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MeFi and antisemitism May 13, 2007 3:18 PM   Subscribe

So MeFi user Brian B. has chosen to use the recent Scientology thread to spread a bit of good old-fashioned antisemitism, selective quotes from the Talmud styley, explaining why, apparently, Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews, something my own rabbi omitted to mention at any point, starting here and continuing through the thread. As I am relatively new to posting here, I would like to ask what is the MeFi etiquette for dealing with a fellow MeFite who wants to use the site to spread racist propaganda of this sort. Because right now I am breathing very slowly and deeply and still seeing everything through an extremely red mist and I would appreciate some suggestions.
posted by motty to Etiquette/Policy at 3:18 PM (1723 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

*grabs some kosher popcorn*
posted by Eideteker at 3:32 PM on May 13, 2007


Wait - I'm confused. Is this good old-fashioned antisemitism or is this racist propaganda. Because I'm a huge fan of racist propaganda but I like my antisemitism with a more post-modern edge.
posted by jonson at 3:35 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


metafilter: even the anti-semitism is snarky
posted by jourman2 at 3:39 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


I wouldn't say he's anti-semitic as much as he is vehemently anti-religion. If you look at his posting history, he's out there battling Christianity as well. Even his Posts are about the "evils" of religion.

Generally people who come to mefi with the single intent to get their views across on politics or religion rarely make good contributors. The site would be better without them. The majority are in that adolescent phase where they don't realize that the "great insight" they just had is the same arguments people have been making ad nauseam online and offline - for centuries.
posted by vacapinta at 3:43 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


He really goes off the deep end at the end there - classic post-and-run racist asshole argument style. Seems a bit out-of-sorts for him, though, at least after a quick glance at his posting history.

As I am relatively new to posting here, I would like to ask what is the MeFi etiquette for dealing with a fellow MeFite who wants to use the site to spread racist propaganda of this sort.

It's not been tolerated in the past.
posted by mediareport at 3:44 PM on May 13, 2007


"The majority are in that adolescent phase where they don't realize that the "great insight" they just had is the same arguments people have been making ad nauseam online and offline - for centuries."

Vacapinta, I made that same argument in the thread. And I've been making it for centuries. So nyah.
posted by Eideteker at 3:45 PM on May 13, 2007


Generally people who come to mefi with the single intent to get their views across on politics or religion rarely make good contributors. The site would be better without them.

Couldn't agree with you more.
posted by jason's_planet at 4:02 PM on May 13, 2007


Jesus H. Christ, it's racist to say that there are nasty things about gentiles in the Talmud and post-Talmudic commentators? Yeah, most of them have been compiled by those with anti-semitic leanings, but who do you expect to do it, the Jewish Press?
posted by greatgefilte at 4:02 PM on May 13, 2007


I agree that the post was out of line-- it bothered me. I wouldn't say it's antisemitism. Ignorant and inflammatory, maybe, but not bigoted.

It's easy to overlook such posts in long, emotionally charged, threads. So thanks, motty, for bringing this up.
posted by nilihm at 4:02 PM on May 13, 2007


Sweet, all we need is for someone to crap on the Muslims and we can call this the Enlightened Intolerance Hat Trick Weekend!
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 4:06 PM on May 13, 2007


motty, the MeFi etiquette is to flag the post by clicking on the exclamation mark in the brackets, and then choosing your reason. Or if you're really pissed off, point it out here on the grey, like you did. If the poster is found guilty of high crimes by a majority or an admin we burn him at the stake or exile him, and there is popcorn during the heated deliberations. My popcorn recipe is great: cooked in peanut oil with about a half teaspoon of dark roasted sesame oil added. Sometimes I go crazy and add grated parmesan cheese on top.
posted by tula at 4:15 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


[PARMESANIST]
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:16 PM on May 13, 2007


so, are we tired of these threads yet?
posted by pyramid termite at 4:20 PM on May 13, 2007


You know, tula, that sounds like a great popcorn recipe. Thanks.
posted by motty at 4:20 PM on May 13, 2007


eh - seems as though if something egregiously racist is posted in the blue it's not such a bad idea to have it pointed out as such. (*not egregist*, btb.)
posted by ~ at 4:26 PM on May 13, 2007


[PARMESANIST]

I read that as [PARMESATANIST]. A group I would join.
posted by dness2 at 4:29 PM on May 13, 2007


Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews, something my own rabbi omitted to mention at any point

Why are you using the present tense here when Maimonides lived 800-odd years ago and his philosophies are not followed by all Jews today?

so, are we tired of these threads yet?

so you continually piss on religion-related threads and complain about their quality of discussion within.

Nice racket you've got going there.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 4:30 PM on May 13, 2007


I agree with the callout; linking to a site which lists the Protocols of the Elders of Zion among its sources, and on its links page contains such gems as "I think that these following sites are right about some things" (link follows to Stormfront and David Duke) and "it's certainly worth considering the arguments of Holocaust Revisionism" is offensive and disturbing and provocative. (Sorry I can't quote directly, the site's on Geocities and it's predictably gone down from the Mefi-related traffic.) I've flagged Brian B's post already, but just to reiterate here that I think the callout is justified.
posted by jokeefe at 4:31 PM on May 13, 2007


Jesus H. Christ, it's racist to say that there are nasty things about gentiles in the Talmud and post-Talmudic commentators?

No, of course not. You did it nicely in that thread. What's ignorant and racist is to link to a disengenuous Stormfront-friendly site and call it "a comparative archive on Jews and Judaism."
posted by mediareport at 4:33 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


I ain't never heard, seen nor smelled an issue that was so dangerous it couldn't be talked about.
posted by Captaintripps at 4:36 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


Jesus H. Christ, it's racist to say that there are nasty things about gentiles in the Talmud and post-Talmudic commentators? Yeah, most of them have been compiled by those with anti-semitic leanings, but who do you expect to do it, the Jewish Press?

There's a difference between asserting that there are nasty things about gentiles and linking to an anti-semitic, holocaust-revision supporting site, I think.

Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews, something my own rabbi omitted to mention at any point

Why are you using the present tense here when Maimonides lived 800-odd years ago and his philosophies are not followed by all Jews today?


It's a literary convention to describe the actions or arguments of texts in the present tense. Henry James is dead, but we would still write something like "James describes, in Portrait of a Lady, Isabel Archer's moment of indecision."
posted by jokeefe at 4:38 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B was of course in error to link to a questionable site, but I find the howling over it to be avoidance behavior over his silly Maimonides jab at reactionary Orthodox Jews.

Jab at the reactionaries, and they jab back.

But either his point about Maimonides teachings stands or it doesn't. I don't know and could care less, I just find the reaction here to be quite interesting, in a forensic sense.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 4:39 PM on May 13, 2007


Christianity is anti-semitic.
posted by hermitosis at 4:43 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Previous Brian B.-related beer and popcorn MeTa thread. Something about saliva and foreheads something something.
posted by Sonny Jim at 4:44 PM on May 13, 2007


so you continually piss on religion-related threads and complain about their quality of discussion within

please link to where i pissed on the one being discussed here ... or doesn't the truth matter?
posted by pyramid termite at 4:45 PM on May 13, 2007


I linked to a book by Shahak, which was linked from this site which appears to be a scholarly archive with disclaimers, although seemingly misrepresented by some here. (If they are to be believed, then by extension, Yahoo is therefore in league with the conspiracy offered by motty and anything on Yahoo should be discredited). It appears that Motty was angry at my comment that associated someone's observation of Scientology with the morally superior commentary of Miamonides (as I am always keen on providing historical context for ideas, if I know them), and they want to remove the evidence. Nevermind that Scientology was bashed upside and down again, and not even by me. I do understand the childish and ignorant tendency to censor a legitimate citation when proof is offered, but would never be stupid enough to condone it. Might as well disband the internet.
posted by Brian B. at 4:48 PM on May 13, 2007


Heywood Mogroot, I am neither an Orthodox nor, I like to think, a reactionary Jew. But I know antisemitism when I see it. And BB's point about Maimonides does not stand, since he seems to me to be suggesting that Maimonides says that it is ok to kill non-Jews, when this is in fact not the case. It is not necessary to 'be' anything in order to figure this out. Reading comprehension skills suffice.
posted by motty at 4:49 PM on May 13, 2007


Christianity is anti-semitic.

I'll bite.
posted by niles at 4:49 PM on May 13, 2007


Sweet, all we need is for someone to crap on the Muslims and we can call this the Enlightened Intolerance Hat Trick Weekend!

Good thing he didn't insult the prophet Muhammad (pb&j).

Ok, now do Jesus!
posted by Krrrlson at 4:50 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


Reading comprehension skills suffice

Insults don't help.

In your into to this thread you misrepresented Brian B's contribution to the thread about Maimonides :

"explaining why, apparently, Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews"

Was this intentional or accidental?
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 4:51 PM on May 13, 2007


Sonny Jim, well done!
posted by Brian B. at 4:52 PM on May 13, 2007


[never thought I'd + krrlson, but I hadn't seen the (pb&j) jab yet].
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 4:52 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B was of course in error to link to a questionable site, but I find the howling over it to be avoidance behavior over his silly Maimonides jab at reactionary Orthodox Jews

I think the howling is justified; about Maimonides, that's another discussion. I'm unhappy about the linking, and then the disingenious claims about it just being an article archive with "many of the books and articles written by Jews themselves!" The Maimonides debate is actually interesting, but it's a sideline to the real problem here: Brian B. linked to a not just questionable but an openly racist site. This is the issue for me, period.
posted by jokeefe at 4:54 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian Bigot, you are continuing to misrepresent Maimonides as one who claims it is ok to murder non-Jews, something that historically has been a habit of career antisemites but no-one else, and now you are attempting to comment in the thread set up to discuss your own racism and bigotry.

You really do have reading comprehension issues, don't you. Shahak is wrong. You are wrong. You do not understand what Maimonides wrote. Nor did Shahak. What could your motivation possibly be?

This has nothing to do with abhorrent Scientology. This is to do with your insistence on making some false equation between the moral bankruptcy of Scientology and the moral bankruptcy of 'Judaism as falsely understood by you.' Which only goes to demonstrate your own moral bankruptcy loud and clear. But don't stop. Keep digging. Fine by me.
posted by motty at 4:55 PM on May 13, 2007


or doesn't the truth matter

please show me where I was talking about only the Scientology thread with my comment about your contributions.

btw, all I'm saying is that we could use more of this and less of this here.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 4:55 PM on May 13, 2007


On preview: A "scholarly archive"? You have got to be fucking kidding me. Give it up, Brian.
posted by jokeefe at 4:56 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B. linked to a not just questionable but an openly racist site. This is the issue for me, period.

that is fallacious for the purpose of discussion, since BrianB's link did not go to the entire site in question, just the Israel Shahak piece on Maimonides.

Either the Maimonides link itself is apropos, accurate, etc. or it is not. motty's continual character assassination on Brian B for this, well, needs no further comment. Either you see it or you don't, obviously.

But I do admire motty's ability to take Brian B's "spin it as you wish" and run with it as he has.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 5:00 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Yeah, as much I dislike Maimonides (was more of a Nachmanides guy back in the day), that site is far from honourable, though as HM points out, the Shahak text is certainly has more bona fides.
posted by greatgefilte at 5:01 PM on May 13, 2007


please show me where I was talking about only the Scientology thread with my comment about your contributions.

"so you continually piss on religion-related threads"
posted by pyramid termite at 5:01 PM on May 13, 2007


"I read that as [PARMESATANIST]. A group I would join."

Holy crap, I think you've just invented the counter-religion for the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
posted by Eideteker at 5:03 PM on May 13, 2007 [14 favorites]


Oy vey, this kvetch aout this mamzer BrianB's racist chutzpah is making me plotz!
posted by Second Account For Making Jokey Comments at 5:04 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Hi Heywood Mogroot. You'll need your reading comprehension skills. Any problems you have, please post some more. We'll explain the bits that are too hard for you.
posted by motty at 5:07 PM on May 13, 2007


so you continually piss on religion-related threads

'continually' here:

"so you continually piss on religion-related threads"

is not referring only the Scientology thread , p.t.

this is silly
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 5:11 PM on May 13, 2007


(I wonder what Paulsc has to say about all this)
posted by forallmankind at 5:12 PM on May 13, 2007


To make clear what we're arguing about, let me post the full text of the introduction to Alabaster's Archive. That is the site linked to by Brian B. with this phrase: "It's a comparative archive on Jews and Judaism with mostly Jewish authors. Please don't hurt them or destroy their books." He presents as a neutral, factual site. Here is the full text of the introduction from the front page of Alabaster's archive:
This Archive comprises a collection of texts which I have found useful to my study of Jews and Judaism. They were selected for their often surprising contrast in perspective compared to mainstream news and historical sources.

