Patterico's Pontifications

6/13/2008

Tim Russert Dead of Heart Attack

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:57 pm

He was 58.

This comes as quite a shock. Condolences to his family.

367 Responses to “Tim Russert Dead of Heart Attack”

  1. Oh, goodness. Condolences to his family, indeed.

    “Big Russ and Me” was the last book I was able to give to my father and he read before he passed away last year. A wonderful, poignant book that meant a lot to Dad and I. I’ve no doubt Mr. Russert’s family was exceptionally well loved by him and would have celebrated him equally well this weekend.

    What a heart-wrenching tragedy for them. May God bless their hearts and souls.

    EHeavenlyGads (f29174)

  2. I’d like to know more about the immediate circumstances. Apparently, he was in his office. In 2008, anyone having a witnessed cardiac arrest ought to have a one in three chance of survival. Seattle has been teaching CPR to the general population since the 1960s and there are automatic defibrillators all over. Maybe they tried and didn’t get him back. Most of these sudden arrests are arrhythmia and a thump on the chest might be enough to do it. Anyway, it’s a big loss.

    Mike K (6d4fc3)

  3. Perhaps Chmn. Waxman can conduct an investigation as to why NBC (and it’s parent GE), was deficient in their training of personnel, and availability of defibrulators, to deal with workplace heart-attacks.
    It would be at least as relevant as most of his other witch-hunts.

    ‘Bye Tim, I’ll miss you on MTP.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  4. My condolences to the Russert family.

    Fox News reports “Russert was in what is known as a tracking booth, recording voice-overs for the upcoming show, and started having problems breathing. He apparently collapsed and an ambulance was called. He was unconscious as he left and never revived.”

    DRJ (73b499)

  5. RIP-
    Just goes to show you never know just when your number will be called. Like the old Guy Lombardo song says, “Enjoy yourself, it’s later than you think.”

    No idea what Tim’s lifestyle was, but probably did much on the run. You see a skinny vegetarian running guru like Jim Fixx dead of massive myocardial infarction at 50 and a fat, robust Winston Churchill drinking lots of booze, eating to excess and smoking cigars and lasting 90-some years.

    madmax333 (574b12)

  6. Tim was one of the few news men (note: not reporter) who I could always trust. His delivery was what one expects of the news profession – ask questions, but never let your personal bias show. He probably learned that from Pat Moynihan (one of the few Democrats I always respected)

    The world is a worse place for his passing. He will be missed.

    Dr. K (5139b5)

  7. Over the past decade, as it seemed like every week brought another set of obits for the big names from my childhood, I’d taken to saying that this is a bad decade for being old and famous.

    Apparently, it’s not such a hot time for being not-so-old and famous, either.

    PCachu (e072b7)

  8. OMG. When I saw the thread title, I was hoping it was a sick joke. What a shock! It’s always a shame when parents have to bury their children.

    Maddoggit, I gotta get to a doc myself. I want to save my father that pain if I can.

    L.N. Smithee (e1f2bf)

  9. Sad news indeed. He appeared to be one of the few newsmen who did his best to keep his views out of any given story or interview.

    Condolences to his family.

    Horatio (a549f7)

  10. Well, I’m glad Hillary’s out of the running now, because if she still was viable, you know there would be jerks claiming he was the latest addition to the “Clinton Death List.”

    L.N. Smithee (e1f2bf)

  11. Perhaps Chmn. Waxman can conduct an investigation as to why NBC (and it’s parent GE), was deficient in their training of personnel, and availability of defibrulators, to deal with workplace heart-attacks.

    Unjustified snark.

    Russert’s internist, Michael A. Newman, MD:

    “Resuscitation was begun immediately and the DC EMS arrived on the scene and a full code was initiated and he was transported to Sibley Memorial Hospital where resuscitation efforts were continued, but to no avail. The cause of death is yet to be determined. An autopsy is being performed.”

    steve (6830b3)

  12. RIP Mr Russert…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  13. That story makes me think something other than an MI. I think he just returned from his son’s graduation. Maybe a pulmonary embolus. David Bloom died from one from riding in an APC in Iraq. They won’t come back with CPR. Sorry to be clinical but it’s what I’ve done for 40-some years.

    He’ll be missed. He was one of the very few leftish guys in the media who would press in on the Democrats when they came on his show.

    Mike K (f89cb3)

  14. Just returned from trip to Italy. Makes deep vein thrombis very possible. Also a blown AAA.

    wls (0ee728)

  15. A great journalist. One of the best yet. I hope he stayed long enough to impart some of his excellent brand of unbiased, objective and issues oriented journalism in the next generation.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  16. “You see a skinny vegetarian running guru like Jim Fixx dead of massive myocardial infarction at 50…”

    Fixx was cursed with a terrible family history of heart disease. Many of his family members (including his father, I believe) had died of heart attacks before they reached 40 years of age. Couple that with the reality of Fixx’s non – stop smoking habit that he had for many years before he took up running, and he already had two big strikes against him, no matter the healthy lifestyle he adopted later on.

    Dmac (ea35f7)

  17. You know Steve, I agree with you – and as a Conservative, even I liked Tim. He did his job the way it should be done, but rarely is – with fairness and a lack of personal bias, even though we all knew where his loyalties lay.

    But, the point was, that GE, a leader in medical technology and the owner of NBC, is no more able to prevent tragedies than any other employer in America. And, Waxman has harrassed, intimidated, and insulted corporate representatives before his Committee for a lot less.

    Could this have been prevented? Who knows. I certainly don’t.
    Kind of reinforces the Black Humor of:
    Eat right, Excercise, Die anyway.
    But, then, with the diefication of the Boomer Generation (I missed that one, thank goodness), the concept of living forever has gained credence, if not any factual basis.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  18. :( One of the greats; he will be missed, especially in this election. RIP, Mr. Russert.

    htom (412a17)

  19. It’s too bad he died, but I am already forcing myself to keep down the puke from all of the people running around lamenting the loss of Russert as a ‘great journalist.’ The Bush administration eviscerated virtually all of Russert’s credibility over the past 8 years, and Russert was usually eager to let them do it. He really has been one of the most glaring examples of our lazy and incompetent media.

    But it’s too bad he died.

    Levi (76ef55)

  20. Levi, classless as always.

    I hope when you pass you get the same courtesy you’ve shown others.

    Steverino (b42fd7)

  21. Levi, the rest of us are forcing ourselves not to puke when we see your comments. Class act, big guy.

    I heard about the trip from Italy driving home. That makes PE highest on my list and that is fatal unless you are in the hospital wen it happens. Ruptured aneurysm takes hours. I’ve repaired hundreds of AAAs and have done a few embolectomies although you have to have partial bypass available within minutes. It’s very hard to save somebody with a massive PE.

    I wear elastic stockings and walk around the plane every couple of hours.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  22. Patterico, I must admit that I’m stumped at the continued passes that Levi gets regarding his constant outlandish and offensive statements, while others like Doc Rampage are banned.

    The discourse is not elevated by his presence.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  23. Russert’s eloquent valentine to his father becomes all the more precious. I hope Big Russ finds some comfort in the pages as time goes by.

    Dana (7fffd5)

  24. Leave it to Levi to be the douche who gets drunk at the visitation and shits in the coffin…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  25. Doc Rampage is not banned. He banned himself.

    Levi is a classless ass.

    Patterico (656bcf)

  26. Levi should have a shot at hosting Meet The Press. I’m sure he would be unbiased and prone to asking succinct, pertinent, probing questions.

    One hopes that NBC does pick one of those truly great journalists like Matthews, Olbermann or even the ever classy Rather if not a Katie Couric.

    madmax333 (a04afc)

  27. Sorry I can be honest, fellas. Yesterday I thought Tim Russert was a deuchebag. Now he’s dead. That happens. People that you don’t like and people that you have no respect for are going to die. It’s sad that he died in the sense that it’s sad that anybody dies before they live to a ripe old age, but he was a part of this corrupt, worthless media establishment, and I’m not going to pretend that I’m not mad at him for what he’s done professionally over the years just because he died.

    If you guys found out I got hit by a bus tomorrow, would you have a tribute thread for me?

    Levi (76ef55)

  28. “…and I’m not going to pretend that I’m not mad at him for what he’s done professionally over the years just because he died.”

    How about pretending to be a decent human being, then? I haven’t agreed with one thing Senator Kennedy has ever done while in office, but I still feel sympathy for the man’s current medical travails. As usual, common humanity doesn’t enter into your mindset when it comes to an inconsequential political opinion.

    Dmac (ea35f7)

  29. Terribly, terribly sad. 58 is way too young.

    (Mike K., I wondered too if it was something other than an MI. We shall see.)

    Patricia (f56a97)

  30. How about pretending to be a decent human being, then? I haven’t agreed with one thing Senator Kennedy has ever done while in office, but I still feel sympathy for the man’s current medical travails. As usual, common humanity doesn’t enter into your mindset when it comes to an inconsequential political opinion.

    How am I allowed to react then, if I wanted you to see me as a ‘decent human being?’ I have to say nice things about them? People die all the time and I don’t say nice things about them. I’m supposed to say something nice about this one because he was a celebrity?

    Levi (76ef55)

  31. Maybe he generates hits?

    Apogee (366e8b)

  32. Levi #27,

    If you guys found out I got hit by a bus tomorrow, would you have a tribute thread for me?

    Yes, and we would be sad that someone so young had died. There might be one or two callous comments but they would be criticized, just as your attitude has been criticized here.

    When you get older, you will realize that 58 is much younger than it seems to you now. Tim Russert had a wife, son and father who will miss him for the rest of their lives, and it’s sad to see someone die in the prime of their career and life.

    DRJ (666ee5)

  33. Thank you DRJ – I have not commented here much since you left, and hope that you continue to comment, if not post, as your eloquence and reason more than counter-balances the idiocy of some other posters. If I wanted that kind of interplay, I would go to Huffington and/or Kos.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  34. “posters” should read “commenters”

    Apogee (366e8b)

  35. How am I allowed to react then, if I wanted you to see me as a ‘decent human being?’ I have to say nice things about them? People die all the time and I don’t say nice things about them. I’m supposed to say something nice about this one because he was a celebrity?

    Then say nothing, asshole.

    Guys, we can make Levi a non-person here, until Patterico bans him, if we ignore him totally. If a freak yammers and nobody responds does he get a tingle in his loins?

    nk (4bb2be)

  36. Nk – It is a classless vile sad little pathetic boy. Though ignoring it is tempting, its ashattery should be confronted.

    Tim Russert – It is sad to see you pass. Even when you were completely in the bag for the Dems, you were on of the few honest and respectable members of the media. The media, and us, will be worse off without you.

    JD (5f0e11)

  37. If Levi got hit by a bus, it would be the one taking him to Head-Start!

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  38. Doc Rampage is not banned. He banned himself.

    Sort of, but not really. Doc may have technically banned himself, but only after being threatened with banning if he didn’t give a coerced (and, therefore, meaningless) apology to someone who wasn’t even the target of his original comment, which itself wasn’t one-tenth as vile as the crap Levi spews every day. The only difference I see is that Doc inadvertently insulted your then-coblogger, while the ‘Tard of Thunder intentionally insulted a dead man.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  39. He admitted in his post that he had directed the comment at DRJ. And he made it clear that he didn’t apologize because of the threat, and I told him I believed him.

    And I asked him to continue commenting, and apologized for having put him on the spot like I did.

    So it was a completely voluntary ban. He ws embarrassed that he drove DRJ away, which he may have, and banned himself as a result.

    Your account is a little skewed.

    Patterico (a7a78e)

  40. “Sort of, but not really. Doc may have technically banned himself, but only after being threatened with banning if he didn’t give a coerced (and, therefore, meaningless) apology to someone who wasn’t even the target of his original comment, which itself wasn’t one-tenth as vile as the crap Levi spews every day.”

    Mmmmm . . . he called DRJ a “heartless bastard” (not realizing he was speaking to a woman).

    Patterico (a7a78e)

  41. people are dying who never died before.

    assistant devil's advocate (35b82f)

  42. They should pass a law against that.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  43. More from his doctor here…Sudden Cardiac Syndrome

    Patricia (f56a97)

  44. Mmmmm . . . he called DRJ a “heartless bastard” (not realizing he was speaking to a woman).

    Which certainly sounded more like an attack on Reff than on DRJ, but who it was directed at is neither here nor there. The point is, it wasn’t an inherently unreasonable statement, and it certainly wasn’t anywhere near as nasty as the stuff Levi spews with impunity every day.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  45. FWIW, I didn’t quit posting because of Doc Rampage’s comment or because of any specific comment or commenters, and I hope Doc Rampage will consider returning if I caused him to leave.

    DRJ (721b95)

  46. When you get older, you will realize that 58 is much younger than it seems to you now.

    For example…

    I turn 30 in July, my dad turns 57 in just over a week…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  47. “The point is, it wasn’t an inherently unreasonable statement, and it certainly wasn’t anywhere near as nasty as the stuff Levi spews with impunity every day.”

    I disagree. It matters who it’s directed at, and when someone violently attacks a polite commenter, I get mad.

    Doc, in his post about his self-banning, seemed to indicate that it was an attack on DRJ.

    In any event, I didn’t ban him and he is welcome back here, so stop acting like I banned him. I did not.

    Patterico (a7a78e)

  48. Can we stop talking about the non-banning of Doc, and start talking about the upcoming ban of Levi?

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  49. Scott, there is no reason to ban Levi. In fact, if it was aphrael or ada or apogee asking to ban him, it would make absolute sense to me.

    Levi is the poster boy for everything that has driven me further and further from the leftist viewpoint or worldview.

    I would hold up his opinions for all to see, shine a light on them, put a big blinking neon sign pointing toward them. HE…is the face of toady leftism today.

    Tim Russert was anything but unfair to leftist viewpoints, was anything but unfair to candidates who drifted leftward on major or minor issues, was anything but unfair to Democrats. For Levi to despise him for not being an outward extremist says all that there is to say about today’s modern leftism.

    For Levi to choose the day of a man’s passing to spew his venom, says all that there is to say about Levi’s character…or lack thereof.

    What this act does is to highlight the utter lack of dignity, the complete absence of moral compass, the vacuum of principles and the giant hole where a shred of decency should exist.

    Extreme leftism pisses on a man’s grave and thinks it’s cool. Michael Moore, Ted Rall, Code Pink, Berkeley moonbats who cheer death of their fellow Americans. This…is the disgrace of modern leftism. Don’t ban Levi. He is extreme leftism without the filters and camouflage. Make sure everyone you know, reads everything he says.

    And then ask them…is THIS the worldview you wish to share.

    cfbleachers (4040c7)

  50. Patricia, I watched that video, which was made the day he died. I want to see the autopsy results. I take my medical students to the Coroner’s office every year because that is the only place they can see autopsies anymore. Almost every year we see a case that was missed by the clinical people because they give us the non-trauma cases, if possible.

    I’ve seen a woman who died on a cruise ship for no obvious reason. She was placed in the refrigerator until the ship landed in LA and at autopsy it turned out she died of a perforated appendix missed by the ship’s doctor. Those students (hopefully) will never see another death from appendicitis.

    Another case was a 29-year-old woman who died suddenly in an ER while complaining of what they thought was asthma. She had a massive PE and the autopsy surgeon, who did a great job with students, turned the body over and opened the popliteal vein (behind the knee) and there was a huge clot. That was the source. In my 45 years in medicine, I have never seen that before. We just don’t open those veins.

    It is a tragedy that autopsies have gone away in medicine. The reason is the assumption that they are no longer needed since diagnostic studies are perfect. Plus they cost time and money. I have had to fight to get students access to autopsies as the deputy coroners are very busy and it takes extra time. I give each of them a copy of my book in thanks.

    I sure hope Russert has an autopsy and I still doubt that diagnosis.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  51. Guys, we can make Levi a non-person here, until Patterico bans him, if we ignore him totally. If a freak yammers and nobody responds does he get a tingle in his loins?

    Lol!

    Good luck with that little crusade buddy.

    Levi (76ef55)

  52. Scott, there is no reason to ban Levi. In fact, if it was aphrael or ada or apogee asking to ban him, it would make absolute sense to me.

    Levi is the poster boy for everything that has driven me further and further from the leftist viewpoint or worldview.

    I would hold up his opinions for all to see, shine a light on them, put a big blinking neon sign pointing toward them. HE…is the face of toady leftism today.

    Tim Russert was anything but unfair to leftist viewpoints, was anything but unfair to candidates who drifted leftward on major or minor issues, was anything but unfair to Democrats. For Levi to despise him for not being an outward extremist says all that there is to say about today’s modern leftism.

    For Levi to choose the day of a man’s passing to spew his venom, says all that there is to say about Levi’s character…or lack thereof.

    What this act does is to highlight the utter lack of dignity, the complete absence of moral compass, the vacuum of principles and the giant hole where a shred of decency should exist.

    Extreme leftism pisses on a man’s grave and thinks it’s cool. Michael Moore, Ted Rall, Code Pink, Berkeley moonbats who cheer death of their fellow Americans. This…is the disgrace of modern leftism. Don’t ban Levi. He is extreme leftism without the filters and camouflage. Make sure everyone you know, reads everything he says.

    And then ask them…is THIS the worldview you wish to share.

    Oh please. You guys can cheer on the dumbest war of all time, which has killed thousands upon thousands of innocent civilians over the years, and I’m the inhumane monster because I don’t have anything nice to say about a really shitty journalist whom I despised that just happened to die yesterday?

    You guys pretend to be good, decent people by saying nice things about liberals that get brain tumors and reporters that just up and die, but when it comes to the policies that you advocate and help to implement that end up killing thousands of innocent people, you show no sort of remorse, you assume no responsibility, and you don’t seem all that interested in preventing any further damage from being done by your moronic policies.

    So go on and on about my morals and how bankrupt I am because I don’t want to venerate some inept journalist after his passing, coming from a bunch of idiots that get off on needlessly starting wars, it really means nothing to me.

    And Russert was inept, emblematic of the problem that our media stars have had in the age of Bush, where they think ‘solid journalism’ involves listening to what a government official has to say, writing it down, and mindlessly parroting it unquestioningly to their audiences. He was dependent on access, and his over-riding journalistic principle was to not say anything that might compromise that access. The crappy job that Russert and his colleagues have done over the years is precisely why blogs like this exist. I’m not glad he’s dead, by any means, I wish he were still alive doing the same crappy job he had been doing. But it’s no loss for good journalism.

    Levi (76ef55)

  53. I think that for anyone who feels he or she must respond to a comment by Levi, “Blow me, bitch” is sufficient. Subject to our host’s tolerance, of course.

    nk (4bb2be)

  54. So go on and on about my morals and how bankrupt I am because I don’t want to venerate some inept journalist after his passing, coming from a bunch of idiots that get off on needlessly starting wars, it really means nothing to me.

    LMAO!

    This from a commenter that can’t refrain from undocumented assertions spiced with insults and cursing.

    That is way too much expended effort on any specific topic that “really means nothing to me.”

    Why does he waste his time and bile, since we’re all “a bunch of idiots” anyway, and “it really means nothing” to him?

    Paul (19c9b7)

  55. He lost TV privilages? his Xbox tossed the RRoD, and it’s away for repairs?

    He’s such a social reject this is the only way he can get any form of attention?

    Who knows Paul… Who knows…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  56. This from a commenter that can’t refrain from undocumented assertions spiced with insults and cursing.

    That is way too much expended effort on any specific topic that “really means nothing to me.”

    Why does he waste his time and bile, since we’re all “a bunch of idiots” anyway, and “it really means nothing” to him?

    I came from a very liberal board where Republicans were always a very tiny and pathetically equipped minority. They’re basically extinct over there now after 8 years of George Bush, and it’s pretty damn boring.

