February 3, 2011

Why does the left hate free speech?

Because they don't know how to talk about the substantive merits when they are challenged. Having submerged themselves in disciplining each other by denouncing any heretics in their midst, they find themselves overwhelmed and outnumbered in America, where there is vibrant debate about all sorts of things they don't know how to begin to talk about. They resort to stomping their feet and shouting "shut up"... when they aren't prissily imploring everyone to be "civil."

UPDATE: Scott Lemieux, the blogger I linked to above, has written a new post in which he might think he's responding to my challenge and providing substance rather than crude denouncement. If you can slog through his laughably poor writing — "It’s not just liberals but Althouse herself who don’t believe in the standards of free speech she criticizes 'liberals' for not practicing" — you'll see he's come up with 3 links to posts of mine which supposedly show that I don't have principled free-speech values. Follow those links and see what I actually wrote.

193 comments:

Chase said...

Wow - how correct you are!

The basic worldview of the left contains the view that deception - outright lying - is acceptable in the cause if it serves a greater purpose. It is in complete conflict with the Judeo-Christian worldview of "Thou shalt not bear false witness".

Which is why you can never - seriously - fully trust someone on the left. It is impossible to know if they have made a decision to try to always be honest. The opposing worldview - the Judeo-Christian worldview demands honesty in all things. It's followers often fail in upholding that value, but at least it exists in their worldview, as opposed to the lack of that value on the left.

dont tread 2012 said...

They only hate 'free speech' when it comes to those that oppose their leftist worldview.

Other than that, they seem to be just fine with it.

Scott M said...

Take the summit over healthcare that the President went kicking and screaming to. I remember a lot of numbers and dollars coming from the right side of the room to make their points. I remember a lot of heart-string tugging from the left side every time they tried to make theirs.
It was almost a living, breathing caricature diorama.

rdkraus said...

Did you really have the highest GPA in your class?

Pogo said...

I read the LG&M post 3 times now.

The statement "If you are not receiving million of dollars a year and a broadcast platform..." doesn't make any sense, at least, not in reference to Althouse.

And saying "...only university instructors should be fired for their political views." and linking this to Althouse is a deliberate misreading of that post.

That is, LG&M snarks with an obfuscation and a lie.

Chase said...

LG&M snarks with an obfuscation and a lie.

Dishonesty in everything is a hallmark value of the left.

Paul Zrimsek said...

So is the new consensus that the Hollywood Blacklist was OK after all? Lots of coalescence around this "We're not trying to arrest Beck, just get him fired, so we can't be censors" idea.

Chase said...

Did you really have the highest GPA in your class?

Personal attacks while avoiding the issue is a hallmark of the left.

Scott M said...

That is, LG&M snarks with an obfuscation and a lie.

You get extra credit for each use "obfuscation" before 9am, Pogo.

Chase said...

We're not trying to arrest Beck, just get him fired, so we can't be censors

Again, dishonesty is a hallmark of the left.

Rialby said...

Commenter - Ann's literacy comes out of a wine box.

Better that than a glass pipe.

TMink said...

Free speech? Their programs can't handle free speech.

Trey

Chase said...

Pogo you are right - the statement form LG&M doesn't make any sense.

Nonsenseand the inability to reason are not basic hallmark values of the left, but boy, they sure are common actions on the left.

Shanna said...

Those comments are typical. I disagree with you, therefore you are an idiot. And probably a liar too. And maybe a drunk.

Chris said...

I read the post you linked to and couldn't even make sense of it, beyond gleaning that it seemed to be a personal attack of some kind. I read it again. Free speech doesn't always mean cogent speech I guess.

Pogo said...

The LG&M comments were all (save one) a form of 'She's stoopid.', followed by 'Yeah'.

Not exactly the smackdown one expects from one's betters.

Roger J. said...

The comments of the LGM post speak for themselves. (isnt there some fancy lawyer term for that?)

Henry said...

The reductive absurdity of the anti-Althouse argument is apiece with the reductive absurdity of their anti-speech arguments.

They conflate the scholarly context with the media context. They further conflate the media with the political (Bob Wright's haphazard reference to "speech killing millions").

Today's electronic media is as close as one can get to a free market of ideas. It has evolved in that direction over the last 20 or 30 years from an information environment that was far more limited and regulated than today.

Yet this is the environment the left has targeted. Their opposition of course is protected speech. But their mindset broadcasts clearly through their noise.

There are the calls to have their media opponents fired. Notice the appeal to higher authority. There are calls for a new fairness doctrine. Notice the appeal to higher authority.

There are the demands for more civil discourse. Notice the appeal to conformism. There is the love affair with the mythical media environment of the past, a three channel oligarchy on TV, William F. Buckley on PBS once a week, and a content-free AM radio dial. Notice the appeal to conformism.

Authority and conformism. The left loves the Man.

Chase said...

We're not trying to arrest Beck, just get him fired, so we can't be censors

The biggest lie-argument used in political races and elections by the left against candidates that espouse Judeo-Christian values is "they are trying to impose their views on the rest of us".

The left only wants to impose their worldview on the rest of us. Control of your life in every area is their ultimate goal.

shoutingthomas said...

From the comments:

But she just says things that are so totally intellectually dishonest that she has to know the idiocy of her positions.

This is a constant refrain now from the left. Althouse is deliberately dishonest because...? Beck is deliberately dishonest because he's getting paid a lot.

The left has become so invested in its sanctimonious belief in its moral superiority that it has blinded itself.

Back to The Last Supper. Here's the decoded storyline:

1. Graduate students who refuse to go out into the world of work are sainted innocents. Thus, their beliefs must be beyond reproach or argument.

2. Conservatives are sell outs who've prostituted themselves in the adult world.

3. Conclusion: The Fed ought to pony up ever increasing entitlements, like student loans and grants, so that sainted innocents don't have to dirty their hands in the adult world.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Authority and conformism. The left loves the Man.

Only when they are the Man.

Famous Original Mike said...

Did you really have the highest GPA in your class?

It is truly impossible to parody the Left.

traditionalguy said...

Wow! Their first reaction to the demands of Althouse's clarity of thought is that her intelligence shows that she is a paranoid psychotic. Talk about stamping your feet and saying shut up... or they will have ways of dealing with you. These SOBs sound like dangerous little KGB wannabes.

FloridaSteve said...

Wow! That's perfect! Thanks!

shoutingthomas said...

Back to my comments.

So much of this is bound up in the "spoiled child" syndrome that now infects the left.

Reading the comments, I see this "spoiled child" argument repeatedly.

It goes something like this:

We're entitled to live in a perfect world.

Anything we don't have is being deliberately withheld from us by mean people.

Being a mean person should be prohibited.

I don't think the left really sees this issue primarily in the legalistic terms Althouse wants to argue. It's all about the entitlement of spoiled children.

Roger J. said...

Hmmm--the wine box comment can only come from trademark dave!

Tyrone Slothrop said...

Amusingly, the comments over there are almost all pure ad hominem against Professor Althouse, thus proving her point.

chr1 said...

I watched the Bloggingheads piece, and thought it was obvious that Bob didn't really have as broad of a definition of free speech as Althouse (thus, it was 'a libertarian fantasy'). He was reacting from the gut, with perhaps a news story or two, but more likely was merely seeking confirmation of his views (as if Michelle Goldberg, Bill Scher, Amanda Marcotte didn't give up the ghost).

What's truly scary about that, is that he is advocating shutting someone else up through censure and sacrificing a principle.

As Ann pointed out: Use the law, use your free speech against his, keep up your site...just don't call for censure and step on that principle.

So, as I've long suspected, in pursuit of his ideals, he overlooks his own self-interest, human nature, reasonable disagreements about consequences to his favored policy ideas (bureaucracy, less equality and less freedom as possibilities).

LarryK said...

This may be a trivial example, but I really thought my review of "The Last Supper" that Ann linked to (thanks BTW) would be engaged by the left and inspire a few rejoinders. It goes after the play pretty hard, although in what I thought was a reasoned, objective way (of course, I'm biased). So far, though, it's crickets...

