I don’t think having a masters degree in social work gives me an edge in deducing that even though Jared Laughner is unbalanced, the hate that is spewed on talk radio does indeed affect mentally impaired individuals. Please read Paul Krugman’s column for a reasoned explanation.
Where’s that toxic rhetoric coming from? Let’s not make a false pretense of balance: it’s coming, overwhelmingly, from the right. It’s hard to imagine a Democratic member of Congress urging constituents to be “armed and dangerous” without being ostracized; but Representative Michele Bachmann, who did just that, is a rising star in the G.O.P.