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-   -   Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade) (http://bloggingheads.tv/forum/showthread.php?t=6825)

Starwatcher162536 06-22-2011 01:19 AM

Re: Who should Bob interview?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 213485)
I want to add Michael Crichton to that list.

He died in 2008. I would ask what you were interested in hearing him talk about but your post history makes me fearful to ask.

AemJeff 06-22-2011 01:21 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 213465)
I'd be sort of curious which specific examples you have in mind here, although I understand why you might be reluctant to say so. which insightful commenters do you think are posting less now specifically because of the tone of the forums? do you think the regurgitation of ideological talking points is only coming from one "side", so to speak? And do you think the back-patting is one sided? I agree with some of the general things you laid out, but I suspect we may disagree about specifics.

It's pretty one-sided. Not exclusive to one side, but on this site there's certainly a deep imbalance. I'm not going start naming people, but there are clearly folks here who don't understand the difference between actual facts about the world and assertions of their own personal preferences. Who can't maintain a consistent argument from one post to the next. But who aren't shy about posting obviously ignorant assertions about all sorts of topics without any evident embarrassment, or any apparent inkling regarding how stupid some of those assertions are going to appear in reasonably intelligent company (which doesn't seem to be an unreasonable characterization of this community, at least not to me.) Among the lefties here there are a few people about whom that description might seem to apply - but they tend to post only rarely. For whatever reason (and I don't think, and I'm not asserting, that there's anything intrinsic about this) in this community there seem to be a fair number of prolific posters with arguably right-wing views about whom that's obviously true.

Parallax 06-22-2011 01:26 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
A few days ago I suggested a diavlog to be organized between McArdle and Pettis. I generally like the idea of having a poll where people could vote for the diavlog they would like to see (of course there should be an editorial process for the entries that are on the ballot). So I hope both the McArdle - Pettis diavlog and the poll happens.

Who should Bob have regular diavlogs with? I think this question is best addressed if we look at specific topics:

1. US Domestic politics: Mickey Kaus already has filled that spot but if he is not in form and needs a rest we could bring in James Pinkerton and Ann Althouse.

2. Foreign Policy/Israel - Palestine: David Frum comes to mind.

3. Religion, cognitive sciences: Daniel Dennett. I was going to suggest the great Hitch but first he is sick and secondly last time he cleaned Bob's clock thoroughly so I went for the gentler guy.

rcocean 06-22-2011 01:26 AM

Re: Who should Bob interview?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 213476)
umm...

You're right. I guess if Ebert can speak through a device on CSPAN he could never do that on BHTV. Its 'unpossible'.

BHTV commentators - proving their brilliance - as usual.

graz 06-22-2011 01:33 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213489)
It's pretty one-sided. Not exclusive to one side, but on this site there's certainly a deep imbalance. I'm not going start naming people, but there are clearly folks here who don't understand the difference between actual facts about the world and assertions of the personal preferences. Who can't maintain a consistent argument from one post to the next. But who aren't shy about posting obviously ignorant assertions about all sorts of topics without any evident embarrassment, or any apparent inkling regarding how stupid some of those assertions are going to appear in reasonably intelligent company (which doesn't seem to me to be an unreasonable characterization of this community, at least not to me.) Among the lefties here, there are a few people about whom that description might seem to apply- but they tend to post only rarely. For whatever reason (and I don't think, and I'm not asserting, that there's anything intrinsic about this) in this community there seem to be a fair number of prolific posters with arguably right-wing views about whom that's obviously true.

Too many parentheses. I can't fathom whether I'm for it or against it!
But George, I'm gonna get the rabbits, right?
Signed,
Lennie

chiwhisoxx 06-22-2011 01:52 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213489)
It's pretty one-sided. Not exclusive to one side, but on this site there's certainly a deep imbalance. I'm not going start naming people, but there are clearly folks here who don't understand the difference between actual facts about the world and assertions of the personal preferences. Who can't maintain a consistent argument from one post to the next. But who aren't shy about posting obviously ignorant assertions about all sorts of topics without any evident embarrassment, or any apparent inkling regarding how stupid some of those assertions are going to appear in reasonably intelligent company (which doesn't seem to me to be an unreasonable characterization of this community, at least not to me.) Among the lefties here, there are a few people about whom that description might seem to apply- but they tend to post only rarely. For whatever reason (and I don't think, and I'm not asserting, that there's anything intrinsic about this) in this community there seem to be a fair number of prolific posters with arguably right-wing views about whom that's obviously true.

