Carla from Illinois, but also Stephanie Ruhle!


The limits of human discernment: We listened this morning to the first hour of C-Span's Washington Journal.

Mimi Geerges took phone calls from C-Span viewers concerning the violent attack on Paul Pelosi. At 7:44 A.M., a caller on the Republican line offered these thoughts:

CARLA FROM ILLINOIS (10/29/22): Good morning. How are you?

GEERGES: Good thanks!

CARLA FROM ILLINOIS: I'm kind of like on the fringe about all this, because the fact is, is that, to me, it looks like another one of the Whitmer deals where the FBI has been involved.

They got some probably crazy person off the street, one of the homeless people there in San Francisco, to go in and do this. Then they're going to blame it on QAnon, and it's like— 

Really, the FBI has a lot to do with a lot of this stuff that goes on in the world and you ain't going to tell me any different.

You can hear the whole phone call here.

Carla's analysis continued briefly from there. We would say that this phone call provides an anthropology lesson—an important lesson concerning the limits of human discernment.

For the record, Carla lives in a village in southern Illinois whose population is just under one thousand. She seems to have formed an instant idea about this violent attack.

She wasn't asked to explain why she thinks the FBI was involved in this matter. For better or worse, C-Span's moderators rarely offer any reaction to the things their callers assert.

Needless to say, Carla is just one person. There are roughly 330 million people in the United States, roughly 260 million of whom are above the age of 18.

Carla is just one person of many. That said, she seems to have formed an idea about this attack in the absence of any evidence of any kind, and that's where today's lesson starts.

According to major anthropologists, human discernment is often extremely limited. Quite often, we humans don't behave like "the rational animal" we've sometimes claimed to be.

Carla from Illinois is just one person. She isn't an influential person. She may not be "well educated" in the ways we tend to define that term.

Today, experts are asking us to consider another example of badly flawed human discernment. They've referred us to this statement by Stephanie Ruhle, a high-ranking "cable news" host—a person who went to the finest schools, who is wealthy and is quite influential:

RUHLE (10/25/22):  Walk me through what that's supposed to look like. You're a young, vulnerable, 16-year-old girl dealing with an unwanted pregnancy, and you're supposed to address that with your parents, your doctor, and then what happens? You call a mayor?

As you know, MSNBC tends to hide its work. Thanks to the invaluable Internet Archive, you can hear Ruhle's statement here.

"Stephanie, that's bullshit," former Philadelphia mayor Michael Nutter replied. He was accepting Ruhle's hapless paraphrase of something Candidate Oz had said.

We're so old that we can remember when we respected Nutter! At any rate, in response to what Nutter said, Ruhle broke out in a crooked grin, as if his wonderful barnyard language had been wonderfully daring, instructive.

Ruhle was offering a paraphrase of something Candidate Oz had said at that evening's Pennsylvania Senate debate. Her paraphrase was silly, dumb, stupid—pleasing but baldly bogus. 

That plainly wasn't what Oz had suggested or said. But according to experts, that's the best a certain class of blue tribe leaders are ever likely to do, given the limits of human discernment and the power of human ambition.

Dating to her hedge fund days, Ruhle has all the money in the world. 

She started out in the finest schools. Today, she's wealthy and quite highly placed—but in even a modestly rational world, that one bit of conduct would have gotten her fired.

That said, these are the "favorite reporters and friends" our flailing blue tribe widely follows. Their judgment and skills tend to be very poor—except in the realm of self-advancement, where they tend to be highly skilled.

Their basic intellectual skills tend to be strikingly limited. We're willing to guess that the paraphrase in question is truly the best Ruhle could do.

Alas! Dating all the way back to "Al Gore said he invented the Internet," these are the intellectual stumblebums who have been scripting our discourse. They're highly skilled at self-advancement, unimpressive at everything else.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep. Ludicrous as her phone call was, we'll take Carla from Illinois over this gang any day of the week.

She hasn't been to the finest schools. What is their excuse?

What did Candidate Oz really say? As we noted on Thursday, Monica Hesse explained the statement by Candidate Oz in her latest column for the Washington Post. 

She also discussed the actual problem, from the pro-choice perspective, with what the candidate actually said. No, really! You can read her column right here!

Hesse actually behaved like a competent journalist! Given the limits of human discernment and the desire to stick with the pack, you almost never see that.

Hesse broke every rule in the book when she behaved in the way she did. Ruhle was working from instant script—but according to major, world-class experts, this is the basic way of the world and no, it's not going to change.


  1. "Ludicrous as her phone call was, we'll take Carla from Illinois over this gang any day of the week."

    Hmm. Ludicrous, dear Bob? Is that what you learned from that phone call?

