Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The Backseat Blogger "Court Challenges Program" challenge: Fun for the whole family.


Since this is now the second time Backseat Blogger has called my rhetorical talents into question, it's time to settle this one way or the other.

In the comments section here, BB accuses me of cutting and running from a legitimate argument:

CC definitely likes to snark. More than a few 'Blogging Whories' are on his hate list.

Challenge him on his arguments though he folds like a house of cards.

This accusation is apparently based on an earlier post by BB, in which he took swipes at both the Status of Women Canada program and the Court Challenges Program, and to which I responded only briefly to his SWC idiocy. In BB's mind, the fact that I didn't demolish every aspect of his entire post somehow suggested that I high-tailed it out of town in abject fear of his overwhelming intellectual and rhetorical superiority. Let me disabuse all of you of that notion forthwith.

In the first place, anyone who writes the following:

So what if I’m late to the program? I mean in our hyperactive news cycles these stories are OLD news…. except for the silly Progressive Bloggers and their stupid ‘you’ve come far enough baby’ campaign.

So what about these programs. I will cheerfully admit that I know virtually nothing about SOW beyond the fact that the minister responsible cut back its funding recently. Cue howls of protest from the usual suspects.

really doesn't have any claim to the moral high ground when it comes to intellectual discourse. Anyone who cheerfully admits he knows nothing about a particular topic, and yet proceeds to slag it in public doesn't have a truckload of credibility, if you catch my drift. But that's not the real issue here.

BB seems to think that, whenever he throws down the gauntlet, I have some sort of obligation to drop whatever I'm doing and respond. I hate to break it to BB but it doesn't work that way.

All of us have our own interests and hobby horses we like to ride. I don't feel any overwhelming duty to react to everything BB writes. In fact, the main reason that I said nothing about the CCP is that I simply didn't know enough about it to comment intelligently. (See how that works, BB? I don't really understand a topic? I keep my mouth shut. What a concept, no?)

But if BB wants to make this personal, no problem -- we can do that. If BB really wants to get into a discussion related to the CCP, here's what we're gonna do.

I want BB to write a thorough criticism of the CCP, defending the CPoC's decision to cut funding for the CCP:

For example, the Court Challenges Program which funded equality and language-rights groups to challenge federal laws -- an initiative long disdained by Conservatives -- is getting the axe.

I realize he's already done that in his earlier post, but I don't want to take advantage of what he might have written in the heat of the moment. I'm offering him the chance to go back, take another look, tidy up his arguments and produce what he considers the definitive piece on why the CCP deserved to get whacked. 'Cuz, here at CC HQ, we're nothing if not fair. And once he finishes that, that's where the fun starts. Because once BB has done that, he can drop me a note and a copy of the new piece and I'm going to post it here, at which point I'm going to ask my readers to tear it to pieces.

"Hang on," BB might howl in my direction, "that's not fair! I was challenging you to refute my argument, not everybody!" To which I would justifiably reply, "Piss off and stop wasting my time."

It's been my experience that wankers in general are only interested in having an "intellectual" discussion on "the issues" if they get to control the format of said discussion. Have you ever noticed how often these wanks think a debate is the best possible forum for getting at "the truth?" In their minds, there's no better way to cut through the crap than to give one person exactly 30 minutes, then the other person 30 minutes, then each person have 5 minutes for closing comments, and so on. Very scheduled, very choreographed, and utterly, utterly useless.

I don't do that shit. It's why I have a public blog, with an open comments section -- so that anyone (with the exception of total dickheads) is free to express an opinion. You don't like something I wrote? Say so. The lines are open. And it's why, if BB wants to suck it up and play this game, then his submission will be fair game for all of my readers. If he sincerely wants to know whether or not his argument is crap, then he should welcome input from everywhere.

(I will, of course, put some reasonable restrictions on what I allow as comments. As long as it addresses the issue and has substance, it stays. If it's just idiotic, vacuous invective -- no matter who it's from -- it's gone. Fair?)

It's your call, BB. If you're up for this, let me know. Then take as long as you need to write out your position, get it to me, I'll post it here, and the readers can have their say. That's how real dialogue works.

But if all you're going to do is bitch and whine about how I can't eviscerate every little thing you write, well, you can stop wasting my time. All that means is that you really don't give a shit about actual discussion, all you want to do is play "gotcha." And, frankly, I don't have time for infantile crap like that. I grew out of that about 20 years ago, and you should, too.

Your move, BB. Put up or shut up.

BY THE WAY, I'm a bit put out at this from BB:

CC definitely likes to snark. More than a few 'Blogging Whories' are on his hate list.

I'm not sure what BB's getting at with that reference to "Blogging Whories" in quotes since, to the best of my knowledge, I have never used that phrase in any post I've ever written, unlike some of the Blogging Tories themselves who routinely use words like "Fiberals" or "Lie-berals."

A small retraction on your part might be in order, BB.

BONUS TRACK: You really should read the entire comments section here where this sentiment:

So ...... the Cynic gets to make up his own facts while criticizing others with the very same claim!
I've seen many of his posts and most of them can be boiled down to this "I'm smart and your [sic] not so don't bother saying anything!"

can be found sandwiched in the midst of the following intellectually upstanding excerpts:

Pointing out lefties are factualy [sic] challenged is comparable to pointing out rain is wet, I mean really why pick a fight with them? Pity them for they know no better and refuse enlightenment as contrary to thier [sic] brainwashing.

