Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Bloggertarian Monitoring Service

What is it about Lefties drives them to turn an argument into an obsession?
The Bloggertarian Monitoring Service

A like-minded group of concerned citizens dedicated to the study of arrested development in adult males and the obsessive ahistorical liberalism that many of them tend to promote on weblogs.

This behaviour and belief system is almost unknown outside of this medium.

Maybe amongst the circles you move in, old boy, but not amongst those with whom I mix.

Anyway, to answer my own question, I think that it is probably a lack of a sense of humour, frankly. Either that or massive insecurity. Probably both, actually.

They're just blogs, guys: grow up.

23 comments:

Blognor Regis said...

Projecting saddos all. Poss "in more dire need of a blowjob than any white man in history".

jgball said...

That sums it up. Wait till they find out that you, "no need any steenking badges", to do it either. That'll be when bansterbation mode kicks in.

Budgie said...

Watch statists/collectivists squirm as they try to avoid owning up to their pantheon of once heroes: Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot, even the pathetic, nasty, socialist Hugo Chavez.

All these evil men needed was the "useful idiots" who glory the state above individual liberty. Sadly they are still around.

DocBud said...

What is it about Lefties drives them to turn an argument into an obsession?
Your response is far too kind and understanding, DK. It is more likely that they are simply arrogant, anally retentive dickheads convinced of their own self-worth and the inferiority of anyone who does not hang on every moronic word that dribbles unaided by brain engagement from their mouths.

Ingram said...

Proponants of the Nanny State trying to nanny different minded bloggers. Quel surprise.

I esepecially like this quote from one of the linked members, who can't just contend himself with attacking those on the other side of the political spectrum to himself:

"Beware the claims of these people that they are of the Left. They are of the new Hard Right. They are radical individualists, anti-collectivists who have merely included women, homosexuals and artists in their coalition."

Need I say more?!

Anonymous said...

They [...] have merely included women, homosexuals and artists in their coalition.

Ah - but not badgers? Fascist right wing bastard bloggers, the lot you!

Mark Wadsworth said...

Did Milton Friedman have a 'blog?

Longrider said...

Neither having nor wanting Facebook account, I cannot enjoy the pleasure of peeping in. Still, I'm probably missing nothing. These people do take themselves somewhat seriously, don't they? The term "wankers" springs to mind for some odd reason...

I mean, is anyone going to actually take any notice of them? Is anything going to actually change as a consequence of their obsessive little site?

Should I be quaking in my shoes yet?

No need to answer that one, it's rhetorical...

Longrider said...

It's also worth adding that more and more folk I speak to through work and leisure express concern about the parlous state of government, the nanny state, stealth taxes, constant interference in our lives by bureaucrats and, well, all the things I rant about on my blog, frankly. We, it seems are the norm. ;)

woman on a raft said...

I am committed

You are obsessed

He is mad

They are bloggers

Paulie said...

You still think that you're 'libertarians' don't you, you shower of feudalist shitheads?

Devil's Kitchen said...

Go fuck yourself, Paulie. You probably think you are a libertarian too, but you aren't: you are a socialist cunt.

Now piss off.

DK

Paulie said...

Ooooh!

Just because you're losing!
Just because you're losing!

Devil's Kitchen said...

No, Paulie, it's because you are a tedious, pious cunt who is sucking all of the fun out of this medium. This is why everyone mocked your shitty Euston Manifesto: because you are an over-earnest talker of shite.

As libertarian is defined in Wikipedia, i.e. in the US sense, I am a libertarian. You can, if you like, call me an Objectivist in the Rand sense if you prefer.

You, however, are a statist and a warmonger and, as such, beneath my contempt.

So, do the rest of us a favour and piss off.

DK

Paulie said...

Warmonger?

Wash your potty mouth out, you public school tosser. Unless you behave, I may ask Pootergeek to come back and kick your posh arse for you again. Or maybe I'll ask Tom to come back and wipe the floor with your stupid "you own your own life" arsewash... again.

