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Hunter threatens to pull fed funds from Columbia
Posted by: McQ on Tuesday, September 25, 2007

You know, sometimes you wonder where these guys get their understanding of what their job entails:
Earlier today, Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) said in a statement that if Columbia University President Lee Bollinger “follows through with this hosting of the leader of Iran, I will move in Congress to cut off every single type of Federal Funding to Columbia University.”
Look, I've outlined my objections to the Ahmadinejad appearance. And, frankly, I believe it isn't the role of the federal government to be subsidizing universities which have endowment funds larger than the GDP of most of the world's countries (or, for that matter, subsidizing any universities at all). But I also don't see it as the role of government to monitor and "punish" those who don't please them politically.

Not. Their. Job.

But a darn good illustration of the authoritarian streak that runs through many of them and their willingness to use the federal government in ways never envisioned by the founders, that's for sure.
 
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
I applaud this smackdown of Republican-based nonsense. Good work.
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
This is ridiculous.
 
Written By: Joel C.
URL: http://
Eh. This one isn’t such a close call.

I didn’t care that the Columbia crowd, with its radical chic credentials on the line, sponsored the little Iranian creep.

But I have no problem with removing their federal funding for it, either, not that Duncan’s proposal will get anywhere.

Nothing wrong with proposing it, however.

Simply on the basis that the little creep is responsible for killing our troops in Iraq right now.

I don’t think that anyone would approve of making Sharon Tate’s family pay for an appearance by Charles Manson.

That’s before you get to the "free speech" issue. And there, actions speak louder than words, so using Columbia as a forum to deny his regime’s actions isn’t really "free speech." It’s more along the lines of the murderer caught on tape pleading "not guilty" and then taking the stand in his own defense and saying that’s "not me" on the tape, when it couldn’t be anyone else.

I’d vote with Hunter on this one, and tell the Columbia people that they can get money for their radical chic indulgence elsewhere. I’m sure the Iranians will be happy to pay for it, now. Let Columbia have the legacy it has earned.
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
Yup.

This is kind of self-defeating for Hunter. He could introduce legislation limiting heads of terrorist supporting states to the environs of the U.N., or calling for automatic censure and condemnation of groups that promote their appearance. Instead he looks like a whinging little bully-boy.

It’s very tempting to ride that old outrage train, but hard to do without appearing immature. Now if he threatened to cut off funding for not allowing ROTC, that would be a different matter, with a more presentable case.
 
Written By: Uncle Pinky
URL: http://
Good idea, wrong reason.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
The Venezuelan leader, who is expecting a visit from Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad later this week, said he spoke by phone with the Iranian leader on Monday after his tense showdown at Columbia University in New York.

"I congratulate him, in the name of the Venezuelan people, before a new aggression of the U.S. empire," Chavez said, adding that it seemed Ahmadinejad was the subject of "an ambush."
Proof positive that Columbia is part of the VRWC. LOL
 
Written By: Neo
URL: http://
If he wanted to do it, try doing it because they won’t allow ROTC, this is one of the more stupid reasons I can think of right off hand.

I don’t suppose Erbie will show up and applaud this post (well, he might now...heh).
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
And Dave - bravo for doing what you said you’d do.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Accreditation comes from the Government as well as money. So the government already is screwing it up. Its why the turds who run Columbia can create the culture where they thought it was cool to host the nutjob.

Once you strongly regulate one aspect of something, you will soon need to regulate them all.
 
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
Hunter is almost there - pull ALL Federal funding from ALL universities, and abolish the Department of Education in the process.
 
Written By: Horatio
URL: http://
Isn’t Columbia a private institution? Why are they receiving federal money? Maybe the taxpayers should be allowed to decide how Columbia spends their money... or just decide that they can’t have their money in the first place.
 
Written By: jows
URL: http://
Not. Their. Job.
Well, to the extent the feds fund the place, they have a say. That’s the way it works.

The right answer is for the feds to stop the funding. For whatever reason.

 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Cheers.
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
When you’re a creature of the government you should expect to bend to the government’s will.
 
Written By: Dave Schuler
URL: http://www.theglitteringeye.com
I’m going to have to side with Martin on this one, I think.
Ultimately, the question of whether are not Federal funding for such places is good or bad, is an academic one, pardon the pun. I happen to think of a bad one. Mostly, because I want the Federal government out of the business of education. Therefore, I wouldn’t object to Federal funding being pulled from all schools, k-12,as well as colleges and universities. Regardless what you or I think of it, however, it exists. Until such time as it doesn’t exist, arguing about it’s good or bad, seems to me a moot argument.

That said, such funding exists at the pleasure of those with the purse strings. Who, in turn, serve at the pleasure of the electorate. I doubt you’re going to find many people, not among the hardcore left who would disapprove of the removal of such Federal funding from schools who would sponsor the little creep. Most people don’t want their hard earned dollars , however appropriated by the government, to be going forward sponsorship of such an individual. In that sense, it could be suggested easily that Mr. Hunter is simply responding to the wishes of the people. I’m not sure that I want to stand against someone who is responding to the electorates wishes, for a change.

