Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

A hectic weekend for your humble host, as Mrs. R had to make an emergency visit up north to see a sick relative, leaving ol’ Robbo to fly solo on the various pre-holiday preparations & festivities obligations (i.e., driving the gels hither and yon, procuring the Festivus Pole Tree, cleaning & cooking, et al.)

I’m now taking a few minutes for a nice hot kaffeh, which I also will use to offer my brief two cents on the horrid school massacre that took place in Connecticut on Friday.  (I see that it was in or near Sandy Hook.  That’s the local stomping ground of Gary the Ex-Donk, aka Tolkein Geek, who some folks may recall was one of us Llamas back in the day.  I’ve not heard from Gary in ages, and I hope that he and his family were not mixed up in things.  UPDATE: Gary posts that, yes, that was his family’s school, but that  he and his are safe.  On the other hand, they know several of the families who lost children.  Prayers, please.)

At any rate, I see where the drum is already beating long and loud for Something to be Done.   Most of that drumming predictably is aimed at tighter gun restrictions.  Call me dubious.

No, what I see here and in the last few years’ worth of massacres (isn’t it chilling that I can write that?) is the confluence of two societal poisons into a truly deadly cocktail.   The first is our public policy approach toward mental illness.  Thanks to misguided do-goodery stretching back to the Jimmah Carter era, the mentally unstable (as all these shooters seem to be) are literally untouchable by either family or civic authority unless and until they commit an actual crime and can be jailed.   This needs to be changed so that those who need treatment, whether it be medication, counseling or institutionalization, get it whether they want it or not.

The second is the nihilistic narcissism which constitutes the dominant value of the popular “culture” these days – movies, teevee, music, video games.   What with so many films involving anarchic super villains and sadistic mass murders, with so many “songs” praising hate, with so many games involving blowing everyone else and everything around one to Kingdom Come, is it really all that much of a wonder that deranged young men see themselves as Miltonic anti-heroes shouting “Non Serviam!” at the heavens and therefore free to act out  the petty frustrations of their miserable little lives on an epic scale?

Of course, I don’t expect either of these issues to be addressed in any meaningful way.  “Gun control” is far easier (and serves other nefarious purposes that I won’t go into here).  Instead, there will be ribbons and teddy bears and vigils and political opportunism for a while until the publick is distracted by the next shiny new object, just in time to be shocked all over again by a fresh outbreak of mayhem.