I think this sort of thing is maddening and ultimately does more harm than good if you aren't going to just name names. I realize why you wouldn't want to do it, but trying to get me to blindly agree that some nameless portion of the population posts worthless drivel that has no basis in facts isn't something I'm willing to do. I don't know which "side" does it more; I don't even know how you label sides (where does a libertarian go?). It's also worth pointing out demographics here. Thinks have certainly changed, but it's still a predominantly liberal commenting community. I remember when I first looked at these forums (I had previously only posted off the front page) and it was like some thread about Iraq and George Bush being the reincarnation of Satan. And one after another, Uncle Eb, Wonderment, BJ, yourself, others I'm not recalling, were just going "yeah!" to each other. I think there is less of that now. But what may come off to you as "playing the victim card" may feel like "besieged on all sides by unkind and often downright cruel people who infrequently offer those with whom they disagree the benefit of the doubt". But this is by way of saying, the other thing Uncle Eb mentioned (back patting) almost certainly seems worse amongst lefties here. Maybe that's because there's more of them. And maybe back patting and group mobs are less of a problem than posting fact free drivel. But, again, I don't see the point in this if you aren't going to let us know who you have in mind.

rcocean 06-22-2011 01:52 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by graz (Post 213492)
Too many parentheses. I can't fathom whether I'm for it or against it!
But George, I'm gonna get the rabbits, right?
Signed,
Lennie

What Jeff is trying to say is this: While one hand, there aren't many right-wing posters here, on the other hand, they annoy a lot of people - therefore, the truth lies in the middle, except when it doesn't.

This needs no additional clarification.

basman 06-22-2011 01:53 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
I found this exchange interminable and verging on the metaphorically incestuous.

But give it up, please:

Who's been banned?

Who's been habitually sent to what's been referred to as the "dungeon?"

At least let me get some good gossip out of the deal.

Itzik Basman

Don Zeko 06-22-2011 01:55 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 213494)
I think this sort of thing is maddening and ultimately does more harm than good if you aren't going to just name names. I realize why you wouldn't want to do it, but trying to get me to blindly agree that some nameless portion of the population posts worthless drivel that has no basis in facts isn't something I'm willing to do.

Hell, I'll name names if you think it will help. The simplest version of the problem is that we've traded conservatives like Jimm47 for conservatives like Operative and Badhatharry, and guys like yourself, Jon and Rfrobinson have stopped posting as frequently.

chiwhisoxx 06-22-2011 01:55 AM

Re: Who should Bob interview?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by rcocean (Post 213491)
You're right. I guess if he can speak through a device on CSPAN he could never do that on BHTV. Its 'unpossible'.

BHTV commentators - proving their brilliance - as usual.

yes, my lack of brilliance is evident because I don't scour c-span for interviews with roger ebert employing improbable technology to allow him to speak. I think in terms of displaying a lack of brilliance, your fucking horrible list (ann coulter, really?) goes well beyond mine.

chiwhisoxx 06-22-2011 01:57 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don Zeko (Post 213497)
Hell, I'll name names if you think it will help. The simplest version of the problem is that we've traded conservatives like Jimm47 for conservatives like Operative and Badhatharry, and guys like yourself, Jon and Rfrobinson have stopped posting as frequently.

yeah, I understand why Jeff didn't want to do it, as "calling people out" is pretty uncomfortable, at least for me. I just didn't think I would be able to agree to stuff said about nameless people. It leads to a lot of "wait, are you talking about ME?" and stuff like that.

AemJeff 06-22-2011 01:57 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by rcocean (Post 213495)
What Jeff is trying to say is this: While one hand, there aren't many right-wing posters here, on the other hand, they annoy a lot of people - therefore, the truth lies in the middle, except when it doesn't.

This needs no additional clarification.

There are a hell of a lot of right-wing posters here, and some are far more annoying than others.

AemJeff 06-22-2011 02:04 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 213500)
yeah, I understand why Jeff didn't want to do it, as "calling people out" is pretty uncomfortable, at least for me. I just didn't think I would be able to agree to stuff said about nameless people. It leads to a lot of "wait, are you talking about ME?" and stuff like that.

