‘Rebuttal Of The Week!’ #9: Why do people who care about the environment not care about the truth?

The Daily Wire drew attention this week to a revealing new study from the Danish Meteorological Institute. Not only does the study contradict the widely accepted catastrophic man-made climate change official narrative… it 100% refutes the endlessly recycled messaging from the mainstream media, the liberal political class and government funded scientists that the theory of man-made climate change is ‘settled science’ and that there is universal scientific ‘consensus’ on the issue.

a1(read the article here)

In other words… this one study alone ends the debate about whether or not scepticism towards the claims of the climate change establishment is justified. The verdict is in and it is indisputable: IT’S JUSTIFIED!

The fact that this paper is just one in a long series of under reported studies and news items undermining the validity of the ‘consensus’ climate change establishment orthodoxy only helps seal the deal. In February of this year  for example, a whistleblower accused NOAA (one of the government funded scientific bodies that is a primary source for information and data supporting and promoting the man-made climate change premise) of “flagrant manipulation of scientific integrity guidelines and scientific publication standards”. The allegation is that this was done to intentionally “discredit” the so-called “hiatus” – the now two decade-long period in which there has been no global warming.  The whistleblower, former principal scientist of the National Climatic Data Center John Bates, accused senior officials at NOAA of “insisting on decisions and scientific choices that maximized warming and minimized documentation.” (Climate change whistleblower alleges NOAA manipulated data to hide global warming ‘pause’).

Last year, the journal Nature Climate Science published a report titled “making sense of the early-2000s warming slowdown.” The scientists who authored the report presented the following summary:

“It has been claimed that the early-2000s global warming slowdown or hiatus, characterized by a reduced rate of global surface warming, has been overstated, lacks sound scientific basis, or is unsupported by observations. The evidence presented here contradicts these claims.”

John Fyfe, climate modeller at the Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and Analysis in Victoria, British Columbia and lead author of the report described it like this:

“There is this mismatch between what the climate models are producing and what the observations are showing…We can’t ignore it.”

Susan Solomon, a climatologist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge was quoted in the journal Nature that “Fyfe’s framework helps to put twenty-first-century trends into perspective, and clearly indicates that the rate of warming slowed down at a time when greenhouse-gas emissions were rising dramatically.”

I could go on. There are countless other examples like these that receive essentially no attention from the mainstream press. But this is clearly sufficient to justify scepticism in any rational, objective adult about the claims of indisputable veracity made by the man-made climate change establishment and their proxies in the political and media classes.

What cannot be justified in light of information like this is anyone who would still impugn the motives or intelligence of people who simply acknowledge the inconsistencies and contradictions that are right in front of their eyes…. let alone affix to them the pejorative  and inflammatory label of “denier“. To do so would be to exhibit a mindset more analogous to that of a devotee of some pernicious cult rather than a serious minded adult capable of independent thought and reasoning.

Not only is scepticism justified when it comes to these claims… for objective, thinking laypeople who privilege the pursuit of truth it is the only intellectually viable position to hold at this point.

Of course, this is not news to anyone who has bothered to make even a mild effort towards self-directed scrutiny of the climate change issue. As I point out in my ‘Rebuttal Of The Week’ below, every single person who objectively investigates this issue beyond what is spoon-fed to us by the liberal political class and the mainstream media immediately discovers the same thing: this is a far more contentious, uncertain and politicised issue than we have been encouraged to believe. There are massive economic, political, professional, personal and ideological interests at stake in sustaining the myth of catastrophic man-made climate change theory as ‘settled science’. And yet the narrative that has been constructed in the minds of many lay people is one of purely benevolent saviours of ‘Mother Earth’ versus the absolute evil of greedy oil executives and their malevolent or stupid stooges.

Here is my rebuttal to someone who responded to me posting the Daily Wire article by essentially downplaying  the report and making the argument that it’s not the science that’s relevant, but rather it’s caring about the future of the planet that counts.

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly:
I think what happens is that people who have identified with a particular passion for the natural world are told by these establishment interests that if you don’t unreservedly support all things related to climate change… then you don’t really care about the environment. And so people reflexively join the bandwagon in order to feel like they’re doing the right thing, to feel they are part of the right team, like they’re one of the ‘good’ people. They give their unreserved support without thoroughly and critically scrutinising what they’ve been told, who is telling them what to think, what interests are at play, what the alternative perspectives are… and most tellingly, why at a time in which climate change is such a prominent issue, relevant information like this from the Danish Meteorological Institute isn’t headline news… or even mentioned!…. by the CBC, the ABC, Toronto Star, The Age, Globe and Mail, National Post, The Guardian, CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune etc. etc. etc.. And yet every time some wing of the American government like NASA or NOAA issues a misleading press release about ‘the warmest year on record’ it immediately gets splashed across these same media outlets.

For those of us who actively look for information about the climate change issue beyond what is spoon-fed to us by the mainstream media… there is nothing surprising, unique or controversial about this report. Despite what we have been encouraged to believe, there is no shortage of expert opinion and data that challenges the so-called  ‘settled science’ of catastrophic man-made climate change. Everyone who is interested enough to look into it finds the same thing.

Does the preponderance of scientific evidence and opinion that is contrary to the claims of the climate change establishment prove the theory of catastrophic man-made climate change is false? Not necessarily. But it does prove beyond contention that we have been and continue to be lied to by that establishment about the certainty of their theory and the absence of disagreement among experts in their field. It also proves the mainstream media and the liberal political class have helped perpetuate that lie…. if not deliberately, then by systemic incompetence.

