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I don't often report on off site interaction with RWNJs. I've done a little lately as it seems to have reached a new peak, or nadir I suppose would be a more appropriate word, for truly bewildering stupidity and hate. I hope this is kosher. If not, I'm sure someone will let me know. There is a larger reason for posting this tale of futility of course.

At the end of a very long and typically unproductive Facebook 'conversation' during which all I did was ask a simple question over and over I received the response quoted below. (no scrolling down! spoilers! you must read the setup first.)

The long thread was in response a the posting of the Carl Sagan clip where he warns of 'charlatans, religious or political' taking advantage of anti-science attitudes to take and abuse power.

Ironically the Upworthy posting of the clip had been shared by an Ayn Rand worshiping former roommate of mine calling him 'prophetic' about a charlatan coming along.
http://www.upworthy.com/...

Knowing he thought Ayn Rand and her pseudo-science (which is exactly the kind of thing Sagan is warning about) so brilliant and intelligent and finding his posting the clip both funny and outrageously ironic (and knowing already the answer) I asked who he thought the 'charlatan' was. He never answered his own post.

However, one friend of his jumped in and repeatedly told me to 'fuck off' as I repeatedly asked him to tell me who he thought it was. He also repeatedly told others who showed up not to talk to me, 'he's one of them.' He went from that level of 'civility' to saying things like 'I'm too busy right now giving your old lady anal to answer. This is a man of my own age, 60 years old. A successful business man according to his Facebook page.

It was unlike any other RW responses I ever experienced. It took on a surreal quality, as it continued on and on. The stonewalling was a new and perplexing phenomenon, not the curses and hatred although that went to new levels of absurdity.

They are usually more than eager to regurgitate the RW talking points.

Please realize I'd said nothing at all yet of my own views. Nor attacked any of them or their views which they hadn't dared share yet.

Finally one seemingly nice and reasonable man was at least willing to talk, while the friend I mentioned before literally 'begged' him not to engage with me.

He volunteered somewhat proudly, that the 'charlatan' was, obviously, and as I already knew they'd say, Barack Obama.

Then he asked me who I thought 'he' was.

I thanked him for finally offering his answer, and answered with a list of possibilities, suggesting the usual suspects.

Ted Cruz? Sarah Palin? Jim Inhofe? Louie Gohmert? Paul Ryan? The Koch Brothers? So many to choose from...Rush Limbaugh, Hannity, O'Reilly, Bryan Fischer, James Dobson? so many charlatans conning the uneducated and uninformed...

Of all of them IMHO Limbaugh would be the biggest, most powerful, most blatant, and most dangerous, he has the biggest following and tells the most outrageous lies, and they all believe him without question or 'healthy skepticism.' Actually so proud of their knee-jerk unquestioning acceptance of his pronouncements that they call themselves 'ditto-heads.' Even the political and religious charlatans mentioned have to pay homage to him and can't cross him without paying a stiff price.

The so called "Religious Right" itself is a very clear example of what Sagan is talking about. A mass of people refusing any scientific knowledge or facts, without any skepticism at all, in fact denigrating it, instead elevating 'faith' and 'beliefs' above critical thinking or even observation of quantifiable reality, and relying solely on their leaders guidance to tell them how to vote. A recipe for disaster in a 'free' country.

That is the entire and full extent of my answer or 'rant.'

His responses:

(to the others in the thread who'd I'd blocked after the abuse reached intolerable levels)

Stan was off the charts. I read his rants and really didn't know half of what he was ranting about. Guys like that throw around many words to try to impress the reader. ZZZZZZ!
and then to me:
Stan, you might be a nice guy but I do not intend on trying to read your rants to figure out your beliefs and forecasts unless you condense it into a short sentence or two without all the fluff.
How do you respond to that? To someone basically admitting to you that they are too stupid, too slow and dim-witted, and too incurious to bother to try and figure out what you said?

Can I make it simpler? Am I too pointy headed to communicate at his level? I don't know. I'm just stunned. Just sitting here stunned and feeling hopeless once again.

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  •  Tip Jar (408+ / 0-)
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    no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

    by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:32:44 AM PST

    •  An impossible quest .... (158+ / 0-)
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      I work in IT ... and am often in close touch with our field Sales organization. Lot of successful older white men. Good people for most part, intelligent, capable and hardworking.

      Rational, except when it comes to Obama.

      After years of arguments and strained friendships, I've given up.

      As an immigrant from India, I've seen this before with the Brahmin and upper caste community back home as they see the middle and lower castes become electorally and politically resurgent. They cannot see a Dalit in a position of respect or power without suspecting that he is some kind of undeserving fraud that snuck in by virtue of his minority status, displacing one of their deserving own.

      Similarly I see my White Male colleagues here whose identity is so invested in their race and unearned privilege. The realization that "their" America is slipping away makes them so desperate that they become Preppers or Ditto-heads or Millenarian Doomsdayers or gun-toting Separatists or garrulous Tea Partiers or ODS-ridden cranks  ...

      I can only feel pity. Their race is dying and they are the last of their kind.

      •  Now *that* is class warfare! (31+ / 0-)

        After all, I am in field sales in the tech industry and I'm as liberal as can be.  You are waging class warfare!
        .....
        ....
        ..
        .

        Can I help? ;)

        •  Wishing you happy quota attainment .. (11+ / 0-)

          And thanks for sharing the bounty with the charities of your choice!

        •  Me too! Bronxist sounds like me hitting my head (6+ / 0-)

          coping with a bunch of white Midwesterners (my colleagues, although most of the time we are remote but meet once a year) who have a visceral hatred of Obama for no good reason.

          In all other ways, they are friendly, collegial and capable.

          I scratch my (bruised) head.

          In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. - George Orwell, 1984

          by Ammo Hauler on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:15:45 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Er no (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Old Sailor

          That was reality. I'm a White professional, as Euro-American as they come.  English-American actually, we've been here since the War with the Dutch.  I see the attitude he is describing in a certain part of our own infrastructure team.  I'm one of the only professionals that will engage them - and they kind of like me for that, but they cannot tolerate my positions and they don't understand how I can hold those positions. I've actually been told (this is almost word for word) "Don't you get it, its us versus them, you are white, your kids are the ones that will suffer if they win."  I've actually been told variations on that by MORE than one of the people I'm discussing.  I think his analysis is brilliant actually, and not class based at all, it reflects the same reality I see.

      •  The upper caste in India (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        irishwitch, Hoghead99

        Have lots of white genetics in them. I remember reading about that recently. That means that they are really very close to the same as the whites you come in contact with in your work.



        Women create the entire labor force.
        ---------------------------------------------
        Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

        by splashy on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 07:36:17 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Its not genetic ... (14+ / 0-)

          Non-white people can be venal without any help, thank you!

          •  LOL. (0+ / 0-)

            Wow. That is a good thing to know.

            I had become truly afraid it that the market on bigotry, misogyny, and intolerance had been cornered entirely by old rich white people.

            What a relief.   :-)

            •  I realize are probably being sarcastic (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dvalkure, OldDragon

              but I for one, being an old white male am becoming quite tired of the demonization of us by our side, aka Liberals.

              I think I even wrote a diary on it. There are plenty of us who are intelligent, empathetic, open-minded Liberals and proud of it!

              rich greedy assholes might better IMHO. its a small and tight knit group. they roam free on Wall St. and in certain enclaves in communities around the country. they can usually be located by the electric gates and security guards to keep out the likes of you. LOL.

              its not even all rich, most I've know are really good people and quite Liberal and use their wealth to better society as much as they can. certainly not just white, or old, or even male, its just a small subset (who happen usually to be all those things) with enough power and money and ego to cause shit for all of us.

              stating the obvious...LOL

              no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

              by srfRantz on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 06:57:23 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I understand exactly how you feel. (3+ / 0-)

                As a Christian person, in particular, on this website, One must have a very thick skin in order to survive the toxic snark leveled against us. As a woman, I have had to live with discrimination all my life.

                So, on behalf of all of us who have endured every flavor of discrimination for no good reason that we could perceive, I welcome you to the sensation. It sucks, doesn't it?

                I will now give you the answer that I have received from white men all my life, for bringing up the topic. Ready?

                You are just being hysterical. I was joking. You should grow a thicker skin.

                Welcome to the party. Now you are equal.

                •  Indeed (6+ / 0-)

                  I think I love you, Azubia.  Thank you for making my day.

                •  At the Party (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  CA wildwoman

                  You are right on, Parent

                •  You're correct, and I've changed... (9+ / 0-)

                  The problem is the conservatives/Republicans have gone a long way to usurping and tainting the "Christian" brand.  That usurpation causes people to associate "Christianity" with "conservative" and "Republican".  Not because of all the Christians, but because of the Republican Party working to usurp the "Christian" brand.  It is unfair to progressive/liberal Christians, but the underlying motivator is caused by the Republican Party.

                  I have recognized this fact, and out of respect/support for progressive/liberal Christians, I now attempt to use "right wing Christians".

                  Bigger Corporations = Smaller Individuals

                  by Smeagel4T on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:02:16 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Thank you for posting this TRUTH !! (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    hooper

                    Abusers always make it nasty for everyone else & when they try to hide in a 'crowd' they give the whole group a bad name.

                    It's too bad that human pattern recognition makes it so easy for us to generalize & unfairly paint the good along with the bad with the same 'unsafe' label. It is a survival skill with pros & cons.

                    Something that doesn't make good sense, makes bad sense. That means someone is being deliberately hurtful & selfish. Look for motives behind actions & words.

                    by CA wildwoman on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:40:21 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  The worst part is in my opinion, that their God (0+ / 0-)

                    hates racists, and I'm going right back to the exodus from Egypt with that statement.
                    Moses' wife was a Cushite in current terms that would be Ethiopian and thus black.

                    Numbers 12:1,9-15 Then Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because of the Cushite woman whom he had married (for he had married a Cushite woman).

                    So the anger of the LORD burned against them and He departed. But when the cloud had withdrawn from over the tent, behold, Miriam was leprous, as white as snow. As Aaron turned toward Miriam, behold, she was leprous.

                    Then Aaron said to Moses, “Oh, my lord, I beg you, do not account this sin to us, in which we have acted foolishly and in which we have sinned. “Oh, do not let her be like one dead, whose flesh is half eaten away when he comes from his mother’s womb!”

                    Moses cried out to the LORD, saying, “O God, heal her, I pray!”

                    But the LORD said to Moses, “If her father had but spit in her face, would she not bear her shame for seven days? Let her be shut up for seven days outside the camp, and afterward she may be received again.”

                    So Miriam was shut up outside the camp for seven days, and the people did not move on until Miriam was received again.

                    Still bigotry has no race requirement, you get it from all aspects of society. I can't begin to imagine how even lower caste Indians would react if one of the Dalit got into a position of power. It really couldn't be pretty looking at history. Though it won't make you feel better Bronxist in knowing that such a group existed in many societies, and still does in some others than just India.
                  •  Yep. It's the religious conservatives (0+ / 0-)

                    Check the history of the Moody Biblical Institute of Chicago. It was created in the late 19th century in reaction to the application of historical textual analysis to the books of the bible.

                    The institute developed the dogma of Biblical Inerrancy in response to the practice of analyzing the text to see who actually wrote the books of the bible. (It wasn't Mathew, Mark, Luke or John.) That was the only way they could intellectually justify the concept of the virgin birth, the resurrection of Christ, or creationism. The whole package became known as fundamentalism. Karen Armstrong described the process in The Battle for God.

                    Then the fundamentalists were dragged into the Republican Party at the same time the Southern Conservatives were switching from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party. Reagan took advantage of the religious fundamentalists.

                    This was also about the same time that the Southern Baptists were fighting over who was moderate and who was conservative in a religious sense.

                    I prefer the term "Xtianists" when writing in recognition that the fundamentalists have removed Christ from their version of Christianity. It's easier to write than "right wing christians."

                    The US Supreme Court has by its actions and rhetoric has ceased to be legitimate. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot - over

                    by Rick B on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 05:13:42 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  Thanks! (0+ / 0-)

                    With the advent of Pope Francis I find that identifying as Catholic doesn't provoke the ire it used to ;).  Too bad Jim Wallis can't become some kind of Evangelical Pope!

                  •  Speak up! (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Old Sailor

                    This post is not aimed at Parent alone, but all those saying, "not me".  

                    Parent, where are your voices?  When I was growing up, there was no doubt that the Christians stood for equality, justice, helping the downtrodden, etc., and against racism, bigotry, subjection, etc.  Their voices and their actions showed it.  What happened?  Take your religion back.  I'm an atheist but I love the myth of Christ and, details aside, think the overall message would be a good guide for how we should act.

                    To the various whites, of which I am one, that are saying, "not me", "it's a small group of rich guys", etc.  Small groups don't win elections.  Somehow, whether it's race, god, guns, gays, etc., the party that serves the rich is able to peel off voters that, according to their station in life, have no business voting that way.  It may not be "you", but it's probably most of the people that you know.  Again, you need to stand up.  This includes me.

                    The bottom line, regarding this story, is that the election of a black president has really drawn a clear line.  There are groups of people I've associated with and never spoke about political/social issues.  I had no idea how some of them felt about the whole black/white dynamic.  Not anymore.  

                    •  perhaps the problem is the (0+ / 0-)

                      acceptance that there is one, singular "Christian brand".

                      I doubt very seriously if that was ever true in the history of the religion.  Certainly not true today.

                      I don't know when you grew up, but there have probably always been doubts about what Christians stood for, since never have they stood united for anything.  What they proclaim to stand for might be the same thing, but proclamations are not always the essence.

                      Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

                      Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

                      by a gilas girl on Tue Dec 31, 2013 at 11:44:14 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

              •  My bumper sticker since July '12 has been (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                gfv6800, CA wildwoman

                Another Angry White Man For The President!

                The generalization persists, justly, because so many old white men persist in their douchebaggery. We numerous exceptions to the generalization need to keep raising our hands with a smile. Those old boys will be gone and never come back. We will go on forever.

                To My Colonoscopist

                I think that I shall never see
                so far up you as you up me.

                by shieldvulf on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:05:05 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Subset versus superset... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                CA wildwoman

                As an somewhat old white male, I recognize the problem is caused by the Tea Partiers being made up of largely old white males.  So it's a pretty typical mistake of applying to the superset a trait of a subset that is (largely) contained within the superset.

                Bigger Corporations = Smaller Individuals

                by Smeagel4T on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:06:35 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  misunderstanding (0+ / 0-)

                I think you've taken offense out of misunderstanding.No one on this site would characterize any and all older white males as neanderthals. I'm a sixty something white male and I'm well aware of the far right wings preponderance of older white males. The fact that tea party rally video footage attests to the obvious dominance of our demographic shouldn't be taken personally. I'm sure that the more reasoned liberal perspective takes our existence for granted even if it isn't always expressed.

              •  Exactly right (0+ / 0-)

                This kind of divisive language about something like gender or ethnicity that one is born into and cannot control is absolutely anathema to everything we as liberals and progressives should stand for.

                You can CHOOSE your religion, political party and / or philosophy, but you can't change the color or gender you're born and nobody asks us which we might prefer. We're born this way and stuck with it just like everyone else.

                I was born a (mostly) white male, and there's fuckall I can do about it. Given a choice, personally, I'd be an asian lesbian (maybe that's TMI, I dunno) but I have to make do with what the Goddess gave me. I'm sick of people making me out to be their enemy when all I want is the kind of society I fell in love with from the day I first watched Star Trek.

                Starfleet doesn't use money, it has more than enough resources for everyone and actually distributes them fairly. They don't care what race you are, not even if that race is non-human. If you're a sentient being, you're welcome. And while there is leadership, there isn't a strict hierarchy. Sure, Kirk is the Captain but that's because he's good at it and trained for it. You think McCoy wants that chair? Hell no. He went to school to be a Doctor, a healer, because that's his talent and his passion. Scotty resents every minute he's away from his beloved engine room, and Spock never smiles but he's also never happier than he is at his science station doing what he does best.

                That's my ideal society. Everyone doing what they do best and love the most, and getting the rewards and recognition they deserve for it. No discrimination based on class, race, gender, anything. Just people. Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations.

                That is what I want.

                "Is there anybody listening? Is there anyone who sees what's going on? Read between the lines, criticize the words they're selling. Think for yourself, and feel the walls become sand beneath your feet." --Geoff Tate, Queensryche

                by DarthMeow504 on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 08:20:06 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  In this day and age, maybe. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dvalkure, OldDragon

              But try looking at other places at other times.

              Such widespread bigotry usually follows the spread of empires or is held by the winners of wars.  The Chinese of their imperial period were pretty darn convinced that the rest of the world was just a bunch of barbarians.  Ditto the imperial Japanese.

              The Romans thought everyone who wasn't a Roman was, de facto, an inferior human being.

              The Egyptians tended to sneer at everyone who wasn't Egyptian.

              Ditto the Aztecs and Mayans.

              In the 18th and 19th centuries, Europe developed the weaponry and methods of transport that let them travel all over the world in the biggest orgy of land-grabbing of all time.  Therefore, the idea of the white man's superiority.

              All over the world, all throughout history,  the powerful tend to not only enslave and exploit the less powerful, they tended to justify their actions by claiming that the conquered are inferior or even sub-human. It's a way to "justify" the land-grabbing and enslaving.

              Freedom has two enemies: Those who want to control everyone around them...and those who feel no need to control themselves.

              by Sirenus on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 07:10:26 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  Well.............. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              CA wildwoman

              .....knowing of their BLOODY HISTORY, I'm beginning to see a pattern.....!!  : D

          •  wow (0+ / 0-)

            really and wow again for the word venal.

            I would place my faith and hope in the mercy of Christ, not in the judgment of Christians,” Wendell Berry.

            by Larin on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 07:20:51 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Right. It's unconscious, not genetic (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            janetsal

            Read the article on the unconscious mind in the January 2014 Scientific American for an explanation of how the unconscious mind makes most of a person's decisions rapidly and without evaluation. It's a process that is  outside off their awareness.

            That's why a person can make decisions that others recognize as clearly racist, but the individual making the decision firmly believes that they are not racist. The same is true for class-based decisions.

            Those unconscious decisions are made based on things each person learns from those around them, beginning with language. Since I grew up white in a legally segregated Southern state, I have a number of those automatic decisions built in. I have to evaluate every decision I make that relates to someone who is African American carefully, and it takes longer. It's never unlearned, it always has to be taken into account by me. That is going to be true for all white southerners over roughly age 40 and to a lesser extent for those younger depending on the culture they grew up in.  

            The US Supreme Court has by its actions and rhetoric has ceased to be legitimate. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot - over

            by Rick B on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:44:18 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Well, if it's any comfort (7+ / 0-)

        I'm in information security, migrating there from working my way up from helpdesk to desktop service to server and domain administration, as well as some network dalliances.

        I'm also white, well, as white as a Sicilian-American can be. I'm gun toting only when at a firearms competition (precision shooting only, high volume firers are escorted off of the property), hunting or cleaning the things. The rest of the time, I let the firearms safes "tote" them nowhere for me.  ;)

        I also believe firmly in working for a living. If I'm being paid to do something, I do it. I help coworkers. I even help the rest of the IT staff if they have a thorny technical problem.

        I'm liberal in some ways, conservative in others, overall, I'm quite middle of the road. A son of Sicilian immigrants on my father's side, a Son of the American Revolution from my mother's side.

        I've also traveled extensively, courtesy of my previous military career, meeting many people from many, many cultures all over this small planet of ours.
        I've learned a few things over the handful of decades I've lived.
        First, people are people, no matter where you find them. We all have the same emotions, the same biology, we're overall the same. What drives behavior is both biological and cultural, one does not do that which one's culture prohibits, lest ones lot in life suffer significantly at best, end up in prison or executed at worst.
        Second, people dislike change. I honestly think that is genetic as well, as change in primitive times frequently was a lethal experience. Still, regardless of its root, change is resisted. A minority will embrace change, but those are those who most quickly adapt to change and those do move forward when their compatriots permit them. When their compatriots don't, the adaptable one ends up facing personal disaster, such as getting nailed onto lumber.
        Finally, a side-effect of that resistance to change is a fixed view, anything that conflicts with that view tends to be attacked.
        See that nailed onto lumber bit.

        Or more simply, to steal from an author of some rather interesting fantasy books, “People are stupid. They will believe a lie because they want to believe it's true, or because they are afraid it might be true.”
        I say interesting, as the author self-identifies as Libertarian, but his books end up supporting a far from Libertarian world view.

        •  Techies are different ... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Imanamcan, CA wildwoman, Rick B

          It's curious but I've seen a difference between the techie white guys (generally cool) and salesie white guys (generally conservative). Always exceptions of course ... ;)

          •  Indeed (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            tubaguy

            As one of the liberal technicians I can attest to working with plenty of conservative techs and liberal sales staff conversely. There's no hard rule but in fairness there definitely is normally a liberal bent to the tech staff yes (having an open mind can be all that keeps you sane when you see computers come in full of weird stuff like talcum powder and wax), while sales tends to promote conservative practices as playing it safe tends to beat trying new approaches when you have a quota to meet.

