Truther Shoots Up Pentagon (Updated)

Yesterday a “well-dressed, well-educated” man armed to the teeth walked up to the Pentagon, pulled out a gun, and started shooting. Police responded by shooting him in the head, and he is now resting comfortably in a freezer in someone’s morgue. The man, John Patrick Bedell, was connected to “anti-government writings.” Unfortunately, the media didn’t get too far with their “violence+anti-government=tea partymeme before the truth came out — Bedell was a left-wing, anti-Bush 9/11 truther.

Patterico takes a look at Bedell’s online history, including his Amazon and Wikipedia profiles. William Teach at Right Wing News asks why the media seems reluctant to reveal his political motivations, especially after Joe Stack was so casually assumed to be affiliated with the Tea Party movement. Counterculture Conservative notes the media’s emphasis on Bedell as “anti-government.” Kevin Glass at Townhall and Moe lane at Red State take note of the media’s unsupported claims that Bedell was a right-wing extremist. And Zombie pens an article for Pajamas Media about the incident, and looks at why there is such a desire to associate the actions of people like Bedell and Stack with political movement instead of crazy movements.

Update:

The media are gearing up for the “he was a right-wing nutjob” narrative anyway. A commenter below attempts to tie Bedell with libertarianism, apparently implying that Bedell and I are kindred somehow because I distrust the authority of the federal government. Michelle Malkin, however, decided to do a little — what’s that thing called? Oh yeah, journalism — and checked the site http://www.electorates.us/ which reveals that Bedell was a registered Democrat. A more careful look at his Amazon profile also suggests he had an interest in economic systems other than capitalism — not exactly a far-right ideal.

It does seem a bit pointless to speculate about Bedell’s politics, unless it becomes evident that his politics has a direct bearing on his actions. He didn’t leave much of a manifesto or anything, other than his online ramblings, so I’m not too sure that this was much more than crazy. The Left, however, is so desparate to cast the Tea Party and conservatism in a negative light, that they seem eager to attempt to link any act of violence with the Right, despite all evidence to the contrary. Violent actions against the government have always been relied to much more heavily by the left than by the right, and the last three major incidents of terrorist-like violence in the past few months have been by people on the Left.

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  1. #1 by JamieN on Fri 05 Mar 2010 - 11:24

    Listen to the man himself here:

    http://www.archive.org/details/JPatrickBedellDirectionstoFreedom20061125

    Sounds like he’d agree with this statement:

    “Concerned with reducing government influence in people’s lives and fighting the paternalistic progressive aristocracy.”

    He just threw a lot of crazy and conspiracy in with his libertarian beliefs.

    • #2 by The Republican Heretic on Fri 05 Mar 2010 - 11:53

      Sounds like he’d also agree with the Bushitler signs we’ve been seeing for the past nine years. We know that he believed that 9/11 was an inside job, and that the Kennedy assassination was some kind of coup. And sure, crazy isn’t a political party, which was Zombie’s main point. But you find this kind of crazy to be much more prominent on the left than on the right. Care to compare the incidence of truthers at the left-wing anti-war protests during the Bush administration versus the Tea Party movement?

  2. #3 by JeremyWestenn on Sat 06 Mar 2010 - 19:54

    I think the issue with the recent run of anti-government violence is that the rhetoric is, as one commentator said, making a fright wing. Regardless of whether he was on the left or right I think a lot of this violence is connected to anti-government revolutionary rhetoric. /shrug

    • #4 by The Republican Heretic on Sun 07 Mar 2010 - 10:26

      And therein lies the rub. “Revolutionary” rhetoric. Revolution as a political strategy is predominantly a tool of the Left. Far-right extremists tend to manifest as separatists, not revolutionaries.

  3. #5 by JeremyAdkison on Sun 07 Mar 2010 - 12:41

    Perhaps, Heretic, except for the fact that the rhetoric were hearing now is particularly consistent in an overthrow the government, we are living under tyranny(Cause, ya know, our side lost the election), etc.

    • #6 by The Republican Heretic on Sun 07 Mar 2010 - 13:23

      I’m sorry, what rhetoric has there been from the right about overthrowing the government? Or do you still believe that Rachel Maddow, Keith Olberman, Jon Stewart, or any Democratic politician are accurate sources for what conservatives believe? The most adamant movement on the right calls for “restoring” constitutional principles, not “overthrowing” anything or starting any “revolution.” And in case you haven’t noticed, the rhetoric of “we are living under tyranny because our candidate lost, and we much foster a revolution!” was developed by the left after Bush won the presidential election in 2000. That rhetoric was so desperate and venomous that people are still convinced that Bush somehow stole that election, and for a large part that narrative fed the 9/11 truther movement. I know it’s hard as a Democrat to stop accusing conservatives of what liberals are actually doing, but I have faith that you’re smart enough to figure it out.

  1. The Blame Game « The Republican Heretic

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