    How about: ...indicating a tremendous distrust of the governed towards governing classes? Y'know, the "elitist cabal of warmongers driven by cowardly wokeness, who divide us by racializing every issue" etc.

    1. You are a total idiot, and should
      simply shut up.

    2. No Mao, TDH is correct, what Carla said is ludicrous conspiracy theory, nuff' said.

    3. Hi!

      So, if anyone is interested, here is yet another excerpt from my memoirs....


      There it was. I finally released my gaseous creation from the nether regions.

      Instant relief. However, I felt a bit sad that this day had finally come. It was bittersweet in that I could now no longer protect my fart from the harsh realities of the world.

      Oh well. As the famous Mister Methane once said,

      'Why does the birdie chirp? And why does the fanny burp?'"

      Okay, that's it for now.

      Stay tuned for more!

      Thanks for reading.

      -Fanny Klapper

    4. And an enthusiastic Baba Booey to you, Fanny.

  2. Here is some media criticism:

    "The assassination attempt at the Speaker of the House’s home is a small story, below the fold.

    10 days before an election."

  3. Here is some more media criticism: Now that Musk has bought Twitter, not only are the white supremacists having a field day, but the Russian disinformation and fake accounts are already back.



  4. Digby's Blog writer Tom Sullivan has several articles up this morning about the relationship between this recent attempted assassination and Republican violent rhetoric, ads, and calls for retribution.

    Somerby addresses this by creating a false equivalency between a deranged C-Span caller and Stephanie Ruhle, because when a Democratic politician's husband is attacked, it is of course Ruhle's fault (if nothing else, for being a human being).

  5. "As you know, MSNBC tends to hide its work."

    Somerby has no idea what the intent is of MSNBC, and I think it is way more likely to be a cost-saving measure rather than trying to hide something they just broadcast to everyone. So, this is a Somerby-style slur against MSNBC, which like it or not is the only station broadcasting any liberal content. So, Somerby tries to beat them up while promoting Carlson and Fox's distressing work by excerpting from it, while giving them a pass on criticism.

  6. "Carla from Illinois is just one person. She isn't an influential person. She may not be "well educated" in the ways we tend to define that term."

    Carla is not well educated in any definition of the term. She believes falsehoods and may even have made her own leap to blaming the FBI, based on the way the FBI has been targeted by the right wing in an on-going way since 1/6.

    Why does Somerby pretend that there is any use of the term that would fit Carla? Because he wants to encourage the Trump MAGA Extremists in their belief that if they read something on a right-wing site, they have "done their research".

    Somerby ignores the meaning of well educated that includes critical thinking about sources, evaluation of the truth and likelihood information encountered is correct, and testing that info against other sources and real-world experience. That is what it means to be well educated -- not being able to go to a website that tell lies to the unwary. Much like this website is becoming, given that Somerby is increasingly untrustworthy.

    Somerby seems to want his conservative readers to think that Carla may have a point, or at least he doesn't want to confront them if they believe something similar about the murderer who appointed himself to kill Nancy Pelosi, with the right wing's blessings.

    1. We don’t know anything for certain yet.

      You would think that critical thinking skills would have kept our president from making public comments that suit his political narrative, but are yet unsubstantiated.

      Frankly, Biden had not behaved an ounce better than Carla.

    2. We do know who attacked Paul Pelosi and we know that he was seeking to kill Nancy Pelosi, calling for her when he broke into the house. We know that he is a right wing violent wacko because of his social media postings in his own words. AND we know that the right itself has been encouraging violence (see Digby's blog for examples of that) and it has not shown an circumspection, compassion or remorse after the shooting. It is as if the right wants to say that this attempted murderer is a good person, beautiful, and they are with him (as Trump did after Charlottesville).

    3. There are reports online that show this man as having a very confused amalgamation of political and social beliefs,,some featuring nudity and gay pride.

      Rethinking things, it occurs to me that Biden is different from Carla, in that his assumption personally benefits him in the lead up to the elections.

    4. He’s one of yours. Biden didn’t try to kill anyone with a hammer.

    5. It would be nice if Republican office holders and Republican candidates would stop calling for the death of their political opponents and would stop making campaign ads that show the Republican shooting the Democratic opponent, or, in the case of “Jim Lamon”, shooting Biden, Pelosi, and Mark Kelly:

      Or Marjorie Taylor Greene doing this:

      “In one post, from January 2019, Greene liked a comment that said "a bullet to the head would be quicker" to remove House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.”

      These aren’t internet randos. Why won’t Republicans condemn and put a stop to this kind of thing?

      This is your party, Cecelia. Cherish it.

    6. Tell that to Justice Kavanaugh, Rep. Zeldin, and Christopher Monzon.

    7. Btw- Tell to Justice Amy Coney Barrett. Liberals are trying to get Amazon to ban her book.

      Far as I know, it wouldn’t be on the curriculum of elementary students.