        •  Private versus personal... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CA wildwoman, rabrock

          My observation is that people are largely "conservative" (always exceptions) toward their own private lives, and the variation comes in their approach to others and society.  Therefore "conservatives" are really those who have a "conservative" approach to society -- which really means fear of change and that anyone who isn't just like them is a threat to society.  "Liberals" are really those who have a "liberal" approach to society -- which really means significantly less fear of change (everyone has some) and that diversity is a good and interesting thing rather than a threat to society.

          This is where I think "conservative versus liberal" polling can be skewed.  If the polling question leads a person towards thinking more-than-not about their personal lives, the polling will be skewed toward "conservative".  If the polling question leads a person toward thinking more-than-not about their view toward society, then a better political trend results.

          Note also how change comes about.  Changes ultimately become solidified in society when conservatives start objecting to making changes to them.  The least confrontational way to bring about change is to carefully and constantly expose conservatives to the change so that they become less and less afraid of it.  Let's face it, that's how gay marriage finally came about.  It wasn't really through some major move in the political realm.  It was from gays "coming out" and allowing others in society to become more and more accustomed to them, and slowly accepting that they are not a threat.

          Bigger Corporations = Smaller Individuals

          by Smeagel4T on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:19:43 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  People who want change are the ones screwed by (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tubaguy

          the existing status quo.

          Something that doesn't make good sense, makes bad sense. That means someone is being deliberately hurtful & selfish. Look for motives behind actions & words.

          by CA wildwoman on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:47:10 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Question (0+ / 0-)

          We know that not everyone can work, due to health or circumstances, and that there simply aren't jobs for all who need one. What should we do with them? Millions of low wage workers are a single job loss from losing everything, with no way back up. How do you get a job without a home address, phone, bus fare? Our jails and prisons are already over-full. We've shipped out the bulk of our factory jobs since the 1980s. So, what should we do these, our "surplus population"?

      •  No one is guaranteed a job for any reason (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bronxist, rabrock

        Positions of trust, authority, work, and so forth must be merited on clear critical thinking.  It is irrelevant if you have a god(s) or are without god, the same as if you heterosexual, homosexual or other sexual, are fat or thin, etc.  No one has the right of unearned privilege as can be seen in the mental malaise of Mitt Romney and Bain Capital, and a caste system must be discharged before reality can take hold and make people literate contributing members of the world community.

      •  Not race, but...... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CA wildwoman

        class is what I hope you mean. Cause I'm sure I'm not the only white liberal in the states.

      •  Isn't aryan a description associated... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CA wildwoman, 2dot

        ..with people of Northern India (the land of the Arya)?

        Bronxist is spot on.  No amount of logic or pleasant discursiveness can dislodge this opinion.  Obviously their welt anschauen has been dislodged.

        Sadly, rather than discuss the pro's and con's of policies and programs the discussion is reduced to ad hominem hate bites.

        The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected.

        by Agent Orange on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 02:36:23 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Aryans came from Asia outside of India (0+ / 0-)

          They are said to come from an area that includes modern day Iran and Afghanistan. The very name of the country "Iran" comes from "Aryan"... but the joke on them is that the early Aryans probably came from elsewhere originally.... most research indicates Eastern Turkey With the Caucasus mountains nearby... and diffused into Persia/Iran and Afghanistan and later India not to mention into Europe and Asia too (the Afghan Airlines is or was named "Ariana"... since they identify with Aryans..)

          Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

          by IreGyre on Tue Dec 31, 2013 at 03:18:44 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  They aren't nice (4+ / 0-)

        Your comments are so spot on for the most part. However, i am afraid you err when you say they are 'nice.' They are not nice. Under their thin veneer of socialization, they are bullies and thugs. They have learned to exhibit proper social behaviour in their own self-interest. The sooner they become extinct, the betterrrrrrrrrr

        •  ^^^^^^ This is spot on !! ^^^^^^ (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rabrock, DarthMeow504, Old Sailor

          Really nice people don't even think about saying & doing what bigots, racists, misogynists & assholes do when they think they can get away with it - nasty abusive people live in a universe of hate of their own making.
          I pity their spirits, but want them to stay far away from me - I do not want the company of Misery !!

          Something that doesn't make good sense, makes bad sense. That means someone is being deliberately hurtful & selfish. Look for motives behind actions & words.

          by CA wildwoman on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:53:23 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  That's how frightened people (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rabrock

          in positions of power tend to behave when they feel threatened.

          The US Supreme Court has by its actions and rhetoric has ceased to be legitimate. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot - over

          by Rick B on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 05:22:28 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Excellent! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CA wildwoman, rabrock

        That is exactly right.

      •  Well said! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CA wildwoman, rabrock

        I'll never understand it.....!!  I've not always agreed with the president....but I sure as hell would not tolerate any racist, or, hateful disrespect from somebody directed toward him..!

      •  perspective is everything (4+ / 0-)

        I agree. I've said since Obama was elected that it signaled the death throes of old white man rule, and they would become like wounded animals, attacking and snarling and scratching like never before.  and here we are. They know they have lost control forever, but they would rather die shaking their fists in the air, clutching a gun and bible, then admit their defeat like the gentleman Gen. Lee.

        Downton Abby popularity at this point in the arc is certainly timely and telling.

        OWS, totally ignored by the white corporate media succeeded beyond their own dreams by changing the national dialog.  America may not be ready for it's own "spring" but dinner table conversations have been rocked across the country.

        Pope Francis is another thorn in their side. His tenure will prove interesting.

        It takes someone from outside the country who only read about American history to point out the hypocrisy and ignorance.

        •  I don't know. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rabrock

          I've got plenty of American friends that have pointed out the failings in the "American way" and the historical hypocrisy and ignorance that continues to this day. However I'll also note they're frequently ignored and/or belittled like Stan because they're "librul liars".
          God knows I face enough of that crap myself, and my personal belief's rules are pretty damn simple, don't lie and keep my word. Guess how hot I get under the collar at times copping accusations of lying for actually doing a bit of research and stating the facts from my interpretation of the data...

          This Pope is surprising me, he'd manage to pretend to be a conservative pretty well for so long, but his viewpoint is very befitting of a "vicar of Christ". I don't hold high hopes for the Catholic church becoming a better representative of their stated beliefs any time soon, but Francis is on the right path towards a more Christian attitude in the Papacy and that's a good start.

      •  My thoughts X actly (0+ / 0-)

        They are a dying breed ... its hard to be compassionate toward them especially when you realize how hard certain parties are working to ensure they don't die out - mainly by starving the educational system.

      •  Who hates whom most? (0+ / 0-)

        What race? You hate all white men. My father was one of those, and he wasn't privileged, other than the part about men (any color) earning more than women (any color) for the same type of work. This is an equal opportunity country when it comes to hate. The more economically insecure people become, the more they blame (fill in the blank). The US is intensely class-based, so we honor the rich of all races, despise and brutalize the poor of all races. I understand your prejudice. I tend to feel the same way toward rich people, even though logic tells me that they aren't all the same.

      •  Wait a minute (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        rabrock

        As an older white female married to an older white male, I'd ask that you not generalize about people of a certain age, skin color, or income bracket.  We are staunch liberals, as are most all the people we know in our color, age, and economic group.

        I tend to have the most political conflict with people who are: male, younger than me, poorly educated, "right fighters".   The more misinformed they are, the more strongly they insist they are right....often in error, but never in doubt.

      •  I'm very late (0+ / 0-)

        with my reply but can only hope you are correct in saying "Their race is dying and they are the last of their kind".

    •  Therein lies the problem, right? Stan likes to (31+ / 0-)

      read, the schmuck he was chatting with on Facebook doesn't.

      Reading can open many doors, not reading will definitely keep many shut.

      And besides, one has to open their eyes to read.


      "We must make our choice. We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." - Louis Brandies

      by Pescadero Bill on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:43:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Obviously, Stan has evolved (8+ / 0-)

        ...beyond monosyllabic grunts and word salad, so it's understandable his rant went whooshing right over the heads of the RWNJ readers.

        Stan, you should have simply responded, "I don't speak stupid" and shut down your Facebook page.  You could always start it up again later.

        Seriously, is that why Rush Limbaugh has such a great following?  His gargling monologues tickle the lizard brains of his listeners?

      •  I think that's the crux of the problem. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Hoghead99, kcc, OldDragon, Pescadero Bill

        I'm on FB and I when I do share something, it's usually articles that I've read that take the time to explain an issue rather than just spout pithy slogans. The occasional right wing crap that a few of my friends post really amount to just "liking" some captioned photo with a one-liner attached.  I read those and just shake my head because those one liners take a complicated story and boil it down to something that amounts to nothing.

        Frustrating to say the least.

        •  Ronny Reagan & his 3x5 cards set their standard (0+ / 0-)

          of discussion a long time ago.

          The commercial Media doesn't help, with all the info-tainment & smoke & mirrors infiltrating what used to be news programs.

          I get more real news in 20 minutes reading on dKos than any 30-60 minute 'news' programs on commercial stations.
          PBS does the next best job, as it doesn't do celebrity fluff.

          Something that doesn't make good sense, makes bad sense. That means someone is being deliberately hurtful & selfish. Look for motives behind actions & words.

          by CA wildwoman on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 05:01:58 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Just posted an interesting photo on Instagram!! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ntsinback, CA wildwoman

        Goes perfectly with this topic!

        http://instagram.com/...

        "Forget it, Jake! It's Chinatown!"

        by smoothjazzandmore on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 02:01:11 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Some "fights" .... (0+ / 0-)

      it is just best to walk away from.  What may start off as the "good fight" can disintegrate into soul robbing idiocy in a matter of moments.  You waste your "breath" trying.

      If we want peace, why do we give weapons and call it "aid"?

      by gdwtch52 on Tue Dec 31, 2013 at 10:29:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Kudos for wading into the battle, but I doubt (61+ / 0-)

    you'll get many useful answers here. Most comments I see on this type of thread fall into two camps:

    - don't waste your time arguing with RWNJs (sometimes I agree with that, but I'm not going to tell anyone who to spend their online time. Although I do encourage the wisdom of picking one's battles).

    - Facebook sucks - usually, loudly proclaimed by someone who doesn't use FB. (as if no other site in the world has comments like these)

    Thx for giving us a look into where their thought processes are going. It's not a pretty sight, is it?

    I don't love writing, but I love having written ~ Dorothy Parker // Visit my Handmade Gallery on Zibbet

    by jan4insight on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:45:07 AM PST

    •  This actually illustrates (58+ / 0-)

      why we need to be on Facebook, and Twitter, and other forms of social media -- we need to try and reach people where they are. Sure, we won't change the minds of every person, but if even one person reads what we write and starts to think about their own preconceptions, well, that's a start.

      There's only one rule that I know of, babies -- goddammit, you've got to be kind. -- Kurt Vonnegut

      by Cali Scribe on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:15:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  That reminds me of one Facebook conversation I had (11+ / 0-)

        I had said that I hadn't signed up for health insurance because my boss forgot to ask of I wanted it. A few months later, I wound up in the hospital and the bills drained my bank account.

        A friend of the friend whose comment I answered told me that my misfortune was my own responsibility, but the weird thing is, he would not call me a loser.

        Ultimately, I told him to "turn off the smarm, I can see right through you."

        I should have asked the guy what value he was upholding when he refused to use the L word, and how that value was upheld when his attitude, though unspoken, was perfectly obvious.

        Freedom's just another word for not enough to eat. --Paul Krugman's characterization of conservative attitudes.

        by Judge Moonbox on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:55:26 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly (6+ / 0-)

        Since we're drowned out by the brainwashing drone from tv and radio, the internet is our only way to save our democracy.

      •  We won't change the minds of the RWNJs (34+ / 0-)

        We may help their friends, relatives, and associates feel more supported in standing up to the WRNJ's bull. THAT is where our power lies on social media. Forget the loudmouths, it's the silent bystanders we're trying to reach. Thus, always do your best to be calm, clear, and concise.

        There have been a number of times I've received private messages from people after they've witnessed an exchange, thanking me for speaking out, because they couldn't personally (for either personal or business reasons).

        People gain hope from seeing that there are others who think the same way. If we let the bullies dominate the conversation unchallenged, we are allowing others to believe they are alone.

        •  This is very important. Respond to the loudmouths (15+ / 0-)

          but understand that it's the bystanders you're trying to reach.  Stay calm and clear for the sake of the bystanders.

          --------------------- “These are troubling times. Corporation are treated like people. People are treated like things. …And if we ever needed to vote, we sure do need to vote now.” -- Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

          by Fiona West on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 07:36:43 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Their children and grandchildren (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ahianne

          most likely. Sometimes nieces and nephews. It just doesn't take with the young the way it used to do before the Internet and diversity on TV.

          Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

          by Mokurai on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:23:02 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  ex (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          emyrphe, CA wildwoman

          ACTLY. Recently I posted that I was sick or all the virulent hatred aimed at our President and that he was duly elected and that it was not only unpatriotic but made Americans look bad to be so hateful toward their president. If you don' like him, support your candidate. Until today the noise on my Facebook died down considerably. I don't think I was unfriended much. Several people sent private PMs saying they were sick of it too.  I live in a conservative small town. I have a public Facebook because I use it primarily for business. I was worried it might affect business but it didn't.  There is a limit to how far I will push and I save the big pen for the day when I really need to defend something or someone. I think the ugliness of Rush and the Duck guys is even getting to the right. I know many women who are just to the point of throwing up. They aren't going to change their core values, but they will change their men, if you get my drift.

        •  Definitely, and sometimes you make a friend (0+ / 0-)

          A few of the people on my FL on FB are people who were at my back going to war with other people over the crap they post (including in my case a few people that seem to live on FB's agitators list), heck I chewed over someone that supports that ass Arpaio just last night because they posted something about how tough he is on inmates, without all the facts (my first GF [12 years ago now] lived in Yuma so I'm no stranger to Sheriff Joe's BS), add the fact history demonstrates that sort of crap does nothing to reduce crime.
          So yes while going at this crap often won't change the minds of the people we most hope to influence, we at least give others the courage to express their own beliefs or sway those who are still undecided in where they stand themselves.

          Better education is the best we can hope for, and hopefully will continue to improve in the generations to come producing more inquiring and open minds in the future.

      •  Good behaviour matters (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CA wildwoman

        'Reaching people who are not yet convinced' is a reason we should always try to be as well-behaved as possible (beyond its being a good end in itself), as well as 'as rational, and as reasonable' (the two are not the identical, viz Ms Rand)---people of good will will be more likely to agree with our opinions if they feel they'd like to be like us. (I first heard this bit of wisdom from a Christian exhorting other Christians not to make Christians look like people no non-Christian would want to be.)

        Very few people, perhaps none, really go from first principles, unbiased evidence, and reason to reach most of their conclusions about what are goods and how we'd best achieve them---instead, we (I, too, am a sinner, and likely you too) hear people whom they love or who sound authoritative or are deemed admirable and adopt their opinions, and the 'evidence' and 'arguments' slot into place...another Christian preacher exhorted 'Believing is seeing.'  (And the process is circular:  the more you agree with someone, the more likely you are to exaggerate their other virtues and minimise their failings, since to do otherwise is to engender cognitive dissonance, which is painful for most.)

        Of course, there are those who will find some conservative advocates compelling precisely because those advocates  are truculent: they value truculence as 'authentic' (true, but irrelevant, as many authentically believe nonsense and worse) or 'manly' (not as I define it, but as many do), or admire that someone else thinks much as they do but is less timid than they about saying it, or just think that passion is the best argument...and once they are admired, their refusal to let the Truth as they see it be altered by mere facts is seen as 'sticking to their principles', their enjoyment of the prospect of the suffering of the weak to be 'hard-headedness', and (even more so than before) their obnoxiousness proof that they're on the right track.  I doubt we can get such...or want them.

        Shorter: when you state your views, be a person other people will want to be like, and you will improve the chance that they will be more like you.  On the other hand, some people want to be like people we find egregiously obnoxious, will never agree with us, and for that we should be glad.

  •  At least he was honest (70+ / 0-)

    about his inability to read and comprehend three paragraphs.  For him, and his cohorts, it is necessary to just listen/watch the spew and shout along with the bigots.

    Fox "news" and Limbaugh are so dangerous because brainwashing really works.  I feel like we're in The Prisoner, alone we struggle against the Village.

    •  Yes, they believe what they believe and it has (15+ / 0-)

      nothing to do with facts or logic.  Their very being is invested in what they believe, and for them to consider that they are wrong would be shattering to their self image as being superior to all those "takers".

      “The future depends entirely on what each of us does every day.” Gloria Steinem

      by ahumbleopinion on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:36:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  a little trivia (9+ / 0-)

      "It is always more difficult to fight against faith than against knowledge."

      More info:
      http://www.quoteyard.com/...

      "All propaganda has to be popular and has to accommodate itself to the comprehension of the least intelligent of those whom it seeks to reach."

      "By the skillful and sustained use of propaganda, one can make a people see even heaven as hell or an extremely wretched life as paradise."

      "Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it."

      All the above are Hitler quotes

      "History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling the money and its issuance." -James Madison

      by FreeTradeIsYourEpitaph on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:36:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Aristotle got there first (7+ / 0-)
        A tyrant must put on the appearance of uncommon devotion to religion. Subjects are less apprehensive of illegal treatment from a ruler whom they consider god-fearing and pious. On the other hand, they do less easily move against him, believing that he has the gods on his side.
        The Politics

        He had also seen what Plato did in his manuals for oligarchic tyranny, The Republic and The Laws. For example,

        The greatest principle of all is that nobody, whether male or female, should be without a leader. Nor should the mind of anybody be habituated to letting him (or her) do anything at all on his (or her) own initiative–to his leader he shall direct his eye and follow him faithfully. And even in the smallest matter he should stand under leadership. For example, he should get up, or move, or wash, or take his meals...only if he has been told to do so. In a word, he should teach his soul, by long habit, never to dream of acting independently, and to become utterly incapable of it.

        Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

        by Mokurai on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:27:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks! Time Plato gained the bad rep he deserves (0+ / 0-)

          trying to stay alive 'til I reach 65!

          by chmood on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 05:34:01 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  How many people read the classics though? (0+ / 0-)

            Seriously how many people do you know who've actually bothered to read Plato's letters and Machiavelli's books for instance? Although in fairness I always treat it with a grain of salt in both the chance for mistranslation, misrepresentation, and the fact that philosophers by nature are good at playing devil's advocate.

      •  Heh- I've always seen this attributted to Goering (0+ / 0-)
        "Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it."
        ...but I've hardly researched it.
        •  Actually no, not Goering but Goebbels (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Remembering Jello

          Goering was the head of the Luftwaffe and founder of the Gestapo, Goebbels was the minister of propaganda and this quote is typically attributed to him, honest and understandable mistake on your part.

          That is of course rather painful for those involved. One should not as a rule reveal one's secrets, since one does not know if and when one may need them again. The essential English leadership secret does not depend on particular intelligence. Rather, it depends on a remarkably stupid thick-headedness. The English follow the principle that when one lies, one should lie big, and stick to it. They keep up their lies, even at the risk of looking ridiculous.
          "Aus Churchills Lügenfabrik" ("Churchill's Lie Factory"), 12 January 1941, Die Zeit ohne Beispiel (Munich: Zentralverlag der NSDAP., 1941), pp. 364-369
          This and similar lines in Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf about what he claimed to be a strategem of Jewish lies using "the principle & which is quite true in itself & that in the big lie there is always a certain force of credibility; because the broad masses of a nation are always more easily corrupted in the deeper strata of their emotional nature than consciously or voluntarily," are often misquoted or paraphrased as: "The bigger the lie, the more it will be believed."
          Quote from wikiquote's Joseph Goebbels page which also references the misattribution as well.

          The real source is quite likely Hitler accepting paraphrasing of Mein Kampf as the most likely source.

      •  to a little trivia (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CA wildwoman

        Bravo! I have been trying to tell people that what is going on now in this country with politicians spewing misleading comments as well as down right lies to the wingnuts who scarf them up like gold because it plays on their ignorance & bigotry. Tried telling them do a little reading and studying on how Hitler & his sociopaths managed to take over and destroy a country using the same tactics being used by tea party thugs and get no where. I am a senior female and cannot for the life of me understand the vicious hatred of these so called Pseudo Christian people. People are people it doesn't matter their color or religion, or sexual orientation what exactly is so scary about them just because they don't look like you, that stirs such hatred in some people. What a sad thing it must be that you can harbor such hatred & ignorance. My father left Germany just as Hitler was coming into power and when I was old enough, had my brother & I watch the old news reels on how the Nazis used rhetoric, scapegoating,lies & pageantry to control the people and pointed out exactly what they were doing. He hoped we would remember & be very suspicious when politicians try to use these tactics and  to look beyond the smoke & mirrors to find out what their real intentions were.