All of these texts have been verified against hardcopy originals and most were first prepared for the web by this editor, including The Zionist Plan for the Middle East and the less commonly known translation of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, The Jewish Peril.

No claims are made regarding the factual nature of these documents, merely that what was printed on paper is accurately reproduced in these editions.

Copyright has been granted by permission for some texts, a couple of publications have been discontinued, a few works were not published with copyright reserved, and the remainder are published here for the purposes of non-profit scholarly review and critical community education pursuant to the "fair use" clause in American copyright law.

This archive is always growing—typically one or more papers per week—and its goal is to present a serious full-text research resource of scholarly materials devoted to Jewish and Israeli religion, history, extremism, fundamentalism, and global socio-political power.

Best wishes and good reading,

Alabaster
This is anti-semitism. No bones about it.
posted by Kattullus at 5:14 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


You'll make your points better by keeping a civil tongue, motty. I for one am pretty sick of the internets filling to the brim of their tubes with people questioning each other's reading comprehension.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:15 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


"so you continually piss on religion-related threads"

is not referring only the Scientology thread , p.t.

spin it all you want, heywood, it was a lie, and it's been proven BY YOURSELF to be one, even though you don't have the guts to actually admit it

so next time you or someone else starts complaining about my "pissing", i can disregard it as the smear campaign it is and always was

i'm not the reason these threads go bad, so you can just quit lying about it

over and OUT
posted by pyramid termite at 5:18 PM on May 13, 2007


We'll explain the bits that are too hard for you

The question boils down to comparability of in-group/out-group morality divides between what Maimonides taught 800 years ago (and that is apparently still ascribed to by the Orthodox community) and Hubbard's "fair game" outlook wrt non-Scientology enemies.

Your "Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews" in this metatalk's into is a gross misstatement of Brian B's original point about this parallellsim and I wish you would address it.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 5:19 PM on May 13, 2007


How could "continually" be possibly referring to a single post by you, p.t? Hello? Hello?
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 5:20 PM on May 13, 2007


He presents as a neutral, factual site.

That is a another lie.
posted by Brian B. at 5:20 PM on May 13, 2007


I read that as [PARMESATANIST].

Gratin' Satan, eh?
posted by jonmc at 5:22 PM on May 13, 2007


which appears to be a scholarly archive with disclaimers, although seemingly misrepresented by some here.

Actually, it's pretty much precisely what you did, from my reading of your description of the site, both in the original thread and in this MeTa thread.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:23 PM on May 13, 2007


Anyway, why must these threads always be about diests?
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:24 PM on May 13, 2007


Better than being about dios.
posted by Jimbob at 5:24 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


You make a good point, Astro Zombie. When Brian B. wrote the following:

"It is perfectly ok to lie to, cheat, steal from, or even kill a non-Scientologist."

I had no idea that Hubbard was familiar with Maimonides.

and Heywood Mogroot described my characterisation of BB's comment as "explaining why, apparently, Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews" as a misrepresentation, you are indeed quite right to point out that it is not necessarily reading comprehension skills issues that are going on and that it was wrong of me to jump to such a premature conculusion.

Thank you for the clarification.
posted by motty at 5:25 PM on May 13, 2007


now you are attempting to comment in the thread set up to discuss your own racism and bigotry.

Um, is he not allowed to defend himself?
posted by poxuppit at 5:27 PM on May 13, 2007 [4 favorites]


motty wrote:

You make a good point, Astro Zombie. When Brian B. wrote the following:

"It is perfectly ok to lie to, cheat, steal from, or even kill a non-Scientologist."


I never wrote that either.
posted by Brian B. at 5:28 PM on May 13, 2007


I sort of agree with Motty, but I smell a flame out coming, and can't help but salivate.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:28 PM on May 13, 2007


Don't salivate too much or you'll put out the flames. Unless, of course, you salivate gasoline, in which case drool con brio.
posted by jonmc at 5:29 PM on May 13, 2007


As a result of my drinking habit, I salivate 151 proof rum.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:30 PM on May 13, 2007


For the record, motty was wrong and is trying to get even. He found a few chumps to assist.
posted by Brian B. at 5:30 PM on May 13, 2007


*kisses Astro Zombie passionately*
posted by jonmc at 5:31 PM on May 13, 2007


motty: the issue, to me, is that Maimonides, whatever he says [assuming it lines up with greatgefilte's comment], is not an Absolute Moral Authority for ALL JEWS LIVING TODAY, while your:

"Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews"

implies that Brian B is asserting that Maimonides' teachings are moral law for ALL JEWS LIVING TODAY.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 5:31 PM on May 13, 2007


He presents as a neutral, factual site.

That is a another lie.


Okay, Brian B., let me post everything you've said about the site so far, including your links:
motty, there is evidence. Spin it as you wish.
posted by Brian B. at 4:14 PM on May 13 [+] [!]

in case it's not immediately transparent, brian b.'s link above in support of his earlier skeetchy statement is to the protocols of the elders of zion. holy creepy shit.)

It's a link to Israel Shahak's book, actually.
posted by Brian B. at 4:44 PM on May 13 [+] [!]

How embarassing for me. It's several links above the ones to the "protocols".

Embarrassing for you indeed. It's a comparative archive on Jews and Judaism with mostly Jewish authors. Please don't hurt them or destroy their books.
posted by Brian B. at 5:26 PM on May 13 [+] [!]

mediareport, they don't reference it as factual, see the disclaimer on the main page. I can't tell if you are lying or just misinformed.
posted by Brian B. at 6:53 PM on May 13 [+] [!]
posted by Kattullus at 5:33 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Well, let's get some clarification on this, because if it okay, I've got some killing to do.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:33 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


The site would be better without them.

I agree, and I'd add that the site would be better without comments like "Brian Bigot" or "We'll explain the bits that are too hard for you."

I know that sometimes, it's difficult to achieve respectful discourse. I've been there. I sympathize. But reach for it anyway.
posted by cribcage at 5:33 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Should have read: "said so far in the original thread" (I really shouldn't be doing this while I have a sinus infection, but some things you just can't let slide by).
posted by Kattullus at 5:34 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian Bigot, you are continuing to misrepresent Maimonides as one who claims it is ok to murder non-Jews, something that historically has been a habit of career antisemites but no-one else, and now you are attempting to comment in the thread set up to discuss your own racism and bigotry.

This is approaching libel. I respectfully ask that anyone else who does not agree with the above reaction distance themselves because it's getting personal and a target is being selected.
posted by Brian B. at 5:34 PM on May 13, 2007


I never wrote that either.

Sorry, Brian. Yes you did.
posted by motty at 5:36 PM on May 13, 2007


Nope, I quoted it for context.
posted by Brian B. at 5:37 PM on May 13, 2007


Thanks cribcage. I'm as guilty as being too flip and abrasive as anyone. The threads aren't the problem, it's the dialogue, and we are in control of that, modulo false-flag and other anti-social online twattage.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 5:38 PM on May 13, 2007


All I know if that Maimonides was responsible for that "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime" aphorism, and I haven't trusted him since.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:38 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


I don't know, Brian B. seems to have the anti-semitic patter down pretty much perfectly, and I can't figure out why the hell Heywood Mogroot is so interested in defending the wiggle room that anti-semitic assholes often try to give themselves.
posted by OmieWise at 5:39 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


(prays for "no you di-int response)
posted by forallmankind at 5:40 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B. is so obviously a troll; maybe a crypto-antisemite, but more of a troll. Motty -- please stop responding to him, you're just encouraging his trollery.
posted by Mid at 5:40 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


I dislike character assassination of all stripes.

brian b hasn't said anything in this thread or its antecedent to raise a flag, other than describing the site he pulled the article from an "archive".
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 5:41 PM on May 13, 2007


I see motty apparently isn't going to respond to my above.

Good day.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 5:42 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B. seems to have the anti-semitic patter down pretty much perfectly,

Patter? Let's call it 'shtick,' just to noodge him.
posted by jonmc at 5:43 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Anybody wanna go for knishes?
posted by greatgefilte at 5:45 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


DID NOT!

DID TOO!

DID NOT!

/only read last few comments in thread
posted by Kwine at 5:46 PM on May 13, 2007


and some noodle kugel?
posted by jonmc at 5:47 PM on May 13, 2007


Mmm, lokshen...
posted by greatgefilte at 5:48 PM on May 13, 2007


Three thousand years of beautiful arguments for killing gentiles: from Moses Maimonides to Sandy Koufax, you're damn right I'm living in the past!
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:48 PM on May 13, 2007 [5 favorites]


it's getting personal and a target is being selected.
posted by Brian B. at 5:34 PM on May 13 [+]


are you still selecting your target, Brian?
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 5:49 PM on May 13, 2007


Wow, I'd forgotten what a clueless dick Brian B. was in that evolution post. He may well be an anti-semite, but I also think he probably just doesn't understand a lot of what he talks about.
posted by OmieWise at 5:49 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Good call, jon.
posted by OmieWise at 5:50 PM on May 13, 2007


I am the target, partridge. Read motty's quote.
posted by Brian B. at 5:50 PM on May 13, 2007


Think nothing of it, boychik.
posted by jonmc at 5:50 PM on May 13, 2007


Omiewise, I don't remember you in that thread. Perhaps you could link a comment or two.
posted by Brian B. at 5:51 PM on May 13, 2007


I don't think I commented in that thread either, but that doesn't preclude me from reading it and thinking you came off as a raging asshole, Brian. Perhaps you are just not aware of how you present yourself to other.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:53 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Astro Zombie, no love lost there, but if it wasn't to you, why are you so offended?
posted by Brian B. at 5:56 PM on May 13, 2007


clueless dick meet raging asshole... erm
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 5:56 PM on May 13, 2007


Astro Zombie, no love lost there, but if it wasn't to you, why are you so offended?

I have very dainty sensibilities.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:57 PM on May 13, 2007


raging asshole

Scorsese's abortive venture into pornography, of course.
posted by jonmc at 5:57 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Yes, the Jooz are targeting you, Brian B. It's clearly a conspiracy. Run, before they eat your brain.
posted by Krrrlson at 5:58 PM on May 13, 2007


I have very dainty sensibilities.

Or you really meant another thread somewhere.
posted by Brian B. at 5:59 PM on May 13, 2007


Also, I thought he meant the Oscar-winning Chinese film "Clueless Dick, Raging Asshole."
posted by Krrrlson at 5:59 PM on May 13, 2007


It is just me, or are Brian's points increasingly hard to parse?
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:00 PM on May 13, 2007


Well, I'm going to have to go ahead and stick by Brian B, for obvious reasons. I assume blue_beetle is with us as well.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 6:03 PM on May 13, 2007


aww - he's not going for the sympathy vote based on mental instability is he? Boo!
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 6:03 PM on May 13, 2007


Also, I thought he meant the Oscar-winning Chinese film "Clueless Dick, Raging Asshole."

Which thread did we disagree in Krrrlson?
posted by Brian B. at 6:05 PM on May 13, 2007


It is just me, or are Brian's points increasingly hard to parse?

if jooz were eating your brain, you'd be increasingly hard to parse, too
posted by pyramid termite at 6:07 PM on May 13, 2007


"Sweet, all we need is for someone to crap on the Muslims and we can call this the Enlightened Intolerance Hat Trick Weekend!"

I've crapped all over Islam and Xianity around here too, and even Hinduism and Wicca from time to time. But hey, if you want a special weekend, let me reiterate that Muhammad was a pedophile. Are you happy now?

And yes, Brian B. is clearly being targeted by fans of Judaism (for lack of a better term; I doubt most of his critics are practicing halachic Jews).
posted by davy at 6:08 PM on May 13, 2007


*breaks down, reads thread*

Oh, you're the forehead salivation guy! Don't let the haters get you down, Brian B. I'm glad you're in my life.
posted by Kwine at 6:09 PM on May 13, 2007


clueless dick meet raging asshole... erm
posted by The_Partridge_Family


Sounds like a fun Saturday night to me!
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:09 PM on May 13, 2007


dnab, it's a 'clueless' dick remember? It'd probably try to penetrate someone's nostril. Then the raging asshole would get pissed and attack the mailman, but it has no teeth so it's just gum the poor guy black and blue.
posted by jonmc at 6:11 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


then call 1-800-BRIAN-HATEZ-JOOZ
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 6:12 PM on May 13, 2007


Okay, so I've ctrl+f searched through all the texts of Maimonides that I could find on the internet for his views on murder*, the only place where he mentions it is in verse 289 of the Negative Commandments of the Mishneh Torah where he says: "Not to kill an innocent person, as it is written "thou shalt not murder" (Exodus 20,12; Deuteronomy 5,16)." I did this haphazardly and I'm sure there are texts I missed. But as far as I can tell, Maimonides was dead against murder.

That said, that's not the issue here. Linking to a site that is obviously anti-semitic without noting its anti-semitism it's is not the same as saying "Christ killer" but it's the same as saying "hey, I've got this book, Protocols of the Elders of Zion... it's a new translation and everything."


