My dearest correspondent:
I wrote a post wherein I reiterated my claims that (a) our conservative president, Barack Obama, is “a Wall Street-serving corporatist, a radical and lawless executive, and an unrepentant, murderous warmonger very much like his predecessor,” (b) lesser-of-two-evilism is the very mechanism that ensures the continued rightward trajectory of the Democratic Party, and (c) abandoning conservatives in the Democratic Party in droves is the only course of action short of massive civil unrest that has any chance of steering the country even slightly leftward. The post references my ginourmous 6-part opus in which I documented (in excruciating detail, for reasons I explained here) the evidence and reasoning in support of those claims — none of which you have to date acknowledged, much less successfully rebutted.
Instead, you responded to my post with “PLEASE don’t say there isn’t much difference between the two candidates.” You went on to repeat the very same Supreme Court argument that I specifically referred to in my post, which indicates that either you did not read it, you did not comprehend my point, or you believe that I am uninformed about the state of reproductive rights in the U.S. as well as the present makeup of the Supreme Court and therefore in need of being schooled on these topics — by you. And then you said this:
Also, you can visit http://whatthefuckhasobamadonesofar.com to be reminded of some of the non-existent accomplishments of the last four years.
This statement is, of course, snide and patronizing: its implicit premise is that I am under the impression Barack Obama accomplished absolutely nothing of value during his first term, and that I therefore need to be “reminded” of his “nonexistent accomplishments.” I took umbrage at this, not least because of its arrogance and pomposity. Still, it could conceivably come from a simple misreading of my argument — though I find it incredible that anyone could possibly misconstrue that argument as “Barack Obama accomplished absolutely nothing of value during his first term.” The remainder of your original comment is comprised of a series of statements in defense of the ACA/Obamacare.
Perhaps by taking your arguments at face value, addressing them seriously, and assuming that you were actually arguing in good faith, I gave your original comment more credit than it deserved. In fact now I am sure that is the case, because your latest comment clarified a few things for me. I appreciated the opportunity to respond to your original comment in the hope of clarifying for you (and for other confused readers) where you had gotten me badly wrong, pointing out where your statements are unsupported, and explaining why I think they are unpersuasive. Perhaps then you might have meaningfully responded to what I have actually said, a prospect I would have welcomed. This is, after all, how disagreements are resolved, or at least crystallized: by people engaging in well-reasoned, good faith discussions.
But that is not what happened here, is it? No. You responded to me again, and yet you still addressed nothing of substance from my previous post, and nothing of substance in my subsequent reply to you, which you inexplicably characterize as a personal attack. Not only that, you have now doubled down on the snide patronizing. It’s as if by my voicing serious, well-supported criticisms of Barack Obama’s policies — criticisms you have still failed to address — I have engaged in the rhetorical equivalent of baselessly calling your mother a whore.*
I have now concluded that you actually do believe I need to be schooled on the status of reproductive rights in the U.S., the current makeup of the Supreme Court, as well as all of Barack Obama’s accomplishments, and most hilariously, that you are just the d00d to ‘splain all of this to me. On my own blog. Without substantively addressing any of my arguments. (LOL.) Now that I have ceased giving you the benefit of the doubt, your original comment comes across as a non sequitur; it reads like an irrational, defensive rant, the kind that childish bullies (and conservative politicians) revert to when they are called on behavior that they cannot reasonably justify. Thus I feel perfectly justified in responding to your latest comment with exactly the respect it deserves.
I wasn’t being an a$$hole when I posted the link to that website,
Sure you were. And to frame it as if the reason I suggested that you stop being an @$$hole is that you merely posted a link to whatthefuckhasobamadonesofar.com is completely disingenuous. You could have posted it and inquired whether I had seen it or considered it. Instead, you helpfully informed me that I could visit the site “to be reminded of some of the non-existent accomplishments of the last four years.” That’s an @$$hole move, and entirely unwarranted. It’s the reason I responded with “Don’t be an @$$shole. Please point to where I said that the Nobel Peace Prize Winner has accomplished exactly nothing of value, or retract this statement.” I note that you have declined to do either.
it was a futile attempt to remind you, as I do all the rest of the principled purists, that there were some very real and meaningful accomplishments in Obama’s first term.
It was a futile attempt all right, but not because I am a “principled purist.” (LOL!) It was futile because nowhere have I disagreed with the claim that there were some very real and meaningful accomplishments in Obama’s first term. Why, in my very response to you, I enthusiastically applauded his Supreme Court appointment of Sonia Sotomayor, and I acknowledged that reproductive rights is another area where he is clearly better than Mitt Romney. Did you miss that? Or is the real problem that I am just not showing enough proper deference to your favorite Wall Street-serving corporatist/ radical and lawless executive/ unrepentant, murderous warmonger for you?