    I like it here because there are Republicans a-plenty, you’re no less pathetic and ill-equipped than my previous adversaries were, of course, but you’ve got the safety in numbers thing going on here that prevents you from running away. I can have it out with you, or a number of you, at my leisure, within minutes. It’s a convenience thing.

    Don’t pretend like you don’t like having me here, too.

    Levi (76ef55)

  57. Here were have the classic case of projection in emblematic form: extreme narcissism wedded into a raging insecurity complex, with the final output expressed with pseudo tough – guy prose.

    Now, who’s our Little Big Man? Who’s our Special Little Guy? Who’s using his Big Boy pants now? You are!

    Just keep stomping those little feet while you type, and try to keep your Slurpee from spittling your screen at the same time.

    Dmac (ea35f7)

  58. you’re no less pathetic and ill-equipped than my previous adversaries were, of course…

    this is the attitude, displayed over and over, which caused everyone here to think you’re a lame putz. question: what do you do for a living, levi?

    assistant devil's advocate (c9943a)

  59. Hey, Dmac:

    You don’t suppose the Big Fellow is related to someone else we both know? Maybe not, but the script sure sounds familiar.

    In any event, it is just a sick game.

    Eric Blair (1d11ac)

  60. Don’t pretend like you don’t like having me here, too.

    I simply wondered if “it really means nothing” to you, why do you bother?

    Where did I say I didn’t like havng you here? When have I ever called for your banning?

    On the contrary, Mr. Sunny, you’re pure comedy gold.

    I love it when you write paragraphs literally oozing with condescension like this:

    I like it here because there are Republicans a-plenty, you’re no less pathetic and ill-equipped than my previous adversaries were, of course, but you’ve got the safety in numbers thing going on here that prevents you from running away. I can have it out with you, or a number of you, at my leisure, within minutes. It’s a convenience thing.

    How can anyone ban such classholness?

    I love your argument tatics, such as using a book title to support undocumented assertions and flat-out lies while making a “point.”

    I also love your encounters with stupidity. This quote shoud be engraved on a solid silver plaque and hung in the Education Wing of the Moron Museum:

    “You don’t have to read something to know its contents. I’ve gotten A’s on papers I’ve written and tests I’ve taken about books I’ve never read.”

    What made that even more hilarious is that you expressed pride in that quote…and owned it.

    The best part, though, is when commenters like aphrael, who is a committed Democrat, schools you on facts and you don’t even realize it.

    So keep on posting your inane comments, Mr. Sunny. One never can tell when you’ll produce a comment of such sublime ignorance that it bears repeating…repeatedly.

    Heh-heh-heh.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  61. Here were have the classic case of projection in emblematic form: extreme narcissism wedded into a raging insecurity complex, with the final output expressed with pseudo tough – guy prose.

    I think Bertrand Russell said it best: it’s a shame that fools and fanatics are so sure of themselves while wise men are so full of doubt.

    Steverino (b42fd7)

  62. this is the attitude, displayed over and over, which caused everyone here to think you’re a lame putz. question: what do you do for a living, levi?

    If Republicans don’t think you’re a ‘lame putz,’ you are doing something wrong.

    What do you do for a living?

    Levi (76ef55)

  63. I simply wondered if “it really means nothing” to you, why do you bother?

    Your stupid little judgments about me are what mean nothing. I’m a visitor in a zoo, and you’re the animals in the cages. ‘Look at this
    one, he’s trying to say we found WMD in Iraq!’

    I love it when you write paragraphs literally oozing with condescension like this:

    I like it here because there are Republicans a-plenty, you’re no less pathetic and ill-equipped than my previous adversaries were, of course, but you’ve got the safety in numbers thing going on here that prevents you from running away. I can have it out with you, or a number of you, at my leisure, within minutes. It’s a convenience thing.

    How can anyone ban such classholness?

    That’s why I’m here.

    I love your argument tatics, such as using a book title to support undocumented assertions and flat-out lies while making a “point.”

    I also love your encounters with stupidity. This quote shoud be engraved on a solid silver plaque and hung in the Education Wing of the Moron Museum:

    “You don’t have to read something to know its contents. I’ve gotten A’s on papers I’ve written and tests I’ve taken about books I’ve never read.”

    What made that even more hilarious is that you expressed pride in that quote…and owned it.

    Actually, the joke is still on you guys on that one. You don’t realize it, but you guys were arguing against the very idea of summary, of recap, of paraphrasing. The over reaction to my comments set a precedent on this board that no one will ever be able to speak authoritatively on any topic unless they read all of the source documents on the issue. Literally within hours of being scolded for ‘trusting, not verifying,’ one of your yokel allies started parroting another of your yokel allies’ summary of the link I provided. You’ve basically stated as a community that no one that relates any information they’ve heard from someplace else should be listened to. Way to go, dummies.

    The best part, though, is when commenters like aphrael, who is a committed Democrat, schools you on facts and you don’t even realize it.

    I don’t require the fawning adoration of others to exist on a message board. Aphrael exhibits a lot of the symptoms of what’s wrong with most Democrats, this willingness to work with Republicans chief among them, even as Republicans continue to shit in our coffee at every turn. I don’t know that much about him, and as he’s a Democrat he’s about a million times a better human being in my eyes than the rest of you, but I don’t care about his judgments, either, just as I don’t care about yours.

    So keep on posting your inane comments, Mr. Sunny. One never can tell when you’ll produce a comment of such sublime ignorance that it bears repeating…repeatedly.

    Heh-heh-heh.

    Will do.

    Levi (76ef55)

  64. if republicans don’t think you’re a ‘lame putz’, you are doing something wrong.

    uh, no. better than antagonizing everybody in a major party is learning how to command bipartisan respect, something which may come to you with maturity.

    i’m a retired california lawyer, retired techbiz entrepreneur, currently a writer and part-time public official here in oregon. now it’s your turn: what do you do for a living, levi?

    assistant devil's advocate (d1d085)

  65. aphrael exhibits a lot of the symptoms of what’s wrong with most democrats, this willingness to work with republicans chief among them…

    please take a moment to consider whether “most democrats” might be right in this instance. unless you live in one of a very few places like berkeley, the only alternatives to working with republicans are killing, incarcerating or enslaving all of them. they aren’t going to submit to that without a fight.

    assistant devil's advocate (d1d085)

  66. Doesn’t Obama want to work with Republicans, or is he just toying with us like Levi?

    DRJ (721b95)

  67. Doesn’t Obama want to work with Republicans, or is he just toying with us like Levi?

    Illinois politicians have abandoned the Syndicate and joined The Combine. Democrats and Republicans share the loot.

    nk (4bb2be)

  68. “you’re no less pathetic and ill-equipped than my previous adversaries were, of course, but you’ve got the safety in numbers thing going on here that prevents you from running away.”

    – Levi

    Your “previous adversaries”? Jesus.

    This just in, Levi: YOU’RE NOT SOME FUCKING LITERARY MAGICIAN. You’re not Abe Lincoln or Eugene Debs or Gandhi or whoever it is you seem to think you are. You’ve gotten your ass handed to you in about 50% of the arguments you’ve engaged in. You know what that makes you? Average… or lucky. Any toddler can guess heads or tails.

    “Aphrael exhibits a lot of the symptoms of what’s wrong with most Democrats, this willingness to work with Republicans chief among them, even as Republicans continue to shit in our coffee at every turn.”

    – Levi

    Stupid, naive little child. You still have this idealistic notion in your head that the Democrats are the shining light of democracy, the saving grace of American politics, “different“.

    They’re no different. They go to the same parties, and their kids go to the same schools on the same fucking alumni scholarships.

    And you whine about aphrael’s politics? Idiot. You sit at the base of the table and snap at the other dogs, hoping to get a chance to beg for scraps from Democrats instead of Republicans… and you’re proud of this? You fancy yourself a visionary for this slavish preference of one master to another? You’re proud that you’re a Crip instead of a Blood?

    You’re deluded. I’m eighteen, and already I see what you don’t: that the only real solution is to stop settling for a choice between drinking buddies and up-end the fucking table.

    Leviticus (e1e9bb)

  69. Doesn’t Obama want to work with Republicans, or is he just toying with us like Levi?

    Obama doesn’t get it, either.

    Uh oh, I disagree with Obama about something! Does that shatter your whole world?

    Levi (76ef55)

  70. I don’t require the fawning adoration of others to exist on a message board. Aphrael exhibits a lot of the symptoms of what’s wrong with most Democrats, this willingness to work with Republicans chief among them, even as Republicans continue to shit in our coffee at every turn. I don’t know that much about him, and as he’s a Democrat he’s about a million times a better human being in my eyes than the rest of you, but I don’t care about his judgments, either, just as I don’t care about yours.

    Forming your opinion of someone’s moral stature based on their political leanings – when those leanings favor one of the two major political parties in the world’s oldest constitutional democratic republic – is a very short step away from ‘fascism.’

    Of course, not caring about anyone else’s opinion is simple megalomania, but one gets the idea that Levi wouldn’t be above a little coercion to make people think ‘correctly’ politically if he had the power to do so.

    chaos (9c54c6)

  71. Am I shattered that a twenty-something internet commenter – a prolific writer with a mediocre vocabulary and limited logic skills – believes he is the smartest person in the world?

    No.

    DRJ (721b95)

  72. You guys pretend to be good, decent people by saying nice things about liberals that get brain tumors and reporters that just up and die, but when it comes to the policies that you advocate and help to implement that end up killing thousands of innocent people, you show no sort of remorse, you assume no responsibility, and you don’t seem all that interested in preventing any further damage from being done by your moronic policies.

    Liberals have never, ever implemented or supported a policy that included in its results the deaths of thousands or millions of innocent people. Not in Vietnam in 1975, not in Cambodia in 1975, not in Afghanistan in 1979, not in Iran in 1979, not in Rwanda in 1994, not in Somalia in 1993, not in China in 1946-1949, nope, not anywhere, not ever!

    chaos (9c54c6)

  73. levi, you have twice now failed to answer my question “what do you do for a living?” although i politely answered your reciprocal, responsive question. now answer the fucking question already, or else i will assume that you are a catamite.

    assistant devil's advocate (d1d085)

  74. Oh please. You guys can cheer on the dumbest war of all time, which has killed thousands upon thousands of innocent civilians over the years, and I’m the inhumane monster because I don’t have anything nice to say about a really shitty journalist whom I despised that just happened to die yesterday?

    No, you’re the inhumane jerk who chose the day of a man’s death to piss on his grave.

    You act like a classless, mindless, kneejerk obsessive jackass about a geopolitical situation you don’t comprehend. You throw tantrums like a child and you lack any scholarly or gentlemanly traits.

    Nobody…nobody…here has cheered on the death of a single innocent civilian. (although I do remember seeing people in the Middle East cheering and uvulating and passing out candy at the death of our innocent civilians. Only a treasonous prick would say that’s ok, and then slander his own country for defending itself)

    You guys pretend to be good, decent people by saying nice things about liberals that get brain tumors and reporters that just up and die, but when it comes to the policies that you advocate and help to implement that end up killing thousands of innocent people, you show no sort of remorse, you assume no responsibility, and you don’t seem all that interested in preventing any further damage from being done by your moronic policies.

    Policies we “advocate that end up killing thousands of people, you show no remorse, take no responsibility”…are you deranged?

    Who are these thousands of innocent people who are being killed and how are they being killed? Where do you get your facts and statistics? You don’t have the faintest clue what you are talking about.

    Secondly, the WORLD agreed to take out Saddam during invasion of Kuwait. How many people died then…and what was your position on that campaign?

    How many people died in the Afghanistan campaign and what is your position on it?

    Regimes that harbor and enhance global terrorism got taken down. Regime change based upon the threat of expanding global terrorism was first ARGUED FOR AND passed into law…by the DEMOCRATS…and only an ignorant little puke would lie about that.

    So go on and on about my morals and how bankrupt I am because I don’t want to venerate some inept journalist after his passing, coming from a bunch of idiots that get off on needlessly starting wars, it really means nothing to me.

    The only idiot here…is the one calling everyone who disagrees with him…angry and vile names in comment after comment. You say you don’t care, but you are a liar on that subject. Your tantrum reactions and childlike hissy fits belie your little brave front that you put up.

    And you don’t have to venerate anyone, ever, just keep your classless comments to yourself on the day they die. You disgrace yourself with your lack of dignity and you cheapen any argument you attach to your ignorance.

    You come here to pick fights, because it makes you feel brave and strong…which seems to me, to be pretty solid evidence that in real life you are powerless, small and weak.

    You don’t come here to debate issues, you come here to puff your little chest up and to find some self-aggrandizement in trying to shout at faceless, nameless people who can’t see you.

    It makes you feel you have some ability to fight back against your pathetic little life. To scream and swear at “authority figures”…I think you have “Daddy issues”…(and maybe some “Mommy” issues as well). And you take them out on everyone here…because you don’t have the capacity to resolve them yourself.

    cfbleachers (4040c7)

  75. levi, you have twice now failed to answer my question “what do you do for a living?” although i politely answered your reciprocal, responsive question. now answer the fucking question already, or else i will assume that you are a catamite.

    Dude, I am so totally a catamite!

    How did you guess?

    Levi (76ef55)

  76. Actually, the joke is still on you guys on that one. You don’t realize it, but you guys were arguing against the very idea of summary, of recap, of paraphrasing. The over reaction to my comments set a precedent on this board that no one will ever be able to speak authoritatively on any topic unless they read all of the source documents on the issue.

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    Thanks for proving my prediction, bucko:

    So keep on posting your inane comments, Mr. Sunny. One never can tell when you’ll produce a comment of such sublime ignorance that it bears repeating…repeatedly.

    No, the joke’s on you< Mr. Sunny. See, we already read source documents. In fact, we read your sources when you actually link to them, because there is no more sublime pleasure in writing than beating classless idiots opponents like you over the head with their own words. Many of us have refuted entire arguments posted by you with your own words or links. I suspect that may be the major reason you now post arguments entirely composed of uneducated opinions, undocumented assertions and flat-out lies masquerading as facts.

    I also find it over-the-top hilarious that the same commenter that wrote this:

    The over reaction to my comments set a precedent on this board that no one will ever be able to speak authoritatively on any topic unless they read all of the source documents on the issue.

    also wrote this:

    “You don’t have to read something to know its contents. I’ve gotten A’s on papers I’ve written and tests I’ve taken about books I’ve never read.”

    because we all know you don’t read source documents; you simply know what ‘s in them. And the fact that your arguments rely entirely on uneducated opinions, undocumented assertions and flat-out lies masquerading as facts generated by your fevered brain proves it.

    Why?

    Because anyone who would write

    you’re no less pathetic and ill-equipped than my previous adversaries were

    Your stupid little judgments about me are what mean nothing. I’m a visitor in a zoo, and you’re the animals in the cages

    that ooze such condescension would NEVER pass up the chance to feed his ego and beat us over the head with in-context quotes pulled from links and source documents, proving once and for all he really is the smartest person in the world. No, you simply post uneducated opinions, undocumented assertions and flat-out lies masquerading as facts and puff out your chest when we don’t blindingly agree with you.

    By the way, nice goalpost moving in statement #2. Did your goalposts come with wheels, or did you weld them on yourself?

    Oh yeah, about this:

    but I don’t care about his judgments, either, just as I don’t care about yours.

    Which brings us back to my earlier observation: for someone that “doesn’t care” about my judgements, you certainly expend much effort writing lengthy responses over them.

    Like I said, Mr. Sunny, you’re pure comedy gold.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  77. Hey folks: I smell college student (or drop out) all over this one.

    I teach freshmen, and I invariably get the “socially responsible” young men who blow too much weed, drink too much, BS about geopolitics (when they can’t name their own state’s senators, in my experience), and so forth. Because they don’t study, they don’t do well in class. And then they blame the prof, just like they blamed their parents or GW Bush for the ills that they perceive. There is very little sense of ownership on their part, but a demand on others to own the slights that they, again, perceive.

    They are intellectual hypocrites—demanding great sensitivity to their own issues while the freedom to talk trash (in an curiously over-macho way) about the issues of others.

    Twenge wrote a great book, “Generation Me,” that describes this weird mind-set I see pretty often these days.

    Mind you, there are lots and lots of great students. But there remains a sizable group who sound a whole lot like you-know-who.

    ADA—I think you know the answer to your question. When you work at Kinko’s (after your degree in Social Justice), you need to feel big and tough, right?

    In the final analysis, this “dude” just likes to fight. So it’s like the parable of wrestling a pig: it wastes your time, gets you all muddy…and the pig likes it.

    DRJ, it is wonderful to see your posts, by the way.

    Eric Blair (1d11ac)

  78. So Eric…we can assume you don’t give out A’s on reports and tests covering unread books? :)

    Paul (19c9b7)

  79. Yeah, I run into people who think they are smart enough to wing it. I just gave four of them “D”s. And I’m sure that, to them, I am the bad guy for doing so. But in each case, the people scored FAR below the class average. Or didn’t follow directions on terms papers, etc.

    I find that the people who brag about writing reports on unread books and such, earning “A”s—well, their transcripts tell an entirely different story. A little bit further down the alphabet, as it were.

    Except when they hire someone to write the report for them. But then, the person they hire DID read the book!

    And then we expel them for academic dishonesty. During the hearings, the formerly tough guys weep and snivel about the pressures of college, generally speaking, as an excuse for why they cheat. Trust me, if those folks spent as much time studying as they did bragging, they wouldn’t need to hire someone to cheat for them.

    Oh, I suppose there are some supergeniuses out there who can write “A” term papers on unread material. But the claims of such people are far more common than the actual people who can do that sort of thing! Furthermore, think of who even they are shortchanging: other students, and moreover, themselves.

    Oh well. When I was 20 I did all kinds of things I wish I hadn’t. That is the one truism that rings on down the ages!

    But yes, generally speaking, people who brag often need to do so because the harsh reality is not quite so golden.

    Eric Blair (1d11ac)

  80. Or didn’t follow directions on terms papers, etc.

    Oh, come on, Eric.

    They would have to read the directions to follow them. See, they simply “knew” what you were looking for. Heh.

    Just like Mr. Sunny “knows” the contents of a 300-page PDF document and a book he never read while using the book’s title to support an argument. :)

    Paul (19c9b7)

  81. Haven’t been here in awhile and like rubbernecking at an accident just had to see where Levi would go on this one. Rather than simply saying, “What a shame. Best wishes to his family.” The pinhead shows what everyone knows – Levi is an immature, low class douchebag. Imagine that. You are a truly sad, meaningless, pathetic, smidgen of an individual.

    If you guys found out I got hit by a bus tomorrow, would you have a tribute thread for me?
    I’d go piss on your grave after I left the ticker tape parade, you useless little cretin.

    Jack Klompus (b796b4)

  82. Despite my pledge to avoid the vulgarity, I call an exception for this case: Levi, you really are a pathetic lowlife sack of shit. Your overinflated sense of your puny intellect in combination with you juvenile, aggro posturing all adds up to the endless abuse you deservedly get heaped upon you. In the grand scheme of things, always look back and remember that you served the purpose of being a punching bag on a internet comment board. What a meaningful life. Loser.

    Jack Klompus (b796b4)

  83. “I’d go piss on your grave after I left the ticker tape parade, you useless little cretin.”

    – Jack Klompus

    Still a macho-posturing dumbass, I see. You realize that saying that puts you on the same level as the individual you seek to indict, don’t you?

    Leviticus (26e9a2)

  84. I’m writing this as a commenter and not as a former guest blogger. In other words, it’s simply my opinion and no one has to do what I suggest. However, while I think it’s fine to engage in discussion with Levi, I encourage you not to be too hostile toward him no matter how angry he makes you feel.

    I think Eric Blair is right that Levi may be a college drop-out who is unhappy with his life. If it makes him feel in control to act out on the internet, so be it. Life will teach him whatever lessons he needs to learn, just as it has taught the rest of us.