Mainly I think it's useless. If you name people then the conversation is very likely to become about those individuals instead of the ideas that are really the topic. I'm really not very shy about confrontation, but I do try to use it sparingly, for the most part.

badhatharry 06-22-2011 02:27 AM

Re: Who should Bob interview?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Starwatcher162536 (Post 213488)
He died in 2008. I would ask what you were interested in hearing him talk about but your post history makes me fearful to ask.

I know he died and why fearful? how silly.

badhatharry 06-22-2011 02:35 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 213500)
yeah, I understand why Jeff didn't want to do it, as "calling people out" is pretty uncomfortable, at least for me. I just didn't think I would be able to agree to stuff said about nameless people. It leads to a lot of "wait, are you talking about ME?" and stuff like that.

It really is all about you. But see, now you don't have to worry. They like you. Just remember that none of these insightful and sensitive commenters ever came to your defense when keefe was being a busy boy and making a spectacle of you. As long as you keep in line, you're golden.

sugarkang 06-22-2011 02:37 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213489)
It's pretty one-sided. Not exclusive to one side, but on this site there's certainly a deep imbalance. I'm not going start naming people, but there are clearly folks here who don't understand the difference between actual facts about the world and assertions of their own personal preferences. Who can't maintain a consistent argument from one post to the next. But who aren't shy about posting obviously ignorant assertions about all sorts of topics without any evident embarrassment, or any apparent inkling regarding how stupid some of those assertions are going to appear in reasonably intelligent company (which doesn't seem to be an unreasonable characterization of this community, at least not to me.) Among the lefties here there are a few people about whom that description might seem to apply - but they tend to post only rarely. For whatever reason (and I don't think, and I'm not asserting, that there's anything intrinsic about this) in this community there seem to be a fair number of prolific posters with arguably right-wing views about whom that's obviously true.

How many of these right wingers does it take to reach the near 30,000 posts between you and BJ alone? Just askin.

Don Zeko 06-22-2011 03:01 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 213506)
How many of these right wingers does it take to reach the near 30,000 posts between you and BJ alone? Just askin.

Since the redesign in 2007, BJK has been on the site for 53 months and written 21,692 posts in that time, for an average of about 13 a day. Jeff has been on for 52 months and written 7,063, averaging four and a half per day. Operative has been on the site for 9 months and has over 3,000 posts, for an average of over 10 a day. Badhat is less prolific, with 3432 in 23 months, meaning about 5 per day. And of course Brendan has been quiet lately, so these numbers are overstating their output relative to Badhat and Operative considerably. I don't see an imbalance here, and if there was one it has reversed itself in the past few months.

piscivorous 06-22-2011 03:06 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Given that the general populace self identifies around 2 to 1 conservative why are you so surprised that there are some conservative commentators here. Yes I know it drags you and others out of your comfortable cocoons but is it really worth whining about?

Don Zeko 06-22-2011 03:15 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by piscivorous (Post 213509)
Given that the general populace self identifies around 2 to 1 conservative why are you so surprised that there are some conservative commentators here. Yes I know it drags you and others out of your comfortable cocoons but is it really worth whining about?

http://students.cis.uab.edu/khsu/lambchop.jpg

.

Mannish Boy 06-22-2011 03:19 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
I think Dan Drezner would be a great diavlog partner for Bob. Mutual interests and good chemistry.

rfrobison 06-22-2011 03:48 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213489)
It's pretty one-sided. Not exclusive to one side, but on this site there's certainly a deep imbalance. I'm not going start naming people, but there are clearly folks here who don't understand the difference between actual facts about the world and assertions of their own personal preferences. Who can't maintain a consistent argument from one post to the next. But who aren't shy about posting obviously ignorant assertions about all sorts of topics without any evident embarrassment, or any apparent inkling regarding how stupid some of those assertions are going to appear in reasonably intelligent company (which doesn't seem to be an unreasonable characterization of this community, at least not to me.) Among the lefties here there are a few people about whom that description might seem to apply - but they tend to post only rarely. For whatever reason (and I don't think, and I'm not asserting, that there's anything intrinsic about this) in this community there seem to be a fair number of prolific posters with arguably right-wing views about whom that's obviously true.

Aw, c'mon Jeff, there's no need to beat around the bush. Just come right out and say it: "You guys on the right are, like, way dumber than we are." There. That wasn't so hard. My candor is refreshing (if I do say so myself).

