Category Archives: Firearms

School Shootings: A Moral-Health, Not Mental-Health, Problem


By ilana mercer

The tele-experts assert that to do what he did—kill 10 and maim 13, at Santa Fe High School, in Texas—Dimitrios Pagourtzis had to be insane.

Likewise, Nikolas Cruz—killer of 17 in Parkland, Florida—and many shooters before him: All were victims of mental disorder. Or, so say the experts.

Come to think of it, the structure of argument coming from conservative and progressive corners is the same:

Conservatives blame mental health.

Progressives blame the National Rifle Association.

Both factions see the locus of responsibility for these murder sprees as beyond the reach and bailiwick of the individual and of what were once formative and corrective institutions: the church, for example.

As the language deployed in the culture might suggest, crimes aren’t committed, but are caused. Perpetrators don’t do the crime, but are driven to do their deeds by a confluence of uncontrollable factors.

The paradox at the heart of the disease theory of delinquency is that causal theoretical explanations are invoked only after bad deeds have been committed. Good deeds, however extravagant, are in no need of extenuation.

The evidence our tele-therapists advance for a killer’s “madness” is … the murder or murders he has committed.

Whatever the logical fallacy the psychiatrists commit—circular reasoning or backward reasoning—thinking people can agree: This is bad logic.

Fact: When they suggest a shooter is sick, they do so based on the fact that he committed murder.

Let’s run with this “logic”: The reductio ad absurdum of what the mental-health mavens are saying is that to kill, an individual must be deranged.

Does that not imply that the default condition of humanity is goodness?

Indeed, evil has been cast as a symptom of illness. It’s certainly so if to judge by the language used by the experts.

This is dangerous, because evil responds to punishment, not to kid gloves, which is what medicalizing misbehavior amounts to.

The more we medicalize dysfunctional conduct, the more of it we will get.

Why? Because the therapist’s couch—the chaise longue sofa in the movies—or his hallucinogens are a lot more pleasant than the hard work involved in reforming conduct and character.

Pleasant is a reward. Reward evil and you’ll get more of it.

That’s where the disease theory of delinquency leads. It rules out evil and brings us closer to marginalizing goodness.

By all means, scan the brains of shooters in search of significant pathology. You’ll find none—not when variables like drug-taking are controlled for, and when the absence of baseline measurements for comparison purposes is factored-in.

Moreover, most individuals classified as mentally ill do not murder.

See, evil is part of the human condition, always has been, always will be. Evil can’t be wished away, treated away, medicated away or legislated away. Evil is here to stay.

Bad people—little Damiens included—do bad things. All the more so when barriers to bad behavior are removed across the board, and when everything goes.

The infamous Nikolas Cruz was a feral boy bereft of family, friends, faith and church affiliation. Cruz was loosely attached to a sprawling, impersonal, school system that taught him and his peers about safe sex, but shielded them from the Ten Commandments.

His example of systemic institutional failure typifies instances of school shootings across America.

Failure of state institutions—FBI, education and social services—and failure of familial and faith-based institutions came together to dreadful effect. The latter, in particular, are no longer there for bad boys in the forceful, firm way they need.

Ultimately, the disease theory of delinquency is as morally fraught as it is logically wrong. You will never solve pervasive problems of character and morality, personal and societal, by medicalizing them.

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Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She is the author of “Into the Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa (2011) & “The Trump Revolution: The Donald’s Creative Destruction Deconstructed (June, 2016). She’s on Twitter, Facebook, Gab & YouTube

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The Teachers’ Pets Of Douglas High, Florida, Can’t Think Straight


By ilana mercer

“In America,” observed as Oscar Wilde, “the young are always ready to give to those who are older than themselves the full benefits of their inexperience.”

So it is with the activist kids who’ve emerged from the Parkland, Florida, school massacre of February 14th, in which 17 of their own were murdered.

Each one sounds like the proverbial teacher’s pet, groomed to take a monolithic message to the media.