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
McQ, thanks for recognizing that the authoritarian streak that comes with governmental power affects the right and left both.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Well, there’s the rub, isn’t it, Scott?

Usually, complaints about the of an "authoritarian streak" are directed at someone acting against the wishes of the people. As it is, he is not. He is, right or wrong, responding to what he sees (Correctly, I think) as the will of the people to Disassociate their tax money from such an organization as would pull something like Columbia did.

We can certainly discuss whether such a response was correct or incorrect. There’s a lot of room there for discussion. But don’t tell me this nonsense about how he’s doing it simply because he has the authority to do so, and he feels like it. It doesn’t wash.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
No, bithead, authoritarians often are populists, who come to power to do things the people want, like take from the rich to give to the poor, or appeal to the masses. Authoritarians are people who use governmental power to force individuals to act a particular way. If the ’people want’ the government to take your property because you’re wealthy, it’s still an authoritarian abuse of power by the government to do so.

Ever hear the phrase ’tyranny of the majority?’
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Boris Erb writes:
authoritarians often are populists, who come to power to do things the people want, like take from the rich to give to the poor,
So, Boris, is this your way of saying that you’re no longer an open advocate of "radical democracy"? Your transitions are so, uh, seamless. One day it’s "anti-statist socialism" and radical democracy, the next its "left libertarianism," then before you know it, it’s "pragmatic libertarianism."

It is true that you seem content to work the Gramscian front of Marxism these days. Are you focusing on cultural destruction, leaving the heavy-lifting on the economic front to, say, the Clintons? You’ve adapted your coloration for a libertarian blog, where you’ll find sympathy for your Gramscian tune. Right?
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
Sure have.
Most recently, in the aftermath of Florida, 2000. Previous to that, in December of 94.

But I digress... are the elected NOT supopsed to represent the interests of the people who elected them?

Authoritarians are people who use governmental power to force individuals to act a particular way.
You’ve just invalidated law as a concept. Not A law... ALL law.
You sure that’s the way you want to describe this?
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
Bithead, when you have to take my post out of context and interpret a snippet in a way obviously not intended, you’ve admitted you lost the debate.

Bottom line: just because the people want a government to do something doesn’t remove the possibility the action is authoritarian.

Moreover, the claim made by McQ, which I seconded, was that this represents an "authoritarian streak." I appreciated the recognition (which you apparently haven’t made, given your partisan world view) that such a streak runs on both sides of the aisle.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
interpret a snippet in a way obviously not intended
Perhaps you made a statement without really thinking about its meaning. You tend to do that a lot, so you should consider it a likely explanation.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Boris Erb writes:
Bithead, when you have to take my post out of context and interpret a snippet in a way obviously not intended, you’ve admitted you lost the debate.
Well, in that case, Boris, is Castro still "better than Batista"?
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
About Boris Erb complaining about Eric taking his statement out of context, JWG writes:
Perhaps you made a statement without really thinking about its meaning. You tend to do that a lot,
Boris spends his life trying to evade context.
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
JWG stole my fire on this one.
My, My, Erb... you DO tend to get into these logical scrapes with soem degree of regularity, don’t you?
Bithead, when you have to take my post out of context and interpret
a snippet in a way obviously not intended, you’ve admitted you lost the debate
Not at all. Indeed, with you, this kind of response usualy translates as ’oops, I hadn’t thought of that."

It means you’re mouthing a particular argument because it SOUNDS good. Trouble is, you seldom think it all the way through. I can’t imagine how your students deal with it, frankly.

Erb, don’t blame ME for YOUR shortcomings. Just because you’ve not thought through the consequences of your argument does NOT mean that I’ve ’twisted your words".
You said:
Authoritarians are people who use governmental power to force individuals to act a particular way.
That is exactly what law and government do. Are you now an anarchist, or did you screw up your own argument, again?
Moreover, the claim made by McQ, which I seconded, was that this represents an "authoritarian streak." I appreciated the recognition (which you apparently haven’t made, given your partisan world view) that such a streak runs on both sides of the aisle.
Actually, that’s not true, either. If you’ve been reading me for any length of time, you know I hold no truck with Hunter on many issues. This particular case i a lot more pixelated than you make out, however.

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
McQ, thanks for recognizing that the authoritarian streak that comes with governmental power affects the right and left both.
I fail to see how it’s authoritarian. We are talking about money the government provides, right?

If they send in the tanks, or send the FBI to arrest private contributers, that’s another thing. But cutting off the money flow isn’t authoritarian.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
I hope I am not the only one who notices this, but Erb could say the exact same thing as someone else, and get the opposite response of anyone that says it.

This is what it looks like to me, in simulation.

