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Tuesday, October 02, 2012

OTP: October 2012-THE RACE: As Candidates Prep, Attention in DC split between politics and baseball

While President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney bone up in Nevada and Colorado for Wednesday’s opening debate, back in the nation’s capital attention is split between the hard-fought presidential race and baseball playoffs.

The Nationals won the first division baseball championship for a Washington team since 1933 by clinching the National League East race Monday night.

Washington, D.C., has the only ballpark where so many Cabinet members, politicians and other luminaries routinely gather and where fans now are openly rooting for a particular president — one who served more than a century ago, Theodore Roosevelt.

“Let Teddy Win” banners and buttons are everywhere. Fans like 2008 GOP presidential nominee Sen. John McCain of Arizona say it’s time for Roosevelt’s 500-plus losing streak to end.

[...]

“Teddy, you are the victim of a vast left-wing conspiracy by the commie pinko libs in this town,” McCain said in a video played in the stadium Monday night. “But you can overcome that.”

The October 2012 “OT: Politics” thread starts ... now.

Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 02, 2012 at 02:14 PM | 6119 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: nationals, politics

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   3301. Rickey! In a van on 95 south... Posted: October 20, 2012 at 02:18 PM (#4277492)
Isn't Salt Lake where all the young liberal Mormon spawn move if they can't or won't go out of state?


SLC was surprisingly entertaining, although you really can't get a good drink there to save your life. But it does have the best Mexican restaurant I've ever been to.
   3302. Chip Posted: October 20, 2012 at 02:45 PM (#4277501)
Isn't Salt Lake where all the young liberal Mormon spawn move if they can't or won't go out of state?


Also home to the University of Utah campus and those free-thinking academics, many of them from elsewhere. Even Jews! One of my friends who is a MoTT grew up there as a faculty kid.
   3303. Danny Posted: October 20, 2012 at 02:55 PM (#4277506)
[3275] From that Foreign Policy link:
The administration failed to protect sensitive information when it fled the compound during the attack, so its complaints about Issa's release are hypocritical, Frederick Hill, a spokesman for the Oversight Committee, argued.

Wow, that's pathetic.
   3304. Rickey! In a van on 95 south... Posted: October 20, 2012 at 03:20 PM (#4277522)
The administration failed to protect sensitive information when it fled the compound during the attack, so its complaints about Issa's release are hypocritical, Frederick Hill, a spokesman for the Oversight Committee, argued.
Wow, that's pathetic.


It all makes sense when you realize that the Republican Party puts party ahead of nation in every single instance.
   3305. Bitter Mouse Posted: October 20, 2012 at 03:36 PM (#4277527)
No, it's not. It's not appropriate for you to say what you said.


I kind of agree with tshipman on this, but what does this mouse know?

In other news, I think what annoys me about the accusations regarding Obama and Benghazi (sp?) is the constantly changing bits to it, when at their base none of it means anything.

He shreds the first amendment - but doesn't. It took days to acknowledge "acts of terror" - when it didn't really and even if it had who cares? The President is supposed to be measured in foreign affairs especially when touchy subjects are involved.

He talked about the YouTube clip too much - where Obama engages in diplomacy to the region and talks about their concerns in the context of the First Amendment (there were protests happening in the region at the time, regarding the movie), but he did it wrong (I guess).

And of course security at the consulate! When his administration asked for more money for security and the budget was slashed by the GOP in the house. But Chevy Volts (which would have paid for pretty much no additional security when spread out over all the needed consulates (if only someone had no slashed the security budget).

The the best is of course Obama made it political! You know compared to Romney who made it political while the flames were still burning and the echoes of the shots fired were still ringing.
   3306. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 05:32 PM (#4277592)
My beef with Catholicism is directed at the institution. I've explained this to you, but you pretend not to understand.

How have I pretended not to understand? I said you "hate Catholicism" and you said nothing to refute that.

I don't know any Catholics who are the slightest bit happy about pedophile priests, but it's comical to suggest the Catholic Church oppresses women more than Islam. (I know you qualified your comment by saying "American women," but I don't know what the point of that was. I don't see American Catholic women walking around covered up, nor does the Catholic Church require women to sit in the back at church and demand that menstruating women refrain from praying.)

It's a colorful metaphor. Is it really that offensive to you? After every invective you've hurled at Obama supporters/liberals, this seems a strange place to draw the line.
You don't get to dodge like that-- just because you direct your comments more broadly at "liberals" and "Obama supporters" doesn't make them any less vitriolic.

You seem to have a poor memory or an overactive imagination. I've never remotely said anything here as vulgar as the Bush quip in #3266, nor do I hurl "invective" at Obama supporters here, unless mocking policy positions now qualifies as "invective."

And if you "understood" you wouldn't constantly call people who use aliases cowards.

People who use an alias so they can hurl invective without recourse are cowards. Period. End of story.

I have no problem with people who use an alias but then conduct themselves as if they're not. But you have a long history here of hiding behind an alias while jumping straight to snide, vitriolic commentary and personal attacks.

Further, it's really comical to suggest a teacher can't post online under his or her real name for career reasons, especially during non-work hours. Unless you can't trust yourself not to say something nasty, there's little or no downside.

If you don't think that [insert generic Obama supporter reading your BTF posts after Googling your name] would be offended by the content of what you say here, you have a self-awareness issue that's potentially detrimental. See below.

That's their problem, not mine. I've adopted the snarky BBTF house style, especially in the OT: Politics threads, but I've never said anything here that I wouldn't say to someone's face in a bar or Starbucks or wherever. I'd be very surprised if you could say the same.

But I do know this: anyone with anything resembling a career in 2012 has nothing to gain and everything to lose by posting political comments on a baseball site under their real name, regardless of the content.

This is silly. By this logic, no one making more than $20,000 per year should have a Facebook account, as anything said or posted there can be disseminated online or forwarded to a boss. (I've actually never had a Facebook account, but a couple hundred million Americans obviously do.)

I don't think anyone should choose to do or not do business with Joe based on his political beliefs. But by posting comments that insult people who self-identify as Obama supporters/liberals in a public forum under his real name, he makes it very easy for people to do so.

This is a chance I'm willing to take. It's funny to think that most of the liberals here, who generally decry the role of money in American society, might be hiding behind aliases because they fear losing money. Where's the principle in that?
   3307. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 05:35 PM (#4277593)
Great job, Republicans! In your zeal to try to score political points from Benghazi you just undermined US interests in Libya. Issa and Chaffetz ought to be impeached for this, but of course they won't be.

This is a phony controversy. The second sentence of the article says the documents were "unclassified." If the State Dept. was so concerned for the safety of the people named, why in the hell would their names appear in unclassified documents in the first place, and why weren't the names redacted before they were released to the House Oversight Committee?
   3308. The District Attorney Posted: October 20, 2012 at 05:36 PM (#4277594)
It's funny to think that most of the liberals here, who generally decry the role of money in American society, might be hiding behind aliases because they fear losing money.
Wow, great point.
   3309. Lassus Posted: October 20, 2012 at 05:47 PM (#4277601)
Definition of INVECTIVE

: of, relating to, or characterized by insult or abuse

Joe, I'm not in agreement with dp's referred-to post, but the idea that you aren't guilty of invective (emphasis mine) in these threads just shows a lack of understanding of the word.
   3310. OCF Posted: October 20, 2012 at 05:52 PM (#4277603)
You know what would improve the flow and tone of these OT-P threads? A posting quota. Imagine if every individual poster was limited to 5 posts a day and 20 posts a week. That's not all that stringent. You could still have your say. You could still reply to people. Heck, you could still be a troll. You just couldn't be a tiresome troll.
   3311. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: October 20, 2012 at 06:04 PM (#4277615)
You know what would improve the flow and tone of these OT-P threads? A posting quota. Imagine if every individual poster was limited to 5 posts a day and 20 posts a week. That's not all that stringent. You could still have your say. You could still reply to people. Heck, you could still be a troll. You just couldn't be a tiresome troll.


Of course a liberal would recommend more regulation.
   3312. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 06:09 PM (#4277622)
Joe, I'm not in agreement with dp's referred-to post, but the idea that you aren't guilty of invective (emphasis mine) in these threads just shows a lack of understanding of the word.

I guess you have a very low hurdle for what you interpret to be "invective."

