Saturday, December 14, 2013


Online right-wingers are flipping out about this:
Denver Post Stealth Edits Out 'Socialist' from Profile of Arapahoe School Shooter

On Friday, Colorado's Arapahoe High School was put on lockdown while a student armed with a shotgun took over the school in an attempt to confront a teacher who he believed had wronged him. The student, identified as 18-year-old Karl Pierson, took his own life before he could be taken into custody.

In a profile on the shooter in the Denver Post which focused on his "strong political beliefs," several of Pierson's classmates offered their impressions of the shooter. One of the shooter's classmates described him as a "very opinionated socialist." Shortly after that post was published, however, that description was edited out. The current copy simply describes him as "very opinionated." ...
Well, actually the current copy of that paragraph in the Denver Post story describes Pierson as "very opinionated." Much of the rest of the story is very clear about Pierson's actual political beliefs, based on real evidence rather than one fellow student's possibly unreliable description:
In one Facebook post, Pierson attacks the philosophies of economist Adam Smith, who through his invisible-hand theory pushed the notion that the free market was self-regulating. In another post, he describes himself as "Keynesian."

"I was wondering to all the neoclassicals and neoliberals, why isn't the market correcting itself?" he wrote. "If the invisible hand is so strong, shouldn't it be able to overpower regulations?"

Pierson also appears to mock Republicans on another Facebook post, writing "you republicans are so cute" and posting an image that reads: "The Republican Party: Health Care: Let 'em Die, Climate Change: Let 'em Die, Gun Violence: Let 'em Die, Women's Rights: Let 'em Die, More War: Let 'em Die. Is this really the side you want to be on?"
In the story as currently edited, the Post is telling its readers quite clearly that Pierson's politics leaned left. So why is the right throwing a fit? The right doesn't think there's any difference between liberalism and socialism. If you express support for what used to be considered mainstream economic ideas -- Keynesian stimulus in times of recession, for instance -- there's no difference between you and Stalin or Mao, according to, well, every right-winger in America in recent years.

So if The Denver Post is describing Pierson as a Keynesian, isn't it in effect calling him a big fat commie, as far as the right is concerned? Why isn't the right satisfied with that?


Victor said...

Being Conservative, means never being satisfied.

There's always something new to piss them off.

And when people try to satisfy them, they usually insult them, and point out inadequacies.

And then, if/when they try again to satisfy them, they move the goalpost.

Then, there's always someone who's letting down Conservatives and Conservatism.
Why can't everyone be pure, like them?

And what's that over there?

Ten Bears said...

Having both grown up in an IWW (Wobbly) household and voted some form of Green/Socialist in seven of the past ten national elections let me assure you a "liberal" is not necessarily Socialist, vis a vis.

Once more, in harmony: the difference between "Capitalism" (Consumerism, Corporatism, Fascism) and "Communism" (Socialism) is a simple matter of rearrainging the words. In Capitalism (Comsumerism, Corporatism, Fascism) the means of production, the corporation, control the means of distribution: the state. In Communism (Socialism) the means of distribution, the state, control the means of production: the corporation. It's really rather simple.

I'd vote Anarchist but they never seem to have any candidates.

No fear.

Philo Vaihinger said...

His politics relevant to the shooting?

BillyWitchDoctor said...

Politics, race, and religion of the perpetrator are always very relevant to a crime...unless the perp is a white conservative male.

Examinator said...

Philo Vaihinger you are my poster person of the moment!
It has 2 cent of bugger all.
trust? the media and the superficiality of the public to be distracted (deliberately?) from the difficult/uncomfortable issue here.... what caused this young man to do what he did.

Notwithstanding Ten Bears is correct, as far as he went. I would add Extra qualifiers.

The first is What's in a Political label?........ human over simplification, ignorance, prejudice and super sized opportunistic spin based 'male bovine excreta'.

I dare anyone to show me any country with a pure as correctly defined political philosophy.

The reality is that there is a difference what the unwashed particularly call Socialism (sic) (actually what they mean is socialised) is a feature/ function not the philosophy i.e. social security is part of the original capitalism. Neither is the USA a true Capitalist or Democratic state (the Republic bit refers to the means method it uses to be a democracy). A bit like painting with a brush rather than a roller.... it's still painting.