Anonymous blogger 1...
"George Bush and the Republicans are spending like drunken sailors"

Anonymous Blogger 2... "They’re not real conservatives"

Anonymous blogger 3...
"George Bush and the Republicans are spending like drunken sailors"

Anonymous Blogger 4... "They’re not real conservatives"


Anonymous blogger 5...
"George Bush and the Republicans are spending like drunken sailors"

Anonymous Blogger 6... "They’re not real conservatives"

Anonymous blogger 7...
"George Bush and the Republicans are spending like drunken sailors"

Anonymous Blogger 8... "They’re not real conservatives"

Anonymous blogger 9...
"George Bush and the Republicans are spending like drunken sailors"

Anonymous Blogger 10... "They’re not real conservatives"

Erb...
"George Bush and the Republicans are spending like drunken sailors"

Anonymous Blogger 11...
"Boris Communist Erb, you don’t know what you’re talking about, and your choice of metaphors proves that you obviously hate the military and America"

I showed someone the first post Erb made on a topic, and it was an innocuous comment, and then I said we’ll look back in 4 hours, and I guarantee that people who would normally ignore such an innocuos comment will go batsh*t as if he just endorsed OJ for President... and we got a good laugh when it worked out just that way.

I’m just sayin’....

McQ...
But a darn good illustration of the authoritarian streak that runs through many of them and their willingness to use the federal government in ways never envisioned by the founders, that’s for sure.
Erb...
McQ, thanks for recognizing that the authoritarian streak that comes with governmental power affects the right and left both.
 
Written By: Captin Sarcastic
URL: http://
I hope I am not the only one who notices this, but Erb could say the exact same thing as someone else, and get the opposite response of anyone that says it.
The likely reason is very few people think he actually believes what he says. Or, for that matter, knows what he’s talking about.

Other people may very well be wrong, but they generally don’t change their position every fifteen minutes, depending on their arguing with. Erb does this is as matter of routine. . Unfortunately for him, he’s forced by this ever changing perspective to create arguments on the fly, something which he is clearly unqualified to do.
If they send in the tanks, or send the FBI to arrest private contributers, that’s another thing. But cutting off the money flow isn’t authoritarian
you know, Don, that’s a good point, and one I hadn’t thought of before. But you’re right; lack of funding, in a given area would be respecting a lack of authority in that given area. I was always given to believe that authoritarianism , in the strictest sense was the execution of a positive action toward a goal. Not funding something, is a negative action. Gotta think that one for a bit.

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
The likely reason is very few people think he actually believes what he says.


Oh, a mind reading thing.

Why not just take people at their word, it’s all there is in the blogosphere. I don’t get the point of arguing with someone who types words I agree because i don’t think he means it.

If I said I thought you were correct on most issues, would you take issue with me? (believing that I were lying through my teeth)
But you’re right; lack of funding, in a given area would be respecting a lack of authority in that given area.

Gotta think that one for a bit.
Removing all funding for all universities because you disagree with government involvement in that business is would be a sound linertarian position, but removing funding for ONE university because you don’t like who they allowed to speak would be authoritarian.

Draw the scenario out to it’s logical conclusion if this were allowed to happen...

Today Columbia, tomorrow Berkeley, next week every university that Duncan Hunter didn’t approve of, until only Hunter approved universities that have the right point of view can be funded.

That’s not us.

Cap
 
Written By: Captin Sarcastic
URL: http://
"Authoritarians are people who use governmental power to force individuals to act a particular way."

*sigh*

Much as it distresses me, I must agree with capt. Sarcastic on this one point. This seems to me to be a reasonable characterization of authoritarian. It does strike me as odd that what I assume are libertarians would object to this because governments also do it. How about the statement ’gangsters are people who use guns to intimidate and sometimes kill people’. Does this mean that our police and military are gangsters?
I know that there is so much material to work with that it can get confusing, but let’s try to maintain.

Now I need a drink.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
"Why not just take people at their word,"

I, and I am sure there are also others, do. That is one reason I think that, as we say down home, "they’s sumthin wrong wit dat boy".
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
"they’s sumthin wrong wit dat boy".
Sure, because you have an imagined image of me that is completely different than what I am. To protect that fantasy (i.e., some leftist elitist professor that fits the caricatures you have of such a person) you refuse to actually engage in real discussion, and Bithead goes as far as saying I don’t believe what I post and blog. So smitten you are with your imagined image that if my arguments and ideas don’t fit, then they are dismissed as somehow not real. Somehow I would blog and argue against my true beliefs out of some desire to what, make you think I’m something I’m not? You’re so important to me that I’ll publicly take stands that I don’t believe just to try to fool you?