Which means the sceptics… or ‘deniers’…. were right all along.

For what it’s worth, here is my personal ‘big-picture’ take on all of this…. EVERYONE cares about the health of the natural environment. But only some people care about the natural environment and also care equally about being told the truth.

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‘Rebuttals of the Week!’ #8: Stephen Colbert’s joke worse than homophobic… it wasn’t funny!

I have always been a big admirer of anyone who has  mastered the art of acerbic wit. The convergence of intelligence, sophistication, humour, critical insight, self-awareness, language skills and a precise comedic timing is damn impressive. People who wield this skill can expose bullshit, enlighten  and make you laugh out loud all at the same time…. often with a single,  impeccably well-observed and penetrating sentence.

The more famous maestros of the artform immediately spring to mind. Think of Christopher Hitchens, Gore Vidal, Winston Churchill or William F. Buckley in the world of politics and commentary. Of course there is Johnny Carson and Woody Allen from mainstream and late-night entertainment. John Lennon was famous for it. There is the genius of the Monty Python crew with their deliciously merciless skewering of the absurdity of the human condition itself.

One of the wonderful things about this talent is that some of its most gifted exponents are completely unknown, otherwise average people from every walk of life and background you can imagine. I’ve met several of them in my time… my own dear ol’ dad was one of the all-time greats.

So when I see bland purveyors of  contemporary ‘infotainment’ lionised by the public as comedic geniuses for smugly purging themselves of whatever adolescent, puerile inanities  happen to emerge from the black hole of narcissism that is the wellspring of their particular brand of creativity…. it bugs me.

Which leads me to my “Rebuttal of the Week” . It is inspired by the recent brouhaha ( or was it a fracas?) over hi-larious conformist,  politically Leftist shill Stephen Colbert’s homo-erotic fantasy about  Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin.

My exchange with commentator Jane C (below), came from her response to Washington Post columnist Craig Konnoth’s weird, social justice warrior-esque, politically correct admonishment of Colbert. Like a lot of people, Konnoth found Colbert’s joke contemptible…. but not because it was infantile, vulgar, self-consciously mean spirited and unfunny.

cv(Read: Craig Konnoth: Sorry, progressives. Gay jokes are never OK, even when you’re bashing Trump)

No, for Konnoth, Colbert’s crime was that he transgressed a sacrosanct edict of the religion of ‘progressive’-Leftism: Thou shalt not make a “gay joke”. For it has been ordained that gay jokes are “never okay”. This makes Colbert guilty of the sin of “homophobia”. And, as Konnoth reminds us, homophobia is just another form of misogyny.

Yes folks, I kid you not. Konnoth actually makes that argument in his column. Let’s take a moment to fully absorb what is happening here: We have a major American mainstream news outlet, The Washington Post (and also Canada’s National Post by reprinting the piece) promoting the notion that a particularly boorish joke about falatio is proof of an irrational ‘fear‘ of homosexuals… which is really just an expression of hatred of women.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why we should be mad at Stephen Colbert.

And they wonder why intelligent, reasonable adults are abandoning their lousy publications in droves.

The fact that morally superior ‘progressives’ like commentator Jane C. are fighting with morally superior ‘progressives’ like writer Craig Konnoth over who is most against homophobia and therefore the most morally superior is not only hilarious (ironically, unlike Colbert)…. it is yet another example of how the anti-rational, cognitively self-annihilating ideological foundation of the ‘progressive’-Left is causing the whole thing to collapse in upon itself ( see Progressive Left is Eating Itself Alive! ).

Here is Jane’s comment and my ‘Rebuttal of the Week!’:

Jane C: It’s a BRILLIANT monologue – super funny and it did exactly what he intended to – piss off the conservatives and those who are actually homophobic and thought that gay jokes are not ok, so here’s looking at you, writer of this article.

Going to Getugly  Going to Getugly:  Unfortunately Jane, we live in an era in which people’s context for what constitutes the zenith of wit and sophisticated late night TV humour stretches all the way back to the early days of Jimmy Kimmel.

That’s the only plausible explanation for how anyone could possibly mistake Colbert’s spewing of adolescent cheap shots designed to pander to the mundane, predictable prejudices of his comfortable, liberal, middle class audience as somehow worthy of the evaluation of “BRILLIANT”.

If you want to consider yourself some kind of aficionado of comedy… you may want to extend your exposure to the genre beyond the immediate era. If you do, you will notice that until very recently, comedy that was recognized as ‘BRILLIANT’ actually challenged and unsettled the assumptions of the comfortable, status-quo class. Now, it panders to it.

And even the most mainstream late night television hosts and their audiences could once distinguish between acerbic wit and infantile, crude vindictiveness.

Based on your comments, you clearly represent a distinct changing of the guard in this respect.

Rebuttals of the Week! #5: Metaphorical shark… meet your trans/non-binary/twin spirited/ gender fluid jumpers! (part 1)

There was a rare sighting last week of what had long been thought to be merely a creature of myth and fantasy. No… it wasn’t bigfoot, a unicorn or a women’s studies graduate with a useful job. It was a prominent academic from a major university with the guts and integrity to publicly oppose the tyranny of politically correct, SJW-style, “progressive”, Left-wing ideology.

Honest to God. I saw it with my own eyes.

untitledGlobe and Mail: U of T professor’s stand against genderless pronouns draws fire

Jordan Peterson is a popular and prominent psychology professor at the University of Toronto who has found himself on the receiving end of some intense hostility from the tolerant, non-judgemental, morally superior champions of diversity at his esteemed institution of higher learning.

