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February 04, 2003

REACTIONISM
[Hey, if there can be Hitlerism, there can be reactionism.]
If you h ave any questions, ask away. In comments here preferably.

Gary Utter took the time to coherently and thoughtfully (?) respond to my question about the right's position on immigration. See |
here | and | here |
for context. I do not post here out of any inherent need to show my brilliance, etc etc. Certainly Gary wouldn't think so. But seeing discussion, debate whatever we're calling it here, in action is interesting. And I did put some time and energy into my reply so I'll rationalize it that way.

By the way, before you read on, but hopefully after you have the context, I did get an e-mail from esmayNOSPAM@deanesmay.com last night: "I just wanted to let you know, your response to Gary's rant was a model of civility and decency. Good on you."

Gary posted a follow up post to mine of last night:
Dearest Dimn,

If you want to make an arguement that US immigration policy is deeply DEEPLY flawed, you should make that arguement. You'd get no disagreement from me.

But that's not what you said, what you said was "why does the right and Mr. Instapundit spend so much time demonizing illegal immigrants,"

The slur on InstaPundit is inexcuseable. It is either a lie, or it is ignorance so profound as to boggle the mind. You can't excuse it by tossing off a "I'm not willing to do the research so I'll take your word for it". The slur on the right was hardly less ignorant. While the right opposes illegal immigration, for MOST on the right it is not a major item on thier agenda, and for the most part, they have more important things to talk about. With one little question, you display ignorance and hatred, and then you expect to be taken seriously. That strikes me as only slightly less ludicrous than your original statement.

You then follow it up with "as if a piece of paper made all the difference on everything from work ethic to morals". In fact, that peice of paper makes a profound difference. There are certainly people who have it that, really, shouldn't. And there are certainly people who do not have it who, really, SHOULD. But that is not the arguement you are making. The argument you are making, with that one line, is that immigration law is, in and of itself, bogus.

>>"I agree that immigration papers are required. I did not say there was no difference between someone who takes the effort and time to get papers and one who does not."

Yes, you did say that. That is EXACTLY what you said. If you meant to say something else, you should have SAID something else.

>>"If you found out they were here illegally, then you would suddenly turn on them? "

No, actually, I would try to help them resolve thier problem. What did I say, in any post in this thread prior to your one sentence trollbomb, to suggest that I dislike immigrants, legal OR illegal? You came into a perfectly polite, friendly conversation lauding immigrants with your own agenda, viewed the participants through the lens of your own ignorance and prejudice, and now you suggest that _I_ am reactionary?

I suggest that YOU need to re-examine your position. If you want to have a polite convesation about the problems with immigration law and the INS in general, we can do that.

if you want to spew hatred and ignorance (and brother, that is EXACTLY what you did), you might want to join the like minded twits at Democratic Underground or Bartcop. I'm sure THOSE morons will find your approach entirely normal.

NOW, what's it going to be? Are you going to apologize for your slurs and join a civil conversation? Or are you going to engage in more spin?

Dear Dean,

We were being cool and thinking happy thoughts, with not a controversy in sight, when Dimn popped in and literally spewed hate. I hope you will excuse me for being slightly torqued. That was just RUDE. (I suppose I was too, but REALLY, he was just uncalled for.



I replied, via e-mail:

Hello Gary,

I'm taking this off the comments - though will be happy to post there if you like. Dean has already asked us, in his way, to calm down. [I'm just assuming there is an actual Dean Esmay].

You're right. I did intrude on an innocent discussion about the relative merits of food. But I was responding to your post and not to the comments.

You are an angry person. Again with the name calling, something which somehow I have not resorted to. You say I came into the discussion and "spewed hatred."

Spewed hatred? Your talent for hyperbole is only exceeded by, well, your talent for missing the point. In this blogdom, I am really looking for reasonable people to discuss things with. [or unreasonable people who are willing to have reasonable arguments/discussions] So I won't write you off, yet - not that you should care one way or the other, of course. :-)

What I did in my comments was ask more questions allowing you to respond. What you seem to have taken them as are assertions that you are a racist or something similar.

QUOTING
>>"If you found out they were here illegally, then you would suddenly turn on them? "

No, actually, I would try to help them resolve thier problem. What did I say, in any post in this thread prior to your one sentence trollbomb, to suggest that I dislike immigrants, legal OR illegal?>>

Again, throughout I have not called anyone a name. I have not even said anyone was a racist. I merely asked the question - would you turn on them? That is not a suggestion nor was it meant as one. It was a question.

[NOTE - Absent a question mark I guess you could take my next question "You would base your entire opinion of them as people on whether they were illegal immigrants." as a statement instead. However, if you were a little less blinded by anger here, you may have taken the time to understand. But then you thought I was "spewing hate" so you reacted accordingly.]

I expected you to say "no I would turn on them and here's why. I was - naively? - looking forward to a clear explantion as to how you could reconcile the two positions.

I find it hard to believe - though since I do not know you well enough I do not DISBELIEVE - that you would, as you wrote, take the time out of your life to "help them resolve their problem." Please don't respond to this point that I've cast aspersions on your character.

YOUR STATEMENT
>>The argument you are making, with that one line, is that immigration law is, in and of itself, bogus.>>

That's the argument you say I'm making and how you interpreted it. But it was not what I was trying to say or what I have said since then. I expanded on what I was trying to say once I saw somebody was willing to step in and respond.

Lastly your related idea that I "can't excuse it by tossing off a "I'm not willing to do the research so I'll take your word for it" is incorrect. Wrong. Factually deficient.

Should I be expected to lay out a complete disertation on the merits or lack thereof of US immigration policy at my first post, where my experience in many cases is that the thread dies and is forgotten? I'm not going to waste that much time and energy - ESPECIALLY in the early hours of the morning.

That is an unreasonable request and you know it. That does not mean I wouldn't back it up later. For instance, I didn't see any footnotes or links for the comment that "Thai's love basil." But I didn't expect any.

And interestingly enough Instapundit really never offered any supporting data for his idea that - as you originally quoted him "people are hardly even paying attention to that angle because it just seems, well, normal."

Go bake him.

I wouldn't, though. First, if I was you, I'd ask him maybe what he meant or if he could clarify.

I was paying attention to her and reading others who were. I thought it was a great life story. Maybe he meant HE wasn't paying attention.

I have deeply held beliefs. So do you - apparently. You can continue the name-calling or you can try to ask - "What are they really saying? Perhaps it's my fault I don't understand."

After all , that's what I was doing.
Ass munch :-)
-- see, that was tone-lightening joke.
Andrew | dimn