Crossposted from MY LEFT WING
Free Mumia: Yet Another Embarrassing Topic for Many Liberals
I'm not kidding about the Free Mumia thing: many liberals cite that very phrase as one of those "fringe" topics on the left that make them CRINGE in embarrassment on behalf of similiarly minded liberals.
Every time I've seen someone who is not a troll <font color="orangered">self-destruct like this</font> (hrh's AM I A Troll?) on DKos, it's generally been born of a keen sense of frustration, disappointment and helplessness. And I TOTALLY relate to that, irrespective of any agreement or lack thereof as concerns the substance of the posts.
Content deleted due to diarist's serious misgivings about everything. My apologies to anyone who desperately wanted to read the diary in question, but you may find it at MLW; personally, my overloaded computer is having a fucking hard time waiting for 800 comments to load, and I have yet to find a way to hide the full comments and still be able to figure out which ones I still need to read. I am retarded that way.
Content restored, as follows:
Frankly, the only reason I haven't been autobanned is because I withdrew almost completely from this community when I sensed the incredible sea change in the attitudes of intolerance and hostility from a few very specifically populated groups here, who happen to wield a lot of power and influence, such as those things are possible in a blog.
And yes, as soon as anyone mentions that sort of thing, he is immediately derided for mentioning aloud the very real suspicion that he is witnessing changes that bespeak a backsliding on the blogging evolutionary scale.
But that fact is, there ARE groups of dominant posters here, and they DO "enforce" conformity here, in increasingly LESS subtle ways. To deny that fact is to indicate one's utter blindness when it comes to any of the many flaws of DKos -- or one's complicity, be it subconscious or not, in the attempt to enforce that conformity.
I am astonished lately at the finest of lines to be found between ideologues on any position on the political spectrum. The ONLY difference is the political position, for the behaviour and mentality surrounding every other aspect of life is eerily, painfully, sickeningly similar: a leftist ideologue, a rightwing ideologue and yes, even a CENTRIST ideologue will almost always rely on basic fascistic tactics to attain and maintain his power and mythology.
And we've all read the voluminous research that's been done on the herd mentality -- very few people escape it at its most basic levels, and surprisingly few escape it at its most HEINOUS.
So to raise oneself up in righteous indignation and seething, accusatory fury when anyone so much as intimates, let alone boldly decries, signs of the sort of ideological fervour that births rigid, authoritarian, fascistic "groupthink" (there, I said it) -- well, it's rather like trying to argue that one is not in denial -- any claim to such a thing will immediately be pointed out as the very thing, denial, one is tring to deny.
Far better, in my estimation, to ignore such complaints, if they are disturbing to one's worldview. But no, that's not what happens: invariably, diaries like the Supervixens series are set upon by packs of people who feel the need, nay the RIGHT, to decry the diarist and denounce her motives and revile her style.
Given the absurdly high signal to noise (noise to signal? I can never remember. First time I ever heard the phrase and its meaning was here in the blogosphere -- made perfect sense, though) ratio here, I find the oft-heard plaint that DKos will be ruined, simply ruined! if people like X are allowed to post their absurd nonsense without being hipchecked for it by a large number of people, lest "they" get wind of it and, heaven forfend, develop negative opinions of Daily Kos!
As if the piddling number of fraud diaries or UFO diaries or just plain stupid diaries will somehow reflect badly on Daily Kos with THEM and result in -- what? WHAT, exactly? Bad press??? Every time Daily Kos gets "bad press," its traffic soars.
Anyone who would read Daily Kos and come away thinking it a "far left" "whackjob" "nutty, left wing" site is either keenly stupid, barely literate, a member of the far right christofascist neocon zombie brigade -- or, more than possibly, two or more of the above.
A friend of mine, who's been relaying to me some of the dramas online while I've been sick as a fucking dog with flu and all manner of gross infirmity this fucking holiday season, told me about the vilification of One Pissed Off Liberal at DKos. Apparently someone of influence here decried OPOL's work as "impeachment porn" -- whatever that means -- and of contributing to the "dumbing down" of the site by relying rather on an emotional response to his work than on an intellectual one.
Pardon me but what the FUCK is that kind of bullshit criticism? Is there a syllabus for diarists there now? And a Strunk & White for the only PROPER way to write diaries? Why the holy fuck shouldn't OPOL be allowed to post whatever the fuck he wants to post, as long as he isn't breaking any of the RULES here, in any STYLE he wishes, for whatever EFFECT he wishes to achieve -- without being ridiculed or vilified for so doing?