I'm a big boy, I don't mind critics, although I'd prefer they be smart - hell, I might even learn something. Why is no one on the left defending the play or offering an alternative perspective? One reason could be they're not entirely comfortable in open, informed debate, where it's not plausible to caricature THEIR critics as knuckle-dragging, cyrpto-racists.

dbp said...

The left uses tactics like shaming and denouncing heretics because these are the only tools they have.

They live in their cloistered environments, surrounded by the like-minded and the mass media doesn't exactly challenge any assumptions they might harbor.

Even in right-wing havens, the mass media still exposes conservatives to the arguments of the left. The right is good at debate from practice.

MadisonMan said...

Needs an Anti-Althousiana tag.

Henry said...

Bushman wrote: Only when they are the Man.

They hate it when they aren't the Man. But they love the idea of the Man.

There is no individual freedom that can't be made even better with government coercion.

Cedarford said...

Chase - Which is why you can never - seriously - fully trust someone on the left. It is impossible to know if they have made a decision to try to always be honest. The opposing worldview - the Judeo-Christian worldview demands honesty in all things.

That is an absurd characterization. There are plenty of conservative people dishonest to the core, taking a "wide stance" on matters or lolling around a beach with their Argenitinian mistress.
Conversely, there are people from bedwetting liberals to "liberation" activist priests to Russians that believe in socialism AND the orthodox faith.

Judeo-Christian constructs allow people from all over the political spectrum to reside there with only a part of a CEO's beliefs, a progressive Jew at the NY Times - compromised by values in confict with participating in "Judeo-Christian values"

Lincolntf said...

Here's the Left (remember when Greepeace was an "environmental group" and not a collection of murderous dolts?) exercising their free speech rights. I say the more they speak, the more people should listen. We'd never know how much they hated America and Americans if they didn't keep telling us.

http://blog.eyeblast.tv/2011/02/progressive-rallyists-call-for-lynching-of-clarence-thomas/

Rick67 said...

I'd how like to know how the w*nker who wrote that little piece of puerile misrepresentation (a) obtained a PhD and (b) a college faculty position.

Like Chase I compared Lemieux's little post to your posts - no way. (Maybe one small point about Holmes and the "marketplace" quote but even that's not clear.)

doofus said...

For a long time now, I have wanted to print up and sell a t-shirt that says, "I support freedom of speech, but I wish you would shut the fuck up!"

For some strange reason, it seems particularly appropriate here.

Michael said...

Many of my long time leftie friends have brains which have atrophied. These were people who were very well read, intellectually engaging and interesting in college and graduate school. Now, I am shocked at how quickly they abandon reasoned argument for the shrug or the ad hominem. Broadly speaking I believe they have narrowed their field of vision, their interests, to such a degree that they literally do not know what is happening outside their little worlds. They are not obliged as most of us are to navigate among many different world view and many different political points of view. The result is, as they would put it, sad.

traditionalguy said...

Whatever that wine is in Althouse's Wine Box, I want to drink some too. It apparently makes one fearless of shaming from leftists.

edutcher said...

Comments here are more intelligent than at the link, but I'm surprised no one has mention who is responsible for the tactics mentioned - Uncle Saul. Without him, they'd all probably be reduced to blithering incoherence - which is almost where they are anyway.

Also, one thing not mentioned is that the Lefties love to tell themselves, each other, and everybody else how smart they are, but, as ScottM reminds us, when they get into an argument, the Conservatives, Libertarians, and/or Republicans always use facts and always end up blowing the Lefties out of the water, thus hurting their little baby feelings.

Another reason they hate free speech - they always lose.

Roger J. said...

The comments of the LGM post speak for themselves. (isnt there some fancy lawyer term for that?)

res ipsa loquitur - Latin for "it speaks for itself". More a logic term than a legal one, but one probably used often in law.

Richard Dolan said...

The left is as big a place as the right, and its boundaries -- who counts, who doesn't -- are just as fuzzy. I'd be a bit slow to draw large conclusions from a few anecdotes or examples.

gloogle said...

All the cool kids are conservatives now.

It must really make the lefties mad...

Bruce Hayden said...

I do agree with some of the above posters that one of the big differences between right and left discussions is that the former tends to be reality based, and the later emotionally based.

I think that there are two types of leftists out there, the leaders and the led. More importantly though, you have those who are opportunistic and those who are emotionally driven.

I was going to say that the leaders are, by and large, opportunistic, but as I think of it, I note that a lot of them, esp. in Congress, just aren't that bright. In the Senate, a lot of relatively mediocre minds with an awful lot of money and the guilt that goes with it. And, yes, it is much better from their point of view to assuage their guilt by spending our money, than their own.

I am not sure where I would put President Obama - in the opportunistic or the emotionally driven. He seems to fall into both categories. And, ditto his Administration - but with his White House staff falling into the cynical user category. And, yes, since taking the money from Enron to flog their stock, that is where I would put Krugman too.

The basic problem is that socialism does not work. It never has, and never can, and that is because it is based on a Utopian view of man.

Once you accept that man is a sinner, and is destined to stay that way (or, probably more accurately, is greedy, and destined to stay that way), you are on the road to fiscal conservatism. One of the reasons for that is that then you realize that there is no such thing as a philosopher king, and that the people most likely to be corrupt are those attracted to working in government, esp. at the highest levels. And, even if they aren't personally all that corrupt, without the overriding goal of making a profit, they are invariably going to be grossly inefficient.

What is scaring the left right now though is that the group of people who used to respond to the emotional rhetoric on the left are now starting to respond to it from the right. I think that this is esp. true with Palin and Beck. Both seem good at couching logical arguments in emotional terms.

Bruce Hayden said...

Also, one thing not mentioned is that the Lefties love to tell themselves, each other, and everybody else how smart they are, but, as ScottM reminds us, when they get into an argument, the Conservatives, Libertarians, and/or Republicans always use facts and always end up blowing the Lefties out of the water, thus hurting their little baby feelings.

As I mentioned above, this is because it requires an emotional attachment to be a leftist, and that is because their central tenets are not logically tied to the real world. Socialism cannot work, and will invariably lead to totalitarianism (which is why Hayek's Road to Serfdom is one of the bibles of the right). All because man in inherently greedy.

Chase said...

Dear Cedarford,

You misunderstand what I am saying.

I am not speaking spcifically about conservatives per se, but those who try to live their lives in the Worldview of Judeo-Christian values.

The publisher of the New York Times has no connection to Judeo-Christian values, no matter his ethnicity. He is a leftist, a far-left leftist actually.

Different worldview.

My statements still stand, thank you.

Alex said...

#1 - there is nothing wrong with boxed wine

#2 - the professor is a strange bird. One day she's all doe-eyed over Obama's SOTU and now she's ripping lefties a new asshole.

Go figure.

Alex said...

The left uses tactics like shaming and denouncing heretics because these are the only tools they have.

They remember their Alinsky well.

knox said...

there is vibrant debate about all sorts of things they don't know how to begin to talk about.

This phenomenon has been on display for a couple years now here in the comments. So many of the comments from the left are fixated on "Bad Guys -vs- Obama," completely ignoring all the thousands of comments that address the finer points of politics in America.

*They especially can't seem to accept the fact that so many conservatives are fed up with republicans. They still presume blind loyalty, the obvious success of the Tea Party notwithstanding.

shoutingthomas said...

#2 - the professor is a strange bird. One day she's all doe-eyed over Obama's SOTU and now she's ripping lefties a new asshole.

Not strange. Keep her motive in mind... she's ruthlessly self-interested.

If you keep that in mind, everything is easily explainable.

Why did DADT become important to her, when she had never before or since evidenced any interest in the workings of the military?

Because her son is gay! The military had to be fixed because her son's feelings were hurt.

Self-interest. Always.

Scott M said...

Self-interest. Always.

And this is inconsistent with the length and breadth of human history (and probably long before) because...?

lyssalovelyredhead said...

the professor is a strange bird. One day she's all doe-eyed over Obama's SOTU and now she's ripping lefties a new asshole.