Dictionary.com has the primary definition of "invective" to be "vehement or violent denunciation, censure, or reproach" (as a noun) and "vituperative; denunciatory; censoriously abusive" (as an adjective). I don't believe saying things like "typical liberals" or "typical Obama supporter" rises to those levels, but others are free to disagree.

***
Of course a liberal would recommend more regulation.

Well done.
   3313. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 20, 2012 at 06:10 PM (#4277623)
You know what would improve the flow and tone of these OT-P threads? A posting quota. Imagine if every individual poster was limited to 5 posts a day and 20 posts a week. That's not all that stringent. You could still have your say. You could still reply to people. Heck, you could still be a troll. You just couldn't be a tiresome troll.

You could just put him on ignore.
   3314. Lassus Posted: October 20, 2012 at 06:22 PM (#4277629)
Dictionary.com has the primary definition of "invective" to be "vehement or violent denunciation, censure, or reproach" (as a noun) and "vituperative; denunciatory; censoriously abusive" (as an adjective). I don't believe saying things like "typical liberals" or "typical Obama supporter" rises to those levels, but others are free to disagree.

Jesus Christmas. My definition was Merriam Websters'. Here's Oxford's:
Definition of invective
noun
insulting, abusive, or highly critical language:
(Emphasis again mine) Have you called people liars? Have you called people stupid? Have you called their posts ignorant? Have you mocked people's positions? Say no and you aren't guilty of invective. You'd also be wrong.

I'm not even saying invective is an unforgivable thing OMG, I'm simply saying your posts contain it.
   3315. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 06:41 PM (#4277637)
(Emphasis again mine) Have you called people liars? Have you called people stupid? Have you called their posts ignorant? Have you mocked people's positions? Say no and you aren't guilty of invective. You'd also be wrong.

"Liar" isn't really an insult if it's accurate, and I don't recall calling anyone here "stupid" or "ignorant."

I have, indeed, "mocked people's positions" — I admitted as such right in #3306 — but mocking a position isn't the same as a personal attack. (I know a lot of lefties here are so offended by non-liberal positions that they interpret such positions as personal attacks, but that's not what they are.)

Anyway, I'm not interested in a pedantic debate regarding the various meanings of the word "invective," so I'll plead guilty if it puts an end to this.
   3316. Lassus Posted: October 20, 2012 at 07:07 PM (#4277642)
I know a lot of lefties here are so offended by non-liberal positions that they interpret such positions as personal attacks

You are one weird dude.
   3317. Bitter Mouse Posted: October 20, 2012 at 07:08 PM (#4277643)
In general Joe attacks comments (in a very disrespectful way) but not posters. However I think banging on people because they post under an alias is feeble. There is nothing at all wrong with posting under whatever name you want.

Signed,

Mr. B. Mouse
   3318. formerly dp Posted: October 20, 2012 at 07:10 PM (#4277645)
but it's comical to suggest the Catholic Church oppresses women more than Islam. (I know you qualified your comment by saying "American women," but I don't know what the point of that was. I don't see American Catholic women walking around covered up, nor does the Catholic Church require women to sit in the back at church and demand that menstruating women refrain from praying.)


The qualifier matters. The Catholic church has done more to retard the progress of American woman than any other institution in the country's history-- especially when it comes to their advocating against sex education. Things have gotten a lot better in the past century, but only because the church has gradually lost power and popular support.

But it's nice to see that your bar for treating women equally is fundamentalist Islam. That's a high standard to be held to.

You seem to have a poor memory or an overactive imagination. I've never remotely said anything here as vulgar as the Bush quip in #3266, nor do I hurl "invective" at Obama supporters here, unless mocking policy positions now qualifies as "invective."


Was it three or four days ago that you, painting with a broad brush, described any African American who changed their position on gay marriage after Obama's public switch as "pathetic"? Not an insult? And before you say that's different because it wasn't directed at anyone here-- this is a public board, and while we do have a fairly homogenous community, you never know who is lurking.

People who use an alias so they can hurl invective without recourse are cowards. Period. End of story.


Gee, that sort of sounds like an insult. I thought you didn't do that?

But you have a long history here of hiding behind an alias while jumping straight to snide, vitriolic commentary and personal attacks.


You throw stones too Joe. Doing it with your real name attached does not make it virtuous, it just suggests a lack of self-awareness.

Further, it's really comical to suggest a teacher can't post online under his or her real name for career reasons, especially during non-work hours. Unless you can't trust yourself not to say something nasty, there's little or no downside.


I'm going to go out on a limb and guess you know little about how much politics are involved in hiring and tenuring decisions. On this board, I have outed myself as a supporter of gay rights, someone who does not plan to vote for either of the two major party candidates, and as a strong opponent of one particular religious institution. Regardless of how I state those positions, there's no upside to me attaching my name to them, and a whole ton of downside.

but I've never said anything here that I wouldn't say to someone's face in a bar or Starbucks or wherever.


So: would you tell an African American who switched their position on gay marriage after Obama came out in support of it that her change of heart was "pathetic"?

I'd be very surprised if you could say the same.


I would say everything I said to you in my post to your face.

This is silly. By this logic, no one making more than $20,000 per year should have a Facebook account, as anything said or posted there can be disseminated online or forwarded to a boss. (I've actually never had a Facebook account, but a couple hundred million Americans obviously do.)


Welcome to the modern workplace. Students get in trouble all of the time for things they post to Facebook. An athlete gets cut from a team for skipping practice and posting a picture of himself at the beach instead of being home sick in bed. A student doesn't get an internship because a conservative/liberal employer doesn't like their politics, and prefers to work with like-minded people. Anyone who works in education, or in HR, is hyperaware of this issue right now; we discuss it with students and employers all of the time. I don't like it-- and I think when this current generation comes of age, you'll see a push for some (oh no, oh no!) regulations limiting what employers can and can't look at in their vetting process. But for right now, this is the world we exist in. And Facebook has more privacy checks/filters than BTF (I am also not on FB, fwiw).

This is a chance I'm willing to take.


Well, I think you're underestimating the risks, especially given that this is a site frequented by people in your industry. No one will ever say to you directly "we don't want to work with you because we don't like the trollish way you carry yourself on BTF". They don't have to. They just see your application in the stack, recognize your name, and say "hey isn't that the dude who spends 30-odd hours a week dissing liberals on BTF?" and move on to the next one. That's how it works. And I know you think your blanket attacks on liberals and Obama and African Americans are all very reasonable, but the audience for these comments isn't necessarily inclined toward such a charitable read.

It's funny to think that most of the liberals here, who generally decry the role of money in American society, might be hiding behind aliases because they fear losing money. Where's the principle in that?


It's partially about money. It's also partially about the ability to say what I want on my off time without having to run it by my current employer, or imagine what a potential employer in 2025 might think about a statement made in 2012.
   3319. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 07:18 PM (#4277647)
You are one weird dude.

This might be true, but not for the reason you allege. It's really comical that I've somehow become the Black Bart of BBTF's politics threads. You (and others) seem to have convinced yourselves that I have some long history of personal attacks here, but every time I challenge you to find some examples, you beg off. It's lame.
   3320. bobm Posted: October 20, 2012 at 07:36 PM (#4277653)
Apparently it is okay to fly drones into foreign airspace to assassinate suspected terrorists (and thereby terrorize the civilian population), but not so much to defend a US consulate in a country the US recently helped liberate.

Could U.S. military have helped during Libya attack?
October 20, 2012
Last Updated 3:40 p.m. ET
(CBS News) The closer we get to the election, the harder Republicans in Congress are pushing for answers to a big question: What really happened in the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya last month that killed the U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans?

Some lawmakers are asking why U.S. military help from outside Libya didn't arrive as terrorists battered more than 30 Americans over the course of more than seven hours. The assault was launched by an armed mob of dozens that torched buildings and used rocket propelled grenades, mortars and AK-47 rifles.

CBS News has been told that, hours after the attack began, an unmanned Predator drone was sent over the U.S. mission in Benghazi, and that the drone and other reconnaissance aircraft apparently observed the final hours of the protracted battle.

The State Department, White House and Pentagon declined to say what military options were available. A White House official told CBS News that, at the start of the attack, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta "looked at available options, and the ones we exercised had our military forces arrive in less than 24 hours, well ahead of timelines laid out in established policies."

But it was too late to help the Americans in Benghazi. The ambassador and three others were dead.

