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Post 20

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 6:48amSanction this postReply
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Ed,

It doesn't bother me.  I've done the same thing, as have other members. I don't say a whole lot in private that I'm not willing to also state in public, especially to people I don't know well. This isn't my workplace.

 The only thing to compensate me for my time here are my values. Because you're both valuable, it's difficult, if not out right painful, to watch one attack the other for reasons known only to them.  When that happens, my trust in one, or both, is shaken.

Ed, would you please apologize to Mindy for implying she was a troll way back when?  That wasn't necessary, and, I believe, is the whole issue of her resentment toward you.  I could be wrong, but that's what I'm taking away.

Mindy isn't a troll, and I'm not asking you to swallow any pride, only to employ a little justice, which takes some pride.

 




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Post 21

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 7:24amSanction this postReply
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Joe's message to Mindy in post #18 was right on target. The boss has spoken and he's right. Let's get over this.

Sam




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Post 22

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 7:28amSanction this postReply
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Teresa,

Why do my words fall on deaf ears?
It is about right and wrong. It is about ideas and their opposite. Look at each criticism. See if each one isn't factual.
Look at other people I've criticized in the same way. What's the difference?
Ed comes in for more, because he is in fact particularly poor, regarding his accuracy and reasonableness.
Ed would like, it seems, to spin that fact as a matter of a clash of personalities. If I "have it in for him," then it isn't merely the case the he himself is doing a relatively poor job in various of his posts.
If characterizing, "You need to read my posts more carefully," as a digression from arguing the facts of the case is false, show me how it is. If digressions from the matter at hand aren't in fact characteristic of Ed Thompson's style, show me how they aren't. If what I wrote isn't an effective way of making that point, prove that to me.
Ed does, in fact, whine and cry instead of arguing the truth of things. If you can't see that, yes, I'll call you blind. Is that abuse? Is every unpleasant fact ipso facto abuse?
Joseph Rowlands, world-weary with real concerns, can't stoop to give a flying flute who is right or wrong. Play nicely, or go to your room. Otherwise, I'll shut you up by force.
Ed's hurt feelings trump all, on RoR. Is that the way you'd have it?

Mindy

(Edited by Mindy Newton on 3/30, 7:35am)




Post 23

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 8:19amSanction this postReply
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Mindy,

You know (and I know you know) that I have a "personality." Michael Newberry called me "stranger than fiction" for a very good reason. I've been here for 7 years and have had many scuffles. I've learned a lot from people who were basically my intellectual foes. I've experienced refinements of my own style in order to thrive in this environment.

I have characteristic ways of expressing myself. I love ideas and truth, and I love the artful expression of ideas and truth.

Now, I don't expect you to get to like my personality, and I don't expect you to even believe me when I try to explain myself. I'm willing to engage your criticisms now -- point-by-point. I started this thread with the hope that stuff could be dumped in here -- so that I could sort through it and respond to it. I just said I was going to try to get along. If you don't want to try to get along that is fine -- I could go back to ignoring you. You are very smart and I wouldn't want to just ignore what you say because it's "easier" that way.

There have been many times when I passed over your posts but felt guilty about what great things you could be saying in those posts -- things I'm missing out on because I'm trying to ignore you. I don't want to keep doing that.

Again, I don't expect you to take my word for it (I'm actually worried that you'll take my words here and turn them on me), so here is an example to show you that I really do mean what I'm saying:

In discussion with Christopher, I mentioned that the action-arena for toddlers tends to involve a transient conflict of interest, the action-arena for teenagers tends to involve a perceived conflict of interest, and that the action-arena for adults often involves an imagined conflict of interest. You said (to Christopher) that there was no logical basis for that, but look at it this way:

If two toddlers were in the woods and there was only one pack of Oscar Meyer Lunch-ables there, then they would have a conflict of interest. The conflict of interest wouldn't be there for adults, because adults can hunt and forage for food. Toddlers aren't yet big or smart enough to hunt and forage. They are relatively helpless and unproductive (until they get older). That's why I would say that they are humans who -- because of their age -- sometimes act or operate with a conflict of interest (which is what is required in order to ever justify the initiation of force).

Would you care to comment about that? Do you still think that my statement about a conflict of interest between toddlers is still unfounded (even after the Lunchables-in-the-woods analogy). Can you make a positive argument for a lack of any conflict of interest between toddlers?

I will understand if you -- after all this -- if you choose not to engage me in the exact kind of a debate which you have, up until now, been saying that I characteristically evade (and, which I admit, I have been evading when it had come to a debate with you).