His offence was to use a series of video lectures to present a detailed and reasoned critique of how anti-rational, politically correct ideology has infiltrated the legal and education systems and how it poses a real threat to the values of freedom of thought and speech. But what really drove the PC crowd nuts was his rejection of the premise that he is obligated to affirm the subjective self-conception of people who identify as transgendered by adopting their preferred use of pronouns. Peterson went to great lengths to justify his refusal to submit to this expectation on the basis of logic, principle and the right to intellectual autonomy.

The self-anointed enlightened class responded to all this logic and carefully reasoned argument by chucking the label ‘bigot’ at him, attacking his character and generally calling for his head on a platter.

As is evident from the sample of comments below and in the next Rebuttals of the Week!, the catalyst for their outrage was not the quality of Peterson’s argument, but his unwillingness to conform to concepts they deem to be supreme and sacrosanct.

As I have pointed out in other Rebuttals of the Week!, it is this intolerance of nonconformity that drives the aggressive emotionalism that is so characteristic of the progressive’s response to dissenting points of view. And it is the privileging of the pre-rational urge to attain social affirmation above all other considerations – including objectivity, reason and the pursuit of truth – that determines the progressive’s opinion and makes him immune to  interventions of reason.

Here is the first sample of my interactions with Professor Peterson’s critics….

M CW

freedom of speech is still fully intact. you still have the complete right to say things that are blatantly ignorant (like the idea of this event…) and not risk persecution from your government.

what free speech DOESNT let you do is literally DENY someone’s gender identity because its you dont believe in it and have no one call you out for it.

you people are a goddamn joke.

Going to Getugly Freedom let’s people do all kinds of things other people dislike. Your apparent inability to tolerate that represents the real problem here.

M CW

no the real problem here is that people like you want a world where you can say whatever you want without any thought to the harm it will do to already marginalized people without. that, i have an inability to tolerate.

Okay. Now the next comment from WR is a perfect example of how NOT to confront the assertions of ‘progressives’. It isn’t that the point he is trying to make is incorrect. It’s that simply presenting an alternative opinion to the one being expressed by a ‘progressive’ doesn’t accomplish anything. Remember, they’ve already decided that not sharing their opinion is the same thing as being wrong and stupid. They don’t assess the veracity of your opinion in contrast to their own… they just react to the insolence of not submitting to the absolute perfection of their position.

William RutherfordW R 

Except that this is about a law that turns ANY statement against trans people a hatecrime… that’s not equality.

Compare that response to the one I present below. Notice that I don’t offer a contradictory set of subjective assertions about the topic. Instead, I address the specifics of MCW‘s reasoning process. I highlight objective inconsistencies in his logic. How he takes for granted his own entitlement to indulge in the very freedoms that he advocates should be denied to others. How his lack of hesitation to insult, generalize and dismiss the validity of other people’s perspective and experience demonstrates not only a profound hypocrisy, but a crude and genuine nastiness that reflect the very character flaws he claims to revile.

Going to Getugly

Nope. The problem is that you don’t recognise that insisting that principles apply only in certain circumstances according to your personal preferences and biases is irrational, unethical and only appealing to hypocrites.

For instance… you have expressed your contempt for ‘people like me’ who you characterise as expecting the freedom to “say whatever you want” without regard for the negative feelings it may inspire in other people. You have even written: “you people are a goddamn joke”.

But it is perfectly obvious that you grant YOURSELF the freedom to make sweeping negative generalisations; to issue insulting, unproven condemnations of character; to be deliberately antagonistic and insulting …. and essentially say “whatever you want” with no regard for the feelings of the people to whom you’ve directed those harsh comments. You’ve even expressed the sentiment that ‘people like me’ don’t deserve to be recognised as existing…. since we are nothing but a “goddamn joke”.

Now either it is wrong and worthy of contempt to “want a world where you can say whatever you want without any thought to the harm” it may cause other people…. or it’s only wrong when people other than YOU do it in whatever context you’ve personally decided makes it okay. Clearly, you take for granted it is the latter. Which makes you unprincipled and a hypocrite.

And as is so often the case when you challenge the absolute certainty of a progressive’s sense of moral and intellectual superiority by applying his own judgements back at him… MCW spewed a couple weak insults and ran away.

M CW  yup play victim

M CW   get your sympathy likes fam

The fact that the only response to my argument you feel you can offer is this transparently weak ad hominem should inspire some serious reevaluation of your position.

Stay tuned. We’re just getting started and there is a lot more to come on this issue in the next Rebuttals of the Week!

Rebuttals of the week! #4: How do you drive ‘progressives’ crazy? Ask them to prove their point.

One thing that seems to catch ‘progressives’ completely off-guard is asking them to support their opinions and assertions. You often get the impression that the necessity of basing opinions on things you know to be… well, true – is just something that never occurred to them.  It’s as if expecting them to be able to prove their point is some kind of atrocious breach of ‘progressive’ etiquette or something – and all the language of compassion and tolerance is very quickly dropped when they are confronted with the fact that they really don’t know why they believe the things they espouse.

You will see in this exchange with ‘DE‘ an example of how quick ‘progressives’ are to get their backs up when you have the temerity to politely ask them to justify the definitive assertions.

The context for this exchange was a question in a survey distributed by Canadian MP Kellie Leitch to her supporters. The questions was, “Should the Canadian government screen potential immigrants for anti-Canadian values as part of its normal screening for refugees and landed immigrants?”

The National Post published a column by Matt Gurney about the inevitable controversy that arose, called  : Is it unCanadian to worry that some would-be Canadians may be unCanadian?

