David Thompson
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December 19, 2015

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Room 237

This is why there can be no such thing as conservative satire. How do you satirize people like this? It is impossible. They are the living embodiment of satire and the satirist can go no further

Nemo

R Sherman: There's a moral responsibility in making a statement of fact; stating something as fact is itself a claim of evidence and I thought using a particularly offensive accusation so baselessly would have been a slam-dunk - nobody would be called a paedophile and say it's not a lie just for argument, would they? - and then we could maybe discuss the effects on society (and that's back to Penny Dreadful!) And much of what you say of 'innocent mistakes' and 'willful ignorance' creates the grey areas which so often provided refuge for Tony Blair and is the public sector default: say something to make them go away and when that's shown to be untrue. I can't quite figure your position out: much of what you say seems a round-about way of saying "Yes, it's a lie - unless they're lazy or stupid", which at least excuses Laurie.

dicentra

"Saddam has weapons of mass destruction and rockets capable of delivering them to Britain in 45 minutes".

It's only a lie if you know it's not true but you're saying it anyway to manipulate people into doing what you want when they wouldn't otherwise do it, absent the deception.

Even Bob Woodward says Bush wasn't lying. He may have been lied to, but then that just puts him in the same boat as British and French intelligence, all of whom said the same thing.

Nemo

Dicentra: I chose that example because Blair's defence when it proved false wasn't that he was actively misled, but that he was never informed that the missiles were only battlefield tactical - kind of thing the posturing Blair might have been expected to check before sending troops to confiscate said weapons. And thus, in the absence of absolute evidence to prove so, none of it was a lie though much was untrue, and look how well it's worked out. Which gets back to the nub of why I'm laboring the point: this structure of untruth, willful ignorance, etc gives someone like Blair a free pass based on his own useful complacency. On the more mundane level, in my experience it's also universal in the public sector, in the form of saying the first thing that comes into their head to avoid thinking or working, safe in the knowledge that should what they say happen to be an 'untruth' then it'll just be written-of as an honest mistake, and at worst they'll have to spend a week away from work for training - tea, coffee and lunch provided.

dicentra

And thus, in the absence of absolute evidence to prove so, none of it was a lie though much was untrue

There's telling an untruth with the active intent to deceive and then there's the desire for plausible deniability and/or ignorant bliss, effected by not following through with due diligence when such diligence is (a) warranted (b) possible.

The latter is definitely weaselly in elected officials, whom we must necessarily trust to sort through the noise to discern the signal.

Not an intent to deceive per se but definitely willful neglect. Definitely breach of trust and dereliction of duty.

As for the rank and file who prefer easy lies to complex truths, I can't entirely account for it, though in some cases it becomes clear that for some of the willfully ignorant, acquisition of knowledge doesn't translate into any kind of wisdom or understanding.

In fact, some of them are so befuddled by complex truth that they revert to the easy lie, all the better to "fit in" and sleep peacefully at night.

And to not have to answer uncomfortable questions.

Nemo

Well, I hold to my original statement, but I'll quit now lest I get sent to Guernsey.

Rich Rostrom

WTP December 20, 2015 at 20:12: I do think Canadianne should be a word however.

It is, though spelled Canadienne - the feminine form of "Canadien" (as the Montréal hockey team).

David

As noted by a commenter over at Instapundit:

[Laurie] appears to be f-bombing in order to establish her creds as an adult and be taken seriously. The irony is that it makes her come across as hopelessly infantile and not worth listening to. Someone, somewhere along the way, evidently convinced her that tirade = argument, anger = moral authority, and shock = rhetorical boldness. Wrong on all counts.

Sounds about right.

Quint&Jessel, Sea of Azof, Bly, UK

"But again, I’m not convinced that Laurie actually believes any of the bollocks she mouths."

Great Heavenly Days, David, don't put images like that in my head! Shudder.

David

No refunds. Credit note only.