Ed

(Edited by Ed Thompson on 3/30, 8:22am)




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Post 24

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 11:44amSanction this postReply
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Mindy,

========
"Look at other people I've criticized in the same way?"
========

As I see it, there's no need to be critical of anyone here, and especially no need to be insulting? That seems counter-productive. It gravitates toward the uncivil and makes for exceptionally unpleasant discussion.

Jordan



Post 25

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 11:51amSanction this postReply
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I pretty much look at it the same way, Jordan.

By the way, Joe placed Mindy back on moderation while I was out.




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Post 26

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 12:14pmSanction this postReply
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"there's no need to be critical of anyone here"

You have got to be kidding.  There can be no useful progress in ideas without disagreement and criticism of other peoples viewpoints.  Many of you are way too thin skinned.  Putting Mindy on moderation is the most shameful thing I've seen on RoR.  Ed's continued evasion of Mindy put her over the edge.  That was also shameful and unnecessary.  This whole thread, "Flame War" is misdirection and an attempt to mischaracterize the real situation.




Post 27

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 12:41pmSanction this postReply
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Mike,

There can be no useful progress in ideas without disagreement and criticism of other peoples viewpoints.
But let me guess something:
Regarding my attempt above to discuss the merit of what I said about toddlers and conflict of interest, if Mindy now decides not to discuss these issues point-by-point -- in the case that Mindy decides not to answer me at all -- then you are going to look the other way regarding your statement above. In effect, you will give her a pass or an exemption, when you would not -- indeed, did not -- give me one.

You will hold a double-standard and justify it with reference to the righting of past wrongs. To punish me for the "harm" I've already caused with my past silence -- a silence which I had all-but-promised Mindy since January 17 .

And even though I all-but-promised that silence -- you're still willing to call it evasion.

Am I right?

Ed

(Edited by Ed Thompson on 3/30, 12:47pm)




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Post 28

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 12:48pmSanction this postReply
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Mike,

Criticizing people is the problem, not criticizing their viewpoints.

Jordan



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Post 29

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 12:55pmSanction this postReply
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This is exactly the type of popularity contest I try to avoid on this site (and was so common back in the SoloHQ days). People are free to disagree, and even to criticize ideas. But when it becomes about personalities, and some people feel they must harass others until they leave, it just turns into a giant hate-fest.

Not everyone appreciates the contributions of others on this site. Many people find value in contributions I think are completely wrong. But that's okay. It's a place where you don't have to agree with everyone and you can find the values that you want. And disagreements can be hearty while maintaining a smidgen of civility. That is, don't ruin it for the rest of the people.

Mindy can't play nice, so she's in time-out.

This is the same pattern that repeats so often. New person shows up on the site, posts for a little and makes a few friends, decides the site isn't big enough for everyone, and tries to force everyone to choose sides. And it's never enough. The popularity contests must continue forever, because it's all about proving how popular you are compared to another. Inevitably they have to pit themselves against me, the owner, as if the site were run by popularity and they should get to decide policy. And then they start crying that I'm using force against them, censoring them, or whatever.

The truth is, popularity contests are a zero-sum game and it's the quickest way to destroy any community. There must be winners and losers. And to prove popularity, you have to target someone who is somewhat popular, and that means the losers are a large group.

This is all pointless, unnecessary, and destructive.




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Post 30

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:00pmSanction this postReply
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http://rebirthofreason.com/Articles/Rowlands/The_Problem_of_Benevolence.shtml



Post 31

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:10pmSanction this postReply
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I'd agree with Mike that it seems excessive for Mindy to be placed on moderation. However, I also think that private messages should not be shared without first getting okay from the sender. Again, though, even if this were the case (and I do not know), I don't think that warrants the penalty box.

There are never any winners in this type of tit for tat, and everyone else around them - friends, etc. - loses too. This should just end. Both have valuable things to contribute to this forum. Disagreements should be confined to real issues and real facts, not inferred grievances and impugned characters.

Ed, Mindy, get a room. Send out your better selves to make posts.

In fact, Teresa, when I first saw your iceberg photo, the first implication I saw was that there is something bigger under the surface, and I almost joked "perhaps below the surface there's an unrelenting, seething sexual tension, waiting to burst out", but edited it out of my initial response.

Seen it happen before. : )

Ed, Mindy, get a room. Send us a post card, or better yet- just fresh, uncomplicated, clear ROR posts like before.

jt



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Post 32

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:35pmSanction this postReply
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Let me provide an example.  Imagine a participant in a forum aims to be recognized as the most intelligent person there.  When someone else shows up who is very intelligent, it will seem like a threat to the egotist.  Only one of them can be the best, and one man's gain is another man's loss.  If this is the value the participants are seeking to achieve, there would be no harmony of interests between them.  If you then suggest being benevolent, you couldn't appeal to their self-interest.  You'd have to ask them do be nice as a kind of sacrifice.