It's almost like she thinks for herself and evaluates things on their own merits or something!

- Lyssa

shoutingthomas said...

And this is inconsistent with the length and breadth of human history (and probably long before) because...?

It's fine.

Just pointing it out.

The lawyerly version of it is particularly intense.

Roger J. said...

ST: I do not begrude the professor her self interest. In fact if you are a conservative, self interest is, I would argue, axiomatic to conservatism--Certainly Milton Friedman, Thomas Hobbes, Edmund Burke, Friedrich Hayek and many others would argue in favor of self interest--Its what makes capitalism work in the economic sphere. Of course it can also be dysfunctional as Hobbes pointed out in Leviathan. Begrudge not the professor or anyone else their self interest.

Scott M said...

I'm not sure it's axiomatic to conservatism in and of itself, but inherent in conservatism is the recognition that people are always going put their own self-interest first and to attempt to harness that fact. I'm not entirely sure it's a difference worth mentioning, but my self-interest prompted me to do so, so thppth!

Designing a government that incited bad people to do the right things was the aim of the Founders. We've got abaft far too much from that original intent.

Ankur said...

And your substantively merit-ful argument against the (embarrassingly apt) point made in that link is?

I am disappointed, because this is not what your posts usually are like. But you are essentially stomping your foot and throwing around vague assertions about "the left" instead of indulging in any kind of vibrant debate.

I don't like to throw around words like hypocrisy - but juxtaposing that post about your UW colleague with your post about free speech is liable to cause conceptual whiplash among us, your faithful readers.

However, I do commend you for your honesty/bravery in linking to a post that links to YOUR post where you blatantly contradict what you wrote a couple of posts ago. It is human to be relativistic when it comes to knotty issues. It is also human to deny that relativism. But, being transparent - as you have been above - is always a good start.

traditionalguy said...

ST...As Joseph Welch so well put it to Tail Gunner Joe, have you no decency? Your daily diatribe that Althouse is only a sneaky, greedy, selfish, female chauvinist mere human being is getting old.The art of friendship is to be a friend yourself.

Bruce Hayden said...

I do not begrude the professor her self interest. In fact if you are a conservative, self interest is, I would argue, axiomatic to conservatism--Certainly Milton Friedman, Thomas Hobbes, Edmund Burke, Friedrich Hayek and many others would argue in favor of self interest--Its what makes capitalism work in the economic sphere.

You are ignoring the other side of the argument (likely because you were going in a different direction), and that is that the reason that leftist solutions typically fail, and socialism always does, is that they are based on the assumption that self-interest either is not an overwhelming force, or can somehow be abolished.

If you start with the assumption of self-interest, you will logically end up as a capitalist and an economic conservative. It is only really by pretending that it doesn't exist, and isn't an extremely powerful driving force, can someone be an honest leftist and/or socialist.

Roger J. said...

Bruce Hayden--you are of course exactly right--"leftist" solutions fail, IMO, because they ignore human nature and assume humans are somehow perfectable (as leftists see the light). Saint Milton himself lays out the case for self interest in his wonderful tome, "Capitalism and Freedom." but he stands on the shoulders of those who have gone before. At least as nearly as I can tell Aristotles critique of Plato's Republic (in the Laws)--there really isnt much new in political philosophy IMO.

Robert Cook said...

"All the cool kids are conservatives now."

Who are some of these conservative cool kids?

Scott M said...

Who are some of these conservative cool kids?

Well...me, for one, though I don't need the "now" qualifier.

WV - "prega" spaghetti sauce by and for pregnant women.

mtrobertsattorney said...

Ann's observation no doubt explains why Obama is reluctant to meet with Paul Ryan, one on one, to discuss the budget while he has no reservations whatsoever about meeting with John McCain to discuss the subject.

Obama is wary of Ryan and intimidatd by him. He cannot match him in a substantive discussion on budget/debt issues and he knows it.

shoutingthomas said...

ST...As Joseph Welch so well put it to Tail Gunner Joe, have you no decency? Your daily diatribe that Althouse is only a sneaky, greedy, selfish, female chauvinist mere human being is getting old.The art of friendship is to be a friend yourself.

Well, I certainly didn't say anything of the sort.

Self-interested is indeed all I said.

You might notice that I'm just about the only person on this board that Althouse actually gets pissed off at and loses her temper with.

The rest she plays the teacher toying with the student routine.

That's what's called respect. Women actually like that. Women actually like a man who doesn't give a fuck about their games.

Feminists have been running over men like bulldozers for 50 years. Believe me, women like men who have the backbone to tell them to go fuck themselves and back off.

The stupid shit that feminists have forced down our throats would never have been our lunch if men in general had shown the willingness to talk back forcefully.

Althouse is a big girl. She may not like it, but she wants to know when she's stepped over the line.

And, I'm all in favor of self-interest. That's why I present my self-interest forcefully in reply.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

ShoutingT, you live in a world entirely of your own making. Althouse doesn't lose her temper with you, and she doesn't respect you (any more than she does any other commenter, at least). You've not done anything nearly as special as you seem to think.

traditionalguy said...

ST...Maybe you are right. It's just that I never had a good relationship result from telling a woman to go fuck herself. But if you swear by that method, I will try it. Maybe it works like horses...you always have to show them who has the upper hand. This will be fun. But after riding herd on a woman do you really get her love or her fear of you that you believe is your respect due to men? Hmmm.

Hoosier Daddy said...

He cannot match him in a substantive discussion on budget/debt issues and he knows it.

No big surprise there. The supposed smartest man ever to hold the office didn't even know how auto liability insurance coverage works.

Sigivald said...

they don't know how to talk about the substantive merits when they are challenged.

That is amazingly and sadly true (at least for a prominent subset), as I was forcibly reminded by a "discussion" yesterday.

The odd part is that I could have come up with a better argument in support of the position I was arguing against, than the person who held it so firmly and with such emotional attachment.

lucid said...

@Ann

I'm glad you have blogged about the free speech issue more fully. The "discussion" with Wright, where he repeatedly spoke over you to insist on his own irrelevancies, was at best an underdeveloped conversation.

Holmes's praise for the marketplace of ideas as a forge for refining out the truth of things actually strikes many lefty ears as naive or mistaken because 1) they don't think there is such a thing as truth, but only the position that is empowered by social circumstances and, 2) they therefore want to empower by any means necessary their own preferred position.

As you say, they are not interested in freedom (or in truth); they are interested in winning.

Holmes's position comes originally from the poet John Milton in his Areopagitica speech.

But Milton's position is in important ways fuller than Holmes's precisely because much of his emphasis is on the benefits of freedom itself--that the nation with greatest degree of freedom in speech will have the strongest and the best ideas.

His emphasis is less on the problematic concept of truth itself than on the strengthening and vivifying effects of freedom.

In this, he is closer to John Stuart Mill's On Liberty than he is to Holmes, and I think Mill is closer to the libertarian, anti-statist, anti-tyrannical position of the many--such as tea partiers--opposed to the left's control and domination agenda than is Holmes.

Ultimately and ironically, Milton and Mill in their emphasis on the necessity of freedom to a good life are better voices for a modern sensibility than is Holmes.

Scott M said...

The odd part is that I could have come up with a better argument in support of the position I was arguing against, than the person who held it so firmly and with such emotional attachment.

Holy crap. I was wondering if this happened to anyone else on a regular basis. I wish I had a dime...

shoutingthomas said...

Boys, I tried to be involved in Warren Farrell's "Men's Issues" groups, and it was a disaster.

Here's the reason... exactly what you're doing.

Stop getting chivalrous and running to Althouse's defense. She doesn't need it... or really, want it.

However, as a self-interested and strong woman, if you start doing that she will manipulate it to her advantage as much as possible. That's just human.

I was editor of the leading Men's Issues magazine for about six months, and I had to just throw in the towel. 70% of the men involved were so terrified of saying anything that seem remotely "mean" to women that they were effectively rendered inert.