*looking for the words 'kill' and 'murder.'
posted by Kattullus at 6:12 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


So Katullus, if the only place I can find a notation that "grass is very often greenish" is on a site put up by a group you dislike, I should just go on letting people say "All grass is purple!", right?
posted by davy at 6:18 PM on May 13, 2007


Well, there is such a thing as confirming from multiple sources. If only one source says grass is green, and that source hates purple, I would start to suspect grass might be purple.
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:20 PM on May 13, 2007


davy - No one cared the first time; I mean, consider the source.

I still don't get the (pb&j) thing.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 6:22 PM on May 13, 2007


fans of Judaism

oy, that Moses is so dreamy...
posted by jonmc at 6:25 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Here's a link to Shahak from a bible site, which may please Kuttullus less or more, I can't tell. Now she can argue that Christians are antisemites if she dares.
posted by Brian B. at 6:26 PM on May 13, 2007


dnab, it's a 'clueless' dick remember? It'd probably try to penetrate someone's nostril. Then the raging asshole would get pissed and attack the mailman, but it has no teeth so it's just gum the poor guy black and blue.
posted by jonmc


you owe me a new keyboard.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:27 PM on May 13, 2007


The grass is green, Jews drink Christian blood and think they are allowed to murder non-Jews with impunity. Welcome to the wonderful world of davy's truisms.
posted by Krrrlson at 6:28 PM on May 13, 2007


Guilt by association fallacy, for anyone who wonders how miseducated my opponents might be.
posted by Brian B. at 6:30 PM on May 13, 2007


The grass is green, Jews drink Christian blood and think they are allowed to murder non-Jews with impunity

No, no, no...the grass is green because the Jews water it with the blood of the Christians they are allowed to kill. Did you misplace the Handbook?
posted by jonmc at 6:30 PM on May 13, 2007


I don't think Brian B is an anti-semite. I just think he's got a screw loose. Either way the site doesn't need him.
posted by empath at 6:31 PM on May 13, 2007


I think we were all a little curious.
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:31 PM on May 13, 2007


I don't think Brian B is an anti-semite. I just think he's got a screw loose. Either way the site doesn't need him.

Can't argue with someone who speaks for the site, unless they really don't, and just think they do and have a screw loose.
posted by Brian B. at 6:33 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B., you know the Protocols of the Elders of Zion are an antisemitic fake, right?
posted by LobsterMitten at 6:33 PM on May 13, 2007


Alvy: this should help you out.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 6:33 PM on May 13, 2007


it's the proctologists of the elders of zion you really need to watch out for
posted by pyramid termite at 6:36 PM on May 13, 2007 [4 favorites]


Is there something I should be doing about this?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:37 PM on May 13, 2007 [7 favorites]


Hm, interesting, I've been looking into some other legal opinions of Maimonides regarding gentiles. Interesting stuff, to say the least. I'll post some in the original thread.
posted by greatgefilte at 6:37 PM on May 13, 2007


(also, whenever there's some grand conspiracy theory, it's always the Jews, the Jews, the Jews. Just for variety,c an we blame someone else for a change? I'm thinking maybe the Norwegians.)
posted by jonmc at 6:38 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Brian B.: Here's a link to Shahak from a bible site, which may please Kuttullus less or more, I can't tell. Now she can argue that Christians are antisemites if she dares.

It's also a conspiracy theory site that includes such gems as The Illuminati and The Council on Foreign Relations. It seems to rather bolster my argument, don't you think?

(and my wife demands that I mention that I'm a dude)
posted by Kattullus at 6:40 PM on May 13, 2007


LobsterMitten, I have never heard of Protocols except in title, but I thought it was the pro-apocalyptic book Timothy McVeigh used to blow up the building in Oklahoma. Turns out it was another book, probably mentioned in the same phrase. Either way, the Shahak book I linked is apparently undisputed, as well as the general idea. It roundly appears to be a bluff for those who are blind. Maimonides obviously provided for anti-gentile bigotry on his own, in a historical context to be sure, but highly regarded nonetheless.
posted by Brian B. at 6:42 PM on May 13, 2007


Heywood, you tell me that "Your 'Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews' in this metatalk's intro is a gross mistatement of Brian B's original point about this parallellism and I wish you would address it.". (typos fixed)

But I already have. I do not believe that I could address that point more if I wanted to. And I don't. Truth is, I didn't even want to get into this nonsense in the first place, but I have this weird problem with people spreading abject lies about my cousins the frummers.

This is getting awful boring now. Please come with a new point, if you have one. Actually, on second thoughts, please don't.
posted by motty at 6:43 PM on May 13, 2007


Here's a link to Shahak from a bible site, which may please Kuttullus less or more, I can't tell. Now she can argue that Christians are antisemites if she dares.

Funnily, Christian anti-semites are mentioned n the very page you link to...

Jewish-American intellectuals abandoned liberalism for a series of demented alliances with the Christian (antisemitic) right ...
posted by Jon Mitchell at 6:43 PM on May 13, 2007


The fact of the matter is that (to quote I forget who in Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice) "The Devil can cite Scripture for his purpose," as illustrated in this Xian sermon. I'll be the Stormfront upholds the theories of Gravity and Special Relativity too, does that make them Nazi doctrines? (And to be clear, speaking only for myself, I think the Protocols are fake.)

And Alvy, huh? To quote section of that Wikipedia article headed "Evidence that Aisha was nine":

The hadith collections of Bukhari (d. 870) and Muslim b. al-Hajjaj (d. 875) are in general regarded as the most authentic by Sunni Muslims. Both quote Aisha herself claiming she was six or seven at the time of her marriage and nine when the marriage was consummated.

Are you disputing the isnad of those hadiths? Or are you saying the Wikipedist who said it made shit up (and wiser folks let it stand)? Or are you just picking on me personally, trolling me to "watch" me get all confused again?

Um, Jessamyn, if you feel you must do something you might close this Metatalk thread. I wouldn't object if you deleted all the comments in the referred-to thread in the Blue that ain't about Scientology specifically; it'd at least be "fair" and even-handed "censorship". Or you could just go swimming and ignore this whole shitstorm in a thimble, which'd be my personal recommendation. (I'm delaying washing dishes now.)
posted by davy at 6:43 PM on May 13, 2007


I thought it was the pro-apocalyptic book Timothy McVeigh used to blow up the building in Oklahoma.

i think jessamyn should get a lot more respect here ... libraries must be fucking dangerous
posted by pyramid termite at 6:44 PM on May 13, 2007 [4 favorites]




Brian B. please do us all a favor in the future and take five seconds to investigate these "scholarly archives" you continue to link to.

Protip: Any site that hosts a copy of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion and doesn't mention in huge bold letters that it's antisemitic bullshit isn't a completely reliable site.
posted by crashlanding at 6:45 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


*suspects motty is sitting around on ratty sofa, smoking pot and listening to Pink Floyd*
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 6:47 PM on May 13, 2007


It seems to rather bolster my argument, don't you think?


Actually, you don't have an argument. It just means that you'll avoid the reference.
posted by Brian B. at 6:48 PM on May 13, 2007


davy: It was the last one, the personal picking on thing (I'm avoiding folding laundry :D).
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 6:49 PM on May 13, 2007


This is from wikipedia on Shahak and it sounds awfully familiar:

"David Duke mourned Shahak, stating he had exposed "numerous examples of hateful Judaic laws... that permit Jews to cheat, to steal, to rob, to kill, to rape, to lie, even to enslave Christians,"[26] and dedicated his book Jewish Supremacism to him.[27][28] In the introduction to the 2002 edition of the book Norton Mezvinsky, Shahak's co-author on Jewish Fundamentalism in Israel, writes that antisemites and antisemitic groups "utilize unduly Shahak's criticisms in trying to justify their hatred of Jews. They have continued to do this either by citing and/or using out-of-context some of Shahak's points.""
posted by crashlanding at 6:50 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


LobsterMitten, I have never heard of Protocols except in title, but I thought it was the pro-apocalyptic book Timothy McVeigh used to blow up the building in Oklahoma.

Nope, Turner Diaries.

A friend of mine died in the Murrah building.
posted by dw at 6:54 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B. please do us all a favor in the future and take five seconds to investigate these "scholarly archives" you continue to link to.


crashlanding, that's a civil request, although the messenger is not the point here.
posted by Brian B. at 6:55 PM on May 13, 2007


the messenger is not the point here.

I thought the point was that links to hate groups, or groups spreading hate propaganda, don't usually stay on Mefi. So the messenger (ie the site you linked to) is the point of this thread.
posted by LobsterMitten at 6:57 PM on May 13, 2007


Wow, did the Jews run over his dog?
posted by Many bubbles at 6:59 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Not just run over, they utterly slaughtered the Canine-ites.
posted by greatgefilte at 7:00 PM on May 13, 2007 [7 favorites]


(Though whether that actually happened is a bone of contention amongst Near Eastern archaeologists)
posted by greatgefilte at 7:03 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Brian: I've been giving you a bit of a hard time but, despite the dubious accolade of being dubbed a clueless dick *and* a raging asshole in one thread (not mention 2x "uninformed prick" in the evolution post), I still think your "stop salivating on your forehead" comment is fucking hilarious and I will always love you for that. Give my regards to the ADL :-)
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 7:03 PM on May 13, 2007


the Shahak book I linked is apparently undisputed, as well as the general idea.

Also, that's not true. For example, the wikipedia page that you linked to about Shahak describes the ongoing dispute over his book.

I think crashlanding expressed the common sense view here: if a site links to the Protocols as the work of a Jewish writer, or as an interesting bit of Jewish history, that's a tip off that it is a crackpot conspiracy site at best, and a dedicated hate site at worst. Presenting Shahak's work as if it were uncontroversially a statement of facts seems to be in this category too.
posted by LobsterMitten at 7:03 PM on May 13, 2007


I thought the point was that links to hate groups, or groups spreading hate propaganda, don't usually stay on Mefi. So the messenger (ie the site you linked to) is the point of this thread.

You mean censoring a citation. That would be odd if you can eliminate all the citations you disagree with and then claim that someone is wrong because they can't prove it.
posted by Brian B. at 7:04 PM on May 13, 2007


Ok, so Brian B., it turns out, is kind of a creepy douchetruck.

However, I would like to say that Judaism is a religion and not a "race" within any reasonable meaning of the term (and therefore "racist" is the wrong word).

Sorry for interjecting this. My family is very religiously mixed and also scarred from stuff like that.

Back to your regularly scheduled callout.
posted by psmith at 7:07 PM on May 13, 2007


Okay, let's agree then. All of the cowardly fascists who would censor a citation, state your agreement. It's apparent who opposes, because they actually made the attempt.
posted by Brian B. at 7:07 PM on May 13, 2007


You offer that site as if it were good evidence for your point. Other people have given reasons why it is not good evidence.

Now you say "oops, sorry; I was misled." Then we think "ok, reasonable person."
posted by LobsterMitten at 7:08 PM on May 13, 2007


Hi, psmith. You can say that Judaism is a religion and not a "race" as much as you like, but the ghosts of my secular non-religious cousins who nevertheless perished in the Holocaust would like a word with you. Just saying.
posted by motty at 7:10 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Is there something I should be doing about this?

Well, I remember amberglow, I believe, once arguing that Metafilter had a very high tolerance for homophobia, whereas anyone who posted anti-Semitic comments would be banned immediately. Brian B. has already demonstrated his intellectual dishonesty by spouting nonsense and nitpicking to dodge the accusations, and he persists in linking to racist and conspiracy sites, which he insists are legitimate, in order to prove whatever point he thinks he's making. This makes him either an anti-Semite or a troll. I guess we'll find out if Metafilter has a consistent policy or not.

Probably not, since dear leader, lest we forget, loves him some edgy Holocaust humour.
posted by Krrrlson at 7:10 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Motty, so did mine. You have no trump card here.
posted by psmith at 7:12 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B. has already demonstrated his intellectual dishonesty by spouting nonsense and nitpicking to dodge the accusations, and he persists in linking to racist and conspiracy sites,

I won the argument, hands down.
posted by Brian B. at 7:13 PM on May 13, 2007


Actually, you don't have an argument. It just means that you'll avoid the reference.

My argument, Brian B., is that the references you cite for your argument that in judaism it's considered fine and dandy to kill non-jews are anti-semitic claptrap. As I said in my first comment in this thread in reference to Alabaster's Archive: "This is anti-semitism. No bones about it." You presented that site as a neutral, scholarly archive hosting reputable work. It is not.

While I'm at it, here's an article [pdf] from the Anti-Defamation League refuting "attempts to denigrate Judaism by quoting from classical rabbinic works" such as the works of Israel Shahak.
posted by Kattullus at 7:18 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Hi, jessamyn. I don't know what, if anything you should be doing about this, and perhaps there is nothing that you should be doing, but comments like this which contain blatantly antisemitic content, in this case asserting that Maimonides thought it was ok for Jews to murder non-Jews, are likely to continue to be flagged by those of us who get upset by them.