    DRJ (721b95)

  85. Am I shattered that a twenty-something internet commenter – a prolific writer with a mediocre vocabulary and limited logic skills – believes he is the smartest person in the world?

    Not in the world, no. Smarter than all of you though, anyway.

    Levi (76ef55)

  86. Not in the world, no. Smarter than all of you though, anyway.

    Such a world does not exist, Tiny Dancer…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  87. Which brings us back to my earlier observation: for someone that “doesn’t care” about my judgements, you certainly expend much effort writing lengthy responses over them.

    Give me a break. I have to follow the flow of the conversation, and the conversation around here invariably becomes about me, and how much of an idiot you think I am. I have literally nothing else to respond to other than yours and your buddies’ stupid, distractive judgments about me, which I assure you, I do not care about. Just because I respond to them, doesn’t mean they hurt my feelings or that I take them seriously. You are a Republican after all!

    Levi (76ef55)

  88. Of course, not caring about anyone else’s opinion is simple megalomania, but one gets the idea that Levi wouldn’t be above a little coercion to make people think ‘correctly’ politically if he had the power to do so.

    I never said I don’t care about anyone’s opinion. I said I don’t care about a bunch of internet Republicans’ opinions about me.

    Levi (76ef55)

  89. DRJ, I did a sabbatical at the University of Hawai’i a few years ago. While I was there, I had to live at some distance from the university to get a decent rent, so I spent quite a bit of time driving to and fro…and listened to talk radio.

    One fellow, in full on Hawai’ian pidgin, said something that made me pull over to the side of the road and guffaw:

    “No need to go to school, brah. Nature, she teach you what you need to know.”

    Then I thought it over. Of course, school is important (and not just about the academic side of things). But nature does indeed teach us all many harsh lessons.

    As for your comment, the person is just a garden variety troll, trying to get people upset. I usually wish people like that a whole raft of friends just like themselves. It’s not even an insult!

    The Russert business reminds me of something much more important than people defending classless and cruel comments. I hope that every father who reads this—or the father’s of folks reading this—has a great day today.

    Life is too short for nastiness.

    Eric Blair (1d11ac)

  90. ” I said I don’t care about a bunch of internet Republicans’ opinions about me”

    – Levi

    What about the array of internet Democrats you seem to have pushed into the rival camp with all your arrogant declarations of superiority?

    Leviticus (aa95f4)

  91. In the final analysis, this “dude” just likes to fight.

    Well no shit buddy. What is the point of politics? I can’t come in here and ask you people to defend your positions?

    You’re some teacher, big deal. You’re the second person in this thread to make that same appeal to authority. “I have such and such a job, therefore, I’m smarter than you!” You don’t win arguments that way. I can make appeals, too. Why don’t I tell you about my dad, a Lt. Col. in the Army, who works at the Pentagon with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who would agree with every word I’ve said on this board, who has told me ‘this is the worst I’ve ever seen American politics get,’ who spent years in the Middle East trying to modernize Arabian militaries and calls it the most pointless thing he’s ever done, and who holds nothing but contempt for the Bush administration and their supporters for what they’ve done to the military that he loves and that has done so much for him and his family?

    You want to argue that way? I shouldn’t have to tell you anything about me, and you shouldn’t have to tell me anything about you. We should let the arguments stand for themselves, no? Now at this stage, most of the arguments are about how much of an idiot I am, and this is why we’re talking about these facetious appeals in the first place. And if you want to just keep posting details of your resume, you go right ahead, I don’t expect anything more from you, from any of the people around here. But they don’t impress me, they don’t further your ‘point’ that I’m some idiot. If you tried to really argue with me, about something that matters, now that would impress me. I’ve put up a lot of stuff on this board, someone proved me wrong about some Republicans beating Clinton back in the ’70s, but other than that, people usually just walk away from most of what I say, or simply make absurd arguments about how you can’t know anything for certain if all you read is a summary.

    Let’s see how this goes…

    Levi (76ef55)

  92. We have had our own troll problems on the Festering Swamp, which was driving out good conversation and making us lose intelligent, worthwhile contributors. By definition, you can’t reason with a troll. I like Eric’s solution of discussing Trollology 101 with others, not with the troll.

    Bradley J. Fikes (0ea407)

  93. What about the array of internet Democrats you seem to have pushed into the rival camp with all your arrogant declarations of superiority?

    I don’t need to be in your little club, either.

    If I’ve pushed into you into the rival camp, that’s your problem. My ‘arrogant declarations of superiority?’ Have you been paying attention for any of the last 8 years? What about these Republicans, that laughabily insist that after the many failures of Bush’s foreign policy, they are the ones that we should still consider the national security experts? Remember when they tried to save Terri Schaivo? Their stance on abortion? Their arguments against gay marriage? Remember ‘We’ll be greeted as liberators’ as an excuse to not plan for anything else? Bush thinks that giving up golf is how you show solidarity with ‘some mom’ that lost her kid in his dumb war, and I’m the arrogant one?

    Levi (76ef55)

  94. “I have to follow the flow of the conversation, and the conversation around here invariably becomes about me”

    Here, people, is the essence of this little troll. I know it can be amusing but, when you reward behavior with attention, what do you get ?

    Mike K (2cf494)

  95. I’m writing this as a commenter and not as a former guest blogger. In other words, it’s simply my opinion and no one has to do what I suggest. However, while I think it’s fine to engage in discussion with Levi, I encourage you not to be too hostile toward him no matter how angry he makes you feel.

    I don’t mind the hostililty, it would just be nice if there was something else besides hostility. Thanks anyway.

    I think Eric Blair is right that Levi may be a college drop-out who is unhappy with his life. If it makes him feel in control to act out on the internet, so be it. Life will teach him whatever lessons he needs to learn, just as it has taught the rest of us.

    Well that’s a nice little psychological evaluation, but did it ever occur to you that I might just be interested in talking about American politics?

    Levi (76ef55)

  96. Levi,

    I like to talk about American politics, too, but I don’t like to be berated simply because I don’t agree with you. You aren’t sincerely discussing politics when you do that. When you talk at me instead of calmly trying to communicate your point of view or even find common ground, you make it clear you only want to talk to people who agree with you. That’s not a real discussion … that’s an echo chamber.

    DRJ (721b95)

  97. Levi,

    I like to talk about American politics, too, but I don’t like to be berated simply because I don’t agree with you. You aren’t sincerely discussing politics when you do that. When you talk at me instead of calmly trying to communicate your point of view or even find common ground, you make it clear you only want to talk to people who agree with you. That’s not a real discussion … that’s an echo chamber.

    That doesn’t make any sense. I mean, why am I here? Why do I rarely visit my old liberal haunt? If I only wanted to talk to people I agree with, why am I not at the DailyKos?

    If you don’t like being berated for your political views, well I don’t know what to tell you except that you should grow some thicker skin. I’m pretty pissed off at what your side has done to our country over the past 8 years, I think I’m entitled to some berating. Don’t bitch about it, give me some rational argument for why you support what you support. I don’t see any sort of smart reasoning or clear logic behind any of the things that Republicans have done or want to do, so I’m going to call it stupid. Prove to me that you’re not.

    Levi (76ef55)

  98. Levi,

    I don’t see any sort of smart reasoning or clear logic behind any of the things that Republicans have done or want to do, so I’m going to call it stupid. Prove to me that you’re not.

    You’re understanding of discussion is backwards. Patterico has repeatedly asked commenters to state in fair and accurate terms the arguments of their opponents. That’s the basis for discussion – where you show you understand the other person’s argument without mischaracterizing or demonizing it. I’m willing to do that with you. Are you willing to do that with me? I haven’t seen it so far.

    DRJ (721b95)

  99. DRJ,

    Levi will never, ever, ever, ever state your argument fairly.

    Don’t kid yourself.

    Patterico (f52385)

  100. You are casting pearls before swine, DRJ. And it would not bother me so much if the pearl were not you.

    nk (4bb2be)

  101. P & NK,

    I’ve learned a lot from internet discussion and Patterico’s rule for understanding other people’s arguments was one of the best things I learned. I think Levi is smart enough to learn from it, too.

    DRJ (721b95)

  102. ’ve put up a lot of stuff on this board, someone proved me wrong about some Republicans beating Clinton back in the ’70s, but other than that, people usually just walk away from most of what I say,

    This is rich. One more than one occasion, I’ve prove you wrong when you said X. Then you have turned around and claimed you didn’t say X, you really said Y. Why should anyone waste his time trying to make logical points when you lie like that?

    To give you a more concrete example, I tried to engage you about John McCain’s alleged infidelity. In the breadth of one paragraph you first admitted that you didn’t really know for sure whether McCain had been unfaithful to his first wife, then you said he was “boning” his eventual second wife and “you [meaning me] know it.” When I called you on your self-contradiction, you made some smart-assed response about how I didn’t want to argue honestly.

    At that point, I gave up any hope of ever discussing anything with you rationally. You’re not capable of rational discussion. You’re not capable of intellectual honesty. You’re not capable of admitting when you’re wrong. And you’re not capable of civility. I’d sooner teach my wife’s cat the finer points of linear calculus than hold a discussion with you.

    or simply make absurd arguments about how you can’t know anything for certain if all you read is a summary.

    Again, a classic illustration of your own ignorance. It’s NOT an absurd argument. The truth is you can’t have certain knowledge of a document that you’ve only read a summary of. You can claim you do — and Lord knows you have done so frequently — but any “knowledge” you might have is superficial and fed to you by someone else who may have gotten it wrong. Except you don’t know whether he’s gotten it wrong because you didn’t read the material.

    To call such an argument absurd without even attempting to analyze its merits merely reveals to all of us your intellectual dishonesty.

    Steverino (b42fd7)

  103. I have literally nothing else to respond to other than yours and your buddies’ stupid, distractive judgments about me, which I assure you, I do not care about.

    Which is why you keep responding to them…because you most assuredly do not care about them.

    Just because I respond to them, doesn’t mean they hurt my feelings or that I take them seriously.

    Well, if you’re so indifferent, why do you keep responding?

    You could simply ignore them. But…you don’t.

    If you’re so darned superior and smarter, why do you constsntly feel the need to prove it?

    It’s because..you aren’t.

    Only a truly stupid clueless idiot would claim:

    “You don’t have to read something to know its contents. I’ve gotten A’s on papers I’ve written and tests I’ve taken about books I’ve never read.”

    So get over yourself.

    Well that’s a nice little psychological evaluation, but did it ever occur to you that I might just be interested in talking about American politics?

    Well then…start talking about American politics and stop responding to distractive judgments about you that you repeatedly assure us you do not care about.

    We should let the arguments stand for themselves, no?

    This from a commenter who uses PDF documents and titles of books unread by himself for argument support. Because he “knows” the contents.

    I don’t see any sort of smart reasoning or clear logic behind any of the things that Republicans have done or want to do, so I’m going to call it stupid.

    No surprise there. Judging by content of what you post (I actually read your comments, I don’t assume I “know” the contents) you are completely bereft of logic, reason or ethics while posting uneducated opinions, undocumented assertions and flat-out lies masquerading as facts.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  104. Yep. Undergrad major, probably in comparative sociology . Arguments from authority are bad, except whe you yourself make them. Like I wrote, the classic freshman conceit. This is about argument not debate or discussion. DRJ, it was nice of you to try, but it’s just about anger and fighting. Subject change? again Happy FD!

    Eric Blair (1aca43)

  105. For my part, I will from here on refer to Levi as Levi. Caution. Not safe for work or for home either.

    nk (4bb2be)

  106. That’s nice Levi, but the point remains that you have the odd stance of not caring about the opinion of people you converse with, which makes little sense. What a waste of time to talk with someone whose thoughts and feelings hold no weight in your mind.

    I never said I don’t care about anyone’s opinion. I said I don’t care about a bunch of internet Republicans’ opinions about me.

    but I don’t care about his judgments, either, just as I don’t care about yours.

    You’re boring me.

    chaos (9c54c6)

  107. “If I’ve pushed into you into the rival camp, that’s your problem. My ‘arrogant declarations of superiority?’ Have you been paying attention for any of the last 8 years? What about these Republicans, that laughabily insist that after the many failures of Bush’s foreign policy, they are the ones that we should still consider the national security experts? Remember when they tried to save Terri Schaivo? Their stance on abortion? Their arguments against gay marriage? Remember ‘We’ll be greeted as liberators’ as an excuse to not plan for anything else? Bush thinks that giving up golf is how you show solidarity with ’some mom’ that lost her kid in his dumb war, and I’m the arrogant one?”

    – Levi

    In short, you think that the arrogance and stupidity of your ideological enemies (Bill Frist with Schaivo, Rumsfeld with Iraq, Bush with pretty much anything) entitles you to act with the exact same arrogance that you say merits our scorn, and somehow maintain the moral high ground.

    Who on this blog has proclaimed the type of superiority you cling to on a post-by-post basis? No one (that I can think of, anyway). The vast majority of conservative commenters you berate and belittle express no absolute, Word-Of-God-Writ-Large certainty about their position; they just give their damn position, without all the rhetorical bells and whistles and half-assed jabs you seems to take such juvenile delight in. What’s more, the vast majority are willing to debate their position… just not with you, because you treat them like they’re hapless morons or bloodthirsty, bigoted monsters.

    Yes, the Republican Party has fucked up. I think so, ada thinks so, aphrael and steve and Psyberian think so. The difference between us and you (or at least between me and you; I won’t presume to speak for everyone) is that we’re (or I’m) not willing to overlook the complicity of the Democratic party, whose obsequious cowering has cost this country so much.

    I am a liberal; I vote for Democrats, and can never see voting for a Republican, but I vote for Democrats as the lesser of two evils, not as candidates who represent me or whom I can be proud of.

    I think the two-party system is dead, and I plan on doing my best to dump its carcass into the incinerator as soon as I’m equipped to do so. In the meantime – in the face of a system where the parties, as parties (not as a sum of individuals) are totally bankrupt – I think the best hope for progress lies in the willingness of intelligent people to engage in honest, polite discussion, and to build bridges amongst themselves; to build up social capital not dependent on this system or its partisan manifestations.

    I’m in a position to do that, because I’ve been willing to engage conservative commentators – many of whom are smarter than me, I might add – in genuine discussion over the past couple of years. I’ve won some arguments, and I’ve lost some arguments; I’ve admitted my wrongs, and I’ve had wrongs admitted to me. And because of that, I’ve gained the respect (and the earnest ear) of a segment of the population you’re apparently willing to write off in a petulant fit: people like DRJ, Patterico, nk, Pablo, Stashiu3, Scott Jacobs, etc. (there’s more, but I know that you don’t really care).

    That’s what I’m interested in, at this point: not scoring political points for a party that I loathe only slightly less than the alternative, but sharpening myself, shoring up my own positions and my arguments, and ultimately coming to a clearer vision of what I want to make of American political reality.

    It says in the Bible that “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” It makes sense to me that there has to be some opposition for that to work.

    Leviticus (358cc7)

  108. Leviticus,

    Thank you for writing such a detailed response to Mr. Sunny. I have a far better understnding of your positions because of it. I greatly disagree with you on several points, of course.

    I hope Patterico picks up on the “two-party-system-is-dead” paragraph…there’s a great post and discussion in there.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  109. I bookmarked your comment, Leviticus. It’s the best (of many) that you’ve ever written.

    DRJ (721b95)

  110. I completely agree with DRJ.

    not scoring political points for a party that I loathe only slightly less than the alternative

    The last couple of years, this has been my view of Republicans as well…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  111. Leviticus, did I hear you say you’re 18? I think I used to be you. That’s very nice argument. It’s a pity that it will be wasted on its intended subject.

    Pablo (99243e)

  112. I also admire you, Leviticus. At age eighteen I cared about girls, guns and swords edged weapons. In that order, thankfully. Guitars, too, a little bit later.

    nk (4bb2be)

  113. I don’t often agree with you Leviticus, and we really butted heads for a while at the start, but you are willing to at least listen to the other side, and that’s impressive…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  114. “I think I used to be you”

    – Pablo

    Considering the general intelligence of your comments and your skills at debate/argument, I’ll take that as a rather large compliment; I appreciate it. I’m not sure I buy the implication that my politics will change drastically as I get older, but given the amount they’ve changed in the last year alone, that’s certainly a possibility.

    Are you a lawyer, by the way?

    “we really butted heads for a while at the start”

    – Scott Jacobs

    That we did.

    I was thinking about that: if the two of us (and Pablo; I butted heads with him for a while, too) can come to mutually respect one another – considering the vitriol of our early exchanges – then there’s no reason that the same might not eventually be said of, say, Levi and daleyrocks.

    Maybe. Maybe not. Depends on the intentions of the parties involved.

    Thanks also to DRJ and nk. The two of you have been role models for me in re: proper behavior in an online community.

    As an aside: this little post-partisan love-in we’ve got going on will either open Levi’s eyes to the constructive potential of simple respect, or it will drive him utterly crazy and cause him to place me in the “Traitor to the Cause” category. Either way is fine with me. I’ve got no loyalty to his cause to begin with, not anymore.

    Leviticus (e3a106)

  115. I find that unlikely. Unlike you, Levi’s a complete moron…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  116. You’re understanding of discussion is backwards. Patterico has repeatedly asked commenters to state in fair and accurate terms the arguments of their opponents. That’s the basis for discussion – where you show you understand the other person’s argument without mischaracterizing or demonizing it. I’m willing to do that with you. Are you willing to do that with me? I haven’t seen it so far.

    I can do that, I’ve been doing that. Which of your horribly incorrect positions would you like me to characterize perfectly for you? What doesn’t fit under the general catch-all of ‘cut taxes, deregulate, kill terrorists?’

    Levi (76ef55)

  117. The idea is to take a topic and state the other person’s position in a way such that the other person would agree with your characterization. This ensures that you’re arguing substance, rather than engaging in a never-ending cycle of complaints that the other guy is mischaracterizing your position.

    You’ll never do it, because it requires you to put aside your anger long enough to understand the other guy’s point. That’s the only way that you’ll be able to express it, such that he’ll agree that you stated in correctly. That means you can’t mock it while you restate it.

    I will Paypal 10 U.S. dollars to you the first time a conservative commenter tells me that you have done that with them — that you have stated his position on a controversial topic, without mocking it, to his satisfaction.

    I feel safe saying this because, as I say, you’re incapable of it.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  118. Levi, while the deceased’s body is still warm, have enough respect to keep your negative opinion to yourself.

    I think that Russert strived to be fair-minded. He asked everyone tough questions.

    What an insightful comment Leviticus (108).

    Psyberian (9f6817)

  119. Which of your horribly incorrect positions would you like me to characterize perfectly for you?

    The gift that keeps on giving. Fools and fanatics…

    Steverino (b42fd7)

  120. Levi is like a slightly more annoying Gore Vidal…

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  121. Which of your horribly incorrect positions would you like me to characterize perfectly for you? What doesn’t fit under the general catch-all of ‘cut taxes, deregulate, kill terrorists?’

    Since Levi thinks that cutting taxes, deregulation and killing terrorists are all — in his words — “horribly incorrect position”, we can then conclude that Levi wants to raise taxes, increase regulation, and set terrorists free.

    Levi, The Terrorist Enabler.

    Steverino (b42fd7)

  122. The idea is to take a topic and state the other person’s position in a way such that the other person would agree with your characterization. This ensures that you’re arguing substance, rather than engaging in a never-ending cycle of complaints that the other guy is mischaracterizing your position.

    You’ll never do it, because it requires you to put aside your anger long enough to understand the other guy’s point. That’s the only way that you’ll be able to express it, such that he’ll agree that you stated in correctly. That means you can’t mock it while you restate it.

    I will Paypal 10 U.S. dollars to you the first time a conservative commenter tells me that you have done that with them — that you have stated his position on a controversial topic, without mocking it, to his satisfaction.