Like their educators, these one-track minds “don’t impress me much.” The National Rifle Association (NRA) they invariably frame as big, bad and greedy; government as not big enough, generally good and certainly benign.

There are, indubitably, good arguments to be made against the NRA. The kids—who managed to be, for the most, rude, ungrammatical, sanctimonious and smarmy—failed to muster them.

Trained pets that they are, the dogged media kids of Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High seemed capable of focusing only on the one causal factor to the exclusion of all others: guns, their legal purveyors and their law-abiding owners.

The students who were front-and-center on the idiot’s lantern were unwilling to hold the shyster sheriff, Scott Israel, and his notoriously iffy Broward County department, responsible for—there is no way to finesse it—enabling, indulging, even grooming killer Nikolas Cruz over years. To students, the Broward County Sheriff’s Office (BSO) was blameless. Lackluster logic led them to the NRA alone.

One young media darling told of his love of Civics classes. This, while refusing to consider the state’s role in what were systemic and systematic failures.

Reliably derelict and criminally negligent, Sheriff Israel and his Broward County law enforcement didn’t “slip-up.” As a matter of progressive policies and philosophy, sheriff and officers had decided against protecting the people they had sworn to protect.

The BSO has been practicing the progressive penal abolition and restorative justice models of crime “prevention.” Yet our auditioning activists have refused to do their basic civic duty: hold this branch of government accountable for its end of the civic compact.

Out of the mouths of babes we hear that officer Scot Petersen and his compadres—they milled about outside Douglas High, while inside children were being riddled by bullets—were mere NRA scapegoats.

Almost unanimously unmoved were the kids by the fact the BSO had received 45 desperate calls over years, detailing homicidal threats made by the killer and violent, deviant altercations in which he was embroiled. Thirty-nine times had the Broward Sheriff’s officers visited the Cruz home in seven years. A critical mass of criminality and pathology was discounted by law-enforcement in ways at once callous, stupid and depravedly indifferent.

The one civic-minded kid could recite the purpose of a bicameral legislature, but cared not a bit about the imperative of government to protect life, liberty and property. Or, about the role of the Second Amendment in mitigating the effects of such a dangerous government. Likewise was the FBI given a pass for being  every bit as criminally culpable as the Broward County sheriff and his lawful crime syndicate.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is a repeat offender.

Coined by Patrick Pool, a national security and terrorism correspondent, the term “Known Wolf” denotes the relationship between the FBI and the dangerous criminals it’s supposed to neutralize. In almost all of America’s major terrorist attacks—and in the Florida, Parkland, school shooting, too—the FBI failed to stop well-known wolves. As far as I can tell, Parkland is the first time this rogue agency has admitted wrongdoing.

The good news for those of us who view government as the greater evil: The NRA has now been pitted against the FBI, and that’s an extra check on power.

Back to the kids: To top it all off, when asked what would make him feel safe enough to return to school, teacher’s pet du jour replied: “legislation.” He’s not going back to school until anti-gun legislation has been drafted.

Here’s a quick verbal drill for children whose minds have been turned into mush by menopausal, hippie teachers (those with the Y Chromosome, included): There’s an active shooter in school. What do you do? Reach for legislation? Remind the frenetically active shooter that he is flouting the legislation? Not quite.

You shelter in place, hunker down, look for an escape, run to a designated panic room or shelter. All the while, you hope the officers who took an oath to protect you don’t take a hiatus, as did Sheriff Scott Israel’s officers.

Another mantra kids keep regurgitating is that “authentic” learning requires complete freedom of access, open spaces and indiscriminate inclusivity. All cardinal lies and illogic.

To that effect, teachers have already been waxing fat: “Security makes us feel sad.” [Isn’t feeling sad better than being dead?] “We’re here to learn and to teach.” [Since when are safety and scholarship mutually exclusive?] Ultimately, the strength of ideas rests on their relationship to reality. Contrary to the teachers who’re force-feeding students their uniform and uninformed ideas, the schools must be fortified.

