Monday, May 27, 2013

"Socialism Forever": 'Conversations' with an Anarcho-Communist/Syndicalist

Was talking to Facebook friend Anthony about private roads, after he shared a stupid meme insinuating "tea partiers" caused budget cuts which then caused the recent Washington bridge-collapse.

And then... Basically out of the blue, this happened.

What you're about to read is not really a "conversation", but we'll call it that for the sake of the blog post. I haven't engaged people in this way in a very long time online (mostly because I'm just too damn busy and it's not worth my limited time to do), but I will say this... it's pretty representative of every other time I've unearthed a communist on the internet.

The following is the uncut exchange beginning with the very first comment Mimi wrote through the last thing she said after I decided to leave the conversation. I've altered nothing, and I can assure you there was no baiting in my previous posts.


Now.... I should have probably completely stopped interacting earlier, but honestly, I'm intrigued by the existence of people like this.

You'll notice that there's absolutely no intellectual humility, no desire or willingness to discuss or engage on ideas, there's a focus only on labels over substance, inventing litmus tests and bare assertions of authority in Mimi's posts...  All while her actual arguments are nothing but crass ad hominems and strawmen.

At no point does she seem to genuinely want to know what I actually think - or why - and instead, she's perfectly happy to call me an "Ayn Randian Right wing libertarian piece of shit".

Now... She's not interested in telling me why I'm wrong, either. All she does is tell me that I am wrong, and that I am obviously a "brainwashed lemming", a "foxnews fool", and - my favorite common refrain from people who can't defend their positions with reason or evidence - just a "media producer" who couldn't possibly know anything about anything. Then there's the bizarre dragging of Ayn Rand (who I did not mention one time) and her acceptance of social security and medicare into the discussion, even though that had nothing to do with anything.

In truth, sometimes I find myself lowering myself to the level of these people (although I rarely ever initiate this kind of tone), but mostly I find this to be really amusing. A woman who claims to have a "finance degree and a postgrad in public policy" cannot have a remotely rational discussion about economics and public policy.

Is it sad? Embarrassing? Maybe it's just predictable...

I don't know anymore, and although I hate to say it, this the whole thing is exceptionally common in my discussions with socialists and communists and has been for years.

I really don't know how they manage to make it through academic programs in public policy or finance or anything else. It seriously just makes me suspect that the majority of academic programs are simply echo-chambers utterly devoid of emphasis on critical thinking and formal (or even informal) logic.

For years I spent a lot of time debating with people about these kinds of things. I've mostly stopped doing that at this point in my life, because of experiences like this.


Nate P said...

Mr. Malone,

I am a random guy who reads your blog occasionally because I bookmarked it years ago after seeing it linked somewhere (don't remember). I like your writing style, and I like your unique insights regarding the film and media industries and political intersections therewith.

But copying an argument from Facebook and appealing for support is a low-quality post! Why bother? The world is replete with morons of all stripes, including many on all sides of major social/political divides. I can only assume that you engage with such idiots regularly, as do most of us. I don't find it interesting to read the details of your protracted comment battle with someone who didn't know what they were talking about.

Sean W. Malone said...

Yet curiously, the only time you comment is to tell me what you find uninteresting?

As it happens, though, I actually quit engaging with these kinds of idiots a while ago and this was the first time in quite a while that I've had that kind of protracted conversation. I was more a reminder than anything else.

Nate P said...

Yes, I realize that it's odd to only comment on an article I find uninteresting. However, I think that constructive criticism of a bland article might be more helpful than simply saying "good article!" or "couldn't agree more!". Overall, this is a nice blog, you should be proud. Most of my non-commenting stems from the fact that I only very occasionally visit, skim through a few posts and see what sticks. Thanks for putting this stuff out there, even if it's unclear where it's ending up or who's reading.

I'm in Louisville, KY by the way.