You call yourself a 'libertarian' and a 'minarchist'?

You.
Are.
A.
Fucking.
Monarchist.
For.
Christ's.
Sake.

All of this L-word horseshit (... objectivist... whatever ... I recall that you got no further than the first para of Wikipedia's definition of 'libertarian' before you discovered that you're a 'consequentialist' - so you've read the second para now have you?) is just a bit of window dressing for your infantile and reactionary dismissal of the very idea of collective action.

And I'm not a socialist cunt, if you don't mind. I'm a social democrat cunt. I've noticed that some of your compatriots here don't seem to be able to comprehend any difference between National Socialism and 'NuLab' (or is it the hilarious variation, 'ZaNuLab' - I never know?).

Paranoid ahistorical cranks, the lot of you.

Devil's Kitchen said...

"Warmonger?"

Did the Euston Manifesto not endorse international intervention? Because that is how many interpreted Clause 10: A new internationalism.

"Wash your potty mouth out, you public school tosser."

Ah, yes; nothing like a bit of good, old-fashioned class hatred, eh?

"Unless you behave, I may ask Pootergeek to come back and kick your posh arse for you again."

Because you are, obviously, unable to do so. Pootergeek never did so on my site anyway. Most people disregarded him: for fuck's sake, he even managed to unite ChickenYoghurt and myself...

"Or maybe I'll ask Tom to come back and wipe the floor with your stupid "you own your own life" arsewash... again."

I was unaware that he had wiped the floor with me. He challenged me on a certain assertion and I tried to answer; at least I actually considered his questions and did my best. The ball is currently in his court I believe.

"You call yourself a 'libertarian' and a 'minarchist'?

You.
Are.
A.
Fucking.
Monarchist.
For.
Christ's.
Sake."


Sure, on a practical level for the present. But then, I have never regarded the monarchy as currently constituted as being either better than me, or my owner.

"All of this L-word horseshit (... objectivist... whatever ... I recall that you got no further than the first para of Wikipedia's definition of 'libertarian' before you discovered that you're a 'consequentialist' - so you've read the second para now have you?) is just a bit of window dressing for your infantile and reactionary dismissal of the very idea of collective action."

I first quoted Wikipedia over a year ago. But, yes, you are quite right: I do not believe in coerced collective action. Voluntary collective action, fine.

I'm sorry, had I not made that clear enough? The market is morally right: enforced collectivism is not.

"And I'm not a socialist cunt, if you don't mind. I'm a social democrat cunt."

And what, precisely, does that mean? It means that you are a statist; it means that you believe in coerced collectivism.

You would have me participate and pay for your beliefs whether I believe them or not.

I do not.

"I've noticed that some of your compatriots here don't seem to be able to comprehend any difference between National Socialism and 'NuLab' (or is it the hilarious variation, 'ZaNuLab' - I never know?).

Paranoid ahistorical cranks, the lot of you."


I am not responsible for my commenters; I allow free commenting and I delete nothing. It's called free speech and it's the only reason why your tedious tirades are still hanging about.

DK

Paulie said...

Euston Manifesto? I signed it - like lots of people who were ambivalent about the war in Iraq - for example. I had no problem with the liberation of Kosovo during a attempted mass-clearance. I think that Bosnia shouldn't have been left at the mercy of Serbian butchers any more than the Czechs shouldn't have been left to the mercy of the Nazis in the 1930s.

I believe in humanitarian intervention when many lives are at risk. Does that make me a statist?

There is - by the way - an honourable tradition on the left of promoting voluntary co-operation and mutualism, preferring non-state solutions wherever possible. Stop your minarchist monarchist posturing for a bit and I might tell you a bit more about it.

You really don't see how weird it is to be lectured on how 'every man for himself' is the fairest way to do things by someone who has grown up under the statist jackboot of .... er.... one of the fairest, most prosperous and most liberal societies that the world has ever known, do you? And to do so from the perspective of having a privileged education (what a waste of money!) is doubly bizarre.