There's nothing wrong with Althouse's relentless and effectively presented self-interest. What is lacking is men doing the same in return.

Get a backbone. Quit worrying about hurting the girl's feelings. It's not abuse. It's mutual respect.

Trooper York said...

"Who are some of these conservative cool kids?"

Me.

Trooper York said...

shouting thomas.....
You might notice that I'm just about the only person on this board that Althouse actually gets pissed off at and loses her temper with.

That's not true buddy. She has whole posts where she calls me a pussy and an asshole.

I stand second to none in pissing off the professor.

Well except for Meade of course.

But he only does that by withholding his sexual favors.

shoutingthomas said...

Hey, Trooper, I'm starting to get pissed at you, too.

Meet me outside the General Store at high noon.

Your choice of weapons.

virgil xenophon said...

Sigivald said:

"The odd part is that *I* could have come up with a better argument in support of the position I was arguing against, than the person who held it so firmly and with so much emotional attachment."

Not so odd--it happens almost every time I'm in an argument/discussion with a committed leftist..

Trooper York said...

Ok buddy. Three dozen boxes of donuts. Ten BLTS. Twelve pizzas. A gallon of Samuel Smiths Nutmeg Brown Ale. Six cuban cigars.

First one to get a heart attack wins.

virgil xenophon said...

Yikes! I see MikeM beat me to it while I was typing furiously away..

virgil xenophon said...

YIKES AGAIN, mea culpa SCOTT M!

Scott M said...

mea culpa SCOTT M!

No problem. I get residuals either way.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Ok buddy. Three dozen boxes of donuts. Ten BLTS. Twelve pizzas. A gallon of Samuel Smiths Nutmeg Brown Ale. Six cuban cigars.

First one to get a heart attack wins.


Please tell me that, as good conservative capitalists, you will be selling tickets to this event.

- Lyssa

Roger J. said...

Shouting Thomas--hope that mens magazine wasn't Stag--I used to sneak that one in the barbershop when I was 12--(sorry ST--was meant to be a jibe--some comments just write themselves; wasnt meant personal)

Trooper York said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Trooper York said...

Com'on Lyssaskinnyredhead you know you think people eating so much is like porno!

You dirty girl you

Scott M said...

Shouting Thomas--hope that mens magazine wasn't Stag

Naw..."Tah Dah" magazine. By and for gay magicians.

WV - "munpoopr" (insert lowest common denominator toilet joke here)

Shanna said...

*They especially can't seem to accept the fact that so many conservatives are fed up with republicans. They still presume blind loyalty, the obvious success of the Tea Party notwithstanding.

Indeed. Saying Obamacare=Romneycare=Conservatives are all for it ignores a lot of important information, and betrays the emphasis on politics rather than policy. A bad policy is a bad policy, whether it is put forward by republicans or democrats. Many people really do believe that and vote that way. It's not about tribe for many of us, its about effectiveness of policy.

Shanna said...

The odd part is that I could have come up with a better argument in support of the position I was arguing against, than the person who held it so firmly and with such emotional attachment.

I did debate in high school and the main thing I came away from it with is the belief that unless you are able to argue both sides of an issue, and argue well and with passion, you do not truly understand that issue. I still believe this, and I think you’ll find that more conservatives can do this than liberals.

Chip Ahoy said...

I read quite a lot about "Beck's ridiculous conspiracy theories" in posts on other sites and within comments non sequitur style to unrelated posts. But only once have I ever read specific points he's made contradicted or debunked and that was on a rather lengthy post devoted to the subject on a right-leaning blog. The author carefully dissected some rather egregious historical errors. Everything else I see is empty ad hominem along the lines of Beck should be shut down because 1) he's stupid and 2) he's dangerous. I've concluded the people making the remarks are not getting their opinion directly from Beck, they couldn't bear the trial of paying attention, much like myself. Instead they're formulating opinion, or rather receiving opinion from Jon Stewart, who if I understand correctly used to be a comedian, who I think has a Daily Show staff that does watch Beck with an eye for items that when lifted from context are the most damaging when adorned with the full irony treatment and accompanied with Stewart's comedic bemused incredulous mugging that apparently never fails when one is tirelessly easily amused or possibly stoned out of their minds. And that goes far in explaining why Beck's points are never addressed directly in those comments but rather Beck himself denounced as a nutter and Fox for having him. It's all they've got. Meanwhile Beck is amassing an audience and apparently something of a following who are becoming activated who otherwise would not be activated and who intend to peacefully hand the opposition their asses.

Trooper York said...

Scott Lemieux sounds like the name of a bad hockey player.

"Scott Lemieux was released by Vancouver Canucks after a dometic violence complaint was lodged by his partner. Dennis Potvin has released a statement asking that we not prejudge Mr. Lemieux who is leading the league in penalty minutes and herpes outbreaks."

Ankur said...

Chip Ahoy, wouldn't you agree that the burden of proof should be on the conspiracy theorist, rather than those who dismiss such theories?

Handwaving pattern matching doesn't constitute proof.

Henry said...

...wouldn't you agree that the burden of proof should be on the conspiracy theorist...

Shouldn't the burden of proof be on the person making the accusation that someone is a conspiracy theorist?

It's turtles all the way down.

Scott M said...

It's turtles all the way down.

Please explain that sentence.

traditionalguy said...

Trooper...Your Scot Lemieux quote was the funniest thing I have read in years. Bravo!

Trooper York said...

Handwaving pattern matching doesn't constitute a reason for you to be fired because of a bunch of liberal pussies who don't like what you have to say.

Well at least in America.

So far.

Maguro said...

Ankur - Have you watched the Beck videos in question before labeling him a conspiracy theorist?

Ankur said...

No - it isn't a reason to be fired. But liberals calling for him to be fired are exercising their freedom of speech just as much as he is exercising his. In the end, it is a battle between two sides expressing what they want. And if one of those sides suffer a loss of that expression-platform in that battle, so be it.

Marketplace of ideas, remember? If I, using my free speech, can convince others that glenn beck is a liar - and they believe me, then I win in the marketplace of ideas. I mean, isn't that how we are judging truth these days in this blog? whichever idea survives the test in that market?

William said...

Is it possible that Beck's high ratings are due to liberals who listen with the intent of exposing his lunacy and by conservatives who listen with the interest of defending him against unfair charges. He's not famous for being famous so much as he is famous for being controversial. People on either side can puff, and posture and pontificate about him. It's imppossible to do this about the Jersey Shore with the same high purpose. The Situation will no doubt inspire madmen to get six pack abs, but no one cares....I've watched Beck a few times to see what the fuss was all about. I just can't understand how anyone can claim he is some kind of demagogue whose fiery rhetoric inspires madmen. Whatever the merits of his arguments, he presents them in a pleasant, low keyed way. Boredom rather than rage would be the more predictable response.....I think something similar could be said about Frances Fox Piven. No one is going to follow an elderly sociology professor to the barricades and throw a riot on her behalf. The faux demagogue condemns the faux revolutionary to a faux martyrdom and receives faux ratings in return.

Ankur said...

Maguro, that is what the 911 truthers say to me when I mock them as well. "Have you seen our proofs? have you read these documents?"

To answer your question, yes I have. And MY opinion, in this marketplace of ideas, is at least half of beck's theories are baloney.

And please don't ask me to prove the validity of my opinions before you ask beck to prove the validity of his.

Trooper York said...

"No - it isn't a reason to be fired."

Good. Then we agree. And the whole reason for the boringheads and all of these posts and comments are a big bag of bullshit.

Just liberal pussies whining as usual.

Ankur said...

Its not a REASON to be fired. But if someone CAN get him fired by using THEIR freedom of speech, why wouldn't they?

This is a battle between ideas and ideals, after all, that will determine the future of the country. Not a game of chess.

When conservatives scalped those two liberal bloggers from the edwards campaign, did anyone have this same conversation on this blog? (of course, we all now know in retrospect that the conservatives did those bloggers a huge favor, but we didn't know that then)

Ankur said...

