18 August, 2008

Fighting Fair

I don't hang about Conservapedia much, or I wouldn't have missed this delightful exchange. Y'see, Andy Schlafly, assclown extraordinaire, would lurrrv to debate a stinking librul - except for the fact he can't. He ran away from Ames like a kicked cur.

(Note to Andy: here's how challenges work. If you make 'em, you pay for 'em, and you stick by the original terms of your fucking challenge. Unless, of course, you're so shit-scared of being publicly clobbered by a flaming liberal that you have to find a way to weasel out when one of the buggers misunderstands your grandstanding, chest-thumping, self-congratulatory bullshit and actually takes you seriously.)

The problem is this: Ames and people like him not only fight fair, they fight nice. They're good, kind, decent people who try not to sink to the stinking pits of depravity their neocon opponents inhabit. And this is why liberals lose even when they win.

Ames won this round. Andy will claim the victory because he's a lying sack of choleric monkey shit. It's how the game is played, and the fake celebrations confuse people into believing something's there to be celebrated. Since a liberal wouldn't think of celebrating such a hollow victory, well, it's the neocons who look like they've won.

I think there's a lesson in here.

Yes, we have values, and we shouldn't engage in tactics we despise to win.

But we need to be better bastards.

When slime like Andy tries to kick liberals in the teeth, don't turn the other cheek. Let him break his foot hitting the hard stuff.

When bottom feeders like Andy try to move the goalposts, give their hands a good, sharp smack and announce, "The goalposts stay where they are, you son of a bitch. What, you have to cheat to win now?"

We don't have to be nasty, necessarily. But liberals have a tendency to be conciliatory and offer compromises and try to accommodate, and people like Andy see that as weakness. They use others' good will to fuck them over, because they know they can get away with it. They don't understand diplomacy. They do, however, understand the use of force.

So we should get forceful. When we've tried a compromise and found the only thing our opponent's willing to compromise is his integrity, compromise stops, and the smackdown begins. Call them out. Call them six kinds of coward, explain to the universe at large just what a stupid fucking loser your opponents have to be to pull that shit, expose the dishonesty and don't fucking back down. Bludgeon them with the truth. Ream them with the facts. Don't get nice again until they've shown you their belly. Because if you offer your hand the instant they stop growling but before they've shown submission, you're gonna lose a finger.

And no, that's not going to keep these pathetic little liars from slithering their way out of a tight corner and trying to play the victor. They won't fight you honestly because they know they're gonna lose. That's why you celebrate calling them out on their lies. Throw the loudest, longest victory party evah whenever some neocon weasel-fucker has just ducked, weaved, and goal-post shifted himself away from certain disaster.

Stuff your liberal guilt into a sack and drown it. What do you have to feel guilty about when you're fighting fair? You're being assertive, not aggressive. You don't lie, you don't cheat, you don't make impossible demands, so there's nothing in the world to be ashamed of. And if you called your opponent a two-faced goat-fucker during a heated exchange, well, sometimes, truth hurts, but it's important to tell the truth even so.

We don't have to fight dirty. But fighting fair doesn't mean having to fight nice.


Eric said...

I would add that we (as liberals) should ensure that we *do* fight fair, that we don't lie, that we don't cheat.

There are several groups considered 'liberal' who will mislead, lie, whatever, to advance their agenda, and I won't be having with that!

PETA is the most immediate example (though *I* would describe them as radical lunatics, they seem to be portrayed as a liberal group for some reason). A lot of environmentalists who don't understand the science will do similar - they grab a thought from a popular press version of a scientific paper and ignore any nuance associated with it - not deliberately (probably), but it still ends up misleading a lot of people.

We should also stop preaching to the choir! Preach to those who need accurate information - as you say, *challenge* those bastards!

ex animo-

PTET said...

I don't do conspiracy theories... But if I did, I'd say Schlafly was a liberal creation designed to make Conservative Home-Schoolers look more un-be-fucking-leivably-stupid than anyone could possibly imagine.

Leroy Grinchy said...

I really appreciate what you are doing. Someone has to do it.

I personally gave up debating for many reasons. One of them is my temper. I found that it hurt me more than the other person.

I am easily trolled and have tender feelings.

Also, when I would win, I would look like a dick so in a way, it was a loss. If I lost, I didn't really change my mind. I realized that the other side would NEVER change their mind either, no matter how much I proved my point.

I even came up with a saying, "win an argument, lose a friend."

John Stewart made this point very well when he went on Cross Fire and told people to stop debating because it was not accomplishing anything.

I am open to changing my mind about things given the information. I read liberal and conservative media. But I find that the atmosphere of a debate is hostile. I don't find this a good way to learn new things.

The truth is not a prize that can be won like a football superbowl. It is either true or not. A debate changes nothing.

Ames said...

I hear that Ames guy is really sexy. And brilliant. And that he commands the obedience of sea creatures.

Ames said...

Also totally agreed with PTET :)

Dana Hunter said...

@Ames: That's interesting - I heard the exact same rumor! It MUST be true!!11!!

Well, I believe it is.

@Eric: Believe me, I'd never encourage us to lie or cheat. Just get more... forceful... with the truth. I think a lot of the problem is that folks see liberals as weak just because they're nice, and that weakens the power of the truth. It's why I'm fairly excited to see Obama call liars what they are, and call the Republicons out for willful stupidity.

Don't get me started on PETA. Just don't. We'll be here for another two centuries. And the Smack-o-Matic, sturdy as it is, might not survive the experience.

@PTET: I think you're on to something there... It has the ring of truth!

@ Leroy: Thankees for the compliment! And excellent points. I used to think the same way, and avoid debate for the same reasons - until reading some really rollicking debates changed my mind. For the most part, the so-called "debate" in this country is more of a debacle, but there's a chance that forceful debate can have a good effect. We shall see.