At no point did Maimonides - or any other Jewish religious figure - say it was ok for Jews to murder non-Jews. Brian B.'s comment suggests to the contrary that he did. That makes me really really upset. Not only that, but this particular antisemitic slur has a long history. Essentially it's the blood libel all over again. Deal with it as you see fit.
posted by motty at 7:19 PM on May 13, 2007


motty, saying that Hitler thought Jews were a race doesn't show that Jews really are a race. Consider that some people might want to use the idea that there's no "Jewish race" as a way to move against the very views you find objectionable.

And Jessamyn, I think you can safely de-link Brian B's link to the "archive", without unduly stifling reasonable discourse on the site.
posted by LobsterMitten at 7:19 PM on May 13, 2007


Oh, Christ, both that thread and this one are, like, the absolute bottom of Metafilter idiocy. Raging, incoherent arguments against religion? Bitter personal attacks? An assorted grab bag of tu quoques, ad hominems, and links to batshit sources presented as credible? A coterie of medication cases all trying to either out-troll or out blather each other?
Check, check, check, chiggity-check.

"Is there something I should be doing about this?"

Close both that abortion of a thread and this one?
posted by klangklangston at 7:19 PM on May 13, 2007


the messenger is not the point here

It really is though. Before your link I had never heard of Shahak and with just a little bit of research I discovered that he is quite a controversial figure. Many, including the ADL, consider him an anti-semite. Now I'm not familiar with his work in the slightest and there are plenty of respected people that have praised his work. Then again, David Duke has also praised his work so that's a black mark right there.

I can see how someone who writes a book that is critical of Jewish history can be labeled an anti-semite and I can also see how such criticisms can be blown out of proportion by hate groups and the like and how they can be used as "proof" of the hate groups' ideologies.

Your linking to hate sites and lack of multiple sources does not help your cause. The fact that Duke's statement on Shahak somewhat mirrors the sentiment that you are quoting from his book combined with the assertion from Shahak's collaborator that hate groups have taken his work completely out of context really doesn't help your case.

The main issue here is your unwillingness to concede that perhaps you shouldn't have linked to that site and maybe should have taken a few more minutes to find a reputable source before you hit post.
posted by crashlanding at 7:19 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


damn you, psmith - I'm trying to keep count here!

OK, according the esteemed members of metafilter, Brian B. is; an "uninformed prick," an "uninformed prick," a "clueless dick," a "raging asshole" and "kind of a creepy douchetruck."

No more though, please - this is turning into a Spanish Inquisition sketch.
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 7:21 PM on May 13, 2007


I won the argument, hands down.

Well as we all know, there's really only one way to prove that.
posted by Partial Law at 7:23 PM on May 13, 2007


"David Duke has also praised his work so that's a black mark right there."

Uh-oh, I bet David Duke agrees with me that grass is often greenish. PSSST: Hey everybody, you'd better say GRASS IS ALWAYS PURPLE or you'll "prove" yourself an antisemite!
posted by davy at 7:24 PM on May 13, 2007


davy, your analogies are nothing but nonsense
posted by crashlanding at 7:26 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


At least the pop-corn's good.
posted by dazed_one at 7:27 PM on May 13, 2007


Sorry for the double, but I just want to make my last comment a little clearer. I don't give a shit what David Duke thinks about grass or whether his favorite author is Tom Clancy. When it comes to issues that involve race, religion, or sexual orientation having David Duke on your side will always be a huge fucking black mark.
posted by crashlanding at 7:28 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


davy, honey? I think it's time you go sit down and have a quiet talk with your SO again. I say this in a friendly way.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:29 PM on May 13, 2007


"The main issue here is your unwillingness to concede that perhaps you shouldn't have linked to that site and maybe should have taken a few more minutes to find a reputable source before you hit post."

Huh? In these threads the main issue is that Brian B. should be tarred and feathered because he's "obviously" an Evil Nazi who wants to shove Jews into ovens. If it were as simple as you say somebody would have said it before you. (Even I didn't think of it and I'm a souper jeenyus.)
posted by davy at 7:29 PM on May 13, 2007


Oh yes, and with regards to the "should I be doing anything here" question; this is fascinating and entertaining to watch, so I find myself leaning away from the 'nuke it from orbit' deleting the comments and closing threads, but then again - it really is the only way to be sure.
posted by dazed_one at 7:31 PM on May 13, 2007


"When it comes to issues that involve race, religion, or sexual orientation having David Duke on your side will always be a huge fucking black mark."

I see my "S.O." would often win an argument with you too. Welcome, O sibling in logical imbecility!
posted by davy at 7:32 PM on May 13, 2007


Davy's objecting to the ad hominem fallacy. That davy is crazy and incoherent doesn't detract from being, on some level, correct, but he is ignoring context and, well, being crazy and incoherent.
posted by klangklangston at 7:32 PM on May 13, 2007


The main issue here is your unwillingness to concede that perhaps you shouldn't have linked to that site and maybe should have taken a few more minutes to find a reputable source before you hit post.

The main issue here is that I made my point, and quoted Maimonides from a source, and I only defended one point of contention, not the whole story. It is obviously very disturbing and I don't think defending Maimonides by way of censorship is worthwhile. Here it is again: If a Jew has coitus with a Gentile woman, whether she be a child of three or an adult, whether married or unmarried, and even if he is a minor aged only nine years and one day—because he had willful coitus with her, she must be killed, as is the case with a beast, because through her a Jew got into trouble. (Maimonides).

posted by Brian B. at 7:35 PM on May 13, 2007


I vote bannination.

Linking to Stormfront-friendly sites, being called on it, and then crying "censorship" instead of apologizing = beyond reason and harmful to MeFi.
posted by ibmcginty at 7:35 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


I won the argument, hands down.

if you have to tell us you did, you didn't
posted by pyramid termite at 7:38 PM on May 13, 2007 [5 favorites]


Please accept my apologies, The_Partridge_Family. But if you're going to keep score, please remember that no one really expects the Spanish Inquisition. It just sort of happens and then one day you find yourself totally in the soup.
posted by psmith at 7:39 PM on May 13, 2007


I was wondering how long it would take for someone to play the Holocaust card. It always seems to come in handy when making accusations (even when they are not unfounded) about anti-Semitism.

I agree with klang. This back 'n forth douchebaggery at its worst (best?).
posted by sneakin at 7:43 PM on May 13, 2007


Just ban the fucker.
posted by yhbc at 7:43 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


This is brilliant. Carry on.
posted by ob at 7:43 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


dude - if you look in the illustrated encyclopedia for "totally in the soup" you'll find a picture of Brian.

ewwwww!
posted by forallmankind at 7:43 PM on May 13, 2007


if you have to tell us you did, you didn't

If you need to resort to name calling then you can't.
posted by Brian B. at 7:44 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B, you met the criteria for FAIL, initially, with the reasoning behind your first comment.

Person 1: Group of mystical believers X are crazy!
You: Yeah, looks like they took some lessons from some contraversial scholar from the completely-irrelevant-to-the-discussion group of mystical believers Y!

It's no better than those LOL XIANS SUCK!!!1! threads, where someone comes along and points out, for reasons I still can't fathom, that muslims suck even more.

Comparing which religion is crazier is a pointless excercise, because clearly it isn't easy to come up with a definitive answer. The fact that you got your data points from a racist website only pours petrol on the fire.

So...care to enlighten us as to what important point you were trying to make with that original comment, exactly?
posted by Jimbob at 7:44 PM on May 13, 2007


Eat shit and die, you little fuckweasel.

There; I called you names, and I won.
posted by yhbc at 7:45 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


We're arguing about this when jonson is showing us the evils of teh Polar Bears? Bloodthirsty beasts do walk amongst us, they don't belong to any race or religion [NOT SPECIESIST].
posted by Salmonberry at 7:46 PM on May 13, 2007


Fool. Everyone knows polar bears are methodist.
posted by Jimbob at 7:47 PM on May 13, 2007


If quoting Maimonides gets one banned, then Maimonides is essentially banned.
posted by Brian B. at 7:47 PM on May 13, 2007


First they came for Maimonides...
posted by ibmcginty at 7:48 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Okay everybody, I know: let's have a huge net.pogrom against all the "antisemites!" And let's let Motty and these reasonable folks decide who's an antisemite!

Talk about "guilt by association": having Kahane and his ilk on your side must be -- what -- oh "A HUGE FUCKING BLACK MARK".

And speaking of "banniation", suppose I liked directly to a hate site or two?

(And dnab, KMPWA. If you agreeed with what I'm saying you'd cheer me on. I rescind my BJ invitation.)
posted by davy at 7:48 PM on May 13, 2007


No. People are just trying to figure out why you would have quoted Maimonides, except to be a troll.
posted by Jimbob at 7:49 PM on May 13, 2007


So...care to enlighten us as to what important point you were trying to make with that original comment, exactly?

If it was a true parallel, there is the enlightenment itself. I don't need to clear true comments by you.
posted by Brian B. at 7:50 PM on May 13, 2007


I see that people have started questioning the purpose of this thread, asking for it to be closed or deleted. Let me explain why this thread matters, and on the wider scale, why not letting anti-semitism, homophobia, racism and such slide by, matters.

I have a very close friend who once was on the brink of being a holocaust denier. He is kindhearted, very intelligent and highly educated. At some point he ended up reading various sites that offered "revisionist history," and he started to believe that the holocaust had not taken place the way that it was portrayed in the media. At first it was fairly innocuous, but as time wore on it became less and less so. I became seriously alarmed when he started arguing that a lot fewer than 6 million Jews had been killed by Nazi Germany, a few hundred thousands at most, that the number had been inflated for propaganda purposes. I went and tracked down original sources (the Nazis were meticulous in their documentation) and eyewitness accounts from Nazi prison guards, German civilian employees at the camps, Jewish survivors and Allied soldiers who had first come upon the camps. Because he had been reading "revisionist" websites he had never been exposed to this. He was shocked how far down the path he was.

The point of my story is that if anti-semitic propaganda is left unchallenged, good people can end up having anti-semitic views, not out of evilness, but because of ignorance. That's why this thread is important.
posted by Kattullus at 7:50 PM on May 13, 2007 [9 favorites]


I already called a net.pogrom, and all the masons, fags, trilateralists, kikes and hebes say you're a big jerk. Oh, and you're banned too, fuckstick.
posted by yhbc at 7:50 PM on May 13, 2007


However, there is no cabal.
posted by yhbc at 7:51 PM on May 13, 2007


"If quoting Maimonides gets one banned, then Maimonides is essentially banned."

Maimonides never completed his registration (likely, paypal hadn't been invented).
posted by klangklangston at 7:52 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


If it was a true parallel, there is the enlightenment itself. I don't need to clear true comments by you.

Well, then, I guess I've been told! Carry on...
posted by Jimbob at 7:52 PM on May 13, 2007


Thankyou Jimbob.
posted by Brian B. at 7:53 PM on May 13, 2007


If you need to resort to name calling then you can't.
posted by Brian B. at 7:44 PM PST on May 13


Brian, pyramid termite didn't call you a name. For your reference:

uninformed prick - empath, equalpants
clueless dick - Omnie Wise
raging asshole - Astro Zombie
kind of a creepy douchetruck - psmith
little fuckweasel/ fuckstick - yhbc
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 7:54 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


No, davy is the fuckstick.
posted by yhbc at 7:55 PM on May 13, 2007


oh fuck - this is becoming really difficult!
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 7:57 PM on May 13, 2007


Shh, don't provoke davy any further. He's already close to a hysteria over the fact that someone defended Jews.
posted by Krrrlson at 7:57 PM on May 13, 2007


Kattullus, I don't think anyone is suggesting that life should be devoid of dialogue on bigotry of all kinds. The point is more about how this thread has devolved into name calling and empty one upmanship, rather than any meaningful or remotely intellectual exchanges.

That said, those of us who have come here to observe and occasionally heckle--klang, yhbc, et al-- are bringing a lot more spice to the thread. In fact, it's come full circle and is now actually interesting to read again. So, carry on, dudes.
posted by sneakin at 7:57 PM on May 13, 2007


(And dnab, KMPWA. If you agreeed with what I'm saying you'd cheer me on. I rescind my BJ invitation.)
posted by davy


davy. I was being nice. You went off the deep end a little while ago, and said (if memory serves) something to the effect of your SO calming you down, and you'd started meds. All I'm saying is that you're being pretty incoherent, and it's pretty similar to a few weeks ago.