Follow the links - Pootergeek wiped the floor with you in *his* comments. I doubt if you'll find a neutral judge that will say otherwise. And Tom managed to ridicule your very first 'you own your own life' sentence so comprehensively that it would be unkind of him to continue the discussion further.

I'm not as nice as Tom - mainly because you started this whole exchange off a couple of weeks ago by calling me lots of different kinds of cunt. I'm not generally abusive on blogs unless some nasty repeat-offender like you decides to dispense with the 'mutual respect' shield in the way you did in that first post in which you attacked me. You call *everyone* that you don't agree with a cunt and you think it's just fine to do so. Your house. Your rules. This is the blog where you come to be called a shithead. It works both ways.

I'll tell you what: You find me an example of a state that is a functioning democracy that doesn't indulge in what you call 'coerced collective action / enforced collectivism, and I'll stop referring to you in the terms that you deserve to be referred to; A reactionary anti-democratic feudalist.

TTFN

Devil's Kitchen said...

"Euston Manifesto? I signed it - like lots of people who were ambivalent about the war in Iraq - for example. I had no problem with the liberation of Kosovo during a attempted mass-clearance. I think that Bosnia shouldn't have been left at the mercy of Serbian butchers any more than the Czechs shouldn't have been left to the mercy of the Nazis in the 1930s.

I believe in humanitarian intervention when many lives are at risk. Does that make me a statist?"


Fundamentally, yes; only a state can declare war on another state. Although I am not sure whether I disagree with you or not, to be honest.

But where do you draw the line? There are so many places where we could intervene: do we pick and choose? And how do we do that.

Certainly, I am ambivalent about the Iraq War (and Afghanistan, for that matter). There was that point, just after the first elections in Iraq (when I started blogging) in January 2005, when I thought "you know, this might just work." It might even be doing so. It's difficult to tell.

Look, my support for human beings to be able to do what they want, without coercion, is, I believe, fundamentally a decent, humanitarian thing. However, I will accept that maybe we should spread that right. But how, practically, do we do that? Military invasion does not seem to be the answer.

"There is - by the way - an honourable tradition on the left of promoting voluntary co-operation and mutualism, preferring non-state solutions wherever possible. Stop your minarchist monarchist posturing for a bit and I might tell you a bit more about it."

Sure. But the trouble is that that tradition does not usually last long. At least not by governments; because I am sure that Labour or Tories or whatever are just as sure that they are right as you and I are. The difference is that they have the power to enforce what they think is right and it seems that they are utterly unable to prevent themselves from doing so.

"You really don't see how weird it is to be lectured on how 'every man for himself' is the fairest way to do things by someone who has grown up under the statist jackboot of .... er.... one of the fairest, most prosperous and most liberal societies that the world has ever known, do you? And to do so from the perspective of having a privileged education (what a waste of money!) is doubly bizarre."

I have always maintained that a private education (at a good school) is not so much about the exam results -- or however you want to measure it -- as about the opportunities to do other things that are not merely academic.

Since I have had these opportunities (which were markedly absent from the state school that I attended before that), I would like to see them extended to everyone. And it isn't about the money: it's about the process. Government fucks up everything it attempts to run, so it shouldn't do it.

"Follow the links - Pootergeek wiped the floor with you in *his* comments. I doubt if you'll find a neutral judge that will say otherwise. And Tom managed to ridicule your very first 'you own your own life' sentence so comprehensively that it would be unkind of him to continue the discussion further."

Except that he utterly failed to convince me or any other commenters that did not already hold his view, i.e. Andrew Russell. To me, the idea that you own your life is so self-evident that I hadn't even bothered to think about it. he made me think about it (which has always been, for me, the very best aspect of blogging) but I still remain convinced that I own my life.

That he remains equally convinced that one does not own one's life -- or that a life cannot be owned -- only shows how people can have entirely different mindsets.