Here was DE‘s take on the subject:

Doug EarlDE

 Canadian values change over time, and immigration has been one of the factors contributing to that change. Stagnant values, or the quest to somehow freeze the values of a country in time, only leads to intolerance because it codifies one set of values over all others and it is usually the values of the dominant class that get so codified.

It was that first sentence in particular that caught my attention. It’s the kind of bland, generically ‘progressive’ platitude that is easy to agree with. But does it really mean anything? Is his assertion about the world connected to any actual knowledge or information? And if not, then why offer it as an opinion or hold it as a belief?

So I asked….

How has immigration “been one of the factors contributing to that change”?

“only leads to intolerance because it codifies one set of values over all others”
Are you suggesting that there are not values that are better than others?

Doug EarlDE

 Because new people bring new ideas and values to a situation and for a society to progress both sets of values must be reconciled. And yes there are values that are better than others, but which are which is subjective. Generally speaking, people who think their values are 100 per cent superior to everyone else’s have at least one glaring flaw in their value system–a gross and misplaced sense of their own moral superiority. That’s not a value that needs to be perpetuated. In fact, it’s a value that often leads to aggression, and, on a societal level, to war.

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly

That all sounds very nice …. but you didn’t answer the question. What ‘new ideas and values’ did Canada gain that it had lacked and which immigration brought and improved us?

Doug EarlDE

Obviously you feel that the continuous immigration to Canada over the past 400 or so years, including that of your own ancestors, has added nothing of value to the country. In your case, I’m afraid I am forced to agree.

Whoa! Where did that come from? Like I said, as is the case with most ‘progressives’, it didn’t take much for DE to drop the facade of tolerant, non-judgemental, compassionate pluralist and reveal the nasty, vindictive nature just below the surface.

And notice that he responds to a request for evidence by inventing an unflattering opinion for me that I have never expressed but which he asserts I “obviously feel”. He then attacks me for the opinion that he just made up and projected onto me.

It’s important to pause and think about that response and what it says about the character, the intellect and the reasoning skills of the person. It’s important because once you are aware of it, you will see that ‘progressives’ resort to this over and over again. And the purpose of ‘Rebuttals of the Week’! is to build a case that objectively demonstrates that people who are attracted to and who embrace ‘progressive’ concepts, ideals, politics and policies are inherently poor thinkers.

Here is how I responded to DE‘s ‘straw man’ argument. As you will see, he just kept digging himself deeper into the same hole:

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly

What is obvious is that not only have you made an assertion that you can’t support… but one which you don’t actually believe. If you did believe it, you would have answered the question without hesitation the first time… let alone the second time. Of course, this is precisely why I posed the question: To highlight the fact that people such as yourself like to say things that make you feel very pluralistic and superior….but which have no connection to anything you actually know to be real. This is nothing but a self serving pose that you have adopted.

Doug EarlDE

Yeah, except there’s something you’re missing and that is that your question is so obviously that of a troll. You know as well as I do that immigrants from over 200 countries who have come here over the past 400 years have brought an almost infinite multiplicity of ideas and values that are essential to the character of this country and that one of the foundational ideas of Canada is multiculturalism itself–to your great dismay, I’m sure. So if you want a list, troll, why don’t you make us a list of all the countries that have provided immigrants to this great country, but whose people you believe have made no contribution. Start with the country of your own ancestors, Underabridgeia.

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly

 I’m a ‘troll’ because you’re embarrassed to admit you were just trying to say something politically-correct sounding that you don’t really mean? You say things like “almost infinite multiplicity of ideas and values that are essential to the character of this country” …. but you can’t actually name one. And by the way…. multiculturalism is not an “idea or value” that immigrants brought here. It’s an idea that brought immigrants here. The fact that you’ve made a very transparent attempt to deflect from your inability to answer the question by putting the onus on me to ‘make a list’ to support a claim I never made just shows how desperate you are to salvage your credibility. Sadly, it has the opposite effect.

Doug EarlDE

That all sounds very nice…. but you didn’t answer the question. What countries have provided immigrants to this great country, but whose people you believe have made no contribution?

 

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly

 Really? You think doubling down on a straw man fallacy bolsters your credibility? You’ve had four opportunities now to select a single example from the “infinite multiplicity” you insist supports your claim. And all you’ve done for the last two posts is try and deflect from the fact that you have nothing to offer because your opinion isn’t based on having actually thought about it. Like most liberals/’progressives’ – you choose opinions you think will enhance your self-image rather than cultivating a point of view based on reasoned analysis, objectivity and critical thinking.

 

Doug EarlDE

Nope, that’s not it.

Going to Getugly Going to Getugly

Very convincing counterargument.

Rebuttals of the Week! #3: ‘We might be wrong… but at least we’re nicer than you!’

When people who are capable of reason and critical thinking challenge opinions or claims made by ‘progressives’ – they tend to take the approach of presenting counterarguments that they know to be superior. They invoke evidence and logic… operating under the perfectly justifiable assumption that articulating an indisputably more accurate, more rational and better informed understanding of the issue in question will sway their opponent to give the credibility of their perspective fare consideration.

That never happens.

This is because ‘progressives’ do not prioritise or even care about truth. Their only motivation is to insure that concepts that appeal to their egos are privileged to the exclusion of all other considerations.