I was trying to be friendly.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:57 PM on May 13, 2007


If you need to resort to name calling then you can't.

i've yet to resort to calling you any names ... do not tempt me

by the way ... why would anyone read such a lengthy account of such an obscure and dubious subject such as the letters and commentary some jews have written expressing their hatred towards gentiles? ... oh, i'll admit maimonides is reasonably well known ... but then we get into the territory of "who are these people and who cares what they say?"

maybe i'm ignorant and these are well-known names in every scholarly jewish household ... i'm gentile, what would i know?

but something tells me that the author is cherrypicking some damned arcane data ... and why are you so interested in what seems to be a dull, dull monograph on a dull, dull subject to everyone but medieval and religious specialists and anti-semitic cranks?

forgive me for saying so, but you don't talk or make the arguments of a specialist
posted by pyramid termite at 7:58 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


The point of my story is that if anti-semitic propaganda is left unchallenged, good people can end up having anti-semitic views, not out of evilness, but because of ignorance. That's why this thread is important.

If you can't deal with the skeletons in your beliefs in a constructive way, as most of us must learn to do, you are only a threat to the greater good of intellectual progress itself. We can't expose a myriad of outmoded beliefs without each of us willing to put our own at risk.
posted by Brian B. at 7:59 PM on May 13, 2007


Fucking hell, davy. I hate Kahane Chai more than you will ever know how much it is possible for one person to ever hate an organisation. So thanks for lumping me in with them. Really. And my apologies for weakening the whole argument here by pointing out that one of the reasons that I am personally a bit sensitive to antisemitism is not just the fact that I am myself Jewish but that actual members of my own family were murdered for being Jewish within living memory. A pathetic excuse of course, as i am the first to admit.

Obviously this is all a reason for me to be far more laid back about antisemitic blood libels than I actually am. Mea culpa. On the other hand, I have not yet told anyone to fuck off, and I demand a medal. Because I deserve one. I really do. You have no idea.
posted by motty at 7:59 PM on May 13, 2007


(and sorry I spelt your name wrong, OmieWise)
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 7:59 PM on May 13, 2007


What about, oh, quoting Maimondides in Hebrew?

To quote greatgefilte (from that linked-to comment): "I hate to get embroiled in this derailment, but as a former Orthodox Jew who studied such things, it's absolutely unequivocal that Maimonides, at least in interpreting the letter of law with regard to murder, puts gentiles in a different category than Jews."

Of course it's not JUST Maimonides and/or Jews/Judaism; most scholars of particular religions rate their co-religionists higher than "heathens." That's "Us v. Them", what The Sneetches was all about.

And Krrrlson, I'm very sorry, but even your witsome argumentation can't convert me into a Nazi. Give it up.
posted by davy at 8:00 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


davy, I'm not a Hebrew scholar, I only heard of Shahak this afternoon. Forgive me for being critical of the fact that the only references to this translation and interpretation are coming from Brian B. and David Duke. Surely someone else has translated and written about this guy's teachings. All I'm looking for is a little corroboration.

The fact that Shahak's collaborator stated flat out that hate groups have taken his work completely out of context only gives me more pause to be critical of Brian B.'s assertion. Part of me thinks that this passage in wikipedia is speaking directly to David Duke's comments on Shahak's work that I posted above:

"In the introduction to the 2002 edition of the book Norton Mezvinsky, Shahak's co-author on Jewish Fundamentalism in Israel, writes that antisemites and antisemitic groups "utilize unduly Shahak's criticisms in trying to justify their hatred of Jews. They have continued to do this either by citing and/or using out-of-context some of Shahak's points.""

Since Brian B. and David Duke's arguments align so closely I have concluded there isn't much to them. Sure I've made a lot of assumptions in coming to this conclusion, but I don't think it is out of the realm of possibilities.
posted by crashlanding at 8:02 PM on May 13, 2007


whoa this thread - it's nuts. i don't even know what you people are fighting about anymore.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 8:03 PM on May 13, 2007


If you can't deal with the skeletons in your beliefs in a constructive way,

Skeletons in your beliefs? Now that doesn't make sense; talk about guilt by association. It's been made abundantly clear that none of the Jewish people around here consider Maimonides to be part of their belief system.

To continue with the spanish inquisition theme - just because that happened, should modern Christians consider it "a skeleton in their beliefs"? Not at all; rather it should be considered an abomination that reflects a perversion of their beliefs, a long, long time in the past.
posted by Jimbob at 8:03 PM on May 13, 2007


talk about guilt by association. It's been made abundantly clear that none of the Jewish people around here consider Maimonides to be part of their belief system.

You mean they are defending him out of a sense of racialism? How does that make it any saner?
posted by Brian B. at 8:10 PM on May 13, 2007


What about, oh, quoting Maimondides in Hebrew?

As motty said in the other thread, Maimondides never said it was "okay" to kill gentiles, as Brian B. was implying, it was still a sin, still against the ten commandments.
posted by crashlanding at 8:11 PM on May 13, 2007


maybe i'm ignorant and these are well-known names in every scholarly jewish household ... i'm gentile, what would i know?

Errr, Maimonides is a pretty big deal. His rulings are, for the most part, the basis for contemporary Orthodox Halacha, and his works are studied by every yeshiva student. Yes, there were contemporaries of his that dissented regarding his interpretations, but he's pretty much the go-to guy for Jewish law.

If quoting Maimonides gets one banned, then Maimonides is essentially banned.

Too late.
posted by greatgefilte at 8:12 PM on May 13, 2007


Can someone draw up a graph or a chart? I'm trying really hard to follow this flameout but it's not easy.

Maybe the admins can turn the <> tag back on just, for this one thread? I am sure everyone will behave and use it constructively.
posted by mds35 at 8:14 PM on May 13, 2007


brian b, are you going to answer my question on why you are reading such obscure material on that geocities site?

Errr, Maimonides is a pretty big deal.

yes, i know ... quite an influence on christian thought, actually ... what about the others cited on that page?
posted by pyramid termite at 8:15 PM on May 13, 2007


Hey, the preview misled me. I was referring to the img tag.
posted by mds35 at 8:15 PM on May 13, 2007


Don't look at me, I only do syntax trees.
posted by greatgefilte at 8:15 PM on May 13, 2007


I think it's more of a salivateout, forehead-wise....
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 8:15 PM on May 13, 2007


Sorry, should have said Shahak above rather than Maimonides.
posted by Jimbob at 8:16 PM on May 13, 2007


Me, I'm more into Ibn Khaldun, but mostly because I'm a prologue kinda guy.
posted by mds35 at 8:17 PM on May 13, 2007


Q: Why did the bigot cross the road?
posted by mds35 at 8:18 PM on May 13, 2007


Jimbob, my last comment (except where noted) was to you. And hey, you said "It's been made abundantly clear that none of the Jewish people around here consider Maimonides to be part of their belief system." Are you talking about THIS Maimonides, the one of whom Wikipedia says "his works and his views are considered a cornerstone of Orthodox Jewish thought and study"? Could it be that that's because there are few Orthodox Jews participating in this thread? Of course Wikipedia could be wrong. And/or maybe "the Jews around here" aren't "real" Jews, whatever that means? (The last link points to the Wikipedia article on "Who Is A Jew?")

Sigh, greatgefilte, I type VERY s-l-o-w-l-y. But when did the essential nonuniqueiness of what I had to say stop me?
posted by davy at 8:19 PM on May 13, 2007


And Jimbob, if you don't know the difference between Maimonides and Shabak you should go sit with (R10t)Krrrlson who can't tell me from another guy named David.
posted by davy at 8:21 PM on May 13, 2007


The exact origin of the word is unknown, but may have come from the German bei and gott, or the English by God. William Camden wrote that the Normans were first called bigots, when their Duke Rollo, who receiving Gisla, daughter of King Charles, in marriage, and with her the investiture of the dukedom, refused to kiss the king's foot in token of subjection, unless the king would hold it out for that purpose. And being urged to it by those present, Rollo answered hastily, "No by God", whereupon the King turning about, called him bigot; which name passed from him to his people [1]. This is likely fictional, however, as Gisla is unknown in Frankish sources. It is true that the French used the term bigot as an abuse for the Normans.[2].
The 12th century Anglo-Norman author Wace claimed that bigot was an insult that the French used against the Normans, but it is unclear whether it entered the English language via this route.[3]
According to Egon Friedell, "bigot" is of the same root as "visigoth". In Vulgar Latin the initial v transformed into b (phenomenon today encountered in Iberian languages, such as Spanish language and Portuguese language; visi had truncated into bi in Vulgar Latin (phenomenon common in French and Portuguese). Certainly the Visigoths did behave in a manner which might have given birth to the expression; after they established a highly tolerant citizenship open to any religion, either Arian, Catholic, Jew or pagan, they converted from Arianism to Catholicism and adopted harsh restrictions against all others religions, even their own Arianism. This conversion to Catholicism was the occasion for Wisigothic rulers to become real "Spanish" as their roman compatriots, but they went into a serial of measures against pagans, pricilianists, heretics and Jews. The Spanish word bigote means moustache, probably because Visigoths had moustaches. Since both Normans and Goths were Germanic peoples, the Franks as a Romance nation might well have referred the Normans as "Visigoths" with the expression bigot. This claim is also supported by the fact that the word bigoth for Visigoths appear in Medieval Latin language.
posted by mds35 at 8:22 PM on May 13, 2007


brian b, are you going to answer my question on why you are reading such obscure material on that geocities site?

Because it came up number one on my search for "Pyramid termite begs me for everything after losing."
posted by Brian B. at 8:26 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B doesn't even know that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a classic antisemitic text, yet he thinks he can quote and accurately represent Maimonides.
posted by Falconetti at 8:26 PM on May 13, 2007 [6 favorites]


Q: Why did the bigot cross the road?

"After passing over heaps of dead or dying men, the first place he came to was a neighboring village, in the Abarian territories, which had been burned to the ground by the Bulgarians, agreeably to the laws of war. Here lay a number of old men covered with wounds, who beheld their wives dying with their throats cut, and hugging their children to their breasts, all stained with blood. There several young virgins, whose bodies had been ripped open, after they had satisfied the natural necessities of the Bulgarian heroes, breathed their last; while others, half-burned in the flames, begged to be dispatched out of the world. The ground about them was covered with the brains, arms, and legs of dead men.

Candide made all the haste he could to another village, which belonged to the Bulgarians, and there he found the heroic Abares had enacted the same tragedy."
posted by Firas at 8:29 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


O. Thx.
posted by mds35 at 8:30 PM on May 13, 2007


"Brian B doesn't even know that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a classic antisemitic text, yet he thinks he can quote and accurately represent Maimonides."

So? We should tar and feather everybody (or even only every Mefite) who is not yet an acknowledged expert on whatever he's talking about? There'd be nobody here but us chickens and languagehat.
posted by davy at 8:30 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


Brian B doesn't even know that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a classic antisemitic text, yet he thinks he can quote and accurately represent Maimonides.

Implying a relationship between the two?
posted by Brian B. at 8:32 PM on May 13, 2007


Because it came up number one on my search for "Pyramid termite begs me for everything after losing."

I am fully reclined in my deckchair....
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 8:32 PM on May 13, 2007


waiting...

uninformed prick - empath, equalpants
clueless dick - Omnie Wise
raging asshole - Astro Zombie
kind of a creepy douchetruck - psmith
little fuckweasel/ fuckstick - yhbc
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
-pyramid termite
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 8:34 PM on May 13, 2007


Come on get happy!
posted by mds35 at 8:36 PM on May 13, 2007


But motty, I said nothing about your murdered relatives nor did I murder them. Or are we playing "Duelling Holocausts" now? Or maybe we should both refrain from practicing racism, eh?
posted by davy at 8:39 PM on May 13, 2007


brian b, are you going to answer my question on why you are reading such obscure material on that geocities site?

Because it came up number one on my search for "Pyramid termite begs me for everything after losing."
posted by Brian B. at 11:26 PM on May 13 [+]
[!]


Brian B doesn't even know that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a classic antisemitic text, yet he thinks he can quote and accurately represent Maimonides.

Implying a relationship between the two?
posted by Brian B. at 11:32 PM on May 13 [+]
[!]


I'm pleased that this thread has taken a turn toward absurdist comedy! Awesome. More please.
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:40 PM on May 13, 2007


banhammer.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:42 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Because it came up number one on my search for "Pyramid termite begs me for everything after losing."

guess who comes up number one on my search for "puke-drooling moron with a brain like swiss cheese who can't answer a simple question?"
posted by pyramid termite at 8:44 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


The real issue here is not what Maimonides, Shahak, Duke, or even Captain Kangaroo said or did not say. This issue is that Brian B. made a comment that was considered derailing, inflammatory and offensive by some members. motty, I understand your feelings on this, but I think you might have been better served by flagging the comment and emailing the admins with a little heads-up about the offensive nature of the site/material Brian B. linked to. It did not look like anyone else had taken his bait, and perhaps the comment could have been deleted without anyone noticing.