        •  'Baffle 'em with Bullshit' was taught to me (0+ / 0-)

          in college back in the 70s by a pysch major.

          I was also lucky in high school to have a government teacher who was a liberal & often discussed the use of 'glittering generalities' (phrases in speeches that everyone can agree with because they are meaningless) by politicians & anyone trying to get into leadership positions.

          Abusers can build support for total nonsense by starting with little, harmless agreement points - total salesmanship.

          Something that doesn't make good sense, makes bad sense. That means someone is being deliberately hurtful & selfish. Look for motives behind actions & words.

          by CA wildwoman on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 05:15:17 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Seriously, (2+ / 0-)

      WTF is wrong with people that give a tl;dr to 3 paragraphs?

      That is just sad.

      Of course, it could have been 3 words, or 300 pages and it still probably wouldn't penetrate.

      WTF? Is everyone nuts, or just me?

      by Jeff Murdoch on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 08:15:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  My conclusion would be that the reader was (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OldDragon

      lying about the level of discourse being a challenge.  Perhaps we can begin to put the comebacks into certain categories like types of logical fallacies or types of verbal abuse.  I'll take a stab at this one.  This commenter wanted to depict your statement as a a "snobbish" response.  That would translate as "disrespect".  What if you could capture the essence of the slander, get into the underlying theme and reverse it back on the abuser.  Say you could state that the people reading your comment are competent and undaunted by the way you chose to present your argument, thank you very much, and it is disrespectful to imply that they would have any problem at all understanding the points you were making whether they agreed or not.  Right back at them!

  •  I'll give it a go (35+ / 0-)

    Not that your answer is complicated, I'm just saying, this is one idiot I would push back on until he begged for mercy  ;)

    "The Religious Right is a very clear example of what Sagan is talking about. A mass of people refusing any scientific knowledge or facts, without any skepticism at all, in fact denigrating it, instead elevating 'faith' and 'beliefs' above critical thinking or even observation of quantifiable reality.
     
    You can't really make it any simpler. Sure, it leaves out some obviously good info about Limbaugh and a list of others--but with people like this, you literally have to keep it to one thought, one paragraph.

    And then if he still doesn't get it, unfriend his stupid, trolling ass, unless it's "close family", then just keep them off your timeline and remember to check their page once in awhile. It's so much better for your health ;)

    This all started with "what the Republicans did to language".

    by lunachickie on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:52:46 AM PST

  •  Pathetic. (8+ / 0-)

    Is it any wonder why they're dittoheads?  They can only "understand" the faulty arguments that are used to support their own positions.  Any evidence that supports an argument that opposes their beliefs is "fluff."  No wonder it's impossible to have a civil discussion with such people.

    -5.13,-5.64; GOP thinking: A 13 year path to citizenship is too easy, and a 5 minute background check is too burdensome. -- 1audreyrenee

    by gizmo59 on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:54:54 AM PST

    •  They don't want a discussion (12+ / 0-)

      They want their erroneous beliefs reinforced.  I encountered a similar facebook rant from my cousin's sister-in-law, complete with the explatives and the "I know your kind," accusation.  I haven't posted on my cousin's page since.

      Knowledge without conscience is the ruination of the soul -- François Rabelais

      by ccyd on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:31:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  not directed at you specifically, but (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      David PA

      srfRantz was acting like a jackass.

      He jumped onto someone's else's facebook page and asked the same question "over and over" even though the states he already knew the answer to the question.

      Further, that pompous 3 paragraph screed, heaped on top of the belligerent attitude, has ZERO chance of bringing someone over from the dark side. So what was the purpose?

      He's not too "pointy headed to communicate", he's not trying to communicate at all.

      "The right is correct on one thing...we really are a bunch of easily outraged nitpickers."

      by potato on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:48:53 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  "What was the purpose?" (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sagesource

        Asked without a hint of irony.

        Just sayin'....

      •  I'll take that under advisement (14+ / 0-)

        but you make several incorrect assumptions.

        the post showed up in my feed because a friend posted it. so I replied to him.

        I asked the question of him once and got the rank attitude from the jerk completely out of the blue. so I asked why he wouldn't answer and why he was so angry with me for simply asking. got more of the evasion. and the hate.
        then I became intrigued and it became a test of wills. as I explain in another post below. but we only went a couple rounds and I gave up. on him. that's it.

        I never intended to bring anyone over from the dark side. and throughout, told them I didn't want to question their beliefs nor would I try to convey mine to them. They made it clear they didn't want to communicate and were threatened by it. I said only that I wanted to hear what they had to say and what they believed, to which I received the continued hostility. Am I a jackass? if you say so.

        until the 'nice' guy answered and then asked me for my answer and I gave the 'pompous' reply.

        at which point he gave his answers and the thread ended.

        no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

        by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:32:54 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Keep in mind that FB (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        srfRantz, SoCaliana, sidnora, OldDragon

        is a social media - if you put something out there, you cannot only expect fawning admiration. The diarist did very well and kept composure and class.

        RWNJs should be countered at any junction if they bring up their ignorant talking points. I did so at a holiday gathering a couple of days ago and have no regrets for embarrassing the hell out of the guy in public.  

        Paranoia strikes deep. Into your life it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid. You step out of line, the man come and take you away. - S. Stills

        by ask on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:56:30 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I do it when people make the mistake (0+ / 0-)

          Of copying me on a mass email that is easy to verify as false. I hit "reply to all." (Most senders don't use BCC when spewing lies) Then I say, ohhh so sweetly, "Wow, that is horrible! I was appalled when I read this. Fortunately it's not true!" And then I include the Snopes link, which usually takes all of five minutes to find.

          I hope they're embarrassed. But whether they are or not, it often results in RWNJs removing me from their list of "People I Can Forward Bullshit To."  Of course, it's a little tougher now that the RW has gone after Snopes. Cuz we all know those Snopes people just love Obama, and therefore cannot be trusted.

          "So oftentimes it happens that we live our lives in chains, and we never even know we have the key." --Robb Strandlund and Jack Tempchin

          by Celestia89 on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 06:35:04 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I haven't gotten to do that since MI:2 was in the (0+ / 0-)

          cinema. I publicly humiliated the acting mayor asking what guarantees we were being offered that after an amalgamation of two councils the outlying regions that had formed the second council would be treated suitably instead of being ignored outside rate hikes to fund town works (he was still deputy mayor till the last elections I believe [like most worthless conservative politicians we just couldn't get rid of him and the mayor]). He dodged my question for 5 whole minutes while I tried to pin him down and get him to actually discuss what their plans were for where we lived. The news footage later on showed him going from white to beetroot (while repeating the same worthless talking point I'd been trying to pin him down on in the first place) a fact I'd missed in real life, and I was still a high school student at the time.
          Though we managed to dodge the amalgamation temporarily back then it got forced onto us in the end, and everyone suffers as a result.

    •  This is literally true (4+ / 0-)

      There's even research that confirms it.

      http://voices.yahoo.com/...

      Being attentive to the needs of others might not be the point of life, but it is the work of life. It can be ... almost impossibly difficult. But it is not something we give. It is what we get in exchange for having to die. - Jonathan Safran Foer

      by ramara on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:55:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  They've been trained to distrust long rationales (5+ / 0-)

      Reading them is hard work. This group of Americans has been told that they shouldn't even bother to attempt to follow them, because only "Liberals" use such arguments. If it takes more than two steps to explain, they must not trust it!

      Any education that uses such intellectual constructions is also rejected, because it is obviously "Liberal." Anyone who uses "big" words, longer explanations, and references to scientific studies is immediately identified as "Liberal." They will not listen to anything you say. Of course, this attack on the thinking man is nothing new. Adlai Stevenson was attacked for his erudition, although he was derided as an "egghead" back then.

      Here is the consummate example of the reasoning power of most hothoused Conservatives:

      "The Bible says it.
      I believe it.
      And that settles it."

      They say "cut back" - we say "fight back"!

      by Louise on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:00:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  he just did that, identified me as Liberal (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gizmo59, Louise

        I went back to see if he'd replied to my final post thanking him for engaging at least. I wanted to see if he was willing to finally have a discussion.

        he said basically, 'your opinions are 100% straight from the Liberal playbook, mine are 100% opposed. You will never change my mind'

        and I had not expressed any opinions on politics generally at all other than my answer that it was Limbaugh who best exemplified what Sagan was talking about, the 'charlatan' misleading the willfully ignorant. and of course I did that while repeating Sagan's definitions and description and giving an example. too many words!

        he also said he'd discuss my opinion with me but only if I accepted his that it was Obama first. I declined and explained they were really two separate issues.

        I may have planted a seed as someone said up there...I feel obligated to carry on now, though I was never intending to enter into yet another long and eventually pointless 'discussion.'

        neither to I intend to get into a blow by blow of it here. (sorry!)
        I am glad for the discussion on the mindset, and that was primarily what I was interested in. thank you and the rest for your insights.

        no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

        by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:45:18 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Some of them rely on Answers in Genesis (0+ / 0-)

        which provides long, complex, sometimes very technical, and mutually contradictory answers to laughable questions, such as how Adam could see the stars that were many light-years away less than a week after they were created.

        Tastes differ, even on the dark side.

        Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

        by Mokurai on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:53:36 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  There's a book you might enjoy reading (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          irishwitch

          It's called "The Year of Living Biblically" by A.J. Jacobs, I've been reading it the past few days. In general it's been proving interesting and there's a bit from where he goes to a Creationist museum early on that deals with that exact point involving the AiG crowd.

          Of course, the creationists cite plenty of scientific evidence of their own. Or more precisely, they interpret the same evidence as being proof of creationism. Mark told me about a T. rex bone in Montana that broke open and had blood vessels. No way that could be millions of years old, he said.
          The article Esquire ran was called “Greetings from Idiot America,” and it was very funny. But I have to disagree with the headline. The Answers in Genesis folks aren’t idiots. And despite a British news show that scored its segment with Deliverance-style banjo music, they aren’t hillbillies. Everyone I met had a full set of well-orthodontured teeth and blinked at regular intervals. I can’t prove it, but I’d wager there’s no difference in the average IQ of creationists and evolutionists.
          The thing is, their faith in the literal Bible is so strong, they will squeeze and distort all data to fit the Genesis account. In fact, you have to be quite sharp to be a leading creationist. The mental gymnastics can be astonishing.
          Consider AiG’s resident astrophysicist, Jason Lisle. Mark introduced me to him proudly. “A real, live PhD who believes in creationism. Here he is, in 3-D.”
          Jason has meticulously parted hair, looks a bit like Paul Reubens, and is sweet in an unforced way. He tells me it wasn’t easy being a creationist PhD student. He had to stay closeted about his beliefs and write for the AiG magazine under a pseudonym.
          Now here’s the interesting part: Like mainstream scientists, he thinks the universe is billions of light years big. But if it’s that big, and only six thousand years old, the light rays from distant stars wouldn’t have time to travel to the earth. Shouldn’t the night sky be black?
          “That’s a tough one,” he says. “But it’s not a killer.”
          There are several possibilities.
          1. The speed of light may not have always been 186,000 miles per second. Perhaps it was faster when the universe began.
          2. The time-zone analogy. You can leave Kentucky at 5: 00 p.m. and arrive in Missouri at 4: 00 p.m. In the same way, there may be something to continuous time zones in space.
          3. Something called gravitational time dilation. I didn’t quite understand it, but it had to do with our galaxy having a special place in the universe.

          Jacobs, A J (2012-01-31). The Year of Living Biblically (pp. 60-61). Random House. Kindle Edition.

          •  Exactly (0+ / 0-)

            That's all laid out on the AIG Web site.

            Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

            by Mokurai on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 11:47:32 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  The book covers a lot of other stuff that is (0+ / 0-)

              similarly interesting, including stuff I didn't know personally, and I've been going hammer and tong with Christians for 2 full decades now over their doctrine versus the scriptures (personally I find it hypocritical to call yourself a follower of Jesus but refuse to follow his example at all, instead diving for the OT laws for your way to live).

              Hence my recommendation, since while in the case of AiG this is on their website, some of the discussions with those who believe the crap provide some pearls of insight. One of the things from that segment is (note this was the Creationist museum that was written at), include their support of interracial marriage (we're all one race anyway so this was refreshing), commenting that Darwinism probably led to more racism (I can't really reject their reasoning completely on that, the argument has some substance for a change). While in dealing with the shatnez tester (the prohibition against mixed fibers), it touches on the blind adherence to laws relating to things as little as the order you put on your shoes and tie the laces (Rabbi teaching apparently that culminated in the "set table").

  •  "Uneducated" is a five syllable word. (8+ / 0-)

    Therein lies the crux of the problem. The word describing them has too many syllables. "Ignorant" cuts it down to three. I'd suggest "stupid" at two, or "dumb" at one, except I don't really think they are truly stupid or dumb.  I guess we have to go with "deaf" and "blind" as more appropriate single syllable words.

  •  "How many times did he tell you to get bent, (12+ / 0-)

    Dr. Sagan?"

    "BILLions and BILLions."

  •  I generally do not respond (9+ / 0-)

    to RWNJs on Facebook.

    I have learned that my time is better spent, as it really doesn't matter what I say. The people in my life that are seemingly normal in many ways have tunnel vision where some things are concerned.

    I believe they choose to live with blinders on. I think they are so afraid of what the real world might require of them, that they choose to be dense.

    What I do, if something is totally out of whack, is find a snopes article refuting their post, and simply post the link as a comment. Then I go away from the land of crazy and do not turn back. Or...if there is something that is an opinion, then I find a newspaper piece and post that link.

    It isn't worth continuing an argument. But I do add my 2 cents worth. If they unfriend me? Oh well. (And I have had relatives and friends unfriend me.) If they reply back, I do not even indicate that I've seen their reply.

    Peace, Hope, Faith, Love

    by mapamp on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:03:04 PM PST

    •  I have engaged some on the Right and a variety (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mapamp, srfRantz

      of science deniers as a sort of research project to expand my understanding of human delusion. I find it educational and often amusing. Apparently I have occasionally broken through, but it is hard to tell. For example, I once emptied out an AIDS-denial discussion forum on the Web. Did I convince anybody, or did they all go somewhere else? I don't know. They all just disappeared one day, without any conversation in the group about it.

      But one thing I am certain of is that you can let a ray of light shine into their children's minds if you can talk to them, and it can have a substantial effect later on.

      Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

      by Mokurai on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 11:58:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  They have adopted a philosophy (8+ / 0-)

    that not only tacitly encourages closing one's mind to facts one cannot incorporate, but overtly holds up such practices as virtuous.

    That is a psychological wall that cannot be easily broken.

    Side note: I can't stand Upworthy any more because their goddamn titles/intros have become so goddamn cliche: "X event happened. Melodramatic statement of excitement Y."

    "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

    by raptavio on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:04:55 PM PST

  •  We should all plunge in those waters now and then. (11+ / 0-)

    It's a test of bravery.

    It's a great reminder of what we are dealing with.

    It's good practice talking with people who talk like idiots. (Some of them are quite bright, actually. A mind is a terrible thing to waste.)

    You also see a lot of this in the comment sections on mainstream news websites - the bottom feeders just come in a foul the waters, reasonable people don't want to take part.

    Just another underemployed IT professional computer geek.

    by RhodeIslandAspie on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:05:05 PM PST

    •  Stupid is a choice. (7+ / 0-)

      "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

      by raptavio on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:07:37 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  So is trolling (12+ / 0-)

        a lot of the bottom feeders on the comments sections of mainstream news websites are there only to foul the discussion--this is done simply so that reasonable people don't stick around and try to talk things through with others.

        Exactly why mapamp's way of responding with hit-and-run fact links is often effective. It may not stop trolling, but it makes it so the bottom feeders have to keep starting new threads to troll ;)

        This all started with "what the Republicans did to language".

        by lunachickie on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:12:18 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Comment sections on news sites (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lunachickie, OleHippieChick, IndieGuy

          are just one step removed from the cesspool of all comment threads - YouTube. This way, there be dragons.

          "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

          by raptavio on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:27:13 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  YouTube is tame (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            travelerxxx

            compared to news sites that farm out to Disquis anymore. Have you been to Rolling Stone's website lately? I think Mother Jones uses Disquis as well. Unbelievable...

            This all started with "what the Republicans did to language".

            by lunachickie on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:30:54 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  The Hearst papers "comments" software (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Patango

              recently changed to something produced by a company named "viafoura." Though the previous comment section was previously a model of incivility, now the comments have plummeted from the cesspool to the "cess." The level of vulgarity and vitriol has increased by several magnitudes of hate. (These days I need a scale to measure hate, evidently.)

              As it's my town, I spend some time at the Hearst's Houston Chronicle site. Most of the time there are about half a dozen of us that attempt to answer the barrage of hate and ignorance in the comments following nearly every story. We're outnumbered 100:1 by fascists ...at least. Numerous posters enter comments 24/7/365, and appear to never sleep. We're assuming we're up against a Koch bankrolled boiler-room.

            •  Disqus isn't the problem (0+ / 0-)

              Merely the medium of exchange. There's a lot of good discussions that occur on sites that use them, hell it was through helping out some authors with a google docs issue on a blog a friend posted to FB that made me join up, and it's used as the commenting system for a few interesting webcomics and blogs I follow. There's sites that use FB for the commenting mechanism that are as bad, or that use their own on site system as well, again medium of exchange not the problem itself. News sites are an obvious target for abuse. Just like SodaHead, which I've received so many nasty responses to comments and opinion pieces I'm still surprised I haven't blocked anyone.

      •  "Stupid is as stupid does." (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        irishwitch

        --Forest Gump's mother used to say.

        "So oftentimes it happens that we live our lives in chains, and we never even know we have the key." --Robb Strandlund and Jack Tempchin

        by Celestia89 on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 06:39:17 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  For me (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueoasis, srfRantz

    I am finding it is time better spent trying to sway those who are sitting on the fence, than to try and bring back to reality, those who have followed Rush off the cliff.

    •  This is interesting. I learned that convincing (0+ / 0-)

      the politically independent  person was the goal in letters to the editor or in tabling, canvassing, etc. and so to direct one's points to those people at all times.  The independent is by definition a fence sitter.

  •  This is why I don't waste my time (6+ / 0-)

    with full-tilt neocon fundie chuckleheads anymore. If they can't (or won't) expand their understanding of their beliefs beyond a third grade mentality, anything you present to them will be regarded as an insult instead of a challenge and they immediately declare you to be an enemy of their "state". It's like trying to persuade birthers that Hawaii is actually a part of the United States - it just ain't gonna happen. You can even try asking them to count the stars on the flag... they'll get up to 10 or 11 then quit because they get bored and don't see the point.

    Heinlein said it best:

    Never try to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and it annoys the pig.

  •  They are "true believers" (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z, blueoasis, SoCaliana

    Impossible to reason with.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:06:56 PM PST

    •  . (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      peptabysmal

      "It is always more difficult to fight against faith than against knowledge."  -Adolf Hitler (Mein Kampf)

      http://www.quoteyard.com/...

      Hitler knew about it, so does the political parties in the US with conservative party being the closest clone to adolf's dream.

      "History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling the money and its issuance." -James Madison

      by FreeTradeIsYourEpitaph on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:41:56 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  They bank on us feeling hopeless. (12+ / 0-)

    There is a new consciousness rising among them.  It's the NEED TO BE RIGHT.  Not the desire, the need.  Being wrong feels like a death to them, so they will buy anything from anybody that props up their own belief system.

    The simply cannot and will not tolerate the feeling of being wrong, so they will do ANYTHING...even lie to themselves...to feel RIGHT.

    The term "Righties" has never been more appropriate.

    •  That's not real new (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Matt Z, IndieGuy

      it's just a good conclusion to come to after we examine other more obvious possibilities. Because you're absolutely right. I've got a sister-in-law like that. HAS TO be right or she's a failure. She's also a huge drama queen--I'm still unsure if that's related behavior or not...

      This all started with "what the Republicans did to language".

      by lunachickie on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:15:45 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  cognitive dissonance is painful for them (3+ / 0-)

      excruciatingly so. to use a few big words. LOL

      most of the research you read on their brains, such as Lakoff, will mention this.

      but I'd never seen it so pronounced as the guy who would not even answer the question, yet kept coming back to tell me to fuck off over and over. it became a test of wills to not leave and give up.

      then the guy popped in at the very end to be nice and helpful.
      then just went stupid when confronted with my answer.
      It clearly just could not would not computer.

      both aspects of it combined to make it the strangest thing I'd ever experienced online and I've been to Free Republic (10 years ago once, never went back) and Daily Caller (a week or 2 ago, never went back either)

      no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

      by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:51:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  . (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Patango

        I have seen it many many times... but then again I have a hard core right wing brother.  We actually get along for the most part except when it comes to certain political or social issues... his big issue is abortion not that he is all that great with kids he just has some kind of hatred of women.