Fortresses are facts of history. If young ignoramuses learned more history and less “social studies” and the imperative of activism; they’d know that since antiquity, fortification has protected and facilitated civilization.

Learning requires peace of mind. If fortress conditions are a prerequisite for survival—if fortification keeps the barbarians at bay—then the rational mind will find tranquility in security.

As a traditional libertarian, never a libertine, this writer agrees with the activist students of Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High on one matter. If anything has been affirmed by the heartbreaking murder of 17 people, it is that teens should not own guns. Even a cerebrally compromised biology teacher at a progressive school would surely second that, in individuals so young, the capacity for higher-level abstraction and advanced reasoning is not fully developed.

An effort by retailers, not by regulators, to limit gun purchases by teens (practice and proficiency can still be pursued under adult supervision), should, ideally, be accompanied by efforts to repeal the Twenty-Sixth Amendment, smuggled into the Constitution by statute, to lower the voting age from 21 to 18, and artificially swell the ranks of Democratic voters.

Kids are Democrats by default.

And, if 18 is too young to vote, or to purchase firearms—18 is also too young to enlist!

“We are going to outlive these old men in congress,” declared a Douglas High School activist defiantly. Ageism is apparently quite fine when leveled at older white men. Well, then, let us agree that the wily “old men” in power should not be allowed to entice the young and the gullible to serve as cannon fodder in the recreational wars they routinely prosecute.

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Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She is the author of “Into the Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa (2011) & “The Trump Revolution: The Donald’s Creative Destruction Deconstructed” (June, 2016). She’s on Twitter, Facebook, Gab & YouTube

How To Beat Terrorism


How To Beat Terrorism
by L. Neil Smith

Attribute to L. Neil Smith’s The Libertarian Enterprise

Away, way back in 1977, when I began writing my first novel, _The Probability Broach_ (still in print, after four decades), I was regarded as something of a nutcase because I argued that American society would be a much better, safer place if everybody who wanted to, carried a gun. I was by no means the first to do so, nor was I the only one at the time, but, except for Robert A. Heinlein, Elmer Keith, and the ghost of H. Beam Piper, I often felt very much alone in my simple, straightforward, common-sense advocacy of exercising one’s natural rights under the Second Amendment to the Constitution. Now, of course, forty years later, armed self-defense has become a social movement. The degree to which I share responsibility for that is debatable, but I am proud of any part I may have had in it. Read more

Theresa May: The Mummy Dissolves?


NB – This essay is an entirely personal view. It does not constitute an endorsement or condemnation by the Libertarian Alliance of any candidate in the present General Election. SIG

Theresa May: The Mummy Dissolves?
by Sean Gabb
7th June 2017

Now it is a generation since his more orthodox followers were pointing nuclear missiles at us, it is safe to admit that Karl Marx was rather a good writer. His journalism, in particular, is always worth a read. Here he is, on the fate of the Chinese Empire as it emerged from the first Opium War: Read more

Jihad’s Triumph On Westminster Bridge


By ilana mercer

The attacks keep coming. Murder or maiming by Muslims living among us is an almost daily occurrence in the West. The latest was knifeman Khalid Masood, who plowed a car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, London, and then proceeded to slash at them with a 12-inch blade. Immoral media counted five dead, with the killer. In addition to the four murdered, 50 people were injured. Read more

Let The Gun Market Close Government Loopholes


By ilana mercer

It’s award time at the Department of Homeland Security. So fleeting has been the focus on the systemic, intractable failures of the DHS apparatus—that failed functionaries feel sufficiently at ease to move on to the business of backslapping and promotion.

But first, the latest outrage to emerge from Barack Hussein Obama’s Islamophilic Federal Bureau of Investigation is this: It transpires a friend of Orlando mass murderer Omar Saddiqui Mateen had done his duty and reported Mateen to the FBI. Read more

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