Sunday, August 2, 2009

Ethical Debate About Human Rights - Le Fin Peut Etre

My Maybe Last Word to Ezra And Scary Fundamentalist

After Part Deux, I thought it was done. The Keeping Article in The Star Phoenix here though seems to keep rising from the ashes. My problem was that I baited Scary Fundamentalist by email and stated in my blog a nyah, nyah saying that I got the last word, to which he commented, thereby giving him the last word to my now penultimate word. Doggone it.

So, in our little joust Scary Fundamentalist said...

The freedom to be "offensive" is included in the broader notion of freedom of speech. Some of us may regard the words of Ezra and Kathy to be offensive, but we both know that many hold the same sentiments to that which comes from our pulpits or that which lies within the ancient texts we regard as holy.

By destroying the concept of state-run censorship, we set ourselves free to determine for ourselves what is and is not offensive, and use only the means at our own disposal to act accordingly.

For Keeping to denounce what she deems as offensive is definitely valid; only it's about as valid as a soldier criticizing his comrade for a lopsided beret during a deadly firefight...

Interesting analogy SF brings up in light of the comment of SonofaGhost that follows later on, but if the lopsided beret of the one soldier distracts his fellow soldiers, such that they raise their heads at inopportune times, and get them shot off because of the distraction, thus losing the battle, then its validity was far greater than it would have appeared at first blush.

Ezra Levant also decided that he had to get a word in edgewise here as well. Well, not a word, 2,525 to be exact.

Where I got 5 comments to 2 blog posts, 2 of which were my responses to Scary Fundamentalist, making the other 3 all from him, Ezra had gotten 25 Comments to his blog post by the time I posted this maybe final word this morning. 25 ... readers (I mean reader - anyone out there?).

Here are a few of the comments he got, since his were more varied then mine.

Frances wrote yesterday afternoon:
Ezra - you could just have pointed out that Ms Lynch was being overly economical with the truth, with details. You're saying the same thing, but people like Ms Keeping can no longer manufacture outrage and have to deal with your accusations.
Frankly, I liked Frances' turn of phrase "economical with the truth". Very next up was SonofaGhost at 4:03 with the following:
I think you're missing her point.
Yes, HRH Lynch a liar, and raising that as part of discussion of the issue is valid as a reflection of how her other points should be taken.

When referring to her as a liar becomes simply part of a string of invective though it gets lost. She may or may not be odious, old and haggard but those are subjective and irrelevant. By adding liar to an ongoing string of insults it gets ignored and needs constant re-explanation. Which in turn takes momentum from your argument and space/time from the limited amount any media other than your blog may a lot to you.

Any argument is always more effectively made when sticking to points that are objective and relevant. Personal attacks may get those already on your side more emotional in their support, but it has the same effect on opponents, and anyone undecided will, if your lucky, roll their eyes briefly before they glaze over and tune you out completely. Of course as a political partisan you already know that every time you look at the voter turn out numbers. Don't do to free speech what partisanship is already doing to democracy.
I think that SonofaGhost captured what Ms. Keeping was trying to get at in her article, and which Ezra and everyone else missed. Of course, it is pretty hard to hear any bit of common sense from someone when your mind is closed. Ms. Keeping is talking about a debate. I stated in my first posting that for me it is a debate. For Ezra, I think it is a war.

In a war, there are the good guys and the bad guys, us and them. We are right. They are wrong. Someone who agrees with them is therefor wrong, even if tangentially, so to Ezra Ms. Keeping who appeared in person to be on his side, now confuses him by criticising some of his words. She was on my side, but now she is what, a turncoat? No, a realist.

She was telling you what SonofaGhost told you in the comments, neither of whom you will hear, that your strategy has some weak points. I can say it here, and I know you won't listen, because you don't read my blog either, but your strategy of denormalization of the HRCs is a good strategy, but a good strategy is only as good as the last time it was tested in the real world. The real world, not the bloggers who listen to your every word, is starting to tell you that there are small cracks in the strategy. That's not a bad thing. Every strategy has to adapt to trial by fire in the real world. The proof of a good strategist is malleability to real world duress.

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