Jessamyn et al: far be it from me to tell you how to do your jobs here, but since you asked, it seems to me that Brian B. does not understand what MetaFilter is for, and based on this and his previous actions, perhaps a timeout along with a warning about the powers of the banhammer is in order.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:44 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Brian B doesn't even know that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a classic antisemitic text, yet he thinks he can quote and accurately represent Maimonides.

Implying a relationship between the two?


That's antisemitic right there. Gee, if there wasn't a Maimonides writing this bad stuff, good people wouldn't have to write a fake Protocols of the Elders of Zion in order to get people to properly hate jews.

I prefer to be in a moderated community without that crap, thank you.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:45 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


[NOT MR. GREENJEANSIST]
posted by Rock Steady at 8:45 PM on May 13, 2007


"Taken a turn"?!?
posted by coriolisdave at 8:46 PM on May 13, 2007


Rock Steady, that is absurd. This amazingly stupid thread needs to continue.
posted by psmith at 8:46 PM on May 13, 2007


To hell with polishing!
posted by mds35 at 8:50 PM on May 13, 2007


It did not look like anyone else had taken his bait, and perhaps the comment could have been deleted without anyone noticing

Brian posted the link to Shahak after motty asked:

"just precisely wtf does Maimonides have to do with this thread?"

I see nothing banworthy in Brian's attempt to point out the parallels between Scientology's "fair game" outlook and controversial 800 year old talmudic teachings (that apparently happen to be held dear by Orthodox Jews today).

The people banging the pots and pans about the site the Shahak essay is hosted on are engaging in fallacious argumentation and IMO character assassasination.

Bringing up Maimonides teachings, while contentious, was not derailing, in a discussion about religion/scientology.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 8:51 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


The real issue here is not what Maimonides, Shahak, Duke, or even Captain Kangaroo said or did not say.

"who's there?"
"gonnaray"
"gonnaray who?"
"gonnarayn tons of ping pong balls on your head"
posted by pyramid termite at 8:51 PM on May 13, 2007


psmith - It is kind of fun, isn't it?
posted by Rock Steady at 8:52 PM on May 13, 2007


coriolisdave: touche, but those were the first two comments that literally made me laugh.
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:52 PM on May 13, 2007


puke-drooling moron with a brain like swiss cheese who can't answer a simple question?

oh.

really?

I had you down for:

tossmonkey - pyramid termite
shaftmeister - pyramid termite
dickwad - pyramid termite
shitbag - pyramid termite
titting buckwhistle - pyramid termite
bag of felching pencils - pyramid termite
mongy biscuit - pyramid termite
mingeing hairmonster - pyramid termite
git - pyramid termite
fuckhead - pyramid termite
arsehead - pyramid termite
tithead - pyramid termite
crap doodler - pyramid termite
pisswanker - pyramid termite
Joss Ackland's spunky backpack - pyramid termite
twat - pyramid termite
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 8:54 PM on May 13, 2007 [4 favorites]


Heywood, the reasonable response would be "Ok, guys, sorry that I inadvertently linked to a hate site. I'm not in favor of any of that stuff, I just wanted to discuss the parallels between Scientology's anti-other outlook and the anti-other outlooks held by other religious groups. Maimonides was an easy example. Does anyone know if I'm wrong in thinking that Maimonides really held this anti-other view?"

Not "neener neener I can link to whatever site I want, poopypants".
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:55 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


Heywood - Come on. He was hoping for exactly something like this to happen by posting that. If you want to bring inflammatory topics into an existing discussion, it needs to be done carefully and cautiously, not by linking (with almost no explanation) to the type of material he linked to.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:56 PM on May 13, 2007


+1 for titting buckwhistle.
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:56 PM on May 13, 2007


ban 'em
posted by puke & cry at 8:57 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


So, this has been more fun than a topless rodeo, folks, really...
posted by jonmc at 8:58 PM on May 13, 2007


hmmm ... let me guess ... you're saving "hamster packing roundheeled jezebel" for your own contribution?
posted by pyramid termite at 8:58 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


vakakta
posted by ninjew at 8:58 PM on May 13, 2007


point of order ... who gets to call him nipplechips?
posted by pyramid termite at 9:00 PM on May 13, 2007


pt - I know there's more where that came from: let it on out!
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 9:01 PM on May 13, 2007


nipplechips!
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 9:01 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


to the type of material

He linked to the Shahak essay. Reviewing his wikipedia page, I seee Shahak has received bona fides from Gore Vidal, Edward Said, and Cockburn, Hitchens.

What is the issue here. The Shahak essay itself, or the site that the link was hosted on?
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:01 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Not "neener neener I can link to whatever site I want, poopypants".

You forgot "It's not a hate site." That's my favorite part.
posted by mediareport at 9:02 PM on May 13, 2007


vakakta

Uh oh! Ninjew said the secret word that turns us Jews into raging supermen that must hunt down and tear to shreds the enemy of the Jews that the word was invoked against. Oh no, my muscles are tripling, no quintupling in size as we speak and soon I will fly off to the location of the enemy so that I may dig his pancreast out through his eyeballs with my teeth.

Oh wait... false alarm... it was just a bit of indigestion... I'm not even Jewish, come to think of it, but an atheistic Icelander who ate too much delicious cupcake at brunch. I don't know what I was thinking.
posted by Kattullus at 9:06 PM on May 13, 2007


crashlanding makes the point about the Shahak essay very well. Regardless of how many bona fides Shahak may have, it is a sensitive topic that he insists on being about as delicate as a sledgehammer with.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:06 PM on May 13, 2007


ban.
posted by pinky at 9:08 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B: Implying a relationship between [The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and Maimonides]?

There's an awful lot of anti-semitic propaganda and conspiracy theories circulating on the Internet. Since medieval times, Jews have often been a convenient scapegoat, both because of religious differences and simply because they're a small, vulnerable, and highly visible minority. In the aftermath of World War II and the Holocaust, mainstream public opinion has been much more sympathetic towards the Jews, but there's still quite a lot of anti-semitism out there.

Given this, when you look at material like "Alabaster's Archive," it's important to have enough background information to be able to tell the difference between honest criticism and propaganda. It appears that you don't.

I'm not saying this as a personal attack, just to point out that you probably need to learn some more. This website is devoted solely to countering lies circulating on the Internet about the Talmud, for example. The Nizkor Project is dedicated to countering Holocaust denial.

Porn industry gossip columnist Luke Ford (*) on Israel Shahak:
An extension of this myth, which Shahak embraces, is that Shabbat may only be violated to save a Jewish life. Again, this is a perversion of true Jewish law. Shahak's story about the orthodox Jew who left a non-Jew to die on Shabbat rather than call an ambulance -- in line with the Chief Rabbinate's ruling -- is problematic for two reasons.

1. The chief rabbinate of Israel has ruled very explicitly that Shabbat must be violated for the purpose of saving any human life, be it Jewish or not. They phrased this ruling very carefully, because there is a belief among the more ignorant in the orthodox community that this is not the case.

2. The Summer 1966 edition of the magazine Tradition recounts an interview with Mr. Shahak who, when asked to identify the mysterious orthodox Jew who would have let that man die, acknowledges that the Jew of whom he spoke did not exist.

I've located the article in Tradition. Volume 8, Number 2, pp. 58-65. Shahak's admission that he lied about the Jew who would not save the Gentile is documented therein, as is his lie concerning the Chief Rabbinate's ruling. (pg. 59) Additionally, the responsum on saving lives on Shabbat is summarized with appropriate quotations and citations of Torah, Talmud and various post-Talmudic authorities.
(*) Luke Ford's own story is probably colorful enough for an FPP.
posted by russilwvong at 9:15 PM on May 13, 2007 [10 favorites]


Unsolicited advice for Brian B.: simply state that you did not know much about the politics or other controversial positions of the group running the site that hosted the document you linked to, and that it was really not your intention to upset all these people like this. There's no disgrace in that admission, and (as I've been pointing out) it has nothing to do with the rightness or wrongness of what you were saying -- nor does it say anything about whether or not you should have said anything about it.

That's what they keep saying you did wrong, and it's hard even for me to say that linking to a neo-nazi site was a good idea, purely on the tactical grounds of "They'll be out to tar and feather you as a Nazi if you do that." If you want to, find the same or very similar information on another site. (My favorite search engine is Dogpile.) That is, give them what they say they want: admit that maybe in retrospect linking to where you linked to wasn't such a great idea. Call their bluff: make them admit they want you banned for the content of the ideas in your comments, i.e. for crimethink, and watch them squirm around engaging in doublethink to supplement their obvious doubletalk.

For more info on the Protocols, in case anybody needs to know more of what they're talking about, see Wikipedia. (I don't see how anybody can call Wikipedia a "hate site.") Notice also the "Further reading" part of that article and the "External links" toward the bottom.

As for "banniation" proposal, I of course vote NO.
posted by davy at 9:15 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Rock Steady: are you referring to:

"David Duke has also praised his work so that's a black mark right there"

? That's fallacious reasoning on display.

it's a sensitive topic

Obviously.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:15 PM on May 13, 2007


Heywood Mogroot: I see nothing banworthy in Brian's attempt to point out the parallels between Scientology's "fair game" outlook and controversial 800 year old talmudic teachings (that apparently happen to be held dear by Orthodox Jews today).

The supposed parallel is false. There's propaganda which makes this claim, but it's false.
posted by russilwvong at 9:18 PM on May 13, 2007


I wasn't going to drink tonight, but this thread deserves a glass of merlot. And my continued undivided attention.

And, just so we're all clear, I own the rights to "vapid anal scab." Should said insult come into play, the user owes me five cents.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 9:19 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Actually TGPM, I suspect this is now over - I think Brian's off for a well-deserved shit.

(I vote for a NO on banniation (sic) too.)
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 9:20 PM on May 13, 2007


More Wikipedia links (they're good starts): the Talmud and (Orthodox) Jewish religious law.
posted by davy at 9:21 PM on May 13, 2007


"Jews have often been a convenient scapegoat, both because of religious differences and simply because they're a small, vulnerable, and highly visible minority."

Also, because they control the world's money supply and have huge, hooked noses. And horns. German ones have stripes.
posted by klangklangston at 9:22 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


davy: As for "banniation" proposal, I of course vote NO.

I suppose. I'm not sure MetaFilter is the right place to have long arguments debunking anti-semitic propaganda, even if it's being passed on by someone who doesn't realize that it's propaganda. I think it'd be fair for the admins to say, "This isn't what MetaFilter is for." Not necessarily a ban, but "don't drag anti-Jewish propaganda into unrelated threads." (Just as dragging criticism of Israel into any and all Jewish-related threads is regarded as bad behavior.)
posted by russilwvong at 9:22 PM on May 13, 2007


Heywood - The first sentence of my first post in this thread mentioned that what Maimonides, Shahak, Duke, etc. said or did not say is not important to the discussion of Brian B.'s participation on MetaFilter.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:23 PM on May 13, 2007


The supposed parallel is false

This was disputed later in the thread.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:23 PM on May 13, 2007


i feel like i should point out that I called him an uninformed prick in the OTHER call out thread, you know, the one where he told me to stop salivating on my forehead.

I don't actually think he's a prick now. I now think he's uninformed and probably mentally ill.
posted by empath at 9:25 PM on May 13, 2007


Rock Steady, you then wrote:

"This issue is that Brian B. made a comment that was considered derailing, inflammatory and offensive by some members"

That it was considered these things by some members is rather immaterial. If discussions have to respect the sensitivities of everyone we will be left with fpps about the weather, if that.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:26 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Call their bluff: make them admit they want you banned for the content of the ideas in your comments, i.e. for crimethink

Er, just to be clear, not all of us who think Brian B's behaved like an idiot here are calling for banning him.
posted by mediareport at 9:28 PM on May 13, 2007


I'm not saying that we can't have offensive comments here. I'm saying that bringing derailing, inflammatory, and offensive material into unrelated threads with an almost complete absence of tact is not welcomed by MANY, and is not what MetaFilter is for.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:30 PM on May 13, 2007


That it was considered these things by some members is rather immaterial.

"Offensive content" is one of the listed reasons for flagging a comment.
posted by amro at 9:31 PM on May 13, 2007


Boy. This thread has been a whole bucketful of suck. 266 comments, and I still have no idea if Maimonides actually said what he has been quoted as saying.
posted by Bugbread at 9:32 PM on May 13, 2007


Heywood Mogroot, I'm calling bullshit on you right now.

I seee Shahak has received bona fides from Gore Vidal, Edward Said, and Cockburn, Hitchens.

So you're allowed to use the reputations of these men in support of Shahak but I can't use Duke's?