    I feel safe saying this because, as I say, you’re incapable of it.

    Where do you want me to start?

    Iraq War?

    Republicans believe Saddam Hussein was a serious threat, that he had weapons of mass destruction and was closely connected with terrorists, and his removal was therefore necessary not only for our own national security, but also for the world’s, and also for the good of the Iraqi people. As an element of the broader war on terror, one of the objectives for the Iraq war is to establish a strong democracy in a Middle Eastern nation, in the hope that democratizing the region eliminates an environment for terrorists to gather and train.

    That about right?

    Levi (76ef55)

  123. Lemme do Jeremiah Wright quick before work.

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and un-American, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies. Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as racist and un-American as Rev. Wright.

    Am I doing this right?

    Levi (76ef55)

  124. Aw come on, I want to pass the little test! When do I get my ten dollars?

    Levi (76ef55)

  125. Never. Patterico gave himself a loophole: “the first time a conservative commenter tells me that you have done that with them — that you have stated his position on a controversial topic, without mocking it, to his satisfaction.”

    Since I doubt any conservative commenter is going to go out of their way to earn you ten dollars, you’re hosed.
    Sneaky lawyer trick.

    Leviticus (1086cb)

  126. Never. Patterico gave himself a loophole: “the first time a conservative commenter tells me that you have done that with them — that you have stated his position on a controversial topic, without mocking it, to his satisfaction.”

    Since I doubt any conservative commenter is going to go out of their way to earn you ten dollars, you’re hosed.
    Sneaky lawyer trick.

    I caught that, too. Patterico could still let me know if I’m doing it right, since he’s trying to teach me a life lesson or some shit.

    Levi (76ef55)

  127. He is trying to teach you how to not be a dick. As we all suspected, you have failed, miserably.

    Leviticus is alright.

    JD (75f5c3)

  128. Republicans believe Saddam Hussein was a serious threat, that he had weapons of mass destruction and was closely connected with terrorists, and his removal was therefore necessary not only for our own national security, but also for the world’s, and also for the good of the Iraqi people.

    As do Democrats.

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and un-American…

    So does Obama.

    Pablo (99243e)

  129. Leviticus,

    Are you a lawyer, by the way?

    Nope. And I resent the implication, Sir!

    /kidding, mostly

    Pablo (99243e)

  130. Levi #123 and 124,

    I knew you were smart enough to state the opposing arguments and, although I have a few quibbles with your statements, IMO you did a good job. Now the question is why do you refuse to honestly debate these concerns?

    DRJ (8695bd)

  131. DRJ – It is easier for it to debate imaginary voices in his head rather than real people, that might actually respond.

    JD (75f5c3)

  132. in re: DRJ’s comment,

    I think Patterico owes Levi ten dollars (although DRJ’s question remains exceedingly valid).

    Leviticus (579843)

  133. I knew you were smart enough to state the opposing arguments and, although I have a few quibbles with your statements, IMO you did a good job. Now the question is why do you refuse to honestly debate these concerns?

    Just because I can restate your arguments doesn’t mean I don’t think they’re pathetic and that the reasoning is laughably flawed and incoherent. The last time I tried to walk through the Jeremiah Wright ‘controversy’ with one of you, I was told that I just didn’t get it because I don’t understand how string theory changes the definition of pronouns. How can I be expected to walk away from an argument like that thinking that cftbleachers is anything but a total moron?

    Levi (76ef55)

  134. If you want to engage in reasonable discourse you need to address arguments in a logical way. The point isn’t to change anyone’s opinion. The point is to have a friendly, courteous discussion that identifies the strengths and weaknesses of each position.

    DRJ (8695bd)

  135. Aside from being strident and offensive, you are a stranger to the truth. During a very patient attempt at discourse with you, I made a reference to understanding the time element of one of your baseless arguments.

    I have been as patient as anyone who disagrees with your underlying arguments and stance…much of the time.

    My patience has worn thin with you….and your inability to discuss any issue without ad hominem insults and puerile tantrums.

    cfbleachers (4040c7)

  136. The quibbles are important.

    Pick one topic, debate it with DRJ, and iron out the quibbles.

    Do that and I’ll send the ten dollars.

    I’ll ask her to do the same with your position. She gets nothing for it. Unfair, bur you’ll be the prodigal son.

    Then, if you like, you can go double or nothing: debate it without insults for ten substantive, meaningful comments each, and you get 20 dollars.

    Patterico (2aada5)

  137. I’m game. Levi, if you accept, pick either 123 or 124 and we’ll discuss it point by point.

    DRJ (8695bd)

  138. And if it does not accept, or pass, the test?

    What then? What’s proven or dis-proven?

    Apogee (366e8b)

  139. Hide him during a war
    It was about a month ago when a man in Amsterdam felt that he needed to confess, so went to his priest:

    “Forgive me Father, for I have sinned. During WWII I hid a refugee in my attic.”

    “Well,” answered the priest, “that’s not a sin.”

    “But I made him agree to pay me 20 Gulden for every week he stayed.”

    “I admit that wasn’t good, but you did it for a good cause.”

    “Oh, thank you, Father; that eases my mind. I have one more question…”

    “What is that, my son?”

    “Do I have to tell him the war is over?”

    love2008 (1b037c)

  140. Leviticus – I don’t think Levi is capable of rationally discussing any topic the way you are. Apart from actually knowing something about a topic, he is just not capable of it.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  141. To be clear, Levi, here’s my understanding of Patrick’s challenge:

    You pick the subject – either the topic in your comment 123 or 124 – and I’ll respond by stating my understanding of the liberal view of that topic.

    Then we will discuss each statement until we agree they are, respectively, reasonable approximations of the views of conservatives/liberals. I won’t agree to do this unless you discuss it without insulting me. In other words, you can’t call me stupid, etc.

    If you can do that, it’s my understanding that you win $10 from Patterico.

    If you then decide to go double or nothing, we will also debate the merits of the topic “without insults for ten substantive, meaningful comments each.”

    Okay?

    DRJ (8695bd)

  142. Aside from being strident and offensive, you are a stranger to the truth. During a very patient attempt at discourse with you, I made a reference to understanding the time element of one of your baseless arguments.

    One of my baseless arguments?

    Did you or did you not assert that a quote from 2007 provides context for a quote from 2001, and your ace in the hole for that assertion was string theory?

    Levi (76ef55)

  143. The Iraq war is way too complicated, there’s way too many things going on, way too many ways we could take it, way too many topics.

    Let’s do Jeremiah Wright. It’s more simple. Though I don’t need you to restate the ‘liberal’ position on Jeremiah Wright, I don’t even know what it is. I know how I feel about it, and I’m aware that virtually nobody on the left feels the same way that I do, but I can only answer for myself. I don’t want to defend what Lanny Davis or Hillary Clinton have to say about it, I want to defend what I have to say about it.

    So like, in this thread or what?

    Levi (76ef55)

  144. The Iraq war is way too complicated, there’s way too many things going on, way too many ways we could take it, way too many topics.

    Oh, come on.

    You’ve been yelling about the Iraq War and all of its permutations for weeks on this site, even when that wasn’t the topic of the thread.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  145. I don’t know how to proceed.

    DRJ (8695bd)

  146. I don’t know exactly how we should proceed.

    DRJ (8695bd)

  147. I don’t know exactly how we should proceed, especially if you don’t want me to state the liberal position. In that case, the initial discussion will be limited to dissecting your statement of the conservative viewpoint. Are you sure you want to do it that way?

    DRJ (8695bd)

  148. Sorry about the multiple posts. I have a malfunctioning keyboard.

    DRJ (8695bd)

  149. It’s OK DRJ. It builds suspense.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  150. Levi,

    While you decide about the liberal statement, let’s start discussing your statement of the conservative view of Jeremiah Wright.

    Here’s what you said in comment 124, separated into two paragraphs for discussion purposes:

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and un-American, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies.

    Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as racist and un-American as Rev. Wright.

    Here are my quibbles:

    As I read the first part of your statement, you believe that conservatives think Wright is racist and un-American. Obviously, that may be true in some cases but I think it’s more accurate to say Wright has embraced a version of black separatism that tolerates or encourages racist and un-American views. In other words, Wright does not have to preach and be motivated by racism and anti-American attitudes per se to espouse views that are racist and anti-American.

    This leads to the second part of your statement. Again, I don’t think the primary issue is whether conservatives believe Obama is racist or un-American. To be sure, some may believe that but I think the issue is the disconnect between Obama’s rhetoric and his choices.

    Obama claims he stands for “Change We Can Believe In.” If that statement means anything, it means that Obama claims he can produce unity in a politically polarized country and world. That Obama could join, attend, be mentored by, and embrace a separatist and polarized church/minister suggests he isn’t the unifier he claims he is. Indeed, the teachings and beliefs of Obama’s chosen minister suggest Obama has been unwilling and ineffective at doing in his church community what he claims he can do as President: Unify polarized people.

    DRJ (8695bd)

  151. I don’t want this thread to end without linking Bernard Goldberg’s tribute to Tim Russert. Goldberg recounts specific instances that illustrate Russert’s sincere concern for bias in the media, and he concludes with this excerpt:

    “We ended our conversation that day with an exchange about the criticism he took from some on the political left for wearing a red, white and blue ribbon on his lapel when he interviewed Vice President Dick Cheney on Sept. 16, 2001. He told me a good friend of his died at the World Trade Center on 9/11, and that the friend’s family had asked if he would wear the ribbon, “and I never thought for a second about it.”

    “I want a debate about national security and who defines national security,” he said. “I understand all that. But in the end, you have to make judgments, and on that day I made a judgment that five days after the most horrific event of my lifetime and of my journalistic career, that for me to say to the country I too am part of this, I too have experienced this gut-wrenching pain and agony, and I too have enormous remorse and sympathy, with not only the people who died in the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and in the field in Pennsylvania, but all of us — we’re in this together. This isn’t covering Democrats and Republicans or the Bills versus the Redskins; this is us. The Taliban doesn’t believe in the First Amendment.”

    DRJ (8695bd)

  152. And this:

    “But what about those who say journalists shouldn’t wear red, white and blue ribbons, that by doing that somehow you’re taking the government’s side in some debate or another,” I asked him.

    “It is imperative,” he told me, “that we never suggest that there’s a moral equivalency between the United States of America and the terrorists. Period. I’ll believe that until the day I die.”

    DRJ (8695bd)

  153. As I read the first part of your statement, you believe that conservatives think Wright is racist and un-American. Obviously, that may be true in some cases but I think it’s more accurate to say Wright has embraced a version of black separatism that tolerates or encourages racist and un-American views. In other words, Wright does not have to preach and be motivated by racism and anti-American attitudes per se to espouse views that are racist and anti-American.

    Ah, semantics. Right outta the gate. He’s not a ‘racist,’ he’s just ’embraced a version of black separatism.’ What is a ‘black separatism,’ anyway? If it’s anything like white separatism, it involves being a racist. And this is a quibble? Why do I not feel convinced that if I had said something like:

    “Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright is un-American and embraces black seperatism

    you wouldn’t be here complaining that I hadn’t used the word ‘racist?’ How is the main idea of either of those paragraphs any different? We’re gonna have to get contentious over synonyms? (Paul, maybe you can see now why I don’t want to take on an issue like Iraq?) Furthermore, if we had a poll up, either on this board or some larger sample of conservatives, that asked which word or group of words describes Jeremiah Wright better, and the only choices were my ‘Racist’ and your ‘Embracing of black sepratism,’ which one do you think would win?

    This leads to the second part of your statement. Again, I don’t think the primary issue is whether conservatives believe Obama is racist or un-American. To be sure, some may believe that but I think the issue is the disconnect between Obama’s rhetoric and his choices.

    Obama claims he stands for “Change We Can Believe In.” If that statement means anything,

    Let me stop you right there. You’re about to take something as completely politically vague and unspecific as ‘Change We Can Believe In,’ and turn it into:

    it means that Obama claims he can produce unity in a politically polarized country and world.

    Five words becomes fifteen. The only word that the actual phrase has in common with the under-the-surface subtext that you offer is a preposition. That’s strange, because I’ve never heard Obama promise to ‘produce unity’ with the wave of a finger. I think he’s pretty cognizant of the difficulty in realizing such an intangible thing as ‘unity,’ look at what he just went through with Hillary Clinton. He is the first serious black President, remember? And from my viewing of the presidential campaign, I haven’t seen him trivialize the difficulty. He talks about bipartisanship all the time. He wants us to stop driving SUVs and he wants us to turn our thermostats down and he wants us to leave the private sector to become teachers. He wants us to produce unity, he’s not guaranteeing it in exchange for our votes, he’s outlining a strategy.

    But really, that’s just my interpretation of ‘Change We Can Believe In,’ and it’s just as meaningless as your interpretation of it. I know this is quite the diversion at this point, but I think it’s necessary. I mean, maybe I do need to have you make an attempt to honestly restate liberal positions, because if you’re going to do that badly on his campaign slogan, I think my chances are pretty good.

    That Obama could join, attend, be mentored by, and embrace a separatist and polarized church/minister suggests he isn’t the unifier he claims he is.

    Can I get anything meatier than this? This same, basic variation of saying the same thing is all I hear from anyone that says they have a problem with Wright. Setting aside the fact that I don’t think Wright is a separatist at all, how specifically does Obama’s attendance at his church affect his ability to lead the country? What would Americans have to worry about because he heard Rev. Wright give a speech? Who would be endangered? How would he use what you ‘suggest’ he’s learned from Rev. Wright to hurt the country?

    Indeed, the teachings and beliefs of Obama’s chosen minister suggest Obama has been unwilling and ineffective at doing in his church community what he claims he can do as President: Unify polarized people.

    It was his job as a church-goer to unify the rest of the congregation? I don’t know much about religion, but isn’t that the preacher’s job? You know he had a career he worked at all week for every Sunday that he went to that church, don’t you? Couldn’t we learn more about the skills and abilities he would take to the presidency from scrutinizing how he chose to work, as opposed to how he chose to pray?

    Levi (76ef55)

  154. Yeah, you’re not getting it, Levi.

    No soup for you!

    And no ten dollars either.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  155. Yeah, you’re not getting it, Levi.

    No soup for you!

    And no ten dollars either.

    What am I supposed to be getting?

    Her ‘quibble’ is that I called ‘racist’ what she calls ‘separatist.’ That’s a legitimate quibble to you? That’s a deal-breaker? Really?

    I don’t want your ten dollars. You’re off the hook. You want to talk yet?

    Levi (76ef55)

  156. I don’t want to be off the hook. Here’s how it works:

    You try to state her position.

    She says: very good. Almost there. But that’s not quite it.

    So you restate it again with the corrections.

    DRJ is reasonable and won’t quibble without purpose.

    But you can’t just mock the distinctions. You say: OK, I failed to state your position. Let me try again.

    Most people never get to the stage where they have the other side agreeing with their characterization of the argument. Like you, they jump straight to the mocking.

    The game doesn’t begin until you’ve stated DRJ’s position to her satisfaction. IN YOUR OWN WORDS, with no mocking.

    Then she does the same with you.

    Patterico (045e51)

  157. I don’t want to be off the hook. Here’s how it works:

    You try to state her position.

    She says: very good. Almost there. But that’s not quite it.

    So you restate it again with the corrections.

    DRJ is reasonable and won’t quibble without purpose.

    That is bullshit. She just did it. She doesn’t want to call Wright a ‘racist,’ she wants to call him a ‘separatist.’ She provides no reasoning, she doesn’t define what the differences are between separatists and racists, she just tells me I picked the wrong word.

    All I’m supposed to do is restate it with the corrections? What a pointless chore.

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright embraces black separatism and is un-American, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies.

    Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as embracing of black separatism and un-American as Rev. Wright.

    Can I have my ten dollars now?

    Were there any other quibbles at all in her response? I see that she says, ‘Here are my quibbles,’ but then she only lists one quibble, as far as I can tell. Am I missing something?

    But you can’t just mock the distinctions. You say: OK, I failed to state your position. Let me try again.

    Most people never get to the stage where they have the other side agreeing with their characterization of the argument. Like you, they jump straight to the mocking.

    The game doesn’t begin until you’ve stated DRJ’s position to her satisfaction. IN YOUR OWN WORDS, with no mocking.

    Then she does the same with you.

    What mocking? She’s the one who chose to lead off with an argument about words, I can’t point out that that is semantics? She hasn’t even had a chance to respond yet, and you’re already calling the game. Is this how you see fair debate? People that are ‘reasonable,’ according to you, are permitted unlimited use of logical fallacy, and I’m ‘mocking’ them if I point out how cheap and weak an argument that is?

    These rules seem fairly malleable now that we’re getting into it. I mean how many more corrections will I be forced to make? If I can get her to agree that ‘separatist’ means the same thing as ‘racist,’ what’s to stop her from just plucking another one of my words and saying she has a quibble about that one, too? Isn’t it inherently unfair to the re-stater to have to restate it more than once?

    Finally, when you tell me that I’m ‘mocking’ her, what do you mean, specifically? I haven’t called her any names, I’ve commented only on her arguments, have I not?

    Levi (76ef55)

  158. He doesn’t get it. It appears the concept of communication is beyond him because he can’t communicate, merely orate and debate. Fascinating.

    It’s not a function of age because my son (the 21-year-old) has learned this… we tried it after I saw you do it before. He took it to his Philosophy class and the instructor loved it. Yet Levi is simply incapable of even understanding the concept.

    I can almost picture Levi’s MMPI results. Thanks for challenging him, it’s been enlightening.

    Stashiu3 (3d02fd)

  159. He doesn’t get it. It appears the concept of communication is beyond him because he can’t communicate, merely orate and debate. Fascinating.

    It’s not a function of age because my son (the 21-year-old) has learned this… we tried it after I saw you do it before. He took it to his Philosophy class and the instructor loved it. Yet Levi is simply incapable of even understanding the concept.

    I can almost picture Levi’s MMPI results. Thanks for challenging him, it’s been enlightening.

    What is your quibble with what I said? Do you share DRJ’s quibble?

    Levi (76ef55)

  160. I’ll remind you this one time. I don’t talk to you. If I want rude, ignorant, and immature babble I’ll go read Kos. You’re not smarter than everyone in the room and life will teach you that soon enough. You believe you have the upper hand in every argument, debate, and conversation… and couldn’t be more wrong. Until you can demonstrate an ability to truly communicate, I will not answer any question from you. You’re not worth my time and everyone here should ignore you until you grow up.

    Try the exercise young man, you might learn how to interact with adults. I don’t believe you’re capable of even a good faith effort, much less success, but feel free to prove me wrong. Until then, I’ll just chuckle along with everyone else at your feeble attempts.

    Stashiu3 (3d02fd)

  161. Try the exercise young man,


    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and un-American, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies.

    Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as racist and un-American as Rev. Wright.

    What do you got on that? Where’s your quibble?

    Levi (76ef55)

  162. DRJ,

    You’ve got your work cut out for you. Reading comprehension is also an issue here. Good luck, but don’t get your hopes up.

    Stashiu3 (3d02fd)

  163. Stashiu3 #163 – Work is something that can possibly bring a result, even in small increments. What DRJ, bless her good heart, is doing is closer to fighting the wind. You may be in good shape when you decide to quit, but the wind will be unaffected.

    I’ll ask again – What are the consequences of failure here? If it’s demonstrated that there’s no there there? Business as usual?

    As we’ve both stated Stash, there are other places on the net (Kos, Huff, etc.) that I could go for this level of discourse. That’s not what I want, and I don’t think that most commenters here want it either. You, Stashiu3, are spot on regarding this problem, and given your past dealings with troublemakers of a much higher order, I will attempt to paraphrase you:

    It’s not about debate, it’s about attention.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  164. It’s not about debate, it’s about attention.