Now, as an objective matter that may be true but you'd have a hard time proving it. If there is, by your lights, a lack of thoughtful commentary among us righties, it could be because all the smart ones are too busy making a mint at Goldman Sachs or someplace to bother with pontificating on the Net. Or it may be that what Henry Luce of "Time" said was true. Namely, conservatives can't write. Men (and women) of action and all that. A third possibility -- and I wouldn't discount this as righties are cunning, if not very smart -- is that the few clever ones are silently biding their time until you lefties exhaust yourselves trying to set us dolts straight. Then, just when you are at your most vulnerable, they'll move in and cut you to rhetorical ribbons!

But whatever the reason, you have a few options. You could try to scrounge up a few nondoltish conservatives or at least some middle-of-the-road types and encourage them to post. Or, you could take it in turns to have someone from your ranks play "designated righty." You know, kinda like a designated driver. Who knows, maybe we could pick up a few pointers and you'd get the intelligent discussion you so sorely lack. Or you could just sit around talking about who is cooler: Barack or Che.

If nothing else, we on the right ought to give you a chance to exercise some of that liberal compassion we've heard so much about, as you patiently show us the error of our ways...Or at least we'll give you something to laugh about at parties, political and social.

Don't mention it. We aim to please.

Florian 06-22-2011 05:07 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don Zeko (Post 213474)
In many of these threads it looks like Bob has found a desert and called it victory..

Do I detect an allusion to Tacitus? But Tacitus said of the Romans, speaking through the mouth of a barbarian chieftan, that "they make a desert (solitudinem) and call it peace.

Are we the barbarians? Is Bob a Roman general? Are we now alone in the desert?

AemJeff 06-22-2011 09:09 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by rfrobison (Post 213514)
Aw, c'mon Jeff, there's no need to beat around the bush. Just come right out and say it: "You guys on the right are, like, way dumber than we are." There. That wasn't so hard. My candor is refreshing (if I do say so myself).

Now, as an objective matter that may be true but you'd have a hard time proving it. If there is, by your lights, a lack of thoughtful commentary among us righties, it could be because all the smart ones are too busy making a mint at Goldman Sachs or someplace to bother with pontificating on the Net. Or it may be that what Henry Luce of "Time" said was true. Namely, conservatives can't write. Men (and women) of action and all that. A third possibility -- and I wouldn't discount this as righties are cunning, if not very smart -- is that the few clever ones are silently biding their time until you lefties exhaust yourselves trying to set us dolts straight. Then, just when you are at your most vulnerable, they'll move in and cut you to rhetorical ribbons!

But whatever the reason, you have a few options. You could try to scrounge up a few nondoltish conservatives or at least some middle-of-the-road types and encourage them to post. Or, you could take it in turns to have someone from your ranks play "designated righty." You know, kinda like a designated driver. Who knows, maybe we could pick up a few pointers and you'd get the intelligent discussion you so sorely lack. Or you could just sit around talking about who is cooler: Barack or Che.

If nothing else, we on the right ought to give you a chance to exercise some of that liberal compassion we've heard so much about, as you patiently show us the error of our ways...Or at least we'll give you something to laugh about at parties, political and social.

Don't mention it. We aim to please.

Rob, you're a hell of a lot smarter than this. I might have made my point a bit elliptically, but think I was pretty explicit that it wasn't a generic slam against conservatives. I have no beef with conservatives, except insofar as I simply disagree with their point of view - and generally I think it's more fun to argue with people who don't hold the same views as me. I've engaged you often enough, and respectfully enough that I'd have thought my opinion of your value here was obvious- not that I think my opinion on that (or anything else) ought to matter much in the general scheme. None of that invalidates my observations about the community here.

operative 06-22-2011 09:49 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 213494)
I think this sort of thing is maddening and ultimately does more harm than good if you aren't going to just name names. I realize why you wouldn't want to do it, but trying to get me to blindly agree that some nameless portion of the population posts worthless drivel that has no basis in facts isn't something I'm willing to do. I don't know which "side" does it more; I don't even know how you label sides (where does a libertarian go?). It's also worth pointing out demographics here. Thinks have certainly changed, but it's still a predominantly liberal commenting community. I remember when I first looked at these forums (I had previously only posted off the front page) and it was like some thread about Iraq and George Bush being the reincarnation of Satan. And one after another, Uncle Eb, Wonderment, BJ, yourself, others I'm not recalling, were just going "yeah!" to each other. I think there is less of that now. But what may come off to you as "playing the victim card" may feel like "besieged on all sides by unkind and often downright cruel people who infrequently offer those with whom they disagree the benefit of the doubt". But this is by way of saying, the other thing Uncle Eb mentioned (back patting) almost certainly seems worse amongst lefties here. Maybe that's because there's more of them. And maybe back patting and group mobs are less of a problem than posting fact free drivel. But, again, I don't see the point in this if you aren't going to let us know who you have in mind.

"Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views."

operative 06-22-2011 09:56 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213523)
Rob, you're a hell of a lot smarter than this. I might have made my point a bit elliptically, but think I was pretty explicit that it wasn't a generic slam against conservatives. I have no beef with conservatives, except insofar as I simply disagree with their point of view - and generally I think it's more fun to argue with people who don't hold the same views as me. I've engaged you often enough, and respectfully enough that I'd have thought my opinion of your value here was obvious- not that I think my opinion on that (or anything else) ought to matter much in the general scheme. None of that invalidates my observations about the community here.

I'll call this the Krugman school of self-delusion. How many people in your personal life do you know that are conservative or libertarian? As in, actually conservative or libertarian, as in, didn't vote for Barack Obama. Likely not many. A majority of the people with political leanings that I know are on the left; none are near as splenetic as TS or BJ often are. You seem to not understand that people actually disagree with leftie viewpoints when it gets down to, you know, disagreeing. Rf's compulsive friendliness likely prevented you from understanding that there is true, genuine ideological disagreement.

We who are of the conservative and libertarian view tolerate graz's immaturity, TS's bizarre, paranoid rantings (including accusations that we actually want to kill old people), BJ's vituperative huffing, and so on, and are generally, as a whole, far more civil than many lefty posters.

operative 06-22-2011 10:02 AM

Re: Who should Bob interview?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 213498)
yes, my lack of brilliance is evident because I don't scour c-span for interviews with roger ebert employing improbable technology to allow him to speak. I think in terms of displaying a lack of brilliance, your fucking horrible list (ann coulter, really?) goes well beyond mine.

Speaking of expletively horrible lists, here's one of my own (not including the already mentioned Sal Khan):

Bryan Caplan
Paul Zak
Keith Poole
Wenfang Tang
Tyler Cowen
A Latin Americanist who can discuss the recent Peru election as well as general trends in Latin America

rfrobison 06-22-2011 10:06 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213523)
Rob, you're a hell of a lot smarter than this. I might have made my point a bit elliptically, but think I was pretty explicit that it wasn't a generic slam against conservatives. I have no beef with conservatives, except insofar as I simply disagree with their point of view - and generally I think it's more fun to argue with people who don't hold the same views as me. I've engaged you often enough, and respectfully enough that I'd have thought my opinion of your value here was obvious- not that I think my opinion on that (or anything else) ought to matter much in the general scheme. None of that invalidates my observations about the community here.

Jeff, I like you too, man. My tongue was at least halfway in cheek when I wrote my initial reply. But try to put yourself in the position of the "average" conservative poster on this site. You may not have intended to be insulting, but can you see how people on the right who frequently post on this site might have taken your remarks as showing a fair amount of condescension?

Speaking strictly for myself, I wasn't particularly bothered. It's a lot easier to handle being called slow, even by association, than to be accused, again by association, of condoning the execution of innocent people, say, or racism, say, or torture, say...Which, whether you're prepared to admit it or not, people of my ideological perspective are ROUTINELY accused of on this very site.

My goal was a bit of gentle mockery, as it were, sort of like a brush-back pitch in baseball. If I beaned you in the head, metaphorically, it was inadvertent.

Regardless, you're kinda stuck with the people you've got as far as debating partners on this site. It's totally up to you to decide whether we're worth arguing with or not.

You are, as ever, one of my favorite interlocutors here and I hope I've done nothing to damage our friendly relationship. I'd still like to go for that beer someday.

Rob

AemJeff 06-22-2011 10:26 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by rfrobison (Post 213530)
Jeff, I like you too, man. My tongue was at least halfway in cheek when I wrote my initial reply. But try to put yourself in the position of the "average" conservative poster on this site. You may not have intended to be insulting, but can you see how people on the right might who frequently post on this site might have taken your remarks as showing a fair amount of condescension?

