Monday, March 16, 2009

Poking the beast between the bars ...

... generally causes it to flail around and try to claw its tormentors, which seems to be the case with our friends at Delawareliberal.

Today, in a post that chides me for using hyperbole with regarding to the story about the Missouri Information Analysis Center's Strategic Report on the Modern Militia Movement, cassandra deftly manages to conflate what I said with the source I quoted....

Imagine, the folks at DL objecting to hyperbole. I should have stuck with legitimate language, like suggesting that American citizens be rounded up, arrested, and tried for treason and sedition because they're being duped by a radio commentator.

Then there's the post in which donviti--the moral compass of the group who couldn't find magnetic north with a paperclip shoved you-know-where--engages in his favorite hobby: labeling anybody he happens to disagree with.

A few months back: Dave Burris was a fat-ass piece of garbage [wait! That one may have been jason]. But Dominique as a racist was all dv. Now liz allen is an anti-semite. Dare we forget that most priests live only to fondle little boys and pretty much anybody who goes to church condones torture? [I'd put in the fact that all non-Democrats hate America and have no compassion, but that's from jason and Delawaredem, not dv.]

I'll keep this short, because I know the attention span there is pretty limited: when you no longer actually discuss issues of policy or substance, it obviously helps keep up traffic to call people names, stereotype large groups of Americans, and then recoil in pious wounded indignation when pretty much everybody with any sense steps back with horrified looks on their faces.

I recognize that the majority of the people posting there do not believe that civility in political discourse is a virtue, but I never realized just how easily several really bright, well-informed people could slip across the line into Jerry Springer-land without ever noticing.


Anonymous said...


You pretty much lost your argument entirely when you linked to "Down With Absolutes" as "everybody with any sense" unless you think that bigoted hate speech, vapid and dishonest political commentary, and internet identity theft are representative of "sense."

Mike Matthews complaining about another blog writing about the clearly anti-semetic statements of one of "Liz" while publishing "gays are evil" hate speech on his blog is just typical of his hypocrisy. Both deserve condemnation.

I don't know if you follow Bill O'Reilly's constant complaining about Daily kos and Media Matters, but you're beginning to sound like him relative Delaware Liberal.

If you're going to criticize DL, fine. Thoughtful criticism is a good thing. Bring your best stuff, cause you're good. But one doesn't need to look too far in Delaware Libertarian to find "really bright, well-informed people" who often slip "across the line into Jerry Springer-land."

And I am not speaking of just the commenters.


Hube said...

Spot on post, as usual Steve. Liz is a full-time nut, but for donviti to be calling her out?? For anyone to be calling her out over there ('cepting perhaps Lib Geek) is just hilarity at its finest.

I honestly don't know if Liz is anti-Semitic, but when one starts using phrases like "Jewish bankers" and brings up that Ben Bernake is an "orthodox Jew," that strongly points in that direction. Besides, I've caught her more than enough times vascillating between the terms "Zionist" and "Jew" to really wonder. (She did it in the post in question at DL, too.)

She's defended Louis Farrakhan ad nauseum, even saying he's never said anything anti-Semitic. She's continually cherry-picked bits of mid-east history to demonize Israel only. And on and on.

Interestingly, too, I see DWA has defended Liz (I can't read the entire post due to work blockage) stating that "anyone who knows Liz knows she's not an anti-Semite," yet they recently blasted WGMD radio host Bill Colley as a bigot for writing a blog post wondering why there were no blacks at a local Republican meeting.

I wonder if Mike would buy into someone writing a comment on that post defending Colley because the person "knows him."

Steve Newton said...

There's a really big difference between what happens here and what happens at Delawareliberal.

Very simply this: Tyler and I both sign our names to what we produce.

You may or may not agree with his strong distaste for Barack Obama, or his appreciation for Ron Paul, but he stands up and takes the credit or the blame for what he says, and when he runs for public office he is accountable for that.

You are entitled to your opinions, but I count Mike Matthews as a man with a great deal of sense, and--again--he blogs as himself and takes responsibility for what he says.

You jibe about O'Reilly and the kos is instructive of the way you think about these matters: of course, what's in the kos and what's in DL accord with your ideological perspective, and therefore criticism of them is pretty much to be disdained.

Here's the difference: this is not the whole United States, this is Delaware. And the folks at DL have accorded themselves the power to attack--by real names--people in Delaware.

I don't agree with more than about 10% of what liz writes. I think some of it is just plain nutty, even offensive.

I find it fascinating, however, that liz's alleged anti-semitism is cause of donviti--Mr "the Catholic church consists almost entirely of priests fondling young boys" and "people who go to church love torture"--being elevated into the putative position of blogosphere conscience is ... pretty much just as offensive as the person he's complaining about.

So when DL grows up, gets beyond the infantile "Mike Castle's betrayal of Delaware" and actually engages in some serious policy debates, let me know.

Anonymous said...

Hi Steve,

I never wrote that criticism of DL or any blog is to be "disdained." In fact, I wrote the exact opposite: "Thoughtful criticism is a good thing. Bring your best stuff, cause you're good."

Where is the "disdain" there?

In regards to your belief that you "count Mike Matthews as a man with a great deal of sense," you wouldn't know it by the imbecility of the writers on his blog or by his total lack of any moral compass. ("I don't care what people write as long as it gets people talking.")

To criticize any blog for attacking people by name because "this is not the whole United States, this is Delaware" when attacks on local politicians are a staple here is somewhat absurd. Why shouldn't racist, homophobic, anti-Semitic speech be pointed out for what it is? As it is certainly your right to do the same for donviti, if that is what you think.

Your we "sign our names to what we produce" argument isn't a "big difference" or even relevant to this discussion. I am simply pointing out that holding "DWA" and its writers up as an example of some kind of shining example of serious good "sense" blogging compared to DL is laughably ridiculous. And to criticize DL for slipping "across the line into Jerry Springer-land" while you guys sometimes do the same, anonymously or not, is more than a bit pretentious.

Oh, and when Down With Absolutes, your bastion of good sense, engages in some serious policy debates, let me know.


Steve Newton said...

Face it: you objected to my citing Mike Matthews because of the games he allowed with your moniker.

Interesting double standard: I should criticize DL when I think they are over the line, but if I do, I'm obssessing like O'Reilly.

As for the name thing, it's this simple: for policy comments or arguments, I do not have a problem with anonymity. I don't even have a problem with attacking the comments someone makes as being racist or anti-semitic.

But when an anonymous poster (who got his own panties twisted in a bunch when somebody outed him) publishes a post about a named local individual that says, "So and so is a racist!" or "So and so is an anti-Semite," there's a word for that.


Anonymous said...

Steve wrote:

Face it: you objected to my citing Mike Matthews because of the games he allowed with your moniker.

Face it: you couldn't be more wrong about that. My criticisms of Matthews and DWA go back WAY before that happened. The reason that he was "trying to teach me a lesson" is because he hated my "anonymous" criticisms of his blog. Check the record.

I never said that you were "obsessing like O'Reilly," I just thought you were beginning to sound like him. Just my opinion.

I am not here to argue about the appropriateness or not of donviti's post. You're free to call it whatever you want. My criticism of your criticism is in regards to extolling DWA and thinking that signing your name to your opinions somehow makes the Jerry Springer-like postings on Delaware Libertarian more defensible as "serious policy debates" rather than simply entertainment (not that entertainment is a bad thing!).


Tyler Nixon said...

LOL : "Jerry Springer-like postings on Delaware Libertarian".

That's rich.

Pray, tell...cite the case. Just one of these "postings". Just one.