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Apr 17, 2007

Business, Glam And Virginia Tech

“Business remains at the heart of our culture, nationally and globally,” he said. “The traditional business magazines have had trouble capturing and expressing that excitement in recent years, and the ad market has reflected that, but I think the tide is turning.”

-- Robert Safian, Editor and managing director of Fast Company. Former executive editor of Fortune.

(Click right arrow to start slide show.  Click on double row of boxes to see individual slides.)

Portfolio Magazine article: Weapons-of-Mass-Production - link. Portfolio Weapons Of Mass Production slideshow.  NYT article: In a Troubled Time, a New Business Magazine - link.  NYT article: ‘Horror and Disbelief’ at Virginia Tech - link.  NYT Virginia Tech slide show - link.

(Portfolio photos: Christopher Griffith.  Virginia Tech image 1: Win McNamee/Getty Images. April 16, 2007.  Virginia.  image 2: Mannie Garcia/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images. Blacksburg. image 3: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters.  all via


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The Troubled(sic) Times is the troubled times, is part of the reason for troubled times, having helped to bring about the troubled times by making slick arguments in its pages for war, and for its promotions of unbridled consumption in its pages, feeding envy and unnecessary desire for things one doesn't need.

Is the tide turning? Someone (Imus) finally gets canned for the same crap we hear everywhere, every day. Paul Krugman says the Democrats are finally being "dragged by their base into taking highly popular positions." Will this make someone, somewhere, finally take a stand against the gun culture?

...a quarter-century ago, my father-in-law brought back from an arms show several brochures. It's not "new" to have glamorous, sexy advertisements for war machines--although the "personal" firepower seems more prevalent recently.

"...Virginia imposes few restrictions on the purchase of handguns and no requirement for any kind of licensing or training. The state does limit handgun purchases to one per month to discourage bulk buying and resale, state officials said.

"Once a person had passed the required background check, state law requires that law enforcement officers issue a concealed carry permit to anyone who applies. However, no regulations and no background checks are required for purchase of weapons at a Virginia gun show..."

A Symptom of our "Chain Letter Society"?

Read an analysis of the influences in our "Chain Letter Society" that may be precipitating events like the tragedy at Virginia Tech and how our focus on winning and being number one may be fostering a generation of children with fully inadequate coping skills who have a misguided sense of

Whether it was truly a black op is something we'll probably never know for sure. But I have little doubt that the incident will be swiftly exploited by gun control advocates.

Au contraire.

(1) Va Tech rules forbid students from carrying or storing hand guns on campus.

(2) The gun grabbers claim that our lives are best protected by the "Geheime Staatspolizei" but according to MSNBC it took the bureaucrats TWO HOURS to react to the mayhem

(3) Students were not able to respond to the carnage - so the gun grabbers have blood on their hands and their stupid consciences,

the son of bitches

"I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." Thomas Jefferson - Founding Father & Insurgent


Note also the proximity to Washington DC, just like the Annapolis snipers. Close enough to the Capitol to get Congressional fear drummed up.

I would expect some very draconian firearm control laws to be forthcoming soon. They are likely already written, thousands of pages long and will be sent to Congress on the same day they vote on them... passing unread.

Americans will relieve their feelings of anxious vulnerability with self-righteous anger as they embrace their media-driven FRAME = illusion that, “Thank God, the mass murderer was not one of us.”

Pundits will interpret the issue as somehow relating to "immigration" = an alien presence.

Specifically, Republicans will amplify or enact new policies to Police the Legal = Student and Professional (H1B) Visas, while doing the wink-wink, no enforcement nudge (with the blessing of Democrats / Liberals!) to adopt a de facto, i daresay hideous policy of indentured servitude for millions of Hispanic and Asian working-class men and women.

Gun Control, BAGman? oh, come on! Not even Gun Regulation. Besides, future historians will look back at the what, unfathomable annual slaughter on American Highways as "an accepted ritual of human sacrifice by this American Culture, similar to the ritual slaughter of, e.g., the Aztec Empire, ~500 years prior."

auel, Va. Tech doesn't allow students to carry guns, but how would they know, when a student can have a permit to carry a concealed weapon? (Did this guy buy the guns legally anyway?) Apparently you'd like the idea of having gunfights in the classrooms, like in a cowboy movie?

If you're talking about the same snipers I'm thinking of, they were in the Washington suburbs. Va. Tech is far from Washington; it's a different world. If you're suggesting that this was a conspiracy to get Congress to pass gun-control laws, then there are plenty of universities in Washington, D.C. and its suburbs that would have made better choices. And don't worry... As Monsieur Gonzo noted, there's no way Congress will pass gun control laws anyway.

(Monsieur Gonzo, I don't know about the average American, but I can tell you that there were millions of Arabs and Muslims holding their breath until they identified the gunman; then it was, “Thank God, the mass murderer was not one of us.” Not that they ever mentioned his religion, that I've heard - which certainly wouldn't be the case if he were Muslim.)