Yeah, I'm a little more than pissed off on OPOL's behalf, not only because I happen to find his work beautiful, powerful and creative -- but also because I AGREE with him -- as do a great may people. AND, one more very important thing -- I feel a kinship with OPOL for the very reason that I, too, have always been dismissed and derided by a certain faction of people here who find me too emotional, lacking in the sort of substance THEY believe ought to be the gold standard of posting diaries on a political blog. I use profanity too much. I appeal to the emotional, rather than the intellectual. I rely on my personality, rather than on facts, figures, statistics and references. I write nothing like a journalist or essayist -- I follow no goddamned RULES, goddamnit! And we need RULES at DKos, we need ORDER, goddamnit. If we are ever to HOPE of winning and beating those goddamned automatons of the right wing, we have to BE MORE LIKE THEM.
I used to think it simply sour grapes from the oldtimers -- but now that I AM an oldtimer, it pains me to say they were right all along -- the bigger DKos gets, the more ugly its defects become, by mere virtue of there being so many more people gathering here. There are always a few rotten apples -- and the larger a crowd, the more rotten apples there be. Fact of fucking life, man. And the rotten apples here are all the more rotten because their intentions are SO good, they really are -- but get out your map and check the destination of many good intentions, fellow traveler.
In closing, I'd like to pre-rebut anyone who comes into this diary and proceeds to rebuke me for posting it, for having the opinions I do, and for continuing to come here and post diaries here and engage in discussions here, because, goddamnit, I have my OWN blog and should therefore somehow be precluded from any further participation here, lest it be seen -- rightly so, shameless blogwhore! -- as attempting to drive traffic back to my own site. As if this is simply too egregious a motive for crossposting:
First of all, who the fuck died and made YOU the arbiter of what I ought to post and where I ought to post and which STYLE I ought best employ when I post? You got problems with what I write, when, where are how? Fucking pass me by, motherfucker. There's a great big blog out there, and all you have to do to be spared the pain and ignominy of reading my goddamned diaries is to NOT CLICK ON THEM AND PROCEED TO READ THEM.
I've been here at DKos for close to three years. I love this site. If it weren't for this site -- well, insert ominous consequence here. It was this site that convinced me to start my own site -- after first convincing me that I had a unique style and method of expression, and that it was worth something to a lot of people. Worth nurturing and practicing and honing. So anyone who wants to accuse me of being a troll can kiss my orange motherfucking ass. I was a Kossack long before I started my own blog, and I've never had any but the best wishes and intentions for Daily Kos.
Oh yeah, the person who inspired this diary, hrh, the one who was autobanned for inviting troll ratings, in response to her very definite and supremely unpopular point of view about Daily Kos and the changes she despised in it? I've told her I look forward to reading her diaries on My Left Wing. Whether I agree with her or not (and I find lately I do more often than I don't), I welcome as diverse a range of left wing thought as is possible at MLW.
UPDATE: Things with hrh were not as I thought when I first posted this diary, but I STILL don't think she was a troll.
Oh, yes, I have a long and storied career of conflicted agonising over allowing someone to continue posting long after he's made me fucking furious on countless occasions, alienated half the regular membership base and, worst of all, posted opinions I found abso-fucking-lutely LUDICROUS.
Here's the deal, man, when it comes to free speech and all that jazz: sure, MLW is a private enterprise, and I have never hesitated banning an outright TROLL -- you know, the kind who posts a diary and repeated comments consisting of nothing more than vulgar slurs on my person or the site -- stuff along the lines of "You fucking suck you stoopid lefters suck my dix." No problem at ALL booting that breed. But then there's the breed that really fucking bothers me -- the left wingers who have all the bona fides but also what seems to be something I call Online Personality Disorder: the seeming inability to behave in a manner conducive to respectful debate. Hostile, obnoxious, hyper-negative -- you know the type. They get autobanned at Daily Kos. At MLW, they become part of the lexicon. And they have to be really, truly trolls, of not only effect but intention, to get banned. Shunned, certainly -- banned, rarely.
I've lost friends and membership over this policy. People who otherwise think I hung the moon think me absolutely STUPID for this.
I can't help it. You can split hairs over the meaning of the phrase "free speech," and argue how it doesn't apply to private enterprise, how the only true definition of censorship is that done by government, how no one opn a privately owned blog has the right to -- or even the expectation of -- free speech...
But it's censorship, plain and simple, when you make rules about what topics may not be written about -- without some vague notion of a respectable amount of references or some such nonsense. This isn't fucking journalism, man -- this is, at BEST, op-ed. But it's not even that -- these are DIARIES. As in,
Dear Diary, I have NO proof, but I KNOW in my heart of hearts they stole the election of 2004. Had peas with dinner. They came up with everyting else. Fucking flu is disgusting this year.
Found a terrific video on YouTube; I wonder who those guys are?
Oh well, I guess that's all.