You will never see a ‘progressive’ say “that’s a good point” or  “I didn’t know that” or “I never thought about it that way”.  The only responses to superior arguments that you will get from ‘progressives’ are deflection, obfuscation, logical fallacies and a repetition of generic ‘progressive’ slogans and memes that they take for granted prove their point for them. They will drag thinking people down their bottomless rabbit hole of  ego self-preservation – literally to the point of absurdity – rather than concede to the possibility that maybe… just maybe they’ve simply accepted a fashionable position before thinking it through sufficiently.

With that in mind, I offer this short example of this very dynamic between a typically self-serving ‘progressive’ – ‘Da’ –  and  ‘BC’… a well informed, rational thinking person.

The context for this exchange is a piece in the National Post by columnist Barbara Kay,  called : How progressives perverted the study of history

Compare BC’s attempt to engage Da’ in debate about the issue with my approach of zeroing-in on Da’s inadequate thinking skills and how this disqualifies his opinion from serious consideration to begin with.

nvnvnvnvnv
Da…

At least progressives keep active by thinking and trying to improve things. Their counterpart, anti-progressives, just sit there and think society will improve and advance naturally, by itself. Well it doesn’t. Now and then it needs a push.

By just sitting there and staring out of the window an anti-progressive world stagnates and falls apart, just like the old Soviet Union did, and the Ottoman Emire before it.

The Middle East is full of anti-progressives and look at the mess it is in.

BC

Or look at Africa which was full of progressives that started Marxist marxist governments after de-colonialization. You had Libya, Egypt, the Congo, Angola, Sudan, and let’s not forget the shining star Zimbabwe.

FYI in the Middle East the governments of Syria and Iraq were marxist at one time too and the Iranians were notorious for nationalizing foreign property for the sake of the people.

And how could anyone forget Mao and Pol Pot and their views on reshaping society with their progressive visions of socialism? How many dead in China? 30 million? Maybe 50 million?

 
Da…
B C . Poor argument, and a baked one at that.

Not all progressives are alike. If you have progressivism coupled with democratic institutions you don’t get the ‘killing fields’ you refer to BC.

 

 And here is my approach….

The only thing ‘progressives’ are interested in improving is the sense of their own moral righteousness. People who are truly interested in the betterment of society are invested in objective ‘outcomes’… not the gratification they feel for supporting ‘processes’ that are marketed as the one acceptable choice for the morally enlightened.

You have demonstrated this yourself with your statement: “At least progressives keep active by thinking and trying to improve things”.

Your instinct here is to emphasize the moral grandeur of what ‘progressives’ are ‘trying’ to do… that it’s their lofty ambitions that matters. Whether ‘progressive’ ideas and policies actually do ‘improve things’ or contribute to the problems in the real world is a lesser concern that is left unscrutinized.

Da…

Anyway, I find most of the arguments about progressives in our society, of the Western kind, shallow and trivial. I know things aren’t perfect about progressives. But generally progressives of the Western kind have give us open societies in which we are free to express ourselves, exchange ideas and free to live pretty much as we like.

 

 “But generally progressives of the Western kind have give us open societies in which we are free to express ourselves, exchange ideas and free to live pretty much as we like.”

WHAT????? You can’t be serious. It’s the ‘progressive’ Left that are constantly calling for limitations on free expression. It is ‘progressives’ who advance notions of ‘hate-speech’. It’s the ‘progressive’ Left who drag comedians like Guy Earle and commentators like Mark Steyn off to ‘Human Rights Commissions’ because they feel offended by their comments. It’s ‘progressives’ who are shutting down speaking events by people like Christina Hoff Sommers, Milo Yiannopoulos, Warren Farrell, Janice Fiamengo and others because they challenge the absolutism of ‘progressive’ ideology.

‘Progressives’ do NOT “give us open societies in which we are free and live pretty much as we like”. They demand that everyone live the way THEY like…. otherwise they are more than happy to elicit the power of the state to force you to comply.

Rebuttals of the Week! #2: Not ‘morally superior’… just a much better person than everyone who disagrees with me.

The context of my debate with S’ – who describes herself as a “bleeding heart” and “leftie” – is UK columnist Brendan O’Neill’s recent article –We must have the freedom to hate: Hatred is an emotion, and the state has no business policing emotion. – and his appearance on the Australian panel show Q&A.

oneill

As is customary for tolerant, non-judgemental, deeply “compassionate” progressives – S’s initial comment is not a critique of O’Neill’s argument…. but a personal, harsh and definitive attack on his character:

Stacey NixonS… You may have the space to be hateful & small, if that is what you wish??? You do not have the right to make us be like you 💕

You gotta love that she included the little love-hearts at the end. Isn’t she adorable? It’s like she’s saying “You’re a thoroughly despicable, insignificant person – and the reason I’m entitled to judge you is because I’m so much better than you….. and I’m saying that with love“.  You see this blindness to hypocrisy and irony from ‘progressives’ over and over again. It’s a standard trait that you’ll see recurring in other Rebuttals of The Week.

Here was my response:

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly With that statement you have perfectly demonstrated the primary motivation for those who support ‘progressive-Left’ policies…. it’s the desire to think of yourself as morally superior. So anything that feeds that desire is reflexively supported. It has nothing to do with truth, reason or the application of critical thinking skills.

Stacey NixonS… Not morally superior, just no desire to compete. The truth is I am better than no one. The application of my skills is in listening, not talking. We seek enlightenment on different paths…but that is ok. You are interesting, I never understood those who separate fact from emotion – we would have some great chats!

Is it just me… or is she adopting a condescendingly superior tone here as she denies any sense of her own superiority?  “The application of my skills is in listening, not talking….We seek enlightenment on different paths…but that is ok……. You are interesting…” 

You are annoying.

