Andrew Sullivan, that august sage of impartial political analysis, is live-blogging the ensuing madness of the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., and several other bystanders today by a deranged gunman, who believed, among other things, in government mind-control:
I have no expertise in this at all, but my impression of his writings and web presence does indeed suggest to me that some mental illness is probably a key part of this. But this does not exonerate violent or excessive rhetoric from the far right or far left: it’s precisely the disturbed who can seize on those kinds of statements and act on them. The danger of violent rhetoric, especially involving gun violence, is its interaction with the disturbed. That was Pelosi’s message last year. (Emphasis added.)
Yeah, Sherlock. Maybe. Indeed, probably. Get this man a doctorate in criminal science. I don’t have the stomach to comment on the rest of Sullivan’s drivel, which is mostly an attempt to prove his knee-jerk assumption that tea baggers and violent, right-wing rhetoric is behind this tragedy. And that what we really need to do is stop this dangerous rhetoric. Then, presumably, these kinds of things wouldn’t happen.
But seriously, in academia, starting out from a conclusion and then trying to prove it, rather than researching and then arriving at a conclusion, is called using a “front-loaded thesis,” otherwise known as being a complete hack.
Gee, I sure hope the media pundits don’t use these peoples’ deaths as a tool to advance their own political narratives. That would be regrettable.