Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Using Tragedies to Glorify War Create More Tragedies

I don't want to speak badly about someone that was almost killed; and if I do many people may be more outraged with me than the causes of a lot of violence; which is part of what makes some of these propaganda tactics so effective. However it is now routine to glorify tragedies and distract from the causes of them and how to prevent them.

When it becomes politically incorrect to report the most effective ways to prevent tragedies and politically correct to glorify some of them then it is virtually impossible to prevent them; however challenging this propaganda makes it more likely.

When the script calls for it the Democratic Party often tries to portray itself as the scientific alternative to the Republicans who they portray as ideological fanatics; however they don't actually do a much better job when it comes to looking for the best research on any given subject; and their ideology seems to be watered down to suit the agendas of their financial backers. There have been at least three relatively recent incidents where this may have backfired and partially contributed to politicians, judges and lobbyists being shot; yet they're still not willing to look at the best research or admit that some of their own policies might have been partially responsible for failing to prevent many tragedies, including shootings that could be greatly reduced by improving education and child care not abandoning inner cities; or wars that are routinely fought based on lies.

It often seems as if they're beginning to believe their own propaganda, and in some cases their lies; and regrettably they refuse to let the best researchers that provide the biggest challenge to their propaganda to have a chance to correct them in a high profile manner.

Gabrielle Giffords is apparently a co-founder of "Americans for Responsible Solutions" and according to Gabrielle Giffords: Orlando and Jo Cox’s death show the horrors of gun violence 06/20/2016 she said, "I have said before, and I will say again: We all know there is no single solution to our gun violence problem, ..." which sounds very good; and it would be very good if they followed up on it by discussing all the contributing causes of violence and how it escalates; but they don't. The only solution they discuss seems to be gun control and they keep running around in circles with that issue never accomplishing anything.

Apparently Gabrielle Giffords wasn't even a supporter of gun control until after she was shot according to Giffords A Longtime Supporter of Gun Rights By April Girouard January 09, 2011 but now it seems to be the only thing that she discusses and she repeats the same arguments over and over again every time there is a shooting. Stephanie Rawlings-Blake also made a similar statement when she was mayor of Baltimore and they had their problems with shootings; but then instead of discussing different contributing causes of violence she said that her idea of multiple solutions was gun control at the local city level, gun control at the state level and gun control at the national level.

Is that really the best they can ever come up with?

There really are many people at the grassroots level trying to discuss many more of the contributing causes of violence; unfortunately it doesn't serve the interests of the political class and they can't get an opportunity to present their ideas on the mainstream media. I went into this myself in a series of articles starting with Ignored evidence linking corporal punishment, poverty and crime grows, which I consider the biggest contributing cause to escalating violence, and ending with Politicians increase crime; Grass roots efforts reduce crime; Politicians steal the credit which includes grassroots efforts to address the causes of violent crime in abandoned inner cities. This included an article on gun control, How does gambling and gun control impact violent crime? which indicates that reasonable gun control can be a part of the solution, so I don't oppose their efforts to implement it; but it is almost certainly not the most important contributing cause of violence.

There should be no doubt that many social programs like improving education, day care, reducing poverty and maintaining a functioning economy where people have access to economic opportunities and health care, including mental health would be a major part of reducing violence. Yet few people from the political establishment discuss this.

Recently Gabrielle Giffords was honored with new U.S. warship bearing her name 06/10/2017 in a major ceremony that was attended by Hillary Clinton who she supported in the 2016 campaign. These ceremonies do nothing to solve many of the biggest problems in our society and are clearly designed to reinforce the belief that our military is here to defend us; however the vast majority of their activities have been based on lies that are routinely exposed in alternative media outlets and they're often so obvious like the lack of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq that even the mainstream media reports some of these lies.

Amazingly neither Gabrielle Giffords, Hillary Clinton or the vast majority of sitting members of congress are even discussing a "Stop Arming Terrorists" bill that was introduced five months ago to the House and two and a half months ago in the Senate according to, US government proves love for ISIS as bill to 'Stop Arming Terrorists' gets only 13 supporters 06/20/2017 This bill should be so obvious that it should have been introduced decades ago and passed. This should be a no-brainer, since many of the tyrants or revolutionaries we have armed in the past have turned the weapons we gave them against us, including the mujahedin which became the Taliban and Al-Qaeda Sadam Hussein the rebels that became ISIS and many more that could be listed easily with a modest amount of research.