        "History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling the money and its issuance." -James Madison

        by FreeTradeIsYourEpitaph on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:53:40 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Anti-choicers don't give a rat's ass about kids - (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mamamedusa, travelerxxx

          It's ALL about controlling women's sexuality and punishing them for having sex. You're not telling us anything surprising about your brother.

          Anti-choice groups give misogynists the sanction to terrorize women and girls (screaming at them outside clinics, following them home, posting their personal data online, outing them at work) - and pat themselves on the back for Being A Gewd KKKhristian for doing it. And what a great way to get even with all those stuck-up bitches who wouldn't date them in high school for being "creepy"!

          Thank God, the Bob Fosse Kid is here! - Colin Mochrie

          by gardnerhill on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 05:26:30 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  He doesn't care about anyone but himself (0+ / 0-)

             Anti-choicers are like most RWNJ's- selfish a-holes who think their opinions and background is the only one that's relevant to an issue. It's a real-life version of Trent Reznor's line of "There is no you, there is only me."

               The need for certainty and authority from these types show what a bunch of weak-minded trash they are. I have no respect for them, because they don't respect anyone other than their little clique. It's very high-school like.

            •  Well they also don't seem to appreciate truth (0+ / 0-)

              in labeling, we're pro-choice, not pro-abortion. We're not mandating people abort fetuses, we mandate the option be available without "morality" based restrictions (I've been pro-choice as long as I can remember, a moral choice that was only reinforced by the fact my mother had to abort one of my sisters due to the fetus becoming adhered to the stomach lining with nil chance of survival [it was not a fun discussion as you can imagine regarding why she made the choice to abort, but it reinforced in my mind the necessity of it being available as a choice]). Part of their anti-choice doctrine is due to Onan and the "be fruitful and multiply" of the bible, but largely it's just because they're like you say selfish.
              There's a school of thought that claims humans are born as moral creatures, having the benefit of raising kids and developing my own moral code over the 31 years I've been alive I can honestly call BS, morality is something we learn from others and develop further on our own, and everyone deserves the right to develop their own beliefs and live as they please on the sole proviso it doesn't cause harm to another. Their beliefs are frequently leading to harm of others in my opinion given they're restricting access to what can be vital services.

    •  . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      srfRantz, peptabysmal

      You are absolutely correct.  The process of changing deeply held beliefs actually involves emotional pain and distress, therefore there is a strong built-in rejection of contradictory information to avoid pain.  Otherwise entire belief systems unravel before ones' eyes.... someone else knew about all this too:

      "As soon as by one's own propaganda even a glimpse of right on the other side is admitted, the cause for doubting one's own right is laid."

      Mein Kampf 1925 author adolf hitler

      "History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling the money and its issuance." -James Madison

      by FreeTradeIsYourEpitaph on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:49:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  One trick I like to do with these types is this. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NoMoreLies, linkage, peptabysmal

    You can factually refute point by point everything they say, and they'll be oblivious. So, I like to attack their methodology - the name calling, misuse of terms like Nazi, Fascist, Communist, the tendency for them to wrap themselves up in a bubble, the fact that they've been clobbered in recent elections, except for 2010.

    Just another underemployed IT professional computer geek.

    by RhodeIslandAspie on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:08:00 PM PST

    •  I've found bonding first really works (8+ / 0-)

      Let's say the issue is welfare.

      I make a point of saying that we on the left don't approve of welfare cheats, but we forget to mention it, just as those on the right forget to mention the honest folks that truly need the extra help. I ask what proportion of recipients in their opinion deserve welfare (general answer is about 50%). I tell 'em I think it's around 20% of long-term recipients (IMHO), but stress that most welfare is pretty temporary and almost all of that portion have truly fallen on hard times.

      More often then not, we end up talking rationally about the issue and walk away at the end without feeling disrespected or insulted.

      No one will change their mind while they feel they're being judged.

      "The right is correct on one thing...we really are a bunch of easily outraged nitpickers."

      by potato on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:13:12 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  that usually works for me (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FiredUpInCA

        this was so unusual in that I got the 'fuck off' from the get go. kinda sorta tried it anyhow but no chance after he came out swinging from the get go.

        and then the other guy, was nice, friendly even, who did answer, then asked me, then clammed up.

        its why I had to write about it.
        never in my wildest dreams thought anyone would notice or care. LOL

        no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

        by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:53:30 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Which illustrates the issue: (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        srfRantz

        They've been taught to be binary thinkers.  There is only black and white.   In other words, when a liberal disagrees with them, it's because the liberal thinks that we just want to give away "free stuff" to all comers.

        They never stop to understand or acknowledge that there are shades of gray and things are not quite so binary until you force them to do it - and your example of doing so above is pretty ingenious.

        However, depending on the subject matter, it can be vastly more difficult to get them to step away from the binary thinking.

        •  While life is shades of grey. (0+ / 0-)

          A topic I truly began to comprehend when I started debating in year 4 of school, having to play devil's advocate for something I was vehemently against (whaling), I found in the debate the necessity to not think in absolutes, but to (with the research assisting here I must add) comprehend the reality of the fact values change, and even in day to day things nothing is always certain. Sadly a lot of these people are piss poor debaters, in part because they can't put themselves in another's shoes and only see in the binary as you say.
          Then a lot of liberals are too used to playing devil's advocate so we fail to address our own points adequately while being able to empathize with the opponent.

  •  They Want You to Talk Like a Sensible Information (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ceebee7, blueoasis, srfRantz

    source of theirs: like their preachers, politicians and pundits.

    Obviously the way you communicate is impenetrable for them. And it always will be while you are contradicting any of their authorities.

    Given the behavior you're describing plus a little of the quoted material, that crowd is way too far gone to engage with unless you just want to energize them.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:08:35 PM PST

  •  I call people like this, (10+ / 0-)

    bumper sticker people, because they can invariably fit what passes as their intellectual arguments on complex issues on bumper stickers.

    Just another underemployed IT professional computer geek.

    by RhodeIslandAspie on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:09:34 PM PST

  •  There's a reason they've earned (6+ / 0-)

    the title, "American Taliban".

    I agree with the wisdom of choosing your battles.  Since you've engaged this one, I would keep trying.  

    There really is only one issue.  Fear.  Their agitators see reasons to fear "liberals" everywhere.  And that message pits American against American.  

    I am brain dead at the moment (too much pie yesterday)or I would try to help with some examples, so my advice is to take a deep breath, a step back and give it another go.  Good luck.  Let us know how it goes.

    The President doesn't have a magic wand.

    by CJB2012 on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:15:38 PM PST

  •  maybe you planted a seed, who knows (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    onionjim, srfRantz, SoCaliana

    that's about the best you can hope for in these engagements (or entanglements...). Keeping it civil and fact-based is the best approach, good for you. How much energy you want to throw at it, well that's for you to decide!

  •  You've gotten your friend to cut (11+ / 0-)

    straight to his training as a conservative listener. And I don't think it's just the uneducated that Limbaugh and Hannity are after. It's anyone who will respond to ideas by believing anything that appeals to them viscerally.

    The things your friend responded with -- that you use too many fancy words, that you are just a talker (my version), that you are uninformed -- these are preconceptions that have been drilled into their heads about anyone who veers from the Republican marching orders du jour, but especially about enemy "liberals" and anyone who might disagree with them.

    Don't listen to those liberals. They are uninformed. They will trick you with their fancy words. They are after your money.

    Go back and count how many times "Did you know that..." [followed my a logical fallacy induced GOP talking point] you can find in those conversations about Republican Facts.TM I expect that pattern is easy to find.

    The whole shtick is to make people terrified of being duped by a liberal, and then telling them what they want to hear. It's manipulation 101. Anyone who paid attention in junior high school can recognize it.

    "Broccoli could take down a government. Broccoli is revolutionary." --Kris Carr

    by rb137 on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:22:21 PM PST

    •  exactly what the first guy was like (7+ / 0-)

      it was if he was in terror, that if he replied what he believed, I'd then reply with something that countered it and he wasn't going to be tricked or somehow suffer unwanted consequences.

      he said several variations on the 'don't listen to him' and 'they're all the same' when I hadn't said anything, and I resolved NOT to as a consequence. I just kept asking him to state his belief who the charlatan was. he never ever did. that's what made it so bizarre.

      no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

      by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:57:39 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Famiiar pattern... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz
    ... you might be a nice guy but I do not intend on trying to read [listen to] your rants to figure out your beliefs and forecasts unless you condense it into a short sentence or two without all the fluff.
    Sounds much like a slave-owner responding to a slave's complaint about being legally forbidden to learn to read...

    The few have always been able to control the masses by keeping them ignorant.

    Conservatives need do nothing except perpetuate the policies of the ruling elite through centuries to maintain that control.  RWNJs merely continue that ideology, ignorantly believing it's in their own interests.

    Can you post a link to your FB post (if it's allowed here)?  I'm in the mood for a discussion with idiots... and I too believe FB needs attendance by thinking people, no matter how nutty the RWNJs appear to be.

    "There's always room for cello." Yo Yo Ma

    by ceebee7 on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:29:33 PM PST

    •  I'm not sure its allowed or ethical (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SoCaliana, ceebee7, linkage

      believe me I'd love some backup...

      the thread just ended after I replied to his last comment posted above.

      as far as I could see, I blocked the 2 worst assholes.

      I'll PM you if you like, PM me if you're still interested.

      but again the thing that was so strange is there was basically no discussion. just name calling and attacks on me for asking them who the charlatan was.

      except for what I posted above, and a little bit more.

      the one cussing guy did finally engage with this little nugget exchange (paraphrased slightly from memory, I can't see it anymore after blocking him) between telling me to fuck off:

      RWNJ: check my page and see if you can figure it out.

      me: I saw it. Wow, its pretty hateful and racist, but I did get your answer (note to Kos readers: Obama as Hitler posters and cartoons abounding...)

      RWNJ: If hating muslims and progressive liberals is hateful and racist, then I'm guilty.

      me: why do you hate muslims and progressive liberals?

      RWNJ: muslims are trying to kill us and progressives want to tell us what to do. good enough?

      Me: I see, well since there are 1.6 billion Muslims I guess we should be concerned.
      aren't conservatives trying to tell us what to do as well?

      RWNJ: you got my answer. fuck off.

      no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

      by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:11:43 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  PM sent... Thx. (0+ / 0-)

        "There's always room for cello." Yo Yo Ma

        by ceebee7 on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:28:58 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Well we did kind of start that one... (0+ / 0-)

        Muslims vs Christians is an ancient one, and we're only exacerbating the situation in the middle east by intervening like we have. What's funny in a historical viewpoint is the Muslims established a highly successful trade based empire, wonderful (for the time) medical practitioners, supported the arts, and sciences. Now that's all collapsed and we've got a continuation of the crusades because both sides are being too frigging pigheaded to let go.
        Obviously it's not everyone, I know plenty of Muslims and Christians both that are completely against what's going on and will have no part in it.

        And Conservatives telling us what to do is A-OK, but God forbid we try to permit people to live their lives as they see fit because we're "telling them what to do".

  •  Another right winger on Facebook discussion (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueoasis

    I mean, really, who cares what right wingers spew on FB? How does this crap end up at the top of the rec list?

    If cutting Social Security & Medicare benefits for low income seniors is what Democrats do after they win a budget standoff, I'd hate to see what they do after they lose one.

    by Betty Pinson on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:32:40 PM PST

    •  Ummm.... (7+ / 0-)

      A bunch of people read it, like what they've read, and recommend (i.e. "rec") it for others to read. If enough people recommend it, it goes onto a list (the "rec" list), from where others read it. If they also recommend it, the diary stays on the list. Eventually it falls off the list and is replaced by some other diary you personally may not approve of, but which others will recommend. Lather, rinse, repeat....

    •  that's not what it was about actually (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FiredUpInCA, IndieGuy

      but I'm as surprised as you are.

      as I said elsewhere it was just written for personal release never intending to draw any eyeballs or expecting any.

      how do I get people to read my really good stuff?

      I know I'm not supposed to diary pimp but I'd love input on my recent piece:
      I Remember America

      hint hint...

      no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

      by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:28:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not your fault (0+ / 0-)

        There are some folks here who work really hard to fill the rec list up with "casual" diaries.

        If cutting Social Security & Medicare benefits for low income seniors is what Democrats do after they win a budget standoff, I'd hate to see what they do after they lose one.

        by Betty Pinson on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 06:31:31 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  In dealing with RWNJ, always KISS (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IndieGuy

    Keep it short and simple

  •  the hostility is easily explained (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IndieGuy, linkage

    you reacted to the dogwhistle.

    You are not supposed to do that.  The very point of the dogwhistle is that those that are supposed to hear it understand it while the rest doesn't and therefore just ignores the message as noise.

  •  Facebook is such a waste of time. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IndieGuy, ceebee7

    ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

    by James Allen on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:39:11 PM PST

  •  And they're winning (0+ / 0-)

    According to the latest polls, Republicans have an eight point advantage going into the next round of elections. Of course, that can change. But, it won't. The puppet masters are very, very good at conning the American public.

    We are going to be stuck with another round of Republican lunacy. They will repeal the ACA and cut social security and medicare. You can bank on it.

  •  cool, I posted this and took my dog for a walk (4+ / 0-)

    came back to rec list. Thanks!
    just tossed it off as sort of an afterthought to clear my mind of the interaction that happened earlier.

    been trying to get some other pieces noticed lately, fell completely off the radar...some of my best writing IMHO too!
    ;-)
    funny how that works.

    anyhow, will read thru all responses now. thanks again for noticing little old me.

    BTW, this guy was a total stranger, friend of a friend. all I wanted was one simple answer from my actual friend. got sucked in.
    I do my best usually not to...

    no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

    by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:40:04 PM PST

    •  You should only engage if there are other (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      srfRantz, the fan man

      non-right wingers who would read it and benefit from correct information.  You will not get anyplace with the true believers., but your presenting facts and rational argument in the face of crazy rants will show others what the correct facts are.

      Steve Gilliard Lives.

      by Bethesda 1971 on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:30:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm in my late 50s, get this all the time from (0+ / 0-)

      former HS "chums" and RWers on FB. Resolution in the New Year: don't bother. They don't like to be challenged and don't want to think. Life is WAY TOO SHORT.

      Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree. -Martin Luther

      by the fan man on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 03:47:00 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  why waste your time? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IndieGuy

    You seriously think you'll change his mind, about anything at all . . . ?

    It's like arguing with a window pane.  Why bother?

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:41:58 PM PST

    •  that's not what this was about (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Aquarius40, aitchdee, FiredUpInCA, martini

      I knew that going in.

      it was about a new level of both hate and stonewalling I'd not seen before.

      and being stunned by it.

      I knew it was impossible to change them, just never saw this level of both pre-emptive hate and brick wall stubbornness to even answer who they hated or why.

      no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

      by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:19:11 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I disagree (0+ / 0-)

      when I argue with a window pane I usually am able to persuade it that it is made of glass  :)

      "History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling the money and its issuance." -James Madison

      by FreeTradeIsYourEpitaph on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 04:05:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  That's part of the problem with the internet (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    k8dd8d, FiredUpInCA

    these days.

    "TL;DR" (Too Long; Didn't Read) has become a perfectly acceptable thing to say to explanations of things, if you want to dismiss them.

    •  This is funny-- just this morning I (0+ / 0-)

      was trying to think of a snappy comeback to tl,dr.  Like too long, too stupid to read...  tl,tstr.

      I occasionally counter something ridiculous with a snopes. most of the time I ignore.  I take most serious offenders off my newsfeed.  Never miss them later...

  •  Am I the only one (6+ / 0-)

    who read the reply to his comment and was reminded of Idiocracy?

    Specifically the way everyone made fun of how Luke Wilson talked, whenever he used a word with more than one syllable.

  •  They don't want to discuss or engage (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IndieGuy, srfRantz, Aquarius40, SoCaliana

    They want to make you go away, just as they want all they fear, cease to exist: gays, immigrants, blacks, Muslims, Jews...

    They can't articulate outside of their one tribe. The rest of us they fear.

    Sunday mornings are more beautiful without Meet the Press.

    by deben on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:46:06 PM PST

  •  I don't know if this is right or wrong. (12+ / 0-)

    But when it comes to right wingers of the teabagger type, I no longer try the reasonable approach, I start ranting and I out do them in the ranting department and won't stop, because I've had my fill of the way they always try and talk over us "libruls."

    The last one actually had the nerve to come into my home and pull this bullshit with some crazy bullshit about Obamacare messing with all the banking laws in the whole country and that's why she had to wait for a client's check to clear before she had access to the money.

    Well I started in on her about people dying in America without Healthcare and what a hard hearted bitch she was. She turned tail and ran out the door. And has never bothered me since, thank God.

    I'll talk to the ones who actually want to have a discussion. The rest of them can kiss my ass.

    God spare me the Heart to fight them... I'll fight the Pirates forever. -Mother Jones

    by JayRaye on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:52:39 PM PST

  •  My therapist recommends not (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IndieGuy, FiredUpInCA, martini

    wasting time looking for sanity in insane situations....

    IJS

    "The first duty of a revolutionist is to get away with it.". Abbie Hoffman

    by Joes Steven on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 12:52:51 PM PST

  •  It seems to me, you asked the wrong question. (4+ / 0-)

    And, then went on to answer it.

    You watched and heard the first half of the Sagan clip.

    They watched and heard the second half of the clip.

    Essentially, you and your audience are occupying two different cosmi. It's a fringe event.

  •  How do you respond to that? You did: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz, AmazingBlaise
    To someone basically admitting to you that they are too stupid, too slow and dim-witted, and too incurious to bother to try and figure out what you said?
    Paraphrase yourself to him:
    You have basically admitted that you are too stupid, too slow and dim-witted, and too incurious to bother to try and figure out what I've said.
    Be sure to express pity.
  •  My question to RWNJ's and "LOLBertarians"... (5+ / 0-)

    when they bleat about the ACA being "Socialized Medicine is this:

    Which private, for-profit insurance corporation(s) are Cubans and North Koreans required to purchase their health insurance from?
    I've yet to get an answer...

    Baby, where I come from...

    by ThatSinger on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:10:09 PM PST

  •  Conservatives' integrity is for sale. Cheap & easy (0+ / 0-)

    Faint praise and false bravado is all it takes.

    -7.75,-6.41 Time keeps on ticking, ticking, ticking...

    by owlbear1 on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:24:19 PM PST

  •  I am shocked! Shocked! (0+ / 0-)

    To see that the stating of strongly held beliefs has devolved into fighting and name calling.

  •  The simple dispute GOPers have with us... (6+ / 0-)

    is that we breathe 'their' country's oxygen.

    You existed at all. You attracted the notice of a herd of GOPers to your existence.

    You could have said 'hello' and received the same reaction.

  •  Ugh who wants to read this stuff nt (0+ / 0-)
  •  You can't... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mamamedusa

    Almost all people want to be 'right' but that comes in two very different flavors.

    Some people want to be right so bad that they are willing to admit when they are wrong, so they can change their belief to the more correct one, thus making them now 'right'.

    Others want to be right so bad that they will never let go of their current beliefs and will do anything to protect them from outside sources that show them to be incorrect.

    There is little you can do for the latter...

    The greatest shortcoming of the human race is our inability to understand the exponential function [Albert A. Bartlett]

    by fToRrEeEsSt on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:36:52 PM PST

  •  How about this? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Turn Left, SoCaliana, srfRantz

    Ask them to define what science is and describe what scientists do.

    Do the posters realize that they do not accept the hypothesis-testing world of the scientist because it has the capacity to poke holes in their belief system?

  •  Avoidance works (2+ / 0-)

    i have a brother, mother, and brother-in-law stimulated by Teabaggerism.  I avoid the discussion with the first two.  With the other, my youngest brother-in-law, I bait him from time to time, but only as payback for the six weeks in 1987 he sponged off us and borrowed some $480 which was never paid back, not counting a fair share of utilities, house payment, gas, wear and tear on a borrowed vehicle, and countless emotional turmoil.  

    Here's how I think they rooked him.  He's a loser;  married three times, divorced three times.  One child not from any of those marriages he didn't even know about till she was six.  Parents died while he was young.  Youngest of a family of ten - "Mascot" role.  I once tried to help him study for the literacy test to join the Army but it was a no-go:  he's not got the smarts to be an infantryman.  What he does now is a gig as a short haul truck driver, which is about the best he can do with his limitations.  He was involved in two fatal accidents during the aftermath of which the husband and wife owners of his company, who I am sure are avid teabaggers, supported him without question (though by the way he tells the stories, neither were his fault.  But if he wasn't so loyal to the owners it'd present a perfect opportunity to shitcan him)  Oh, and as a high school freshman, he was enchanted with the KKK.  Drug use when younger, apparently not now as truckers have to take piss tests.  How could he not be the target demographic?

    The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. -- John Kenneth Galbraith

    by Kangaroo on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 01:55:56 PM PST

  •  Look, this is WHO THEY ARE! (3+ / 0-)

    There is nothing at all to be gained by reasoning with them - they know what they were told and have no interest in hearing otherwise.