A White House official told CBS News that a "small group of reinforcements" was sent from Tripoli to Benghazi, but declined to say how many or what time they arrived.

Retired CIA officer Gary Berntsen believes help could have come much sooner. He commanded CIA counter-terrorism missions targeting Osama bin Laden and led the team that responded after bombings of the U.S. Embassy in East Africa.

"You find a way to make this happen," Berntsen says. "There isn't a plan for every single engagement. Sometimes you have to be able to make adjustments. They made zero adjustments in this. They stood and they watched and our people died."

The Pentagon says it did move a team of special operators from central Europe to the large Naval Air Station in Sigonella, Italy, but gave no other details. Sigonella is just an hour's flight from Libya. Other nearby bases include Aviano and Souda Bay. Military sources tell CBS News that resources at the three bases include fighter jets and Specter AC-130 gunships, which the sources say can be extremely effective in flying in and buzzing a crowd to disperse it.

Rick Nelson, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and a former Navy pilot who worked in counter-terrorism, says such missions can be very risky. "A lot can go well, right, as we saw with the bin Laden raid. It was a very successful event," he says. "But also, when there are high risk activities like this. a lot can go wrong, as we saw with the Iranian hostage rescue decades ago."

Add to the controversy the fact that the last two Americans didn't die until more than six hours into the attack, and the question of U.S. military help becomes very important.Sending the military into another country can be a sensitive and delicate decision. CBS News has been told Secretary of State Hillary Clinton did seek clearances from Libya to fly in their airspace, but the administration won't say anything further about what was said or decided on that front.
   3321. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 07:36 PM (#4277654)
Was it three or four days ago that you, painting with a broad brush, described any African American who changed their position on gay marriage after Obama's public switch as "pathetic"? Not an insult? And before you say that's different because it wasn't directed at anyone here-- this is a public board, and while we do have a fairly homogenous community, you never know who is lurking.

If you changed your position on a matter of basic human equality simply because some celebrity did so, then yes, it's pathetic.

People who use an alias so they can hurl invective without recourse are cowards. Period. End of story.
Gee, that sort of sounds like an insult. I thought you didn't do that?

I don't hurl insults while hiding behind an alias. And calling you a coward was more truth than insult. You and I both know you have no real need to hide behind an alias other than to protect your ability to act in an impolite and crass manner.

I'm going to go out on a limb and guess you know little about how much politics are involved in hiring and tenuring decisions. On this board, I have outed myself as a supporter of gay rights, someone who does not plan to vote for either of the two major party candidates, and as a strong opponent of one particular religious institution. Regardless of how I state those positions, there's no upside to me attaching my name to them, and a whole ton of downside.

So you admit you put money ahead of principles. It was brave of you to confirm this for us.

So: would you tell an African American who switched their position on gay marriage after Obama came out in support of it that her change of heart was "pathetic"?

Yes, I would. Without hesitation. Anyone willing to deny basic human equality to a group of people based on whim deserves all the scorn they receive.

I would say everything I said to you in my post to your face.

But you don't want it recorded for posterity. Got it.

Well, I think you're underestimating the risks, especially given that this is a site frequented by people in your industry. No one will ever say to you directly "we don't want to work with you because we don't like the trollish way you carry yourself on BTF". They don't have to. They just see your application in the stack, recognize your name, and say "hey isn't that the dude who spends 30-odd hours a week dissing liberals on BTF?" and move on to the next one. That's how it works. And I know you think your blanket attacks on liberals and Obama and African Americans are all very reasonable, but the audience for these comments isn't necessarily inclined toward such a charitable read.

Well, I haven't applied for any jobs within MLB since around 1995, so that's not much of a concern. As for the "trollish way" nonsense, that just shows how liberal this place is. In a country where Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are tied 47-47 in the polls, Obama was leading the OT: Politics thread 90-10 in Andy's poll last month. The lefties here are in such a cocoon that non-liberal viewpoints shock their conscience.

It's partially about money. It's also partially about the ability to say what I want on my off time without having to run it by my current employer, or imagine what a potential employer in 2025 might think about a statement made in 2012.

Since when do college professors (or just about anyone else) need to run their off-time comments by their employer?
   3322. Lassus Posted: October 20, 2012 at 07:39 PM (#4277656)
have convinced yourselves that I have some long history of personal attacks

Long history? Personal attacks? I said what? Words mean something. Your tone in multiple responses has absolutely, positively, been disrespectful and insulting. NOTE: ahem NOTE: PLEASE PAY ATTENTION NOTE: I do think that people insult you personally far more than you insult others, as a response to this tone.


but every time I challenge you to find some examples, you beg off.

That's embarrassing, Shipman. You should use the "edit" button before the clock runs out.
This is comical.
It's comical for a liberal to use that as a screen name here and expect to be taken seriously.
I'm embarrassed for you
If you don't mean these as insults or personal attacks, you really are an expert at something.

And, lastly, let us not forget your most frequent non-insulting, respectful response to liberals' posts:
LOL


Lastly, I said you were a weird dude because you cited multiple incidents of liberals considering being disagreed with as a personal attack. Where the hell did THIS happen?
   3323. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 08:01 PM (#4277664)
Lassus, you seem like a nice guy, but you have an odd habit of taking the least important aspect of a discussion and making a federal case out of it.

But just to play along, if "embarrassing," "comical," and "LOL" are the worst examples of the "personal attacks" I've launched here, I rest my case.

Lastly, I said you were a weird dude because you cited multiple incidents of liberals considering being disagreed with as a personal attack. Where the hell did THIS happen?

Where are some examples of the vicious personal attacks I've (allegedly) launched here? If you can't find any, despite people apparently seeing me as a frequent hurler of nasty invective, then it would appear that liberals here have deluded themselves into interpreting non-liberal positions as "personal attacks." Otherwise, there's no other explanation for the gulf between perception and reality, as far as I can tell.
   3324. formerly dp Posted: October 20, 2012 at 08:19 PM (#4277683)
If you changed your position on a matter of basic human equality simply because some celebrity did so, then yes, it's pathetic.


This was explained to you. You ignore the argument rather than engaging with it.

I don't hurl insults while hiding behind an alias. And calling you a coward was more truth than insult.


So if I called you a pathetic loser, I could claim the same out? Calling someone a coward is an insult, no matter how much you think it's just a description of reality.

I'm going to go out on a limb and guess you know little about how much politics are involved in hiring and tenuring decisions. On this board, I have outed myself as a supporter of gay rights, someone who does not plan to vote for either of the two major party candidates, and as a strong opponent of one particular religious institution. Regardless of how I state those positions, there's no upside to me attaching my name to them, and a whole ton of downside.

So you admit you put money ahead of principles. It was brave of you to confirm this for us.


What "principle" am I prioritizing money ahead of? You're the one attaching a virtue to signing one's real name on a baseball site. That's not a principle I've expressed any devotion to.

But you don't want it recorded for posterity. Got it.


This is non-responsive. You claimed i would not say what I said on this board to your face. I would.

Well, I haven't applied for any jobs within MLB since around 1995, so that's not much of a concern.


I didn't say anything out MLB; I said people who work in your industry, some of whom frequent this board, might wish to not do business with you in the future (maybe in the form of not hiring you, not giving you a contract, whatever). Careers are long and unpredictable, and it's not a bad idea to cleave your political opinions from your professional life in the interests of making yours the best in can be. We hear students say the same thing-- "I'm going to own my own business, so it doesn't matter what I post to Facebook."

As for the "trollish way" nonsense, that just shows how liberal this place is.


Again, it's not your opinions. It's the way you state them, and intellectually dishonest way that you engage with people when they disagree with them.

Since when do college professors (or just about anyone else) need to run their off-time comments by their employer?


Well, at least since the internet. But I'm sure hiring and promotion decisions in public education are something else you'll feign expertise on.
   3325. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 08:38 PM (#4277692)
This was explained to you. You ignore the argument rather than engaging with it.

I didn't ignore the argument; I just don't buy into it. The idea that millions of blacks needed Barack Obama to give a half-hearted endorsement of gay marriage before they were willing to do so themselves is pathetic. It means that millions of blacks were previously willing to deny — and, indeed, were voting to deny — basic human equality to gays based on little more than whim.

So if I called you a pathetic loser, I could claim the same out? Calling someone a coward is an insult, no matter how much you think it's just a description of reality.