"I'm not as nice as Tom - mainly because you started this whole exchange off a couple of weeks ago by calling me lots of different kinds of cunt. I'm not generally abusive on blogs unless some nasty repeat-offender like you decides to dispense with the 'mutual respect' shield in the way you did in that first post in which you attacked me. You call *everyone* that you don't agree with a cunt and you think it's just fine to do so. Your house. Your rules. This is the blog where you come to be called a shithead. It works both ways."

Of course it does, and that's fine and fair enough. I didn't swear at you in my first reply to you because I was willing to engage in debate. You can say that that's crap, etc. etc. and you'd probably have good reason. It doesn't really matter at present: you are, of course, entirely at liberty to call me a cunt.

"I'll tell you what: You find me an example of a state that is a functioning democracy that doesn't indulge in what you call 'coerced collective action / enforced collectivism, and I'll stop referring to you in the terms that you deserve to be referred to; A reactionary anti-democratic feudalist."

Hmmmm. "Reactionary"? Someone who reacts against change? Hardly.

"Anti-democratic"? I may not like the way that this country is run, but I don't think that I'd advocate dictatorship either.

"Feudalist"? Certainly not; that absolutely implies that another man may own you and the point of owning yourself (and the other strictures that go with the libertarian video that I posted) is that you own yourself.

Naturally, the idea that you own your own life implies that, given certain conditions, someone else may own you: but then we know that people have done so throughout history. Slavery has always been with us and it still is.

That does not mean that I advocate that someone else may own you; rather the opposite, in fact.

In a practical sense, there are almost infinite shades of grey here. You would, I imagine, start from a position in which, for instance, there should be help for the poor.

I would start from a position that there should not be.

In practical terms, in "planning" a manifesto, we would probably end up not a million miles away from each other, but with different end objectives.

My end objective (starting from where we are now) would be to drop the marginal deduction rates of benefits (using, for instance, a CBI) and end up needing no "extorted" benefits at all (but charities, that people gave to voluntarily -- voluntary collectivism, if you like -- would step in. People would give what they felt was right).

I imagine that you would go entirely the other way; you believe that the rich should be taxed more in order to subsidise the poor?

It's two different belief systems coming from two different philosophical outlooks and, I would imagine, two different upbringings; I shouldn't think that we will fundamentally agree on anything, so it seems rather pointless to keep hammering away at it.

DK

Paulie said...

So, let me get this straight.

You call me a warmonger on the strength of me having signed the Euston Manifesto. I give you an answer that you think you may agree with, but you're not going to withdraw the 'warmonger' gibe?

Thanks for the speak-your-brains treatise in humanitarian intervention by the way - learned tons there!

Do you *really* think that 'reactionary' just means 'reacts against change'? Do you think that this absolves you of the charge that you want to reintroduce an approach to education and healthcare that hasn't been considered since universal suffrage played itself out?

I notice that you avoided the question "...find me an example of a state that is a functioning democracy that doesn't indulge in what you call 'coerced collective action / enforced collectivism..." - it's your Max Weber, innit? The things that you call statism are simply the products of democracy. They are there because - when you give unprivileged people the vote - they demand them. You can get your 'statism' abolished if you want to abolish democracy, but I doubt if you'll own up to that one will you?

And you imagine that charities will step in to fill the social gap left by a withdrawal of the state? On what evidence would you base such an assumption?

We are not on different positions that could be reconciled by creative manifesto-drafting DK, we are on different planets. On yours, the products of democracy can be repealed and satisfactorily replaced by alms and a social settlement that was last tried in Ireland during the potato famine (or, more recently, in that true minarchist paradise, Sudan) and you imagine that this would be a good thing. It's why I keep describing you as ahistorical. You don't know *why* what you call 'statism' exists. You just think it's something that's been done to you by 'cunts'.

That's why the 'bloggertarian' tag is so useful. You lot never get challenged. You get to rail against everything you don't like without ever proposing anything that wouldn't get you laughed at. And because you swear a lot, there is a small but avid little group of your fellow reactionaries who laugh along at it and come back for more every day.

