The United States is once again doing the parade of grief after yet another high-profile mass murder. This time though, more than a few eyebrows remain raised over the strangeness of the shooter.
In sum, here’s what we know so far.
The shooter, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock was a rather well-to-do man who lived part-time in a retirement community located in Mesquite, Nevada. He had a live-in girlfriend named Marilou Danley, a Filipina with dual citizenship to both the Philippines and Australia. Prior to Paddock’s rampage, he sent her out of the country. Many believe that he did so in order to keep her from knowing the full extent of his plans.
Other facts about this most abnormal shooter do not make things any clearer. Paddock liked to pay for his transactions in cash because he may have been obsessed with privacy. He bought one home for $369,022. He paid in greenbacks, plus he told the real estate agent that he made a significant portion of his income from gambling. He said that he made as much as $1 million a year from betting and playing cards.
Paddock was the proud owner of a pilot’s license and a successful accountant who frequently made trips to Las Vegas in order to indulge in his gambling habits. There are reports that he was moving as much as $20,000 prior to his shooting spree. It is not yet certain whether this money represented winnings or losses.
He did wire out $100,000 to the Philippines, which is not only his girlfriend’s native land but also one of the redoubts of ISIS’s power in East Asia. Although U.S. law enforcement officials have been quick to rule it out, ISIS has continued to assert that Paddock was one of their “soldiers.” The terror group has so far refrained from taken responsibility for attacks that it has had no part in. Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo spoke at a press conference this week and said that Paddock may have been “radicalized” without anyone knowing it.
As for the shooting itself, it appears that Paddock used “bump stocks” to turn his semi-automatic rifles into fully automatic ones. His shooting perch on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, coupled in with the penned-in concert venue on the Las Vegas Strip, allowed Paddock to fire for ten minutes straight on a crowd of some 22,000 people. Paddock seemed to have come equipped with a veritable arsenal of weapons, even including some homemade explosive devices.
Although Paddock did ultimately commit suicide, responding officers noted that he appeared to be ready and equipped to survive his ordeal. So far, a search of Paddock’s home and his computer has left investigators with very little answers to many questions.
The response to this shooting, the deadliest in American history, was immediate. Corporate Leftists like Hillary Clinton and Massachusetts Representative Seth Moulton pounced on the gun control angle, while publications like the New York Times and The New Republic crossed the Rubicon by suggesting complete gun confiscation. Less corporate Leftists on social media blamed all white men.
On the Right, many began questioning the mainstream media’s narrative about the shooting. For instance, how could one man smuggle in so many weapons without being noticed? It’s Las Vegas after all, and cameras are everywhere. Similarly, Paddock’s massacre comes a little over a year after ISIS-supporter Omar Mateen’s massacre at Orlando’s Pulse Nightclub, now the second deadliest shooting in American history. Is this just coincidence or evidence of something more nefarious?
Some amateur videos seem to show that EMTs were not initially allowed in because the police kept the concert lights off under the belief that all those on the ground were fatalities. Some seem to have been still alive at the time.
Jay Dyer went on Red Ice TV to suggest that the whole thing was a “false flag” operation designed to further traumatize the American public into submitting to complete Cathedral control. It has also been noted that Paddock targeted a country music festival, which, theoretically, is a bastion of Trump supporters and pro-Second Amendment types.
Rinse, wash, repeat.
The one aspect to such mass shootings that rarely gets enough attention in psychology. Real psychology, not pop psychology. An excellent resource for all those who truly want to understand this shooting is Peter Langman’s book “Why Kids Kill.” Langman studies ten cases of school shooters and breaks them down into three categories—Psychopathic, Psychotic, and Traumatized. True psychopaths are individuals who are narcissistic, sadistic, and egocentric individuals who lack any sense of empathy. Psychotics represents a much wider range of people, including those on the schizophrenic spectrum. While all of these shooters possessed unique characteristics, Langman notices that many feel a sense of inadequacy—a lack of manliness, a lack of success with women, a lack of self-worth. Where does Paddock fit into all of this?
The Vegas shooting does have the appearance of an elaborate suicide mission, almost as if this was Paddock’s last act of defiance against a world he hated. However, what if Paddock really thought he could survive? 11-year-old Andrew Golden fully expected that he and 13-year-old Mitchell Johnson were going to make a getaway after shooting four girls and a teacher at their Jonesboro, Arkansas middle school in 1998.
Could Paddock have been a psychopath? His predilection for dangerous behavior seems to indicate this to be the case. It is also worth noting that Paddock’s father was once on the FBI’s “Most Wanted” list. Most mental disorders have genetic origins.
We may never know the full truth about Stephen Paddock, and it is not the goal of this column to provide the answers. However, if Paddock’s actions can be taken to be emblematic of greater truths, it is simply this: “Men have forgotten God.” Solzhenitsyn once wrote that whenever something awful happened in Russia, people would echo the refrain “Men have forgotten God.”
There is something sick, something rotten in our society. Evil men are nothing new, but a society that produces so many of them is. The technocratic Cathedral makes its living off of human vanity, and as such, psychopaths may find the current milieu as something to their liking. The answer could lie in human degradation, a fact so common in the modern world that we hardly notice it. We’ve become beholden to our own whims—without duty, without consciousness, without God.
John Milton made his Lucifer so appealing in “Paradise Lost” because he knew that our sinfulness makes us find reflections of ourselves in Satan rather than in Jesus Christ. Stephen Paddock chose to align with Lucifer. It may not make us feel better on Earth, but in the other world, he stands and suffers among the damned.