Well, I'm definitely a pathetic loser for continuing this dialogue, so you'd be right on that score. But the original discussion was about the use of an alias for purposes of hurling insults, and only one of us is guilty of that.

What "principle" am I prioritizing money ahead of? You're the one attaching a virtue to signing one's real name on a baseball site. That's not a principle I've expressed any devotion to.

You're clearly prioritizing your paycheck and title over your political "principles." (I'm sure you object to the scare quotes, but if you only have principles when there's no potential downside to having them, then they're not really principles in the first place.)

Again, it's not your opinions. It's the way you state them, and intellectually dishonest way that you engage with people when they disagree with them.

Yes, as opposed to the open-minded liberals here who approach every discussion with cool, dispassionate neutrality. Give me a break.

Well, at least since the internet. But I'm sure hiring and promotion decisions in public education are something else you'll feign expertise on.

I had never heard that college professors needed their superiors' permission to post comments online in their off time. That's definitely a new one. And given that public education and college campuses tend to be overwhelmingly liberal, it's kind of funny to read that you fear that having "outed [yourself] as a supporter of gay rights" might cause you professional harm. I guess you only stand with the gays when your paycheck and title aren't at risk.
   3326. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: October 20, 2012 at 09:19 PM (#4277709)
My instincts are actually with Joe on the issue of disclosure, and anyone coming here can find my full identity with just a few clicks of a mouse.

But then I've been my own boss for nearly 30 years, and I can't fire myself. OTOH, look at what's happened to a woman at Galludet University who was put on leave simply for signing a petition requesting that a Maryland Same Sex Marriage initiative be put on the ballot. Regardless of what you think about the underlying issue, this is pretty strong evidence in support of dp's position.

Both Sides Of The Gay Marriage Debate Demand Reinstatement Of Gallaudet University Official
   3327. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 09:40 PM (#4277716)
That Gallaudet story is like something out of The Onion. A black woman with a phony-baloney "diversity" job apparently believes in diversity for herself but not for others. You can't make this stuff up.
   3328. flournoy Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:04 PM (#4277729)
I think when this current generation comes of age, you'll see a push for some (oh no, oh no!) regulations limiting what employers can and can't look at in their vetting process


Explain how this would work. If I were an employer, and there were some regulations dictating that I couldn't look at Facebook or Twitter or who-knows-what to inform my hiring decision, I can't see how it would influence me in the least. I'd check it out anyway, but I'd never cite it as a reason for a hiring decision. I have a hard time working up much sympathy for someone whose online presence deters employers. That's his or her own fault.
   3329. formerly dp Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:05 PM (#4277730)
I didn't ignore the argument; I just don't buy into it.


No, what you've done here is decide to think for people-- you put words in their mouths. You've not letting them explain their reasoning-- you're explaining it for them, based on messy inferences from some survey results.

But the original discussion was about the use of an alias for purposes of hurling insults, and only one of us is guilty of that.


That's not why I use the alias. You can claim that's my motive all you want, but that doesn't make it so.

You're clearly prioritizing your paycheck and title over your political "principles."


You still haven't identified a principle. Does attaching my name to my posts here advance any of the causes I'm talking about? Again, doing so is all downside, with no upside.

Yes, as opposed to the open-minded liberals here who approach every discussion with cool, dispassionate neutrality. Give me a break.


Again, not your opinions, your style. Not that you get emotional, that you fling #### about liberals, and then when you get called on it, you can't follow an argument from point A to point B to actually engage with any sort of intellectual honesty.

I had never heard that college professors needed their superiors' permission to post comments online in their off time.


They don't. But there can certainly be blowback for free expression in a public forum, especially if you're untenured. "That's a new one" is an admission of ignorance, rather than a refutation.

And given that public education and college campuses tend to be overwhelmingly liberal,


You say this a lot. Are you unaware that the people who oversee public education at the highest levels of state government are often conservatives? It's one of the reasons that we sometimes have to be very careful about how publicly we stake positions, because when we speak, we are always seen as speaking, at least in some way, for the college. Knowing your audience is important.

it's kind of funny to read that you fear that having "outed [yourself] as a supporter of gay rights" might cause you professional harm.


You pick your battles. Sometimes you have to keep your head down in the short term to make bigger waves in the long-term. The career is a marathon, not a sprint.
   3330. Spahn Insane Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:10 PM (#4277732)
That Gallaudet story is like something out of The Onion. A black woman with a phony-baloney "diversity" job apparently believes in diversity for herself but not for others. You can't make this stuff up.

Apropos.
   3331. formerly dp Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:20 PM (#4277739)
Explain how this would work.


I don't really have a good explanation (I'll try a little below), but I agree with the thrust of your post-- it would be really difficult to enforce. Other labor laws are difficult to enforce too.

If I were an employer, and there were some regulations dictating that I couldn't look at Facebook or Twitter or who-knows-what to inform my hiring decision, I can't see how it would influence me in the least. I'd check it out anyway, but I'd never cite it as a reason for a hiring decision. I have a hard time working up much sympathy for someone whose online presence deters employers. That's his or her own fault.


Right now, it's SOP to do a social networking/Facebook check when you're hiring someone-- and this can involve asking job candidates for their Facebook passwords as part of the application process. If there were a regulation in place barring this, then it wouldn't stop it, but it would push that sort of thing underground. And I'm not saying I agree with this hypothetical, difficult to enforce legislation. People posting pictures of themselves getting high, I pretty much agree with you that this is stupid behavior. But right now, what's happening to kids in college is they're being told (by employers!) never to express anything that could be considered in any way controversial online. So a lot of them are saying: I don't think it's ethical for my potential employer, who was not the audience for this post when I wrote it, to snoop into my online identity and make judgements about me based on it. Right now, some of them are self-policing. Others have had fairly innocuous things come back to bite them in the ass. And I think in 10 to 20 years, when a generation who came of age dealing with this sort of self-censorship gets to be in charge of hiring practices, you'll either see it just be a frowned upon practice (the preferred way to go at it), or you'll see people actually agitate for some sort of legislation.

This is the Facebook Bills of Rights, for example. I'm not endorsing what they're suggesting, just linking to it so you can get a sense of what young people are saying on the subject.
   3332. robinred Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:23 PM (#4277740)
In general Joe attacks comments (in a very disrespectful way) but not posters.

________________________________________________________________________________

If you use a very narrow definition of personal attacks, sure. But Kehoskie says stuff like this in pretty much every other post:

The lefties here are in such a cocoon that non-liberal viewpoints shock their conscience.


Self-serving BS like that is going to cause friction and get someone insulted who does it repeatedly. One thing I have found about BTF, is that for the most part, you get what you give. In my own experience, when I say snarky crap, I get it back, and when I don't, I usually don't.

But then I've been my own boss for nearly 30 years, and I can't fire myself.


Demographics. You are 69 years old, semi-retired. But if I were trying to run/start a small business in today's economy, I would be careful as well--potential customers might be reading and my name and rep are attached to the business. As fdp suggests, it is just a percentage move, and I have heard three stories in the last six months around school about people (teachers and students) getting into sticky professional/personal situations due to "stuff on the internet."



   3333. Spahn Insane Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:32 PM (#4277745)
The lefties here are in such a cocoon that non-liberal viewpoints shock their conscience.

Self-serving BS like that is going to cause friction and get someone insulted who does it repeatedly.


Right; he uses the generic "lefties" or "liberals" so he has plausible deniability when accused of "personal" attacks, when it's clear to anyone reading who he's directing his comments toward. It's akin to saying "I didn't insult YOU--just your ilk."

   3334. Spahn Insane Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:35 PM (#4277747)
Right now, it's SOP to do a social networking/Facebook check when you're hiring someone-- and this can involve asking job candidates for their Facebook passwords as part of the application process.

This practice is illegal in Illinois, though perhaps nowhere else.
   3335. The District Attorney Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:38 PM (#4277749)
I wouldn't even worry about potential clients/employers of the opposite political persuasion disagreeing with one's comments... I'd worry about what said potential clients/employers thought of:

A) Having seemingly unlimited free time to spend on a meaningless pursuit
B) Coming off like an utter ass whom no one would ever voluntarily want to be around
   3336. robinred Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:41 PM (#4277751)
A) Having seemingly unlimited free time to spend on a meaningless pursuit
B) Coming off like an utter ass whom no one would ever voluntarily want to be around


Indeed.
   3337. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:45 PM (#4277754)
Apropos.