Speaking strictly for myself, I wasn't particularly bothered. It's a lot easier to handle being called slow, even by association, than to be accused, again by association, of condoning the execution of innocent people, say, or racism, say, or torture, say...Which, whether you're prepared to admit it or not, people of my ideological perspective are ROUTINELY accused of on this very site.

My goal, was a bit of gentle mockery, as it were, sort of like a brush-back pitch in baseball. If I beaned you in the head, metaphorically, it was inadvertent.

Regardless, you're kinda stuck with the people you've got as far as debating partners on this site. It's totally up to you to decide whether we're worth arguing with or not.

You are, as ever, one of my favorite interlocutors here and I hope I've done nothing to damage our friendly relationship. I'd still like to go for that beer someday.

Rob

We're good, I think. Sorry if I'm using my interactions with you to play a few bank shots - that's really not a very nice thing to do (but it's also true that I'm not always such a nice guy! :))

rfrobison 06-22-2011 10:31 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213534)
We're good, I think. Sorry if I'm using my interactions with you to play a few bank shots - that's really not a very nice thing to do (but it's also true that I'm not always such a nice guy! :))

You know it! (That we're good.) See ya' 'round.

AemJeff 06-22-2011 11:42 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don Zeko (Post 213508)
Since the redesign in 2007, BJK has been on the site for 53 months and written 21,692 posts in that time, for an average of about 13 a day. Jeff has been on for 52 months and written 7,063, averaging four and a half per day. Operative has been on the site for 9 months and has over 3,000 posts, for an average of over 10 a day. Badhat is less prolific, with 3432 in 23 months, meaning about 5 per day. And of course Brendan has been quiet lately, so these numbers are overstating their output relative to Badhat and Operative considerably. I don't see an imbalance here, and if there was one it has reversed itself in the past few months.

Besides which, posting prolifically wasn't the subject of the complaint. People should post as much as they want - just understand that when you do so you create a record on which the rest of the community can judge your output. Which is as it should be.

operative 06-22-2011 11:52 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213547)
Besides which, posting prolifically wasn't the subject of the complaint. People should post as much as they want - just understand that when you do so you create a record on which the rest of the community can judge your output. Which is as it should be.

Sadly it seems that you consider the "rest of the community" to consist of a narrow cadre of like-minded partisans.

sugarkang 06-22-2011 11:53 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by operative (Post 213527)
I'll call this the Krugman school of self-delusion. How many people in your personal life do you know that are conservative or libertarian? As in, actually conservative or libertarian, as in, didn't vote for Barack Obama. Likely not many.

This.

All of my real life friends are liberals. No choice. I live in Cali. I thank liberals for their insistence on ethnic diversity. It's now time for thought diversity.

operative 06-22-2011 11:56 AM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 213551)
This.

All of my real life friends are liberals. No choice. I live in Cali. I thank liberals for their insistence on ethnic diversity. It's now time for thought diversity.

Here's a good blog post on a somewhat-related matter:
http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/...eological.html

stephanie 06-22-2011 01:37 PM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 213523)
Rob, you're a hell of a lot smarter than this. I might have made my point a bit elliptically, but think I was pretty explicit that it wasn't a generic slam against conservatives. I have no beef with conservatives, except insofar as I simply disagree with their point of view - and generally I think it's more fun to argue with people who don't hold the same views as me. I've engaged you often enough, and respectfully enough that I'd have thought my opinion of your value here was obvious- not that I think my opinion on that (or anything else) ought to matter much in the general scheme. None of that invalidates my observations about the community here.

Rob, I'd agree with Jeff here. I wish there were more good debates between conservatives and liberals. I also wish there were more good debates between liberals -- the kind that we sometimes get between various posters and Wonderment, but too often those focus on tactics, as if there weren't real disagreements, and too often the focus is only foreign policy. I similarly wish there were real debates between more libertarian leaning folks and more traditional conservatives, but we don't get that in part because the forum is not particularly representative of the political spectrum. Also, I fear, we don't get that because there is an effort made by those on the right to focus attacks on liberals and gloss over their own disagreements, although perhaps I'm being unfair there.