    8. Cecelia might finally be correct about something with her idea that the highest reaches of the Republican Party are the same exact thing as the worst human to ever declare themself a Democrat.

    9. Biden should be taking his critical thinking cues from Cecelia, who proudly fell for Christopher Rufo's lies about CRT being taught in elementary schools.
      Don't get mad at me Cecelia, I'm just kicking you while you're down.

    10. Democrats in the media promote these reactions all the time. They are constantly vilifying conservatives just as anonymices do here, You constantly say that Republicans are a threat to Democracy and to the survival of the planet.

      Do you think that’s less inflammatory because it comes from your mouths?

      You have the self-awareness of a toddler.

    11. No one has called for elimination of Republicans, just change of the anti-democratic behavior and some bipartisan cooperation in Congress.

      We ask our supporters to vote, we are not running ads that show AR-15s and some moron shouting “die MAGA scum.” Digby has a series of right wing examples. There is nothing like that on the left. No Democrat has been fined for trying to smuggle a gun into congress.

      I don’t like you, but that means I won’t invite you for dinner, not that I’m going tell any listening suitably armed fanboy to go shoot you. That is your party’s style. Look what JD Vance and Ronna said after Paul Pelisi was shot. That is what you guys do.

    12. No, it’s what political extremists of both sides do. You qualify, but you don’t have the insight to even understand that you’re painful to read.

      Somerby made an excellent point. The media are supposed to be among our best and our brightest. Anonymices constantly say that they are.

      Yet you’re no less prone to conspiratorial rumination and authoritarianism, though you’ll couch it in pseudo-science and “isms”.

    13. There is no bothsiderism about political violence. It belongs to the right.

    14. We had a whole Summer of Love that showed that.

    15. Liz Cheney and other mainstream republicans, many who have left the party, have declared it a threat to democracy. Individuals acting out violently based upon political affiliations have a much larger likelihood by about 20:1 of being right rather than left win extremists. The republican party, in its current incarnation, is beholden to its extreme faction out of craven fear.

    16. Biden was entirely correct in his initial assessment as opposed to right wing web sites claiming that Pelosi's husband was having a homosexual encounter with this criminal. Your party is inhabited with a large contingency of sick hateful assholes who are egged on by Fox and other right wing outlets. But go ahead and align yourself with them.

    17. What Cheney and the other Republicans who have left the party may really mean when they say it's a threat to democracy is that it's a threat to the status quo that supports the military industrial complex and our obsession with war abroad. Cheney has supported and promoted imperialism and perpetual war for 20 years so it's kind of hard to look at her as a moral guide do anything.

    18. So it's a little strange to see someone lecture someone else about who they align themselves with when they are literally aligning themselves with a venal master of war in the same breath.

    19. "Pelosi's husband was having a homosexual encounter with this criminal"

      Meh. It seems more likely that the homeless-nudist was fucking lady of the house, since apparently he kept asking "where is Nancy, where is Nancy?"

      ...which would also kinda explain the brawl with her hubby...

    20. The intruder wanted to discuss trans rights over a bowl of ice cream.

    21. Nancy Pelosi is everything a Democrat should be. Caring, sweet, loving. She accepts everyone for who they were, no matter what thier politics.

    22. So I take it that you align yourself against the Ukrainians since Republican's war aspirations are not in evidence anywhere else in ongoing political discussion . Your timing for this complaint is bizarre.

    23. Above comment was for 5:42 who, if ever voted for a republican for president, has a record of approving the war mongering that they complain about that exceeds mine. LOL.

    24. Mao,
      Democrats, with their consensual sex. You'll never find a Republican who gets into that kink.

    25. 5:42 of course the Putin loving Trump called the decision to invade Ukraine "brilliant". Makes perfect sense that when the Ukrainians started winning a contingency of Republicans suddenly became concerned about our support for them.

    26. Please stop embarrassing yourself. You lecture others about who they align themselves with well voicing support for outspokenly sinister right wing warmongers and anti-abortionists. Slink away and get ready to waste another day of your life watching football.

    27. Mao, your effort to emulate Goebbels is certainly succeeding, especially in the malignancy you manage to convey.

  7. “Carla from Illinois is just one person. She isn't an influential person. She may not be "well educated" in the ways we tend to define that term.”

    In this age of social media and the internet, Somerby needs to rethink what he thinks “influential” means. For all we know, Carla may be the leader of or member of a website or group that has lots of followers that has a great deal of influence with certain people. These groups may have many thousands of followers, and some exercise influence greater than the number of followers would suggest. Some of these groups advocate violence.

    I would venture to say that people like Ruhle (who is not advocating violence and is not stoking paranoia) may actually have far less influence than the aforementioned groups. She isn’t exactly a ratings powerhouse either.

