The Law of Unintended Consequences

Thanks go to RHT….

“The recent rash of mass shootings has left the nation stunned but, sadly, not speechless. The usual media and political suspects are saying the usual things, using the bodies of the innocent as a sickening ideological soapbox.

We’re not going to do that here. These gruesome murders are not about, nor caused by, politics. Rather, they are the unavoidable and perhaps unstoppable product of a deeply diseased culture. A culture which has become the perfect growth medium for psychopathy.

“Loners” are no longer alone when in their online worlds. They can communicate without actual human contact. They can find reinforcement for their darkest and most twisted thoughts and fantasies. They can give the worst demons of their psyches an artificial, external life in cyberspace – free to express hatred and anger anonymously and without consequence. And on the Internet, madness can hide in plain sight.

After all, who’s going to notice or care about garden variety insanity in a world which routinely describes everyone as murderous: baby killers on one side, Earth-destroying Nazis on the other. The stakes are absolute, the “other” is the enemy, and words are just words…until they become actions.

The social mechanisms which formerly prevented these massacres have crumbled. The bonds of family, friendship, and faith. A shared sense of community. Optimism about the future. Moral certainty and personal responsibility.

Instead, we now live in a crowded world of communal loners, all staring at their phones instead of the world and people around them. Politicians and media figures preach an unsubtle and dangerously divisive message of absolutes: you are either on this side or that, either all good or all evil. There is no middle ground – only calls for action. Calls that the wrong people are hearing.

We live in a culture in which too many feel they have no meaning or importance, but believe that one spectacular act of madness can give them the instant celebrity which defines success in a sick society. And so they kill to feel alive. To experience an illusion of power at the expense of the powerless. And even knowing the likelihood that they will be killed during their heinous act, they believe they will live eternally in the electronic ether, washed in the blood of the sacrificed.

Gun control can not and will not change any of this. The phenomena of mass shootings is, in fact, unstoppable absent a wholesale change in our culture, our way of life, and our society’s unhealthy obsession with an inhuman and inhumane electronic world.

The good news is that the vast majority of people still retain values strong enough to keep them morally centered in our crumbling culture. The bad news is that unless those values can regain cultural dominance, and unless we can replace combativeness and angry confrontation with honest conversation, mass murder will continue to be our inescapable new normal.”



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43 Responses to The Law of Unintended Consequences

  1. Peggy says:

    The NY Times changes headline after pressure from presidential candidates and threats to cancel subscriptions. Attempting to bring the country together met with another act to create more division and strife.

    Original headline – “TRUMP URGES UNITY VS. RACISM.”

    Altered headline – ‘“ASSAILING HATE BUT NOT GUNS.”

  2. Chris says:

    These gruesome murders are not about, nor caused by, politics…“Loners” are no longer alone when in their online worlds. They can communicate without actual human contact. They can find reinforcement for their darkest and most twisted thoughts and fantasies. They can give the worst demons of their psyches an artificial, external life in cyberspace – free to express hatred and anger anonymously and without consequence. And on the Internet, madness can hide in plain sight.

    After all, who’s going to notice or care about garden variety insanity in a world which routinely describes everyone as murderous: baby killers on one side, Earth-destroying Nazis on the other. The stakes are absolute, the “other” is the enemy, and words are just words…until they become actions.

    This is self-contradictory. The writer says it’s not about politics, then explains how the Internet is full of political division and extremism that is making the problem worse.

    The first sentence is wrong but the descriptions of how this extremism festers online are dead on. I wish he’d name the ideology: it’s white nationalism, which was responsible for almost every extremist killing in the US in 2018. Cloudflare dropping protection of 8chan, a white supremacist site used by the El Paso shooter and many others, was a very good first step in combating the extremism this article describes, but it is hardly sufficient when disturbed and isolated people can get the same type of validation from the president’s Twitter feed or Tucker Carlson’s nightly show. Social media sites should do more to stop Nazis and other extremists from gathering on their sites, but our leaders and those in the mainstream media must do more to call out the type of racist, dehumanizing and xenophobic rhetoric that is all too common these days.

  3. J Soden says:

    Should be required reading for each and every member of Clowngress!

  4. Peggy says:

    El Paso didn’t upload his manifesto to the internet.