Or when Lila Rose tried to fraudulently frame planned parenthood last week but got caught - she was using HER freedom of speech to try and win HER battle.

So lets not all pretend to be above the fray, when we are all very much a part of it all.

Hoosier Daddy said...

But liberals calling for him to be fired are exercising their freedom of speech just as much as he is exercising his.

Indeed. The First Amendment clearly states that Congress shall make no law...

I enjoyed pointing this out to liberals who thought criticism of thier idiotic anti-war protests was the equivalent of censorship.

Does Beck have a viewership of any significant numbers? I mean when taken into account of the US population as a whole? Is the left making a mountain out of a mole hill?

Ankur said...

Hoosier, I think a couple of posts ago, Ann redefined freedom of speech (for the context of the ensuing conversations only) more generically rather than the strict constitutional context.

I don't need to remind you of how Sarah Palin complains her "freedoms" have been violated when people mock her for using terms like "blood libel", or how conservatives ranted on and on about freedom of speech when NPR fired Juan Williams.

Maguro said...

Well, I'm glad that you at least watched the videos before pronouncing him as nutty as a fruitcake.

But personally, I didn't see anything crazy or conspiratorial in what he said about Tides and their "Stuff" curriculum. They spent a lot of time talking about the details of the curriculum, where it departed from traditional Christian theology and where, in his opinion, it veered into left-wing indoctrination. I mean, some people may agree wholeheartedly with what Tides preaches, and that's fine, but it's hardly outrageous for someone like Beck to cast a critical eye on their agenda. That's what free speech is all about.

Why is that progressives want to keep the work that the Tides Foundation is doing from being discussed in public? Why is this some kind of taboo topic?

Trooper York said...

Well I for one did not want Mandy to get fired.

I find her very amusing.

Sort of like Dennis the Menaces girlfriend if you know what I mean.

Trooper York said...

These liberal scumbags always want someone to lose their jobs.

That's why they love to raise taxes to drive people out of business. So more people will be dependant on the government.

That's what Obamacare is all about.

The insurance stuff is just a sideshow.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I don't need to remind you of how Sarah Palin complains her "freedoms" have been violated when people mock her for using terms like "blood libel",

Actually you do have to remind me of Palin's complaints about her freedoms being violated. Reason is I believe her complaints were being accused of being an accessory to murder and not because of violations of freedom.

or how conservatives ranted on and on about freedom of speech when NPR fired Juan Williams.

I recall conservative 'rants' over the irony of a government subsidized radio station firing an employee for expressing an opinion.

Trooper York said...

Ankur baby come back to us.

The same liberal pussies who want Beck fired are the ones who got Juan Williams fired.

What point are you trying to make.

What time is it over there in the Punjab? Are you drinking already?

Shanna said...

Chip Ahoy, wouldn't you agree that the burden of proof should be on the conspiracy theorist, rather than those who dismiss such theories?

I would imagine most true conspiracies would be difficult to prove. You could only make linkages, as Beck has done. (not saying I agree with them, but if it really were a conspiracy, people would keep things close to the vest, right? So, you would have to be in the inner circle to "prove" anything, and nobody is going to be able to do that kind of infiltration).


Then again, a conspiracy theory is just that, a theory. ie, an opinion. So, you don't have to prove it.

Ankur said...

Well, if he doesn't have to prove it - but I believe he is harming the nation by bandying those 'theories' about in a bully pulpit, then I believe it is my moral obligation to use MY freedom of speech to try and bring him down.

I am not the government, so when I tell someone to shut up, I am not violating any legal definition of free speech. I am using MY right to free speech in the marketplace of ideas.

Don't you (not you specifically, but in general) do the same to Al Gore?

Ankur said...

But..to tell you the truth, what I REALLY believe is that Glenn Beck is the biggest moby of them all.

"Moby Beck" does have a ring to it..and, and, and...I don't have to prove my assertion! yay!

Scott M said...

But..to tell you the truth, what I REALLY believe is that Glenn Beck is the biggest moby of them all.

If that were true, it would be a Watchmen-level practical joke.

Maguro said...

Well, if he doesn't have to prove it - but I believe he is harming the nation by bandying those 'theories' about in a bully pulpit, then I believe it is my moral obligation to use MY freedom of speech to try and bring him down.

Prove what? What are the "theories" that you object to?

That Tides is funded by George Soros?

That Tides pushes a progressive environmentalist agenda?

What is this big Glenn Beck conspiracy theory that makes you so upset? Can you even articulate what "it" is?

Robert Cook said...

"Obamacare=Romneycare=Conservatives are all for it ignores a lot of important information, and betrays the emphasis on politics rather than policy. A bad policy is a bad policy, whether it is put forward by republicans or democrats."

Indeed. But the reason to point out that Obamacare is modeled on Romneycare is only to point out how ridiculous are those who decry "Obamacare" as a "socialist takeover" of healthcare.

Was Romneycare--whether applauded or scorned--decried as a "socialist takeover" of health care?

I do not like the policy under either name, but Obama is the farthest thing from a socialist. He's a great friend to (or minion of) Wall Street, as was our last "socialist" (sic) Prez, Mr. Clinton. I deplore Obama and did not vote for him, but one must see people or policies for their real failings and not according to one's delusions as to their nature.

Ankur said...

And Trooper..that's exactly the point. Those liberal pussies were exercising THEIR rights, not abridging anyone elses.

Also, don't confuse NPR with NPR member stations. NPR Member stations get some federal funding, but NPR itself hardly gets any.

http://www.npr.org/about/aboutnpr/publicradiofinances.html

A McDonalds franchise does not have any control over any hiring or firing decisions at McDonalds corporate. So, even if a member station does get governmental funding, that does not mean they have any control over NPR which is primarily not governmentally funded.

The company I work for has one of the largest market caps in the world. Some of its revenue is federal subsidies, grants and funding. I assure you, I would be fired if I made a generic comment about a class of people if that comment brought my company into disrepute.

Thus, it is ironical that you talk about irony when what was done at NPR is classic market capitalism. NPR has a brand. NPR has a target market. NPR has to protect that brand and target market. It is as simple as that. And the whining from conservatives about "freedom of speech" when it wasn't applicable to Juan William's firing was annoying, but it was just another salvo in the battle between ideas, and thus...that whining was as valid as the firing itself was.

Alex said...

Ankur - but why would you tell someone to shut up? What does that achieve?

Ankur said...

See, Maguro - according to the terms of this debate, I don't HAVE to! I can just handwave and match obscure patterns and even make shit up!

If people believe me, hooray! I don't even have to object to anything specific. I can just go on and on about how ridiculous beck is. Will it annoy you? Sure! But..it is what it is. Freedom of speech!

Anyway, as I said, Beck is a moby. He is the fox news version of Colbert. In fact he is better at being Colbert than Colbert himself.

Hoosier Daddy said...

And the whining from conservatives about "freedom of speech" when it wasn't applicable to Juan William's firing was annoying, but it was just another salvo in the battle between ideas, and thus...that whining was as valid as the firing itself was.

I think the irony is that liberals tend to be the loudest proponents of free speech when they feel they're being 'oppressed' yet when Williams dared voice an politically incorrect opinion he was discarded without nary a peep from the liberal side of the aisle.

Lets put it this way, Ward Churchill found a lot more liberal sympathy for his views than Juan did for his. Ponder that if you will.

Alex said...

Ankur - don't be offended when conservatives point out the irony of liberals advocating for speech codes, shutting people up, shouting them down, etc...

Hoosier Daddy said...

Was Romneycare--whether applauded or scorned--decried as a "socialist takeover" of health care?

I don't know how many people living outside Massachusetts knew about it or cared.

Alex said...

You see it's every Americans job to obsess about what's happening in another state from which they live. So if a conservative in CA didn't comment on RomneyCare that is ipso facto, proof of hypocrisy!

Ankur said...

Alex, see Hoosier's post above about freedom of speech. Hoosier, can you explain it once again?

Ankur said...

Speech codes enforced by the government? Violation of the 1st amendment.