That was good. I doubt anyone saw that switcheroo coming.

Right; he uses the generic "lefties" or "liberals" so he has plausible deniability when accused of "personal" attacks, when it's clear to anyone reading who he's directing his comments toward. It's akin to saying "I didn't insult YOU--just your ilk."

Sorry, but you have to be very thin-skinned to consider a comment like "typical lefty" to be a personal attack, especially in a politics thread that people are voluntarily reading and posting in. I suppose we could shift to talking like U.S. senators all the time; if so, I'm confident I'm not among the top 20 people in this thread whose civility level would need the most improvement.
   3338. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: October 21, 2012 at 12:24 AM (#4277789)
But then I've been my own boss for nearly 30 years, and I can't fire myself.

Demographics. You are 69 years old, semi-retired.


Hey, when you get to this point, don't be piling on extra years: I'm 68, not 69. (smile)

But if I were trying to run/start a small business in today's economy, I would be careful as well--potential customers might be reading and my name and rep are attached to the business. As fdp suggests, it is just a percentage move, and I have heard three stories in the last six months around school about people (teachers and students) getting into sticky professional/personal situations due to "stuff on the internet."

Kind of depends on the business and kind of depends on what sort of comments you plan on posting. I used to write comments (in pencil, obviously) in half the books I sold, and if anything that turned out to be a positive, not a negative, at least by the feedback I got. But again, the last thing I'd want to do is to extrapolate from a somewhat unique and totally personalized niche business to the generic sort of business that you likely have in mind.

But I do think it also depends on the nature of your comments.** Look, there are tens of thousands of business owners who engage in politics and political commentary under their real names, and while once in a blue moon it may have hurt their business somewhat, it's something that they've learned to live with.*** I think it'd be much more problematic for someone whose financial future depended on the whims of a narrow minded bureaucracy than for someone who in the end has to answer only to himself and his customers.

**Has it really hurt that Ravens player who's spoken out in favor of gay marriage? I doubt it. But if he'd started engaging in disrespectful diatribes against those who disagree with him, or went over the edge like John Rocker, that'd be another story altogether.

***Has that Chick-Fil-A owner really suffered because of his outspokenness? Not that I can tell. Have David Nieporent or Steve Treder been adversely affected by their political comments here? They sure haven't said anything about it if they have been.
   3339. Spahn Insane Posted: October 21, 2012 at 12:27 AM (#4277794)
That was good. I doubt anyone saw that switcheroo coming.

No. It was made even better by his selling the word "segregation," which totally got me.
   3340. Spahn Insane Posted: October 21, 2012 at 12:30 AM (#4277797)
Sorry, but you have to be very thin-skinned to consider a comment like "typical lefty" to be a personal attack, especially in a politics thread that people are voluntarily reading and posting in.

Well, it's not the mere reference to "typical lefties" that's the insult--it's whatever accompanies it. But in any case, speaking only for myself, I find it less insulting than tiresome. (Hence Lassus's mock drinking game based thereupon.)
   3341. tshipman Posted: October 21, 2012 at 12:34 AM (#4277799)
Sorry, but you have to be very thin-skinned to consider a comment like "typical lefty" to be a personal attack, especially in a politics thread that people are voluntarily reading and posting in.


It's rude, and it contributes to the level of vitriol hurling in your direction. That's not to excuse people from making personal and inflammatory remarks, but you saying things like "typical liberal" or whatever is very rude. I don't listen to Rush Limbaugh, and I don't appreciate his rhetoric.
   3342. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 12:35 AM (#4277801)
Ooh, an alias fight. Haven't had one of those in months. I'll come back later.
   3343. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: October 21, 2012 at 12:41 AM (#4277805)
My instincts are actually with Joe on the issue of disclosure, and anyone coming here can find my full identity with just a few clicks of a mouse.
I find this astonishing, and more than a little stupid, and I feel I can say this because I used to post under my real name on here, and actually lost my job because of it. (Long-time loungers know the story.)

Why is it important that we use real names? Because it lends "integrity" to these arguments? Please. Most of us don't know each other, and never will. The arguments being put forth won't be any different if we used our real names. No minds will be changed if we suddenly started using real names. The only thing we have to gain by using real names is the worthless respect of people we don't know and affect us in no real way.

The "real name" thing is an incredibly stupid argument to hang one's hat upon. Who cares if that's a real name? How do I know that it's a real name? Why should I care if it's real or not? If you're going to hang your argument on "I put my name on it", then you're a loser to think that anyone — here or anywhere — cares if you put your name on it or not.
   3344. robinred Posted: October 21, 2012 at 12:43 AM (#4277806)
I think it'd be much more problematic for someone whose financial future depended on the whims of a narrow minded bureaucracy than for someone who in the end has to answer only to himself and his customers.


Perhaps. OTOH, someone in my position has various protections whereas a business owner mostly has his or her name and rep. You have talked many, many times about customer service in a small business, which in some ways simply means "Using common sense and not being a ########." One can be a ########--or not--on the net as well as anywhere else. And, it would not surprise me if many people these days Google the names of owners of businesses whose products they buy or are considering buying. Also, "narrow minded bureaucracies" have loci of discretionary power, which often revolve around the "whims" of individuals who might see something on the net that they don't like.

As to Nieporent and Treder, that is a fair point, but it equally fair to note that virtually no one else here, except Tufts and a few others, posts under his real name any more, and three high-profile guys in the politics threads have stopped using their names over the last few months.

The Ravens guy? Too early to tell. What if he wants to go into coaching, maybe at a college with very socially conservative guys running the athletic department? Like fdp says, this stuff is not usually going to be up front and open, and careers are long and often complex.

Like I said: it is a percentage move.
   3345. robinred Posted: October 21, 2012 at 12:49 AM (#4277811)
because I used to post under my real name on here, and actually lost my job because of it.

Yikes. I didn't know that.
   3346. Gaelan Posted: October 21, 2012 at 01:01 AM (#4277818)
Regardless of how I state those positions, there's no upside to me attaching my name to them, and a whole ton of downside.


I am also an academic. I also happen to know "formerly's" real name, as well as disagree fundamentally with him in an academic sense. All that as context to the following statement: there is little doubt that he is right about this.

I use my real name, but I shouldn't. It's certainly no badge of honour that should lend my arguments greater credibility. Indeed, I probably should change it.
   3347. Spahn Insane Posted: October 21, 2012 at 01:10 AM (#4277821)
I find this astonishing, and more than a little stupid, and I feel I can say this because I used to post under my real name on here, and actually lost my job because of it.

Whoa. I didn't know that either. Anything you're willing to share here (FWIW, I know your real name, so no need to re-out yourself)?
   3348. Steve Treder Posted: October 21, 2012 at 01:46 AM (#4277829)
Not that I can tell. Have David Nieporent or Steve Treder been adversely affected by their political comments here? They sure haven't said anything about it if they have been.

I certainly haven't been. But I see that as a function of:

- While I'm not as ancient as Andy, I'm in my mid-50s, well-known and well-established in my arcane little field, and have worked for the past dozen years for a small firm that doesn't give a rip about stuff like this

- In the real world, almost nobody has the faintest idea what the hell BTF is, and wouldn't care what was posted on it if they did
   3349. tshipman Posted: October 21, 2012 at 02:33 AM (#4277834)
I don't get why the "real name" thing is a big deal. My handle is my first initial and last name because I am truly horrible at remembering logins.

It hasn't ever impacted me, and I'm quite a bit younger than Steve or Andy (about half as old).
   3350. Greg K Posted: October 21, 2012 at 04:36 AM (#4277848)
Re: "insults", "personal attacks"

I think it might be helpful to clarify what people are talking about. Robinred's post gets pretty close to my perspective. There's a whole range of ways to be disrespectful to the person you're talking to - from getting directly personal to just casually calling someone stupid. Not every insult is made equally. So I see Joe's defence in 3323 having some merit...certainly in the last 200 comments or so he's received more than he's given out based on my insult-o-ramic geiger counter. But to get back to my original point, what's the upside of any kind of insult, no matter what the degree it is intended to denigrate? And I ask this as a genuine question. Is it a release of anger in the moment? (seems unlikely) Is it an attempt to cow the other person into submission? (If so, I don't think I've ever in the history of BTF seen that work) Is it a play to the peanut gallery? (perhaps readers will assume the one who seems to most shocked at the other's stupidity must be right) Does it just make the speaker feel better about him/herself?