This never occurred to me!  


 




Post 33

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 2:16pmSanction this postReply
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That, however, indicates a lacking of self-esteem... on one or both parties...



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Post 34

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 4:41pmSanction this postReply
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I must be missing something here.

I enjoyed Mindy's posts a lot. She was challenging and frank, and she was open to reevaluate her stance if found in the wrong, for example as on Courbet thread.

It is no problem to judge a person. People are just as stupid as they post! Ad hominem is when someone says a person is stupid and then concludes that there is no credence to what they say. I thought Mindy handled herself superbly. In fact, she reminds me a little of Hong, and a little of Hong goes a long way.

Michael











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Post 35

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 7:02pmSanction this postReply
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I'm completely baffled by this. My two cents are only my two cents, and I like both Mindy and Ed, but this doesn't seem nearly as one sided as has been asserted by RoR staff. Despite all the cries of foul play due to back and forth in "popularity contests", it sure seems like one side of this bilateral disagreement has a lot of bold RoR titles and old guard members. If the issue is one of bilateral antagonism, why the unilateral punishment? I have a hard time thinking this is a victim/victimizer situation when the "victim" is starting threads like "Flame War: You vs. Me" Two cents now complete, I will now return to my regularly scheduled posting.



Post 36

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 7:14pmSanction this postReply
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The moderating of Mindy is a disappointment.
Beyond that, I have so much to say that I am at a loss for words.




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Post 37

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 7:42pmSanction this postReply
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It's very simple. I told them to play nice. Mindy said no. She decided she'd rather be moderated than obey the rules. If she can't keep her posts civilized, then the moderators will have to do it for her.

And anyone who's read my interactions with Ed will know that this is not favoritism.





Post 38

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 8:39pmSanction this postReply
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This is going to sound a little bit like circling the wagons, but I think it needs to be said -- and I think that Joe was being respectful by not repeating it here (so I'll say it for him).

If any of you are still out there still thinking that this has anything to do with "RoR titles and old guard members" -- i.e., if any of you are still questioning Joe's integrity even one tiny bit -- then I have a simple thought experiment for you:

1) go back to post 18 in this thread
2) read the last sentence of the first paragraph
3) put yourself in my shoes (imagine he's talking about you, instead of me)

Does that honestly make you feel anything like part of some "Good Ole' Boy" network?

Ed




Post 39

Monday, March 30, 2009 - 10:20pmSanction this postReply
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Fair enough, Ed.

But I still wonder at which of Mindyís posts have been uncivilized, as Joe has said some have been.

I recall all too well my own incivilities toward yourself, Bill, Joeóyet here I am. Apparently I am also very charming, perhaps even more so than I have imagined.

Or, perhaps I am perceived as not exceedingly bright and therefore not too much of a threat, and therefore tolerable. Offhand I would estimate Mindy as well smarter than I, so maybe this is it. I donít know. But there must be something.

Joe brought up the subject of popularity contests. I consider you a major offender. I recall our last engagement on the question of fortunes to be made vs. impossibility of fortunes to be made following a legalization of heroin. You argued the latter, saying that free markets teach us to be virtuous and no one could either get or stay rich in the heroin business following legalization. Bill made a post packed full of insights as usual, but he took no side one way or the other. You tried to piggy-back on his thoughts with something to the effect of ďThank you so much, Bill, for putting wayward and confused Jon straight.Ē I pointed out that he had neither put me straight nor supported you in the least. Later, he came out explicitly against your position. Then, you stopped arguing. You didnít actually say you had been wrong, you just stopped forwarding your argument. Your last statement was that you would like to punch me in the kisser.

I left it at that because thatís all fine with me, because I know that you know all of it. I know I will never get you to say you know it, but I donít have to. You know that I know it and thatís enough for me. You didnít want to say anything about being wrong.

And me too, by the way! I love to win. Sometimes I let myself get lured into winning instead of focusing on whatís true. I say letís forgive each other for that once in a while. I perceive you as letting go of truth and going for the win OFTEN. Surely you often perceive me the same way. Big fucking deal.

Point being that you earlier described yourself as a seeker of truthóand you certainly are oneóbut donít try to billboard that as though thatís all you are. I am a seeker of truth, too, but the next time we tangle I will be looking for truth up and Edís chin down, not just truth up. It was you who observed some time back that we are like two alpha dogs. I still love you, so I guess it works for us but not for you and Mindy.





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