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Here's a thought experiment: What if someone shouted "Fire!" in a crowded theater...

... and every person in that theater knew that in the case of a fire, the very last thing you should do is panic? If every person in that theater knew that "FIRE!" means that you get up and walk calmly to the door -- no pushing, no shoving, no trying to muscle anyone else out of the way...

... why, then, in no time at all, you'd have an empty theater. Which, of course, could mean a waste of ticket and/or babysitting money, to be sure. But that's nothing compared to the carnage that even a false alarm can create if panic ensues, as it almost always does.

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. (Yes, I do fear a few other things; among are them global warming, toxic waste, and Justin Bieber. But none of them can threaten us through this site. Let's just pretend Roosevelt was addressing Kossacks when he said that.) Whether paid or unpaid, skilled or unskilled, anyone trying to stir the pot will only be as successful as we allow them, or their dogs, to be.

So I really don't care if there are paid trolls running around here trying to stir up trouble. I urge one and all of you to be at least as apathetic. I can't imagine a worse waste of community resources than trying to sniff out who is or isn't a paid troll.

Personally, I rolled a 3 for telepathy, and I know damn well that the rest of you did too. So any attempt at sniffing out the paid trolls is pretty much guaranteed to result in way more harm than good. That goes at least double if the paid trolls have the chutzpah, after all the fuss we've made over them, to not even exist at this site. (And you know those paid trolls are just sneaky-sly enough to pull a stunt like that.)

This isn't a theater. Your life isn't in danger if someone yells "FIRE!" when there isn't one, or even if they don't and there is. So, when you suspect you've spotted a paid troll, try treating them with kindness and respect. Instead of calling them out for what you think they are, just stick to the facts of the case at hand. Most likely, they'll get bored. Or very possibly you'll confuse the heck out of them. Or maybe, just maybe, they might even learn a thing or two. Well, at least their dogs might.

And stop feeding the meta-trolls who write meta-diaries like this one. My fondest wish is that this diary should collapse in a puff of human kindness.


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