What about the portion of my comment where I mentioned that hate groups have taken Shahak's work out of context? Could it be possible that Brian B.'s position is one of those out of context conclusions? From what I've seen the only comment that mirrors Brian B.'s assertion has come out of David Duke's mouth. If you can show me where Vidal, Said, Cockburn, Hitchens or anyone else who isn't batshitinsane agrees with Duke/Brian B. I'd be very interested.
posted by crashlanding at 9:33 PM on May 13, 2007


I think the Discordians are winning this one.
posted by breezeway at 9:33 PM on May 13, 2007


Actually TGBM, I suspect this is now over

Yeah, almost, it seems. Man, I always miss the clever name-calling bits. Well, having read through this whole mess, I, too, can't see any reason for someone to be banned. It seems Brian B. made a poor choice of website to reference in making a point, the heavens were rent asunder, and a maelstrom of vast proportions descended. The last of the winds are now dying down, as silent onlookers begin to sift through the rubble, scavenging for clues as to the causes of this catastrophe.

Well, at least I've got a glass of wine, now.
Let the banhammer rest in its administrative holster.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 9:34 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B doesn't even know that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a classic antisemitic text, yet he thinks he can quote and accurately represent Maimonides.

That gets to the heart of it. Notice, also, that he has never bothered to cite a source for his quote other than the hate-site he has linked to. I, for one, would like to see that Maimonides quote cited specifically, in context, in its text in a respectable archive.

What Brian B. doesn't want to admit is that he's been flirting with antisemitism via either things he's been reading or someone who's been talking to him. He may not have been aware of this before these threads. But he's cherrypicking quotes from sources he clearly knows nothing about; the cherrypicking is suspiciously the cherrypicking that antisemites use in their literature, and when he cites his quotes, he links to an antisemite web site. That doesn't demonstrate that he himself is antisemitic, but it's extremely suggestive that what little he knows on this subject is from antisemitic sources.

By the way, however, as others have said, it is wrong to deny Maimonides's importance in the Jewish tradition or even in the western tradition. We read Maimonides at St. John's College, for example. Yes, this quote (if it's authentic) is taken out of historical context and, in context, is utterly similar to things said by other important religious figures of all faiths. It doesn't "prove" anything—but it is suspiciously similar to antisemitic blood libel, especially when it's promulgated in such willful ignorance and in denial of how unexceptional it is in context.

All that said, I'm certainly not advocating that Brian B. be banned because I don't think what he's said, and what this suggests about him, is sufficient to identify him as someone who is enough of a hardcore-enough antisemite. I would say the same about other kinds of bigotry—being merely wrong on MeFi isn't enough, being mildly bigoted isn't enough. There shouldn't be a particular kind of bigotry such that merely a suspicion of it is cause for banning.

However, I would like to say that Judaism is a religion and not a ‘race’ within any reasonable meaning of the term (and therefore ‘racist’ is the wrong word).

Well, there aren't any reasonable meanings of the term “race” that aren't equivalent to “ethnicity”. And while Judaism is clearly a religion, being a Jew can be an ethnicity. Since none of these terms have a rigorous meaning (or, in the case of the religious terms, a rigorous meaning we can all agree upon), it's best to allow people to use these terms as they apply them to themselves as they wish. Secular Jews have very good reasons to think of being Jewish as being of a particular “race”. Similarly, other Jews have very good reasons to focus exclusively on Judaism (for example, converts).
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:35 PM on May 13, 2007 [10 favorites]


Heywood Mogroot: This was disputed later in the thread.

greatgefilte posted a followup comment noting that Maimonides is not saying that murder of non-Jews is permitted. Again: the parallel that Brian B. drew is false.

bugbread: I still have no idea if Maimonides actually said what he has been quoted as saying.

Which quote?
posted by russilwvong at 9:35 PM on May 13, 2007


Rock Steady, you're god damned right and I applaud you.

By the way, did you see how the Sox came back in the bottom of the 9th tonight? Awesome!

If Dizzy were here he would just make a cake or something and this whole dumb thread would go away. Such is the power of Dizzy.
posted by psmith at 9:36 PM on May 13, 2007


I'm not sure your idea is so great russilwvong because it boils down to "Don't piss off 'The Jews.'" Whether because "The Jews" bleed when you criticize them, or are big bad meanies who'll stomp you first chance they get, or because thy really ARE God's Chosen People, or becaus they're simply always right, or because (as the Bell Curve shows) they're just plain SMARTER than everybody else (except possibly Orientals), or for any other reason. It marks "The Jews" (and thereby ALL Jews) off as "not really human like everybody else," which strikes me (in all its permutations) as unduly conducive to antisemitism. One obvious example is that then the neo-nazis can run all over the Web (and off it) claiming "'The Jews' don't allow Free Speech on the Internet!" Do you want to use Metafilter to help the Stormfront recruit?
posted by davy at 9:36 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


psmith -- I watched the whole damn game and shut it off in the 8th.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:38 PM on May 13, 2007


davy: shut the fuck up.
posted by Mid at 9:38 PM on May 13, 2007 [4 favorites]


russil: the nut of the Scientology quote that Brian brought up Maimonides was:

"[non-Scientologists are] not entitled to the moral protections that humans [Scientologists] get"

I see the parallels here. Talmudic law was largely BS, which is why I react strongly when Christianists here make demonstrations about how important it is/was for our national moral fabric.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:41 PM on May 13, 2007


greatgefilte posted a followup comment noting that Maimonides is not saying that murder of non-Jews is permitted. Again: the parallel that Brian B. drew is false.

Though to be fair, Maimonides did say that murder of a gentile is not punishable by death at the hands of the court, unlike the murder of a Jew. And, the quote about a non-Jewish woman who sleeps with a Jewish man being given the death penalty is accurate, though I'm not sure where he got that from...
posted by greatgefilte at 9:41 PM on May 13, 2007


I see the (purported) parallels too. I would be hesitant to post a comment about them to a community website, for fear that they would be misconstrued or considered offensive. Brian B. was not hesitant, because he MEANT to be offensive.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:45 PM on May 13, 2007


So you're allowed to use the reputations of these men in support of Shahak but I can't use Duke's?

That David Duke likes to eg. The Bell Curve or what have you does not make it prima facie wrong. The Bell Curve stands or falls on its own merits.

This is Logic 10A.

People I respect spoke well of Shahak upon his passing. These are his bona fides that allow me to not suspect Shahak of being a bad apple.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:45 PM on May 13, 2007


Rock Steady, it was a depressing game almost all the way through. But it was a great 9th inning.

(i know many of you don't care. suck it.)
posted by psmith at 9:46 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Oh, this is pure gold. Pure MeFi gold, which is kind of like fool's gold, but with a heart of lead.
posted by dg at 9:46 PM on May 13, 2007


greatgefilte, I'm glad you're around in this thread. I wish Brian B. could just end this by citing where he read this and not have it trace back to a hate site.

I appreciate the fact that you can corroborate his statements from your own studies. I just wanted to know if there was any basis to what he was saying or if it was just out of context, antisemitic BS.

On preview, I'm not saying that there was anything wrong with Shahak, Heywood...just that it seems like people have taken his work out of context in the past and used it for their own agendas. My comment about Duke was meant to be about Brian B.'s use of Shahak's work itself. I'm not condemning the man, just questioning whether Duke/Brian B.'s conclusions are what Shahak intended.
posted by crashlanding at 9:49 PM on May 13, 2007


Ok, here's my attempt at a recap :

1) Brian B. makes a stupid, offhand comment.

and I quote...
...one of the tenets of Scientology that's revealed late in the process is that non-Scientologists are not human, and not entitled to the moral protections that humans get. It is perfectly ok to lie to, cheat, steal from, or even kill a non-Scientologist.

I had no idea that Hubbard was familiar with Maimonides.
Here, Brian B. clearly draws a parallel between an alleged tenet of Scientology and the teachings of Maimonides.

There may be some sort of similarity between Scientologists and Maimonides, in that both felt that people who weren't in their "group" were somehow a different class of people. However, it is clear that Maimonides did not think it was "perfectly okay" to kill non-Jews. Thus, the correlation between the two is not direct, nor is it complete.

Had Brian B. said something to the effect of, "there is an indirect, incomplete similarity between Maimonides and the Scientologists" I doubt that his comment would have generated so much controversy. However, he did not put any sort of disclaimer on his comment. He posted a one-line snark indicating a very direct sort of correlation between this alleged tenet of Scientology and the teachings of Maimonides.

I'm sorry, Brian. You were wrong.

2) People called Brian B. on his rather ignorant statement.

3) Brian B. responds, and links to a very good example of a very despicable sort of website.

Once again, Brian, I'm sorry, but you were wrong to do this.

4) The standard sort of argument ensues.

Wherein Brian B continues to try and defend his viewpoint against all comers.

I don't think that Brian B. is an anti-semite. I think he made an ignorant statement, and has succumbed to what I refer to as The Metafilter Effect. This is the classic situation where someone assiduously defends a given viewpoint, not because they strongly believe in it, but because of pride and momentum.

In other words, Brian, you have already lost the game. The best thing to do now is to simply apologize and get on with your life.
posted by Afroblanco at 9:49 PM on May 13, 2007 [6 favorites]


Brian B. was not hesitant, because he MEANT to be offensive.

I agree that dredging up historical parallels (apparent Talmudic totalitarianistic BS) to the current practices of the cult in question is contentious.

How that is offensive depends on one's defensiveness, I suppose.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:49 PM on May 13, 2007


It marks "The Jews" (and thereby ALL Jews) off as "not really human like everybody else," which strikes me (in all its permutations) as unduly conducive to antisemitism.

I presume you're equally welcoming of anti-Muslim, anti-gay, anti-atheist, and anti-abortion propaganda, yes?

One obvious example is that then the neo-nazis can run all over the Web (and off it) claiming "'The Jews' don't allow Free Speech on the Internet!"

Ah, I see now. The reason *you* are doing it is to the neo-nazis won't! You're a hero!
posted by Krrrlson at 9:51 PM on May 13, 2007


Etheral Bligh said: "I, for one, would like to see that Maimonides quote cited specifically, in context, in its text in a respectable archive." Or do you read Hebrew? Of course I'm not a Maimonides scholar (either), but I can point to a Wikipedia article on him (and repost also one on his work), and again draw attention to the "References," "See also" and "External links" part of those articles. (Many Wikipedia articles have those, and often what they point to is better than the article; that's why I say 'It's a start.') There must be dozens of other 'non-Maimonides scholars' around here; so far, EB, you're only the second who's not.
posted by davy at 9:51 PM on May 13, 2007


Oh, this is pure gold. Pure MeFi gold, which is kind of like fool's gold, but with a heart of lead.

A heart made of lead, a liver made of dog turds, a brain made of cut-rate concrete, and a soul composed of I AM SHOUTING AT YOU.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:52 PM on May 13, 2007 [4 favorites]


What Brian B. doesn't want to admit is that he's been flirting with antisemitism via either things he's been reading or someone who's been talking to him. He may not have been aware of this before these threads. But he's cherrypicking quotes from sources he clearly knows nothing about; the cherrypicking is suspiciously the cherrypicking that antisemites use in their literature, and when he cites his quotes, he links to an antisemite web site. That doesn't demonstrate that he himself is antisemitic, but it's extremely suggestive that what little he knows on this subject is from antisemitic sources.

This is all pretty stupid reasoning. It was written by a Jew, quoting a source in Maimonides. I don't care who else quotes if it is a fact. I've forgotten more Maimonides than most people have ever read. It wasn't taught to me in the context of antisemitism as many had hoped.
posted by Brian B. at 9:52 PM on May 13, 2007


Afroblanco:

I consider the nut:

"not entitled to the moral protections that humans get"

to be highly parallel, between the talmudic lawgiving of this Maimonides guy and Hubbert.

So I don't consider it "ignorant" at all. Contentious. yes.

links to a very good example of a very despicable sort of website

He did no such thing. He linked to an Shahak essay hosted on that website. Like Davy suggests above, he could/should have apologized for the gaffe though.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:52 PM on May 13, 2007


This fucking thing again?

Taking three sentences out of the Mishne Torah and asking Jews to defend them, as though they have some obligation to do so is one of my all time favorite exercises.

There are tens of thousands of pages of Jewish law and there's a lot of fascinating and beautiful as well as anachronistic, cruel and mean stuff. You read three lines of a massive text which is essentially a restatement of the entirety of Jewish law, tell me it's what the Rambam thought, what I believe in, and tell me I belong to a hateful sect. Fuck that thing. You keep it in your dirty little hand.
posted by kosem at 9:53 PM on May 13, 2007 [16 favorites]


In other words, Brian, you have already lost the game. The best thing to do now is to simply apologize and get on with your life.

Afro, I've never seen a bigger crowd of paranoid chickenshits in one place. You must be joking.
posted by Brian B. at 9:54 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


asking Jews to defend them

there's no need to defend them, unless you hold these unequal laws as current today.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:56 PM on May 13, 2007


Kattullus writes "I have a very close friend who once was on the brink of being a holocaust denier....The point of my story is that if anti-semitic propaganda is left unchallenged, good people can end up having anti-semitic views, not out of evilness, but because of ignorance. That's why this thread is important."