David

Speaking of “emotional labour,” Zoe Williams is positively seething with Christmas cheer.

splotchy

Laurie seems confident her outpourings make men angry - which suggests some stereotyping wrt how she regards others.

I wonder what she thinks women think of her? I'm female - my feelings oscillate between pity, hilarity, and astonishment. She is, to be fair, sort of entertaining. But not in the way she hopes.

Captain Nemo

Zoe Williams will not be truly happy until everyone is as miserable as she is.

Adiabat

Nemo: I agree, if someone makes an assertion without knowing whether it is true or false, then they have lied, even if it later turns out to true. The assertion is itself a statement that they know it is true.

‘Honest’ Abe Lincoln said it best: “I believe it is an established maxim in morals that he who makes an assertion without knowing whether it is true or false, is guilty of falsehood; and the accidental truth of the assertion, does not justify or excuse him.”

We have this weird cultural thing in the West that we aren’t supposed to call people liars; it’s one of those things you just don’t do. Frankly, it seems like a rule cooked up by liars.

PiperPaul

"There's telling an untruth with the active intent to deceive and then there's the desire for plausible deniability and/or ignorant bliss..."

Why did the subject of "Climate Change" just pop into my head?

David

Laurie seems confident her outpourings make men angry - which suggests some stereotyping wrt how she regards others. I wonder what she thinks women think of her? I’m female - my feelings oscillate between pity, hilarity, and astonishment.

Yes, but it’s Laurie’s standard response to being ridiculed, which, as you can imagine, happens quite a lot. She dismisses the ridicule as “anger” and “fear.” I’ve lost count of how many times she’s done this particular dance. Of course it’s self-flattering and dishonest. Aside from one or two fits of exasperation, reactions are more typically derisive and mocking. But admitting to being ridiculed doesn’t offer much scope for self-inflation. It has to be framed as hate, an attempt to suppress. Because she’s so incredibly radical and important, so dangerous to The Patriarchy.

WTP

Regarding leaders and lying, etc. etc. I would say this is the root of the problem:


Admit It. You Just Want Your Own Dictator
Those empowered to make everything great also have the power to do everything horrible.

This incessant clamoring by voters and punditry for better “leaders” and more “leadership” is one of the most unsavory, dangerous, and un-American tendencies in political discourse.

When Donald Trump was asked last week by Joe Scarborough what he made of an endorsement from Vladimir Putin—a thug who’s probably murdered journalists and political opponents, and more—the GOP frontrunner responded: “He’s running his country and at least he’s a leader, unlike what we have in this country,” before offering an incredibly dumb moral equivalency about the United States also doing “plenty of killing.”
...

http://thefederalist.com/2015/12/22/admit-it-you-just-want-your-own-dictator/

The offshoot of this is that obviously everybody can't have their own dictator. But you can get politicians to lie to you and make you think you're getting your own dictator. The fault lies not in our politicians but in ourselves.

And thanks, RR. I knew there just had to be such. I kinda like my spelling of it better. Though I'm beginning to fear that my horrible spelling is really a repressed narcissistic flaw exposing itself.

BeckoningChasm

Every statement I make is a lie, including this one.

mojo

MANipulate? That's sexist language, that is.

Patrick Brown

"She dismisses the ridicule as “anger” and “fear.” I’ve lost count of how many times she’s done this particular dance."

"Anger" is just an appeal to the damsel in distress reflex - nasty man picking on a poor defenceless woman - and "fear" is about undermining your opponent's masculinity - you're not tough enough to be a "real man". If you ever find yourself on the other side of the argument to a feminist, expect to be called either threatening or threatened (or both). Feminism relies very heavily on traditional gender roles.

TimT

The 'romantic love is a systemic lie' tweet came just after this.

Randy

I knew that David was gay 5 or 6 years ago, but I forgot.

wtp

Hmmm. Fell in love, Waffle House, cynicism regarding love...something tells me Kid Rock has a hand in this...

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