    I would agree with that Sir, adding that the need for attention springs from insecurity… hence the contemptuous facade. Granted, not all bottle-babies turn out this way. Most become well-adjusted and are not prone to projective displays of self-contempt, but in this case it may be (from a personal standpoint) a valid coping mechanism to avoid drifting into self-harm. The total lack of human empathy or social responsibility shown is astounding to functional adults, liberal or conservative. Ignore him.

    Stashiu3 (3d02fd)

  165. If it cannot even be civil with DRJ, it has shown its true colors. Not that they were really in doubt …

    JD (75f5c3)

  166. Levi – What you don’y get is that you are restating DRJ’s argument, not your own argument. That does not require that you agree with DRJ’s argument, but it does require that you understand it. You somehow seem to feel that you have to agree with it to restate it. False.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  167. One of my baseless arguments?

    Did you or did you not assert that a quote from 2007 provides context for a quote from 2001, and your ace in the hole for that assertion was string theory?

    ONE…of your problems, is that you have an almost obsessive/compulsive need to drift from the core point, in order to render what you consider a “zinger” to the person with whom you are engaged in a discussion or debate.

    You believe that you “score points” by swearing, calling names, berating, …what you don’t realize is that it cheapens your argument and weakens your stance.

    In our example here, I was trying to make an illustrative point. Perhaps it was a good analogy or maybe it didn’t work. Whatever. It was an attempt to get you to think outside of your comfort zone, so that you might approach an issue with a broader frame of reference.

    It’s a bit odd for me in a way to watch how this all is playing out, because in some ways, this started with the discussion between us and has evolved into a very good test for you. DRJ has a seemingly infinite amount of patience, I am thrilled that she is back and she has picked up the baton to try to have the type of debate or discussion with you…that I have tried on several occasions and failed miserably to complete.

    I have lost my patience, for which…believe it or not…I am not proud. It says more about me (to my way of thinking) than it does about you, when I do so.

    I see it as my failing, not yours. If you ever come to understand why intemperate words toward you disturb and haunt me a thousand times more forcefully than yours toward me do…you will have achieved an enormous milestone.

    I wish DRJ luck in accomplishing what I could not. But I wish you even more, because either way, when she is finished trying…she will still be a wonderful human being.

    By the way, I apologize for any hurtful or intemperate remarks I made to you. Best of luck in this upcoming bet.

    cfbleachers (4040c7)

  168. Levi – What you don’y get is that you are restating DRJ’s argument, not your own argument. That does not require that you agree with DRJ’s argument, but it does require that you understand it. You somehow seem to feel that you have to agree with it to restate it. False.

    What are you talking about?

    I’ve restated it a half a dozen times. Want it again?

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and un-American, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies.

    Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as racist and un-American as Rev. Wright.

    I don’t agree with that, and I am aware that in this little test, I am not supposed or expected to. Why don’t you tell me how that’s not a fair and accurate restatement of the conservative view on Rev. Wright? All DRJ has said is that she thinks I should have called him a ‘black separatist’ as opposed to a ‘racist.’ Do you think that’s fair or legitimate?

    Levi (76ef55)

  169. Levi,

    Words matter. It’s not just semantics, especially on the internet where all we have are words.

    In my view, racism is not the same as separatism. Let me give you an example in the context of gender and sexism. Someone who denigrates women or men – simply for the sake of degrading a particular gender – is a sexist. However, someone who believes there should be differences for men and women is not necessarily a sexist. For instance, a person could reasonably believe there is a role for all-male or all-female schools without being a sexist, because some children and young people learn better in gender-segregated environments.

    Similarly, believing in racial separation doesn’t make someone a racist. Are the administrators, supporters and students at a black college racists? Some may be but all aren’t, and I think it’s important to draw that distinction when we talk about Jeremiah Wright.

    Finally, please note that in my earlier comment I said I don’t think Wright is un-American anymore than I think he’s racist. I think his black separatist agenda leads him to blame whites and white America for black disadvantages and problems. As a result, Wright’s speeches are tinged with racist and anti-American rhetoric. That may be a distinction without meaning to you but what motivates people – why they say what they say – makes a difference to me.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  170. I don’t agree with that, and I am aware that in this little test, I am not supposed or expected to. Why don’t you tell me how that’s not a fair and accurate restatement of the conservative view on Rev. Wright? All DRJ has said is that she thinks I should have called him a ‘black separatist’ as opposed to a ‘racist.’ Do you think that’s fair or legitimate?

    Comment by Levi — 6/18/2008 @ 8:05 am

    If you are aware of all this then change the language as requested and stop arguing about it as requested. Debate after you agree on each others’ restated positions. That is the point.

    Why don’t you understand that people label you dumb as a post Levi if you claim to understand things and then turn around and do something that clearly indicates that you do not?

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  171. Levi,

    I’ll be more blunt. What she’s saying isthat you still haven’t accurately stated her position. So, even if you’ve tried half a doxen times, you’re going to have to try again.

    Patterico (ae1fe0)

  172. Let’s do Jeremiah Wright. It’s more simple. Though I don’t need you to restate the ‘liberal’ position on Jeremiah Wright, I don’t even know what it is. I know how I feel about it, and I’m aware that virtually nobody on the left feels the same way that I do, but I can only answer for myself. I don’t want to defend what Lanny Davis or Hillary Clinton have to say about it, I want to defend what I have to say about it.

    So like, in this thread or what?

    Comment by Levi — 6/17/2008 @ 6:44 pm

    This kind of crap from Levi is just a pure dodge. He does not have the courage to advance positions of his own and to defend them. His whole motivation is to attack the positions of others without having to advance and defend positions of his own. When he was attacking me and others for their positions on Hugo Chavez I gave him several reason why Hugo Chavez was not a good actor. He refused to answer any questions about why the left defends Hugo Chavez and ultimately admitted he didn’t know antrhing about the man. He was just reflexively attacking the right.

    DRJ, good luck with this challenge. You are going to need it!

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  173. Surely you realize, Mr. Frey, that this guy is just being a troll. He has no interest in discussion or debate. I think it is nice that you try, but he has no respect for you or any poster. It’s not about debate or discussion. Just bile.

    Rankled Lurker (1d11ac)

  174. DRJ, I don’t have time for this right now. But I can’t say that I’m looking forward to having to come back and define words with you. I describe Wright as a ‘racist,’ and you describe him as ‘a black separatist that says racist things.’ You insist that that is a very important and very meaningful distinction to make. It isn’t. I am trying to be as concise and brief as possible in my restatement of the conservative opinion on this issue, and you’re going to pick at the words I use? What about good faith? How are the main ideas of my two paragraphs any different if I restate them with your ‘quibbles?’

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright embraces black separatism and says anti-American things, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies.

    Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as embracing of black separatism and potentially agrees with some of the anti-American things that Rev. Wright says.

    Does that suit you? I don’t know what you’re setting up here by refusing to call Rev. Wright racist or un-American, as if he hasn’t been demonized by Republicans, Democrats, and the media in exactly that way.

    But anyway, I restated it again, what’s wrong with it now? I’m off to work, I’m just going to hope that you’re done with the word games.

    Levi (76ef55)

  175. Does that suit you? I don’t know what you’re setting up here by refusing to call Rev. Wright racist or un-American, as if he hasn’t been demonized by Republicans, Democrats, and the media in exactly that way.

    I find it very interesting that Levi doesn’t want to have to answer for what other liberals say about Rev. Wright (6:44 pm post yesterday), yet today he appears to want DRJ to answer for what other conservatives say about him.

    no one you know (1f5ddb)

  176. Levi,

    You insist that that is a very important and very meaningful distinction to make. It isn’t.

    It’s important to me and if you want to understand my position, you have to understand why I think it’s important.

    I can tell you are impatient and frustrated with this discussion. If it’s any consolation, I feel the same way.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  177. DRJ – Are you going to attempt to state the liberal position on Rev. Wright and get Levi to own it?

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  178. Is everyone done wrestling with the pig (Levi) yet?

    PCD (5c49b0)

  179. #168, so well said, cfbleachers.

    DRJ, in order to ease your frustration it may prudent to simply accept that not everyone is as equally compelled as you to understand another’s point of view. And some are actually unable to.

    Dana (b4a26c)

  180. PCD #179 – I’ve been done for a while. Done with threads taken completely off topic and/or reduced to verbal feces fights. I need a new mouse wheel from having to scroll past the crap. Patterico.com is a great site, and the topics, posters and generally the commenters are all interesting and a cut above. With one exception. There is no change, no progress. And to that end I keep asking, why?

    I keep seeking an answer to what would seem a simple question: What happens if the pig is identified as a pig? A new wrestling match? Two out of three?

    I would only point to JD’s #166 pointing out the pigs’ inability to be civil to DRJ. DRJ! A being with patience and people skills wedged somewhere between Jesus and Buddha. That alone should dispell any rumor of attempted discourse.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  181. Apogee, 181, I like to argue as much as most reasonable people, but the pig is a cancer here. I don’t know the answer. Maybe Pat will have to start locking threads the pig is ruining to stop this mess.

    PCD (5c49b0)

  182. daleyrocks,

    I would write the liberal position but I’m not going to since Levi sees no value in having a contrary position to argue from. That means the discussion will solely focus on the conservative position.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  183. Everyone,

    Give this discussion just a little more time. I think Levi has made a sincere effort discuss this with me so far, and I hope he will see a benefit in continuing the effort.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  184. On second thought … I could use some help. It’s certainly possible that I’m on the wrong track and/or wrong about the distinctions I’ve tried to explain to Levi. So if you have an opinion on Jeremiah Wright that you want to add, feel free to chime in.

    In addition, if you understand my point (whether or not you agree with it), feel free to help me explain it to Levi. Sometimes it helps us understand when we say/hear things in a different way … which is another benefit of the internet.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  185. God bless you DRJ, but you are not the reason for the lack of understanding.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  186. I think his black separatist agenda leads him to blame whites and white America for black disadvantages and problems.

    DRJ, if I may be forgiven for jumping in: I think it is more likely that the fact that he blames whites and white America for black disadvantages and problems has caused him to develop black seperatist beliefs. That is, I think you’re confusing cause and effect here.

    Maybe it doesn’t matter, but … if the blame came first and the seperatism arose as an outgrowth of the blame, then I find his views more forgivable: I imagine that for a black man of his age to put aside anger at the way white society of his childhood treated black people is *difficult*. That doesn’t mean that seperatism is a good solution; it means that the man is mired in the past, and should be pitied for it.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  187. DRJ,
    You’re doing great, wonderfully in fact. The fact that you think you might be the cause of the misunderstanding, and Levi can’t bring himself to even consider the same thing, is in fact the problem, as is clear (I think) to everyone on this thread.

    It’s certainly possible that I’m on the wrong track and/or wrong about the distinctions I’ve tried to explain to Levi. So if you have an opinion on Jeremiah Wright that you want to add, feel free to chime in.

    The whole point of the exercise was to see if he could restate your position, whether or not it agrees with distinctions others would make (I think it does BTW but that wasn’t the point of this). So far he’s unable to do it, and unable to understand why he hasn’t done it right yet.

    Can’t help finding it amusing that he made very clear last night that he didn’t hold the position most liberals do, and and only wanted to defend his own, period. Yet he can’t stop trying to lump your position in with what he thinks is “the conservative” position.

    I don’t know what you’re setting up here by refusing to call Rev. Wright racist or un-American, as if he hasn’t been demonized by Republicans, Democrats, and the media in exactly that way.

    It’s he who’s wanting to “set up” something by refusing to accept your saying anything but what he’s already decided your position should be. Regrettable, but (it seems) typical of his “discussion” skills.

    no one you know (1f5ddb)

  188. The difference between us and you (or at least between me and you; I won’t presume to speak for everyone) is that we’re (or I’m) not willing to overlook the complicity of the Democratic party, whose obsequious cowering has cost this country so much.

    Leviticus, I missed this earlier, so pleasse allow me to endorse it now.

    The Democratic party leadership has very little to be proud about in the period of, say, 1994-2005. The leadership has gotten somewhat better of late, but still displays a marked, and frustrating, lack of political courage.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  189. That you include the Clinton years in that increases my respect for you…

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  190. Aphrael exhibits a lot of the symptoms of what’s wrong with most Democrats, this willingness to work with Republicans chief among them, even as Republicans continue to shit in our coffee at every turn

    I want to live in a country where people from different walks of life, with different visions of the ideal world, with different hopes and aspirations, respect and tolerate one another, and can come together to achieve shared goals. That is *my* ideal world.

    Besides which, I think that it will be easier to achieve my goals if I don’t make enemies along the way, and if I work with allies-of-the-moment whenever I find them.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  191. Scott: I think the Clinton administration was, by and large, an administration which governed well. (Not perfectly, but perfection is unobtainable).

    But it was never politically courageous; the fiasco which led to DADT clearly demonstrated that (as did countless other things about the early Clinton administration). Things got worse after the Gingrich revolution; President Clinton stood up to the Congress to some degree … but the party leadership in Congress operated out of fear: fear that to stand on principle, and fight for its beliefs, would lead to the loss of more Congressional seats and a longer tenure in the minority. And when you combine that with the fact that President Clinton did little to nothing to ensure the broader success of the party, the period was a *disaster* for Democrats, and for liberalism.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  192. And when you combine that with the fact that President Clinton did little to nothing to ensure the broader success of the party, the period was a *disaster* for Democrats, and for liberalism.

    Which I thank him for, frankly… :)

    fear that to stand on principle, and fight for its beliefs, would lead to the loss of more Congressional seats and a longer tenure in the minority.

    Ironicly, this is what cause Republicans to lose the majority, and will cause further loss of seats…

    Amazing what failing to act according to your beliefs, and instead acting in “safe mode” will cost you…

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  193. Aphrael @ 187:

    I’m glad you made that point because it’s a good example of what I was afraid might be happening here – with others and maybe with Levi. There is a chicken-and-egg aspect to this debate, and that was part of my point that you are helping me clarify.

    I agree with your statement. Specifically, I think it would be hard for Jeremiah Wright to grow up in a country where whites have advantages and not resent that. I also agree that background might have led him to black separatism. However, my point was that some black separatists are concerned with more than the notion of black disadvantages and challenges. Some, like Louis Farrakhan, use their beliefs to scapegoat people and institutions with racist or anti-American rhetoric that is antithetical to what Barack Obama claims he stands for.

    In my opinion, Jeremiah Wright’s rhetoric is extremist. The reason I think it’s important to understand the origins of his rhetoric is to understand how he could nobly serve his country as a military nurse and then damn his country 30 years later; how he could preach a message of Christ’s love for all people while condemning his fellow Americans as getting what they deserve on 9/11. I understand that better when I see it through the prism of a disadvantaged black man who embraced a black separatist ideology that encouraged him to bitterly blame whites and America.

    Of course, it’s also possible Wright is not a true believer in extreme black separatist ideology. Maybe Wright doesn’t believe what he says and he’s an opportunist who uses black separatism to gain political clout in his community. In that case, his rhetoric is designed to inflame people for attention and funding, a black version of a corrupt evangelist. Either way, though, I agree his beliefs are probably originally rooted in his status as a black man in 1950’s/1960’s America.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  194. The position has to be stated in a way that DRJ would accept the statement as accurate enough that she would adopt it as her own. Because that will be the basis of the future discussion.

    No arguments against the position can be offered in the comment that states the other side’s position. Once Levi does it, we’ll have a linkable comment, written by Levi, adopted by DRJ, that serves as the basis for argument.

    Then we’ll reverse the process.

    Once we have each side’s position stated, and adopted by the other side, I’ll start a new thread, which quotes and links the two opposing statements, and allows DRJ and Levi to argue it out BASED ON THOSE STATEMENTS.

    Y’all can stand on the sidelines and throw rotten fruit.

    For the double or nothing, all comments must relate back to the statement of position accepted by the other party.

    If we get to that point.

    Patterico (cff355)

  195. Patterico #195 – If we get to that point.

    Again, I’ll ask the question: And if we don’t?

    If the experiment ends in failure, digression or attack, will something be decided in this?
    Patterico, this is your site, and your rules. But if there cannot be failure, then victory is meaningless.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  196. IMO Levi and Rev. Wright are cut from much the same cloth. They spew illogical venom that makes little sense. I don’t know the genesis of what makes Levi the insufferable prig he is. Rev. Wright grew up in a middle class background not lacking for material wealth. He has much more money now and a forum that lets him show off his ass to the media in the vein of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton. Even they don’t go so far as to say our government invented HIV to put down the black man. Show me where Wright suffered at the hands of the white man. His service as marine does not exempt him from criticism. Since Obama took the opportunity to throw Wright under the bus, he must have seen the political ramifications of tying his wagon to that racemongering jackass.

    As for Levi I would surmise he loves the attention garnered here. Anyone who knows what is in a book just by reading the title is a horse’s ass by defintion. I don’t see Levi engaging anyone on the facts. Sad thing is I know plenty of people who base their opinions on their gut feelings and the nonsense perpetuated daily by the media. I’ve seen no one explain just how Bush wipes his ass with the constitution, even if Levi and morons like Howard Dean and other liberal functionaries want to believe it.

    madmax333 (62b0ed)

  197. Apogee,

    I have a suggestion when this ends. Give it time, for now.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  198. I have my orders from Patterico #195 so, even if Levi isn’t interested, here’s my attempt at the liberal position on Jeremiah Wright:

    As a black man growing up in the Civil Rights era, Jeremiah Wright endured racial discrimination that understandably caused him to focus on black disadvantages and challenges. If his rhetoric is inflammatory, it’s only because he grew up in a time when blacks weren’t given the opportunities they have today and, as a result, he is understandably resentful and suspicious.

    In addition, Wright’s statements don’t mean Barack Obama and the other members of Wright’s church condone racist or anti-American statements, and Obama is not responsible for statements he claims he never heard.

    Finally, Wright is a minister whose opinions are no more extreme than those of conservative evangelists who claim American policies provoked God to punish America, but Republican candidates are not condemned for associating with those evangelists.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  199. Levi DID say he had to go to work. Could be why no responses from him…

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  200. Scott,

    I know Levi is at work but I have some things to do later so I’m commenting now as much as I can. Hopefully it will help keep things moving forward when Levi has time to come back.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  201. My statement that Levi isn’t interested only relates to the fact that Levi said he didn’t want me to post a statement on the liberal position. I did it anyway because of Patterico’s 195.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  202. For those who wonder about the technique, I’ll point to Wikipedia’s Writing for the Enemy.

    htom (412a17)

  203. Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright embraces black separatism and says anti-American things, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies.

    Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as embracing of black separatism and potentially agrees with some of the anti-American things that Rev. Wright says.

    Before I get to yours, just wanted you to weigh in on my ‘corrected’ restatement. Is that enough? Does that satisfy your complaints? Is it quibble-free now? This has been up all day now, why no response yet?

    Levi (76ef55)

  204. As a black man growing up in the Civil Rights era, Jeremiah Wright endured racial discrimination that understandably caused him to focus on black disadvantages and challenges. If his rhetoric is inflammatory, it’s only because he grew up in a time when blacks weren’t given the opportunities they have today and, as a result, he is understandably resentful and suspicious.

    This whole paragraph is unnecessary. It’s not the liberal position that since Wright lived through segregation, he’s allowed to be a little crazy. Racism wasn’t eradicated during the Civil Rights era. Your depiction of Wright here makes it sound like a black man hasn’t had anything to legitimately complain about since 1970.

    In addition, Wright’s statements don’t mean Barack Obama and the other members of Wright’s church condone racist or anti-American statements, and Obama is not responsible for statements he claims he never heard.

    Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. Other than that, this statement is fairly accurate, although what you messed up was the most important part.

    Finally, Wright is a minister whose opinions are no more extreme than those of conservative evangelists who claim American policies provoked God to punish America, but Republican candidates are not condemned for associating with those evangelists.