  8. Somerby continues not to tell us what he thinks Oz meant, and why Ruhle’s paraphrase was inaccurate.

  9. “That said, these are the "favorite reporters and friends" our flailing blue tribe widely follows.”


  10. Another problem with our political analysis
    is people (some of whom went to Harvard) who
    will cherry pick two unrelated things to
    zap somebody they don’t like.
    And while Carla’s idiocy is not
    In itself influential, She was clearly
    influenced by a huge industry
    (Tucker being one example) of
    cynical nutballs of various shapes
    and sizes.
    Bob, who has tried to create the
    impression that Oz never said
    what he said is being at least as
    shady as the liberals who have
    arguably overplayed it. We’ve been
    here with Bob before.

  11. I fully agree with Bob on the loosing
    standards of obscenity in our discourse.
    That’s hardly an MSNBC problem.
    Hateful and foul mouthed scum bag
    Roger Stone has complaints about
    Hillary Clinton’s cussing ( which I
    guess She does in private)
    and Bob himself had cussed in
    the blog when he gets mad.
    Hypocritical #{£@&$””.

  12. To find out if Carla is educated, ask her to explain the relativity of simultaneity.

  13. Youngkin’s comment catching some
    heat would be an interesting challenge
    for Bob. Youngkin is not “just one
    person” with no influence.
    On the surface there is nothing
    wrong, per say, with his comment.
    Viewed with any context, it was
    heartless, cheap, and shallow
    like the “good” members of his
    party always have been.
    So don’t expect Bob to go
    near it.

  14. Mr Somerby does not say what Dr Oz said. He says that a person named Hesse said Oz was misquoted. We are not told in what way this happened. Today, Mr Somerby says that a former mayor named Nutter did not correct a journalist named Ruhle when the latter paraphrased what candidate Oz said.
    Mr Somerby is upset at that. He considers this lack of precision -- which he has never bothered actually to share with his readers -- to be a "howler".
    This is typical of Mr Somerby. His column now contains almost nothing else. Unspecified charges of unspecified misquoting or distortion, none the details of which he ever actually tells his reader.
    His column is, basically, an exercise in performative outrage, in contemptuous tones.

  15. Somerby makes an excellent point. Ruhle and others are jumping on a messaging bandwagon, implying that Oz suggested that a woman, when trying to decide whether to terminate a pregnancy, should consult with her doctor and her local politicians. But #1) this isn't what Oz said, and #2) what he said is bad enough without resorting to a distortion of what he said. Our side doesn't have to distort what the other side says and does, because it's already bad enough and unpopular. And it hurts our side when people discover that we've misstated things. As for the people complaining that Somerby didn't provide the actual text of what Oz said, I agree -- he should have provided it if he's going to criticize others for inaccurately paraphrasing it. On the other hand, he does provide a link to Hesse's column, which provides a transcription of what Oz said. Hesse does a better job of explaining all of this than Somerby. Nonetheless, Somerby is right.

    1. why don't you provide an actual quote of what She said, the disputed comment isn't very long.....

    2. What Oz said is ludicrous. Some of those paraphrases are actually mocking him.

  16. Somerby should have provided the quote he's talking about so we can understand what he's talking about. Back when the blog first started, it was good. He criticized both sides. But somewhere along the way he began to just criticize the left, which means he probably is now a part of the right and could even be getting paid by the Koch brothers or Putin. Things used to be good around here. Now we get right wing talking points. Right wing talking points and talk about a misquotation for a quotation that hasn't even been quoted. He complains there are no transcriptions at MSNBC okay fine but where are the quotes from Dr Oz around here?

    1. He gave us a clue yesterday, he can't stand to watch Fox. Except that Fox is the most watched outlet, probably, of them all. So he gradually lost all perspective. Does he have a right wing sugar daddy? Who knows, but at some point he did stop appealing
      for support from readers.

    2. He stipped appealing TO readers what with the right wing talking points and lack of providing which of the quotes was supposedly a misquote.

  17. Somerby, like Trump, says nothing about the attack on Nancy Pelosi via her husband. His friend, Kevin Drum has this to say, under the headline "We Live in an Age of MAGA Violence":

    "Let's take stock of the past two years. First a mob attacked the Capitol on January 6, 2021, hoping to hang Mike Pence so that he couldn't announce that Donald Trump had lost the 2020 election.

    Then six men tried to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan.

    A couple of months ago a guy assaulted an FBI office with an AR-15 rifle because he was mad about the FBI's search of Mar-a-Lago.

    Today a man broke into Nancy Pelosi's house, but couldn't find her so instead attacked her husband with a hammer.

    Election workers have been quitting in droves thanks to threats on their lives from MAGA fans convinced they're stealing votes.

