Tuesday, July 24, 2012

WINGNUT COLLOQUY. Here's the sentence that set him off:
At first their outrage was attracted by an on-air report by ABC News' Brian Ross on the shooter's identity after his name, but no details, had been revealed. Ross said this: "There's a Jim Holmes of Aurora, Colorado, page on the Colorado Tea party site, talking about him joining the Tea Party last year. Now, we don't know if this is the same Jim Holmes, but it's Jim Holmes of Aurora, Colorado."
Then ensued:

To recap: The guy misapprehended the sentence and called me a liar; when his error was pointed out to him,  he pretended not to be able to read.

I stopped talking to him at this point, but I should never have started.  (I even went out of my way to be civil, which you all know is a great effort for me.) My problem was, I tried to figure out how he came to his misunderstanding. Maybe he thought the clause pertained to "attracted" rather than "report" -- but then, why would I have inserted immediately thereafter the very details Ross revealed?

But his responses revealed what I should have known from jump -- that he's just a yelling bot, and has no premises at all. He exists to denounce liberals and trawl the attention of big-name conservatives. He isn't there to listen, except for the sound of his own name.

The internet's full of people like this. They make outrageous statements and when they're called on them pretend not to know what's going on. And a lot of them mistake what they're doing for actual argument. It's like "Firing Line" with dialogue from "Pee-Wee's Playhouse."

And it seems this style is bubbling up to the big-name guys, too. I saw a clip recently of James Taranto on the Lou Dobbs show, and though when I met Taranto years ago he was mild-mannered and easy to talk to, on the show he was bellowing like a Fox News clown. Matt Lewis used to be a relatively sensible conservative writer, and now at The Daily Caller he's writing boob bait like this "guns don't kill people, movies do" thumbsucker.

It's getting to the point where you can't talk to them at all, and that's a real bad point.

UPDATE. Dyer has apologized to me, which is gracious of him. (I wasn't fishing for it, because in my experience people who demand and exult in apologies are assholes, and only mention it to credit him.) He still thinks I misunderstand him, and who knows, maybe I do. Anyway I welcome to opportunity to stop seething at him. Everyone else, however...

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