The best part is that two responses after this one she acknowledges that she does in fact think of herself as superior…. and that she wants you to think of her that way as well.

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly  We could certainly have some great chats. One thing we would have to address is the necessity for separating objective ‘facts’ from subjective emotional experiences. It is actually very easy to understand why people separate facts from emotions. It’s because they are different things. 

Your emotions tell you something about you. ‘Facts’ tell you something about the world as it exists independent of you. This, I would argue, highlights the fundamental flaw in all ‘progressive’-Left thinking: Progressives do not distinguish between their subjective emotional experiences and objective reality. The word for this characteristic, of course, is narcissism.

Stacey NixonS…  Yeah, i don’t know. I mostly agree up until you say “This, I would argue”. I don’t argue, I discuss. I am admittedly a “bleeding heart” and “leftie”. This does not mean that I cannot separate fact from emotion. I just choose some facts/issues to apply my feelings to. Is there anything that is a known fact that you feel strongly about? This issue is important to me and I will apply my thoughts & feelings to it. I do not believe that when we live a whole life, that we segregate our feelings from our knowledge and experience. This is my choice and I would never wish to impose my views on others.

I am progressive-left. Unashamedly. I respect your clarity of thought, but do not covet it. It is not for me. You may call it narcissism, I see my words and actions as wishing for a better reality for all – not simply accepting but acting for a brighter future for all of us. To each his own 💕

Again with the little hearts. And did you see what she did with the use of my word ‘argue’? S’s priority here seems to be framing herself in the most flattering manner possible….not directly addressing what is being said to her. This is pretty standard fare for ‘progressives.’

Here’s the thing… I think these people are actually very petty, self-absorbed, angry and intolerant by nature. But those qualities don’t jibe with the way they would prefer to see themselves – with their personal ‘persona’. So they default to a classic psychological dynamic and they project those undesirable qualities outward onto convenient targets… papering over the truth with sentimental bromides, ‘progressive’ slogans and other superficial declarations designed to signal to the world and to themselves their desired self-image of enlightened benevolence.

The trouble is that their true nature hasn’t actually gone anywhere. So they are constantly reinforcing their virtue-signalling to keep acknowledgement of their undesired traits at bay.

Notice how often in my exchange with S’ she finds an opportunity to declare how high-minded, altruistic and magnanimous she finds herself. This is truly odd behaviour. But as you will notice in the series of ‘Rebuttals of the Week’… it is a common characteristic of ‘progressives’.

Here are the final three posts of my debate with S’:

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly  S’, you do in fact “argue”. You are ‘arguing’ your point. With respect, it is a bit disingenuous to imply that someone who uses the word ‘argue’ in this context is engaging in some kind of negative behaviour…. in contrast to yourself who is engaged in the more virtuous act of ‘discussion’.

It is like your initial comment – with which you implied that Brendan O’Neill is ‘hateful and small’… and that he doesn’t have the ‘right’ to ‘make’ you be like him. You seem to have a reflex when encountering opinion you disagree with to frame your response in terms of your opponent’s morally inferior status relative to your own. And as I said in my original response, this is a fundamental characteristic of people who embrace ‘progressive’-Left opinion and policies.

 

You say “I just choose some facts/issues to apply my feelings to.”  Exactly. You start with emotion… then you “choose facts” to validate that subjective impression. That’s the exact opposite to the process that people who privilege reason, rationality, objectivity and critical thinking engage. For these people, their focus is not on their personal, subjective impression about something (which,as I mentioned above only informs you about yourself) – but on what is objectively true. For them, the fact that our emotional reactions can occlude our capacity for impartiality and objectivity is a fundamental and active principle.

 

You say you respect my ‘clarity of thought’ but that it’s not for you. That is a startling confession…although I appreciate your candour. It is precisely this indifference to truth and clarity of thinking coupled with an impenetrable certainty that your conclusions are morally and intellectually unimpeachable that makes the ‘progressive-Left’ such a pernicious force in society.

This is the post where “S” admits she considers herself ‘morally superior’.

Stacey NixonS… Thanks for the free character assessment, I’ll be sure to take it on board based on the long time we have known each other and the fact that we have so much in common 😉.

From my first post I have expressed my opinions only. I did not”imply” that Brendan O’Neil was hateful & small. I flat out stated it as my opinion. If it differs from your opinion (which you still have not stated) big deal. People do not have to agree. Both opinions are still valid.

You claim I think of myself as morally superior, perhaps I do. I would hope others also think my world views to be more considered & compassionate than some “hateful & small” people, hence my original post. When I speak of my opinions they are soaked in emotion. Over time & with experience I have applied reason & objectivity. But, this is facebook not Rhetoric & Logic 101. If we want people to care about the world, build communities that thrive & leave the world better than we found it, people need to be emotionally invested. Walk in another man’s shoes for a day & your “truth” will be very different.

Here comes another opinion, you’ll love it: Only the privileged can sit in their tower & apply reason and objectivity to another’s experience. Pernicious? Bit strong hey? Again, only my opinion

Going to GetuglyGoing to Getugly I’m sorry if you perceived something as an unsolicited character assessment. I’m not sure what you are referring to. What I wrote was actually just observation of specific things you have written. As you point out, I am guilty of using the word ‘imply’ when referring to your first post. I deliberately chose that word because I thought it was more tactful than simply highlighting that you indulged in fallacious ad hominem rather than presenting a valid perspective based on reason or evidence. 