    Ditto for MAGA threats against school board officials, librarians, and even the grand marshal of a July 4th parade.

    An executive at Dominion Voting Systems was forced into hiding after furious Trump supporters put a million-dollar bounty on his head for allegedly switching votes from Trump to Joe Biden.

    All of this is against the background of Trump's infamous campaign chant "Lock her up"; his continuing insistence that the 2020 election was stolen and Democrats need to be punished for it; and the increase of serious threats on right-wing social media.

    Am I missing anything?

    On the other side, one deluded guy wandered by Brett Kavanaugh's house this summer with vague thoughts of killing him. But he never did anything and shortly afterward called 911 on himself.

    Again, am I missing anything?"

    Meanwhile, the right wing is feverishly trying to portray Pelosi's attacker as some sort of misguided liberal mentally ill person (all of their go-to excuses for MAGA violence), despite his blog which repeats the right's favorite conspiracy theories. The right's fingerprints are all over his long list of grievances and motives. And these are communicated via the right-wing media, the same media now trying to disassociate themselves from him.

    And Somerby has no "media criticism" to offer on that. This should put an end to any idea that what Somerby does here is "musing on the mainstream media" (which includes Fox). Stochastic violence has never been discussed here. Somerby didn't even discuss 1/6. It is hard to discuss politics without acknowledging the highe violent right-wing elephant in the room.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Drum's post leaves out two key parts of this: 1) right-wing violence and threats of violence are the direct culmination of decades of Fox News and other right-wing media demonizing Dems, promoting conspiracy theories and lies (such as that the election was stolen), etc., and 2) Republican officials (Josh Hawley, Louie Gomert, MTG, etc.) have expressed support for and encouraged these right-wing terrorists, while other Republican officials have not been vocal enough in condemning violence.

  18. Russia (via contribution to a right-wing PAC) paid for an anti-Biden ad in the World Series broadcast. The main complaint seemed to be Biden's help to the Ukraine, which Russia is currently invading. Is this legal or is it meddling in US politics? How do they get away with doing this?

    And why isn't Somerby discussing it, instead of these trivial nitpicks about how Oz is paraphrased when he says something stupid -- and how much money Stephanie Ruhle has, even though she is not anywhere close to being as influential as Rachel Maddow.

    Ruhle earned every penny of her money from investment banking. If you doubt that, watch the HBO series "Industry". There is no amount of money that would compensate a person for enduring that kind of hazing. And now she is using her expertise to inform the public -- what a horrible, horrible thing to do, says Somerby.

    If Somerby ever had any sense of proportion about what is important to critique in the media, he lost it decades ago. I find myself wondering whether he ever had such an understanding, given his continuing obsession with trivial attacks on Al Gore -- attacks he could have easily turned aside had he been a competent politician. Gore was smart to leave politics. Somerby should do the same and get on with his life.

  19. According to Ron Filipkowski on Twitter:

    "The Pelosi attacker’s social media is filled with anti-Semitic memes, Holocaust denial, links to far-right websites, QAnon content, vaccine and election conspiracies.

    But the MAGA disinfo line going around with big and verified accounts is they were gay lovers who had a spat."

    This alternate account of the attack is being purposely spread by right-wing sites. This is how the right reacts when their fascist violence results in attack on a political adversary. They spread a lie about his sexuality that makes Paul Pelosi the bad guy. Never mind that being gay is no reason to attack anyone either.

    These people on the right are awful people, from Cecelia down to the scum with the hammer, directed by Lauren Boebert and MTG and their fellow travellers, JD Vance, Ronna McDaniels, and all of the other Republican filth.

    This is what Republicans are voting for, what they approve when they elect one of these MAGA Extremist nutcases. If that's you, you need to rethink your values. This ugly story about the 82-year old husband of Nancy Pelosi has made Grindr trend on Twitter, which is apparently the new right wing cesspool enabled by Elon Musk.

    Again, here is the Republican lack of shame in action. Trump may be a sociopath, according to Somerby, but so are the Republicans advancing this story about Pelosi to defend the weak-minded delusional person who attacked him. How long will it take Somerby to tell us that Pelosi brought this on himself? That is today's right wing talking point.

    1. "Republican lack of shame"
      Now a few Republicans are joining in the Democrat tradition of perpetuating unfounded narratives on social media for the same reason Democrats have done it for years. They can.

      "While the letter’s signatories presented no new evidence, they said their national security experience had made them “deeply suspicious that the Russian government played a significant role in this case” and cited several elements of the story that suggested the Kremlin’s hand at work.

      “If we are right,” they added, “this is Russia trying to influence how Americans vote in this election, and we believe strongly that Americans need to be aware of this.”

