June 15, 2016

As mass murderers change from "angry white men" to bitter immigrants, discussion shifts from alienation to choice of weapons

Now that liberals are going into overdrive about gun control in the wake of another massacre, you have probably seen disingenuous charts showing statistics about "mass shootings" -- when what really matters is mass murder. We don't ignore 9/11 and the Boston marathon bombing, just because they used planes flown into buildings and pressure-cooker bombs rather than guns.

These three attacks are only a handful of examples of radical Islamic terrorism, which makes the gun control people feel anxiety not only because they tend to involve weapons far worse than guns, but because it raises problems for their agenda of ethnic and cultural pluralism.*

So, rather than address the safety problems of importing millions of Muslims into our country, they try to make it seem like Muslims are no worse than the folks in flyover country who have produced mass murderers of their own. (For the sake of argument, let's put aside the obvious objections that the per capita rate of terrorism is orders of magnitude higher for Muslims, and that we don't need to add to an existing problem by importing more trouble-makers.)

Who are these mass murderers from flyover country? It's shocking how little the phrase "Oklahoma City bombing" comes up among the gun control / "whites are just as evil as Muslims" crowd. It would seem to be tailor-made for their narrative -- two white guys from the Great Lakes region, paranoid about the Federal Gubmint, deadliest domestic terrorist attack in America and killing the most other than 9/11.

What gives? First, they made a bomb, which doesn't fit the narrative of controlling guns.

But more importantly, it would lead us to ask what the motivation was, what the psychology was, what were the sociological forces at play, and so on. Liberals don't want to go down that road because it would lead us to ask the exact same questions about radical Islamic terrorists, and come to similar conclusions -- centering around bitter alienation from society, leading them to violently lash out at an entire group that they view as their tormentors.

However, in the case of jihadists, it would lead ordinary Americans to the common sense solution to keep Muslims out of our country -- where most of them are bound to feel alienated -- which is a non-starter for white Americans of founding stock who feel alienated.

Uh-oh, different solutions for seemingly similar problems -- a big no-no, no matter how impossible it would be to attain parity (by deporting white people from America).

In order to prevent ordinary Americans from coming to the conclusion to keep most Muslims out of a country where they appear to be incompatible, liberals must first prevent them from focusing on the bitter alienation that a typical Muslim feels in America (or any other Western country).

It doesn't matter what aspects of our culture make them feel so out-of-place, the end result is that they do inevitably feel this way, to varying degrees. But it's not hard to think of several -- a more libertine code of conduct than in their more puritanical culture, adhering more to a culture of law than a culture of honor, and one that is more secular and even blasphemous than religious and pious.

This is a similar line of investigation as there used to be into the phenomenon of "angry white men" -- coming up with a basic psychological profile, demographic description, and looking at how sociological changes may be at play (declining working-class incomes, women as breadwinners, multicultural values in mainstream culture, bullying at school, and so on).

But whereas the study of angry white men led to tough questions about how they can become better integrated into society -- like the Trump program of bringing back high-paying manufacturing jobs and ending political correctness -- the study of bitter alienated Muslims leads instead to the other Trump program of "they all gotta go back". They're not rooted here, and don't need to be here. They may still be bitter back home, but that's their homeland's problem, not ours. We can help out from afar, but we won't be taking them in, which will only exacerbate their sense of bitter alienation.

It's shocking how quickly the interest in understanding mass murder has evaporated, even as it has become more common. As recently as 2002, uber-liberal director Michael Moore released Bowling for Columbine, which looked into the psychology and sociology behind mass murder by angry white men. It did touch on gun control, but that was not the main focus since he spent the other half focusing on the Oklahoma City bombers. Toward the climax, Marilyn Manson is interviewed to provide a window into the minds of alienated white youth, and he emphasizes better social integration of kids like the Columbine shooters, rather than a pat answer about gun control.

When you consider the implications for immigration, though, the blindness to social forces in mass murder makes perfect sense. We don't better culturally integrate Muslims, since they themselves feel that to be more or less impossible without America accepting governance under sharia law. We just stay here in our country, and they stay over in theirs.