No, I’m far more libertarian than "leftist" though that libertarianism has a real skepticism of modern so-called capitalism which is a partnership of business and government. My mode of libertarianism isn’t dogmatic/ideological, and has a traditional distrust of military force and its use in anything but self-defense. You prefer to paint me as a leftist because that’s convenient for your personal stereotypes. That’s fine — do what you need for your own psychological state. But you’re not dealing with or even accepting reality. You find it more convenient to deal with your imagined image.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
How about the statement ’gangsters are people who use guns to intimidate and sometimes kill people’. Does this mean that our police and military are gangsters?
Then perhaps the given definition of "gangsters" is not well thought out if it can’t differentiate between the them.

Is it too much to ask for a Ph.D. in political science to give a definition of "authoritarian" that doesn’t include the entire government?

I didn’t realize Erb was above being challenged on a weak definition within his chosen field of expertise.

Given his proclivity to challenge others to admit error while touting his own corrective superiority, I would think he would be more than happy to acknowledge his definition was too broad and offer to correct it.

Instead, he declares the challenge as proof of his superior knowledge ("you’ve admitted you lost the debate").

Do not chellenge The Erb — for he knows what he means even if his words say something different.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Oh, a mind reading thing.


No. A genuine understanding, rather, based on a long headache filled history.
Why not just take people at their word,
In Erb’s case, same answer.
Sure, because you have an imagined image of me that is completely different than what I am
Is a little common sense, for crying out loud. What on earth would he have to judge you by, other than what you write, for pity’s sake? You see, you want everybody to make judgments based on what you’ve written in the last fifteen minutes. It doesn’t work that way. People remember what you write over time. That’s your biggest problem, at the moment.

Is it too much to ask for a Ph.D. in political science to give a definition of "authoritarian" that doesn’t include the entire government?
That rather depends on who you ask, I suppose. I should point out, that the reason I asked about him being an anarchist, is that this is probably the easiest group of people to point at, when one wants people who can’t make that distinction.

Here lies the problem; there’s a lot of people who call themselves libertarian, who can’t make that distinction, either. Mostly, that’s because they’re still trying to work out in their own minds what the proper role of government is. (As, dare I say it, most of us are. )

You prefer to paint me as a leftist because that’s convenient for your personal stereotypes
No, Erb... You get painted that, because it most closely describes what you write. Welcome to "words mean things", the "ideas have consequences" edition.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
Boris Erb responds to timactual’s diagnosis of him:
"they’s sumthin wrong wit dat boy".

Sure, because you have an imagined image of me that is completely different than what I am.
You don’t leave much to the imagination, Boris. Your sing-song platitudes, relentless anti-American positions, academic see-sawing, outright lying, and general lack of knowledge of your own field pretty much define what you are.

And I bet your students absolutely detest you, save for those who came to university prepared only to play paddy-cake.
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
I don’t know about all this, but it seems to me that you people are obsessed with Erb, and many of you turn into trolls whenever he posts.

You will ignore the larger points to argue minutia with Erb.

Is it how you gain acceptance around here, a right of passage, slay the Erb and get your kudos?

If he was as inconsequential as you all seem to assert, ad nauseum, you’d think you wouldn’t find it so important to parse every word he posts.

It’s just kind of creepy is all I’m saying
 
Written By: Captin Sarcastic
URL: http://
slay the Erb
Heh, you say that as if it’s an easy thing!
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Is it too much to ask for a Ph.D. in political science to give a definition of "authoritarian" that doesn’t include the entire government?
Note what my point was: A government may still be authoritarian if it sometimes gives ’the people’ (I presume the majority) what they want. Many populist authoritarians have ruled (Napolean, Peron, Vargas, etc.). Hitler also had many popular programs.

Definitionally, authoritarian regimes control their population (usually through a state, but you can also have authoritarian organizations) by demanding obedience to the state and enforcing that obedience through repression. Whole chapters can be written about different types of regimes (strong personality, military dictatorship, populist authoritarianism, etc.)

What McQ pointed out, and what I agreed with, is that many politicians exercise an authoritarian streak, a desire to use the power of the state to punish those who violate what they want to see, or otherwise control what people do. That’s why we’ve seen creeping regulation into almost every aspect of our lives.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
"(i.e., some leftist elitist professor that fits the caricatures you have of such a person)"

Wrong, of course. That is much too simplistic, and political idealogy is irrelevant. That is your caricature. I have gone into some detail over a long period of time expressing my opinion/diagnosis of you, and how and why I reached them, which you, as usual, ignore , distort, and misinterpret. To use your words,

" So smitten you are with your imagined image...."

In your case it is both the imagined images of yourself and of those who disagree with you.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
It’s just kind of creepy is all I’m saying
Then turn the channel.
you turn into trolls whenever he posts
For me it started when he argued that the current American military is the "most murderous" in American history and offered multiple pieces of "fact" that were verifiably wrong. Since his M.O. hasn’t changed since that first encounter, I find it instructional and entertaining to make sure any additional information he posts is accurate (hence, my waiting for him to pay up on his wager).

However, I truly fail to see how Erb was unfairly or unreasonably challenged in this thread.
1) A few people including Bithead and Martin came in with disagreements to McQ’s points.
2) Erb entered after and supported McQ’s "authoritarian" point
3) Bithead disagreed with Erb’s characterization of "authoritarian" just as he did with McQ.