    I don't participate in "petitions" to republican politicians anymore. It is useless, and pointless. We must defeat them politically, and that means by supporting Democratic candidates, period. This is not the time to look for our ideal candidate...this is a time to get our enemies out of power...they are our enemies, by their own admission, and do not take them lightly.

    Bring me the head of Geraldo Rivera.

    by old mark on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:03:40 PM PST

  •  Stay on one point. I would have said Ayn Rand. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    k8dd8d

    Here is a helpful resource.

    http://andrej.com/...

    Economic Left/Right: -7.38
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -8.00
    Two steps to the right of Trotsky.

    by jvance on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:09:56 PM PST

  •  My right wing "friend" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz, Darth Stateworker

    a highschool classmate, simply deletes my facebook comments when I point out inconsistencies in his logic or untruthful statements.  

    In his mind, I'm so far left that I am hopeless. What's the saying that "truth has a left bias"?

    Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity. Horace Mann (and btw, the bike in kayakbiker is a bicycle)

    by Kayakbiker on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:28:23 PM PST

    •  "Reality has a well-known liberal bias" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kayakbiker

      You can thank Stephen Colbert for that gem of a quote I do believe.

      "I know there are some polls out there saying this man has a 32% approval rating. But guys like us, we don't pay attention to the polls. We know that polls are just a collection of statistics that reflect what people are thinking in "reality." And reality has a well-known liberal bias."
      Wikiquote Source
      And how the Conservatives think of "liberal bias" is summed nicely here. Rational Wiki Liberal Bias Page

  •  ironic, after reading Christie NYTimes article / (0+ / 0-)
  •  Simplify (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    k8dd8d

    What you have to say is "Limpbaugh is a whinning looser."  That's talk they'll understand.

    “Washing one's hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral. ” ― Paulo Freire

    by ActivistGuy on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:31:08 PM PST

  •  How would I repond? (5+ / 0-)

    I wouldn't. It's impossible, for me at least, to talk to people whose minds are closed. I'm a Buddhist, and what I see when I look at these people, are ones whose minds are trapped in deep deep ignorance and delusions that we are all not all connected and not dependent on one another.

    They are stuck in the them vs us delusion with a lot of contempt for those in their perceived "them" camp. I feel deep sorrow for them because I think they are afraid that they may be asked to give up some $$$, or give up some control, or give up ideology that they cling to, or give up some sense of self that they have constructed. Not a few of them I suspect are downright sociopaths. The cruelty and indifference in their cold hearts is quite stunning. Very dead give-aways of people, who have covered over their fear with tons of shit ideology. Tremendous suffering on their part. Can you imagine what it is like to be them and have so much hatred and contempt running thru your mind?

    So my advice is to not hate or demonize them. Take their nasty name calling and let it pass over you without soiling your own attitude. The hatred that they spew is not about us. It's what they generate all on their own. Have compassion for them.

    The Republican brand is totally bankrupt.

    by vlyons on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:31:17 PM PST

    •  yes to this (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      martini, DoggieBytes
      Can you imagine what it is like to be them and have so much hatred and contempt running thru your mind?
      I think it is perhaps why I am still drawn to engage with them more often than I should.

      I even tell them so, that it must be so awful to be them. Then ask why they won't listen to some reality or facts that might free them from their self-imposed delusions and fears. Never worked so far.

      I was just speaking with a dear friend today, how I seem to have an extra high level of empathy, and that may be why I suffer depression. I am clinically diagnosed and on meds BTW.

      I can't NOT feel what others are feeling. It weighs me down and I sometimes can't even function. I have to try and understand. HAVE TO.

      The times when I find peace are the times when I am able to let go of that.

      Thank you so much for your Buddhist perspective.

      no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

      by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:09:48 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  They need the Litany Against Fear.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        srfRantz

        because right now, their fears are huge strings, easily pulled by puppetmasters.

      •  Maybe (2+ / 0-)

        part of the " understanding " you seek is your own " acceptance " that this is just who these people are

        Your understanding of them ,or their beliefs , will not change them one iota , but your acceptance of that fact may bring some relief to yourself

        I will confront every bully or racist I come across , with knowledge and justice , I use to become even more inflamed trying to understand them and their hate ( not suggesting you are doing that  srfRantz ) , I felt they just needed more information , I finally realized " justice " can be achieved without them ever understanding what scum bag racist they are , and their policies

        While there is racism involved with these people , this is a war against democrats and liberals ...The fact that a black man got elected to represent it has inflamed it , but these people have seen us liberals as the enemy for a long time now , now they are all focused and out of the closet about it  

        Beer Drinkers & Hell Raisers

        by Patango on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 07:03:54 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  bingo and bingo (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Patango
          Your understanding of them ,or their beliefs , will not change them one iota , but your acceptance of that fact may bring some relief to yourself
          I keep hoping it will. Even though I understand them I still keep going back to try and get deeper into them, looking for what, I'm not sure.

          btw, anything by Lakoff, Altemeyer's The Authoritarians and some others have helped me for a long time. just google the 2nd if you haven't read it yet.

          this is the war I fight too. It keeps me pissed off enough to keep fighting:

          this is a war against democrats and liberals ...
          these people have seen us liberals as the enemy for a long time now
          the people manipulating this, and them, have 'embraced evil and called it good.'* and conversely they've demonized the ideas and policies which made this country great. I remember that America. I wrote about it in my previous diary (hint, hint)

          and they've made those of us who want a return to that America evil in the eyes of their dupes, who I am certain will be their thugs when push comes to shove...and shoot. that's why I keep fighting. trying to lift the veil, even if its hopeless.

          *ironically a quote from Sarah Palin, the oracle herself, referring in that instance to us, Democrats and Liberals. It's in her infamous 'blood libel' statement. the god of irony died at that point I believe.

          no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

          by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 08:31:25 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  The negative energy... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        srfRantz

        will have a strong effect on you.  I occasionally engage RWNJs on the net (mostly forums but of late some FB too) and find the toxicity can be overwhelming.  I literally will get terrible stomach aches if I spend too much time engaging with that level of negative energy.  

        It didn't used to get to me as I've been a discussion forum denizen since 1999.  I do wonder though, if the energy of the negativity has increased over the years? I used to be able to engage with people like that without it affecting me so much.  

        If you aren't feeling strong Stan, please don't engage, just drive by.  There will other opportunities, plenty of them unfortunately. I suggest you take breaks from it, for your own well being.  

        As to the substance (or lack thereof) in the actual discussion (too long too read) I think of it as the internet version of Gish Gallop.  Where Gish Gallop is defined in terms of one person spewing out half truths and lies in an insurmountable volume, on the net it's many RWNJs spewing mini Gish Gallop lines that together in a thread you can't keep up.

        The problem being it requires several sentences to debunk each lie/half truth bullet point that those of the opposing view often end up on the defensive and that's not a good, or we fall to their level and the 'debate' is just caricatures harping back and forth.

        I'm on the fence as to whether time spent trying debunk/defend online has a net positive effect.  I read the comments about possibly influencing by standers, but, I just don't know.  

        One more thought, I too appreciated the earlier Buddhist comment. I'm not a practicing Buddhist but I do read and follow it's philosophy and find it helpful in staying grounded in a chaotic and often hate filled world.  

        You take care....

    •  This entire thread (0+ / 0-)

      is most likely, with more syllables, exactly like what the RWNJ does to us. It is all Us vs Them. The winning team is still on the field, or some such metaphore.

      My SIL and I have decided to keep politics out of the conversations we have. We really have nothing in common but her dead brother, my dead husband. I have heard her call BO the N word, and was shocked. And said so.

      But tables turn, and she is trying to complete her BA at age 60 in Utah. She now complains to me that her Mormon history instructor is anti-semitic. Her father was a Jew, before he became a  Methodist. And he sees her as a Jew?

      BTW, she is also on SSDI, but hates on the takers.

      Americans, while occasionally willing to be serfs, have always been obstinate about being peasantry. F. Scott Fitzgerald, the Great Gatsby

      by riverlover on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 04:31:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I've said this a few times before... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jake formerly of the LP

    They don't want a discussion.  They want everyone to agree with their 'facts' and then their ideology is the only 'logical' conclusion to those 'facts'.

    “Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” - John Steinbeck

    by RichM on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:33:31 PM PST

  •  In the words of Harry Potter (0+ / 0-)

    Stupefying!

    Keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce.---Molly Ivins

    by never forget 2000 on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:34:19 PM PST

  •  Stan--Ya Might Have Just Dumbed Yourself Down (0+ / 0-)

    below the level of a ditto head.

    Readers & Book Lovers Pull up a chair! You're never too old to be a Meta Groupie

    by Limelite on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:40:48 PM PST

  •  Don't give up.It is an protracted long term battle (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jan4insight, srfRantz, peptabysmal

    ... that will take years to win, and we (on the net) have only just begun to battle. We only now, today, in this internet age, finally, FINALLY... we have the means to battle, but we have a lot of damage to undo... damage in terms of the "frozen psyches" .... but do not loose hope, because when one is chipping away at an iceberg, sooner or later, you hit a crack, and the berg splits in two.... and fragments...... Trust me. You are making greater headway then your detractors want to admit. He read your rant... he read enough.... enough to be stopped. Let him sit with it. And over time, as the evidence that is now floating to the surface, slowly, over these years, it will become clear. It might take years, but the truth will sway the majority. Yes, some will always hold on to lies, but now that we have the internet, it is too easy to both validate and debunk claims. Yeah, some will avoid and deny what is presented, but do not ever loose heart. Brace yourself. It is a long term battle. There is no way of getting around it. It is effectively "trench warfare" of media and information. We libreals have the numbers, and so we must simply take the time to engage in these online debates, because you never know who else is reading your comments. Word gets around. Trust the viral nature of the online medium. Social consciousness is changing far quicker than people realize due to the net. People's perceptions are not as fixed as they like to claim they are. You are planting seeds that might take decades to root out and sprout, but it might take far sooner. Do not loose heart. We are making a difference, with every comment on any online forum.

    * Move Sooner ~ Not Faster *

    by ArthurPoet on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:42:26 PM PST

  •  It's really simple (0+ / 0-)

    You can't fix stupid.

  •  Face Book (0+ / 0-)

    Sorry, I can't be a member of something called facebook.

  •  The Paradox of Choice (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz

    This is a classic example of the paradox of choice.  Offered too many choices, people become bewildered or anxious.  Anyone with first hand exposure to supervising small children soon learns to limit the choices offered to them.  You may have 12 flavours of yoghurt in the fridge, but if you offer a small child a free choice, you'll be there for half an hour.  Give them a choice of two and they still have a sense of agency, and you'll get a snap decision.  My response would have run along the lines:

    "Well, I was thinking Glenn Beck.  Or maybe Paul Ryan."

    Both are charlatan's charlatans.  I'm sure there are many others, but you need to limit the choices.

    Tony.

    quis custodiet ipsos custodes -- Juvenal VI, 347-8

    by golem on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 03:54:27 PM PST

  •  Distillation (0+ / 0-)

    Perhaps you could condense it to:

    The State of Stupid.

    Untamed, unashamed Liberal still living in the wild.

    by 13Friday on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 04:06:18 PM PST

  •  If conservatives weren't intellectually lazy (2+ / 0-)

    They wouldn't be conservative. They've adopted perpetual  victimhood and reflexive denial almost as a religion. Why bother reading and trying to understand what you say when they know they are going to disagree with whatever it is, just because it's you saying it?

    "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

    by MargaretPOA on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 04:31:46 PM PST

  •  Walk on - you nailed him (0+ / 0-)

    His response is basically the FB equivalent of Charlie Sheen's "WINNING!"

  •  This kind of communication isn't easy to respond (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz

    to, but there are some ways to go about it.  

    The key strategy overall is Sow Doubt.  There's a lot of Certainty among the right wing, a certainty generated & reinforced by their durable & voluminous echo chambers.  Many of these people aren't stupid; they've been trained to be stupid, they've been dumbed down.  They have made the mistake of trusting RWNJ media personalities & so-called news.  

    Asking who the charlatan is misses the point.  The key point upon which all this is based is that these cons clearly value Carl Sagan's viewpoint, in just the same way they all lay claim to MLK Jr. or Abe Lincoln.  Any exemplary American MUST ALSO be an exemplary CONSERVATIVE; this is an iron rule.  (Well, this is a rule if they are spinning the message; if they aren't, then they shut up about whoever, or in the case of FOX, they make that person a Democract.)  

    So, to me, there's an opportunity in pointing out who Carl Sagan was: a dedicated environmentalist who urged serious discussion about, among other things, global overpopulation.  Try quoting Sagan at them.  See what happens.  (Make sure your quotes are accurate!) If you can make clear that Sagan's agin' 'em, you have sown doubt.  And that's all you can do; you can't change anyone's mind, but simply provide the opportunity for them to do it themselves, and THAT is worthwhile, if personally unrewarding in the short term.

    It's time to start letting sleeping dinosaurs lie, lest we join them in extinction by our consumption of them.

    by Leftcandid on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 04:43:07 PM PST

    •  I actually had prepared for that (0+ / 0-)

      I had expected at first read of the original post from my actual friend that he was going after Al Gore. not Obama.

      because of the science connection and the 'charlatan' who must be subjected to 'healthy skepticism' which were the words chosen in my real friend's OP.

      which is why I asked him to tell me who he thought Sagan had been so 'prophetic' about.

      I had already googled and found a great video from Sagan flatly stating that global warming was a very dangerous and serious issue we needed to confront immediately in 1990!
      He left no doubt as to the reality of the data or the conclusions to be drawn from it.

      I was so ready! I did not expect this other loony out of nowhere to start cursing at me and refusing to answer. Then it became about getting his answer.

      and by the time the 'nice' guy showed up, that wasn't even an issue any more. it was ALL about Obama.

      no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

      by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 08:43:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  "Executive summary" is what they call it (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jake formerly of the LP, martini

    in the business world.  Then the execs can go around quoting something in order to sound smart, but without fully understanding the particular rules and facts that go into that summary (which might not apply to different facts.)

    My Karma just ran over your Dogma

    by FoundingFatherDAR on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 04:44:51 PM PST

  •  Conservatism: a mix of partisanship and bad faith (0+ / 0-)

    Thus if what you are looking for is a rational discussion or someone admitting to anything, you stand better chance to get either with a 2"x4" than a conservative!

    There is NOTHING to gain other than utmost frustration from engaging with a conservative partisan armed with nothing but bad faith!

  •  I know people will throw things at me for (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz, Darth Stateworker

    mentioning the other N word.

    But part of the Third Reich's 1930 version of shock and awe was to attack intellectuals and intellectualism and foment violence against "others".

    The Nazi wanted ovine followers not people who would actually ask questions and think about the complexities of reality.

    There are  patterns today that waddle and quack a lot like ones I read about in the almost two decades of history classes in public school and college, and since.

    Frankly I find it very ominous.  The Dims need to grow those still back bones Palin talks about, and we need to stand behind them and push.

    Just one national election that puts the R's in charge of the whole national gov and they will alter reality.  If you think Texas and SC are la la lands.  It could get much worse and get there in the blink of an eye.

  •  Tell him the truth (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jan4insight, srfRantz, Black Max

    "It's OK. I know you're weak-minded to think about these sorts of things and try to reply to them. And I'm sure your customers will be interested to know this as well."

      And then ignore anything else he may say, and block him. See, you're not saying these things to convince this shrivel-d*ck to see things your way- his type doesn't have the guts. But you should expose him as the loser he is to the casual bystander, to kill any resemblance of authority that middle-aged men like him believe they're entitled to.

       You can't fix stupid, so don't try. Just try to keep the outbreak of stupid contained and quarantined.

  •  you're right about limbaugh and i like to ask them (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    martini, Black Max

    this when it goes there:

    to idiot: can you tell me anything major limbaugh has been right about? anything?

    if they do come up with anything, it's a starting point for fact checking as opposed to the usual blabbering

    me getting through to a local RW host:

    hey bob, i'd like to suggest a topic for a future show to celebrate the last 20 or so years of rush - get the listeners to call in and start a list of all the major stuff rush has been right about....... well, on second thought that might be a very short show.

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 06:27:29 PM PST

  •  Wow (4+ / 0-)
    He went from that level of 'civility' to saying things like 'I'm too busy right now giving your old lady anal to answer.
     I don't know why I am surprised, that's the way a lot of Republicans talk to others.

    Where are all the jobs, Boehner?

    by Dirtandiron on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 06:32:51 PM PST

  •  Thinking about what it would be like to be dumb (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz

    Group think makes sense to me.  If someone is stupid, it's tough to identify who is smart and what is right around them.  After all, they are stupid.  Having trouble identifying right answers is the definition of stupid (to me).  Given the circumstance of being stupid it makes sense that the stupid would engage in groupthink, and huddle together.  One basic survival strategy is to hang with the group.  Life can be hard, and the world is infinitely complicated.

    Thus I find the best way of guiding the stupid is to show them where the group is, and convince them that the group has moved on from whatever stupid thought was thought.  In this case I'm not seeing a case to be made that will convince the stupid easily.  After all, Sagan is really talking to smarter people in the audience of humanity, and this particular clip is a bit meta and high concept.  His brilliance was making the discoveries of science palatable and interesting for the masses, but still, when topics get remotely complicated, stupid has trouble, by definition.

    Don't feel sad.  People are people and there will always be stupid people and smart people.  I personally don't think there was a way to bring people to the light on that interaction.  They just want to feel safe and like they are part of a group.  Pooping on the group just brings out the group and forces then close together.

    Anyway yea bullet points are about all people can handle these days.  

    /standard disclosure this is not meant as criticism.  Just sharing thoughts.

    When we talk about war, we're really talking about peace.

    by genethefiend on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 07:08:53 PM PST

    •  It's funny, you could post this on a RW (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      srfRantz, genethefiend

      site and everyone there would assume you're talking about the left.  Both sides share the same thought about the other. The other side is stupid.  

      If I comply with non-compliance am I complying?

      by thestructureguy on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 08:59:50 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  its funny because its true (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        genethefiend

        I get called stupid all the time. usually after an especially well written, researched, linked and annotated slam dunk argument.
        LOL.

        no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

        by srfRantz on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 09:09:46 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yea but I got a 1520 on my SAT (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        thestructureguy

        When it was out of 1600 and passed the bar without really studying, so I've got some feedback from the world that I'm not a total towel.

        You never know when your wrong, but planes do fly and shite gets done.  Failed policies are failures.  See the results in your red vs blue state teen pregnancy and graduation rates.

        Still, your point stands.

        When we talk about war, we're really talking about peace.

        by genethefiend on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 09:24:26 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  My friend. Be careful on setting the standard by (0+ / 0-)

          SAT scores for not being stupid.  Bill O'Reilly's was 1585 so does that mean you are stupid compared to him?  And as far as the bar passage on the first time I know plenty of lawyers that did as well and they can't litigate themselves out of a paper bag. Alabama's bar passage last year was 91 percent for ABA approved schools.  Are they smarter than CA grads at 61 percent? Being educated and smart doesn't necessarily correlate. You can be ignorant of something but be very smart as well as very educated but still stupid.  

          If I comply with non-compliance am I complying?

          by thestructureguy on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 07:07:16 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Pointy-headed should be hyphenated, btw (0+ / 0-)

    ...what did you expect from provoking them like that?!

  •  A sentence or two is all they can handle (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Black Max

    You went far beyond their ability to persist toward understanding. They have been conditioned to go for the quick information, not something that to them drags on and on and on.



    Women create the entire labor force.
    ---------------------------------------------
    Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

    by splashy on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 07:34:17 PM PST

  •  Actually (0+ / 0-)

    I think a sixty-year-old who writes 'I'm too busy right now giving your old lady anal to answer' is pretty cool. Though it's not as good as the AOL chatroom guy who told me 'Satan awaits your mother's arrival in hell, so that his dog can mate.'

  •  You were quite clear (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Black Max

    and what you wrote was well condensed already. If they are too stupid or lazy to understand it, well...

    Power to the Peaceful!

    by misterwade on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 08:36:46 PM PST

  •  Oh, the Facebook "conversations" I've had (0+ / 0-)

    I went 'round and 'round and 'round about the Duck Dynasty guy.

    To summarize: I hate freedom, and I don't have any respect for religious people.

    Oh well.

  •  the weirdest question I've ever been asked (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    I work at the Claremont Branch of the Berkeley Public Library. I got a call from someone who wanted information about the Montclair Branch of the Oakland Public Library, which is a few miles away. I offered to give the caller the phone number of the Montclair Branch. He wouldn't hear of it. I was just being lazy, not doing my job. He continued to ask questions I couldn't really answer - not even by consulting the Montclair Library's website.

    Finally, angrily, he said, "Montclair, Claremont, what's the difference?"

    ...

    •  We do get the crazy questions at Reference :) (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LuvSet

      http://odin.indstate.edu/...