But to your credit, you have again been very forthcoming by admitting that your intention was simply to broadcast your assessment of your own moral superiority and to hopefully elicit validation from an audience: “You claim I think of myself as morally superior, perhaps I do. I would hope others also think my world views to be more considered & compassionate than some “hateful & small” people, hence my original post.”

Your comment that “this is facebook not Rhetoric & Logic 101” is a cop-out. You are commenting on the Facebook page of a major current affairs program discussing a very serious topic and focusing on the perspective of a controversial public pundit of some international renown. It isn’t a cat video. 

Of your own free will, you have posted a fairly vicious personal attack on this individual which you felt no compulsion to support in any way…. while assuming yourself to be the embodiment of some higher moral and ethical ideal. This notion that you get to choose when the standards of reasoned commentary and rational debate can be abandoned in favour of self-congratulatory posturing and name-calling is difficult to take seriously. You write: “Walk in another man’s shoes for a day & your “truth” will be very different”. Did you bother trying on Brendan O’Neill’s shoes before you offered up such an ugly, public condemnation of his character? I think not. 

Furthermore, inserting ‘your’ in front of the world ‘truth’ is insipid. “Truth” pre-exists our opinions about it. Only narcissists think in terms of ‘my truth’ and ‘your truth’. 

You referred to the following statement as “your opinion” : “Only the privileged can sit in their tower & apply reason and objectivity to another’s experience.” When people default to invoking fashionable terms and memes like “privileged” instead of presenting a coherent argument of their own… it’s not so much ‘your’ opinion as it is a prepackaged, ‘progressive’ talking-point that you have merely adopted and are now parroting. As for the sentiment behind that statement – that reason and objectivity are only available and useful to the tower-inhabiting ‘privileged’ (by which I think it’s safe to assume you mean ‘white men’ in particular) – well, that’s just a little bit racist, classist and sexist. 

You are entitled to that opinion of course. But I fail to see how the belief that people belonging to certain ethnic backgrounds, a particular gender or lower socioeconomic positions are intrinsically incapable of applying reason to this or any other issue represents a higher level of moral or ethical judgement. You ask if my use of the word ‘pernicious’ is too strong to describe the influence of the ‘progressive’ ideology you exemplify –  which is characterized by an indifference to truth and clarity of thinking coupled with an impenetrable certainty that your conclusions are morally and intellectually unimpeachable. 

The answer is no. Not too strong in the least.

Rebuttals of the Week! #1… Definition of a ‘white supremacist’: anyone who wins an argument with a ‘progressive’.

Political correctness is not designed to counter bigotry and prejudice. It is used by people who identify with the ‘progressive Left’ as cover to justify their bigotry and prejudice.

Scott Reid’s fantastically hypocritical essay in the Ottawa Citizen –  ‘It’s time to defend political correctness‘ –  is a great example of this.

sdsa

The first half is all about his redemption from a sinful past: He confesses that along with his family and friends, he used to casually direct mean epithets and apply derogatory labels towards people who were not like him in some way – until some road to Damascus moment enabled him to recognize how profoundly wrong he was to engage in such contemptible behaviour.

The second half of the essay is comprised of Reid calling people names and labelling anyone who doesn’t share his political views as racist, bigoted, vulgar, stupid, inconsiderate, ignorant – and deliberately mischaracterizing Donald Trump’s statements in order to prop-up his thesis.

Why are these people always completely blind to their self-contradiction and hypocrisy?

Appalling stuff. But very useful for illustrating precisely why it is time to stop treating the perspective of the ‘progressive’ Left as if it is worthy of being taken seriously.

Even more enlightening are the responses that Reid’s column elicited from folks who share his ‘progressive’ philosophy….. which essentially amounts to giving yourself permission to indulge in nasty character traits you condemn in everyone else.

See for yourself and check out how they react to having their terrible reasoning pointed out to them. ‘Jo’ starts it off…. but it’s ‘G’ who get’s into it:

Jo

In other words, the “good old days” we’re only good if you were a white, Christian male. I’m glad we have moved past that and have no desire to go back, unlike many on the right who dream deluded dreams of those racist, sexist, homophobic times.

Going to Getugly

You perfectly illustrate the hypocrisy and total lack of self-awareness that defines the ‘progressive’ Left: The assumption that expressing unashamed bigotry magically turns into a virtue when YOU do it.

G…

How is it bigoted to observe the privilege that’s associated with being a white Christian male?

Going to Getugly

How is it bigoted to single out a whole segment of society strictly by their race and their gender and label them as the problem?

The fact that you ask that question is proof that the conditioning that has been occurring has completely destroyed the capacity for reason, critical thinking and rationality in some people.

G…

Because white supremacy and patriarchy are the architects of Western culture at the expense of non-white peoples and women for as long as we have written history? Wow that question was easy.

G…

Guess what, white males aren’t the problem unless they refuse to see the problem. Your move.

 

Exactly my point. So for you, bigotry isn’t wrong in ‘principle’. In fact, you’re all in favour of singling out people for vilification by race and gender if the ideology you have adopted has marked that race and gender as an acceptable target. Any other fashionable trends from the 1930’s that you admire? Big Marlene Dietrich fan, are you?

The problem here is that too many people have been conditioned to believe that reflexively repeating slogans and memes verbatim that have been drilled into them by the ‘progressive’ establishment is the equivalent of insight and thinking. They assume that merely writing words they’ve been taught to parrot, like ‘patriarchy’, ‘white supremacy’ and ‘privilege’ amounts to having made an argument or having proven an opinion.

Are you not embarrassed to identify yourself as one of the people so susceptible to group-think by parroting these generic clichés and slogans?