      Nick Shapiro, a former top aide under CIA director John Brennan, provided POLITICO with the letter on Monday. He noted that “the IC leaders who have signed this letter worked for the past four presidents, including Trump. The real power here however is the number of former, working-level IC officers who want the American people to know that once again the Russians are interfering.”

  20. Antifa loathes the Republican Party so much, they put it in their name.

  21. Here is some actual media criticism, from No More Mister Nice Blog:

    "When real-world events threaten to expose the GOP as a threat to American civilization, the party uses kettle logic -- multiple arguments, many of them incompatible with one another -- to rally both rabid and moderate party supporters, and to reassure fence-sitters that all evil lies elsewhere. Look at January 6: To the rabid base, the party's propagandists argued that the violence was justified, or was the work of Antifa or the FBI (or both), or that it was encouraged by Nancy Pelosi, who (they falsely claim) was personally and solely in charge of the Capitol Police. To voters in the middle, the response has been whataboutism: Remember when Antifa and Black Lives Matter burned down entire American cities? (Which didn't happen.) Why isn't there a select committee about that?

    The Republican responses to the attack on Paul Pelosi have begun to multiply, and while they're not truly incompatible yet, they're being doled out for different niche markets. As I noted yesterday, for the conspiracy-minded, the message is that Paul Pelosi's assailant was his gay lover. Republican Elon Musk is now rebroadcasting that disinformation. But that's aimed at the rabid right. There was still a need for a message reassuring to right-leaning moderates. How do you persuade them that this attack had nothing to do with conservative politics? You do what the NRA has been doing successfully for a decade to persuade Americans that horrible gun crimes have nothing to do with guns: You blame mental illness.

    And so we have Michael Shellenberger setting the terms of the debate in the New York Post with a piece titled "Pelosi Attack Suspect David DePape Was a Psychotic Homeless Addict Estranged from His Pedophile Lover & Their Children." Now, what Shellenberger tells us is ... not wrong. DePape does appear to be a mentally ill person who lived on the margins. (The "pedophile lover" was not a man. It was the mother of his two sons, who's been convicted of stalking a 14-year-old boy.)

    But most mentally ill people don't attack other people with weapons. And the fact that DePape is mentally ill doesn't mean that we should ignore the specific ideas coursing through his disordered mind.

    But ignoring them is precisely what the right wants normal people to do. He's mentally ill and that's all that matters."


    Somerby will be along tomorrow to tell us that this hammer wielding right wing tool of stochastic violence is to be pitied.

    1. If people would only stop criticizing Democrats and accept what Democrats tell them about elections, vaccines, Hunter's laptop, and the Steele dossier then no homeless psychotic will base his violence on rage against Democrats.

      We must continue to deplatform the New York Post and others when they report things, true or not, that would harm Democrats and we must promote pro-Democrat theories and do years long investigations to make sure no such thoughts enter the mind of a homeless psychotic.

    2. Criticize definition: indicate the faults of (someone or something) in a disapproving way

      Demonize definition: portray as wicked and threatening

      Vilify definition: speak or write about in an abusively disparaging manner

      @2:05 suggests that Democrats are complaining about being criticized. No, that isn't it. We are actually complaining about being demonized and vilified to the point that unstable MAGA followers engage in violence against us.

    3. CNN

      In the weeks before traveling to the Washington, DC area, the man accused of attempting to murder Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh researched how to assassinate individuals and said he would be “shooting for 3” justices, according to a search warrant application from the FBI.

      Nicholas Roske, who prosecutors say traveled to Kavanaugh’s home with a pistol, extra ammunition, a tactical knife and other gear, looked up terms like “most effective place to stab someone” and “quietest semi auto rifle,” the application states.

      As part of the investigation, FBI agents are requesting search warrants for Google accounts and online chatlogs they believe belong to Roske and included searches and online messages from Roske.

      In an online conversation on the messaging app Discord, Roske told an individual in May that he was “gonna stop roe v wade from being overturned” and that he would “remove some people from the supreme court,” according to the FBI.

      “Two dead judges ain’t gonna do nothing,” the unnamed user told Roske. “You would die before you killed them all.”

      Roske replied: “yeah but I could get at least one, which would change the votes for decades to come, and I am shooting for 3.”

      The search history on Roske’s phone, which investigators took from Roske when he was arrested and got a search warrant for the next day, also includes searches for “assassin skills” and equipment, “how to be stealthy” and the Supreme Court’s website listing current members.

    4. "tool of stochastic violence"? What does that mean?