Regrettably, even Bernie Sanders hasn’t co-sponsored this bill. He’s usually the best the Congress has to offer; however whether he’s distracted by other issues or might be under pressure from special interests, like any other politicians, even the best need to be reminded what we want and know that they’ll have support if they do it.

A dramatic ceremony naming a war ship after a victim of gun violence is considered newsworthy but reporting by the media or the majority of Congress on a bill so obvious that would reduce the risk of war dramatically isn't! How obvious and absurd can they be?

Gabrielle Giffords also has a history of catering to prejudices before she was shot and led to her support for many of the increased paranoia about illegal aliens being responsible for large amounts of crime even though the evidence doesn't support this at all as indicated in the following excerpts from Marie Gottschalk and another article following it:

Thanks to these fast-track programs, the number of criminal case filings in the judicial districts along the 2,000-mile border with Mexico has skyrocketed, paralyzing the courts. Processing so many petty border crossers without any criminal records has severely taxed the US Marshall Service and the federal courts, which must provide transportation, housing, food, defense attorneys, courtrooms, clerks, and judges. The $600 million border security plan that President Obama signed into law in the summer of 2010 failed to include any additional money for overworked courts or overworked defense attorneys handling immigration cases. At the time of his death in the 2011 Tucson shooting spree that severely injured Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ), Arizona’s chief federal judge John Roll was waiting to speak with the congresswoman to thank her for her efforts to secure more funding for federal courts overburdened with Operation Streamline cases.

Operation Streamline and related programs have severely compromised the rights and dignity of immigrant defendants. In some jurisdictions, Border Patrol attorneys have been deputized as special assistant U.S. attorneys to prosecute Operation Streamline cases. These deputies generally operate out of the Border Patrol offices with little oversight from the United States Attorney’s Office. Their dual appointments raise some troubling conflicts of interests, especially as concerns escalate about excessive use deadly and other force by Border Patrol agents and local residents along the Southwest border.

To handle the massive increase in immigration prosecutions, overtaxed courts have been conducting expedited hearings in which they arraign, convict, and sentence dozens of border crossers – sometimes upward of eighty or a hundred – en masse in a single court appearance. Human rights groups have denounced these as “rapid-fire group trials.” Immigrant defendants often arrive in courts shackled to one another after a brief meeting with a defense attorney that sometimes lasts barely five minutes. Since the number of public defenders has not increased to meet the tidal wave of new criminal investigations cases, an appointed defense attorney often represents dozens of clients in a single hearing. ....

When Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) announced in 2010 that the Obama administration would be sending 1,200 more National Guard troops to police the border with Mexico, she held up a photo of Robert Krentz, the soft spoken rancher shot to death weeks earlier on his ranch. After his death Krentz quickly became the poster child for the war on immigrants and a cause celebre among conservatives. Marie Gottschalk "Caught: The Prison State and the Lockdown of American Politics" 2015 p.223, 235

Gabrielle Giffords and John Roll both supported Operation Streamline which spent an enormous amount of resources on immigrants that had little or no criminal record and were just trying to earn a living. Gabrielle Giffords made a big issue of the death of Robert Krentz, which is tragic, and additional violence should be prevented as effectively as possible. However as I reported previously in Immigration Policy And Outsourcing Are Virtual Slavery, Immigrants are far less likely to commit violent crime. Statistics can easily be misrepresented, and politicians routinely do just that but The Southern Poverty Law Center pointed out a much more reliable report by The Sentencing Project (PDF) that I'm sure will stand up to scrutiny much better than the propaganda repeated over and over by the Trump administration and the mainstream media which pretends to do a good job debunking some of the lies from Trump. This report points out that, "1. Immigrants commit crimes at lower rates than native-born citizens; 2. Higher levels of immigration in recent decades may have contributed to the historic drop in crime rates; 3. Police chiefs believe that intensifying immigration law enforcement undermines public safety; 4. Immigrants are under-represented in U.S. prisons."

This may not be much consolation the the family of Robert Krentz; however they never solved that case so they still don't know for certain that it was by an illegal alien. But they do suspect that it was probably drug related and even though violence is far lower than the rhetoric by those campaigning against immigrants, as indicated in an article below it should still be addressed. However once again past government policy has also contributed to that as demonstrated in and expose that has been reported in numerous books and the Kerry report and is finally being reported this week on a series from the History Channel. (The History Channel Is Finally Telling the Stunning Secret Story of the War on Drugs 06/18/2017) This show still doesn't cover more than a fraction of the participation of the CIA in allowing drugs to be run but it does cite some of the most credible source that have covered it previously and could lead some people to catch up by reading material from people like Celerino Castillo III who was a former DEA agent that blew the whistle on efforts to overlook drug running and Gary Webb author of "Dark Alliance," which starts with disclosures from the Kerry Committee Report that investigated drug running decades ago but kept coverage of this report to a minimum since then. Alfred McCoy also reported on how the CIA was involved in running heroin going back at least to the Vietnam war and continuing in the war in Afghanistan.