*** At this point, Captin Sarcastic’s point ["Erb could say the exact same thing as someone else, and get the opposite response"] is CLEARLY INCORRECT since Bithead had already disagreed with McQ.

4) Erb returned with an overgeneralized definition for "authoritarian".
5) He was challenged on the definition.
6) Rather than clarify his definition, Erb accused Bithead of being unfair, even though Bithead used Erb’s exact definition.
7) Erb is challenged for avoiding his own words (par for the course) rather than clarifying his statement [though that has since changed and Erb has made himself more clear].
8) Captin Sarcastic, who misrepresents the challenge against Erb as being the opposite to McQ, thinks it’s creepy.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
"I didn’t realize Erb was above being challenged on a weak definition within his chosen field of expertise."

Since the subject of the comment in question was Authoritarians, I think that is a serviceable definition. If you wish to take the sentence out of that context, and change the subject to governments in general, then I think you would be guilty of the same thing Erb is often castigated for. This is, after all, a casual forum, not some meeting of a professional society. Some leeway is in order.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Jumpin Jeebus. I just went back and reread some of the comments and saw that my last was eerily similar to one of Erb’s. It is to gag.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Since the subject of the comment in question was Authoritarians, I think that is a serviceable definition. If you wish to take the sentence out of that context, and change the subject to governments in general
Well, since the subject was more specifically about a federal lawmaker and presidential candidate acting as an authoritarian, I believe the context MUST include the government.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
JWG:

You’ve broken the code. That’s at precisely. The comment was not out of context, it is simply a logical extension of the principle involved. And not much of an extension, at that, since as you point out we are dealing with governmental power in the form of Mr. Hunter at the moment.



Erb immediately places a negative connotation on authority itself. This is particularly true in the wording that he chose, which specifically echoes the very operational function of government. His definition, thereby, is not a valid one, unless he is going to hold all government in a negative connotation. Of course, if he’s going to do that, what he’s really doing is arguing against the continuance of his own job.

His inability to separate the two situations, solidifies my point that he really hasn’t thought this thing through.








 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
For me it started when he argued that the current American military is the "most murderous" in American history and offered multiple pieces of "fact" that were verifiably wrong
Where did I claim that?
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
I hope I am not the only one who notices this, but Erb could say the exact same thing as someone else, and get the opposite response of anyone that says it.
You know, the more I look at this the more I am convinced you just proved the exact opposite.

Feel free to point out any comment in which your statement was true. It seems to me that everyone was entirely consistent with their treatment of supporting and opposing views.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Scott Erb:
I suspect [Seymour Hersh] may well be right that there is more murder and killing of innocents in this war than past American wars.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Also, McQ:
And I damn sure dispute Mr. Seymour Hersh’s claim that "there has never been an [American] army as violent and murderous as our army has been in Iraq", mainly because I don’t think he knows what the hell he’s talking about.
Erb:
The truth hurts, doesn’t it?
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Well, "I suspect Seymour Herrsh may be right that there are more murder and killing of innocents" is different than explicitly calling this the "most murderous military" in American history. "I suspect may be right" is different than "it is." Moreover, the killing of innocents includes cases (the vast majority) of mistaken identity at check points, etc. There have been a lot of innocents killed that way over four years.

But this is a clear example. You try to find anything I say and parse it and find fault with it. Yet you have no problem asserting that I said this is "the most murderous military" in American history with "I suspect someone may be right" with a claim about murder and the killing of innocents. One states knowledge and certainty, the other expresses openness to the possibility that someone making a charge MIGHT be right. Two very different things.

I do give you credit for posting it though, even though it clearly said something different.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Scott, I suspect you are trying to escape the onus for your unfortunate appearance of having agreed with Hersh’s assessment that our current military is a murderous collection of troops unparallelled in our nation’s history.

I suspect ’a lot’ is an inflation of the actual numbers involved in checkpoint accidental shootings, and suspect your choice of the word ’vast’ implies numbers far larger than is warranted by actual numbers from the incidents.

I suspect there is a difference between the meaning of the words ’murder’ and ’killing’, especially if you suspect the shootings at the checkpoints were in fact accidental.

I suspect the difference between "I suspect [Seymour Hersh] may well be right..." and "I think [Seymour Hersh] is right..." is not as clear to most people who read your original statement as you think.
Also, McQ:
And I damn sure dispute Mr. Seymour Hersh’s claim that "there has never been an [American] army as violent and murderous as our army has been in Iraq", mainly because I don’t think he knows what the hell he’s talking about.
Erb:
The truth hurts, doesn’t it?
And, finally, I suspect that last recorded, documented exchange, indicates you have gone beyond what you think ’might’ be true and have accepted Hersh’s statement as truth.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
I stated:
[Erb] argued that the current American military is the "most murderous" in American history and offered multiple pieces of "fact" that were verifiably wrong.
I made that statement based on you saying you believed Hersh’s claim was the truth (at least twice) and giving erroneous facts to support it.