In any case, I think we don't get these kinds of debates for a variety of reasons, some simply having to do with this being a forum that responds to debate between 'heads, and the matchups and toopics often aren't that imaginative. But I definitely agree with Jeff that things have gotten worse lately, and that a good bit of that has to do with the kinds of things DonZeko mentioned. I'd add to that the unending nonsense of Denville Steve and the encouragement of him by posters such as badhat -- apparently any slam on a liberal is a good slam in the minds of some, which perhaps also explains the adoration of Whatfur in the same camp. And I'd add the many, many drive by posts by numerous rightwingers who tend to be attracted by certain subjects (think carkrueger). These people may not engage, but they do take over threads so that it's not uncommon for threads to end up being rather extreme comments by such people and substance-free backpatting of their comments.

I think this is bad for the site in general, if the comments forum matters at all. However, that's Bob's call -- if some flamewars embarass him but the kinds of threads I'm talking about don't have a negative effect on what he's trying to achieve, well, great. None of my business.

On a personal level, I like good discussion about issues with people of other views, and sometimes even like to explore why we disagree and whether we might not so deeply as we think. I think you and chiwhi and JimM47 and others do this, but sadly the ability to have these kinds of debates are being drowned out by the fact that many of us are reacting to the noise and a few of you -- you in particular, sometimes chiwhi is also overly sensitive IMO -- are taking personally comments never aimed at you.

I'll further note that tons of comments of the sort that you take offense at are made about liberals, and I know I'm trying not to take them personally, so I understand better than you may be willing to admit. We all see more clearly perceived insults to ourselves, after all. But we've been through this often enough that I'd think that people like Jeff and DonZ and me and others are pretty on the record about not thinking what you sometimes interpret us to be saying, so a question or so before leaping to conclusions might be warranted.

But back to the state of the forum debates -- hell, just as I hope the Republicans run on a "let's rethink foreign involvement" plank, nominate someone like Huntsman, and eschew all the stupid faux populist appeals to the culture war and scary Muslims and "elitists" and talk about the economic ideas they have, I wish we could really spend more time debating the kinds of things you and I and Jeff and chiwhi disagree about. Half the time I don't even know what you and I or chiwhi and I disagree about, because we are talking instead about some boring topic, such as whether my view of libertarians who love Ayn Rand is sufficiently nuanced or whether people not here are more unfair to liberals or instead more unfair to conservatives. And when we get fall into that pattern, the people who want us to just have a substance free dislike of each other based on labels win. We can disagree strongly about who those people really are if you want, it's not really important that we agree.

operative 06-22-2011 01:44 PM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 213569)
Rob, I'd agree with Jeff here. I wish there were more good debates between conservatives and liberals. I also wish there were more good debates between liberals -- the kind that we sometimes get between various posters and Wonderment, but too often those focus on tactics, as if there weren't real disagreements, and too often the focus is only foreign policy. I similarly wish there were real debates between more libertarian leaning folks and more traditional conservatives, but we don't get that in part because the forum is not particularly representative of the political spectrum. Also, I fear, we don't get that because there is an effort made by those on the right to focus attacks on liberals and gloss over their own disagreements, although perhaps I'm being unfair there.

In any case, I think we don't get these kinds of debates for a variety of reasons, some simply having to do with this being a forum that responds to debate between 'heads, and the matchups and toopics often aren't that imaginative. But I definitely agree with Jeff that things have gotten worse lately, and that a good bit of that has to do with the kinds of things DonZeko mentioned. I'd add to that the unending nonsense of Denville Steve and the encouragement of him by posters such as badhat -- apparently any slam on a liberal is a good slam in the minds of some, which perhaps also explains the adoration of Whatfur in the same camp. And I'd add the many, many drive by posts by numerous rightwingers who tend to be attracted by certain subjects (think carkrueger). These people may not engage, but they do take over threads so that it's not uncommon for threads to end up being rather extreme comments by such people and substance-free backpatting of their comments.

I think this is bad for the site in general, if the comments forum matters at all. However, that's Bob's call -- if some flamewars embarass him but the kinds of threads I'm talking about don't have a negative effect on what he's trying to achieve, well, great. None of my business.

On a personal level, I like good discussion about issues with people of other views, and sometimes even like to explore why we disagree and whether we might not so deeply as we think. I think you and chiwhi and JimM47 and others do this, but sadly the ability to have these kinds of debates are being drowned out by the fact that many of us are reacting to the noise and a few of you -- you in particular, sometimes chiwhi is also overly sensitive IMO -- are taking personally comments never aimed at you.