There's too much more on that to go into in a relatively short article, but it is far more important than this ceremony glorifying war and exposing it could do far more to reduce violence than demonizing immigrants.

The following article also explained at the time that Gabrielle Giffords called for increased border patrols how she was misrepresenting the threat by immigrants:

On Border Violence, Truth Pales Compared to Ideas By Randal C. Archibald June 19, 2010

When Representative Gabrielle Giffords, Democrat of Arizona, announced that the Obama administration would send as many as 1,200 additional National Guard troops to bolster security at the Mexican border, she held up a photograph of Robert Krentz, a mild-mannered rancher who was shot to death this year on his vast property. The authorities suspected that the culprit was linked to smuggling.

“Robert Krentz really is the face behind the violence at the U.S.-Mexico border,” Ms. Giffords said.

It is a connection that those who support stronger enforcement of immigration laws and tighter borders often make: rising crime at the border necessitates tougher enforcement.

But the rate of violent crime at the border, and indeed across Arizona, has been declining, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as has illegal immigration, according to the Border Patrol. While thousands have been killed in Mexico’s drug wars, raising anxiety that the violence will spread to the United States, F.B.I. statistics show that Arizona is relatively safe.

That Mr. Krentz’s death nevertheless churned the emotionally charged immigration debate points to a fundamental truth: perception often trumps reality, sometimes affecting laws and society in the process.

Judith Gans, who studies immigration at the Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy at the University of Arizona, said that what social psychologists call self-serving perception bias seemed to be at play. Both sides in the immigration debate accept information that confirms their biases, she said, and discard, ignore or rationalize information that does not. There is no better example than the role of crime in Arizona’s tumultuous immigration debate.

“If an illegal immigrant commits a crime, this confirms our view that illegal immigrants are criminals,” Ms. Gans said. “If an illegal immigrant doesn’t commit a crime, either they just didn’t get caught or it’s a fluke of the situation.”

Ms. Gans noted that sponsors of Arizona’s controversial immigration enforcement law have made careers of promising to rid the state of illegal immigrants through tough legislation.

“Their repeated characterization of illegal immigrants as criminals — easy to do since they broke immigration laws — makes it easy for people to ignore statistics,” she said.

Moreover, crime statistics, however rosy, are abstract. It takes only one well-publicized crime, like Mr. Krentz’s shooting, to drive up fear. ....

For instance, statistics show that even as Arizona’s population swelled, buoyed in part by illegal immigrants funneling across the border, violent crime rates declined, to 447 incidents per 100,000 residents in 2008, the most recent year for which comprehensive data is available from the F.B.I. In 2000, the rate was 532 incidents per 100,000. Complete article

However, as I said this is little consolation to Robert Krentz or his family; but this is also related to foreign policy and oppression that has gone on in Latin America as well as the war on drugs and the history of that shows that the same activities that have supported the phony "War on Drugs" and allowed drug running from allies of the CIA also oppressed many Latin Americans and these oppressed people are much more likely to become violent, whether it is as part of a drug running operation by either the allies or enemies of the CIA or whether it is fleeing tyrants that are often supported by the United States. this includes Honduran refugees that were fleeing the coup which Hillary Clinton partially supported as Secretary of State.

It may not seem politically correct to criticize someone that has been shot and will not be the same again; however it is far worse to continue ignoring the root causes of violence and wars based on lies or to glorify that them with propaganda that enables anyone that speaks ill of the victims.

I still don't like speaking badly of Gabrielle Giffords or John Roll but the policies they supported didn't reduce violence at all and while they were demonizing immigrants they weren't paying attention to the mental health problems that contributed to Jared Loughner's mental illness and led to their own injuries. It isn't a guarantee that if they did more to defend education child care or repair abandoned inner cities in addition to addressing the other contributing causes of violence but it would have made it much less likely especially if they had begun reforming based on the best research decades ago, since some of the most effective solutions take time to show results.

Obama to Send Up to 1,200 Troops to Border By Randal C. Archibald May 25, 2010

Gabrielle Giffords: We need courage to face our gun-safety problem now 06/15/2017

"War Is A Racket" By Smedley Darlington Butler

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