Mass shooting

In Colorado movie theater, 12 dead and at least 50 wounded.

If there’s one thing we’re good at, it’s protecting the rights of people to stockpile weapons:

(CBS/AP) AURORA, Colo. – A gas mask-wearing gunman opened fire early Friday at a suburban Denver movie theater, leaving at least 12 people dead and dozens more injured, police said.

The violent and chaotic scene erupted about 12:30 a.m. local time as the suspected gunman, identified as 24-year-old James Holmes, stood at the front of one of the Century 16 theaters at the Aurora Mall where the latest Batman movie “The Dark Knight Rises” was playing. Witnesses reported that the gunman entered the theater through an emergency exit door and threw a gas canister before opening fire.

“Then it was a blur,” Spenser Sherman told “CBS This Morning” said. “Then I heard a couple gunshots.”

“I thought it was part of the movie, like a fun little prank – that it would be over in a few seconds. It obviously wasn’t.”

She said she only saw a silhouette of the suspect, and that the gunman said nothing.

“Everybody had dropped to the floor after the first couple gunshots, and then he fired some more. And then after that, there was a pause in the gunshots. Some people say he was reloading, I don’t know. But at that point, my boyfriend was like ‘This is the time, we need to go, we need to get out of the theater right now.’ So we ran.”

Jennifer Seeger told CBS Station KCNC the suspect first fired up towards the ceiling, as if to scare people, and then started spraying the audience. He pointed the gun directly at her; she ducked. “He had a gas mask on so I couldn’t see his face,” she said. “All I smelled was gunpowder in the air, and gas was getting to me.”

UPDATE: This is pretty chilling.

UPDATE: The shooter reportedly withdrew as a student from an area medical school.

Greedy bastards

And still they whine!

WASHINGTON — The share of the nation’s wealth held by the less affluent half of American households dropped precipitously after the financial crisis, to 1.1 percent, according to new calculations by Congress’s nonpartisan research service.

By contrast, the share of total net worth held by the weathiest 1 percent of American households continued rising, hitting 34.5 percent in 2010. The top 10 percent’s share was 74.5 percent.

The bottom half’s share of wealth has declined since it reached a high of 3.6 percent in 1995. But the most dramatic drop occurred after 2007, according to the analysis of data from the Federal Reserve’s latest Survey of Consumer Finances.

Another staggering indicator of the concentration of wealth at the top in the U.S: When all household wealth is divided by the number of households, the mean household net worth in 2010 totals $498,800. But the median household net worth — the level at which half the households have more and half have less — was $77,300, meaning that the rich have so much that the average net worth in the U.S. is actually 6.5 times that of a typical American family.

The new journalism

Odd Man thinks of himself as jaded, but he obviously is naive and way out of the loop. He was shocked to read Bill Boyarsky’s piece about censorship, inspired by a New York Times story by Jeremy Peters. Boyarsky wrote:

…[Peters] revealed how politicians and their advisers “are routinely demanding that reporters allow them final editing power over any published quotations.” Such approval is now routine in the White House and President Barack Obama’s campaign headquarters in Chicago. Those interviewing Gov. Mitt Romney’s five sons must submit their quotes to the press office for approval. “And,” Peters wrote, “Romney advisors almost always require that reporters ask them for the green light on anything from a conversation that they would like to include in an article.”

He said organizations such as The New York Times, Bloomberg, The Washington Post, Vanity Fair and Reuters have agreed to these restrictions.

Submitting to such censorship is another sign of how the Internet and cable TV news have changed the business of reporting on politics, as well as other areas such as sports and business…

More here.

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