For the past three days politicians, pundits and journalists have speculated about what particular left/right politics spurred the Tucson gunman’s killing spree on Jan. 9. The cartoonist and writer of a recently published revolutionary screed, however, suggests yet another theory.
Ted Rall, author of “Anti-American Manifesto” told The Daily Caller the shooting was just the “premature ejaculation” of radical and violent forces that will eventually overthrow the current American system.
Rall said Jared Lee Loughner’s shooting spree, the suicide attack on an IRS building by a Texas pilot, the Discovery building gunman and office shootings throughout the U.S. are “symptoms of our political problem,” not acts of political violence.
“The problem is, our system is non-responsive to the citizens,” Rall told TheDC. “People sense it and that pushes people over the edge and it makes some of them snap.”
While he strongly condemned Loughner’s actions, Rall said attacking agents of the state, particularly high-level officials is “certainly within the realm of the [revolutionary] system.”
“Historically, it’s been something that people [revolutions] have done — target political officials. It happens in Iraq, in Afghanistan,” said Rall. “I’m not endorsing it at all and obviously it’s tragic, but I think that the whole discussion of conflating this with the effects of violent rhetoric is kinda crazy.”
Rall has good reason to make the distinction between violent actions and truly violent rhetoric stripped of all metaphorical meaning or subtle nuance.
Published in Nov. 2010, “Anti-American Manifesto,” is an indictment of what Rall sees as the American empire. It warns readers of the need to prepare, mobilize and actively incite the coming revolutionary change in America.
“A war is coming … The government, the corporations, and the extreme right are prepared to coalesce into the Axis of Evil,” writes Rall in the book. “Are you going to fight back? Will you do whatever it takes? Including taking up arms?”
In the book, Rall commended “the hardcore, racist, undereducated, fundamentalist, Christian, anti-civil liberties Right” for understanding and preparing for an inevitable, close-at-hand revolution that will most likely result in bloodletting and most definitely mean the defeat of a government that no longer serves its people.
In an interview after the Jan. 9 shooting, however, Rall told TheDC that the recent attack in Arizona did not reflect the message of his book because Loughner lacked a “coherent political ideology” and didn’t have “what it takes to make it happen.”
“[Loughner’s actions] are not part of any revolution. It’s not part of a right-wing revolution, it’s not part of any revolution. It’s premature ejaculation,” Rall told TheDC. “ It’s just completely something that serves no purpose, at this time.”
Videos posted online by Loughner give the impression of an individual heavily immersed in conspiratorial, anti-government ideas often espoused by 9/11 Truthers and fans of Alex Jones. Some have speculated that Loughner’s attack was the result of mental illness or even drug use. Rall said that of what the public knows about Loughner, it appears that he didn’t have the tools necessary to qualify as a revolutionary — namely, a political philosophy founded on logic or consistent principles.
“This person wasn’t involved in a political movement. This person does not have a coherent political ideology, as far as we know,” said Rall. “I mean, I wouldn’t put it past the government to lie about him. But certainly, as far as we know, he appears to be mentally ill.”
Actually, the only thing the public knows for certain about Loughner is that he was a registered independent.
On numerous occasions in his book, Rall bemoans the fact that too many people sit around talking, rather than taking immediate, revolutionary action. Interviewed by TheDC in November, Rall said there were few peaceful ways to fight the corrupt, powerful industrial complex that he sees as the United States of America.
“What it is, it’s about getting it done. If you’re going to tie one hand behind your back, you don’t stand a chance,” Rall told TheDC in 2010. “If you’re going to be nonviolent, I have two questions for you: How are you going to win? I mean, no meaningful, radical, political change has taken place solely through the use of non-violence.”
While the Rall of 2010 might have said that “part of the reason we do the revolution now — rather than wait for governmental collapse — is to avoid the loss of all infrastructure,” the Rall of 2011 is — in light of an individual actually harming a government Representative and several innocent civilians — more prudent.
“I mean, timing is everything in politics,” said Rall. “You have to bide your time and what is needed first is an understanding that there is a political life outside the Democrats and Republicans.”