Shouting someone down or mocking them when you disagree with them? that's a reaffirmation of the 1st amendment. If I can shout someone I disagree with down in the battle of ideas, I will. If I can shut them down without doing anything illegal, I will.

Why retreat when you can reload?

Alex said...

Ankur - shouting someone down in a public square is legal, but not democratic. I thought you liberals were all about ZOMG... DEMOCRACY RULEZ MAN!

Scott M said...

If I can shout someone I disagree with down in the battle of ideas, I will.

Poor choice of words. Shouting someone down isn't a battle of ideas, it's a battle of volume. Being willing to engage in the battle of volume doesn't help you win the battle of ideas at all.

Joe said...

(The Crypto Jew)

Was Romneycare--whether applauded or scorned--decried as a "socialist takeover" of health care?

Yes….it is busy bankrupting the Private Insurance Companies and forcing them out of MA, leaving only the Massachusetts’s State Health Care Plan as a provider…it’s the back-door approach to Single-Payer.

Maguro said...

See, Maguro - according to the terms of this debate, I don't HAVE to! I can just handwave and match obscure patterns and even make shit up!

Look, if you are going to call someone a conspiracy theorist you should at least be able to articulate the absurd conspiracy they're theorizing.

For example:

9/11 Conspiracy Theory - Theory the US government brought down the twin towers on purpose.

JFK Conspiracy Theory - Theory that Lee Harvey Oswald did not act alone to kill President Kennedy.

See how easy that is?

Now tell us about Glenn Beck's crazy conspiracy theories.

All you're doing right now is repeating "Beck is Crazy!" over and over again with no facts to back up your claim.

Time to put up or shut up, Ankur.

Ankur said...

Of course it is democratic. When we talk about "free speech", we don't specify the volume of that free speech.

No one is preventing you from shouting right back in my face.

BE UNCIVIL! CIVILITY IS A TRAP INTENDED TO SUBDUE AND CONTROL!

The new Gadsden flag should say "Don't FUCKING tread on me, you jerk. Don't you even LOOK at me that way!"


BTW, I love you all :) *mwah*

Alex said...

Ankur - yet when the tea party folks were shouting down Dems at town halls you guys were apoplectic with rage. Are you consistent on using volume as a tactic?

Ankur said...

No, Maguro. You don't get to decide how I badmouth beck.

I get to decide how to deride and mock and badmouth him. I can do it with substance, or I can do it with wishywashiness - it is my choice.

Substance takes work, and I am lazy. So..I will be wishywashy instead. Kind of like Moby Beck.

Ankur said...

Oh heck yes. Shouting at your elected leaders should be encouraged. "You guys" certainly doesn't include me.

I am very entertained when politicians are heckled. I was born in India, that's what we do there. "You lie" Wilson would never have had to apologize if it was up to me. But realize..that giving someone the guilt trip for being nasty..IS IN ITSELF a rhetorical trick towards winning the battle of ideas. So, I say to you - SHOUT! and I say to your opponents - "Get a load of that bully!"

Phil 3:14 said...

This whole discussion reminds me of BO's speech regarding "just words". From all of this discussion I would conclude:

They are "just words"

AND

their use must be well protected

AND

we SHOULD fight over them

...but civilly ;-)

Alex said...

Ankur - I don't care about India. That's not how we do it in America. We believe in letting everyone have their fair say!

Maguro said...

I get to decide how to deride and mock and badmouth him. I can do it with substance, or I can do it with wishywashiness - it is my choice.

Absolutely your choice. But why would anyone care about your mocking and badmouthing when you admit there's no substance behind it?

Ankur said...

Well, Alex, in that case how do YOU feel about tea partiers organizing to shout down elected dem congresspersons in their townhalls?

Joe said...

(The Crypto Jew)

Was I get to decide how to deride and mock and badmouth him. I can do it with substance, or I can do it with wishywashiness - it is my choice.

Substance takes work, and I am lazy. So..I will be wishywashy instead. Kind of like Moby Beck.


Only Beck isn’t lazy, what you’re saying is you want to be INEFFECTIVE Opposition. But if you want to be EFFECTIVE Opposition you might want to be able to answer folks like Maguro, otherwise unless you’re speaking to your fellow Kossacs, you will convince NO ONE. Your goal is NOT to beat me or Maguro, but to convince the people who read Althouse, but who don’t comment. Right now Maguro is feeding you your lunch and so you are failing in your task. The marketplace of ideas is not just that you have a fruit stand in the market place, but that you hawk your fruit intently and well.

Ankur said...

Nobody should care, Maguro. But clearly, some people do, looking at the responses it generates.

I admit, it is a low percentage rhetorical ploy. Most times it doesn't work. But..sometimes it does - like it worked on that nut in oakland who wanted to shoot up the tides foundation.

Is beck at fault for that? of course not. Am I going to blame him if I think that will bring him down? Of course!

Is Barack Obama responsible for the economic meltdown of 2008? of course not. But are tons of conservatives trying to paint that on him? of course!

We are not saints here, so lets not pretend to be. Since the tone of this blog has turned decidedly against civility lately, I am just following suit.

Scott M said...

Well, Alex, in that case how do YOU feel about tea partiers organizing to shout down elected dem congresspersons in their townhalls?

I dunno, Ankur. How do you feel about members of Congress hiring consultants to show them how to avoid their constituents as a result of town hall meetings of 2009 and 2010?

Henry said...

@Scott M

"It's turtles all the way down" is a reference to an argument solved with an infinite series. The world sits on the back of a turtle. But what does the turtle sit on? It's turtles all the way down.

Alex said...

Scott - you would have to agree that the climate of incivility is getting pretty high on all sides.

Ankur said...

Joe, do you really think I entertain ANY hope of changing anyone's mind?

Nope. Changing minds isn't my idea of fun.

Demonstrating your own inconsistencies by acting in a manner that you routinely accept from people on your side...is.

wv: fashaut. I kid you not.

Ankur said...

Okay..so I am confused now.

Are we FOR civility now? Does that mean I have to behave, and bring up cogent arguments? Aw shucks.

Joe said...

(The Crypto Jew)

Joe, do you really think I entertain ANY hope of changing anyone's mind?

Nope. Changing minds isn't my idea of fun.

Demonstrating your own inconsistencies by acting in a manner that you routinely accept from people on your side...is.


Then consider yourself on “Ignore” from here on…

Ankur said...

Whoa! are you saying you WANT your mind to be changed?

I'll take a step back and say - that is pretty darn amazing on the internets.

Kirk Parker said...

"Your choice of weapons."

Whoa, I was sure Troop was gonna say EE cups at 6 inches.

traditionalguy said...

Beck sounds like Rush doing an ad for a new advertiser whose product he swears by, sort of... conditionally, maybe. Beck is still trying out theoretical material about Obama to see how much he can say. But at least Beck does not go wobbly with a " well,maybe Obama means well" finish to his latest theory, and he makes some good points that really Obama needs to address. But Obama depends upon his carefully constructed alternate reality prevailing while Beck is getting a message of traditional beliefs into hearts and minds. So Bravo Beck, you semi-magnificent bastard, you are slowly winning.

Ankur said...

See - I admit that part of my dislike for beck is visceral.

I don't like what O'Reilly or Limbaugh say either..they REALLY piss me off sometimes. But I do have some amount of grudging respect for them. And both of them can be REALLY funny.

Paddy O said...

"Demonstrating your own inconsistencies by acting in a manner that you routinely accept from people on your side...is."

Now how is this different from most liberals and conservatives?

Both sides complain when the other side acts in a way they routinely accept from their own.

Which means your idea is fun is self-aware conformity to the established pattern?

Ankur said...

"The marketplace of ideas is not just that you have a fruit stand in the market place, but that you hawk your fruit intently and well." - I love that analogy, BTW.

Again, I've made no claim to being an effective marketer. What I have repeated time and again above..is I am reflecting back exactly the same behavior as I see from some conservatives...including all the way up in this post where Ann made a vague assertion about the "left" and stomped away without saying anything substantive about the very valid and frankly, embarrassing (to Ann) critique at LG&M. Most of the responses that followed were also unreasoned lashouts.