You just said:
[It’s] different than explicitly calling this the "most murderous military" in American history
I never said you explicitly called it so. You made arguments to support Hersh’s original statement. In any case, the words and your style of argument were the first impression you made on this blog. You’ve generally been less inflammatory since then, but as we can see your style hasn’t changed. As long as one of your students might have the opportunity to see through your Erb Logic, I’ll be sure to challenge your falsehoods (whether it creeps the Cap out or not).
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
"Erb immediately places a negative connotation on authority itself."

Well, then I too am guilty, as I think negatively of authority. The phrase ’necessary evil’ comes to mind. Since I am under the impression that this is more or less a libertarian oriented site, do I take it correctly then that libertarians do not place a negative connotation on governmental authority? I also suspect, if you are correct about Erb’s position, that you may have found the only possible thing that Erb and Billy Beck may have in common.
...............
........

" Well, "I suspect Seymour Herrsh may be right..."
"..even though it clearly said something different..."
"The truth hurts, doesn’t it?"

Jeez. I give up. If Erb were a career criminal(now, now,boys!) he would provide a full time lifetime career for a defense lawyer.
That last phrase is particularly ironic.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
From now on I will state, "I suspect Billy Beck may be right that Erb has a mental disorder."

That way Erb won’t be able to criticize me for saying it.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://

I do give you credit for posting it though, even though it clearly said something different.
No, it most certainly did not.

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
Well, then I too am guilty, as I think negatively of authority. The phrase ’necessary evil’ comes to mind. Since I am under the impression that this is more or less a libertarian oriented site, do I take it correctly then that libertarians do not place a negative connotation on governmental authority?
A reasonable question. However, it is reasonably simple answer, as well; there is a major difference between the stand that Erb (unwittingly) takes, and recognizing government has a purpose. it would be far more accurate, I think, to say that there is a negative connotation on the abuse of government. And, that we would all be far better off if government returned to its original purposes.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
" Well, "I suspect Seymour Herrsh may be right..."
"..even though it clearly said something different..."
"The truth hurts, doesn’t it?"

Jeez. I give up. If Erb were a career criminal(now, now,boys!) he would provide a full time lifetime career for a defense lawyer.
That last phrase is particularly ironic.
It’s rather Clintonesque, isn’t it?
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
Hmmm

I’ve stated very clearly more than once in this thread that I don’t know if Hersh’s qualitative judgment is accurate.


And he stated in this thread:

For me it started when he argued that the current American military is the "most murderous" in American history and offered multiple pieces of "fact" that were verifiably wrong.

Now he says:
Me: [It’s] different than explicitly calling this the "most murderous military" in American history

JWG: I never said you explicitly called it so.

He says "he argued that the American military was the most murderous" but now retreats to "I never said you explicitly called it so."

Guess it matters what the definition of "is" is, eh JWG?

And of course, you also never have shown the alleged facts that were verifably wrong. I doubt you can. But looker is right that I shouldn’t have said "the truth hurts," that did imply that I believed Hersh was right. That’s why I later in the thread explicitly said I couldn’t know if his qualitative judgement was right. You ignore that, and instead focus on the first line I wrote, and take it very literally.

Again, it looks more like an effort to play a ’gotcha game’ than any kind of real discussion. OK — I shouldn’t have said ’the truth hurts,’ mea culpa. But I also don’t dismiss Seymour Hersh’s work, his sources are superb and he’s reported a lot of big inside stories.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Well, then I too am guilty, as I think negatively of authority. The phrase ’necessary evil’ comes to mind. Since I am under the impression that this is more or less a libertarian oriented site, do I take it correctly then that libertarians do not place a negative connotation on governmental authority? I also suspect, if you are correct about Erb’s position, that you may have found the only possible thing that Erb and Billy Beck may have in common.
Yes, timactual and Bithead, I do put a negative connotation on authority. I’m not as radical or idealistic about it as Billy (he would call his position ’principled’), I’m more pragmatic. But governments are the most dangerous thing humans have ever created, and the larger and more centralized they are, the greater their penchant for doing harm. Most people end up not realizing that, or assume their government to be an exception to the rule. In all my studies of politics and political history, I cannot help but become very wary of the notion of government and allowing some people to have that kind of authority over others.

It is our particular form of social organization in this period of history. I accept that and work pragmatically in those confines; people like Billy are apparently enraged by the injustice and refuse to make the pragmatic compromise. There are other fundamental differences, I think a past debate about human rights shows a big difference between Billy and McQ on one hand, and me on the other. They see rights of property, life and liberty as ontologically present for each individual in all circumstances: they exist. I see those rights as arising from moral obligations (ethics) which emerge when people start to interact (without interaction these obligations are not present, since one is not interacting with anyone else). We then construct different ways these moral obligations take form, either as custom, common practice or, in our era of governmental power, political rights.