I'm just trying to see the point of it. Because it can derail perfectly educational discussions like this one with these asides into inanity, which is annoying. It seems to really detract from furthering discussion and provides no upside that I can see. So what's going on?

EDIT: As for names, I'm young enough to have grown up with the rule "don't share your name on the internet!" from my mom, which I still have in my head. I have shared my last name on BTF before though I don't put it in my handle. With regards to facebook, I actually had to submit a photograph of myself for the contacts page of a conference I'm helping to organize last week, and after sifting through about 150 photos of my on facebook I realized not one of them is suitable. I have a real dislike of being photographed which unfortunately I only overcome when I've had WAY too much to drink. I don't really know how to work the facebook privacy settings, but I'm currently looking for the setting that allows no one to see any photo you're tagged in.
   3351. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: October 21, 2012 at 07:43 AM (#4277857)
My instincts are actually with Joe on the issue of disclosure, and anyone coming here can find my full identity with just a few clicks of a mouse.

But then I've been my own boss for nearly 30 years, and I can't fire myself. OTOH, look at what's happened to a woman at Galludet University who was put on leave simply for signing a petition requesting that a Maryland Same Sex Marriage initiative be put on the ballot. Regardless of what you think about the underlying issue, this is pretty strong evidence in support of dp's position.


I find this astonishing, and more than a little stupid, and I feel I can say this because I used to post under my real name on here, and actually lost my job because of it. (Long-time loungers know the story.)

What I find astonishing is to see someone jumping all over the first sentence of another Primate's comment without even acknowledging that he's already dealt with the complaint in the paragraph that immediately followed it, and in fact wasn't even disagreeing with the complainant's bottom line position.

Why is it important that we use real names? Because it lends "integrity" to these arguments? Please. Most of us don't know each other, and never will. The arguments being put forth won't be any different if we used our real names. No minds will be changed if we suddenly started using real names. The only thing we have to gain by using real names is the worthless respect of people we don't know and affect us in no real way.

The "real name" thing is an incredibly stupid argument to hang one's hat upon. Who cares if that's a real name? How do I know that it's a real name? Why should I care if it's real or not? If you're going to hang your argument on "I put my name on it", then you're a loser to think that anyone — here or anywhere — cares if you put your name on it or not.


You've been posting here for what seems like forever, and the tone of your comments has given you credibility. You don't need your name or real world CV to cement that. And your past experience certainly gives you good reason to be cautious.

But that's not always the case, and what makes sense in one context doesn't always apply in another context.

Take, for example, the night and day difference between the tone of the letters that get published in the print edition of the Washington Post, and the tone of the comments that accompanies every article on their online edition.

The print edition requires a real name and a verifiable address and phone number, and the real name is printed right below every published letter.** Their website only requires pro forma registration, with full anonymity allowed after that.

As a result, while the letters in the print edition are generally coherent and invective-free, and try to address an issue with at least a certain amount of logic, the few coherent comments on their website get drowned out by personal attacks and / or thinly veiled Birther-level racism. While we've got Furtado here to put a stop to the worst examples of this***, it's only his presence and the relatively small town atmosphere of BTF that stops BTF from also going over the deep end into endless vitriol and irrelevancy.

Admittedly this doesn't address the point about the value of anonymity from the Primate's POV, which once again, I can see the need for. But if Furtado disappeared completely and BTF somehow exploded in terms of exposure, I don't think any of us here would really like the outcome.

**The weak point here is that when an institutional name is attached, there is seldom any indication of the political slant of that institution, a problem which becomes more acute in our age of wonderful PAC euphemisms. ("People For The American Way"; "Club For Growth"; not to mention any group that includes "Justice" or "Family Values" in its name)

***Irony duly noted
   3352. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: October 21, 2012 at 07:51 AM (#4277858)
BTW if anyone ever wonders just how the first black president manages to balance the race issue in a country as politically polarized as ours, this article describes Obama's narrow path with both sympathy and objectivity. It's too bad that the people who might benefit most from the article are the ones who are probably least likely to take the time to read it, but here it is anyway:

For President, a Complex Calculus of Race and Politics
   3353. CrosbyBird Posted: October 21, 2012 at 08:22 AM (#4277861)
But to get back to my original point, what's the upside of any kind of insult, no matter what the degree it is intended to denigrate? And I ask this as a genuine question. Is it a release of anger in the moment? (seems unlikely) Is it an attempt to cow the other person into submission? (If so, I don't think I've ever in the history of BTF seen that work) Is it a play to the peanut gallery? (perhaps readers will assume the one who seems to most shocked at the other's stupidity must be right) Does it just make the speaker feel better about him/herself?

Different people do things for different reasons, but I agree that for the purpose of useful discussion, there's practically no upside. I suppose that you could argue that certain behavior deserves to be responded to in kind, but if someone is misrepresenting facts or the opinion of an opponent, it's at least as effective to just call out the behavior without the insult. (I'd distinguish good-natured teasing from insults here, like my comment about Ray being happy to watch my dog for me.)

On the other hand, strong positions can be offensive to those who disagree with them. When I say something like "religion is a dangerous, pernicious force that represents and reinforces the worst aspects of human behavior" or "belief in the supernatural is irrational and wholly unsupported by any sort of legitimate evidence," I'm not trying to be insulting, but there's no non-insulting way to express that idea. Also, if you're responding to someone who is acting in an logically inconsistent, ignorant, intellectually dishonest way, there's not really a non-insulting way to characterize that behavior.

I don't post under my real name, but it's not a secret. I like a layer between my real name and an easy google search, for a number of reasons. I like being able to speak freely about things that a potential employer might take issue with. That might be my political beliefs, but it also might be about my struggles with depression or drug experimentation. I often post late at night because of insomnia, or while attending a boring but obligatory meeting at work. Several posters here have had email contact with me, and my email address is <first name>@the<last name>s.com, so I'm not hiding. I'm just making it a little less trivial to connect a random thing I say here with my name; a motivated seeker can make the connection pretty trivially, I'd imagine.
   3354. formerly dp Posted: October 21, 2012 at 08:41 AM (#4277864)
That Gallaudet story is like something out of The Onion. A black woman with a phony-baloney "diversity" job apparently believes in diversity for herself but not for others. You can't make this stuff up.


I can guess at the answer, but what makes her "diversity" job "phoney-baloney"? A quick memory refresh: the article says that her job is "chief diversity officer." What makes this title mock-worthy?

Do you disagree with the calls to have her reinstated?
   3355. BDC Posted: October 21, 2012 at 09:25 AM (#4277868)
I find the alias issue interesting, so will just offer my few cents'. Like Andy, I am easily identifiable in two clicks. (Scroll down after the second click.) I use an alias just because I liked GGC's, and think that everyone here should have an alias that puns on the name of a journeyman ballplayer.

I am a tenured academic (like Steve, I'm 50-something), and I believe that it is part of my job to express one's self on issues. In particular on sport-&-culture issues, since I do sport studies, but on politics too, because sport, culture, and literature are inseparable from politics. Like anyone else, I think my opinions are principled and fair. If my expressing them ever bothered my employer, I really am gravely mistaken about my line of work, and I should be in some other profession.

I find that posting here helps my writing and my critical thinking. Feeble rationalization, perhaps, but it helps explain why I "waste" time on BBTF while I work my 7-day-a-week professional job – but waste it almost nowhere else on the Internet. I do have a Facebook account, but I don't hang out there much, and I only post pictures of my cat or the titles of books I'm reading; FB seems like a very innocuous place to me, because I keep it that way.

That said, I think there are two principles that Internet posters should observe (and I like this group a great deal because nearly all y'all do observe them): (1) Have a thick skin; (2) Criticize ideas, not individuals. And I suppose (3) be gracious, which includes admitting error and applauding a good idea. But really (1) and (2) are all you need. My worst sin here in recent months was to make some remark about how gay-marriage opponents are bigots. I think that homophobia is indeed bigotry, but it was pointed out to me that stances on marriage rights might not inevitably entail homophobia, and my comment got parlayed by some who either oppose gay marriage or respect those who do into a personal (though not individual) attack. I'm sorry for that, and it's had an influence on my subsequent posts. In future I'll settle simply for saying that those who oppose gay marriage are deeply wrong :)

   3356. Lassus Posted: October 21, 2012 at 09:42 AM (#4277874)
...but what makes her "diversity" job "phoney-baloney"? A quick memory refresh: the article says that her job is "chief diversity officer." What makes this title mock-worthy?