It's been like pulling teeth, but you and your cohorts have provided a manifesto that would make Mr Gradgrind blush. You really *can't* practically believe what you say, can you? Do you really think that charities would provide a comprehensive safety net? Do you really believe that – on your ‘you own your own twaddle’ formula – that this wouldn’t rapidly resolve itself into something approximating serfdom for most people? It *must* be a bit of window dressing for a very very right-wing desire to simply avoid addressing the questions of inequality, poverty and insecurity because they are things that haven't ever really popped onto your horizon in a meaningful way.

You really aren’t a libertarian any more than Norman Tebbit was. You are just way too Tory for the Tories.

Devil's Kitchen said...

"You call me a warmonger on the strength of me having signed the Euston Manifesto. I give you an answer that you think you may agree with, but you're not going to withdraw the 'warmonger' gibe?"

The tone of my answer was: I just don't know. Bur generally, I think that your humanitarian intervention is difficult to apply: I asked you questions about how you would apply it. You didn't answer them.

"Humanitarian intervention" means starting wars, Paulie: if I were to agree with you, I wouldn't withdraw my "warmonger" jibe from you -- I would simply apply it to myself as well.

"Thanks for the speak-your-brains treatise in humanitarian intervention by the way - learned tons there!"

You would prefer me to simply put my opinions out there without inviting any debate? I further note that you still did not answer any of my questions.

"Do you *really* think that 'reactionary' just means 'reacts against change'? Do you think that this absolves you of the charge that you want to reintroduce an approach to education and healthcare that hasn't been considered since universal suffrage played itself out?"

In this country, maybe. But then this country ain't doing particularly well. I advocate a health insurance system modelled on something close to the Swiss system (which works considerably better than the NHS) and I support an education system that is almost identical to what the Swedes have (which provides far better results than in this country).

Is this reactionary? Why? And why, when I advocate systems that provide better results, is this a bad thing? I thought that you were interested in helping people in society. Or have I got that wrong?

"You can get your 'statism' abolished if you want to abolish democracy, but I doubt if you'll own up to that one will you?"

Again, you confuse a personal philosophy with a practical manifesto. You lack subtlety, Paulie.

"And you imagine that charities will step in to fill the social gap left by a withdrawal of the state? On what evidence would you base such an assumption?"

Because that is precisely where the big charitable movement started: in the Victorian age (and earlier) when socially aware people banded together voluntarily to help those who were underprivileged.

It was not as comprehensive as the state, but it started happening at that time for a reason: the ease of communication (and the internal proximity of the cities). People realised that appalling things were happening and they gathered help from those who could; in this day and age, when communication is even easier (both to expose the plight of those truly suffering and for raising funds), charities would become far larger and more comprehensive.

"I notice that you avoided the question "...find me an example of a state that is a functioning democracy that doesn't indulge in what you call 'coerced collective action / enforced collectivism..." - it's your Max Weber, innit?"

OK, I'll offer you an example of a country in which a large number of people -- including those who are not so well off, as the sizes of the donations testify -- want a much smaller, US-libertarian style government: the US.

They, like those of us advocating a brand of libertarianism in this country, at least want the chance to vote for it.

"The things that you call statism are simply the products of democracy. They are there because - when you give unprivileged people the vote - they demand them."

Yes, I know: I got what you were saying about 83,000,000 comments back. That does not alter the fact that I consider the forced confiscation of the products of other people's hard work as morally wrong; I do not view it as any more morally acceptable that those who have the vote always vote to give themselves more of other people's property.

It may be how things work, and you may well call it justice -- I may even agree that a certain level of it is desirable (no civilised country should leave its citizens starving on the streets) -- but, however you dress it up, what you are fundamentally doing is taking the product of one person's hard work and giving it to someone who does no work.