I argue that these moral obligations are natural and universal, but their embodiment as "rights" is how they are expressed in a particular era. Thus rights themselves are not natural, but a particular way something natural can be expressed. There are a host of ramifications from that stand point that takes my philosophy in a somewhat different direction than Billy’s, and also allows a pragmatic interpretation of the moral obligation that doesn’t necessarily follow a strict, ’objective’ and literal interpretation of each ’right’ in every context. I suspect to purists, this puts me on a slippery slope.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Hmmm

I’ve stated very clearly more than once in this thread that I don’t know if Hersh’s qualitative judgment is accurate.
Yes, I wasn’t going to bring it up again, but thank you for demonstrating another one of your tactics: Stating more than one viewpoint in a thread and then complaining when you’re challenged for clarification. From that thread for example:
1) It’s the truth
2) I don’t know if it’s the truth
3) I’ll list some arguments as to why it’s true
4) It’s likely to be true
And of course, you also never have shown the alleged facts that were verifably wrong. I doubt you can.
Well, except for the handy list I provided in the thread. It’s there for all to see.
He says "he argued that the American military was the most murderous" but now retreats to "I never said you explicitly called it so."
Riiiiight. If you want to call standing by my original statement that you argued our military is the most murderous a retreat, go ahead. Erb Logic is full of weird little rules like that.

1) Person A says, "The Maine Weasels are the best indoor soccer club in the nation."
2) Person B says, "It’s the truth! I suspect person A is right. Here are some reasons..."

According to Erb Logic, person B is NOT making an argument that the Maine Weasels are the best.

 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Yes, timactual and Bithead, I do put a negative connotation on authority. I’m not as radical or idealistic about it as Billy (he would call his position ’principled’),

As would I.
Yours on the the hand....

I’m more pragmatic. But governments are the most dangerous thing humans have ever created, and the larger and more centralized they are, the greater their penchant for doing harm. Most people end up not realizing that, or assume their government to be an exception to the rule. In all my studies of politics and political history, I cannot help but become very wary of the notion of government and allowing some people to have that kind of authority over others.
I’m not even going to bother digging into your posting history, Erb, to point up inconsistencies between this and what you been touting in the past, even in the recent past. If past be prologue, you’ll come up with enough inconsistencies going forward, to keep this thread going for the next 30 years.

But this one’s bookmarked, Erb. I’ll be referring back to this one. You can count on it.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
Gee, Bithead, if you doubt that what I wrote is a fundamental aspect of my political thinking, then you really have no clue about where I’m at politically. That’s because rather than read what I write you have an image in your mind about what I believe. The fact you would react that way to one of my core beliefs, which I’ve stated many times suggests you need to actually read what I write and respond to that, rather than to your imagination of what you think I believe.

But if you think there are inconsistencies, please show them.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
read what I write
Except when he doesn’t want you to believe what he writes, that is.

Because despite Erb’s actual words, he wants us to believe that never argued that our military is the most murderous in our history. Erb Logic 101.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Because despite Erb’s actual words, he wants us to believe that never argued that our military is the most murderous in our history. Erb Logic 101.
Exactly so. And that, of course is not the only example.

Erb, your biggest problem is we know you better than you’re comfortable with, and based on your own posting history.... your squirming not withstanding.
 
Written By: bithead
URL: http:/bitsblog.florack.us

Because despite Erb’s actual words, he wants us to believe that never argued that our military is the most murderous in our history.
Of course, since I never argued that and you cannot post any time I did, you are either lying, or have a reading comprehension problem. I did make a comment "the truth hurts" (hardly an argument) which I admit could be interpreted as agreeing with such an argument. I also admit I was wrong to make that statement.

But please, where did I make this argument? Or are you lying?

I know you prefer these kinds of gotcha games to real discussion, but it’s just too obvious how desparate you are to somehow ’get me’ in some kind of linguistic error that it looks almost pitiful. Your eagerness to get me to read a thread where apparently you were right and I was wrong (I haven’t read back yet, I’m just going by how you’re reacting) to the point that you post over and over "please, please, respond to this, pay up!" in thread after thread, even though October is the date I listed shows that it is very important to you to get me to say that I’ve done something wrong. It’s flattering in a way, but rather strange.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Yes, you did say that Erb.
Again:
" Well, "I suspect Seymour Herrsh may be right..."
Is there anyone else in here besides yourself who doesn’t clearly understand that this is EXACLY the argument you’re making?

Like I said, Clinton couldn’t do better.
Repeat after me, Scott:

It’s all a vast right wing conspiracy.
It’s all a vast right wing conspiracy.
It’s all a vast right wing conspiracy.

Now... that’s better, isn’t it?