There's no redeeming people like Canadian Cynic. If anything, he's probably a big embarrassment to their side, because the only way he knows how to make a point is to make adolescent attempts at cleverness that people who are logical can see right throw [sic].

... A "reality-based community"? I don't know what kind of world you and Canadian Cynic live in, but it's not the real one, last time I checked.

The only reason the left feels a need to respond is because they know we are right and the truth drives then [sic] crazy after getting their own way in the MSM for years.

I recently bought a book by Ron Dreher because it was trashed by the left. I had no intention of buying Steyn's book until the left trashed it. Not only did a [sic] buy a copy, I have bought extra copies for xmas to give for gifts and I recommend it to everyone I know.

They trash you because you are getting under their skin, so keep doing it. The left are mad because no one reads their shit. How many times have you seen leftwing drivel and the comments section is zero.

Hate is all they know, that's why they are socialists...

OK, point taken. I guess I now have a new intellectual standard to live up to. I'll give it my best shot.

11 comments:

thwap said...

It's insane. They describe the left by writing about what they see in the mirror.

Yes, and then they'll write shit like: "I don't know anything about this except that lefties like it and Harper's cutting it and I'm happy>"

They're the loud, vulgar, lowest 30% of the population, ... and they've been entirely discredited.

Anonymous said...

They trash you because you are getting under their skin...

I've seen this written by righties so many times and I'm still bemused by it. Wherever did they learn that "getting under someone's skin" is any kind of achievement in public discourse? They have, of course, learned that somewhere, because that is precisely what a lot of them spend their time doing: making irritating, baseless assertions about their political adversaries, making racist and bigoted statements that are generally considered unfit for polite discussion, and arguing politics based solely on belief and faith rather than on reality.

Then, when sensible people express their profound irritation at this, they consider that a victory.

This is appallingly juvenile. I always get the impression that so many conservative bloggers are just angry little teenagers mouthing off to their parents. Some are actual juveniles, but some really are old enough to know better.

Given the aging spoiled brats who represent their views in the media (Frum, Steyn, Levant, Marsden, Worthington) and in politics (Harper, MacKay, Baird, Gallant, Poilievre), I guess it's hardly surprising.

I can't wait until we throw these little deliquents out.

GoodGrief said...

Thank you for my chuckle of he day. Someone has need of a dictionary and a course or two in rational, logical thinking. To base one's required reading list on one's conception that the "lefties" don't like it is rather pathetic and gives his/her arguments zero credibility.

Anonymous said...

CC,

Sounds like a fair challenge, I'm looking forward to it.

Ti-guy,

You're the master:

They have, of course, learned that somewhere, because that is precisely what a lot of them spend their time doing: making irritating, baseless assertions about their political adversaries, making racist and bigoted statements that are generally considered unfit for polite discussion

Hearing your rebuke about "baseless assertions about political adversaries" and statements "considered unfit for polite discussion" really warms my heart. Maybe we do have some common ground.

Reminds me of something said by this ruffian as he was making baseless assertions that he flatly refused to substantiate:

Yeah, well, who cares. You fucked some chick and she tells you’d make a good poltician. I believe she’s mistaken. You not only would make a horrible politican, but in addition, you’re probably a bad lay.

Some people, eh?

Anonymous said...

You're the master:

I'll stop here.

I knew Olaf would be lurking, ready to pounce on my hypocrisy. I'm calling this Olaf-bait from now on.

Two things, Olaf:

1. I do not have a blog. I'm just an anonymous commenter. If I had a blog, I would use my own name and think carefully about what words I would want to attach to my name and immortalise on teh Internets. I generally take Conserva-boob bloggers far more seriously than I do their commenters.

2. I'm not a public figure.

3. You are quite often the text-book definition of a troll, although you go to great pains to insist you're not. In my books, trolls get what they're asking for.

Anonymous said...

*sigh*. That was three things.

CC said...

Um ... guys? Let's stick to the issue at hand, shall we?

Anonymous said...

Ti,

So since you're not a public figure, don't have a blog and are just an anonymous commenter, you're absolved of the standards of consistency and civility which you hold others too?

Also, I'm not necessarily a troll; I commented approvingly on CC's recommendation, on his blog. Criticizing you doesn't make someone a troll.

Ok, I'm done. Sorry CC, you're right.

Also, if BB doesn't take you up on your offer, I'll be glad to put together a post in opposition to the CCP (or revise one I've already written), and you can post it allowing your minions to rip me apart. I'd like that actually.

Anonymous said...

So since you're not a public figure, don't have a blog and are just an anonymous commenter, you're absolved of the standards of consistency and civility which you hold others too?

Yup.

Also, I'm not necessarily a troll; I commented approvingly on CC's recommendation, on his blog. Criticizing you doesn't make someone a troll.

Right. You say you're not necessarily a troll. I said you are quite often a troll. You certainly are fixated on progressive bloggers. I think you do much better on you're own blog, by the way.

Um ... guys? Let's stick to the issue at hand, shall we?

What was the issue again?

thwap said...

The subject was "Backseat Blogger's" incoherent call for genuine debate ...

Paladiea said...

Right winger's definition of "debate" is usually "shut up and acknowlege I'm right. Screw you and your facts."