    It’s not right to put Wright on equal footing with conservative evangelicals. They’re way more extreme than he is, way more numerous, vocal and influential.

    Also, you neglected to mention anything about how the only reason anybody knows anything about Rev. Wright is because Republicans are staring down the barrel of a hopeless election and will say and do anything to get elected, including exploiting whatever racism is left in this country. This is the most important part of the liberal ‘position’ on Rev. Wright.

    That should keep you busy.

    Levi (76ef55)

  205. I think DRJ already said that you need to articulate why she sees a difference between racism and separatism.

    But I’ll let her address it with you.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  206. Levi,

    I’m sorry I didn’t respond directly to your revised version but I think we cross-posted around comments #170-175. Here are my 2 remaining concerns:

    1. I think conservatives believe Jeremiah Wright embraces an extremist version of black separatism that cause him to make racist and anti-American statements. Excerpts from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of its core philosophies, support this belief.

    2. I think conservatives believe that because Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, his were kids baptized there, and Wright was Obama’s spiritual mentor, it raises questions about Barack Obama’s willingness to confront and deal with topics like black separatism, racism, and any other polarizing issue.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  207. Levi,

    Thank you for your comments. Here is my revised statement of the liberal position on Jeremiah Wright:

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. The only reason conservatives care about Wright is because they are faced with a hopeless Presidential election and will say and do anything to get elected, including exploiting whatever racism is left in this country.

    Further, Wright’s opinions do not compare to the opinions espoused by conservative evangelists who claim American policies provoked God to punish America. Conservative politicians are not condemned for associating with those conservative evangelists even though they are far more extreme, numerous, vocal and influential.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  208. Levi,

    There are some typos in #2 of my 207. It should read as follows:

    2. I think conservatives believe that because Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, his kids were baptized there, and Wright was Obama’s spiritual mentor, it raises questions about Barack Obama’s willingness to confront and deal with topics like black separatism, racism, and other polarizing issues.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  209. Also, Levi – it’s James Cone, not David Cone.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  210. Okay, yeah, whatever. Can we get on with this then?

    Levi (76ef55)

  211. Seriously, how many strikes does Tint Dancer get, anyways?

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  212. Scott – I think you meant Tiny Dancer. Tint Dancer works in an auto shop in TJ.

    Out of my immense respect for DRJ who has asked that we let this play out (#198), I will refrain from “throwing the rotten fruit” until she gives her assessment.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  213. Levi #211,

    “Okay, yeah, whatever. Can we get on with this then?”

    … is not an encouraging response that you understand my position, and it implies your interest isn’t in seeing two sides of this subject. You just want to argue. It also indicates you accept Patterico’s ‘double or nothing’ challenge that we debate the merits of the topic “without insults for ten substantive, meaningful comments each.”

    I participated in the first challenge for free. Now that I know you accept the second challenge, and given your attitude that my concerns are only worth “okay, yeah, whatever” to you, I will only participate in the second challenge if both you and Patterico agree to give me the power – in my sole discretion – to ban you from Patterico’s website for 10 days following the conclusion of the debate.

    Of course, I may chose not to exercise the power to ban you and you will not be banned, which is likely if I decide your participation in our debate is in good faith. Then again, I may exercise the power just because I feel like it.

    I understand that you or Patterico may not agree to my terms so, at this point, you each must decide whether you want to accept my challenge or whether you want to modify the challenge terms so you debate with him or someone of his choice instead of me. I await your decisions.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  214. Damn, it’s good to have you back, DRJ!

    EHeavenlyGads (f29174)

  215. Then again, I may exercise the power just because I feel like it.

    /swoon

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  216. DRJ, I grant you this reasonable request. With the carrot, there shall also be a stick.

    Patterico (cb50cf)

  217. Indeed, you may do whatever you like with Levi’s account, whenever you like.

    Patterico (8e9558)

  218. … is not an encouraging response that you understand my position, and it implies your interest isn’t in seeing two sides of this subject. You just want to argue. It also indicates you accept Patterico’s ‘double or nothing’ challenge that we debate the merits of the topic “without insults for ten substantive, meaningful comments each.”

    I participated in the first challenge for free. Now that I know you accept the second challenge, and given your attitude that my concerns are only worth “okay, yeah, whatever” to you, I will only participate in the second challenge if both you and Patterico agree to give me the power – in my sole discretion – to ban you from Patterico’s website for 10 days following the conclusion of the debate.

    Of course, I may chose not to exercise the power to ban you and you will not be banned, which is likely if I decide your participation in our debate is in good faith. Then again, I may exercise the power just because I feel like it.

    I understand that you or Patterico may not agree to my terms so, at this point, you each must decide whether you want to accept my challenge or whether you want to modify the challenge terms so you debate with him or someone of his choice instead of me. I await your decisions.

    I am already so tired of this, just assume I automatically agree to whatever you want. I am just not even interested in incorporating your feedback into my restatement or whatever, I still believe I did it right the first time and that you were complaining over nothing. Why don’t you just write your own position, and I can write mine? Then we can debate from there? If we don’t understand each other positions, it will come out in the course of the argument, will it not?

    I mean this is like grading homework. Are you having fun doing this? I am totally bored, I’m quickly becoming disinterested, all of this is getting way too over-hyped. Why can’t we just get the ball rolling? I feel like I’ve given this a good enough try, haven’t I? You’ve got every advantage, your legions of fans are out in force, there’s no way that I’m going to be allowed to win this thing, let’s just get it over with, huh?

    Levi (76ef55)

  219. Indeed, you may do whatever you like with Levi’s account, whenever you like.

    Can I get a little reward if I win?

    Just as an idea, maybe you could change your logo up there to include the phrase:

    ‘Internet Home of Levi: Lord and Master of the Conservative Blogosphere’

    Levi (76ef55)

  220. I am just not even interested in incorporating your feedback into my restatement or whatever

    Can I get a little reward if I win?

    I think that ship already sailed, bucko…

    DRJ, remember… Patterico said “anything”…

    My birthday is in a month… Feel free to give my gift early… :)

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  221. Levi,

    We aren’t going to get anywhere if you refuse to even think about anything but your own goals and opinions. The point of this exercise isn’t to win the debate – very few people will change their opinions based on what you and I say. The point is to expand minds with well-thought out questions and fleshed out answers.

    You have the added incentive that you can win $20 from Patterico if you debate in a meaningful and respectful manner, and that’s totally in your control. The downside is that afterwards I may ban you arbitrarily, unless my principles and character prevent me from doing something unfair just because it might benefit me. Right now I’m a conservative who thinks it’s important to adhere to principles and keep promises but if you do a good job in this debate, you may convince me that change is good. I may decide banning you is a good change.

    So … do we start here or in a new thread, Patterico?

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  222. #221:

    ‘Internet Home of Levi: Lord and Master of the Conservative Blogosphere’

    Mr. Sunny: Get over yourself.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  223. Believe me, I can think of dozens of ways to alter that ‘title,’ not all of them suited for family consumption.

    Since Patterico says we can throw rotten fruit, I’ll just remind everyone that the commenter that wishes for the title of ‘Internet Home of Levi: Lord and Master of the Conservative Blogosphere’ once wrote:

    “You don’t have to read something to know its contents. I’ve gotten A’s on papers I’ve written and tests I’ve taken about books I’ve never read.”

    Paul (19c9b7)

  224. Why don’t you just write your own position, and I can write mine? Then we can debate from there? If we don’t understand each other positions, it will come out in the course of the argument, will it not?

    We’ve already tried that…ad nauseum. Which is why so many regulars here think you are a classless ass. This includes some of the liberals here. That’s why Patterico issued his challenge.

    I feel like I’ve given this a good enough try, haven’t I? You’ve got every advantage, your legions of fans are out in force, there’s no way that I’m going to be allowed to win this thing, let’s just get it over with, huh?

    Oh, stop whining. You make it sound as though its difficult to argue with actual facts instead of ad hominems and undocumented assertions.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  225. Scott Jacobs in #216:

    /swoon

    Scott, you have no shame. :)

    Paul (19c9b7)

  226. Scott, you have no shame.

    I was unaware that this failing was in dispute… 😉

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  227. I feel like I’ve given this a good enough try, haven’t I? You’ve got every advantage, your legions of fans are out in force, there’s no way that I’m going to be allowed to win this thing, let’s just get it over with, huh?

    Spoken like a true Master of the Universe.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  228. I am already so tired of this, just assume I automatically agree to whatever you want. I am just not even interested in incorporating your feedback into my restatement or whatever, I still believe I did it right the first time and that you were complaining over nothing. Why don’t you just write your own position, and I can write mine? Then we can debate from there? If we don’t understand each other positions, it will come out in the course of the argument, will it not?

    I mean this is like grading homework. Are you having fun doing this? I am totally bored, I’m quickly becoming disinterested, all of this is getting way too over-hyped. Why can’t we just get the ball rolling? I feel like I’ve given this a good enough try, haven’t I? You’ve got every advantage, your legions of fans are out in force, there’s no way that I’m going to be allowed to win this thing, let’s just get it over with, huh?

    Levi,

    You’re discovering a hard truth: making arguments against the other guy’s position is easy, but truly understanding the other guy’s position is hard.

    I still believe I did it right the first time and that you were complaining over nothing.

    By definition, you couldn’t have done it right, Levi. Because DRJ told you that you didn’t — and she is the one who knows what her position is.

    You’re treating this step like an annoyance before you get to the main event, where you attack the other argument. But if you really understood this process, you would understand that this *is* the main event.

    Understanding the other person’s position eliminates 90+% of Internet arguments — the kind where people constantly say: “that’s a strawman” “that’s not what I said” “you’re misrepresenting my position” and all the other phrases that constitute the vast majority of interaction on the Web.

    I got a picture of Alexander Hamilton just waiting to reside in your pocket, if you go the double or nothing route.

    But so far, you haven’t even earned the 10 bucks. You haven’t even really tried.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  229. There’s no trick to winning.

    All you have to do is fairly state the position of the fairest and most patient person I have ever met on the Internet.

    Then criticize her arguments without distorting them or using invective.

    Most people here would find that child’s play.

    I could do it and it would be the easiest 20 bucks I ever made.

    Maybe we should do that as an example. DRJ, do we disagree on anything?

    Patterico (cb443b)

  230. No.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  231. Except that murder/traffic thing and Ramos-Compean, but that’s too involved and I’m not sure what I really think on that. Take your pick on these:

    Abortion? I’m not sure of my position on that either, but I think I’m close to your position on that.

    Gay marriage? I don’t want the state to be in charge of marriage. I want churches to handle marriage and, if necessary, the state can regulate civil unions.

    Drug laws? I’m in favor of them.

    Anything jump out at you?

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  232. Oh. Well, that makes it tougher, then.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  233. Patterico, DRJ…

    The Middle Ages were neither Middle, nor Ages…

    Discuss…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  234. I want to drill in ANWR and offshore, and build more nuclear plants and refineries. Does that get your California blood boiling?

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  235. FWIW, I think Levi has hit a wall on framing the issues. He doesn’t see the value of understanding my point of view.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  236. We’ve already tried that…ad nauseum. Which is why so many regulars here think you are a classless ass. This includes some of the liberals here. That’s why Patterico issued his challenge.

    And I hit that shit outta the park. Of course no one around here is going to admit to that. DRJ couldn’t, she invented some gripe about my word choice, and now we’re at an impasse. I asked Patterico for a ruling on whether or not her quibble was legitimate, and all I was told was that ‘DRJ is reasonable.’ I asked several specific commenters if they though the quibble was legitimate, they said nothing. I think that if we’re going to do this, it’s a good idea to have someone calling strikes and fouls, but no one will weigh in unless it’s to call me an idiot or to shower DRJ with adoration.

    At this point, as loathe as I am to engage people that trot out semantic arguments, I’m probably more interested in debating with DRJ about what constitutes a racist and what constitutes someone who embraces black separatism and says racist things in public, and how according to her, there’s a vast divide between those two types of people. I mean can you even fathom how many quotes from conservatives on this board that I would be able to pull up that describe Rev. Wright as a racist?

    Oh, stop whining. You make it sound as though its difficult to argue with actual facts instead of ad hominems and undocumented assertions.

    I’ll put it to you then, Paul. Would you describe Rev. Wright as a racist or someone that embraces black separatism and says racist things?

    Levi (76ef55)

  237. And I hit that shit outta the park. Of course no one around here is going to admit to that. DRJ couldn’t, she invented some gripe about my word choice, and now we’re at an impasse.

    I swear to god Patrick, if that isn’t his strike three…

    Would you describe Rev. Wright as a racist or someone that embraces black separatism and says racist things?

    For my part, I would discribe him as the latter, since the latter has been proven by his words, the former can not be known unless he tells us he’s a racist or we read his mind.

    But such fine distinctions are demonstrably beyond your ken…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  238. Patterico, it isn’t hard for any reasonable person able to discuss anything in good faith.

    It is impossible for Levi amusingly enough to even understand your charge to him however. His 6:14pm shows that perfectly.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  239. Finally, please note that in my earlier comment I said I don’t think Wright is un-American anymore than I think he’s racist. I think his black separatist agenda leads him to blame whites and white America for black disadvantages and problems. As a result, Wright’s speeches are tinged with racist and anti-American rhetoric. That may be a distinction without meaning to you but what motivates people – why they say what they say – makes a difference to me.

    If I were to dig up a quote where DRJ states unequivocally ‘I think Wright is un-American,’ would that give me anything in the way of some credibility with you guys? Would that convince any of you that I just might be right about her ‘quibbles’ being nothing more than pointless semantic deviations?

    Because I found one.

    Who wants the link to it?

    Levi (76ef55)

  240. Who wants to bet that it says ‘said unamerican-things’, and not ‘Wright is unamerican’?

    twenty bucks? Anyone?

    Anyone?

    No?

    Damn.

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  241. Of course no one around here is going to admit to that. DRJ couldn’t, she invented some gripe about my word choice, and now we’re at an impasse. I asked Patterico for a ruling on whether or not her quibble was legitimate, and all I was told was that ‘DRJ is reasonable.’

    Here’s my ruling: when you engage in this process, any quibble not offered in bad faith is by definition legitimate, and puts the burden on the other party to understand what the problem is.

    As for saying that DRJ “invented” a gripe, you’re on thin ice, son. You keep trying my patience by suggesting that my most honest, reasonable, and patient commenter is being dishonest — when you’re the one who is so goddamned thick that you’re apparently the one person on this board who can’t understand the point of this exercise — and I’ll pull the plug on your account myself. DRJ, I already said, can pull it any time she likes.

    Now: modify your characterization of DRJ’s argument to satisfy DRJ. If there’s a distinction that you don’t see as a distinction, say POLITELY that you’re sorry, but you don’t understand it, and could she explain it better?

    Patterico (cb443b)

  242. Tell you what, Levi.

    You can rethink providing that quote.

    Or, you can provide it, in a comment.

    If you provide it and it says what you claim, we’ll let DRJ react to that.

    If you provide it and it doesn’t say what you claim, you are banned.

    I am the sole judge of whether it says what you claim, and there are no appeals.

    Think carefully.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  243. Levi,

    If I were to dig up a quote where DRJ states unequivocally ‘I think Wright is un-American,’ would that give me anything in the way of some credibility with you guys? Would that convince any of you that I just might be right about her ‘quibbles’ being nothing more than pointless semantic deviations?

    That’s a good point. If I said that, I should be challenged on it, so please link it and let’s talk about it.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  244. Who wants to bet that it says ’said unamerican-things’, and not ‘Wright is unamerican’?

    twenty bucks? Anyone?

    Anyone?

    No?

    Damn.

    I’ll take that bet.

    I’ll bet you $100.00.

    Shake on it?

    Levi (76ef55)

  245. I’d hink about Patterico’s wager first, Tiny Dancer…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  246. Tell you what, Levi.

    You can rethink providing that quote.

    Or, you can provide it, in a comment.

    If you provide it and it says what you claim, we’ll let DRJ react to that.

    If you provide it and it doesn’t say what you claim, you are banned.

    I am the sole judge of whether it says what you claim, and there are no appeals.

    Think carefully.

    http://patterico.com/2008/04/24/excerpts-from-bill-moyers-interview-of-jeremiah-wright/

    Should I direct you guys to it or shall I let you find it on your own?

    Booyah.

    Levi (76ef55)

  247. Good enough. I judge that it says what you claim.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  248. However.

    I recommend that you watch your tone very, very carefully — over the next few comments especially.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  249. For example, if you suggest, on the basis of that one inconsistency, that DRJ is dishonest in any way, then you will go into moderation for an unspecified period. I’ll approve the comments I want to approve and I’ll get to them when I get to them. And I work all day, so that’s a lot of hours when I won’t be getting to them.

    So, again, watch the tone.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  250. And I hit that shit outta the park.

    Oh, really?

    but no one will weigh in unless it’s to call me an idiot or to shower DRJ with adoration.

    Dude, you’re the one who wants ‘Internet Home of Levi: Lord and Master of the Conservative Blogosphere’ plastered on the masthead. Considering the idiotic comments you’ve posted here, you’re lucky we didn’t laugh you off the site.

    As for DRJ, Scott’s the only one who did. Scott been flirting with DRJ long before you showed up.

    At this point, as loathe as I am to engage people that trot out semantic arguments

    Says the one who once used a book title of a book he never read to support an argument.

    I mean can you even fathom how many quotes from conservatives on this board that I would be able to pull up that describe Rev. Wright as a racist?

    That’s a serious charge, buddy boy. Care to back it up?

    I’ll put it to you then, Paul. Would you describe Rev. Wright as a racist or someone that embraces black separatism and says racist things?

    Dude, I’m not the one being challenged here, because Patterico and the regulars on both sides know I can–and do–understand the other side’s position.

    To answer your question, its the latter.

    I suggest you drop asking me about Wright though–I’ve already eviscerated your arguments to rationalize Wright’s statements by bringing up Trent Lott.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  251. Levi,

    Here’s what I said at the link:

    I don’t know if Trinity Church is a cult but I think Wright is un-American and filled with hate speech. And if I said the things Wright said only I directed them at black people and their institutions, Wright would have every right to think I am anti-black and hate-filled, too.

    I said those words and I meant them. My knowledge about why Wright made those statements has increased over the past 2 months. As a result, I think understanding Wright’s black separatist agenda is an important aspect of understanding Jeremiah Wright and Barack Obama.

    In our discussion, I’ve tried to distinguish between what I know and what I think. I’ve learned from news reports, the Trinity Church website and Wright’s subsequent statements that he endorses a black separatist agenda. As I’ve repeatedly said, I think that causes him to make racist and un-American statements. I never said Wright didn’t make un-American and racist comments and, in fact, that he has made those statements will be an important part of our discussion.

    I think it is also important to try to frame the issues objectively and that’s what I tried to do with you. Therefore, in addition to discussing the fact that Jeremiah Wright makes un-American and racist comments, I also think it’s important to understand what causes him to make those statements. That’s why I focused on his black separatist beliefs.

    However, I won’t object if you think it’s important that my statement include – in addition to being a black separatist – that I think Wright is un-American and filled with hate speech.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  252. For example, if you suggest, on the basis of that one inconsistency, that DRJ is dishonest in any way, then you will go into moderation for an unspecified period. I’ll approve the comments I want to approve and I’ll get to them when I get to them. And I work all day, so that’s a lot of hours when I won’t be getting to them.

    I don’t see why I have to be put on notice for justifying my complaint. Doesn’t this in some degree legitimize my earlier concerns about semantics? Believe me, I want to be able to do this debate, I really want to, but it’s hard to trust that I’m getting a fair shake. I’ve agreed to attempt all your guys’ tests and I’ve given it a pretty good shot in my opinion, but I don’t want to be treated unfairly. As much as you guys talk about me putting forth an effort in good faith, I don’t see really see that being reciprocated.