You seem to like to point out the negatives instead of the positives. You’re more of a glass half-empty cynic I guess.
Right. That is why I have been so fiercely advocating that Democrats abandon lesser-of-two-evilism and stop supporting conservative Democratic candidates: because I’m a bitter Debbie Downer. Hahaha. Let me repeat this for those in the cheap seats: if you can think of any way to move the party leftward other than consistently voting conservative Democrats out of office, I am all ears. I note that you have not offered anything. Maybe you just don’t agree that the party or the country desperately needs to move leftward, because you are a conservative like Barack Obama. (This would explain a lot, actually…)
I prefer to focus on the positives because they outnumber the negatives in my opinion.
Why? An honest, conscientious citizen would focus on both the positives and the negatives. And I sincerely hope you meant to say “outweigh,” rather than “outnumber.” Because if you just listed “all of the stuff I like that Obama did” in one column and “all of the stuff I don’t like that Obama did” in another, counted the items in each list to determine which is numerically longer, and proceeded to dismiss the shorter list regardless of the real-world implications of the policies that are on it, then you would either be a morally malignant monster or an idiot. Or, conceivably, both. Frankly, I would much prefer if you just came right out and said it just doesn’t bother you that our conservative president, Barack Obama, is a Wall Street-serving corporatist, a radical and lawless executive, and an unrepentant, murderous warmonger very much like his predecessor. Sure, you’d be a sociopath, but at least you would be an honest and straightforward one. But if that’s not really the case, perhaps you can help me understand why Bush/Cheney policies are somehow no longer profoundly, unacceptably evil simply because they are being implemented by a Democrat who is a lukewarm advocate for reproductive rights (see, e.g., the Obama administration’s political interference in the FDA’s decision on Plan B).
I honestly don’t get it.
Of course opinions are like a$$holes, we all have one and so we’ll just have to agree to disagree.
This is a fine sentiment in principle. It is worth noting, however, that some “opinions,” such as “The earth is 10,000 years old,” or, say, “Obama’s ACA is an intermediary step toward single payer,” are contravened by logic and mountains of evidence, and can therefore be dismissed (with or without uproarious laughter).
I don’t appreciate your lengthy and particularly nasty attempt at ridiculing and belittling me.
Oh, cupcake. Had I made a “particularly nasty attempt at ridiculing and belittling” you, you can rest assured it would have looked a lot different than the serious, substantive, detailed, factually-supported, well-reasoned, perfectly on-point, entirely appropriate and directly responsive rebuttal I made to your original comment. If my response made you feel ridiculous and small, perhaps you might reconsider why that is the case. (Helpful hint: a mirror, whether real or metaphorical, would undoubtedly prove helpful.)
I’m sure you would’ve rather Romney won since there wasn’t much difference between the two candidates. At least there would be new blood in the White House. All things being equal, change is always good, right?
Um, no, that’s not my argument. I would not prefer a Romney presidency because he’s “new blood” and I believe “change is always good.”
Wow. Either you’re a much bigger @$$hole than I thought, or you’re just not very bright. All right: to be fair, it could instead be that I failed to make my arguments clearly enough to be understood. I admit I’m not a super-genius wordsmith, and poor communication on my part has been the cause for many misunderstandings in the past. So if this were all an honest misunderstanding on your part (unlikely as that now seems to me) it could very well be a result of my own failings as a writer. Assuming that this is the case — and that you are not a much bigger @$$hole than I thought and/or not very bright — I would like to point you to some truly great writers who may prove far more enlightening to you than I have been on these matters:
In closing, I will note that I don’t expect you to meaningfully address a single substantive point I have made in this post. Apparently it’s your M.O. But I will just reiterate here that until you provide compelling evidence and sound arguments that (a) our conservative president, Barack Obama, is not, in fact, “a Wall Street-serving corporatist, a radical and lawless executive, and an unrepentant, murderous warmonger very much like his predecessor,” (b) lesser-of-two-evilism is not, in fact, the very mechanism that ensures the continued rightward trajectory of the Democratic Party, and (c) abandoning conservative Democrats in droves is not, in fact, the only course of action short of massive civil unrest that has any chance of steering the country even slightly leftward, you will have failed to rebut my argument. Again.
-Iris Vander Pluym
* Not that there is anything wrong with a person having multiple sexual partners, either simultaneously or sequentially, provided of course all that parties enthusiastically consent. (Hey, some of my best friends are whores!) I employed the “your mother’s a whore” meme here because it is perfectly representative of the kind schoolyard taunt that tends to upset little boys to the point of knee-jerk defensiveness and irrationality.