 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
But please, where did I make this argument? Or are you lying?
You can’t be serious. I gave a perfect example already. Here it is again:

1) Person A says, "The Maine Weasels are the best indoor soccer club in the nation."
2) Person B says, "It’s the truth! I suspect person A is right. Here are some reasons..."

According to Erb Logic, person B is NOT making an argument that the Maine Weasels are the best.

You are either retarded or a liar.

1) Seymour Hersh says, "[T]here has never been an [American] army as violent and murderous as our army has been in Iraq."
2) You write that it is the truth, that you suspect Hersh is correct, and give several reasons why.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
You are weaving and bobbing to evade the truth, JWG. First, I made clear that I did not know if the qualitative judgement that the US military was the most murderous, so I clearly was not making that argument.

JWG LOGIC: If someone says he doesn’t know if X is true, then he is arguing that X is true.

Second, I said that I suspect he may be right about higher murder rates and killings, but I don’t know.

JWG LOGIC: If someone expects the possibility someone may be right but isn’t sure, then he is arguing that that person is right.

In short, you have only one thing, a line I threw there at the very start of my first post that I have since admitted was wrong, "the truth hurts." You want to ignore everything else and play a gotcha game with that statement. But you already won that gotcha game, I admitted that was wrong and I erred. But that’s not good enough for you. Yet to stay on the attack you have to use bizarre twisted JWG logic. It’s hilarious.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
In short, you have only one thing, a line I threw there at the very start of my first post that I have since admitted was wrong,
So, you’ve shifted your position.
Gee, that’s a suprise.

Erb, forgive me, but I have to ask:

Is your head supposed to be smoking like that?


 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
First, I made clear that I did not know if the qualitative judgement that the US military was the most murderous, so I clearly was not making that argument.
Really?
I suspect [Seymour Hersh] may well be right that there is more murder and killing of innocents in this war than past American wars.
Ummm.... just so you know... that you even consider the possiblity, does more to label you than any admission you could make, or any accisation someone else could make, after the fact... and it puts you directly into the same category as that blithering idiot, Hirsh. But further, your own denials after the fact don’t mesh with your own words, Erb.






 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
In Erb Logic:
"I suspect he may be right" has become "It’s possible he may be right."

I notice you’ve also decided your arguments in support of Hersh have become immaterial.

So, in reality:
JWG Logic = If someone suspects Hersh may be right (and stated previously that it was true) but also makes a claim that he isn’t really 100% sure, and that someone makes several points to support Hersh’s statement, then he is making an argument that Hersh is right.

You certainly weren’t arguing that Hersh was wrong. If you want to claim that you weren’t arguing that Hersh was right, and you weren’t arguing that Hersh was wrong, then I guess you were just masturbating.

If you truly believe that you didn’t argue in support of Hersh’s statement in that thread, then ("I suspect")you’re delusional and anyone reading this thread knows it.

This has been another case in a long line of examples (beginning with that first thread about Hersh) demonstrating how your mind operates with weasels running in the wheels instead of hamsters. I thank you.

Once again, "I suspect" Billy Beck may be right that you have a mental disorder.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
If someone may be right, that means it’s possible they are right.
If you suspect someone may be right, that means you suspect it’s possible that they are right. That’s different than saying "I suspect he IS right."

Or are you saying "is" really is the same as "maybe"? Even Clinton wouldn’t go that far!

You certainly weren’t arguing that Hersh was wrong.
Never claimed I was. I was arguing that his evidence and reporting need to be taken seriously because he may well be right.

Face it, JWG, you’ve overreached here and are left making silly ’you’re delusional...you’ve got a mental condition’ charges to cover up for the fact that I’ve nailed you. (You do realize that when insults go over the top, it makes the person giving the insults look a bit desperate). The irony is that if you had accepted victory after I admitted the "the truth hurts" comment was wrong, you could have rubbed it in that it took me months to admit it, and added a few other things I’m sure. You had a chance to declare victory in this ’gotcha game’ but it wasn’t good enough. By going to the extreme, you shoot yourself in the foot.

Hilarious.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
I’ve nailed you
I would proudly put both threads on display for everyone at your college to see. I stand by every word and argument I made. I followed clear and accurate logic while you applied standard Erb Logic and twisted the English language.

Why don’t you copy or link to them on your blog?

http://www.qando.net/details.aspx?Entry=6952
http://www.qando.net/details.aspx?Entry=4856

You can use them as an example of how people who get so tied up in partisan games of "gotcha" get trapped in their own illogic [me] while those who think clearly and have a strong command of the issues will stand tall among the rabble [you].

Of course, in reality you will never dare expose yourself to the certain laughter that will come after you link to these. Instead, you will claim that you want to spare me any embarrassment or that you don’t have a need to brag to your students about what a great debater you are...

But everyone will know the real reason.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
JWG, you’re funny. A bit over the top, but funny. Have a great weekend.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Hmmm. Declare victory and run like hell.
Funny thing; Isn’t that what he’s been calling for us to do in Iraq?

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us

 
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