So, why ask me to follow a higher standard of conversation when you don't expect the same from your fellow conservatives?

Trust me, I tried to be reasonable and open minded when I first started posting on this blog. And I will again, soon, when I am not demonstrating the ridiculousness of asking ME for being intellectually consistent and coherent when discussing Moby Beck.

If this discussion was about Bill O'Reilly, you can count on me to work hard and come up with cogent arguments for or against whatever it is that is being discussed. But I am not going to waste that effort on a moby when I can mock him instead.

Shanna said...

I am not the government, so when I tell someone to shut up, I am not violating any legal definition of free speech.

Sure, but I don’t think using your speech to say “shut up” is in the grand tradition of “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

Saying “shut up” is fundamentally different in tone than saying “I disagree”. It doesn’t have to be illegal to be wrong.

Ankur said...

Ding ding ding. Paddy O gets it!

You, sir, nailed it. Satire is only successful if and when it can mockingly imitate reality.

Lance said...

From the comments to Lemieux's post...
A truly “free” marketplace could only be regulated by the State, because once it’s brought under the control of a private entity, it ceases to be free by definition, because it’s no longer truly open to any individual person’s right to either support or criticize its message in any direct sense.

Holy crap, can you get a better definition of brain-dead ideology than this?

Michael said...

Traditional Guy: Good observations. Plus, people voluntarily watch Beck an hour every day. Does anyone think Obama would have the same size audience day after day? Pretty funny when you think of it that way.

Alex said...

shouting "Shut Up" at top volume is Alinsky 101.

Ankur said...

Alright Shanna...I respect your view.

Now could you and Alex please tell me your opinion about tea partiers disrupting townhalls in a concerted way?

also, I get the best wvs. this time its "abusne". Amazing.

Alex said...

Michael - a big reason for Beck's loyal following is that they know he's not going to mock their religious faith like Jon Stewart or Bill Maher does on a nightly basis.

Alex said...

Ankur - I never approve of anyone disrupting town hall meetings. At the same time, will you agree that having SEIU goons at these functions is anti-democratic?

Ankur said...

Yes. It is exactly as anti-democratic as the organized, preplanned verbal lynching perpetrated by the tea partiers during those town halls.

Oh! I just used hyperbole - I am confused...is hyperbole allowed? or does that count as uncivil as well?

or is it only uncivil when a liberal uses it? I mean, that is okay too. Its all just words anyway.

Alex said...

Ankur - what about the hi-tech lynching you guys put on Clarence Thomas? Pubic hair on a coke can? All because Anita fucking Hill said so?

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Ankur said,

Is beck at fault for that? of course not. Am I going to blame him if I think that will bring him down? Of course!

In other words, Ankur -- and I say this as someone who used to respect you -- you are a lying sack of shit.

You're better than Ritmo, in that you ADMIT you're a lying sack of shit; but you're still a lying sack of shit.

Shanna said...

Again, I've made no claim to being an effective marketer.

So you aim to be ineffective? Why?

So, why ask me to follow a higher standard of conversation when you don't expect the same from your fellow conservatives?

We do expect the same from fellow conservatives, and fellow conservatives have tried to address you in good faith, and you spit back nonsense. So again, what is your point, exactly? You think you are making a point of some sort about conservatives, but they are pointedly NOT arguing in the way you are. It just makes you look bad.

Ankur said...

Alex, I have read all your posts above and I respect your consistency. And that is why I have to point out these two statements:

"Alex said...
Ankur - I never approve of anyone disrupting town hall meetings"


good! you disapprove!


" Alex said...
Ankur - yet when the tea party folks were shouting down Dems at town halls you guys were apoplectic with rage"

You disapprove of the disapproval? "apoplectic with rage" is your phrase that I doubt applied to me or any other liberal I know of. Of course, it is very easy to give "annoyed" a free upgrade to "apoplectic" when you are talking about someone on the other side of you, politically speaking.

And THAT is what brings me to a full circle in this conversation. Different people have different ways of expressing their anger, frustration, disapproval. It is silly to expect your opponents to adhere to a higher code than you expect for your own side.

Essentially, all I have been doing above..is arguing about the nature of argumentation.

Alex said...

Ankur - I don't have a side. I am myself and alone. I hold everyone to the highest standards of civility at all times. Do you want to hug my fluffy bunny toy?

Shanna said...

Now could you and Alex please tell me your opinion about tea partiers disrupting townhalls in a concerted way?

Not sure why you are lumping me in with Alex, but I would say that I personally dislike when people shout over other people and refuse them a chance to speak. In some of the townhalls, you could see “tea partiers” or whoever doing that, but some of them it was the elected official who was trying to silence their critics.

And fundamentally, I believe politicians should listen to their constituents, and when they are speaking nonsense I have no problem with someone calling them on it. I do think they should do it respectfully, during Q&A, but what happens if your elected official refuses Q&A, packs it with supporters or other things like that? You might have to be a little bit rude to get past that, maybe.

That’s completely different from telling some dude on tv to shut up because you hate that he gets to say stuff you don't like, and that somebody else might listen to him. I don’t care for Glenn Beck, so I don’t listen to him, it’s as simple as that. I don’t think the two situations are analogous.

Maguro said...

Alex, I have read all your posts above and I respect your consistency.

This is some funny shit here. Heh.

Ankur said...

"We do expect the same from fellow conservatives, and fellow conservatives have tried to address you in good faith,"

No you don't. Except Alex, Not ONE of you has condemned the organized tea party shoutdowns at townhalls. Not one of you have commented on Glenn Beck's constant claim that this is turning into a fascist country. Not one of you mocked Laura Schlessinger when she complained her "freedom of speech" had been violated. Not one of you have defended Obama when other conservatives blamed him for the economic meltdown.

I can and will name names of people here who argue with reason and consistency. traditionalguy, Trooper York, Chip Ahoy, Seven Machos, Joe, Dust Bunny Queen, Freeman Hunt, Scott M, and today - Alex. (I am sure I am missing a couple)

Do you want me to list the names of the people who argue with baseless accusations, ad hominems and vitriol? Just look at the top of this thread, you will find plenty. And yet - your condemnation is reserved for me, not them. I say - bring it on.

Ankur said...

..and Maguro. I knew I had forgotten someone relevant to this thread.

Shanna said...

I always try to argue in good faith, but if your idea of good faith is....addressing a bunch of random stuff you think should have been addressed, well then you are going to be often disappointed (I have mock Laura Schlessinger to count?).

I already posted my opinion about townhalls, and Alex...well...I'll just quote Maguro

"Alex, I have read all your posts above and I respect your consistency.

This is some funny shit here. Heh."

Alex is all over the map, generally.

Paddy O said...

"Whoa! are you saying you WANT your mind to be changed?"

I would say that's true for most of the people around here. The majority put up some good arguments and push back but applaud points well made in good faith, and are influenced in their positions. I know I have been.


Some exceptions are of course to be made, but many of these are just playing a game.

Which it sounds like what you're doing. You're using words to play a rhetorical game, which is great fun if you're a college sophomore -- Words can be played with!-- but it gets boring in real conversations. Because you're not interested in real conversations, just in playing games with words.

Meanwhile, both sides play the game and it becomes clear that for those who do, it's not about issues at all but just about sides. And that's really boring, no offense.

At least if you're going to play a game around here try and put on the guise of a talking rodent or singing meteor. That would be clever, rather than just doing what everyone else elsewhere is doing then trying to play Gotcha! when people fall into your supposedly clever traps that you have so unsophisticatedly weaved.

I suspect you have a lot more power to argue with substance, so hopefully you'll soon get over your self-delight.

Ankur said...

Oh?

Well, he has been pretty consistent since he started addressing my posts. I respect that. So have you, and Maguro. I respect that as well.

