Thursday, August 03, 2006

Memo to Stupid

Dear Patterico:

Do you really want to go down this road?

Since we're all happily taking cheap potshots at people who have the guts to attach their names to their opinions . . .
Patterico | Homepage | 08.03.06 - 2:24 am | #


You seem to think there's a big step to take.

I'm not taking it.

But I think you're a gutless coward for hiding behind your little pseudonym.

Whatever floats your boat, dude . . .
Patterico | Homepage | 08.03.06 - 3:40 am | #

Do you really? Shall we all live in a world free of cowardly pseudonyms? All of us, without exception?

Some knives cut both ways,



Question for the commenters: How much internet suckiness of late can be laid at the feet of right-wing lawyers? It's really proving my hypothesis that (1) lawyers become lawyers because they aren't smart enough to do anything else and (2) cannot adapt to new environments without first trying frantically to sue and regulate them into habitats that suit them better. Unfortunately for the rest of us, "habitats that suit them better" most resemble sterile padded cells filled with needledicked inmates arguing about minutiae.

Get off the internets, lawyers. No one likes you offline and no one likes you online. Symmetry achieved.

Follow up question for commenters: Is the aim of hinting at the ability to out, even if one does not actually follow through with the act, to intimidate? Eh, never mind. I can answer that one myself.

(Via zuzu at Feministe.)

UPDATE: Perhaps some definitions are in order:

Main Entry: in·teg·ri·ty
Pronunciation: in-'te-gr&-tE
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English integrite, from Middle French and Latin; Middle French integrité, from Latin integritat-, integritas, from integr-, integer entire
1 : firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values : INCORRUPTIBILITY
2 : an unimpaired condition : SOUNDNESS
3 : the quality or state of being complete or undivided : COMPLETENESS
synonym see HONESTY

Main Entry: prin·ci·ple
Pronunciation: 'prin(t)-s(&-)p&l, -s&-b&l
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English, from Middle French principe, principle, from Old French, from Latin principium beginning, from princip-, princeps initiator -- more at PRINCE
1 a : a comprehensive and fundamental law, doctrine, or assumption b (1) : a rule or code of conduct (2) : habitual devotion to right principles [a man of principle] c : the laws or facts of nature underlying the working of an artificial device

And one more:

Main Entry: situation ethics
Function: noun
: a system of ethics by which acts are judged within their contexts instead of by categorical principles -- called also situational ethics

So: The next time a right-wing blogger wants to rail about how The Left has no principles, no integrity, and acts only by shifty, morally relativistic situation ethics, please remember which side demolished every principle behind this and it didn't even take them six months. Which reminds me of another definition, actually:

Main Entry: cred·i·bil·i·ty
Pronunciation: "kre-d&-'bi-l&-tE
Function: noun
1 : the quality or power of inspiring belief [an account lacking in credibility]
2 : capacity for belief [strains her reader's credibility -- Times Literary Supplement]

As in the sentence, "I grant far greater credibility to pseudonymous bloggers who abide by consistent principles than I do to those who blog under their real names but practice only the most convenient situation ethics."

UPDATE THE SECOND: When I grow up, I want to be Sifu Tweety.

UPDATE THE THIRD: Ah, that's who the esteemed Patterico reminds me of:

Pestering? Check. Officious? Check. Perpetually outraged? Check. Anatomically suspect? Oh, let's not go there. I'm unwilling to perform the necessary verification. Besides, what a wholly uncivil thing to suggest!


Rob said...

"Is the aim of hinting at the ability to out, even if one does not actually follow through with the act, to intimidate?"

Yes, absolutely.

ilyka said...

Hey! We got the same answer!

[suspicious look]

Did you copy off me?


Norbizness said...

Hey, William Atherton was pretty good in The Sugarland Express. But he did give Val Kilmer an unnecessarily hard time in Real Genius.

ilyka said...

I'm definitely thinking the character and not the actor, The Left. The way he's so bullheaded about shutting off the protection grid and then has the nerve to look surprised when he winds up covered in Stay-Puft detritus, that sort of thing.

Helen said...

Outing in blogland is a grievous sin. I thought remarkable restraint was shown on the cat and mouse dialogue-if I'd have been Tbogg I would have been reaching across the internet table with a bottle of tequila and demanding him to throw down or fuck off.

Being outed is one of my biggest fears and will be the one thing, besides blatant boredom, that will cause me to close blog shop and, I dunno, take up stained glass or some other kind of hippy shit.

I'm going to be using the words "semi-pseudonymous" all day now just because.

belledame222 said...

i read as much of all that as i could stand. wtf is this guy's trauma, anyway?

ilyka said...

wtf is this guy's trauma, anyway?

A friend suggested to me in email that it's a direct result of prolonged exposure to and association with one Geoff Linsted*--the theory being that Geoff is not so much human as he is viral.

It ain't the kookiest theory I've heard. Not by a long shot.

*I love anagrams, especially when they frustrate the sorts of people who spend HOURS Googling and Technorati-ing their OWN NAMES.

Zendo Deb said...

Lawyers sue. That's what they do in 21st century America. That and lobby Congress to ensure that anyone trying to limit their ability to sue is dealt with.

And when they continually fail... as they did with the tobacco companies... they get Congress to change the rules so they can win.

They sue because they know what is better for you than you do. Look for them to sue the fast-food people to eliminate french fries - they are already starting to plan this in Britain where they may only sue to make fries off-limits to fat people. They know what is good for you and they know you can't be trusted to make your own decisions.

Lawyers sue because it makes them feel like they are doing something important instead being the parasites that they are.

Lawyers sue because they can't get their social agendas enacted through the legislature. Because they believe that big corporations are responsible for everything and individuals are responsible for nothing.

Shakespeare was right... all those years ago.

Zendo Deb said...

What's the difference between a dead lawyer in the middle of the road, and a dead skunk in the middle of the road?

There are skid marks in front of the skunk.

Craig R. said...

Well, Zendo, I guess you really don't think you will ever need to worry when someone from the government wants to take you downtown to talk with them, eh?

Because, I'm sure, that just because *you* haven't done anything "wrong" *you* will not have to worry about a thing....