democratic National Committee during the late midterm elections.
There’s more. CNN's Piers Morgan also immediately tried to equate Sarah Palin to this incident. On his Twitter feed Morgan linked Palin's political action committee work from months ago to this shooting saying, "This now deleted image from Sarah Palin website will be reason this terrible shooting has huge political ramifications." The image was Palin's map of the U.S. that showed states where incumbents were vulnerable for challenge, the image used to identify those states contained a target motif. Morgan was trying to equate a political campaign to an act of murder.
Another left-leaning website agreed with Morgan that the Palin campaign image was somehow relevant to an action taken months later by a man not obviously connected to any political campaign. These leftists are trying with all their might to link Palin to this crime despite the fact that there isn't a shred of evidence at this time that there is any connection whatsoever.
Yet, even as Sullivan, Morgan and their pals tried to smear Sarah Palin with this attack, they correspondingly ignored the DailyKos website that went on a deletion binge trying to wipe away all the foul attacks by its members on Gabrielle Gifford.
One DailyKos post, originally seen at this address, said that Gabrielle Gifford was "dead to me." The headline of the piece read: "My CongressWOMAN voted against Nancy Pelosi! And is now DEAD to me!" The posting went on to complain about Giffords. Tellingly, DailyKos has sent this post down the memory hole.
Not only that, but Kos himself said that Gabrielle Giffords was on a "target list" of politicians he wanted to get rid of. Naturally, the Sullivans and Morgans of the leftward Old Media have ignored this fact.
Then there is Hollyweird. Anti-American, hatemonger and Hollywood Actress Jane Fonda went even farther than those mentioned above. Hanoi Jane took to Twitter and directly blamed the Tea Party movement and Sarah Palin. Fonda, a well-known supporter of America's enemies, wrote: "@SarahPalinUSA holds responsibility. As does the violence-provoking rhetoric of the Tea Party." Fonda also wrote, "Glen Beck guilty too. Shame. It must stop!"
So, what can we make of the killer's politics? Not much at this point, really. A YouTube video that Jared Lee Loughner posted is a rambling mess of a manifesto that is practically incoherent. The video consisted of text only and read as follows:
Hello, my name is Jared Lee Loughner.Laughner's now removed MySpace page listed some of his schooling.
This video is my introduction to you! My favorite activity is conscience dreaming: the greatest inspiration for my political business information. Some of you don't dream - sadly.
Firstly, the current government officials are in power for their currency, but I'm informing you for your new currency! Of you're treasurer of a new money system, then you're responsible for the distributing of a new currency. We now know -- the treasurer for a new money system. is the distributor of the new currency. As a result, the people approve a new money system which is promising new information that's accurate, and we truly believe in a new currency. Above all, you have your new currency, listener?
Secondly, my hope s for you to be literate! If you're literate in English grammar, then you comprehend English grammar. The majority of people, who reside on District 8, are illiterate -- hilarious. I don't control your English grammar structure, but you control your English grammar structure.
Thirdly, I know who's listening; Government Officials, and the People. Nearly all the people, who don't know this accurate information of a new currency, aren't aware of mind control and brainwashing methods. If I have my civil rights, then this message wouldn't have happen.
In conclusion, my ambition -- is for informing literate dreamers about a new currency, in a few days, you know I'm conscience dreaming! Thanks you!
Schools: I attended school: Thornydale elementary,Tortolita Middle School, Mountain View Highschool, Northwest Aztec Middle College, and Pima Community College.In another video Loughner claims to be a military recruit at MEPS in Phoenix and is upset that mini Bibles are being given to recruits. The Army has since reported that Loughner was rejected in 2008.
Interests: My favorite interest was reading, and I studied grammar. Conscience dreams were a great study in college!
Movies: (*My idiom: I could coin the moment!*)
Music: Pass me the strings!
The killer goes on to say:
In conclusion, reading the second United States Constitution, I can’t trust the government because of the ratifications: The government is implying mind control and brainwash 0n the people by controlling grammar.This man is obviously an anti-Christian, anti-government, conspiracy nut with anti-federal reserve ideas and delusions that he knows all and sees all the "brainwash" going on out there. This man is mentally ill and his ideas are mixed up between left and right with obvious paranoia underlying it all.
No! I won’t pay debt with a currency that’s not backed by gold and silver!
No! I won’t trust in God!
What’s government if words don’t have meaning?
Tea Partier? Hardly. Yet the far left Old Media insists on making of him a conservative, Tea Party member despite the facts.
Whatever the final facts are that we find out about this crime, the early assumptions by the Old Media linking this incident to conservatives is irresponsible.
Warner Todd Huston is editor of Publius' Forum and a contributor to Texas for Sarah Palin as well as Big Government, Right Wing News, and a number of other websites.