And yes, white men are the architects of Western civilization. The first civilization to abolish slavery. To conceive and entrench the notion of representational democracy, universal human rights and freedom of speech. To embrace multiculturalism and pluralism. To recognize the equality of rights of women, homosexuals, religious affiliations, classes, races and ethnicity. To generate the scientific and technological revolutions that have extended the human lifespan, drastically lowered infant mortality, eliminated countless fatal and crippling diseases, connected the world through intercontinental travel and global telecommunications – and has generally provided the comfort, stability, freedom and means for a couple of generations of self-involved, spoiled posers who are the beneficiaries of all of this to bleat their vacuous and intellectually barren slogans about how white men and the civilization they have created are nothing but a curse on humanity.

G…

Calling a demographic privileged is not being bigoted against that demographic. Having your feelings hurt by uncomfortable truths isn’t oppression. Stop playing ‘poor white man’ and grow up.

G…

As for trends from the 1930s, I’m rather a fan of art deco!

This is another defining characteristic of the ‘progressive’ Left – when their perspective is shown to them to be flawed and hypocritical, they try to save credibility by redefining words, concepts and even the terms of the discussion.

So because you have found yourself in the awkward position of endorsing singling out people by race and gender for social vilification – the very definition of bigotry… you’ve decided to insert the term “demographic” in the hope that this will distract somewhat from the unflattering implications of your position. The only reason you would try this tactic , is because you recognize that by uncritically adopting these fashionable opinions, you have unwittingly endorsed an ideology that promotes bigotry. But because the ‘progressive’ establishment has cultivated the perception that this particular ‘demographic’ is deserving of collective social vilification, people have bought into the idea as a means to identify themselves as belonging to the morally righteous, ‘right-thinking’ group.

In the context of nostalgia for 1930’s Germany…. do you think the Jewish business class could have been labelled a ‘privileged demographic’?

G…

>white supremacist attempts to link criticism of white supremacy with Nazism

Ooooookay, we’re WAY down the rabbit hole here.

Going to Getugly

Today you have provided a master-class in the predictable, robotic thinking-patterns and default responses that are definitive of the ‘progressive’ Left. Here you’ve demonstrated the classic ‘progressive’ response to having your argument defeated by reason – call the other person a racist! Once again, more proof that there is absolutely no need for thinking people to treat the ‘progressive’Left as if their perspective was worthy of being taken seriously.

G…

Okay try this one; I will replace two phrases in my first post, and retain your response. The structure of my argument is unchanged, and your response makes as much sense now as it did then:

Me: “How is it bigoted to observe the POVERTY that’s associated with being a BLACK WOMAN?”

You: “How is it bigoted to single out a whole segment of society strictly by their race and their gender and label them as the problem?

“The fact that you ask that question is proof that the conditioning that has been occurring has completely destroyed the capacity for reason, critical thinking and rationality in some people.”

Looks pretty ridiculous like that, doesn’t it! Obviously the black woman isn’t the problem, but her poverty is. Likewise in my original reply, the white male isn’t problem, but his privilege is. The only difference is that the black woman doesn’t benefit from her poverty, whereas the white man does benefit from his privilege.

 

Going to Getugly

Okay. Let me get this straight… so for the last couple of hours you’ve been trying to defend the statement that you made at the beginning of this. You’ve failed at that… so now you want to change that point into a completely new context…. while insisting against all logic the “structure of my argument is unchanged”.
Do you think wanting to reword your statement at this point in the conversation strengthens the credibility of your position or weakens it? 

Your rewording is this: “How is it bigoted to observe the POVERTY that’s associated with being a BLACK WOMAN?”

Let me take a moment to savour the delicious irony of presenting this reworking of your initial point. Because I think it’s safe to say that a lot of black people would consider that to be quite an offensive and yes….bigoted, statement. The explicit link you have drawn here is that if you are a black woman… you are poor. Some might call that a racial stereotype. AND a sexist stereotype.I think I sense another rewording in the making.

But this alternative version to your original statement is actually extremely helpful. It provides the perfect contrast for revealing the pernicious intent and effect of the social acceptance of the ‘white male privilege’ concept. Because to the ‘progressive’/Left mindset, the ‘black woman’ in poverty is a victim. But to that same mindset, the ‘privileged’ white man – is the culprit.

As you acknowledged – THAT’S the difference.

And as I say, the intent and the ultimate effect of dispersing this concept in society is to socialize people into identifying white men and white ‘maleness’ as the enemy. An enemy so intrinsically loathsome that social vilification and collective bigotry directed towards them is not just condoned and encouraged – but is a signal that you qualify for inclusion among the morally superior class because you conform to what they have deemed to be the ‘right’ way to think.

G…

Once more for the cheap seats:It’s not a slur to say someone has privilege. Your entire tirade is predicated on nothing. I don’t know if you actually don’t understand, or if you’re just trolling.

Going to Getugly

I never said it was slur to say someone has privilege. I said it is bigotry to single out a particular segment of the population for social vilification based on their race and gender.

It IS a slur however to call someone a “white supremacist” simply because he doesn’t share your poorly thought out, self-contradictory, un-ethical and badly argued opinion. Which is what you did.

 

G…

Michael, you can’t get as big a chub as you did from the White Man’s Burden without being a white supremacist. Sorry dude.Ah look, a standard debating tactic of ‘conservatives’: not knowing what you’re talking about!

Going to Getugly

 Yes, well… I think it’s pretty clear you have exhausted the little capacity you had for defending your ideas like a thinking adult.