And now that we aren't allowed to inquire into the human factors, we can only discuss the inanimate weapons that the mass murderers choose. Not being total morons, the liberal side doesn't try to argue against airplanes that could be hijacked, or plant fertilizer that could be used in another Oklahoma City bombing. Guns are familiar enough, and provide enough of a gray area for debate to proceed (the upside and downside of each class of firearm is not as crystal clear as it is for planes and fertilizer).

Ignoring the social and cultural alienation behind mass murder has proceeded for so long only because there hasn't been a Donald Trump to cut straight to the chase -- restoring the dignity of blue-collar white men, while keeping culturally incompatible foreigners out. Once we begin an era of America-first populism, mass murder will recede back to the levels of the Midcentury. Changing the political climate won't happen overnight, but it's the only real choice to solve these problems, not bickering back and forth about gun control.

* I'm using "liberal" rather than the more accurate encompassing term of "globalist" because we're talking about the gun control debate. Conservative globalists like Bush, Romney, Ryan, McCain, etc. have a similar agenda of forced ethnic pluralism, but they don't turn to gun control as the solution to the inevitable violence that stems from deep cultural incompatibility. Conservative globalists are more into mass surveillance of threats than literally disarming them.

Therefore, this post could be copied for the debate over mass surveillance. As with gun control, keeping out Muslims also solves the problem of having to cast such a wide surveillance net on Americans.


  1. Mark Ames said that "going postal" emerged in the 80s with the erosion of unions and job security and the introduction of hyperindividualistic striving culture replacing any sense of community.

  2. Johnny Caustic6/15/16, 2:20 PM

    I'm pretty sure you're mistaken that "mass murder will recede back to the levels of the Midcentury" until the other main cause is also abolished: a great many anti-depressant and anti-psychotic drugs (especially SSRIs).

  3. Prescription drug abuse was actually the norm back in the Midcentury, reflecting the cocooning trend more than the status-striving trend.


    The link seems to be that cocooning makes people anxious and depressed, and they tend to be more thing-oriented than people-oriented, therefore favoring tech solutions rather than social solutions:


  4. Peter Turchin has a good post / review of Mark Ames' book, tying it to rising inequality:


  5. Now we have the perfect storm of male underemployment/poor job security with prescription dependence AND cocooning/helicopter parenting; only the former was present in most of the 80s

  6. Johnny Caustic6/16/16, 3:33 AM

    Prescription drug abuse was actually the norm back in the Midcentury, reflecting the cocooning trend more than the status-striving trend.

    The drugs that cause suicidal and homicidal ideation did not exist in midcentury. To the best of my knowledge, the first to achieve any widespread use was fluoxetine (Prozac), which was approved in 1987. I don't know of any drug that existed prior to 1987 that was/is widely taken and is known to cause extreme violent thoughts in a substantial minority of users.

    These drugs that turn ordinary people into mass murderers really are something new under the sun.

    I don't discount your ideas about cycles of cocooning and status-striving having an influence on these crimes, but don't get so blindered that you stop considering non-sociological causes. For the minority of people whom SSRIs give fantasies of suicide and murder, those fantasies can be incredibly powerful.

  7. I dunno about drugs. It seems like status insecurity became a significant problem in the 80's. People felt distraught if they weren't getting ahead fast enough, or worse, that there was no where to turn if they got in over their head. These things were getting bad in the 80's but of course they got really bad in the subsequent decades. Corruption, the reign of greedy banks and insurance companies, heartless mult-nationals, demanding that people go into debt to be competitive in the job market, etc.

    With so much exploitation and so little help available, it's easier to fall into rage or despair if you're life gets tougher. Thus, why mass murders became much more common. In the 80's people had enough of a bond with friends and acquaintances that we didn't see too many people go totally beserk. But once cocooning set in in the 90's, all hell broke loose.

    I don't reject the idea that drugs can destabilize behavior. Just the same, the fact that such crap is sold and way too little is done about it is another sign of how corrupt high inequality periods are. As is mass murder.

  8. I imagine that absent moral standards the left has entered a cul de sac where they cannot condemn any moral philosophy, only the results. They cannot condemn Islamic Jihadism, only guns used by the Jihadists.


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