Why would you even ask this question of Joe? There is absolutely no point.


In other political news, George McGovern died.
   3357. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 09:54 AM (#4277876)
I never saw anyone vote for him.
   3358. BDC Posted: October 21, 2012 at 10:19 AM (#4277884)
One of McGovern's most interesting credentials is his PhD in history from Northwestern. You could assemble a good cabinet's worth of PhD politicians, from Woodrow Wilson through McGovern to Phil Gramm and Newt Gingrich. None of them really in the American mainstream of hail-fellow-well-met baby-kissers, but they've left their mark on American politics.

McGovern's dissertation director Arthur Link was the longtime editor of the Woodrow Wilson papers, another connection in the six-degrees web of life.
   3359. formerly dp Posted: October 21, 2012 at 10:32 AM (#4277889)
Why would you even ask this question of Joe? There is absolutely no point.


Of course there is-- I'd like to see if he actually knows what her job entails, or if he just saw the word "diversity" and knee-jerk called it a "phoney-baloney" position, because he doesn't like the word. I'm betting on the latter, but I also enjoy a good surprise from time to time.
   3360. robinred Posted: October 21, 2012 at 10:41 AM (#4277893)
So what's going on?


All of the things you mentioned, as well as a few others. Social input is very different and less intense on the net than in IRL, so the immediate social cost/awkwardness of saying nasty things online to people is usually much less, in part because of the differences in face/face and online interactions, and in part due to anonymity. Also, people have widely varying sensibilities about what is "OK" to say to people whose worldviews they find wrong, silly, self-serving, abhorrent etc. Many people think that insults are justified, even necessary, in response to certain kinds of worldview statements. These threads are actually relatively civil when they are focused on horse-race politics and specific policies. But those issues often bleed into worldview, and that is when things get testy.

   3361. Jose Molina wants a nickname like ARod Posted: October 21, 2012 at 10:55 AM (#4277897)
Joe: You're a insecure loser for creating your own wikipedia and wikiquotes pages.

And, hey, NY-13021, it's not an insult cause it's true.

http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Joe_Kehoskie&oldid=451109460
http://en.wikiquote.org/w/index.php?title=Joe_Kehoskie&oldid=1343809
   3362. Jose Molina wants a nickname like ARod Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:00 AM (#4277899)
Anyway, sorry, but gonna have to report you for a violation of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Notability_(people)
   3363. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:03 AM (#4277901)
BTW, this Benghazi thing is starting to look really bad for Obama & co. NY Post headline today: "THEY WATCHED THEM DIE".

The last two Americans apparently didn't die until 6 hours into the attack, and we had a drone overhead observing the last several hours of the fighting. Meanwhile, U.S. aircraft were within about an hour's flying time, including AC-130 Spectre gunships; those are "Puff the Magic Dragon" for any of you who've seen the old John Wayne movie, "The Green Berets".

Reinforcements apparently were sent from Tripoli, and some Special Forces were moved to Italy, but no air support was sent.

If we could have gotten air support there in time but failed to act, there should be Courts Martial held. If political authorities refused permission to send air support, those individuals should be fired immediately.

Meanwhile, the alleged ring leader (Abu Khattala) moves about freely in Libya, and was interviewed by the NY Time.
   3364. spike Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:09 AM (#4277905)
this Benghazi thing is starting to look really bad for Obama & co

Man, I have heard this every day from the same 4 people since the event - seriously, you need to f**king clap harder, cause Tinkerbell is dying.
   3365. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:16 AM (#4277907)
Man, I have heard this every day from the same 4 people since the event - seriously, you need to f**king clap harder, cause Tinkerbell is dying.

IIRC, I haven't said a word on this topic. I'm simply reporting what I read in my morning paper.
   3366. spike Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:22 AM (#4277908)
And the idea that we are going to fly a gunship over a crowd composed mainly of civilians with US captives in their midst and just spray some lead...well, I guess maybe you would do it, but I can't think of anyone else. It's about as believable as "The Green Berets".

//Just what was this "air support" supposed to do?
   3367. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:26 AM (#4277909)
And the idea that we are going to fly a gunship over a crowd composed mainly of civilians with US captives in their midst and just spray some lead...well, I guess maybe you would do it, but I can't think of anyone else. It's about as believable as "The Green Berets".

If Americans are under attack? Damn right we should do it.

Those "civilians" were participating in a violent riot that was killing people; they had ceased to be civilians. I wouldn't hesitate to fire on them.

My answer would be the same if the violent rioters were Americans; e.g. the LAPD and Nat'l Guard should have fired on the crowds in the LA riots.

   3368. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:28 AM (#4277910)
Absolutes based on very little knowledge recently learned always amuses me. What was air support going to do inside a city to keep 2 Americans alive?
   3369. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:28 AM (#4277911)
//Just what was this "air support" supposed to do?

Drive the attackers back from the consulate, with their miniguns.
   3370. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:30 AM (#4277912)
Those "civilians" were participating in a violent riot that was killing people; they had ceased to be civilians. I wouldn't hesitate to fire on them.

We have yet to reach a level of technology where bullets are "smart" bullets. Not every single "civilian" in the area was a combatant and not every single bullet/rocket/missile is going to have perfect accuracy. The real world isn't a video game.

Drive the attackers back from the consulate, with their miniguns.

Yeah, that is going to end well. This wassn't trench warfare. There were no clear lines of opposing forces. The military might call things a "surgical strike" but that doesn't actually mean it is all that precise or accurate.
   3371. spike Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:30 AM (#4277913)
Those "civilians" were participating in a violent riot that was killing people. I wouldn't hesitate to fire on them.
And if we happened to hit our guys, or kill a bunch of innocent people in the surrounding streets and residences, well screw 'em. Of course you wouldn't hesitate, General Dyer. Getting the bad guys is more important to you than killing some innocent folks, and the consequences that would follow from that.
   3372. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:32 AM (#4277914)
Absolutes based on very little knowledge recently learned always amuses me. What was air support going to do inside a city to keep 2 Americans alive?

Perhaps you lack the knowledge, others of us may be better read.

The U.S. military has repeatedly shown the ability to direct artillery and air support fire within 10 meters of besieged US personnel, with no harm to the Americans.

Read up on the battle of the Ia Drang valley if you want an example. A cut off US platoon was surrounded by several battalions of NVA regulars. Their supporting artillery brought fire so close to them, and at such intensity that they did not suffer a single addt'l casualty for a full day until they were relieved.

If they could do that with 105mm howitzers firing dumb shells, what do you think they can do today with smart weapons? Or gunships that can directly observe their targets.
   3373. spike Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:33 AM (#4277915)
Drive the attackers back from the consulate, with their miniguns.

You know how I know you have no idea how they work?
   3374. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:34 AM (#4277916)
Your AC-130's with their miniguns aren't sitting there hovering above the consulate dropping down sniper fire. It's a plane moving at high speed firing thousands of rounds of lead at altitude. If you think that is accurate enough fire to do much of anything inside a city, well, I've got an anchor job on Fox News for you.
   3375. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:34 AM (#4277917)
And if we happened to hit our guys, or kill a bunch of innocent people in the surrounding streets and residences, well screw 'em. Of course you wouldn't hesitate, General Dyer. Getting the bad guys is more important to you than killing some innocent folks, and the consequences that would follow from that.

No, saving Americans is that important to me.

Those men put their lives at risk for their country. They deserved every possible exertion to save them.

   3376. spike Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:35 AM (#4277918)
Ia Drang? Good god, man, do you think Benghazi is anything like Ia Drang?

   3377. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:35 AM (#4277919)
Those "civilians" were participating in a violent riot that was killing people; they had ceased to be civilians. I wouldn't hesitate to fire on them.

My answer would be the same if the violent rioters were Americans; e.g. the LAPD and Nat'l Guard should have fired on the crowds in the LA riots.


So in your opinion, exactly when does "Thou Shalt Not Kill" come into play?
   3378. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:36 AM (#4277920)
Your AC-130's with their miniguns aren't sitting there hovering above the consulate dropping down sniper fire. It's a plane moving at high speed firing thousands of rounds of lead at altitude. If you think that is accurate enough fire to do much of anything inside a city, well, I've got an anchor job on Fox News for you.