    5. stochastic violence = stochastic terrorism

      It means that Republicans urge violence and identify the targets, but their stupid followers commit the violent acts.

      stochastic terrorism definition: "the public demonization of a person or group resulting in the incitement of a violent act, which is statistically probable but whose specifics cannot be predicted"

      More specifically:

      "Stochastic terrorism has been defined as the incitement of a violent act through public demonization of a group or individual.[5] Stated another way, the term has been said to mean “acts of violence by random extremists, triggered by political demagoguery.”[6] It describes a pattern that cannot be predicted precisely but can be
      analyzed statistically.[7] In other words, a specific act against the demonized person or group cannot be forecast, but the probability of an act occurring has increased due to the rhetoric of a public figure. There is no formal, legal definition of stochastic terrorism in statutory or case law. Indeed, it is an academic, rather than legal, term. The word stochastic means random, stemming from the Greek stochastikos, meaning “proceeding by
      guesswork” or “skillful in aiming”,[8] in contrast to determinism which is considered nonrandom. Terrorism has a number of statutory and research-oriented definitions, but in its simplest terms it refers to ideologically motivated or political violence against noncombatants, usually civilian populations. The joining of the two words, stochastic and terrorism, is originally attributable to mathematician and catastrophist Gordon Woo, who used the term to suggest a quantifiable relationship between seemingly random acts of terrorism and the goal of perpetuating fear through mass media’s coverage of the violence. Woo thought the pace of attacks
      may be driven to an extent by the way news coverage of them unfolded.[9] The term was next taken up by anonymous blogger G2geek, who reversed the order and described it as incitement to violence through mass communication—speech first, then violence."

      "“Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?” These infamous words, attributed to Henry II of England, ominously preceded the Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Beckett’s murder in 1170. To be clear, the king neither participated in, nor ordered, the notorious assassination, yet he is widely accepted as being largely responsible for it...There has never been a credible suggestion that Henry II ordered violence against the archbishop. What his speech did, however, was trigger a chain of events directly ending in murder and making that result
      much more likely to occur than if he had never spoken.

    6. Importantly, Roske didn't actually attack Kavanaugh. He walked past his house, then called 911 on himself to prevent himself from doing something terrible.

    7. "Stochastic violence" is the latest newly minted phrase in the same category as "your children will commit suicide if you don't castrate them." It's an invented concept intended to create fear and control thoughts and words of political opponents for the purpose of advancing an unpalatable ideological agenda.

    8. Importantly Roske had a sister and she answered her phone that day, so he changed his mind about murdering Justice Kavanaugh as planned.

    9. Stochastic terrorism is not newly minted. It is a phenomenon studied by those who study terrorism. I quoted from an academic paper on the subject -- by European professors not Democrats.

      Roske was near Kavanaugh's house, but he has pled not guilty and is awaiting mental health evaluation before his trial.

      "Spotted by two U.S. marshals who were part of 24-hour security provided to the justices, Roske was apprehended after he called 911 and told a police dispatcher that he was near Kavanaugh's home and wanted to take his own life."

      As the situation developed, Roske didn't actually make an attempt on Kavanaugh's life, and certainly didn't hit him or attack him with any weapon, unlike what happend to Nancy Pelosi's husband Paul, who underwent surgery for a fractured skull. The charges won't be the same because what Roske did was not the same.

    10. "Deranged Roske is less worrisome than deranged Depape because he changed his mind which he was destined to do, because the difference is only the right can commit stochastic terrorism that ends in violence. Stochastic terroism, a term that has been commonplace forever even though every gender confused fourteen year old began using it on Twitter in the last two months."

      Yeah go with that.

    11. "In other words, a specific act against the demonized person or group cannot be forecast, but the probability of an act occurring has increased due to the rhetoric of a public figure. "

      It's a real thing. In addition to the attempted murder of Justice Kavanaugh, the lies and hate of CNN and MSNBC and most Democrat party officials caused the murder of these officers and countless others since.

      DALLAS — The heavily armed sniper who gunned down police officers in downtown Dallas, leaving five of them dead, specifically set out to kill as many white officers as he could, officials said Friday. He was a military veteran who had served in Afghanistan, and he kept an arsenal in his home that included bomb-making materials.

      The gunman turned a demonstration against fatal police shootings this week of black men in Minnesota and Louisiana from a peaceful march focused on violence committed by officers into a scene of chaos and bloodshed aimed against them.

      The shooting was the kind of retaliatory violence that people have feared through two years of protests around the country against deaths in police custody, forcing yet another wrenching shift in debates over race and criminal justice that had already deeply divided the nation.

    12. Given that the left didn’t use violent rhetoric, it seems more likely those events happened because of police violence against black people. Arguably, Paul Pelosi did nothing to make himslf a target.

    13. Violence is overwhelmingly a right wing phenomenon. A single case doesn’t change that.

      I do think that deciding not to shoot someone is hugely different than shooting them, especially to the target.

      This equating right wing rhetoric with anything on the left is a false equivalency. The left has nothing like 1/6 or the Whitmer kidnapping or the hate-related mass shootings or this attempted assassination of a top political figure, or driving trucks through protests or point-blank shooting protesters. Nothing.