    “Sorry for the inconvenience, common sense will prevail.”

  5. Libby says:


    Jack, the El Paso shooter espoused EXACTLY the sort of anti-Hispanic stuff that you post here REGULARLY.

    I can see where you would not want to face it … but it’s baldly apparent to the rest of us. And we are really very uncomfortable about you and your gun collection.

    • Post Scripts says:

      Libby that is unacceptable and low. In no way is anything I write remotely close to that crazy shooter. Shame on you.

      • Harold says:

        Well my friend, you have simply identified the problem, it’s Libby and her cronies.

        Now if the solution to extinguish this flaming hate were as simple as those expressing it.

      • Chris says:

        You have, in fact, referred to immigration as an “invasion” many times. Here are only a couple examples:

        This is exactly how the shooter saw the situation.

        I have warned you many times that this kind of rhetoric is dangerous. An “invasion” warrants a violent response…and that’s what this shooter did. His actions and his manifesto prove that I was correct. But you never did let proof get in the way of your feelings.

        • J Soden says:

          What else would you call masses of Illegals clamoring to cross our border and wanting free food, housing, education and medical care while waving a flag of another country other than an “invasion?”

          • Chris says:

            I call them people looking for a better life and seeking the American Dream. An “invasion” implies some sort of military force. But I’m glad to see you agree with the El Paso shooter. I’d like to say I thought better of you, but unlike my feelings toward Jack, Tina, and Peggy, I’ve never once expected anything more from you.

      • Libby says:

        I’m sorry Jack, but you need to take a good, long look. I can’t make you, but you need to.

        Your MS-13 obsession is not healthy, your propensity to conflate such doings with those of your garden variety illegal is also not healthy.

        And you have no earthly use for all that firepower. You can collect stamps.

    • Chris says:

      What in God’s name?! Jack, you’re really going to allow the denizens of this blog to descend into false flag, “staged” murder conspiracy theorism…and you’re gonna say nothing about it…while condemning Libby and me for pointing out that it’s bonkers?

      You want your blog to be no better than InfoWars?

      Do something!

      • Post Scripts says:

        Chris, my job for the last 14 years has been to provide a free speech podium to those who stay within the guidelines set by the Enterprise Record. If our ER editor does not object to the comments I won’t either. Sometimes people will write things we don’t all agree with, but this is what free speech is all about. I’ve taken my fair share of written abuse, but I am still here and my ethics remain the same, let people vent so long as they play by the rules.
        I don’t have the time to reply to every post, that I leave to others like yourself, if you wish.

        • Chris says:

          I don’t ask that you censor the dangerous fake news RHT posted, Jack, I ask that you condemn it. He is literally claiming that people who were murdered were not actually murdered. That is sick. You find the time to object to tons of stuff Libby and I say that is less objectively wrong than this. But you let your friends off the hook for far worse behavior. It looks bad, and it helps your movement look bad. And that’s hard to do any further when your movement is literally led by a deranged conspiracy theorist. I want to believe there is still good within the conservative movement but your tolerance for conspiracy theories and racism is becoming too much. I’m an outsider so I don’t have any power to change this. You do.

        • Harold says:

          WOW, that’s some out of the blue irony in Chris’s statement of ‘I have warned you many times that this kind of rhetoric is dangerous. ‘

          Chris, If you feel people are not paying attention to you, your way of dealing with others on this board is the problem. We have asked you numerous times to be more civil, but you just ignore those requests. So I If you feel people are not paying attention to you, you only need to look in a mirror to find the problem.

          We all have different views, but that’s what make for improvements, especially through compromise

          You may not prefer for your own reasons the use of the word “invasion” however is not wrong using it in the context of describing the rise of illegally entry into America via our Southern borders.

          PC or not, it is correct, and to suggest some sort of military force, even if it is a one of three definitions, it is out of context.

          As defined in Webster, “Invasion”

          1) An instance of invading a country or region with an armed force.

          2) An incursion by a large number of people or things into a place or sphere of activity.

          3) An unwelcome intrusion into another’s domain.

          Last, your comment about RHT post, which really fired you up it seems.
          ‘He (Mike Adams) is literally claiming that people who were murdered were not actually murdered.’