Australia is also notionally a Capitalist democracy but it's method is the Westminster system they are more more socialised in that they have a hybrid socialised medicine and a concept or a social wage. Like the USA is a multi party government that tends towards a plutocracy. Uruguay has a nominally communist (inclined) president and the government own the power generation. The government owns more of essential services (water) and sets basic food item prices, yet encourages ownership means of production. China a “communistic state” it is a one party government that is nominally democratically elected. The weighting of the votes has less to do with communism and fascism. Singapore is nominally multi party democratic government and has huge state owned monopolistic commercial enterprises and encourages private ownership of some means of production

Second it is the public and it's obsession with labels/ little pigeon holes because of (wilful or genetic) predispositions towards a need to feel in control. (i.e.. if I can pigeon hole (explain) it I no longer need to deal with it e.g. binary thinking Communism = socialist = Bad period (sic)! This allows the minorities of power to dictate (limit) the discussions by polarising them to a non realistic binary state.
Therefore the media's fascination with this lad's politics rather than what drove him to a psychotic state.
The reasons might infer that there are issues that we as a country/culture /individuals need to change but that would interrupt OUR personal selfishness.

Ten Bears said...

Of course the question that won't be asked is what kind of drugs was he hopped up on. I don't doubt that with the majority of these shootings his parents and/or teachers selfishly had him strung out on some florine based psycotropic mood altering happy pills.

"America" is the only country in the world where you can stroll down a sedate suburban street to find the word DRUGS spelled out in four foot letters.

No fear.

Examinator said...

Ten Bears :-)
Drugs may have been involved but I suspect there was something more basic.
Clearly he felt despair but the question about what.

My experience tells me that drug taking is a symptom of something deeper.
Recent surveys of high students school show that a high proportion of student are feeling negative about a university degree ensuring job much less a career.

Many of the youth of today run harder to stay in the same place.

Many resort to adrenalin rushes to make them feel alive.

I can only imagine what it must be like as an aware 18 y o who sees well the dysfunction that is society today. The pressure to achieve high numbers at high school and even more in university for what? Even a degree isn't a guarantee of a good job like it was when I left high school.
With one Indian University turning out 15000 IT grads each year and as such many are call center operators working for a wage that we wouldn't get out of bed for. BTW India is graduating similar numbers of engineers .

Don't kid your self the amount of information a middle school student needs to know more things today say our grandfathers and probably fathers.
My step father had year 5 elementary school but rose to be a NCO in the army and the head of a jail. Today you need not only a degree in psychology with speciality in criminology but also an Master of Business Administration would help.

Primary school principals now need Doctorates in specific levels of education Education etc. most have multiple degrees and doctorates.
Just look at how daunting that would have been to you at say 18.

Then look at the daily bombarding of negativity and well gross stupidity and selfishness that is US media, politics and business....

Once the old adage went that every one was a lefty in high school and university and a right winger as you had children and had to support them. Now a days the pressure to be competitive and ruthless is forced earlier and earlier. In sth Korea 70 % of students elementary school attend week end classes to improve their studies.
And may the spirits help you if you are not suited to Academic excellence. As far as the Right are concerned you are disposable. Some even say that unless you can provide all your children's needs extra classes etc. you shouldn't have children... you can't afford them.
The future for them isn't a wonder of possibilities like when we left school.

Ten Bears said...

I have high school and middle school grandkids and as a (reluctantly) retired college instructo am well aware of not only their struggles but the struggle to keep them off the happy pills. The schools hand them out like candy and it damn near takes a court order to impress on the o so smart assholes that no means no. I won't argue that it is symptom, but if you dig deep enough you will find in in everyone of these shootings the perpetrator was either on or just coming off of prescribed psychotropic mood altering drugs.

Ten Bears said...

There is a really good Times piece about this headlining this morning, and while you are there America's Child Soldiers is as good a read.

Examinator said...

Ten Bears Yay
Now I need happy pills!

The schools handing them out!! only if they are prescribed by a doctor I hope. I respect your comments My problem was simply that there is a deeper malaise that drives us to over prescribe or need them in the first place

And there is an other issue with the US model over prescribing... the power of big pharma, and the abuse of their advertising and power.
big pharma create disorders .
ADHD is nowhere as wide spread in Aus as the US because of the Govt prescription drug scheme and the ban on public advertising, and gifts to the Doctors.

Mind you I'm on SSRI(mood stabilisers so I won't top myself (Bipolar 1) and be a miserable old fart most of the time! to a point they work but...I'm still a curmudgeon.

As I said before the problem isn't just that children a given drugs to cope but rather that society is creating the problem for them to need intervention and the preeminance of the myth that "the magic" pill will fix them.The implication is that we can all continue with our self-centered lives. All this does really is suppress the symptoms while the problem still exists.
We as a society need to address the excesses that or our capitalist/consumerist underpinning.