      I've been asked to interpret people's dreams, to explain the meaning of Harry Chapin's "Cat's in the Cradle" and advise on pecan pie recipes (which is hilarious in my case since my cooking expertise could fit in a thimble), and there was something about the connection between Endor in Star Wars and the witches of Endor in the Bible that escapes my mind at the moment, but ...

      •  Congratulations. I'd thought after years of (0+ / 0-)

        reading Overdue/Unshelved that the stories were a bit farfetched at times (civilian not a Librarian), you just proved however that Gene & Bill are being way nicer than they have to be about library patrons. If it's any consolation IT tech support have our share of gems.

  •  In other words, he said... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Darth Stateworker

    "GO AWAY, BAITIN'!!!"

  •  Two schools of thought on this for me: (0+ / 0-)

    1) It's an opportunity to reach the lurkers who are "on the fence" to one degree or another about the issue at hand, reading the thread but not posting. While he's throwing shitbombs about giving your old lady anal (what an incredibly nasty thing to say), you're answering graciously and calmly, stating your position well and providing facts to bolster your position. You won't get Anal Boy to agree with anything you say, particularly as he's too stick-stupid to follow your arguments or even understand your words, but you might make inroads with someone else.

    2) If you know him in real life, you kick his flabby ass for insulting your wife. If not, you tear him a new one and block him.

    Both have their advantages and disadvantages

  •  I just had a similar encounter on Facebook. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz, Amber6541, Kanscott

    While perusing the diaries on DK on Christmas, I came across one, A War on Christmas that Christmas (finally) Won, that I found really fascinating and quite revealing. As a Unitarian, it especially hit home because it told how members of my religion were the first Americans to celebrate Christmas, a surprising fact that was hitherto unknown to me.

    So I decided to share it on Facebook. After an hour or so, I noticed in my notifications that someone had responded to the post. It was from an in-law who I've maybe met once at  a reunion. He began his tirade by calling the article a 'bunch of crap', and the author 'a twat'. He said all the points the diary can be 'biblically refuted'.

    In my opinion, the diary was not a knock on Christianity in any way. It was simply a historical account on how Christmas came to celebrated in America. I asked my in-law why he took offense to it, but he never responded. In fact, he decided later to take the post down, and then, delete and block me. I was just left scratching my head wondering what bee flew up his bonnet...

    •  I would venture to guess he never actually read (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Darth Stateworker, joelal

      the diary.  It often goes down this way:  "How dare you share an article from the communist Daily Kos about Christmas; judging by the source, it obviously is full of librul lies 'bout Christmas.  No way I'm reading that!"

      After you asked which bee flew up his bonnet, so to speak, he likely then skimmed through the diary in search of blatant examples to support such a heated outburst on his part.  When the diary actually failed to meet his expectation of a communist manifesto, he may have felt humiliated (if that is possible) and instead decided to get rid of the only reminder of the incident ever occurring: you.

  •  One factor that I've been forced to (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Apost8, srfRantz, Amber6541

    contend with in my own life...  What if these people are not telling you the truth?  What if they are not sincere?  What if they know exactly what they are doing, what they are spinning, the characters of who they choose to quote, the evidence that refutes their statements, etc.?

    There are people in this world that do not have a conscience or a capacity for empathy.  They do not seek understanding but the opposite.  They simply get off on playing games, harming people, harming relationships, harming society, etc.  That describes Rush Limbaugh   and his fervent followers I believe.  I have known some of these followers and they are themselves bullies hiding under a facade of normalcy.  

    Once I came to understand this and to attempt to steer clear of these types of people if at all possible I found myself hitting my head against the wall of their cynical manipulations a lot less.

    Now the paradox enters into the discussion.  I think what you are doing, engaging the lies, standing up to them is absolutely necessary.  We all need to do this every single chance we get.  Once we accept the obligation and begin to practice how to do it in the most effective way we will make a huge difference as I am sure you have.  It is the non sociopaths that will observe the interaction that will be changed.  That is our goal.  I have seen this over and over again.  Also we have to have incredible patience and determination.

    Do not lose heart.  You will never convert a sociopath to normalcy but you will change the minds of normals and you won't know about it.  Just have faith.

    •  Knowing twistedness... (0+ / 0-)

      I've read each post in the whole thread to date. I suspect that there is a subtlety at work here that partly explains why THIS thread (the FB one, not the DKOS) so confounded your conversational expectations.  

      One tactic we've seen from the right - often subtly, sometimes not so much so - is to take a "pre-emptive" shot at a clearly liberal-leaning basic concept (you know, "reality's liberal bias") by creatively contorting a corollary that points in the opposite direction from any sincere reflection on the discussion's source material. In a subtle fashion, this works as a mental inoculation against any obvious corollaries that could lead to a deeper case of cognitive dissonance.

      In this case, we can make a pretty safe assumption that the original FB poster who first shared the Sagan quote (newly appropriated as a wink-wink roll-your-own anti-Obama dig) knew of Sagan's respectable intellectual chops and his lionized place in the marketplace of ideas - and felt that if Sagan's quote wasn't now "neutralized" by an audacious claim counter to its clear current application, it would continue to be a useful progressive point. In what the poster may even have thought of as a moment of mischief, the anti-corollary could be created and could thereby possibly displace the true corollary.

      And that's what happened. Again, this process has some resemblance to the process by which some anti-cancer vaccines work: a "killed" version of a pathogen (in this case, the potentially-contagious progressive idea is likened to a pathogen because of its undesirability and infectiousness) is injected into the bloodstream / thoughtstream, and "binds" to willing receptors in a way that serves to keep the undesired annoying symptoms of cognitive dissonance at bay.

      Was MLK a nascent Republican? That vaccine has been out for a while. Can the mowing down of schoolchildren be best prevented by spittle-flecked screams demanding more, more, more guns? That one too.

      Personally, I suspect that the unsettling social posturing that srfRantz observed - immediate refusal to engage in any real discourse, dissembling taunts, obscene crudity - was the "fever" that followed the right-wing relief of recognizing this inoculation for just what it was...and CHOOSING to run with it.

      In my opinion, THIS is the right-wing mental self-poison that needs to be seen, understood, and countered. Ain't gonna be easy.

      Thanks, srfRantz, for your observations. I know my comments here are a little late to the party...

  •  Continuing in the tone of the conversation.... (0+ / 0-)

    You should have simply said, "I think Rush Limbaugh is an example of the charlatan".

    If you're in a conversation in which just a few sentences constitute each response, and then suddenly you write a huge paragraph, you come off like Francisco d'Anconia giving his long speech about money in the middle of a banal conversation at a banal party.

  •  We call them fucking stupid for a reason (0+ / 0-)

    and you have cataloged the distillation of the essence of that reason.

    They ARE fucking stupid.

  •  I'm the only old lady in my building. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    I work late hours and sometimes find myself talking to one of my young neighbors as I'm coming in from work.

    A couple of times I've mentioned that I think many of our current problems with bigotry and mean-spirited obstinance will pass when people my age finish dying off.  Each time I've said this, the young guy I'm talking to laughs and seems to relax.  

    I get the feeling that it is well-understood among the young that the ditto-heads of my generation are the problem. Because of the disgrace that the preening ignoramuses my age have brought upon our cohort, I've stopped expecting anyone young to show me civility, much less talk to me.  

    But I have renewed my determination not to waste any time interacting with the dittos and their ilk. Instead I will be spending the rest of my days learning what I can leave behind that will help the young when they can finally begin cleaning up the mess we are leaving them.

    •  Sorry ma'am (0+ / 0-)

      But the ditto heads are in my generation and younger too, and I'm only 31. Definitely the older ones are a big part of the problem, but we've got continuing contamination in the younger generations. A HS friend, who like myself is a liberal posted comments regarding our current politicians here in Australia and the disgrace they committed towards the first territory or state here to legalize same sex marriage (they took it to court and won, illegitimizing the legislation. Then his post got jumped by a 27 YO from Iowa, and a tween from WI for it based on their religious doctrine. sighs, note the first one is a far from perfect Christian having committed a few sins that she herself has riled against repeatedly ie sex before marriage.

      They're way too concerned about what everyone else is doing instead of focusing on their own problems. It's one of the few times I didn't jump in to support him because I've known the elder long enough to know it's a waste of breath (she nearly got me kicked out of a game [I quit instead knowing where it was going since I was involved with a member of the staff] for getting a couple of other players to talk to each other and settle their differences publically instead of whining to me about it).

  •  The responder has just nailed the problem for you (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz, Amber6541

    You might point out that he's identified the real problem, which is that some (most) issues are too complex to be discussed by throwing slogans back and forth.  They require real conversations to make any sense of them.

    You could tell him that anyone explaining a complicated issue to him in 3 sentences or less is lying to him and attempting to manipulate him, because 3 sentences is only enough words to push emotional buttons, not enough to discuss a complex issue intelligently.

    If you like, you could also point out to him how lazy everyone seems to be these days -  passing around "thoughtlets" they've acquired verbatim from someone else, without making even the slightest effort to look into it at all.  Why is it that people feel strongly enough about something to post it on facebook, yet don't feel strongly enough about it to try to find out what it's really all about?  How lazy do you have to be to do that, in the age of instant web searches?

  •  They read what you wrote (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz

    The response was, "Nerd!"

    The response was intended to invoke the playground, just as much as the "I'm too busy with your mother/wife" was. Most of them are intended to revert to "I am big, and you are small, and I will fight you," whether it's true or not. However, the others will be, "Nobody likes you, because you're a nerd."

    When they say that, they read what you wrote. You made them feel stupid. They don't like that.

    Everyone's innocent of some crime.

    by The Geogre on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 06:25:53 AM PST

    •  I see the playground all the time (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Geogre

      I saw it here instantly with the first guy being so insulting right from the get go. Knew he'd been a bully since 1st grade and knew nothing else. he was stuck at about 4th grade bullying. How he had led a life as an adult was amazing to me. Kind of why I persisted briefly with him.

      My simply asking the first question, the 2nd post in the thread in fact, was enough to set him off. I had questioned the thoughts/beliefs of the OP and him.
      That could not be allowed to continue, if he was to remain the biggest baddest asshole in the schoolyard.

      again I was moved to write about it because this was at a level of 'no discourse at all even allowed' that'd I'd never run into before

      and the other guy's final comments such a bold admitting that "I'm too stupid to understand you so you must be wrong. I'm tuning you out now" that although the end result had happened before, admitting openly like that just floored me.

      a submissive bully-follower hanger-on if there ever was one. one of the Simpson's Nelson's little gang. ha-ha!
      http://youtu.be/...

      no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

      by srfRantz on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 07:22:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I understood your rant perfectly. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    Welcome to the dumbing down of the American people thanks to the likes of Rupert Murdock and his ilk - this is just sad, and frankly doesn't bode well for our future.  I don't know how you respond.  

    The GOP will destroy anything they can't own.

    by AnnieR on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 07:15:00 AM PST

  •  The Reader they Needed in First Grade (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srfRantz

    See Stan read. Can you read? Do you read?

    Stan can read. See Stan think. Stan can read and think. Stan likes to think.

    Do you like to think? Do you like to read?  

    Hear Stan speak. He can read. He can think. He can speak.

    You can speak. Do you read first? Do you think first?

    Stan reads first. Stan thinks first. Then Stan speaks.

    "The Trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you're still a rat." attributed to Lily Tomlin

    by uniqity on Fri Dec 27, 2013 at 09:14:52 AM PST

  •  Bigotry and misogyny is all they have left... (0+ / 0-)

    Look, when you lose everything and need to hate to feel better, what do you do? Especially if the IQ is around 40.

    You resort to the expected and lifelong bigotry and expected misogyny. You hope for more gerrymandering. If you can't lie anymore, hatred and cheating is all there is. That and not reading anything which might challenge you, like facts or numbers that add up correctly or something.

    Trying to communicate with these few remaining weirdos is guaranteed frustration. They are not good readers anyway. Addition and subtraction throw these few into a tizzy. They don't want to think and never have---why start now? Everyone who has tried communicating with this odd club of unbalanced people has found the same thing. They don't want to hear facts and don't want to know any. That is why they should not vote. They don't have basic comprehension skills. They are also not "conservative" about anything. The term does not apply. They must have ditched "Republican" when the entire country began ridiculing them and voting out their more extreme losers, like deadbeat daddy Joe Walsh.

    Facebook is known for its collection of whackos who leap in to spew hate which is unrelated to any topic being discussed at the time. Do you think these creatures are at work when they spend all this time trolling around, seeking females to stalk on Facebook? Don't think so.

    Let's focus on un-electing their fringe collection of ignorant, unbalanced, corrupt, tax-supported office-occupants. Let's not engage in fruitless discussions with people who have severe issues about everything American.

    www.USA.gov   Make your voice heard to your current Congress member. Why not?

    •  Green Party (0+ / 0-)

      Although I agree with the opinion of Republicans being gerrymandering, I would have to say there is a justified reason why Barack Obama is considered to be a charlatan as well. Our President called the U.S. military HIS military in passing by way of his own ego. This is one of the reasons why I believe that the Democratic party as a whole is just as much part of the problem (rather than the solution) as Republicans are. Republicans have more of a hand in it but Democrats are just as political funds driven as the GOP. They do what they want and rebut on campaign promises just as much as those across the aisle do. They bullied "Obamacare" into law without any real understanding or clarity behind the laws, the website roll-out was a joke... and though I applaud their stand against the bully tactics of the Republican party, the inability to work together across party lines has hurt our country more than, dare I say, George W.'s war for oil. As a country we need to wake up and look at the OTHER candidates that Democratic & Republican controlled media do not want us to even hear the voices of. This past election, Dr. Jill Stein and her running mate of the Green Party were arrested for attempting to attend the presidential debates! A PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, whom was ON THE BALLOT on many different states with a platform to not only create jobs but also restart the U.S. with a Green Technology based economy, focusing on boosting ourselves into an industrial boom and helping our environment; WAS ARRESTED FOR TRYING TO ATTEND THE 2012 UNITED STATES PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION DEBATES! Not only was Dr. Stein arrested but NOT ONE MAJOR MEDIA OUTLET COVERED THE STORY! ... It would seem that our country's government has already taken over control of our lives and Carl Sagan's fears have already come true.

  •  My rule of thumb (0+ / 0-)

    I never argue with anyone who believes the universe and the earth are only 5000 years old. Never argue with a person who believes in trickle down economics. And never ever argue with a dominionist who believes Christians are mandated to control the earth, politics and all of its institutions until the 2nd coming of Jesus. Right Wingers say the Bible is God's Word to defend their positions, pervert the Bible's messages to advance their agenda and then argue from false premises.

  •  Just more evidence of the stupidity, delusions and (0+ / 0-)

    willful ignorance of the 'right.'
    I've been trying to decide since 1979 or so whether the GOP were evil, or just hopelessly stupid. In most cases, I'm going with the latter. (For the voters, anyway. The elected pols? Pure evil.)

    Don't use Jesus as an excuse to be a greedy, narrow-minded, bigoted asshole.

    by GammaRae on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 11:15:51 AM PST

  •  My Old Friend (0+ / 0-)

    I have a friend of 20 years standing who turned "ranter" the moment Obama was elected. The funny thing about her is that prior to 2008, she was a fairly liberal Democrat concerned about the environment, voting rights, etc. Since the 2008 election, she's become an illogical ranter on the subject of immigration rights, gun ownership rights, Muslims, and of course Barack Obama. I can only attribute this reaction either to pure racism since her current stances do not reflect her previous general beliefs or to her relatively new, bull-headed, gun-toting third husband. No, it's not that he's a hunter. I am but as far as I can see, the only thing he practices hunting are homo sapiens. He's holing up for Armageddon.

    I miss my friend. Now we can only "safely" talk about her kids, my kid, cooking, and our health.

  •  Further summary (0+ / 0-)

    Personally, in response to him playing dumb as I am more than certain he was only playing dumb and being lazy, I would have summed it up into two groups: Fox News and Tea-Party Republicans. Maybe that would've been specific and condensed enough for him.

  •  RWNJs (0+ / 0-)

    You have my sympathy. It's hard to argue with idiots when facts do not sway them and reality does not touch them. And besides, one of their own literally wrote the book. In their bubble, beliefs outweigh realities, and faith, no matter how falsely placed or in which fallacy, outweighs everything.

    Any opinion that is not simply a regurgitation of their own, no matter how well-grounded and fact-based, is taken as a ranting affront to their beliefs, and a challenge to their faith -- which again, is almost always placed in fallacies.

    The illuminating, lucid genius of Carl Sagan will never mean as much them as the brain dead abyss of Glenn Beck's chalk board or the vile depths of a vomitous Limbaugh rampage.

  •  A belief system is unimportant (0+ / 0-)

    What counts is the ability to think critically and scientific and remove all the extraneous material associate to any unfounded principle: from the Bible to Ayn Rand. These are charlatans who attack rational being and make them into puppets in quest of an immortality that does not exist.

  •  Silence is Golden (0+ / 0-)

    I've found that when a situation like this arises (forums, chat, similar), simply ceasing to reply is often the way to win. If you began the conversation, it helps tremendously if your post were clear, sensible, and lacking in exaggeration, hostility, profanity, sarcasm and the like. If you started the conversation and were angry or sarcastic, a response to an unpleasant response which clears up (or at least tries to) any misunderstandings (which there generally are anyway: we all read and understand things differently) and apologizes for anything you said which "went overboard" puts you in the winning spot as far as anyone intelligent and reasonable goes--and, honestly, who cares about the rest? If you think that adding facts, links to relevant articles/data which support what you assert, would at least make your argument well grounded, sure, go ahead; but if you can see already that you're dealing with someone who loves taking advantage of the nature of this kind of communication to let "all the anger out," realize that the only people who will appreciate your effort will be those who feel the way you do or like having facts: you won't have made any headway with the hysterical individual(s).

    Once the conversation gets out-of-control ugly, the "last word wins" mentality kicks in. You're not going to win that, neither will your friends. Stopping the process by being the better/bigger man/woman is, in my opinion, the best way to "win" in this ridiculous scenario. (It's especially fun in chat because cause and effect are immediately apparent and generally the pissed off person will post several times into the silence, knowing you're right there and expecting something back--as the attempts to egg you on continue they get more and more outrageous, making him look increasingly doofy and pathetic.) Anything you reply with will get a nasty response. You stop the exchange; you win.

    This does not only apply to people who are being sweary and irrational. There are conversations where you and the opposing person(s) have opinions shared by others--hence the "well, I'm not the only one; that's the way it has been forever" type comments; that your arguments are based in fact (I'm assuming they are) and not belief systems (religion for the most part) or lack of/disinterest in facts may well still stand no chance of making any headway.

    Recognizing the futility of the situation is what the smart person does: the wingnut (see urbandictionary.com) will keep poking as long as there's something to poke at.

    The author Paul McAuley said something à propos in his novel whole wide world:

    "Life's too short to get into arguments with people you cannot argue with, because their beliefs, not being based on reason, are immune to it."
    That wraps up what I had to say on the topic. I'm adding an example of an in-between scenario (which still necessitated shutdown) for those interested.

    • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

    I watched on YouTube not long ago the performance that got three of Pussy Riot's members in trouble with the Russian government, a result of my reading about the release of the last two.

    I checked out some of the comments (don't we all?) and was surprised (at first) to see how many hysterical rants (and their almost inevitably pissy responses) or short and nasty posts there were. (Religion appeared to be almost universally the motivation for the screeching hoard.)

    I was thinking about writing something (and most likely would have not, since I don't know that it changes anything and my time's better spent elsewhere), but a short (a few sentences) post (fully belief-based) with a reply that referenced Martin Luther caught my eye and that pushed me into replying myself.

    635 words later ... well, I was reasonable and polite and got pithy responses like "True." as well as a brief, polite, but "well,-I think-you're-wrong-anyway" response from the initial poster which blissfully soared over all my facts and references.

    I could have gone back and told him what he had missed, deliberately (would have been tempted to say "jerk" but know that's tossing a torch in a tar pit) or unintentionally ("idiot," same caveats) but that's where, for me, it's clear I've hit the McAuley limit on continued discourse.

    So, zhere u r, i hope helpful, 2 many words i know--717--cya (chattalk)!

  •  A short sentence or two without all the fluff (0+ / 0-)

    Do you have such a sentence, sfRantz? I think it's always a good idea to have one, like the infamous elevator pitch.

    Someone once criticized the claim that Reagan was a doddering old man acting at being President. He said that Reagan had a clear agenda with 4 points that he cojuld put into one sentence in less than a minute: get the govt off our backs, reduce taxes, and I don't remember the other two.

    As a progressive, I like your effort to carry on a conversation with the man and his fellow aggressors. I like your hanging in there in the presence of tons of abuse.

    My big question about your narrative is what was the opponents' view of your effort to conduct this conversation? For example, maybe they perceived you as a "liberal evangelist" who was out to convert them from thoughts, feelings, and commitments that were dear to them?