          Totally out of context, but they are your thoughts, not his, nor his words. Adams was thought provoking on some points, and hopefully if nothing else could help lead to a more through analyst of the carnage that took place in El Paso.

          So much is still coming forth, we should all wait and see

          • Chris says:

            I’m almost always civil. I have never seen you call out Pie Guevara, who actually is uncivil. So you are mistaking “civility” for “telling me, Harold, what I want to hear.”

            The only definition of “invasion” that immigrants could meet would be number 2, but even then, their numbers are nothing we can’t handle if we let them come in legally and streamlined the process. And again: “invasion” warrants a violent response. If you are calling it an invasion, you are, whether you mean to or not, justifying the kind of violence against the “invaders” that this deranged shooter acted on. I again beg you to think about what you’re doing, as I beg you to think about what you’re doing by promoting and legitimizing conspiracy theorist weirdos like the one in RHT’s video.

  6. Chris says:

    The original headline was bad and the second one is somehow even more nonsensical.

  7. Chris says:

    A new Trump campaign ad prominently features QAnon signs waved at one of his rallies.

    But there is no problem with Trump mainstreaming and validating fringe extremist views. Whoever could think such a thing?

  8. Chris says:

    Jonah Goldberg responds to Tucker Carlson’s insane denial of the problem of white supremacy:

    “If Trump apes these talking points, it’ll be awful for the country and devastating for Trump’s presidency.”

    Why is Goldberg wrong?

    • Chris says:

      Guess who loved Tucker “Gypsies are Coming to Get Ya” Carlson’s monologue about how white supremacy isn’t real? Why, the nation’s leading white supremacist, David Duke:

      “”Tucker is RIGHT!” Duke wrote. “White Supremacy is a ZioMedia Conspiracy Theory! The term is itself a lie. Millions of White activists are NOT ‘supremacists’ We seek NOT to oppress or destroy any race! Human Rights for all – EVEN FOR WHITE PEOPLE! Stop antiWhite racism!”

      What is the difference, at this point, between Duke and Carlson? Both of them explicitly oppose immigration because they don’t want demographics to change further–they want whites to remain the dominant majority in the US. They have both been very clear on this point. How can you support or defend that? Carlson has got to go.

  9. Peggy says:

    Democrats and the media continue their attacks to hurt more people for political gains.

    ‘Lives Are At Stake’: Scalise Rips Castro For Posting List Of Local Trump Donors:

    “House Minority Whip Steve Scalise rebuked Democratic Texas Rep. Joaquin Castro on Tuesday for tweeting out a list of Trump donors and their employers in the San Antonio area.

    “People should not be personally targeted for their political views. Period. This isn’t a game. It’s dangerous, and lives are at stake. I know this firsthand,” Scalise wrote on Twitter. Scalise was shot in the 2017 attempted mass assassination of Republican congressmen and nearly died.”

  10. Peggy says:

    Did you blame Obama for Sandy Hook? Nope.

    Did you blame Obama for Pulse Nightclub? Nope.

    Did you blame Obama for the Charleston Church shooting? Nope.

    Not a single person blamed Obama for the 24 mass shootings that happened during his administration.

    What changed? Obama 2.0 (Hillary) failed.

    Conservatives fire back at Obama, say he sowed the division that led to Trump:

    • Chris says:

      Peggy, I asked you to explain how Obama is responsible for the Pulse nightclub shooting before and you didn’t answer. Can you please show me how Obama’s rhetoric targeted the intended victims of that shooting in the same way as Trump’s rhetoric has targeted Hispanic immigrants, the intended victims of the El Paso shooter?

      While you’re at it, can you show where Obama’s rhetoric targeted the intended victims of any of the mass shootings that happened under his administration?

      The claim that Obama “sowed division” is based on the fact that he was a black president who talked about racism against blacks. That’s literally it. In order to believe that Obama was more “divisive” than Trump–a man who has targeted so many groups and never apologized for it–you’d have to believe that condemning racism is more divisive than actually engaging in racism. And what would that make you?

