I have little interest in the doings or thoughts of murders like Jared Loughner. I glean from the news that the Tucson shooter had strange ideas about grammar and currency. The primary influence on his life was the public school system and he was obsessed with mind control.
The obsession with grammar and currency is interesting in that the two most influential progressive thinkers of our era are: Noam Chomsky (a linguist dedicated to engineering social change by manipulating language) and George Soros (a hedge fund owner dedicated to engineering social change through the manipulation of currencies).
While I have no interest in Loughner, his case leads into a discussion of the differences between classical and modern thought.
Classical education was based on the Trivium. The three legs of the Trivium are Grammar, Logic and Rhetoric. Grammar is the study of the structure of language. The study of grammar is about the form of language and how accurately the language describes actions in space and time.
Logic is about the structure of ideas. The logician was interested in consistency and the soundness of a given idea.
Rhetoric, which classical thinkers held in high esteem, is the art of persuasion. Rhetoric is what we see in the world of public discourse.
People trained in the Trivium would approach life seeing grammar, logic and rhetoric as being three distinct, but important parts of communication.
The value of good grammar and good logic is that it elevates the rhetoric … rhetoric being the place where real communication takes place.
Having a set of logically sound ideas that I can communicate well helps me engage in rhetoric. Sound grammar and sound logic create the platform for rational discourse.
Modern educators blur the distinctions of the Trivium. We have actually become obsessed with engineering social change through the manipulation of grammar. For example, it has become taboo to use "he" as an impersonal singular pronoun. This manipulation of language has a profound impact on discourse. Without an impersonal singular pronoun, it is extremely difficult to describe the individual's perspective of the world.
In school, I was trained by progressive teachers to use purr words for friends and snarl words for enemies. I was taught how to use language to frame issues and how to associate friends of the revolution with positive images and enemies of the revolution with negative one.
Loughner's bizarre rants about grammar and mind control indicates that he picked up on the progressive's obsession with engineering change through the manipulation of language.
Mind control, after all, is the art of manipulating a population at a subliminal level.
In context of Loughner's rants, it is ironic that the liberal media launched into a no-holds-barred campaign to peg the shooting on Sarah Palin's use of shooting metaphors in her rhetoric.
The concerted effort to associate Sarah Palin with the Tucson shooting is precisely the type of mind control technique that is rampant in progressive circles.
The fact that the Tucson shooter wandered around campus with a video recorder ranting about grammar and mind control seems to indicate that he was more influenced by the liberal/progressive attempts to engineer society through manipulating grammar than by Sarah Palin's use of bullet points in PowerPoint presentations.
We will never find a complete cure for the emotionally disturbed. However, since the shooting has people talking about civil discourse, I find it worth mentioning that a prime difference between the classical and modern liberal approach to the world is in the role of grammar. The classical liberal, trained in the trivium, saw the grammar, logic and rhetoric as distinct legs in the process of elevating a civil society, while the modern progressive tends to hide arguments in the grammar, with hope that change will occur as a subliminal level.