Hell, just as I hope the Republicans run on a "let's rethink foreign involvement" plank, nominate someone like Huntsman, and eschew all the stupid faux populist appeals to the culture war and scary Muslims and "elitists" and talk about the economic ideas they have, I wish we could really spend more time debating the kinds of things you and I and Jeff and chiwhi disagree about. Half the time I don't even know what you and I or chiwhi and I disagree about, because we are talking instead about some boring topic, such as whether my view of libertarians who love Ayn Rand is sufficiently nuanced or whether people not here are more unfair to liberals or instead more unfair to conservatives. And when we get fall into that pattern, the people who want us to just have a substance free dislike of each other based on labels win. We can disagree strongly about who those people really are if you want, it's not really important that we agree.

Most people in general are interested in a few topics and not interested in others. I'm not particularly interested in all of the Middle East diavlogs so I scarcely comment in them.

(NOTE TO BOB: PLEASE, ENOUGH WITH MIDDLE EAST DIAVLOGS!)

graz 06-22-2011 01:51 PM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by operative (Post 213572)
Most people in general are interested in a few topics and not interested in others. I'm not particularly interested in all of the Middle East diavlogs so I scarcely comment in them.

(NOTE TO BOB: PLEASE, ENOUGH WITH MIDDLE EAST DIAVLOGS!)

(NOTE TO OPERATIVE: BOB DOESN'T CARE TO HEAR YOUR LAMENT)
Judgement has already been passed, the verdict stands -- operative is a net negative drain on the forum. Estonia/Singapore beckons!

sugarkang 06-22-2011 02:17 PM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by graz (Post 213573)
(NOTE TO OPERATIVE: BOB DOESN'T CARE TO HEAR YOUR LAMENT)
Judgement has already been passed, the verdict stands -- operative is a net negative drain on the forum. Estonia/Singapore beckons!

Is your name pronounced more like foie gras or weed?

sugarkang 06-22-2011 02:35 PM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 213569)
I'd add to that the unending nonsense of Denville Steve and the encouragement of him by posters such as badhat --

I dunno. If you're saying this is a bad thing, then wouldn't you have to acknowlege the myriad examples on the left camp?

Personally, I think it's entertaining when either side trolls, so I have no complaints. It's a question of finding the right balance between hilarious and asshole. I admit, it took a while to get a sense of badhat's stance on things, but I see clear differences between s/he and DenvilleSteve. It's a shame that some can't, even when they've spent far more time on the forums than I have.

uncle ebeneezer 06-22-2011 03:02 PM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Also, keep in mind that Brendan's disproportionately high post count has an additional component (in addition to him being a prolific commenter who weighs in on alot of topics.) Brendan has historically been the most tireless watchdogs for wingnut bs. If Look, Badhat, Operative etc. each write 5 fox talking points, I may refute a couple, Ocean may jump in on a few etc., but Brendan (when he's around) is usually the only one who will respond to all 15. On the flip side of the coin, Brendan will post something intelligent (imo) and he will often get swarmed with attacks from multiple wingnuts, and will happily swat at each one like mosquitos. So it's easy to see how in a brief time period Brendan can rack up 30 comments, while Look, Badhat etc. will each only have 10. This is why the never-ending cries about Brendan's post count are misguided (in addition to being pathetically obvious attempts to work the ref and keep the liberal-bias-at-BHTV fantasy alive.)

look 06-22-2011 03:12 PM

Re: Commenter Court: The End(?) (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by operative (Post 213572)
Most people in general are interested in a few topics and not interested in others. I'm not particularly interested in all of the Middle East diavlogs so I scarcely comment in them.

(NOTE TO BOB: PLEASE, ENOUGH WITH MIDDLE EAST DIAVLOGS!)

Bob is a fellow at the New America Foundation, and foreign-policywise they concentrate a lot on the ME, China, South Asia, etc. If you search the youtube uploads of their recorded conferences, there are a few on restoring relations with Cuba, some on Columbia, one of which is entitled, 'McMafia,' and three result on Venezuela, that appear to be peripheral, that is not on the country itself.

Here is the youtube search page:

http://www.youtube.com/user/NewAmericaFoundation#g/u

Looking at Bob's fellow fellows there, you will see many blogging heads:

http://www.newamerica.net/about/fellows


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