  11. Peggy says:

    ‘Pure Evil’: Sister of Slain El Paso Couple Blasts Local Dems for Not Welcoming Trump to their City:

    • Chris says:

      Trump used his hospital visit to once again lie about his crowd size relative to Beto’s, lie about what Sherrod Brown and Deputy Mayor Nan Whaley said about his visit, and most bizarrely of all, lie about Brown, who has never run for president, being a“failed presidential candidate” who polled at 0%, all while calling those he was lying about “very dishonest people.”

      And it’s “pure evil” to not want a guy like this to visit in the wake of a national tragedy?

      As I said to More Common Sense the other day, Trump cares about no one but himself. He does not have empathy. He is always the biggest victim, and uses even a tragedy like this to make himself feel more important while bashing his political enemies. This has, of course, all been proven by many of Trump’s actions in the past–remember him boasting about now having the tallest building in New York days after 9/11?–so I don’t expect anyone who hasn’t accepted that wealth of evidence before to suddenly accept it now. But I will keep pointing it out and providing evidence despite your stubborn refusal to accept it. This is too important to give up. The oval office is occupied by a noxious man who lowers that office nearly every time he addresses the public–which, because of his pathological need for attention, is almost every day–and I’ll start respecting that office again the moment someone better–which includes nearly every other Republican–occupies it instead.

  12. Chris says:

    Michael Savage shares Tucker Carlson’s anger over Trump’s weak condemnation of white supremacy. Let’s break it down:

    I was very disappointed in the president attacking white supremacy.

    Who would be disappointed in that, other than a white supremacist?

    He is now saying everyone who is concerned about the illegal alien invasion is a white supremacist?

    Of course, Trump didn’t say that. But yes, Michael, if you believe people coming here to work and live is an “invasion,” you are a white supremacist.

    He suddenly has joined who? He’s like Jake Tapper now, and the rest on CNN. That was a mistake, Mr. President. I am sorry. That is going to cost you thousands, if not tens of thousands of votes.

    This part is possible, since white supremacists tend to vote for Trump.

    Listen again to the big mistake Donald Trump made today by not listening to the right people, not having wise men around him, but having fools around him.

    I thought he surrounded himself with the best people?

    SAVAGE: Do you understand what he just said? He has now combined racism, hatred, what else did he say? Condemn racism? We all agree with that, on all sides by the way, including Hispanic racism, Hispanic bigotry, of the type espoused almost daily by Occasional Cortex [Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.] Muslim bigotry, Muslim racism must be condemned.

    “Minorities are the real racists!” George Wallace agreed, as do white nationalists today.

    There’s a lot of this on all sides, it must be condemned. But then to single out and say “white supremacy” when the Toledo shooter, the motive is not even known yet. He shot his sister.

    There was no “Toledo” shooter. Trump accidentally referred to Toledo instead of El Paso the other day, and apparently it confused Michael Savage moreso than usual. The El Paso shooter’s motive is, of course, known–he was trying to stop the Hispanic “invasion” that Savage and Trump often rant about. The guy that shot his sister was the Dayton shooter, and his motive is unknown.

    The first one? OK yes, he was out to get Mexicans. He was insane.

    He was insane, and he was a white supremacist, as were most of the politically motivated terrorists in the US over the past few years. White supremacy is a problem. Anyone who wants to deny this is either a white supremacist, or is afraid to lose the white supremacist vote. Savage is both.

    • Libby says:

      “There was no “Toledo” shooter. ”

      And on the lighter side:

      A bit fanciful, but who knows …?

      • Chris says:

        Just this past February, in a speech to various assembled governors during a “White House Business Session,” Trump took some time to mock Chinese President Xi Jinping’s aides for wearing glasses.

        It gets lost in all of the debates over whether Trump is a racist or a criminal, but what cannot be denied is that Trump has the mentality of a mean third grader. I almost wonder if conservatives prefer it when he’s called a racist or a criminal, because they can add as much plausible deniability as they want, whereas no one can marshall an argument that he doesn’t constantly behave like an idiot child, and that’s just considered normal now.

      • Harold says:

        A Toledo Shooter? Nope, and most people would agree that was a political faux pas, there’s no argument from me on that.

        Sadly we all do it and at the wrong time

        However given the current emotions of hate Trump spurred on by the left, (Which is reminiscent of Rahm Emanuel use of the phrase “Don’t waste a crisis “)

        Trumps use of Toledo is going to get a lot of play by the never Trumpery crowd.