    I am trying here, although you guys are making it harder and harder for me to even want to do so anymore.

    Levi (76ef55)

  253. Levi,

    You’re doing fine. Keep going.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  254. I don’t see why I have to be put on notice for justifying my complaint.

    Because you’re not only insulting the best commenter on this blog (and the only one who wouldn’t Ban you the INSTANT Patterico gave them that power), but you’re also a proven asshole…

    Who has stated he found this “annoying”. She’s been acting in good faith, and franly we’d be really shocked to see you even attempt it…

    As for your being treated “unfairly”, I think you are being treated in exactly the manner which you have earned…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  255. and the only one who wouldn’t Ban you the INSTANT Patterico gave them that power

    Actually Scott, I wouldn’t ban him either…at least not right away.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  256. Nor, to be fair, would I. Levi is not a troll or a drive by flooder; that keeps him beyond my ban threshold.

    aphrael (ca066f)

  257. For me, Levi has gives some insight to how and why liberals thinks the way they do, in spite of him calling me dumb. I agree with him on next-to-nothing but there is a consistency (for lack of better a better word…) to the way he approaches an issue (before going off the handle)…

    You know, I should address this directly to you, Levi. I don’t like talking about other commenters if they’re not present.

    Dana (87e5fa)

  258. ack…should read “For me, Levi has given some…”

    Dana (87e5fa)

  259. However, I won’t object if you think it’s important that my statement include – in addition to being a black separatist – that I think Wright is un-American and filled with hate speech

    What’s important to me right now is some sort of demonstration that you understand where I’m coming from with regards to my allegation of semantics.

    Let’s talk about black separatism. Earlier, you mentioned there are other forms of separatism, and chose girls’ and boys’ only schools as an example. We’ll call this ‘gender separatism.’ It isn’t uncouth to be a gender separatist in our society, at least when it comes to schools, because there’s lots of good reasons for it. Educators become gender separatists because they believe it helps them teach and it helps students learn. That’s their reasoning for keeping the genders apart, for keeping them separate.

    Racial separatists are another matter. They want to keep people of different races away from each other. Different sort of racial separatists might want to enforce racial separatism for different reasons. A white separatist might want to preserve the purity of the white race, a black separatist might be mistrustful of a race that formerly owned them. Fundamentally though, they all embrace separatism because they are racists. They either don’t want to tolerate any of a particular race, or they believe they themselves are superior, or that the other race is inferior, or they simply hate all its members. Take your pick, those are dictionary.com’s definitions for ‘racism.’

    The girls’ only school’s administrators have their reasons for being gender separatists; they’re good educators. As do people that would separate people based on race; they’re racists. All racists may not be separatists, but all separatists are most definitely racists.

    Levi (76ef55)

  260. Should have addressed this earlier:

    it’s hard to trust that I’m getting a fair shake

    Dude, realize how much slack Patterico and DRJ are cutting you. Most blogs I visit would have banned you long before this point for the behavior you have shown here.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  261. Levi,

    That’s a good point, and I think you are right that most people who advocate separation based on race are racists.

    But if that’s always true, how do you explain all-black colleges? Are the students, administrators, faculty and supporters of all-black colleges racists?

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  262. but all separatists are most definitely racists.

    Do you include in this, for example, first-generation Indian immigrants who, while working with non-Indians, socialize exclusively with Indians?

    aphrael (ca066f)

  263. Levi,

    Just a note: Single sex education is not as widely approved as you suggest. In fact, for 30 years, federal law banned it in public schools until President Bush changed the rule in 2006.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  264. I really think Levi got that backwards, since the girl’s school seps are almost certainly not racists…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  265. Are the students, administrators, faculty and supporters of all-black colleges racists?”

    Sorry DRJ, but to me, questions such as this make my stomach turn.

    Don’t forget that it hasn’t been tat long ago that blacks couldn’t even eat with white people.

    The black colleges were originally started since black people weren’t allowed in white ones, isn’t that right? If so, that explains that. They just continued. I doubt there is a formal policy enforced to keep any other race out of them either.

    Psyberian (9f6817)

  266. Psyberian,

    I don’t think they are racists. My point was there are reasons other than racism for someone to want a single-race school.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  267. I was responding to Levi’s #260.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  268. There shouldn’t be a reason for single-race schools in this day and time DRJ. So I don’t see the point. What would be a reason then?

    Psyberian (9f6817)

  269. If so, that explains that.

    Yes, but a college can’t be “all white”, excluding blacks, but a college CAN be “all black”, and exclude all whites…

    How is that not racist to some degree?

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  270. darn you people for posting faster than I cn…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  271. He certainly had it backwards. All racists may not be separatists, but all separatists are most definitely racists
    I think he meant “all separatists may not be racists, but all racists are most definitely separatists.” Or something like that.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  272. I’ve had enough of this already and it’s time for this old guy to turn in.

    Levi, at this point they’re just toying with you. Don’t let them.

    Psyberian (9f6817)

  273. Yeah, cause Levi’s the reasonable one…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  274. Psyberian,

    I’d like all institutions to be integrated but I’m not interested in regulating private institutions so we can eradicate black colleges. I’d rather let the market handle that issue.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  275. I’m not vouching for this article but here’s one student’s view on why we still need black colleges.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  276. OK, One more for Scotty-boy. Have you tried to get into a black college lately Scott? Do you know any non-black who has? Do you know anyone who would want to? I could understand your carping if Harvard or the best schools were only black. But I don’t believe that any black college would refuse anyone based solely on race in the first place.

    Psyberian (9f6817)

  277. #19
    It’s too bad he died, but I am already forcing myself to keep down the puke from all of the people running around lamenting the loss of Russert as a ‘great journalist.’ The Bush administration eviscerated virtually all of Russert’s credibility over the past 8 years, and Russert was usually eager to let them do it. He really has been one of the most glaring examples of our lazy and incompetent media.
    But it’s too bad he died. Levi
    And Levi, your comment on #19 above wasnt very cool. Not very cool at all! Whatever happened to respect for the dead? =O

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  278. SO simply because they are, as you apparently suggest, crappy schools I would rather eat glass than attend, it’s ok to say “No Whites Allowed”?

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  279. Whatever happened to respect for the dead?

    He’d have to have respect for the living first, Love…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  280. Psyberian,

    I’m confused about what your point is but I may not have thought about this subject as much as you. However, in an odd coincidence, I recently read an article about this year’s Morehouse College valedictorian. It was the first white valedictorian in 141 years. The linked article notes that when the student was being recruited Morehouse did not realize he was white.

    This may not relate to your point but I think it’s an interesting story.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  281. Levi,

    What’s important to me right now is some sort of demonstration that you understand where I’m coming from with regards to my allegation of semantics.

    That’s not important at all if your goal is to understand her position, such that you can state it to her satisfaction. You can complain all you like in regard to her statement of your position, as it must meet your satisfaction.

    But you can’t argue all the rest now. You can make those arguments in the next phase, but for now, just state her position as told to you by her. I know DRJ has written some things she absolutely doesn’t agree with in order to state your view to your satisfaction. How’s she doing in that regard?

    Pablo (99243e)

  282. Here you go, Psyberian. What would you think of a company whose work force was comprised of only 1% black people in an area comprised of 77% black people? Racial discrimination per se? Or would you just accept “we love n-words and we want them to work for us but n-words just don’t want to come work here”?

    nk (d86adb)

  283. #280
    Sometimes we give people reason to dislike us when its really not necessary. Wonder what kicks he gets from being such a….. :(

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  284. Wonder what kicks he gets from being such a…

    WHile I’m hardly a specialist in the field, I would suspect it increases his sense of self-imporantce, and feeds a martyr complex…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  285. Levi,

    Let’s chat a minute. It would be a lot better for my argument if I said that Jeremiah Wright is racist and anti-American. Then I could quote his numerous racist, anti-American comments and claim victory. But the fact is I think it may be complicated than that … that Wright’s black liberation theology may have caused him to use this rhetoric. In my opinion, this helps your argument as much as mine.

    Having said that, I also think Wright is anti-American and hate-filled because, after years of spouting this rhetoric, he probably believes the hateful things he says about America and Americans. It’s also possible he’s motivated by a desire to get attention and gain prominence in the black community. I don’t know what’s in his head and heart.

    If you are worried that I’m going to equate black separatism with racism, I won’t and I don’t. But I will argue that some black separatists, possibly including Jeremiah Wright, are racists.

    Now that we’ve chatted, here’s the point: None of this should matter to you right now. At this point, we’re talking about viewpoints, not answers. My opinions on this aren’t set in stone and I’m learning from this experience. I hope you are, too.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  286. That’s a good point, and I think you are right that most people who advocate separation based on race are racists.

    But if that’s always true, how do you explain all-black colleges? Are the students, administrators, faculty and supporters of all-black colleges racists?

    What do you mean all-black? As long as they’re not black-only, they’re not black separatists.

    Are there schools in this country being run by black people that don’t accept white people that I’m not aware of?

    Levi (76ef55)

  287. Now that we’ve chatted, here’s the point: None of this should matter to you right now. At this point, we’re talking about viewpoints, not answers. My opinions on this aren’t set in stone and I’m learning from this experience. I hope you are, too.

    You’re the one that brought this up, though. I thought we were still in the quibble-airing phase of the challenge when you decided it was a good time to make the distinction between black separatism and racism.

    And think for a minute about what you just said here:

    It would be a lot better for my argument if I said that Jeremiah Wright is racist and anti-American.

    I’m supposed to be stating your argument, remember? And your quibble with how I state it is that I state it even better than you would? Your complaint is that I did it too well?

    Levi (76ef55)

  288. Still trying to throw haymakers when demonstrating simple understanding wins the bet….

    Levi, how did DRJ do in stating your position in #208 and 209?

    Pablo (99243e)

  289. Still trying to throw haymakers when demonstrating simple understanding wins the bet….

    Do you understand this?

    Levi, how did DRJ do in stating your position in #208 and 209?

    All she really needs in #208 is the first paragraph to sum up the liberal position on Rev. Wright. The second paragraph isn’t so much part of the actual position as it is an argument that liberals make in support of it.

    I’d like to note that at this point, DRJ has effectively said that my original statement of her position was an even more optimal one than she would have made herself, and that her original statement of my position left out completely what is basically the most important part.

    Levi (76ef55)

  290. Bedtime, just so you know.

    Levi (76ef55)

  291. DRJ, at some point, patience wears out, doesn’t it?

    Patterico (cb443b)

  292. I’m running out of ways to communicate with Levi. We’re not on the same wavelength here.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  293. It’s an even better argument still, Levi, that Obama is the devil incarnate. Behold the power of that argument. But it’s not DRJ’s argument. So summarize her argument already. Now that we’re almost at 300 comments, summarize her argument. Not a better one. Hers.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  294. He’s not on the same wavelength with anyone.

    If I could physically grab him by the collar and scream ANSWER THE QUESTION!!! and slap him a few times, I could at least get the satisfaction of having slapped him. But he still wouldn’t answer the question.

    It’s like he’s speaking a different language. The words are the same, he spells them right, etc. But a basic ability to communicate is lacking — the ability to process what people are saying and to respond appropriately. It’s just not there.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  295. Levi’s typical of what I’ve seen elsewhere and identified as likely ANSWER/ACORN plants. They hang around websites likely to be critical of their guy/gal, and simply gum up the works by hijacking threads. Fortunately the spam filters now prevent them from posting meaningless links over and over again. The old OpEd Forums at the NYT were famous for having those kinds of trolls around. I’m convinced Levi is paid to simply hang out here and attempt to run threads into the ground with prattle.

    wls (0ee728)

  296. Patterico – You know the easy solution to your frustration is at your fingertips.

    No, not that solution!

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  297. Maybe, but I think he likes to win arguments for the sake of winning. I understand that – it feels good to win – but that’s not my goal when I’m on the internet.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  298. On the plus side, there’s been a lot more decent dialogue.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  299. “Maybe, but I think he likes to win arguments for the sake of winning.”

    DRJ – Apart from finding an old bit of writing of yours tonight, which I don’t consider an argument, I can’t remember an argument he’s won here can you? The deal tonight was just memory, not using logic or persuasion to defeat an argument.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  300. daleyrocks,

    I was thinking about Levi’s #290, where it was important to him to say he did a better initial job at stating the conservative position and that I did a poor job stating his position.

    DRJ (1a5f9b)

  301. “Now that we’ve chatted, here’s the point: None of this should matter to you right now. At this point, we’re talking about viewpoints, not answers. My opinions on this aren’t set in stone and I’m learning from this experience. I hope you are, too.”

    You’re the one that brought this up, though.

    No, she wasn’t. She said “Finally, please note that in my earlier comment I said I don’t think Wright is un-American anymore than I think he’s racist.” That was in reference to an earlier comment in this thread, and it is true. You are the one that changed the subject from a clarification of an earlier comment in this thread to “I’ve never said X in my life.”

    Personally, I don’t think your original characterization of Republican views on Jeremiah Wright are that far ff the mark. I certainly believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and anti-American, if not un-American (not sure what the latter term means). Not sure too many conservatives or Republicans would make the leap from there to thinking Obama being is as racist or un-/anti-American as Wright, though. For Obama, it’s more a case of judgment, or lack thereof, akin to a white guy who doesn’t hate blacks or Jews, but joins the Klan anyway because he enjoys donning sheets and hanging out with his buds.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  302. For Obama, it’s more a case of judgment, or lack thereof, akin to a white guy who doesn’t hate blacks or Jews, but joins the Klan anyway because he enjoys donning sheets and hanging out with his buds.

    And remember, Obama himself asked us to look at his judgment, since he has limited or no experience in matters concerning the office he seeks.

    Paul (19c9b7)

  303. Comment by DRJ — 6/19/2008 @ 11:49 pm

    Well…it’s true that “winning” seems all important to Levi. But I think Levi’s confusion at 9:52 happened because he’s confusing argument with position. (Deliberate since he wants to “win?” Possible, but Patterico later used the same word at 10:56 – though I think he also meant position.)

    I’m supposed to be stating your argument, remember?
    Comment by Levi — 6/19/2008 @ 9:52 pm

    No, you’re supposed to be stating her position. Argument in favor of the position comes later. What DRJ said (pls correct me if I’m wrong, DRJ) is that it would be better for her argument (later) if she took a different position now. But (she implies) since she doesn’t believe that different position, she’s not going to take that one.

    Did I get that right, DRJ?

    no one you know (1ebbb1)

  304. Maybe, but I think he likes to win arguments for the sake of winning. I understand that – it feels good to win – but that’s not my goal when I’m on the internet

    It occurs to me that Tiny Dancer’s problem is not unlike this one…

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  305. Good Allah.

    DRJ – You are a saint, and it is good to see you around again 😉

    JD (75f5c3)

  306. Thank you Levi, DRJ and Your Masthead Majesty for this read. I hope today will bring a return of clarifying positions between Levi and DRJ. If so, I may learn something here I’ve not found anywhere else (clarity on positions without vituperation), and I entreat the two of you to resume.

    Toward that goal: Levi, in your #290, you stated “All she really needs in #208 is the first paragraph to sum up the liberal position on Rev. Wright. The second paragraph isn’t so much part of the actual position as it is an argument that liberals make in support of it.”

    DRJ’s #208 stated:

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. The only reason conservatives care about Wright is because they are faced with a hopeless Presidential election and will say and do anything to get elected, including exploiting whatever racism is left in this country.

    Missing now is said summary.

    DRJ’s second paragraph (below) you find irrelevant. Correct? It there anything in your position still missing that should be addressed by DRJ?

    Further, Wright’s opinions do not compare to the opinions espoused by conservative evangelists who claim American policies provoked God to punish America. Conservative politicians are not condemned for associating with those conservative evangelists even though they are far more extreme, numerous, vocal and influential.

    Also in your #290, Levi, you stated:

    “…DRJ has effectively said that my original statement of her position was an even more optimal one than she would have made herself…”

    Would you please entertain a jet-lagged gal by kindly restating your statement of her position? I personally am having great difficulty trying to find it among the many comments.

    EHeavenlyGads (f29174)

  307. It’s way up there…

    #124 he states his first (of many) attempts, but DRJ quotes it in #151… So I would suggest starting there…

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  308. It’s an even better argument still, Levi, that Obama is the devil incarnate. Behold the power of that argument. But it’s not DRJ’s argument. So summarize her argument already. Now that we’re almost at 300 comments, summarize her argument. Not a better one. Hers.

    There’s no way of knowing what her argument is. Look at what she says in #286:

    If you are worried that I’m going to equate black separatism with racism, I won’t and I don’t. But I will argue that some black separatists, possibly including Jeremiah Wright, are racists.

    I thought the whole point of contention going back the last 150 posts was that DRJ doesn’t think that Wright is a racist, but here she seems to be saying that she will argue in the ‘Argument Phase’ that he might be a racist. How am I supposed to restate her side of this if she’s allowed to be this vague?

    At this point, I don’t think it’s too much to ask of DRJ for her to make one of two single-sentence posts; either, “I think Rev. Wright is a racist,” or “I do not think Rev. Wright is a racist.” If it’s the first one, there should be nothing wrong with my original statement:

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and un-American, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies. Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as racist and un-American as Rev. Wright.

    If it’s the second, then what is the problem with my revised statement?

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright embraces black separatism and says anti-American things, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of David Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies.

    Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as embracing of black separatism and potentially agrees with some of the anti-American things that Rev. Wright says.

    Levi (76ef55)

  309. Now on to her assignment. This:

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. The only reason conservatives care about Wright is because they are faced with a hopeless Presidential election and will say and do anything to get elected, including exploiting whatever racism is left in this country.

    is perfectly acceptable to me as the liberal position on Rev. Wright. It’s not exactly how I would word it, but we’re two different people, with two different brains. No two liberals are going to word an argument exactly the same. That’s okay. If the goal here is understanding, it would seem to me that it’s more important to get the general idea across, and not harp on word-for-word accuracy.

    However, she seems to want me to get hers right down to the letter of how she would state it. She wants me to load it up with all sorts of nuance and anticipate her supporting arguments. It’s far too rigid, especially if she will only say that Rev. Wright is ‘possibly’ a racist. I’m aware that she’s re-written my restatement further, but doesn’t that defeat the purpose of this exercise? I gave her a tremendous amount of help in defining the liberal position, most of her definition is taken word-for-word from my advice to her, remember when you said this, Patterico?

    The game doesn’t begin until you’ve stated DRJ’s position to her satisfaction. IN YOUR OWN WORDS, with no mocking.

    That’s basically my own statement of the liberal position. Shouldn’t she have to put it in her own words? It doesn’t matter to me one bit, I’m just trying to help you make sure that what everyone is doing is in accordance with your rules.

    If I’m willing to be that accommodating, I don’t think it’s too much to ask that she accommodate a little bit, too.

    Levi (76ef55)

  310. Maybe, but I think he likes to win arguments for the sake of winning. I understand that – it feels good to win – but that’s not my goal when I’m on the internet.

    Don’t fault me for trying to win, there are stakes here. I stand to get something if I win, and I stand to be punished if I lose.

    I was thinking about Levi’s #290, where it was important to him to say he did a better initial job at stating the conservative position and that I did a poor job stating his position.

    It’s important to me that I demonstrate to you people that I understand the conservative position, since that’s what so many of you people seem to think I’m incapable of. I believe thus far that I have done that, and that you’ve demonstrated that you don’t really understand the liberal position.

    Yeah, I’m trying to win.

    Levi (76ef55)

  311. DRJ’s second paragraph (below) you find irrelevant. Correct? It there anything in your position still missing that should be addressed by DRJ?

    No, that’s all she needs.

    Would you please entertain a jet-lagged gal by kindly restating your statement of her position? I personally am having great difficulty trying to find it among the many comments.

    I just re-upped them.