Okay, I exaggerate for effect. But it seems to me the best response to something like that is NO response. So, someone's delusional when it comes to posting blog diaries -- so the fuck what? You sign up, you're told you have a limit of 1 diary per day, and you're given some guidelines on how to approach diary-ing. SO you neglect to read it -- so the fuck what? A few people can make some helpful comments and then the rest of the goddamned people should just IGNORE the thing. And this really ought to apply to topics and opinions you find absurd or offensive, too. Just let it sink slowly to the bottom of the page like everyone else's stuff. There -- instant expiration date. But no -- for some reason, people find it irresistible to throw in their two cents on how STUPID the poster is -- or what a TROLL the poster is -- and before you know it, this ludicrous diary -- or pointed, offensive diary -- has 500+ comments, and lo, the diarist has had more eyeballs on his piece than all those more deserving.
It's the Busybody Syndrome. Not troll hunting -- just busy bodying. Gotta poke your nose in and make your opinion known -- even if its substance and perhaps even wording is EXACTLY that of the LAST thirty commenters'.
Well, I went off the point again somewhere. Not a very SUBSTANTIAL diary, I know -- but I don't post that much anymore, so don't even think about telling me this is a Waste of a Diary. Last I heard, I could still post anything anytime, as long as I didn't claim George Bush orchestrated 9/11 and the Republican Cabal stole the 2004 election. Check -- I did neither of these things. I posted what I felt like posting, and if you don't like it, feel free to lump it.
Oh, here was my point: This diary is NOT in defence of hrh. I agree with some things she's said, disagree with some others, you know the drill. I merely use this as an example because it fits so many of the criteria for my purpose. The person in question has obviously offended many people here -- deeply. Said nasty things. Gone ballistic. Most people disagree with either her message, her method -- or both. And I guess if avoiding disruption is the goal here, then she's gotta go.
Me, I want to read it all. I'm a big girl -- I can sort the dross from the gems, and I refuse to concern myself with what those less intellectually GIFTED might misinterpret. Frankly, if you're sitting there thinking that if you can just control the content of Daily Kos, lots of those fucksticks out there will finally SEE THE LIGHT, that DKos will NOT be misrepresented and vilified by the corporate media and the right wing zombie brigade -- dude, you are one deluded Democrat.
It's. a. blog. Highly influential, possibly -- definitely has crashed the gates. That's for sure. But still a blog. Impressive numbers, enviable, to be sure -- but not even a tenth of a percentage point of the average sitcom's audience. Not even, goddamnit, a notable percentage of audience numbers when compared to, say, Fox News or MSNBC.
If someone were to post a diary at Daily Kos that would "reflect badly on Daily Kos" if THEY saw it, what would you do?
Me, I'd ignore it. As I often do.
THE UPDATE as it read at DKos, before I deleted the entire diary's contents, leaving only the discussion:
For the first time in a long time, I am seriously considering deleting this diary. I have posted a poll. I'll give it an hour and then follow the dictates of the poll.
I seem to have become a really bad fit for Daily Kos, and that feels awful -- but there's nothing I can do but either stop posting here altogether, or just post stuff that is non-confrontational and uncontroversial.
If it's STILL not obvious, I was NOT defending hrh with this post. I did NOT write this diary to decry the autoban of hrh. She asked for it and she got it. There was a larger motherfucking theme here, people, but as is increasingly the case, the literalism pretty much swept through everything else and left nothing but my constant attempts to EXPLAIN what I truly thought was MORE than obvious. From the patently ABSURD accusation that I usede "FREE MUMIA" as a way to REEL in the readers (please. I mean, PUHLEEZE. Since when does a MUMIA diary get READERS??? It was a fucking DEVICE) -- to the disgusting misapprehension that I was A defending hrh in her wewks-long downward spiral and/or B in ANY way equating OPOL with hrh -- jesus motherfucking christ, people, get a fucking GRIP.
For those of you out there who have awaited with bated breath the day when the ever more irritating MSOC would finally leave this place for good, congratulations -- I've come one goddamned inch away from doing so -- and frankly, I think I am done posting diaries here. This horseshit is just not worth it.
Parenthetically -- what happened to the option of simply shutting down comments in one's own diary? Is that not available anymore? Because if it is, I'm not seeing it.
Anyway, take the poll. I am AGAINST deleting diaries, but this one seems to be the exception to my rule, it seems.
I will post one last diary at DKos, though I cannot say when -- and then I am through. It is intolerable to me any longer.
Anyway, I am thoroughly exhausted by this DKos discussion, so if you have anything to say to me, say it at MLW, please. 800 is too many through which to wade.
I have fixed some typos and clarified MINOR points -- nothing major has been changed about this diary. I apologise for dumping it temporarily, but I was really hopiong that would make it drop off the Recommended Diaries List, and I think it probably helped to delete the contents for a while...