I know exactly how they work.

They would obliterate the attacking crowd. That's the point.

Accuracy is not an issue. You want to create a block wide kill zone around the consulate.
   3379. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:37 AM (#4277921)
Ia Drang? Good god, man, do you think Benghazi is anything like Ia Drang?

No, it's easier to see your targets in a city than in triple canopy jungle.

So in your opinion, exactly when does "Thou Shalt Not Kill" come into play?

It means thou shalt not murder. Killing in self-defense, defense of others, or in a war authorized by your legal national gov't is not permitted.
   3380. spike Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:38 AM (#4277922)
They deserved every possible exertion to save them.

Even if they had to die in a hail of friendly fire.
   3381. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:39 AM (#4277923)
Read up on the battle of the Ia Drang valley if you want an example.

I can't believe you brought this up.

For starters there was friendly fire that resulted in several gruesome deaths as a result of the American lines getting napalmed. Secondly the coordination of combined arms was being done by trained professionals who had years of training and experience coordinating strikes as well as the equipment to do it properly. Despite that they still had friendly fire casualties. If you think that is a similar situation to a surprise attack on a consulate with few forces on the ground and none of them trained to do what you think needs to be done, well, i've got a Fox News anchor job for you.

Close in support can lead to friendly fire and in a chaotic situation like the one we found ourselves in during the consulate attack it is highly likely that real honest to goodness civilians would have been harmed and it is possible that the people we were trying to save would have gotten harmed as well.
   3382. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:39 AM (#4277924)
It means thou shalt not murder. Killing in self-defense, defense of others, or in a war authorized by your legal national gov't is not permitted.


Gunning down everybody in a one-block area is murder. Mass murder, in fact.
   3383. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:40 AM (#4277925)
And this from a guy claiming to be a religious person. Well, if that's what being religious means, I thank God I am not. If you truly mean what you say snapper, I think Jesus would be ashamed of you.
   3384. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:41 AM (#4277926)
They would obliterate the attacking crowd. That's the point.

Yes that is the point which is why you wouldn't use them in a city environment.
   3385. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:41 AM (#4277927)
Even if they had to die in a hail of friendly fire.

Our military is very, very good. They would be in constant communication with the consulate to determine their location and where the rounds were falling. Have you never read any military history? Fire support doesn't just blindly open up.

In any case, they wouldn't be any more dead, and, if the worst happened anyway, maybe it would make others think twice before attacking Americans.

   3386. The District Attorney Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:41 AM (#4277928)
the LAPD and Nat'l Guard should have fired on the crowds in the LA riots.
What percentage of people do you think agree with that statement?

If you think it's a low percentage, why would not ordering the analogous thing here be politically harmful to Obama?

And if you think it's a high percentage, you're incorrect.
   3387. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:43 AM (#4277929)
I had no idea the Ten Commandments had clauses. On what page does it say that if your legal national government wants you to kill your neighbor beyond the hill to take his land it is okay?
   3388. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:44 AM (#4277930)
Gunning down everybody in a one-block area is murder. Mass murder, in fact.

Everyone who is in the open, participating in a violent riot? You're crazy.

And this from a guy claiming to be a religious person. Well, if that's what being religious means, I thank God I am not. If you truly mean what you say snapper, I think Jesus would be ashamed of you.

You don't understand Christian theology. Killing in self-defense, or in defense of innocents is completely licit.

As long as you target those committing the violence, and have a reasonable chance of stopping them, you are morally in the clear.
   3389. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:45 AM (#4277931)
I had no idea the Ten Commandments had clauses. On what page does it say that if your legal national government wants you to kill your neighbor beyond the hill to take his land it is okay?

It's the way the Jews interpreted the commandment from day 1 in the Sinai, and the way Christians have interpreted it since 33 AD.

Take it up with Moses if you don't like it.
   3390. formerly dp Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:45 AM (#4277932)
Gunning down everybody in a one-block area is murder. Mass murder, in fact.


Not if the people you're killing are Muslims. Remember who you're talking to here.
   3391. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:46 AM (#4277933)
So in your opinion, exactly when does "Thou Shalt Not Kill" come into play?

It means thou shalt not murder. Killing in self-defense, defense of others, or in a war authorized by your legal national gov't is not permitted.


If firing willy-nilly from 10,000 feet in the air into a crowd of mostly unarmed civilians is not murder, then nothing is.
   3392. tshipman Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:48 AM (#4277935)
Our military is very, very good. They would be in constant communication with the consulate to determine their location and where the rounds were falling. Have you never read any military history? Fire support doesn't just blindly open up.


What consulate? The consulate had already been overrun at that point. It's pretty unclear that there was anyone left to communicate with on the ground.

In any case, they wouldn't be any more dead, and, if the worst happened anyway, maybe it would make others think twice before attacking Americans.


This is not the way the world works. Opening fire on civilians has never made people more peaceful.

***

snapper's comments regarding war are substantially out of the mainstream of Catholicism. John Paul II, whatever else you might think of him, was a global advocate for peace, and worked his whole life to end the cycle of violence.
   3393. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:48 AM (#4277936)
Friendly fire rates from WWII to Desert Storm range from between 10 to 14% of casualties. Panama got 6%.

Iraq and Afghanistan got absurdly low rates but it is widely believed that the armed forces are covering up true friendly fire incidents but even still there were friendly fire deaths in both campaigns. Incidents of friendly fire are likely to result when different units/branches work in the same area of operation which in case you hadn't noticed is the situation the armed forces would have found themselves in if they had decided to send an AC-130 into a city to fire on a confusing mess of a situation.
   3394. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:48 AM (#4277937)
What percentage of people do you think agree with that statement?

If you think it's a low percentage, why would not ordering the analogous thing here be politically harmful to Obama?

And if you think it's a high percentage, you're incorrect.


So, the police were right in simply running away and allowing riots that lead to over 100 deaths? If they had shot 2 or 3 people at the beginning, they would have saved scores of lives later.

You're crazy. If Obama had ordered immediate support that saved those Americans it would have been a HUGE boost for him.
   3395. spike Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:48 AM (#4277938)
Our military is very, very good. They would be in constant communication with the consulate to determine their location and where the rounds were falling. Have you never read any military history?

Plenty. And practical experience too, but we'll pass that. You have no idea how these weapons systems work.

In any case, they wouldn't be any more dead, and, if the worst happened anyway, maybe it would make others think twice before attacking Americans.

And there it is. When in doubt, the thing to do is kill a few more people. Terror killings as a method of advancing foreign policy have had decidedly mixed results, at best, from India, Vietnam, Russia, Rome, Iraq, Afghanistan, or wherever.
   3396. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:49 AM (#4277939)
It's the way the Jews interpreted the commandment from day 1 in the Sinai, and the way Christians have interpreted it since 33 AD.

Take it up with Moses if you don't like it.


Killing is wrong unless it gets us something we want. Got it.
   3397. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:50 AM (#4277940)
If firing willy-nilly from 10,000 feet in the air into a crowd of mostly unarmed civilians is not murder, then nothing is.

They wouldn't fire "willy-nilly", I'm not talking B-52 strikes.

The gunships could be as low as hundreds of meters above the ground, and can direct fire very precisely.

But, an unarmed civilian that joins an armed mob dispensing violence is a combatant.
   3398. McCoy Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:50 AM (#4277941)
snapper's comments regarding war are substantially out of the mainstream of Catholicism.

Hell, they are substantially out of touch with reality.

Anyone who thinks you can send an AC-130 into a city as "air support" simply doesn't know what he is talking about and it pains me to say that since Snapper is my Russian ally.
   3399. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:51 AM (#4277942)
Everyone who is in the open, participating in a violent riot? You're crazy.


If the LAPD had, as you suggest, fired into the crowds at the LA riots, they absolutely would have been committing murder. You don't get to kill people just because they're rioting. But I guess that's more of a legal principle than a religious one, since I can't tell you how to interpret your holy text.
   3400. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: October 21, 2012 at 11:53 AM (#4277944)
You don't understand Christian theology. Killing in self-defense, or in defense of innocents is completely licit.


Huh. 4 years of Catholic High School, and I totally missed the part where they explained that it is OK to kill lots of unarmed civilians as long as it helps you get the bad guy. I must have been sick that day.
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