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October 2, 2015 / JayMan

Guns, Atheists, Lunatics, and More

(This is also published at The Unz Review)

It’s that time again. There’s been another horrific high-profile mass shooting. And as usual, all the nonsense that typically circulates when that happens is circulating again. “We need more gun control!” “The problem is mental illness!” Or “it’s not mental illness!” “It’s racism!”

Chris Harper Mercer added another layer to the matter – the fact that he was an atheist, indeed, a literal antitheist who specifically targeted Christians adds another lay to this whole thing. Conversations about atheism and religion are sure to follow.

The key thing about this however is that I’ve written about all this stuff before. I don’t even need to add anything new, it seems, so far.

So with that said, check out my posts:

Guns & Violence, Again…

I showed that the relationship between the prevalence of guns and homicide, globally, was pretty weak:

World_map_of_civilian_gun_ownership_-_2nd_color_scheme.svgMap_of_world_by_intentional_homicide_rateHomicide rate per capita on bottom.

200 Blog Posts – Everything You Need to Know (To Start): section Guns, violence, and the Dylann Roof rampage:

Beware Armchair Psychoanalysis:

this should make clear the foolhardiness of trying to identify causal factors – especially those from life experience – that are responsible for any given individual’s behavior. How interesting would it be if Elliot Rodger had a twin brother with similar difficulties – including one or more violent episodes – but was raised in some far away place in quite different circumstances?

But none of that stops people from trying, cooking up all manner of explanations for Elliot Rodger’s killing spree, and in so to doing, executing, broadly, the post hoc, ergo propter hoc fallacy in the process.

The Atheist Narrative:

Religion comes to the religious because that’s how their brains are wired. A believer cannot think any different … Believers literally have God/Earth spirits/Buddha on the brain. To such a person, their deities are as real as the Sun in the sky (since, after all, the believer’s brain is the only brain he’s got). Religiosity is highly heritable (as are all behavioral traits)…

religious belief – or lack there of – is largely intractable. It is a futile effort to get people to give up religion en masse (or, for that matter, to get non-believers to believe). You may have some individual “successes”, largely because of changing the environmental context of people who already had the genetic potential for whatever belief you want to instill, but you’re not going to achieve broad change in the population.

However, it’s worth mentioning here that while there seems to be genetic underpinnings to religion – even the particular religion one adheres to (at least on the level of ethnic groups) – for the religious there is quite a bit of flexibility in what particular beliefs one holds. Many belief systems can fit the various “god-shaped holes” in people. Indeed, today’s atheists evolved from quite theistic earlier people. We can see that all across the developed world, where previous traditional religions have given rise to de facto and nominal atheism.

Of course, in many of these societies “atheism” is a bit of a stretch. Even in many of these nominally atheist societies, belief – or more accurately faith – is not absent. Secular religions have replaced spiritual ones. The belief in the supreme rational faculties and universal similarity of man that New Atheism (and for that matter, much of modern liberalism) is predicated on – essentially a watered-down blank-slatist view – is such an example.

(Note, don’t bother me about posting the killer’s name and face. That information is clearly relevant to what I discuss here.)

For that matter, you may want to see my posts on Peter Turchin’s work:

Dark Times Ahead?

I think Peter Turchin’s concept of cliodynamics is on to something

Turchin, who studies population dynamics at the University of Connecticut, has discovered the violent upheavals seems occur along a roughly 50 year cycle. If he is correct, and if this pattern holds, with the violence of the 1960s and ‘70s considered, it seems that we are on course for rough times around the year 2020. The current signs are not at all promising.

While we’re at it, check out M.G.’s post Those Who Can See: Reacting to Spree Killings, Progressively.

I’m just sayin’. This matter is clearly not as mysterious as the mainstream press makes it out to be. Nor are the usually proposed solutions likely to be effective (in fact, I think there is no solution). But that doesn’t stop the usual nonsense discussions from taking place. ‘Round and ’round in circles we go, where we stop, nobody knows.

In any case, here’s all you need for this discussion in one place. There are plenty of graphs and data in these posts, so, they should prove useful. 

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5 Comments

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  1. dc.sunsets / Oct 7 2015 4:17 PM

    PS: It is my view that Reality tends to set people up like suckers just before he hits them with everything he’s got. In the 1929 to 1932 decline stock averages fell over 90% and many individual stocks fell to zero and never recovered, while in the real world people fell on hardships thought to be relics of the past.

    In order for the same thing to occur today, people have to be conditioned that such is impossible. If people capitulate and reorder their lives, the decline (in stocks, in economic conditions, in household conditions) bottoms and begins the process of rebuilding. For a market, economy or household to fall 90%, 95% or even 98% (a situation I consider quite likely) people have to be conditioned by recent experience to NOT capitulate, no matter what.

    The last 20 years, which include three vertical asset manias, a willingness to trust quite literally astronomical amounts of IOU credibility, and two 50% declines that were almost immediately reversed has done exactly that; people today will not sell. They will not lose hope. Even as tent cities arise full of Meso-American invaders, even as one city after another has a full-scale riot, even as flashmobs of “teens” destroy shopping districts, even as their 401(k) retirement plan loses half, then half again, and halve again, they have been taught that “Everything Is Awesome,” and only fools panic.

    These are the necessary preconditions to the kind of calamity associated with a “correction” of the size posited here. No one knows the future, but when it all walks and quacks like a duck, I tend to expect a duck.

  2. dc.sunsets / Oct 7 2015 4:35 PM

    Last one, honest: “That said, Turchin insists that the violence is no more inevitable than an outbreak of measles. Just as an epidemic can be averted by an effective vaccine, violence can be prevented if society is prepared to learn from history — if the US government creates more jobs for graduates, say, or acts decisively to reduce inequality.”

    Turchin is truly an adherent of the Left-collectivist trope that violence is a public health phenomenon amenable to the medical model. He’s also utterly, irreparably ignorant of economics and basic logic if he thinks “government creates jobs.” It’s astonishing one can reach that level of academia and be that ignorant. Truly we are ruled by village idiots, or as Hayek noted, “in a democracy the scum rises to the top.”

    Progressivism (and, possibly Fabianism) is a version of the Gnostic Heresy; attempting to create the Kingdom of God on Earth via the judicious application of state power, which is nothing more than pure, unadulterated violence. These people really are fixated on Utopia, one new gun/cage/fine-enforced rule on top of another, until we get there. What will they do when it is proven that a certain man with a certain genome is (a la “Minority Report”) all but guaranteed to be violent? Cage him prophylactically? Sterilize him? I’d write it as a novel plot or screenplay but no one would accept it. The poor guy would be the hero…. (facepalm.)

  3. Anonymous / Oct 10 2015 10:02 AM

    Many chart linking gun death with gun ownership. I would like to see a simple chart linking murder by any means with gun ownership. I wonder what would be the relationship.

    • JayMan / Oct 10 2015 10:43 AM

      Check out the links. You’ll find many.

  4. anon / Oct 19 2015 6:38 AM

    Sam Hyde hahahaha.

    I don’t think his YT videos are very funny, but it seems that everything else about that guy is.

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