Since we deal with the use of photos here... We had turned on the TV to see what was going on, and then drifted into the other room. The woman on MSNBC said they had new photos available, so my sons (aged 6, 8, 10 and 12) were curious to see them. As they got there, ironically, the woman was giving a long warning about how these were graphic photos, and this was the time to usher the children out of the room. My kids were amazed that they made such a big deal of warning us about the photos (which were not that graphic anyway), when you can turn on the TV at any time and see violence, blood and gore on TV shows and movies - not to mention video games.

the shooter as psychological misfit of American Culture

overly influenced by Militainment

if the socialists opinion (wsw link * below) carries some weight, watch out Naval College!

what ever the casual factors the fact is; "The United States has by far the highest rate of gun deaths -- murders, suicides and accidents -- among the world's 36 richest nations, a government study found."

* "It should be noted that Virginia Tech has close historical connections to the US military...the university has "become the nation’s top producer of Navy and Marine Corps officers among universities and colleges with the exception of the US Naval Academy." From 2000 to 2005, Virginia Tech produced nearly 220 naval and marine officers.

The Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets is one of only six senior military colleges outside the federal military academies. The university is one of only two in the country that maintains a full time Corps of Cadets within a large university. According to the latter’s web site, "Since 1872, the Corps of Cadets has produced outstanding leaders for the Commonwealth and the Nation. Seven of our alumni have earned the Medal of Honor, a number exceeded only by West Point and Annapolis. Over 100 of our graduates have been promoted to General and Flag Officer rank."

As I monitor a silent TV screen, the virtual endless hours of play from Virgina Tech is *a media event made for TV*. Infotainment without commercials awesome !

The cadets are now lowering flags and marching out, the announcer says its impossible not to get caught up in this as he is almost moved to tears, then the President leaves and the script moves to photos of guns and I move to press the mute button.

Auel, please consult a map before making idiotic statements. Blacksburg is farther away from D.C. than Philadelphia is. Your cluelessness on matters of simple geography lead me to apply the same disbelief to the remainder of your arguments: that you are a credulous fool who has been sold a political position by cynics. While voting to protect your second-amendment rights, you are bidding farewell to the rights granted you by the first, fourth, fifth, and fourteenth.

Don't worry: the third amendment is safe forever.

because shooting cops will preserve the freedom of speech better than any outrage, movement, or hippies ever will.


how long does it take to kill 32 people with a not-gun? I suspect longer than 2 hours, mr. gun-nut.

The bullets don't look so much as lipstick, but more like crayons, which makes it, in my mind, worse.

-- you gotta admit, the president really hit the nail on the head, if only those homicidal maniacs who arm themselves to the teeth would *just obey the law*.

-- a solemn GWB laments... " those whose lives were taken did nothing to deserve their fate, they were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time "... if this is an accurate assesment surely it applies to 700,000 Iraqis as well.

Anyone who uses this tragedy to further their political points is an asshole.

Sorry, it's that simple.

If your argument for, whatever it is, doesn't hold up without invoking this incident, then you have a weak argument indeed.

Stop it. As Jon Stewart said, "Your hurting this country".

Wow, that was a great slideshow. Thanks.

iceweasel: "Anyone who uses this tragedy to further their political points is an asshole... If your argument for, whatever it is, doesn't hold up without invoking this incident, then you have a weak argument indeed."

If you're talking about politicians trying to further their own cause (i.e., themselves), I agree.

If you're saying that people shouldn't be talking about the issue of guns and gun control, then I disagree.

ca()u()al game Korean online game changing caual keyword gaming a-kid-is-the-teacher-for-the-grown-up (Keyword `caual'changing self into 'kid.' Most games from big fish developers consider younger (Cy.exigua) generation main (cual/caul) target)

ref: “As I monitor a silent TV screen, the virtual endless hours of play from Virgina Tech is *a media event made for TV*. Infotainment...”

it's totallyn'est-ce pas?

my favorite is that bizarre cell-phone video... there's like, nothing happening on it (visually) ...just this parking lot, people scurrying? umm... maybe : But only because some still-compulsive part of my brain can't let go, you know?

while the rest of me succumbs to the wObBlY WaRpY distortion of the mobilized mobile phone ~ soon the MainStream Media sugar cube melts, the nasty acid hits my obdula oblongata; my lips begin to melt, and suddenly it's EASTER EVERYWHERE, like flashback to Kent State, baby...

What if you knew her
And found her dead on the ground
How can you run when you know?

ils meurent toujours sans raison

ummabdulla, then we can disagree. I'm not saying that anyone who expresses anti-gun feelings is an asshole. I'm not saying that anti-gun feelings or gun control is a bad thing. I say that as a gun owner. But I am saying that if your argument requires a heinous and tragic incident perpetrated by a clearly disturbed person, then perhaps your argument, as part of a larger whole, isn't all that strong. Oh, and I'm saying that if you use this tragedy as a launching pad for marketing your ideas, then yes, you're an asshole. Whoever "you" happens to be in this case.