        Trump at least got the State right, unlike Biden. When earlier this week, Biden mistakenly (I guess if your on the left it is just a mistake) said the recent mass shootings in “El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio took place in Houston and Michigan”.

        I wonder if they are regionally near Obamas 58th State?

        Biden made a number of verbal goof’s, my favorite was his statement of ‘We believe in facts, not truth.’

        Which Trump jumped on in one of his Tweets (ugh).

        There were more Biden gaffes:

        Looks like another mudslinging Campaign season is upon us already. Popcorn anyone?

        • Chris says:

          Biden is terrible, and has been a gaffe-prone mess since he was chosen as Obama’s vice president. His debate performances have been abysmal. You won’t get much of a defense of him from me, other than “He’s better than Trump.”

          You’re right that the Toledo thing is a relatively normal political error. It isn’t getting much play in the media, certainly not as much as it would from a more normal president, because Trump has said eight crazy or inappropriate things since. Accusing one of his predecessors of murder? Mocking Asian accents? Bashing political enemies and lying about crowd sizes at a hospital visit for victims of a mass shooting? These things would have been unthinkable under any other president. We should make them unthinkable again.

  13. Libby says:

    “The social mechanisms which formerly prevented these massacres have crumbled.”

    Like what, exactly? Jim Crow laws, racial segregation?

    You sound like that idiotic Trump minion, Mulvaney: going on about how this didn’t happen a hundred years ago: he also going all “failure of values”, and ignoring the fact yer AR-15 did not exist a hundred years ago.


    • Post Scripts says:

      Libby, instruments just as lethal existed back then too! I could name them, but I won’t waste my time. But, there goes one of your points. Next, we’re not talking about Jim Crow laws or segregation, that’s all on you sweety. When we talk about social mechanisms, we’re talking about the obvious things like Sunday School, two parent homes, a Mom and Dad being parents, not friends, not enablers and not druggies. We’re talking about the values taught at home by REAL parents and Grandparents. We’re talking about the influence of the church regarding piety, restraint, love, charity, the 10 commandments, etc. We’re talking about people willing to work hard to put food on the table because they were raised with a high regard for good work ethics. We’re talking about a people who fought and died to preserve the union and our Constitution. We’re talking about a patriotic bond shared by all Americans that produced brave men like Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain (battle of the Little Round Top). There’s a long list of patriots I bet you never heard of that died to preserve their country and not one died for open borders, free shit, higher taxes and more regulations…that’s all on you. You can ignore these good things about our history and our culture and go skipping down the road calling everyone racists, but we know who and what built America, even if you don’t. Such deliberate ignorance is sad.

      • Chris says:

        Yikes, Jack. You sound just like that crazy Republican congresswoman you just condemned yesterday. She too blamed a lack of religious influence on this shooting…despite the fact that evangelical Christians are the group most opposed to Hispanic immigrants and most concerned with the “invasion” this shooter was trying to stop. When are you going to put the blame on the very rhetoric that the shooter was clear inspired him?

      • Libby says:

        Bull, Jack.

        45 rounds per minute? The Gilroy shooter hit 20-some people in just about that long.

        The Dayton shooter came from an uprighteous, Christian, two-parent home, and said parents say they cannot believe their boy did what he did.

        Alas, the parents of most mass shooter say that.

        I think I’m dead-bang-on. All these sad white boys, they now have to mix, in a multicultural society, in order to get on … and they cannot cope.

        Your post is pablum, Jack, groundless, nonsense. Why do you refuse to THINK about these things?

  14. Libby says:

    “The bad news is that unless those values can regain cultural dominance, and unless we can replace combativeness and angry confrontation with honest conversation, mass murder will continue to be our inescapable new normal.”

    Jack, you know what this says to me?

    those values = white supremacy
    cultural dominance = oppression of minorities
    angry confrontation = resistance to said oppression
    honest conversation = acquiescence to the above, which, I’m sorry, you just ain’t gonna get.

    It looks like we’re going to have a rough time for a while, but we are NOT going back to the good ol’ days sold to you by the Trump Campaign. It ain’t gonna happen, so suck it up.

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