    As much as a number of voices designate the conservatives as trolls, maybe the other participants in your conversation saw you as a troll and were on the defensive almost as soon as you started.

    We need more efforts like yours to bridge this gap between RW and LW. We need to find ways that work. It'll probably take quite a while to design that bridge and longer to build it.

    Thanks for giving us a case that we can study to see whether anything at all reached across this RW-LW divide and if so, whether we can build on it. If we can't build on it, what would the Thomas Edisons of negotiating in ths community suggest as a next step? That is, how can we see this conversation not as a failure, but as guidance for future conversations?

  •  The last time I ran into an Ayn Rand worshipper (0+ / 0-)

    we were riding the city bus and she extolled the virtues of the public library.

    Yeah, think on that for a second.

    edwardlcote.blogspot.com

    by Edward L Cote on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 01:29:34 PM PST

  •  Just accept that you can't fix stupid.... (0+ / 0-)

    "What we have here is a failure to communicate"...and it is willful on the con side, a version of children sticking fingers in their ears and saying "lalalalalalala". So, not only can you not fix stupid, but you can no longer communicate with most of those on the con side at all. What he called a "rant" was a thoughtful response to a question. His response was a refusal even to read your post since he had predetermined that he disagreed with anything you might say. Does not bode well for moving discussions forward.

  •  Carl Sagan is roiling in his grave. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    belinda ridgewood

    I'm amazed at people I know who think that science and scientists are looking for money--not truth, not knowledge.  I hope you can stand your friends after this, Stan.

    "Still a man hears what he wants to hear/and disregards the rest..."  Paul Simon

  •  Similar experience (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    belinda ridgewood

    A similar encounter, personal not written, ended when the Conservative I was debating said, "I bet you have a degree don't you?" All further conversation was deemed useless.

  •  underground (0+ / 0-)

    as a comfortably middle class white woman of a certain age in the DEEP south, I liken my liberal tendencies to being in the French Resistance. One dare not speak it's name. In addition, I'm in sales. The vitriol I have heard as casual chit chat during business meetings is shocking. The ironic thing is as another poster pointed out, there are a good many decent older white folks, even in the south, that want equal rights for all, decent health care, and a safety net that will take care of the 'least of us'. The problem is we get drowned out and demonized by the Obama haters which makes them seem more powerful than they actually are. There are two sections that we must beware of - the anti-tax & mostly anti-government types that are in lockstep with dear old Grover and want to drown the gubmint in the bathtub, and the uneducated Fox watchers who parrot one lie after the other and shoot themselves in the foot doing it. Slowly we keep trying to whisper to them that they are the 47% the repubs hate. They don't believe it though.

  •  I JUST DEFRIENDED A Chap TODAY (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    portlandzoo

    I've been putting up with his right wing name calling for over a year. I kept trying to engage him and get him to post something that might look like an opposing argument loaded with facts but all I ver go was nya nya nya commie, socialist, factist, nazi retard. I triedd to get him to define those terms. I pointed out that it is impossible for anyone to logically be all those things at the same time. I had decided not to defriend him because if I did, he would have "won." His name calling was supposed to make me and my ideas go away. But today I posted an article from Entrepreneur about the benefits of not spending time with toxic people http://www.entrepreneur.com/...  and he posted this crazy rant saying I was busted cause my posting a link to an article from a magazine called Entrepreneur was like the NAACP posting a like link to the KKK. This was remark so STUPID.  I can't believe someone would think that because someone owns a business  they can't also be a liberal, like the two can't coexist in the same person. There person is seriously stupid. I never thought that participating in an economy was the same thing as participating in a cult. Every time I pressed back asking for definitions or explanations of his "beliefs", he couldn't do it. This was  from a guy who's 65 or so and supposedly owns his own business! He is completely unable to destruct his thoughts and lay them out in rational pattern. He could only say juvenile things he must have heard from Rush. So I gave up. His final remark to me was I was just like a liberal, when I don't want to hear something I don't agree with I just run off. No, I have better things to do. Intelligent arguments or consturctive and fun but this guy was STUPID and ABUSIVE. I decided to stop spending time with toxic people.

  •  It is Unfortunate (0+ / 0-)

    That folks no longer use critical thinking skills. They hear a sound bite and without even determining if it's true or not pass it around like it's gospel. No one bothers to use the internet to determine the truth anymore, they scour for one line insults they can hurl at others and care very little for the truth of the matter. Name calling and bullying are the order of the day.

    Stan, you were quite brave to go out there and try to post your opinion. You had to know that you would be denigrated simply for posting.

    When did we as a society decide it was no longer ok to agree to disagree?

    We are the result of 4 billion years of evolution…act like it.

    by ntsinback on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 02:45:07 PM PST

  •  Dealing with RWNJ's (0+ / 0-)

    Rule 1) Logic does not work.  Do not try.  They base everything on emotion and distrust logic (watch Idiocrosy)

    Rule 2) Keep all mesages and communications to short and simple words.

    These are people that are proud of their ignorance.

    Reagan taught us what morons respond to.

    The morons are not going away.

    Democrats would be wise to incorporate these methods to bring morons to our side.

    •  saddest and truest RW comment (0+ / 0-)

      I'm sorry this happened -- I find many conservatives viciously lash out before listening, even. My question is:  Do you think this person would necessarily know who Sagan was? The fact that these types elevate their dittohead non-think above any communication requiring give-and-take is indicative of their self-serving arrogance. Solipsistic Arrogant Dopes! S.A.D., indeed!

    •  I'm your Huckleberry (0+ / 0-)

      I'll argue you won't find much thoughtful conservative conversation here because there's not much other than projection and ridicule to be found -- you have acronyms for your pejoratives.  There's a better class of commenter at Salon.com, but not much.

      If you're game I am.  Test me.  You pick the topic.  

      I'm fairly sure you know 100 things about me and 97 aren't correct.

  •  BEWARE OF FALSE PROPHETS! (0+ / 0-)

    "Time and time again does the pride of man influence his very own fall. While denying it, one gradually starts to believe that he is the authority, or that he possesses great moral dominion over others, yet it is spiritually unwarranted. By that point, he loses steam; in result, he begins trying to prove that unwarranted dominion by seizing the role of a condemner." [Criss Jami, "Salome: In Every Inch In Every Mile"]

  •  Hard to have a conversation... (0+ / 0-)

    With an anti-intellectual brainwash victim.

    If you like bicycles, check out the newest and coolest products at my site, "ZiggyboyBullet.com." You can also find my products at e-Bay under the name, "Ziggyboy." See all the products on my "See seller's other items" link.

    by JohnnieZ on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 02:58:01 PM PST

  •  Right wing adolescence (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wblynch

    Anyone from the left that uses social media has to have experienced the vitriolic discourse displayed by ardent Obama haters.  If you think the election of Obama drove them nearly mad, then you know the re-election of Obama drove them to dizzying heights of demon possession and Linda Blair style green vomiting of cacophony.  They don't seem to care who's watching any more.  They're openly and shamefully candid with their choice of language.  I've also observed that this is no longer just any Obama rebuttal, but anything remotely left: Trayvon Martin, Benghazi, Phil Robertson, gun control, gay rights, and the coup de gras to ignite the hellfires of conservatism; Obamacare.  I personally unfriended 30 of them in one day.  Some were close friends and business associates.  But I finally got sick of their constantly pissing acid on my family pages, and removed all the tension they created with one stroke of the mouse.  I recommend it highly.  They won't even know you're gone.

  •  Make It Simpler? (0+ / 0-)

    You could praise them for being as intelligent as George "W" Bush.  They'll think it is high praise, to be on his level.  Given his well-known level of curiosity and ability to read an actual newspaper article, or book - not a comic book.

    But you must remember that RWNJs all seem to have blinders on; it's the only way they can get through life without considering any other POV.

    Happy New Year to All!  Keep an Open Mind, an Open Heart, and Pray for a Bright Future.

    Cheers!

    Sometimes, you need a sensa uma!

    by HashHoward on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 03:19:47 PM PST

    •  Hmm that's insulting to Gee Dubya (0+ / 0-)

      He's shown more intelligence than some of them. Including his own brother Jeb has recently (look at the whole Vatican embassy furor, and GWB was the initiator of that process allegedly which isn't really a silly move).

  •  BIGOTRY AND IGNORANCE (0+ / 0-)

    Like America's  "growing" problem with obesity, the country's underbelly of wilful stupidity is also growing, housing a tumour threatening the body politic.  It's always been a factor in American politics but is now assuming truly destructive proportions, thanks in no small part to the ability of true charlatans like Limbaugh to spread their venom and ignorance.

  •  Why is it (0+ / 0-)

    that you believe that only that truth which the human mind can understand and comprehend is the only truth that exists?
    Put another way, what percentage of what there is to know can science currently tell us?
    Science is forever critically, and necessarily, limited in what it can tell us, by the fact that real science can only show us what we have become intelligent enough to prove.  That is a very little part of all there is to know.
    It's curious that a political ideology would attempt to hijack the entire world of scientific thought and claim it for themselves, while ridiculing anyone who has the audacity to think we may not understand something fully.  

    Einstien estimated once that we know less than 1% of all there is to know.  He also thought there was a good chance that God was in the other 99%.  I suppose he never was much of a scientist.

  •  As an educator I can you without (0+ / 0-)

    equivocation that there are some people wh o are too stupid to learn. Mainly repukes.

  •  They (RWNJs) are like toilet paper, (0+ / 0-)

    stuck on your shoe.....

  •  Some trolls are being paid (0+ / 0-)

    I recently read about a Drexel University study in an article in the Scientific American that conservative billionaires/CEOs are spending $1 billion per year to deny climate change.  

    Sad and blind.

    Those funding climate change denial commit crimes against humanity. It's the planet, stupids!

    by tsunami on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 03:51:37 PM PST

  •  I know a Stan like that (0+ / 0-)

    He was so rude and threatening that I blocked him. He was obsessed with guns.

    How do you recommend an article or a comment when there is no place to do it? No box to check or like button.

  •  Stan, dumb it down (0+ / 0-)

    You clearly indicated in the text of your post what a bunch of morons you were interacting with.  You should have expected the response you received, especially since about 50% of the words you employed were larger than one syllable, and there were a significant number of words with three syllables.  Your sentence structure was entirely too complicated, well beyond the simple noun/verb/subject to which your conversants are accustomed.  You even made the mistake of straying beyond the use of concrete imagery, you know, something people can actually tactually identify with their physical senses.  Next time, do not tax them so much with the imponderables.

    •  Its obvious that the response was expected (0+ / 0-)

      and that until he got the response he couldn't write this piece, so he had to keep goading them until some lamebrain said the punch line that Obama was the charlatan.

      "The owners of this country know the truth: its called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it." ~ George Carlin

      by Gregory Wonderwheel on Thu Jan 02, 2014 at 12:03:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  You can't get over, of course, but (0+ / 0-)

    I might try saying:

    I can't reduce a specific, reasoned statement to a single generalization for the same reason you can't reduce the Bible to a bumper sticker. Because reasons are complex, conclusions are complex, and because we often have to tell the story of an idea to express it. That takes more than a summary statement, just as it demands more of the audience.

    and/or

    If my audience won't bother to read my best effort to communicate, then I get exactly the same result as if he can't read. Communication takes an equal effort on both sides. If I make the effort, take the time, to write a complete statement, complete with specifics, with evidence, and and with reasoning, that means I expect my audience to make the effort to follow and understand my reasoning and how it rests on my evidence. It means I expect him to make the effort to understand me exactly.

    It ALSO means that I am confident he CAN read, he can evaluate evidence, he CAN follow reasoning. My detailed statement is an expression of my respect for my audience.

    If I only threw a sentence or two out there, with no way to tell how I reached my conclusion, then that would mean I hold my audience in contempt. The way Rush Limbaugh holds you in contempt.

    ***********

    Of course, however you approach it, it will be more than he cares to read. Because that is how he expresses his contempt for (and fear of) you.

    To My Colonoscopist

    I think that I shall never see
    so far up you as you up me.

    by shieldvulf on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:00:08 PM PST

  •  The End of Civility (0+ / 0-)

    Sadly, this is becoming the norm.  Instead of giving a clear defense of your position, you have posters resorting to name calling and insult hurling.  I've experienced my share too...and bear in mind I am a moderate:  I'm conservative in some areas, liberal in others (hence I'm kind of a "deep purple".  Yet with certain individuals, the mentality is "you are either for us, or against us"...and then the (and pardon the words I use here, as they can be construed as offensive, but have received firsthand) "libetard" and "nut job" epithets get flung.

    I can understand someone using profanity to prove a point or create emphasis (but I prefer to not use that option like a country not using a WMD), but once you start using F-bombs, or generalizing, or white-flagging (the "your sentence is too long for me to understand"), then I've already lost a ton of respect for you...and the only reason I'll bother to jaw with you would just be savage amusement, and frankly, I wouldn't have time for that.
    I certainly know where you're coming from srfRantz,  and I'm afraid it just won't get any better.

  •  let it go (0+ / 0-)

    you're only to get a worse headache hitting  your head against a brick wall.  sometimes, it really isn't worth it.  obviously, if he can only understand short sentences, that says it all there.

  •  tl;dr (0+ / 0-)

    LOL, what a bunch of loons.

  •  Singing pig (0+ / 0-)

    Never try to teach a pig to sing - it wastes your time, and it will annoy the pig.

    Warren/Grayson 2016! Yes We Can!

    by BenFranklin99 on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 04:22:31 PM PST

  •  Try this on your RW NJ friends.... (0+ / 0-)

    You, "All Politicians are Corrupt"

    Them, "Ain't that the truth.  Every GD one of 'em"

    You, "who do you think corrupts the politicians?  Is it the poor or is it the Rich?"

    Them, "what do you mean?"

    You, "Well, the poor don't have any money or power so they can't be the corrupters.  Must be the rich."

    Them, "Damn straight!"

    You, "So why stick up for the rich? They corrupt the politicians to steal from you and me."

    Them, "you got a point there..."

  •  armchair psychology...pity them (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    belinda ridgewood

    I've come to the conclusion that individuals such as this are to be pitied, I can't even get angry at them anymore. I had become so angry, over what I could not change or control, I had to stop. A blind man cannot see, even if he wants to see, he still cannot. They are blind but they don't want to see so they're worse.  

    Anyway, I was seriously in danger of losing it.  And, that's when I realized that your average t bagger nut bag is probably a pretty lonely person. And that there's a very good chance the reason they yell idiot or moron at every turn is because someone probably told them that's what they are.  They hate because they have been hated or taught to hate (nice environment to grow up in, right?). They are damaged people, probably unloved. People who are loved and secure don't behave like they do. They don't need to.

    Their superior attitude, that I'm right and you are crap attitude, comes from insecurity, that's no secret, it's so obvious.

    I don't think they're all morons or low IQ individuals but they're so invested in being right, in being better than everyone else, they reveal just how broken they are. Pity them and be glad you're not in the same boat. I'm no longer angry, I'm grateful I am not one of them.

  •  It's not stupidity... (0+ / 0-)

    ...it's absolute and complete disrespect.  What he is saying is that he believes you are so inconsequential, so inferior, and so far beneath his notice that he doesn't even need to read what you wrote to denigrate you further.

  •  Such inanity is common enough. (0+ / 0-)

    While I am generally of the opinion that plenty of more left leaning individuals are just as corrupt as the radical right and tend more toward classical liberalism with a dash of social justice / left libertarianism, than modern liberalism I wholly concur with exasperation here.

    I find that sort of response maddening, more so than the inane, name calling insults to be sure.

    I would also concur that Limbaugh and perhaps Glen Beck top the chart of conservative charlatans. The difference is that I can give you a list of progressive charlatan's too.

    Though I would, in general, find quite eye-rolling the assertion that our current president fits that bill, the more I learn about our ""Change" and "Transparency" PoTUS, for whom I twice voted,, the more I think he falls short on that count and if the trend continues I might think the shoe fits...just for very different reasons than the lunatic right)

    The thing is though. The response was not as you say an admission of lack of intellect, though it was certainly a direct sign of such.

    He was in fact calling you a windbag.

    The response was in fact the sort of dismissive short attention span mini-trolling idiocy that rules the internet.  

    It is an outright dismissal of your point of view on the sheer basis that you do not convey your view in short enough form to fit into a tweet.

    To which I would be sorely tempted to respond soley and facetiously, in kind.

    Namely with the internet meme, that aptly summarizes this attitude.

    TL; DR

  •  Conservative Whatever (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Trebissky

    Here's the proper response: We are all in this together. To the degree we look out for others, we look out for ourselves. If someone feels defensive about a position he or she has taken, it's because this person knows there are some problems with it. So when you respond, don't give the person a reason to be defensive. Acknowledge that he or she is right given their assumptions, but maybe together you can explore the assumptions and see whether they are reality-based. Those who believe it's us against them, that the poor are moochers, that they only have responsibility for themselves and the heck with everyone else, well those assumptions are not reality-based. If you cannot get such people to change their minds, then a good response is "you're absolutely right, and I completely disagree with you." That will confuse them.

  •  Cheer up, Stan. It's not you, it's THEM. (0+ / 0-)

    Cheer up, Stan.  It's not you, it's THEM.  Yes, they ARE that stupid, slow and dim-witted.  It's why Rush, Bill-O and the boys try to use little words as much as they can, and when they really MUST use one that's worth 25 cents instead of a nickle, they know their listeners will just go ahead and play it back word for word, like walking tape recorders, whether they really understand it or not.

    And let all the "libtards" try to figure out what they're talking about.  But that's pretty much impossible, when THEY don't even know what they're talking about to start with.

    Of course, when libs CAN'T decipher their gobbledegook, they proudly pronounce that it's because WE'RE too stupid.  Nope.  Einstein, Daniel Webster and Aristotle combined couldn't make sense of nonsense.

    •  Just a follow-up... (0+ / 0-)

      "In the fevered state of our country, no good can ever result from any attempt to set one of these fiery zealots to rights, either in fact or principle. They are determined as to the facts they will believe, and the opinions on which they will act. Get by them, therefore, as you would by an angry bull; it is not for a man of sense to dispute the road with such an animal."
      ~ Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, 24 Nov. 1808,
      to his grandson, Thomas Jefferson Randolph

      “To argue with a man who has renounced his reason is like giving medicine to the dead.”
      ~ Thomas Paine

  •  drjehr (0+ / 0-)

    A quote given to me a long time ago goes something like this: "The only person more foolish than The Fool is The Wise Man who tries to teach him of the error of his ways."  Let the people of the far right wallow in their ignorance.  There is nothing to be gained by trying to reach them.  They live in a fact-free zone and logic does not apply.  

  •  The War on Education... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Trebissky, portlandzoo

    ... is apparently retroactive.

    I have worked with adults who are classified as mentally handicapped and who exhibited vastly more mental activity and social responsibility than the sort of mindset you've described, which sure has become all too common.

    As far as I can see, the only true stupidity is that which is voluntarily embraced: the lazy mind.

    I feel for your stun, srfRantz.

  •  Missed the opening (0+ / 0-)

    Dude, the response seems obvious to me: "you are the charlatan."

    "Its hard to play chicken when your leaders ARE chicken" - Aravir

    by Kcox on Mon Dec 30, 2013 at 05:33:24 PM PST

  •  Stan's rants & their effects (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    portlandzoo

    Author Thomas Frank has used the word "hypocognition" (not his own coinage) to describe the denial mentality of the right-wing conservative viewpoint.  In other words, you can't have a reasoned conversation with critical thinking with a person who either does not understand your syntax and context, or who refuses to acknowledge your word usage.   Authors who write about sociopaths also use the word "invalidation" to describe those who simply will not even acknowledge that the other party has the right to a point of view.  A psychologist would call it a "4th level attitude", meaning a presumption that the other point of view is either a genuine threat to be avoided, or a taboo subject.  4th level attitudes can only be changed through a shock of some sort, like physical injury, childbirth, emotional trauma, or some types of drug experiences, and perhaps, religious conversion.  

    All of this in one form or another - this "appropriate psychosis" as a Serbian propagandist once put it - is really a form of - for now - defensive propaganda, and the purpose of propaganda is to dehumanize the enemy in order to lessen the normal human constraints against killing.  

    Make no mistake, these are dangerous times we are entering, socially, and politically.  As Jack Nicholson's character replied to Dennis Hopper's character in "Easy Rider", when people see others who are truly free, it frightens them, but, " . . .No, they don't act scared - - - it makes 'em dangerous".  Or words to that effect.

    One might keep in mind, that just as in a beer commercial, there is always the leader of the group, the head bully who instigates the rest to follow, and there are plenty of people on the internet who may pose as successful, older white men, or what-have-you, and in fact may simply be deriving sadistic pleasure from stirring up trouble, and wasting the other person's time.  

