I should keep a column on mass shootings in the US prepped and ready to go at any time.
I could recycle it every couple of months because, with the exception of a few details, the story is always the same. It goes as follows.
With no warning, someone shoots into a crowd gathered in a confined space, with the intention of killing as many of them as possible.
An argument will develop over whether or not this person, almost always a white male, should be described as a terrorist. Almost always, they probably shouldn't. The difference being that terrorists usually have a cause.
Gun sales will rise.
According to gun industry expert Rommel Dionisio, "This event in Las Vegas could result in increased demand near-term for firearms as people are concerned about personal safety." There's no evidence yet of this happening, but gun company shares went up.
I have yet to see the inevitable article headlined "Stephen Paddock: the warning signs everyone missed".
In 140 characters or fewer, President Trump is guaranteed to say something wildly insensitive that includes a boast about an achievement. In this case, it was a "miracle how fast the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police were able to find the demented shooter and stop him from even more killing!"
The police certainly acted bravely and as quickly as possible but Paddock fired for about 10 minutes.
Instead of concentrating on the core problem - stopping mass killings - a partisan debate will begin. Conservative commentator Bill O'Reilly, for instance, called the killings "the price of freedom", obviously one he was happy to pay with other people's lives.
Those on the pro-gun side will cite the most basic human responses - giving blood, providing shelter to the injured - as evidence America is one people united and that now is not the time to talk about gun law reform but to deal with our grief.
"When there is a tragedy like this, the first thing we should be thinking about is praying for the people who were injured and doing whatever we can to help them, to help law enforcement," said Louisiana congressman Steve Scalise.
Musicians representing every genre will tweet their hearts are breaking.
And politicians will assure everyone their "thoughts and prayers", neither any real use, will be with victims and their families. But not, alas, their courage and will to change anything.
Eerily, unconscionably, no one in a position to do anything will declare in public they will act to stop the killings.
Conspiracy theories will turn up right on time.
Paddock didn't have much of a digital footprint? That's because he was actually an FBI agent. And the Illuminati - who for a super-secret cabal are hopeless at hiding themselves - were in evidence: the shooting took place near the Luxor casino with its pyramid, a symbol of Freemasonry.
Also, Paddock shot from the 32nd floor and there are 33 levels in the Scottish rite of Freemasonry. Need I say more?
Every solution that would work can be summed up in two words that apparently inspire bowel-clenching fear in many Americans: gun control.
But, even though, according to CNN, about 90 per cent of Americans support some gun control, including background checks on all gun purchases and a ban on mentally ill people buying guns, Congress is unwilling to countenance even these apparently modest limits.
One reason given is this will be seen as the first step on a slippery slope to a ban on private gun ownership. No one could be stupid enough to believe that - could they?