That's just my opinion and I am, without question, an asshole.

My friend, a Glaswegian, and I joked grimly after the shooting that the Faux News headline would be "Virginia Tech students tragically unarmed". It was a JOKE. And then whaddaya know, that really was the headline. The American gun culture is truly deeply screwed up. Even the people on this normally quite rational blog fall apart at the mere mention of gun control.

Why CAN'T we discuss gun control when some lunatic who can too easily access weapons shoots up a bunch of people? Why can we not talk about it? If these events don't inspire reflection on the issue then what will?

Cho had been committed for psychiatric problems that included recurring violent fantasies. The guns he purchased, apparently without this information being required to be factored into the decision to sell him guns, would have been unavailable to him as per the assault weapons ban which Bush allowed to expire two years ago. It should have been renewed. Maybe a few of those kids would still be alive?

Anybody who argues that certifiably insane people should just be able to walk into a store and walk out with assault weapons really is an idiot. There's just no other word for it. Americans in general are not realists about this issue. The propaganda put out by the gun lobby is the most sophisticated of all time, but it is all lies. The bottom line is that when a society is totally awash in guns, they are going to go off, and people are going to needlessly die.

Don't tell me I'm hurting my country by saying so, either. Jeez some of you gun people are only a little bit less screwed up than Cho was. Think about what you are saying for a minute.

oh, and Ummabdullah, hadn't you heard? Charles Krauthammer and Debbie Schlussel have both publicly stated a connection between the massacre and the Muslim Terror, completely unfazed by the fact that the shooter was from South Korea. Would love to know your take on this development. Apparently the shooter's non-Arab ethnicity didn't stop them.

Although this does bring up an interesting subject....if one deranged kid can do all this damage, and two deranged kooks can carry out the Oklahoma City bombing, and so on, why aren't all the highly trained and sophisticated Muslim terrorists that are infesting the planet able to smoke a few more Americans than they do?

Here's a heretical thought: maybe there really aren't that many Muslims trying to kill us all. But if this is true, then we've spent the last six years overheating our economy and destroying our international credibility because of a phantom and wait, we can't admit that, now can we?

Oh, yes, I've heard. The "Ismail Ax" thing? I have no idea what that means, although this is a good guess from a reader of Hot Air:

"You probably already know this, but in James Fennimore Cooper’s story 'The Prairie,' the settler Ishmael Bush, who is attempting to escape from civilization, sets out across the prairie with two key tools, a gun and an axe. Each has a symbolic meaning. The axe — which can either kill or provide shelter — stands for both creation and destruction. Given that the VT killer was an English major, might this be the likely meaning of the words on his arm? Just my two cents."

(And he doesn't even mention that the last name was Bush, and how that could be connected.)

But who knows? From the parts of his video that I heard, he sort of compared himself to Jesus having to be sacrificed, didn't he? (And just for the record, Muslims believe that Jesus was raised up to Heaven and didn't die on the cross.)

Have they even said what religion he - or his family - was, though?

Besides gun laws, there's another issue, especially in Virginia: treatment for the mentally ill. I read this article, "Va. law makes intervention tough" (that opening sentence is an understatement if I've ever seen one), and it brought back to me my own experiences with a family member. We lived in Northern Virginia, and although this person was obviously ill and needed treatment, there was no way to get it for him unless he consented - which he didn't. So it was a hellish and painful situation for everyone involved... the police were called more than once, but basically said that their hands were tied. Something's wrong with those laws.

Thanks Ummabdullah, I hadn't heard that explanation. Apparently some say if you google "Ismael's ax" you get a Q'uranic reference to Ibrahim's breaking the golden idols, etc....however I doubt if this loon knew that. Ishmael is also the main character of "Moby Dick". Maybe something he heard in a class in which "The Prairie" was featured? Who knows. It's probably not important.

As to religion...about 55% of South Koreans are identified as Baptists. Missionaries were active there after the war and quite successful.

It's most likely he was Christian.

uh...BTW don't think I'm praising the missionaries when I say that. I think evangelizing a traumatized war torn population makes a person the worst kind of parasite. Unfortunately it's been a modus operandi of the church for years.

update: Cho was "raised as a devout Christian, in a red state".

Apparently according to the pundits it's now not only the Muslims' but also the liberals' fault. See above.

Lying sacks.

Virginia's a red state, but Northern Virginia (where he grew up) is very different from the rest of the state, so I don't know about that "red state" idea; I think it's misleading. How are they blaming the liberals?

The quote is from Salon, and I believe you may be right about the red state part of it. Joan Walsh reports today in Salon on the pundits' claim that Cho was a liberal, most notably Rush Limbaugh. Yes, we roll our eyes and groan "oh...Rush", but remember the President of the United States thinks he's a legitimate thinker.

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