    Levi (76ef55)

  312. It doesn’t matter to me one bit

    Therein lies the fundamental disconnect that everyone was referencing above.

    He just wants to yell, call names, make unfounded assertions, etc … The desire to actually debate and understand simply does not exist.

    JD (75f5c3)

  313. Levi – Why do you refuse to “get” it? You win by understanding. You do not win by arguing.

    JD (75f5c3)

  314. I am going to go out on a limb here, and predict that all of the goodwill extended will end with a result like a compromise with the Dems, much like how President Bush compromised with Sen. Kennedy on No Child Left Behind, and then has consistently had his arm bitten off by the very people he worked with.

    JD (75f5c3)

  315. Why are you people feeding this dysfunctional pig?? Levi is a disgusting little net smear that should be ignored, and others should be warned not to feed this pig.

    PCD (5c49b0)

  316. This… is perfectly acceptable to me as the liberal position on Rev. Wright.

    Good, that part is done.

    There’s no way of knowing what her argument is. Look at what she says in #286:

    All Republicans are American, but not all Americans are Republican. All racists are separatists, but not all separatists are racists. Both of those are logical sentences. The latter seems to me to be DRJ’s position on the issue. I would recommend that you incorporate that line of reasoning into your statement of DRJ’s position. You don’t have to agree with it, you just have to understand what it is. It is quite knowable.

    However, she seems to want me to get hers right down to the letter of how she would state it. She wants me to load it up with all sorts of nuance and anticipate her supporting arguments. It’s far too rigid, especially if she will only say that Rev. Wright is ‘possibly’ a racist.

    You stated that she (as “Republicans”) believes Wright to be a racist. She’s telling you that this isn’t the case. It isn’t niggling, it’s her position. Write it down.

    Pablo (99243e)

  317. No, she wasn’t. She said “Finally, please note that in my earlier comment I said I don’t think Wright is un-American anymore than I think he’s racist.” That was in reference to an earlier comment in this thread, and it is true. You are the one that changed the subject from a clarification of an earlier comment in this thread to “I’ve never said X in my life.”

    That earlier comment is what I was referring to when I said she brought it up.

    Personally, I don’t think your original characterization of Republican views on Jeremiah Wright are that far ff the mark. I certainly believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and anti-American, if not un-American (not sure what the latter term means). Not sure too many conservatives or Republicans would make the leap from there to thinking Obama being is as racist or un-/anti-American as Wright, though. For Obama, it’s more a case of judgment, or lack thereof, akin to a white guy who doesn’t hate blacks or Jews, but joins the Klan anyway because he enjoys donning sheets and hanging out with his buds.

    You can’t have it both ways. You don’t want to call Obama a racist, but you insist that he thinks racists are good people, and he wants to hang out with racists. That doesn’t even make any sense. How many people hang out with Klansmen at Klan rallies because they’re friends with them?

    Levi (76ef55)

  318. Levi…

    We ceratinly can’t know what is in Sen Obama’s head, but he associated with at least one person (with whom he was close) who is on record for saying things that at least have fairly racist tones to them.

    Does that mean I think Rev. Wright is a racist? No, but I suspect he might be, and he at least says racist things. That doesn’t make Obama a racist by definition, but in my mind (and it seems in DRJ’s mind as well) that it calls into question his judgement because, as you rightly asked, “How many people hang out with Klansmen at Klan rallies because they’re friends with them?”.

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  319. You can’t have it both ways. You don’t want to call Obama a racist, but you insist that he thinks racists are good people, and he wants to hang out with racists.

    Again, it does not want to understand, just to argue.

    JD (75f5c3)

  320. All Republicans are American, but not all Americans are Republican. All racists are separatists, but not all separatists are racists. Both of those are logical sentences. The latter seems to me to be DRJ’s position on the issue. I would recommend that you incorporate that line of reasoning into your statement of DRJ’s position. You don’t have to agree with it, you just have to understand what it is. It is quite knowable.

    Did you read what she said in #286?

    If you are worried that I’m going to equate black separatism with racism, I won’t and I don’t. But I will argue that some black separatists, possibly including Jeremiah Wright, are racists.

    This is impossible to understand. She might argue that Rev. Wright is a racist, but it’s wrong for me to state that as her position? What? Does that make sense to you? Furthermore, I’ve incorporated that ‘line of reasoning’ into my statement of her position more than once, I just did it again a few posts ago.

    You stated that she (as “Republicans”) believes Wright to be a racist. She’s telling you that this isn’t the case. It isn’t niggling, it’s her position. Write it down.

    Niggling is how you put it, a ‘quibble’ is what she calls it. Let’s all remind ourselves what the dictionary defines as a quibble, since, you know, ‘words matter:’

    quibble

    1. an instance of the use of ambiguous, prevaricating, or irrelevant language or arguments to evade a point at issue.
    2. the general use of such arguments.
    3. petty or carping criticism; a minor objection.

    Look, there’s even a part where ‘niggling’ is used as a synonym:

    These verbs mean to raise petty or frivolous objections or complaints: quibbling about minor details; a critic who constantly carped; caviling about the price of coffee; an editor who niggled about commas; tried to stop nitpicking all the time; pettifogging about trivialities.

    Let me just copy and paste that entire link for everyone.

    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/quibble

    Levi (76ef55)

  321. I suppose the word “possibly” didn’t register…

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  322. We ceratinly can’t know what is in Sen Obama’s head, but he associated with at least one person (with whom he was close) who is on record for saying things that at least have fairly racist tones to them.

    Does that mean I think Rev. Wright is a racist? No, but I suspect he might be, and he at least says racist things. That doesn’t make Obama a racist by definition, but in my mind (and it seems in DRJ’s mind as well) that it calls into question his judgement because, as you rightly asked, “How many people hang out with Klansmen at Klan rallies because they’re friends with them?”.

    So what you’re saying is that if Obama were 100% white instead of just 50% white, his judgment is so poor that he would be the one guy in the history of the Klan that joined just to hang out?

    Levi (76ef55)

  323. Bombast, argument, assertion. Predictable as the Cubs not winning the World Series.

    JD (75f5c3)

  324. I suppose the word “possibly” didn’t register…

    ‘Possibly’ is the word I am focusing on. I’m trying to hammer down the specifics, and she’s now saying that she might argue that he’s a racist, but she also might not. How am I supposed to get her position right if she seemingly doesn’t know what she’s going to do?

    And again, I’ve restated her position at least a half a dozen times now with ‘black separatist’ replacing ‘racist.’

    Levi (76ef55)

  325. He simply cannot be that obtuse. It cannot be willful, as he is too consistently and pigheadedly wrong, and badly wrong. It would require monumental effort to be that wrong, and that big of an asshat all the time. It has to be a naturally occurring phenomena with Levi.

    JD (75f5c3)

  326. And again, I’ve restated her position at least a half a dozen times now

    And yet, you have not done so in a manner that the infinitely patient DRJ agrees with, ergo, you have failed at the first step, which is being able to accurately summarize the opposition’s position.

    JD (75f5c3)

  327. Levi’s typical of what I’ve seen elsewhere and identified as likely ANSWER/ACORN plants. They hang around websites likely to be critical of their guy/gal, and simply gum up the works by hijacking threads. Fortunately the spam filters now prevent them from posting meaningless links over and over again. The old OpEd Forums at the NYT were famous for having those kinds of trolls around. I’m convinced Levi is paid to simply hang out here and attempt to run threads into the ground with prattle.

    Lol!

    Levi (76ef55)

  328. It would be wonderful to be color-blind to the mixed breed Great Black Hope! Like Martin Luther King espoused about not judging based on color od one’s skin, I’m happy to judge Urkel on the content of his character. Of course I find that totally lacking- he’s duplicitous, shows no loyalty to his own family or “friends” he gets called out on and still the multitudes flock to him, blinded by some apparent mass hypnosis quality. Can someone even point out any of Bambi’s “promised” policy prescriptions that show any logic or sense? I don’t mean that BS about a different kind of politics or the earth now healing/ocean levels falling with him on the scene. And I don’t give a rat’s ass if some living on the public teat family making millions has difficulty finding fresh fruit for their cherubs or paying off student loans.
    Someone elsewhere wrote that you have those governed by “feelings” predisposed to Barack Hussein and “thinkers” going for McCain. I liken levi somewhat to Mikey Moore’s propaganda. Some will buy into it and others, with perhaps more common sense, will realize how full of brown29 he really is.

    madmax333 (6791ca)

  329. “Bombast, argument, assertion. Predictable as the Cubs not winning the World Series.”

    JD – This year is the year! LOL

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  330. Niggling is how you put it, a ‘quibble’ is what she calls it. Let’s all remind ourselves what the dictionary defines as a quibble, since, you know, ‘words matter:’

    Regardless of what she or I called it, she noted it as being inconsistent with her position and in being need of correction. And she mentioned it as a quibble in the course of offering you a compliment, because, well, she’s kind and polite. I would say that she used the term quibble in the “minor objection” sense.

    I think the remaining issues are detailed in #207/209.

    Pablo (99243e)

  331. Regardless of what she or I called it, she noted it as being inconsistent with her position and in being need of correction. And she mentioned it as a quibble in the course of offering you a compliment, because, well, she’s kind and polite. I would say that she used the term quibble in the “minor objection” sense.

    I think the remaining issues are detailed in #207/209.

    If all she’s going to do is rewrite what I wrote and basically say, ‘This is exactly what you have to say to understand my position,’ then what is the point of this whole exercise? I thought I was supposed to figure it out for myself? I didn’t simply rewrite her outline of my position, I gave her feedback, and she basically copied it verbatim. Well what’s the point? I state my position, she copies it, she states her position, I copy it? Isn’t that counter to the spirit of this entire process of demonstrating you understand the other person’s position using, and this is directly from Patterico, YOUR OWN WORDS?

    Levi (76ef55)

  332. Perhaps it’s counter to the spirit for you. But you’ll note that DRJ managed it to your admitted satisfaction, even with you noting that “It’s not exactly how I would word it…”

    She got there by correcting the parts of her statement that you disagreed with, and now we have a statement in her words that you accept as your position. Her words, your ideas. You do the same, and you will have figured out her position, you will understand it because you wrote it and you’ll have won $10 of Patterico’s money.

    Pablo (99243e)

  333. Comment #334 – (unless someone else hits it first)

    The challenge was issued somewhere near comment 100.

    There’s been no actual debate, and the first portion of the challenge still has not been met.

    Will it take 200-300 comments to hash out a reasonable argument on every thread?

    Apogee (366e8b)

  334. Apogee – Sadly, yes.

    JD (75f5c3)

  335. 4 days, 8 hours ago, and we’re not there. 200-300 comments still hasn’t done it. I don’t know that it is possible with this one. I suspect it isn’t.

    Pablo (99243e)

  336. It’s noteworthy that Levi has now spent better than two days arguing with DRJ about what her position is.

    I’m left hopeful, but for what, I’m not telling.

    Pablo (99243e)

  337. More hopeful than I, Pablo.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  338. Let me make one thing perfectly clear. The current ruling Senate Democrats DO hang out with a Klansman, Sen. Byrd.

    PCD (5c49b0)

  339. Levi,

    I have not read any comments since approximately #300 but I will catch up with them later. Instead, I’ve been thinking about Jeremiah Wright. I agree your first effort was a correct statement of my position.

    That was the easy part. The hard part was understanding why it took me so long to accept. I spent a lot of time trying to explain Jeremiah Wright’s statements as based on something other than his racist and anti-American beliefs, but the fact is there is no other explanation and it saddens me that Wright and his followers are mired in so much hate.

    Thus, Levi, I accept your initial statement in comment #124, and I’m reprinting it here for clarity:

    Republicans believe that Jeremiah Wright is racist and un-American, and they evidence this with statements excerpted from his sermons such as ‘God Damn America’ and ‘America’s chickens coming home to roost,’ as well as Wright’s church’s citing of [James] Cone’s black liberation theology as one of their core philosophies.

    Further, they believe that due to the fact that Barack Obama attended Wright’s church for 20 years, was married there, and had his kids baptized there, there is a fatal flaw in Barack Obama’s judgment that would permeate through his potential Presidency and do great damage to the country, and that Obama might very well be as racist and un-American as Rev. Wright.

    Thank you for your patience.

    Would you reprint the statement of the liberal position that you endorse, or do we need to discuss it further?

    DRJ (6ae0d1)

  340. We’re halfway there. DRJ has accepted Levi’s statement as a fair statement of her position.

    Levi is still hedging on the other half.

    He said part of what DRJ said is a fair statement of the liberal position. To quote Jeremiah Wright, no no no! The issue is whether it’s a fair statement of *your* position.

    You also said it’s not the way you would write it. Don’t care. The question is whether it’s a *fair statement* of your position. If it is not, IN ANY RESPECT, say why.

    So you can do one of two things:

    1) Say: “DRJ, you fairly stated my position when you said . . .” and quote it.

    2) Explain why she has not.

    Also, tell me whether you want to go double or nothing as discussed before.

    Patterico (8bfc64)

  341. I’ve said that I will accept this probably about 100 comments ago.

    Oops, I mean, DRJ, you fairly stated my position when you said…

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. The only reason conservatives care about Wright is because they are faced with a hopeless Presidential election and will say and do anything to get elected, including exploiting whatever racism is left in this country.

    What is the double or nothing again?

    Levi (76ef55)

  342. Levi #321 – As you noted, I said this earlier:

    If you are worried that I’m going to equate black separatism with racism, I won’t and I don’t. But I will argue that some black separatists, possibly including Jeremiah Wright, are racists.

    I’m not sure why that confuses you unless our definitions of black separatists are at odds. In my opinion, not all black separatists are racists and thus I won’t argue that. However, I think some black separatists are racists.

    Levi #332:

    If all she’s going to do is rewrite what I wrote and basically say, ‘This is exactly what you have to say to understand my position,’ then what is the point of this whole exercise? I thought I was supposed to figure it out for myself? I didn’t simply rewrite her outline of my position, I gave her feedback, and she basically copied it verbatim. Well what’s the point? I state my position, she copies it, she states her position, I copy it? Isn’t that counter to the spirit of this entire process of demonstrating you understand the other person’s position using, and this is directly from Patterico, YOUR OWN WORDS?

    There have been three versions of the liberal statement: 1., 2., and 3. You approved version 3.:

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. The only reason conservatives care about Wright is because they are faced with a hopeless Presidential election and will say and do anything to get elected, including exploiting whatever racism is left in this country.

    I wrote the first sentence of the final version and you wrote the second sentence, but I wrote many other sentences that you considered and a few you approved but discarded as unnecessary.

    In any event, the issue is whether you think I understand and fairly stated your position. If not, if you want to discuss it further, or if you want me to rephrase the second sentence in my own words, I will be happy to do so.

    DRJ (6ae0d1)

  343. Really, it should be in your own words, DRJ.

    Patterico (cb443b)

  344. Okay.

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. Conservatives believe anti-Bush sentiment and McCain’s lackluster support from his base make it virtually impossible for McCain to win this election so they are willing to do anything to win.

    I also want to clarify something about Levi’s statement of the conservative position: I still believe black separatism is important to this discussion and I plan on raising it if we continue this debate. I will argue, in part, that Obama’s close relationship with Jeremiah Wright and his “fatal flaw in … judgment” is that he tolerates and accepts an extreme form of black separatism.

    I don’t want to seem like I’m hiding this point so I’m raising it now.

    DRJ (6ae0d1)

  345. Sorry, I left out the last part of my liberal statement:

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. Conservatives believe anti-Bush sentiment and McCain’s lackluster support from his base make it virtually impossible for McCain to win this election so they are willing to do or say anything to win, including exploiting racism.

    Is this right, Levi?

    DRJ (6ae0d1)

  346. On second thought, what about this:

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. The overwhelming national support for Barack Obama, extensive anti-Bush sentiment, and McCain’s lackluster support from his base make it virtually impossible for the GOP to win this election so conservatives are willing to do or say anything to win, including exploiting racism.

    DRJ (6ae0d1)

  347. I love the racism charges, brought up by the Obamalamadingdong dickwad himself. Rick Moran has some great analysis today of this pre-emptive attack on any GOP criticism of BO and his hate-whitey spouse. I think this clown Obama is a great danger and must be stopped.

    http://www.rightwingnuthouse.com

    madmax333 (428029)

  348. I pre-emptively denounce and condemn all of you as racist sexist homophobes for any and all future policy disagreements with Baracky “If you say my middle name you are a racist” Obama.

    JD (191be1)

  349. Does that make him Barack Iusmmnyaar Obama?

    DRJ (6ae0d1)

  350. Exactly, DRJ. And we all know that Iysmmnyaar is a racist Republican code-word. Consider yourself denounced.

    Did you get that picture of my little angel that I emailed you?

    JD (191be1)

  351. Most excellent. Been waiting for this to resume.

    EHeavenlyGads (f29174)

  352. JD,

    No, I did not. Please send it again because there’s nothing I would enjoy seeing more.

    DRJ (6ae0d1)

  353. I sent it from my work, email. I will send it again on Monday morning.

    JD (191be1)

  354. Something to look forward to! Thanks, JD.

    DRJ (6ae0d1)

  355. Hmmmm…got awfully quiet in here, didn’t it?

    Pablo (99243e)

  356. I guess Mr. Sunny found out just how much work it is to actually be Lord and Master of the Conservative Blogosphere.

    Paul (0ea0cf)

  357. is this thing still going on? if patterico wants to give his money to commenters, how about he plays me in chess or go at $100/game? it would be like taking $100 bills from a baby.

    assistant devil's advocate (923027)

  358. is this thing still going on?

    Only if Mr. Sunny shows up again.

    Paul (0ea0cf)

  359. Levitra has a tendency to get scarce when cornered into answering questions rather than foaming at the mouth about conservatives. It’s an uncomfortable position for him because he doesn’t have any answers, just invective.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  360. Levi,

    Patterico asked me to state the liberal position in my own words:

    Liberals believe that Jeremiah Wright’s statements are irrelevant because Barack Obama is not responsible for statements other people make. The overwhelming national support for Barack Obama, extensive anti-Bush sentiment, and McCain’s lackluster support from his base make it virtually impossible for the GOP to win this election so conservatives are willing to do or say anything to win, including exploiting racism.

    Can we discuss it?

    DRJ (81c148)

  361. I dunno; I vote Levi’s out for the weekend or something – his comment #342 (see Patterico at #341) doesn’t sound like someone who doesn’t want to finish this thing.

    Oh the suspense. :) Thanks to DRJ’s plus Patterico’s megapatience, plus (credit where credit’s due) Levi’s willingness to stick with this thing, all Levi has to do to win 10 bucks is to either say “OK” or tell DRJ how she can correct her statement to better fit his position.

    Can he do it? Will he do it? Cmon Levi, you’re almost there…

    no one you know (1ebbb1)

  362. no one you know,

    I agree. I think Levi is busy and that he will return when he can. I updated my comment so it would be easier for him to find.

    DRJ (81c148)

  363. Re: the original post, Tom Brokaw will replace Tim Russert as moderator of Meet The Press through the 2008 election.

    DRJ (81c148)

  364. I’ve been switching computers, in case you were wondering, but yeah. I’m ready. I’ve said a number of times already which of DRJ’s statements I find agreeable, her refinements are fine, too. Whatever is supposed to happen next is up to you guys.

    Also, I might be bringing this new computer back to the shop, so you guys might have to go without me again in the near future.

    Levi (74ca1f)

  365. Levi,

    Do me a favor.

    If DRJ’s comment 361 is a fair statement of your position, please say that clearly in a comment. That way, I’ll have something to link when I put up the post where you guys have your debate.

    Patterico (d213a9)

  366. If DRJ’s comment 361 is a fair statement of your position, please say that clearly in a comment.

    Yes it is.

    Levi (74ca1f)


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