Jumping to Conclusions

We’re still waiting for all the facts about today’s shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords and others in Tucson, Arizona. But that hasn’t stopped liberals in the media from speculating that the “Tea Party” movement is to blame. Even the New York Times, which is supposedly a respected news source and should know better, has a few paragraphs at the end of the first page of this article, trying to link this shooting, by implication, to opposition to Obamacare.


Leave aside the fact that the same liberals in the media routinely refuse to link acts of terrorism to Islam. The fact is that Ayn Rand’s philosophy, Objectivism, is the fundamental at the root of the Tea Party movement, its “but-for” cause, whether many conservatives like to acknowledge it or not. Rick Santelli, who, perhaps not intentionally, started the Tea Party with this rant on CNBC, said, “At the end of the day, I’m an Ayn Rander.”

*Atlas Shrugged Spoiler Alert*

And, what did the heroes of Ayn Rand’s magnum opus, Atlas Shrugged, do to register their protest against the immoral, welfare-state policies of the government in the novel? Did they pull out their guns and start shooting up Congressmen or other politicians and bureaucrats? No, they SHRUGGED. They did not initiate force or engage in violent revolution. They simply withdrew from society, taking their tremendous productive ability with them.

So, if people understand the proper root of the Tea Party movement, which is a political philosophy based on respect for individual rights, a philosophy that condemns the initiation of force in all its forms, they will understand that any attempt to blame a senseless, violent attack on that movement, is absurd.

UPDATE: There are now reports coming in saying that the shooter, Jared Lee Loughner, is actually more of a communist or fascist, and not a Tea Partier at all. You can see his lovely “videos” on YouTube, here. Even if it does turn out that he self-identifies as a Tea Partier, a fan of Sara Palin, an opponent of Obamacare, etc., etc., my point is that his actions fly in the face of the fundamental philosophical idea at the core of the Tea Party movement: a principled defense of individual rights. (If you go to his YouTube profile, you will see that one of the wide variety of books he lists as favorites is Ayn Rand’s We the Living. *Spoiler* The heroine of that novel didn’t engage in violent uprising against the government, either.)


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5 responses to “Jumping to Conclusions

  1. Julie

    It is interesting to point out that President Obama took several hours and a gave a lighthearted “shout out” to a medicine man before mentioning the Ft Hood shootings, in which, he warned us to “not jump to conclusions.” Even Fox news has compared this shooter to a “Timothy McVeigh.” Calm down folks, use reason and have some compassion at this sad time! (I shrug)

  2. M. Stern

    He lists as his favorite books “Mein Kampf” and “The Communist Manifesto”. That immediately disqualifies him from being an advocate of limited government and thus a Tea Party type of person.

    When I first heard of the shooting, my first thought was “I wonder if he is an anarchist in any way.” It is usually people who are influenced by anarchism in some way that end up being violent. The so-called “Right-Wing militia groups” are usually anarchist influenced. Think of Billy Beck and his “keep your powder dry” mentality. There is a long history of anarchist terrorism and violent attacks against government officers and officials.

    This guy Loughner may also just be crazy as there doesn’t really seem too much ideological content to his YouTube videos. He talks of a “new currency” but it doesn’t sound like he is really talking about monetary policy. But it won’t matter. The Left and the MSM will paint him as Tea Party “fanatic” who is “furthering a climate of hate.” Paul Krugman has already done that:


    That man is just vile.

    • I think in one of the “videos” he does talk about the gold standard, FWIW. And I think right after that he says he doesn’t “trust in God,” alluding to a rejection of paper currency.

  3. Anthony Grundon

    He talked a little about the gold standard, but a lot about the concept of “currency”, and politicians trying to control people via “currency” and mind-control. He seemed to believe he was an agent of freedom, helping people escape control from his peculiarly defined “elites”.

  4. Dan Adams

    I just wanted to point out something that I think is particularly illustrative of what is going on here. This case notwithstanding, as there is a chance Loughner is just insane, it is clear, I think, that in general the extent to which people go out and commit violence against others in order to further their cause is the extent to which leftist materialism has invaded their minds. This makes it particularly hypocritical of the left to assault advocates of reason and non-forceful persuasion as the intellectual supporters of crime.

    The illustration of this concept that caught my eye was a pair of posts made by one of my liberal professors on his moderately popular blog, which I will not name so as to prevent promoting it.

    From December 15th, 2010 (bold added by me):

    It’s pathetic, really, to watch what passes for a social movement in the U.S. these days. I would even have some respect for the Tea Party, as numb-nutted and vapid as they are, if they would, for lack of a better term, show some fight. Flip over a goddamn car or something. Set a fire. Punch a cop. Do something. Anger might not be the most useful emotion but at least it’s an emotion. We have the same limp-dicked reaction to everything. Sit on our asses, watch people argue about it on TV, and change the channel. I suppose it is more realistic to expect Teabaggers, fighting as they are on the side of big business and authority, to fellate a cop rather than punch one. The left’s meager efforts to get riled up are no better, though. We don’t have “rallies” or “protests” in this country; we have the occasional well attended circle jerk at which everyone shows up at the same place and stands around taking pictures to post on Facebook before quietly going our separate ways back to the Holiday Inn Express.

    Notice the disdain for persuasion and talking, as if reason can never accomplish anything, and the eager exhortation to violence, as if force is the only thing that ever can. There is also his implication that emotions are useful, but only as a means to non-verbal action, which, in the cases he specifically mentions, means violent action.

    From January 10th, 2011 (bold added by me, again):

    The point is that this is yet another opportunity for our society to reject the prosaic “just a bad apple” theory of why violence like this happens. We can say: Yes, there are always going to be nutjobs out there…so in what way is it remotely responsible for the media, party leaders, and elected officials to fan the flames with violent, paranoid rhetoric? Why is there so much rationalization and so little condemnation when we hear and see this kind of behavior? Because everyone is Entitled to Their Opinion, no matter how insane it may be. While that is true in the legal sense, it is not absolutely true. We need people in general, and Republicans in particular, to take a more active role in condemning this kind of rhetoric – before something terrible happens, not when the body count starts rising.

    This is just the capstone of the hypocrisy. Mere weeks ago he was lamenting the lack of protesters setting cars on fire, and now he is in a tizzy about “violent, paranoid rhetoric.” Calls to “punch a cop” seem to fit into the “violent” and “paranoid” category, if you ask me.

    To be clear, I do not mean to proffer this as a means of bashing my professor; I just thought it might be useful to share this as symbolic of the attitude of opponents of “extremism.”

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