Again, I want to stress that a lot of what I said above was a statement on the nature of argumentation, not arguments themselves. Make of that what you will. Those of you who have read my posts before probably recognize that abrasive yelling isn't my style. And yet, I say, if someone wants to shout, then SHOUT. If someone wants to use rhetorical ploys to bring down their opponents, DO IT. You are within your rights to do whatever you can to further the well being of your nation and your society, as long as you don't do anything illegal. If that disagrees with my view of where the nation and society should go, so be it! I will, on my end, try to do the same thing that my abilities, conscience, character and legality will allow.

Paul Zrimsek said...

Let the record show that Ankur neither put up nor shut up.

Ankur said...

Paddy : "Meanwhile, both sides play the game and it becomes clear that for those who do, it's not about issues at all but just about sides. And that's really boring, no offense"

Yes. It does get boring. In light of that, and the light nudging from Paul Zrimsek above, I will finally put up.

Here is a selection of specific beck conspiracy theories that convince me that he is either a loony or a moby. You can google the phrases for more details:

1) caliphate

2) fema concentration camp

3) America turning fascist

4) His accusing snopes.com of being funded by George Soros.

5) His accusing factcheck.org of being a liberal conspiracy funded by the annenberg foundation (Yes, the same annenberg who was appointed by reagan)

want more?

Paul Brinkley said...

As someone who's read this blog and its comments for years, I find it hard to put Alex on the inconsistency-consistency map so far. Haven't tracked him enough.

Ankur - I think you're doing fine. Your style sounds a lot like mine when I was a college freshman - I had a lot of energy and optimism back then. That probably won't last forever. Before long, you'll be crabby. And then that will pass. And then you'll sound like Hoosier Daddy.

You're not gonna get far imploring everyone to put down all the dingbats on their own side. I know you'd like to - I like it when American liberals publicly criticize their own moonbats - but there simply isn't enough time in the day.

You're also not going to memorize all of the little nuances in the politics of everyone here. Freeman and DBQ don't agree on everything. Synova and Lincoln don't agree on everything. Drill Sgt and Hoosier don't agree on everything. Some crackpot will do something stupid, and one conservative will defend it, and you'd like to assume that all conservatives will defend it too, then, but they won't, and they won't even say whether they do or not, because see above.

Not that means there's no point to commenting. Commenting indicates what people give enough of a damn about to make noise. Take me for example. I care enough about meta-argumentative twaddle. Sometimes I think I'd make a good philosopher king.

On that note: I wonder how many commenters here care about what they sound like to newcomers. Which is not to say that you should (it's your choice); I'm just wondering how many people actually worry about it.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Well, Alex, in that case how do YOU feel about tea partiers organizing to shout down elected dem congresspersons in their townhalls?

Organizing is bad? Someone should tell the SEIU.

I think it was wonderful that these congresspeople were being shouted at. That's a pretty classic display of voter participation. When they were being fed a line of bullshit from thier elected representative, the voters made thier voices heard, at the townhall and at the ballot box.

Or is 'organizing' only acceptable for liberal causes?

Ankur said...

video links for the first three. I will see if I can find links for the others as well.

1)http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3mXMtLmhQ74

2)http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izjfdfDHjWQ

3) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Oro-2RYkGc

Ankur said...

Okay, Hoosier. Thank you for coming out and saying you're okay with shouting in political discourse.

I wish Ann would post a poll - Shouting: Yay or Nay?

Hoosier Daddy said...

Okay, Hoosier. Thank you for coming out and saying you're okay with shouting in political discourse.

You're welcome.

Maybe the whole representative democracy thing is new to you, I don't know. But when elected representatives are being told by their constituency that they don't like a certain piece of legislation and the elected representative says they're going to do it anyway, yes, they will get shouted at.

Hell, ever watch a clip of British parliament when some controversial tidbit is being discussed?

I've been to town council meetings that would make you faint.

Ime said...

Have a listen to these "progressives"
What should we do with Clarence Thomas after he is impeached?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E3ctO7fdrcc&feature=player_embedded

Back to the fields !!!???

Ankur said...

Hoosier, I don't think you've read most of my posts in this thread.

Alex said...

Someone, please hold me!

Trooper York said...

"On that note: I wonder how many commenters here care about what they sound like to newcomers. Which is not to say that you should (it's your choice); I'm just wondering how many people actually worry about it."

I am very worried about it. But most people recognize an asshole when they see one so I am sure they will figure it out right away.

Trooper York said...

By the way. Indian food smells like an senile cat has eaten some of that Jamie Lee Curtis yogurt that makes you shit and has dropped a load all over the plate.

I think they call vindaloo or something like that there.

Just sayn'

Hoosier Daddy said...

Hoosier, I don't think you've read most of my posts in this thread.

No I didn't. I commented on one or two in particular.

Trooper York said...

Scott M said...
It's turtles all the way down.

Please explain that sentence."

He means that it is Turtle Time!

Paul Brinkley said...

"I am very worried about it. But most people recognize an asshole when they see one so I am sure they will figure it out right away."

Ha. Well, better a self-aware asshole than an asshole who doesn't realize it, I say. CF: LGM.

wv: uppepyre - Harvard book-burning, I guess

Maguro said...

The great thing about Alex is that he can troll both sides of an issue in the same thread. Not too many commenters can pull that off.

Trooper York said...

True. Alex is ambidextrous or bi or something.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Trooper York said...

He has a great future as a Batman villian or a character on a future Star Trek episode or something.

Trooper York said...

Hey by the way....hdhouse just told me on my blog that he is big time friends with Geoge Takei. That explains a lot.

Don't ya think?

Trooper York said...

I mean he knew the Star Trek people and he wants to hang with Sulu instead of Nichele Nichols or Yeoman Rand or one of the those green chicks. What's up with that?

I mean I know George is a big time liberal and all but seriously?

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Now ya done it, Trooper: dissing Indian food and George Takei in the same thread!

Although actually, now that I think of it, there is a connection. If you're not into Indian food, that leaves more for me; and if George Takei's not into women, that leaves more for me!

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Although I won't dispute you on the subject of Nichelle Nichols. I was way too young to notice at the time; but when I watch those old episodes today, my word she was hot! Zoe Saldana's got nothin' on here!

Kirk Parker said...

Ankur,

There's a world of difference between (a) citizens at a town hall shouting down other citizens who are there trying to make their point to their elected representative, and (b) citizens at a town hall pushing back against their elected representative trying to control the flow and content of the discourse. So which of these do you claim was happening?

If it's (a), and it's not clearly restricted to someone trying to move on a monopolizer after he's had his say, then yes it's deplorable and I do so.

If it's (b), then no--not only is it OK, it's something I'm greatly in favor of. It's the citizens in this country who are the sovereigns, not the elected officials, and if they latter won't hear peoples' grievances then indeed they deserve to be shouted at and shouted down until they start listening.

Trooper York said...

"Martin L. Shoemaker said...
Now ya done it, Trooper: dissing Indian food and George Takei in the same thread!

Although actually, now that I think of it, there is a connection"


Pretty much. If you are into either there is a pretty good chance your asshole is gonna end up buring.

Just sayn'

Michael Ryan said...

I couldn't help it. Shut up? Come see the violence inherent in the system.

pst314 said...

"Well, Alex, in that case how do YOU feel about tea partiers organizing to shout down elected dem congresspersons in their townhalls?"

Liar. They weren't shouting them down, preventing them from speaking. They were shouting back when the Dem slimeballs refused to give honest answers to important questions.

Liberals like you, on the other hand, enthusiastically approve of sending gangs to disrupt speeches so that people you disagree with cannot express their opinions.

I guess you just love thuggery as long as you can get away with it, comrade.

EnigmatiCore said...

Late to this party, but here goes...

"Stop getting chivalrous and running to Althouse's defense. She doesn't need it... or really, want it."

This is my impression as well.

But chivalry is not all about self-sacrifice. Chivalrous behavior makes me feel good about myself. It may not endear me to Althouse, but then that is not my goal.

Chivalry is not about seducing women, in either the sexual or non-sexual connotations.