What we are arguing about, really, is whether that is a moral thing to do -- not that you have addressed that: you have simply said that "this is what happens in a democracy. Poorer people vote to give themselves more of other people's money." Well, duuur...

At what level is it acceptable to stop? If you were elected on a platform of 100% income tax that would be redistributed to the poor, would it be a sensible or moral thing to enact that policy, simply because people had voted for it? What about 90%? Or 80%? What's high or low enough for you?

"That's why the 'bloggertarian' tag is so useful. You lot never get challenged."

You really are an arrogant git, aren't you? What are you -- self-proclaimed saviour of the blogosphere? Protector of the minds of people who might agree with what I write? Self-appointed guardian of the poor?

Please, don't make me laugh.

"And because you swear a lot, there is a small but avid little group of your fellow reactionaries who laugh along at it and come back for more every day."

Ah, yes, the old "reactionaries" word again: why not simply call all of my readers "morons", Paulie, because that is what you actually mean, isn't it?

I write this because I enjoy it: my readers read it because they enjoy it.

You do not: fine, bugger off. If all that is happening on this site is one reactionary talking to other reactionaries, why on earth should you care?

We on the Right tend to deride those on the Left as having no sense of humour, no levity of spirit; I hadn't really subscribed to that view before you came along, O Shield Of The Underprivileged, O Defender Of Weaker Minds.

"We are not on different positions that could be reconciled by creative manifesto-drafting DK, we are on different planets. On yours, the products of democracy can be repealed and satisfactorily replaced by alms and a social settlement that was last tried in Ireland during the potato famine (or, more recently, in that true minarchist paradise, Sudan) and you imagine that this would be a good thing. It's why I keep describing you as ahistorical. You don't know *why* what you call 'statism' exists. You just think it's something that's been done to you by 'cunts'."

Which is why this is an utterly pointless debate, Paulie. In your arrogance, you persist in conflating a personal philosophy with a practical settlement -- at what point have I said that I wish on a practical level to abandon democracy -- and you also assume that I have no knowledge of history.

If I didn't believe the things that I said -- with the qualifications that I put on them -- I wouldn't say them.

"It *must* be a bit of window dressing for a very very right-wing desire to simply avoid addressing the questions of inequality, poverty and insecurity because they are things that haven't ever really popped onto your horizon in a meaningful way."

This class warfare thing still isn't impressing anyone, you know. I have met a good number of the people who share these views and very few have a background anywhere near as priviledged as mine: to write off what people believe because of the example of one advocate is a bit cheap, no?

Go away. You are a bore.

DK

Paulie said...

Saviour of the blogosphere?

I hope that you're not suggesting that I'd like you to stop spouting all of this bumwash? Whenever I have a dig at the 'libertarian' (ha ha) right, people accuse me of creating a strawman.

Which is where you come in.

Bore? And you, sir, are a nasty abusive shithead. Go fuck yourself you stupid cunting fucktard.

(Oh! It's easy this, innit?)

Budgie said...

It seemed to me that the argument about "I own my own life" was actually lost by Tom, Paulie, et al.

The clincher is: "what is the outcome of applying the two competing philosophies?". No country is a paradise. And I would be horrified by any country claiming to be, eg the 'workers paradise' of the USSR. Neither is there any country that is purely libertarian or purely collectivist.

Even the USSR allowed (some) peasants to produce food privately. Productivity was vastly better than the collectives - to the benefit of all.

But the more statist/collectivist a country is the worse its record on human rights, individual liberty, and wealth. Whether that statism derives from political ideology such as socialism (Venezuela), or from religious ideology (Sudan).

In contrast a more libertarian country has more individual liberty and fewer politically correct sanctimonious control freaks. Consequently people can get on with their own lives relatively unmolested by the state. It is no secret that millions deplore the actions of the USA as a state; but many of those same millions would dearly love to live there. Some even give their lives for the chance to do so. Puts a new perspective on "I own my own life", don't you think?

Tom said...

Chutzpah award to DK:

You lack subtlety, Paulie.