    14. The problem Democrats have with Kavanaugh is that he's a sexual predator, he couldn't explain who got him out of debt (he's compromised), and that he lied under oath during the Senate Judiciary hearings.
      Republicans, on the other hand, know those are the reasons he's now on the Supreme Court.

    15. Oh you need more? How about the attempted mass murder of Republicans playing softball, by yet another Democrat activist, which almost took the life of Steve Scalise?

    16. ALBANY, N.Y. — Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin was attacked during an upstate campaign stop for governor Thursday evening.

      Zeldin, who is challenging Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul in November, was speaking at a VFW in Fairport near Rochester to kick off a four-day “Unite to Fire Hochul” bus tour when a man climbed on stage and allegedly attempted to stab him, according to a statement by the Zeldin campaign. Zeldin was not injured.

    17. Issue there is that it wasn't stochastic.

    18. All the acts of violence against right leaning figures that you mentioned were committed by normal Americans who had just gone a little funny in the head.

      Conversely, the acts of violence against left-leaning figures like the attempted assassination with a hammer by the nudist are organized acts of a fascist movement that has been growing for some time now. A very pernicious and stochastic movement.

    19. "How about the attempted mass murder of Republicans playing softball, by yet another Democrat activist, which almost took the life of Steve Scalise?"

      Poor career move. If he shot a Democrat, he'd have his own show on Fox News by now.

    20. The problem is the violent rhetoric that sets off the shooters. There is much more of it on the right, so more resulting violence. Are you saying that MTG and Boebert are crazy too? I might agree with that.

    21. Stop being so stochastic.

    22. What is the violent rhetoric?

    23. Have you not seen either of them?

    24. When the “liberal media” made a federal case about caustic comic Kathy Griffin taking a gag photo with a statue, President Trump had already talked
      about the Second Amendment people
      “taking care” of Hillary Clinton. For
      which the liberal media never held
      him to account.

    25. That's the violent rhetoric the differentiates the people who attack political figures on the left from the people who attack political figures on the right?

  22. Colorado Newsline illustrates how a journalist, in this case Chase Woodruff, can and should debunk false claims in both the headlines and text of a news report. The headline reads:

    "O’Dea repeats false Bennet legislation claim as Colorado’s U.S. Senate race nears finish line
    GOP challenger cites misleading search result for Bennet-sponsored legislation"

    Later, in text, Woodruff explains the basis for O'Dea's false
    claim that Bennet passed only one bill in 13 years, by describing the process for passing legislation and describing Bennet's actual record:

    "Bennet was right. O’Dea’s false claim — which is also being spread by his campaign staff and allies, and appears in a new TV ad — rests on a misleading search result on a government website and a misunderstanding of how legislation is routinely passed in Congress.

    Dozens of individual pieces of legislation sponsored by Bennet have been signed into law after they were added via amendment to larger appropriations or omnibus bills, according to a Newsline review of the congressional record.

    Many of the approved amendments are easily traceable using functions on, the official website maintained by the Library of Congress. Others are harder-to-track cases in which Bennet-authored legislation appeared in a larger bill as it was newly introduced, or won passage in a companion bill from the House of Representatives.

    The legislation includes the expanded child tax credit, first introduced by Bennet in 2017 as the American Family Act, and incorporated as a one-year benefit in the 2021 American Rescue Plan. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the $550 billion bipartisan spending package passed by Congress later that year, included at least seven major provisions that originated as Bennet-sponsored legislation.

    Sections from many of those bills, like a measure aimed at increasing broadband access, were copied almost word-for-word into the text of the bipartisan infrastructure law. Others, like a Bennet-sponsored proposal to regulate orphaned oil and gas wells, underwent more significant revisions before passage."

    By explaining how the mistaken claim arose and correcting it, Woodruff not only corrects the record for Bennet but also illustrates how Republican dirty tricks are constructed, educating voters about how to evaluate claims and watch out for flim flam. Unfortunately, those who watch O'Dea's misleading attack ads against Bennet will not have the benefit of Woodruff's article at hand. Exposing such cons may be an important function of debates, giving Bennet a chance to answer smears, except those arising in the final days before an election.

  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

  24. Al Franken had an excellent guest on his show. We may have already lost our democracy:

  25. member slot เว็บสล็อตที่ใหญ่ที่สุด สมัครเว็บไม่มีอันตราย100% pg slot มาพร้อมโปรโมชั่นพิเศษมากมายเว็บตรงแตกไวได้เงินจริง สำหรับผู้ที่กำลังมองหาเว็บพนันออนไลน์ ไม่ควรพลาด!

  26. "Stochastic" is going to be one of those he/him words that will piss off another 5% of voters and drive them to the GOP.