Some thoughts on word salad

It’s been a bit surreal today to focus on NFL Wild Card games while at the same time going to the obvious and not-so-obvious corners of z’netz looking for information on the tragedy in Arizona today. Here’s a good image to start with:

The alleged shooter has been identified as Jared Loughner, and that thumbnail represents what are allegedly his final thoughts. This is what his YouTube page looked like within an hour or so of the shooting:

I have read all but three of the book listed at the bottom this page in the image above, including the five that are drawing the most attention:

  1. We The Living, by Ayn Rand
  2. The Communist Manifesto, by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels
  3. Mein Kampf, by Adolf Hitler
  4. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
  5. Animal Farm, by George Orwell

So, here’s my question, and it implies what is bothering me about all of this, and this question usually doesn’t bother me when Something Big happens: what does it say about the society in which we live that all sides of the political spectrum are rushing to label this man as a Liberal or a Conservative?


Word Salad is a term you will recognize if you have studied much psychology (I would assume – I have not) or if you have spent much time in a psychiatric hospital around schizophrenics (I have – three tours for depression, thanks). You can Google it if you want, but the common way to recognize word salad, as a layman, is through three related, interchangeable behaviors:

  1. Logorrhea, the inability to shut up
  2. Jabberwocky, the ability to say things that are structurally correct but completely meaningless
  3. Graphomania, the compulsion to write, write some more, then some more, then some more, and then some more and never stop

I point all this out, couched in allegedly and supposed and accused because, from what I’ve seen of what the suspect has produced intellectually, he was batshit – through-and-through schizophrenic. I have no credentials to back that up beyond what I’ve experienced among so many schizophrenics as a patient, along with what I’ve read.


From the two pieces of information I supplied in the graphics, the suspect clearly demonstrates what word salad looks like – his happens to be of the written Jabberwocky variety. Read it closely, and it resembles something that could make sense, but it does not make sense.

What is so surreal is that in the wake of a mass killing, complete with a dead Federal judge, a dead 9-year-old girl, and a three-term Congresswoman who somehow has so far survived a point-blank head shot, is that a crude number of people have engaged in guessing the man’s politics.

Here’s what I think after following this all day, after scrolling through thousands of comments, news stories, images, Tweets, more comments, etc: this man was mentally ill to an obviously dangerous degree, and those who want to play politics with that and the deaths and injuries to those involved today should be ashamed of themselves. He might turn out to be an anacrho-communist, he might turn out to be a Tea Party enthusiast, he might turn out to have best-sellers by O’Reilly, Olberman, Beck, Moore, Palin, et al. He might have strange taste in art, sublime taste in music and unusually good at math.

Putting all that aside, severe mental illness trumps it. If the writings and videos posted by the alleged shooter are his thoughts, words and deeds, then his politics have nothing to do with the validity or lack thereof of any political system, politician, etc. I say that knowing exactly how the Left is trying to spin this and how the Right is trying to spin it. A graphic by Sarah Palin, a “dead to me” piece at Kos, a reading of Rand or of Marx, all of it is completely immaterial – I’ll stake whatever credibility I do or do not have on the fact that, if those are the shooter’s writings, he was and is insane and his politics are immaterial.

I am a Sarah Palin supporter. As I wrote yesterday, she is my preferred candidate for the GOP in 2012. As a supporter, let’s assume what is currently being implied by the Left is true: Sarah Palin put a graphic out of the country, and in that graphic there were scope crosshairs on districts she thought were winnable; furthermore, Gov. Palin has used the term “reload” in a political context. These two pieces of information were taken by the shooter – for the sake of argument a fanatical Sarah Palin fan – and read as a psychic message that, since his Congresswoman was one of the officeholder in a targeted district – concluded that Sarah Palin wanted him to kill said Congresswoman.

Blaming Sarah Palin, even as an ancillary character is this man’s madness, is akin to blaming Jody Foster for the assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan.

This. Is. Insanity.

No one on the right or the left is culpable for this man’s alleged mental illness nor his alleged actions today, and I’d caution either side in trying to use that stick to beat this issue, because there is ample evidence – especially on the Left – of threatening rhetoric and physical assault on people with opposing views. Let’s not forget that Americas political assassins fall into one of two categories: Batshit or Leftist.

This man was Batshit. It won’t be left at that, which is too bad, because it should be.

Crisis meets opportunity: what a cynical, sick worldview.

He’s probably crazy – what’s everyone else’s excuse?

Another view here.


About godsowncrunk
I'm King B, the originator of the Jellywhite lyrical style and god's own crunk.

One Response to Some thoughts on word salad

  1. Eric says:

    Well said, pretty much sums up my opinion as well.

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