    I have met many, many people in rural and conservative areas, and very few are as extreme as what we see on the internet.  It is best to let them stew in their own juices.  Feeding hate just gives its parasitic nature more to feed on.  And consider the notion of a "moving target" as being a good thing - don't be a sitting duck for your views - the military calls it "commitment" - once you establish a position, countermeasures are likely - expect them!

  •  You have to roll with it (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Arfeeto

    Stan, your opponents are using so many logical fallacies that it's difficult to list them all.

    The way to respond, IMO is have a little fun at their expense. Don't make any references to education or intelligence, or accomplishments or anything like that. Use only the words they've written against them. Just point out that they can't seem to put an argument together.

    Example:
    "Sorry you can't follow what I said. Let me spell it out for you in plain language: I'm just going to pick Limbaugh out of all the other charlatans. Right now, in my mind, he's the worst.

    Is that simple enough for you XXX?"

  •  Who was it? (0+ / 0-)

    Stan, did you ever find out who it was? Just curious.

  •  Stop talking to republicans (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a gilas girl

    Hi sfrRantz and anyone else;
    Progressives have to stop giving republicans the stage. They have fixed, false beliefs and will never change their minds. Don't expect them to come to their senses. They won't.
    Instead, go to Alicelaw.org and look up the issue that means a lot to you. They will have exemplary laws and ordinances that you can get your local government to implement.
    This is the game-changer that we should focus on.
    Ignore the dysfunctional political jokers who can't talk about their thoughts without getting crazy.
    Thanks.  

    •  about that "giving them the stage" bit... (0+ / 0-)

      not so sure that progressives have stages to give, but otherwise I agree wholeheartedly with the assertion that progressives need to promote progressive ideas with as much vim and vigor as they like to attack GOP ones.

      Thanks, too, for the Alicelaw.org reference.

      Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

      Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

      by a gilas girl on Tue Dec 31, 2013 at 06:58:11 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Why try? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    portlandzoo

    It has been my experience that trying to reason with an ideolog is rather like trying to fight a forest fire with poetry; it does nothing to put out the fire and only serves to annoy the firefighters.

    •  fighting fires with poetry (0+ / 0-)

      good analogy - and imho, debating someone inside the sad and desperate wasteland that is fbook is an invitation to frustration. I don't fbook but I was sent an item that was posted in the middle of Xmas greetings asking folks to vote on who was the worst Prez of all time - Obama or Carter. Seriously?? The great unwashed wingnuts just can't help themselves - have some hate with your turkey and stuffing - mind the heartburn.

      "Please proceed, Governor"

      by portlandzoo on Tue Dec 31, 2013 at 06:24:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I've had the exact same response (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    portlandzoo, Arfeeto

    on Sodahead and other boards from conservatives who realize they've lost the argument.  They won't surrender, or even shut up - they start claiming that they can't take the time to comprehend what I'm saying and asking me to simplify it - as you said, dumb it down.

    I think this is a VERY dangerous situation for the world's premiere democracy to be in, but that's my personal opinion.  It seems to me that there are a lot of them, and while they are nowhere near a majority - they give a solid and immovable base to anyone their sages seem to anoint - from there the path ot 50% plus one is easier than it is for liberals or moderates who have to convince a much broader swath of the populace that they deserve to be elected.

    I don't know the solution.

  •  Saddest... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Arfeeto

    People who don't think and blindly allow their leaders to fill their heads are not humans, they're sheep.
    Stop worrying about communicating with them, Stan. You can't communicate with sheep. You can only roast them.

  •  Right wing people go to great lengths (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Arfeeto

    to not answer questions they may find uncomfortable.  Answering questions is not their thing.  Making accusations and calling anyone who disagrees with them liars and socialists regardless if what you say is their SOP.  

    I posted a comment on the Speaker's Blog recently about the budget "agreement" and was rewarded with snark after snark from people who had clearly read neither the "agreement," any news about it, or my post.  

    My favorite was the guy who accused me of posting from my Obamaphone and obviously mooching from the real people of the United States for accepting Social Security and Medicare, which proved that I was a Socialist, Muslim, African American liar who had no idea what real Americans thought.  You can only laugh at these jokers, which further enrages them.  

    I asked one, who proudly bills himself a Black American (but not an African-American) and former Airborne soldier, what he thought about the part of the budget agreement that would cut veterans pensions.  

    I asked him the same question, in fact, four times and never once received an answer that addressed the query.

    I haven't given up yet, and don't plan to.  It's frustrating to read this stuff, but the entertainment value of vicariously watching heads explode is too rich to abandon.  

  •  Understand the Lumpen (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Arfeeto

    Eric Hoffer was a longshoreman who spent his free time reading and writing. He was surrounded by guys who were relatively ignorant, and many seemed proud of it. He offered insight about such people.

    "An empty head is not really empty; it is stuffed with rubbish. Hence the difficulty of forcing anything into an empty head."

    "Propaganda does not deceive people; it merely helps them (aggrieved or comfortable) to deceive themselves."

    "Power corrupts the few, while weakness corrupts the many... The resentment of the weak does not spring from any injustice done to them but from the sense of their inadequacy and impotence. They hate not wickedness but weakness. When it is in their power to do so, the weak destroy (what they perceive to be) weakness wherever they see it."

    "It is by its promise of a sense of power that evil... attracts the weak."

  •  Saddest and Truest Conservative Facebook Comment E (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a gilas girl, Old Sailor

    I'm a technical editor, Stan, and my area of expertise happens to be scientific literature.  I also teach writing, as an adjunct, at a local community college.

    In my opinion, your answer to the conservative fellow who engaged you was more than clear.  Indeed, it was quite elegantly expressed.  Coherent and concise, it contained no unnecessary ideas or terms.  So if we're to accept your correspondent's unfavorable critique of your post as true, I agree with your conclusion that he's simpleminded and slow-witted.  Yet, in that way, he's like all other extremists on the political right.  In these individuals, arrogance and ignorance combine to form a toxic, antisocial politics that they amplify via the Internet.

    I couldn't share more your utter frustration with this man and his ilk.  Moreover, I'd add to it an ominous sense of concern for the nation's future.  For roughly a third of the electorate are ill-educated, boorish, and selfish.  They support right-wing causes and candidates, and about half the electorate consistently votes Republican.  That such parity exists between the competing ideologies of government is depressing and alarming.

    •  What a thoughtful response (0+ / 0-)

      to srfRantz's diary and situation.  I note that you've referred to the diarist as "Stan" so I'm thinking you've probably made your way to daily kos via a facebook share/link, etc.

      Given that this diary was posted 5 + days ago your comment might not generate a lot of response from the community, so I wanted to take the time to welcome you to the site.  

      There's usually not a whole lot of traffic in diaries that are more than 3 days old. So the lack of response is in no way a reflection upon your comment.

      Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

      Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

      by a gilas girl on Tue Dec 31, 2013 at 08:54:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Ignorance, thy name is RWNJ (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a gilas girl, Arfeeto

    I don't know whether to be glad or sad that these people elevate ignorance to an art form--ugly art, to be sure. On the one hand, their stupidity seems to foreshadow their extinction, yet in the meantime, they do so much damage. Still, I prefer to think of all this garbage they spew as the death rattle of frightened, pathetic, deeply damaged little minds. Their ordered world of racism, misogyny, unbridled capitalism, and jingoistic politics is crumbling around them, and the best they can come up with as a response to intelligently crafted English prose is profanity and meaningless retorts. They're pretty sure they've been insulted, but all those big words are baffling.

    At this time of year, I am reminded of the dialogue spoken by the Ghost of Christmas Present when he reveals the children beneath his robe-- "This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased."

    We have a whole lot of erasing to do, but I believe with all my heart that it's under way.

    •  What a beautiful comment (0+ / 0-)

      and beautifully crafted, too.  Such a pleasure to read!

      It may seem that you're not generating much response, but that's because the original diary is a few days old now, and conversations don't generally continue across so many days among the community.  Unfortunate, but a reality of the community.  

      I didn't want you to be discouraged by a lack of response.

      Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

      Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

      by a gilas girl on Tue Dec 31, 2013 at 11:48:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Seriously? (0+ / 0-)

    How is this at the top of the Daily Kos email? This is so inane, and it's so stereotypical of liberals. This is what makes people confident about their conservatism. I'm not saying liberalism is wrong or anything, but some people seem to think that complaining about stupid conservative comments is some kind of contribution. It's not.

    This kind of article would have appealed to me around 2008, but I don't apologize for that because I was 16 at the time. Partisan, emotional sparring without any content was fine for me to some extent. I still keep my Daily Kos subscription since it does still have some interesting articles that other sources aren't covering. I guess I also like to be aware of the mistakes that contribute to national discussions, and you can only do that by looking at the bullshit that seems to influence people. The problem is that it's sad.

    It doesn't make you right or smart to argue with idiots who aren't saying anything, nor should it give you any sense of accomplishment to complain about some idiot with whom you had an unproductive Facebook argument. Your goal should be to improve as many conversations as you can. If you fail, move on and try again.

    You're not the only one who's been frustrated by someone who doesn't understand what you're saying. It's fine to be frustrated temporarily, but if you adopt a persistent position of being too smart for conservatism, you'll give up on learning about it, and you'll be the one who suffers as a result.

    Economics is far more complex than partisans tend to realize. I've been putting in a lot of effort over the last few years to sift through the rhetoric and emotions that are directed past each other in order to identify the best of the arguments, and it's a humbling process if you do it empathetically. Let me tell you, at least 99% of everyone who has an opinion about economics is making one mistake or another. Don't get cocky. I'm sorry for singling you out, but I think it will be worth it if it encourages even just a few people to be less scared of being wrong.

    •  Agree with the first sentence. (0+ / 0-)

      Don't agree with the next sentence, which is just the same kind of comment that is being criticized.
      Actually, except for the first sentence, there is not much else to this comment worth noting.
      The last paragraph is hilarious with the claim that the writer is in the 1% who understands economics but doesn't say one word about economics.

      "The owners of this country know the truth: its called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it." ~ George Carlin

      by Gregory Wonderwheel on Thu Jan 02, 2014 at 12:01:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Perhaps I was unclear. (0+ / 0-)

        True, I shouldn't have made that kind of claim without explaining it. I meant that the article reinforces the stereotype of a liberal rejecting conservatism by pointing out the stupidity of conservative individuals. It's a stereotype that I think has some merit because liberals have a stake in valuing intelligence, so they (thankfully) tend to value smart, effective communicators over ideologues, but they make the mistake of judging fiscal conservatism as a whole by their premature assumption that fiscal liberalism is sustainably effective against inequality, by their (accurate) disgust of financial and environmental deregulation, and by the absolute foulness of social conservatism. An idiot would make a popular but facile target for liberals because liberals in particular value discourse that combines emotional intelligence with demonstrated expertise. Self-described conservatives, on the other hand, tend to make the mistake of valuing loyal candidates over intelligent candidates and neglecting to communicate how they arrived at the conclusions they think are obvious. I'm still oversimplifying these opinions, and I'd rather not get into more detail since it's irrelevant, but I apologize for making vague accusations.

        I certainly don't claim to be in the 1% about understanding economics. I said that nearly everyone who uses economics to support an opinion is making some kind of mistake. The most common mistake is overlooking the counterarguments. I make that mistake all the time, and I embrace being wrong on a regular basis. It means I have an opportunity to learn something. It's a key part of the scientific process: trying to destroy your own arguments by coming up with alternatives and by identifying sources of error. That's all I'm advocating. Supporting an argument does not involve rejecting the worst of the alternative arguments; it involves rejecting the best of them.

        As you noted (dismissively), I refrained from stating any opinion about economics. The only political opinions I am confident of (besides the group mentality theories I summarized above and the virtue of our government's basic structure) are about campaign finance, education, journalism, fiscal stimulus, financial regulation, and social policies. If it matters to you, I tend to agree with self-described liberals on all of those issues except education, on which I only I agree partially. In the past, I have held plenty of economic opinions on other topics only to repeatedly discover that the topic is far more complicated than I initially realized. In many cases, I believed information that was simply wrong. So I am still undecided on monetary policy and many long-term fiscal policies.

        The only thing I claim about myself is that I'm interested in learning. I'm not an expert; I'm just willing to hunt for the best arguments I can find, especially if they support a position I initially dismissed. Consequently, I avoid premature judgements about politics, even if they seem obvious at first glance. I think it's important to be able to change your mind frequently. The main thing I'm criticizing is partisanship since it interferes so problematically with learning.

  •  Don't know why you would be stunned. (0+ / 0-)

    And also don't understand you feeling hopeless. You were attempting to communicate to the very types mentioned in the Sagan clip. There is simply no reasoning with these folks, they live inside the bubble and are incapable of hearing, seeing or understanding anything outside their ideology.

    "Three things cannot be long hidden: The Sun, The Moon, and The Truth." Buddha

    by Grandson named me Papa on Tue Dec 31, 2013 at 03:51:03 PM PST

  •  Their dogma ate my catma (0+ / 0-)

    There is only one truth, and it's theirs.  They cannot afford to give your side of the issue even one moment of thought.

    They instinctively know that their values will not stand up against alternative views.  They need to cling to their truths like a drowning a man for fear those truths will not stand up to questioning.

    Closed minds.  No heart, compassion or humor.  

    •  Well, (0+ / 0-)

      Don't you understand that many conservatives think the exact same thing about liberals? How well would you be able to argue for conservatism?

      Who cares about one idiot on Facebook? Sure, Republicans tend to elect people who aren't very smart, but there are plenty of intelligent conservatives out there. They obviously have given your side at least a little bit of thought because the merits of liberalism aren't difficult at all to understand. It's the merits of conservatism that require more thought, and it's important not to dismiss the contributions of conservatism to American politics just because some conservatives are idiots. Argue with someone at your own level. I know it seems hard to find them, but they are out there.

  •  Where's the beef? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gregory Wonderwheel

    I read your post and thought, 'well I'll just look at the Facebook thread and see what's going on'.  Think again: no link.  That's disappointing.

    I always have to move remarks such as yours into the questionable bin when there is very little in the way of facts to go on.

    Maybe the charlatan is the one who rants, insults and makes fun of others but does not provide much in the way of facts?

  •  Reasonable conversations (0+ / 0-)

    with the right-wing has become all but impossible. Most of them degenerate into vile spewing rants of Obama and liberals. The pure hate that generates from them is at times STILL shocking and their rants quickly fill with filthy language that could outdo a sailer. I have found they have some strange generalizations of liberals (all are atheists, they hate our country, they hate our military, all are liars, all are welfare leeches, racist because we see their racism for what it is, etc).

    Try to have a civil debate with them and you find yourself instantly being attacked and despised because liberals are automatically the enemy of conservatives. More and more I'm seeing extreme levels of paranoia amongst their ilk and almost all of them proselytize that Obama's goal is to divide this country (all though I believe we are doing a damned fine job of it all by ourselves).

    I've read from conservatives I don't know many times that the majority of our domestic terrorists were all liberals. What is more frightening though is the number of mentally ill they attract because of their beliefs in being persecuted by the government and the outrageous diatribes of people like Alex Jones (my son being one of them who now is convinced that there are indeed lizard people controlling our country through the government).

    Politics have become frightening with the number of death threats coming from the extremist right-wing.

  •  Sagan passed along junk politics (0+ / 0-)

    Sagan was a good physical scientist but a poor political scientist.   After he warns about a "charlatan" the clip ends with Sagan saying "otherwise we don't run the government, the government runs us." That's junk political science. The government doesn't run anything. It is like saying if we don't drive the car the car drives us.  Just silly talk.  The Tea Party and Libertarians and Reagan Republicans want to make government the bad guy who runs us and Sagan's view is identical to that frame of reference. The political scientist understands that the question is all about who runs the government, not about the government running anybody.  If the people don't run the government democratically, the rich owners and corporate lords of our American Brand of Fascism will continue to run the government. Yes, I said "continue" because the system of corporate feudalism is being protected by the current administration as much as by the precious administrations. It may matter very much to physical scientists which party is in control of the government but it doesn't matter whether the administration is Democratic or Republican when it come to protecting the institution of capitalist corporate feudalism of the American Brand of Fascism.

    "The owners of this country know the truth: its called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it." ~ George Carlin

    by Gregory Wonderwheel on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 11:53:17 PM PST

  •  This is why I don't respond to RWNJ trolls...EVER! (0+ / 0-)

    I prefer to go by Proverbs 26:4...

    "Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou be like unto him." (KJV)

  •  The reply - if you want 2 sentences, max ... (0+ / 0-)

    ... give up on facebook, and stick with Twitter - the 140 character limit should be right up your alley!

    3 paragraphs in NO WAY constitutes a "rant"!  If you wanna see a REAL rant, check out the FAUX-libusters last year by YOUR boys, Ted Cruz and Rand Paul!

    OF COURSE the New Right is wrong - but that doesn't make WRONG the new RIGHT!

    by mstaggerlee on Thu Jan 02, 2014 at 09:07:42 AM PST

  •  MY RESPONSE TO HIS/HER RESPONSE (0+ / 0-)

    FIRST MISTAKE:  "ASSUMING" you will find RW'r's to offer comments backed with REASON!

    SECOND MISTAKE:  NOT taking issue with his performance of "ANAL" with your wife:  It is OBVIOUS that he is only familiar with "ANAL"...typical of MANY bathroom GOP'rs...and then I'd tell him that "I" was a widower (whether true or not....THEIR GAME....not ours)....and that he was a ruthless QUEER with the morality of STALIN!

  •  Me & my big mouth (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    peregrine kate

    get me into trouble like this all the time and I try to be as eloquent, concise, and polite as you were all the time.

    I also often question my intelligence when this sort of "argument" happens to me. Don't let them weigh you down but keep trying. Sometimes I think I should just stop reading/posting online but I just couldn't forgive myself for hiding from trolls rather than standing up for myself and sanity.

    •  I appreciate your encouragement of the poster, (0+ / 0-)

      and I'm glad you've ventured out of lurkerdom. But I wanted to let you know that you are commenting in a "stale" diary (that is, one that's more than a day or so old, with the possible exceptions being Recommended diaries or Community Spotlight diaries or Front Page diaries) and so you're not likely to get any response from the diarist or from any other commenter.

      Still, thanks for your first comment, and I hope it's the start of many more.

      Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

      Support Small Business: Shop Kos Katalogue If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

      by peregrine kate on Thu Jan 02, 2014 at 03:16:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Dealing With Dittoheads (0+ / 0-)

    is an impossibility. These people have been brainwashed from the Jesus Camps, their churches, homeschooling, their genetic donors and Mass Media titans like Tush Bozo; the Oxycontin king (who never spent a day in jail even though he committed FIVE (5) counts of prescription fraud.)

    They are like the kids in the schoolyard who stick their fingers in their ears and go "la la la la la la la" when you try to have a fact-finding debate with them.

    But, don't forget, change... real change... comes from within. These people are taught to resist all but their brainwashing and to treat other with force bc to them force is the answer to everything (which it isn't; force only has a temporary hold on the collective unconscious; to wit Gandhi's accomplishments in India,) and repeating lies will get them everything they want; the ends justifying the means.

    These people have been birthed on Calvinism that God only loves rich people (no matter how they get their fortunes) but fortunately, those with two live brain cells to rub together know this to be false.

    I finally figured out that the reason these people vote crooks into office is bc they identify with them. I am someone who has lived from Helsinki to Honolulu and many big cities in between; most of which were northern cities; SF, Boston, NYC, and then I moved into the "Deep South" about ten years ago (big mistake.)

    When I first came here, I was in love with the weather, the beauty and the charm of the place. This has been replaced over the years with an clear and poignant understanding that lying, cheating, stealing and not giving a good gd about anyone or anything except ones self is what the South is really all about and I can't wait until the housing market comes back up so I can move back to the freezing cold North and some very Blue state.

    Don't bother trying to deal with them. If they are pursuing this type of behavior, just realize they are a lost case; sociopath if not borderline psychopath who will only resort to force and criminal behavior to get their way. Don't believe me? Just have a look at the behavior coming out of the Congress; particularly the House, and ask yourself how many of these obstructionists are Religious Right, Right-wing, South Western or Southern redneckers? How about Mitch McConnell (Alabama), Lindsey Graham (South Carolina), Arlen Spectre (Oklahoma), Jphn Cornyn (Texas), Eric Cantor (Virginia) and in the House, all of the Tea Baggers. Even the name "Grand Old Party" suggests the Old South where there was no such thing as "democracy" in a authoritarian plantation society; which is the mentality of today's GOP two hundred years later.

    We must be vigilant against their never ending agenda and fight to get rid of their toxic, ignorant thinking fueled on nothing much more than pure arrogance and stupidity. Who else would vote against their own best interests when the rest of the country keeps telling them they are voting against their own best interests?

    But, like I said, they identify with crooks like Rich Scott, Gov. of Florida, who was embroiled in a 1.7 billion dollar Medicare scheme/scam theft, and then they turn around and make him governor and put him in charge of Medicare for the whole state!!! "Stupidity, have I ever offended thee???" The less air time you give these people the better.

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