Ok, so Matt (and by extension any other site owner) ought to delete anti-semitic comments, because your friend is gullible?

Oh, wait, that's not what you said. You said "if anti-semitic propaganda is left unchallenged". So, did you challenge this is the Blue?

I figure you had several options: you could have counter-commented that Maimonides didn't say what Brian B. alleged. You could have allowed that Maimonides said it, but it was misinterpreted. You could have allowed that Brian B.'s quote of Maimonides was correct, but given evidence or opinion that most Jews don't credit Maimonides's opinion.

But it's up to you, to us, who disagree to refute. Not to demand that the comment be thrown done the memory hole.


My take on the this whole controversy: when I initially saw Brian B.'s comment, I was inclined to upbraid him in the thread for throwing in a gratuitous anti-Semitic comment. Then I thought, "hmm, I'm no Maimonides scholar, but I seem to recall Maimonides did write some uncomfortable commentary".

What sites Brian B. linked to don't really matter. (Anyone looking for hate sites will be able to find them with or without a link from here.) What matters is either that Brian B.'s comment was true or or not. If it was, it needs to be dealt with (e.g., "Some respected Jewish commentators on the Torah said things that we as 21st century multi-culturalists find morally repugnant") or refuted ("Maimonides didn't actually say that.")

In neither case is the answer to remove the commenter or ban Brian B.


I have a lot of respect for the Jewish tradition, but no respect for anyone who says no one can criticize anything Jewish without being tarred as an anti-Semite. I have a lot of respect for the American tradition, but no respect for "protectors" of America who says that anyone who mentions Jefferson was a slaveholder or reminds us of the Trail of Tears is an "anti-American."

And if there's a link to a true and factual history of the Trail of Tears on an anti-American Red Chinese or Hezbollah hate site, that doesn't make that history any less true. Nor does it make America any better to insist that any such link be removed and the linker banned.

It may make America better to discuss that, site, to point out that a true history of the Trail of Tears on a Hezbollah hate site doesn't make everything on that hate site true. So do that.

But when your reaction to anything that mentions bad aspects of whatever tradition you love, attacking the messenger just makes you seem to be an uncritical propagandist for whatever tradition you want to present as being without flaw.
posted by orthogonality at 9:57 PM on May 13, 2007 [5 favorites]


I consider the nut:

"not entitled to the moral protections that humans get"

to be highly parallel, between the talmudic lawgiving of this Maimonides guy and Hubbert.


Yes, but what about the rest of the quote? You know, the part about killing people? Brian never says "the part about the moral protections is similar, but not the part about killing people." Once again, had he put some sort of disclaimer on it, his comment would have been far less controversial.

In any case, I still get the sense that The Metafilter Effect is in play.
posted by Afroblanco at 9:58 PM on May 13, 2007


Grrrlson asked me: "I presume you're equally welcoming of anti-Muslim, anti-gay, anti-atheist, and anti-abortion propaganda, yes?"

I myself am an anti-Islamic (to cut to the chase, anti-theist in general, including $cientology), bisexual, atheist and pro-abortion anarchist who stands for Free Speech even when it's at my expense, yes. That is, I even stand for the right of fascist fuckwits like you to twist everything I say, you twit. I'll argue with you, tell you you're full of shit, or ignore every petty littlegirlish "quip" you see fit to pixelize, but I still won't go for banning you, beating you, tarring and feathering you, or shoving you into an oven for doing what comes perfectly naturally to a fascist fuckwit like you.
posted by davy at 9:59 PM on May 13, 2007 [5 favorites]


Oh how i wish for a [++++++++++++++}
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:00 PM on May 13, 2007


A battery?
posted by greatgefilte at 10:01 PM on May 13, 2007


Afro, I've never seen a bigger crowd of paranoid chickenshits in one place. You must be joking.

Brian, dude, if you'd look closely, you'd see that I'm really just trying to give you the benefit of the doubt.

But honestly, if you really are that intent on digging yourself deeper, I'm sure that many here will be more then happy to hand you a shovel.
posted by Afroblanco at 10:01 PM on May 13, 2007


(Were I half as in love with the sound of myself typing "reasonably" I might've said something like what orthogonality said.)
posted by davy at 10:02 PM on May 13, 2007


but not the part about killing people.

people were too busy going into character assassination calling for the banhammer to get to that level of discussion with brian.

Judges putting to death people wrongly qualifies as "killing people" in my book, fwiw.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:02 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


What matters is either that Brian B.'s comment was true or or not.
Because if history teaches us anything, it's that contexts and connections mean nothing, and cherry-picked snippets are sacred truths in isolation, aiding the "intellectual progress" that brave Brian B. is so boldly serving.
Utter nonsense.
posted by Abiezer at 10:05 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Afro, it would be my dying honor. They're just making garbage up now trying to convince themselves.
posted by Brian B. at 10:07 PM on May 13, 2007


greatgefilte: Maimonides did say that murder of a gentile is not punishable by death at the hands of the court, unlike the murder of a Jew.

I know, Heywood already linked to your comment. Brian B appears to be under the misapprehension that according to Maimonides, the murder of non-Jews is permitted.

And, the quote about a non-Jewish woman who sleeps with a Jewish man being given the death penalty is accurate, though I'm not sure where he got that from...

Interesting. Could you point us to the text? (The relevant section of the Guide for the Perplexed appears to be here, but I didn't see this stated.)
posted by russilwvong at 10:08 PM on May 13, 2007


Hitler!
posted by Kwine at 10:08 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


the murder of non-Jews is permitted

murder-by-Judge is still murder, right?
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:09 PM on May 13, 2007


By the way, digging into Brian B.'s profile, he appears to be knowledgeable about early Christian history.
posted by russilwvong at 10:11 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B appears to be under the misapprehension that according to Maimonides, the murder of non-Jews is permitted.

Russil, you might want to quote me. That was motty's line.
posted by Brian B. at 10:13 PM on May 13, 2007


though I'm not sure where he got that from...


Then you didn't click on the link to check.
posted by Brian B. at 10:16 PM on May 13, 2007


Heywood Mogroot: murder-by-Judge is still murder, right?

Saying that "the death penalty applies to non-Jews for these arbitrary crimes" is different from saying that non-Jews are not human, and that it's perfectly okay to kill non-Jews.

Brian B.: "Russil, you might want to quote me."

Sure, here's your comment.
[quoting Malor] ...one of the tenets of Scientology that's revealed late in the process is that non-Scientologists are not human, and not entitled to the moral protections that humans get. It is perfectly ok to lie to, cheat, steal from, or even kill a non-Scientologist.

I had no idea that Hubbard was familiar with Maimonides.
posted by russilwvong at 10:17 PM on May 13, 2007


LobsterMitten writes "Heywood, the reasonable response would be 'Ok, guys, sorry that I inadvertently linked to a hate site. I'm not in favor of any of that stuff, I just wanted to discuss the parallels between Scientology's anti-other outlook and the anti-other outlooks held by other religious groups. Maimonides was an easy example. Does anyone know if I'm wrong in thinking that Maimonides really held this anti-other view?'"

Yeah, that would have been a reasonable response. Agreed.

But since when has there been a standard that people have to justify their comments or proactively explain that a site they link to is not 100% in conformity with their own beliefs? Must we all thoroughly investigate a site's owners' beliefs and relations before linking to source material on that site?

If I link to wikipedia, does that mean that I agree with Jimmy Wales's advocacy of Ayn Rand? Or that I agree with everything the principle author of the wikipedia article believes? If someone links to Maimonides's commentary on X, does it mean he agrees with Maimonides's beliefs about Y? (Hell, it doesn't even mean he agrees with Maimonides view on X!)

A link's a link, it's not an endorsement of everything on the linked site.


Of course, that's for any normal link. But if something's a "hate site" then we're allowed -- nay, required! --to get all up in arms, to prove how pure we are by rejecting any mention of the "hate site".

This is essentially a modern day taboo, an idea that some things are too dangerous to even mention. It's silly an anti-rational superstition, some sort of magical thinking that "hate sites" are such super-powerful contaminants that even linking to one cross-contaminates anyone seeing the link. That the words on the hate site are some sort of wily demon that can "possess" us if we ever release it by mentioning its infernal name.

That's not only ridiculous, it grants the "hate site" for more power than it deserves.

Link to the hate site, and say "this is silly stupid crap"! Don't invest it in such denomic magical potency that we can never ever refer to it for fear of releasing the hordes of hell.
posted by orthogonality at 10:17 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


I've forgotten more Maimonides than most people have ever read.

I don't doubt this because most people have read no Maimonides at all.

So, anyway, maybe my supposition was wrong. The reasoning wasn't “stupid”. In fact, your implicit claim to having read a great deal of Maimonides makes it even more strange that you'd pick as your source an antisemitic website. Someone who doesn't know Maimonides at all might accidentally use an antisemitic site for a source because they just Googled it. Someone with a strong familiarity is less likely to do so. All the classic texts I'm likely to cite I already know where to find them on the Internet. Alternatively, if you actually have little familiarity with Maimonides at all, then why are you aware of that particular quote? I'm an atheist and I've read Maimonides—a little—and that quote is new to me, as far as I know. Finally, you still refuse to cite it from a more respectable source. Why? Especially if you're a Maimonides scholar?

What matters is either that Brian B.'s comment was true or or not. If it was, it needs to be dealt with...

I agree with you in principle, and mostly in practice, but I think this is being a bit naive. There is a larger context here, after all. For example, I have no doubt that I could go to a racist hate-site and find numerous cherrypicked quotes by black activists that say things that supports racist arguments against blacks. It would be especially suspicious if I picked something that validated a racist cliche about blacks. And it would be quite revealing if I linked to the racist hate-site for the quote. Would you argue this is all irrelevant? That the quote itself is the point and should be either refuted or accepted or put into context? Or would people be right to say, ”whether the quote is true or not, you're promulgating a common racist trope and it's revealing that you liked to a racist site to do so”?

At any rate, again, I don't think banning is appropriate. If Brian B. is a budding antisemite, then let him flower and then ban him.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:19 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


russil: from my reading brian's original, above, is not proposing a 1:1 identity between Hubbert's morality and Maimonides, just that there were parallels.

Had we a functioning community here, this could have been teased out in discussion, rather than the 16kt flamefest we got to enjoy here.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:20 PM on May 13, 2007


You can quote 100 vile, nonsensical things from the bible without even breaking a sweat. Why go out of your way to pull out obscure stuff related to the blood-libel from anti-semitic websites, when it's so easy to pull out quotes like "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live"?
posted by empath at 10:21 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian, what's really striking to me is that you know all this stuff about early Christian history, but you don't know about the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Before this thread, I would have assumed that anyone reasonably intelligent and well-read (which you appear to be) would be familiar with the significance of the Protocols.
posted by russilwvong at 10:21 PM on May 13, 2007


In fact, your implicit claim to having read a great deal of Maimonides makes it even more strange that you'd pick as your source an antisemitic website.

No more strange than you imagining that I care what you think is right and wrong in this case.
posted by Brian B. at 10:21 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


I was so close to buying a second joke account called "Maimonides" and posting a parody of Marshall McLuhan's "you don't understand my work at all" speech from Annie Hall. But, this thread has gone on too long so not enough people would have read it to justify the expense.
posted by Falconetti at 10:23 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


Why? Especially if you're a Maimonides scholar?

red herring eb. The site the Shahak essay is hosted on is immaterial, other than as an avoidance response.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:23 PM on May 13, 2007


Before this thread, I would have assumed that anyone reasonably intelligent and well-read (which you appear to be) would be familiar with the significance of the Protocols.

I still don't know what it is. Maybe you could enlighten me. But then we'd have to ban you.
posted by Brian B. at 10:26 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Why go out of your way to pull out obscure stuff related to the blood-libel from anti-semitic websites

Because the historical parallels of differing moralities for in-group/out-group is apropos to discussion of Hubbard's "fair game" outlook.

witches don't make much of an 'out-group', alas, though they of course had their turn under the wheel in American history.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:27 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Well, there aren't any reasonable meanings of the term “race” that aren't equivalent to “ethnicity”

This is not strictly true. Epidemiologists would probably disagree, for one.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:28 PM on May 13, 2007


orthogonality, he opened himself up to the rest of the site's content when he defended it as a "scholarly archive"
posted by crashlanding at 10:28 PM on May 13, 2007


orthogonality, he opened himself up to the rest of the site's content when he defended it as a "scholarly archive"

To a bunch of idiots.
posted by Brian B. at 10:29 PM on May 13, 2007


No more strange than you imagining that I care what you think is right and wrong in this case.

Then why are you participating in this discussion? I haven't called you names. I can't said you should be banned. I haven't even claimed that you're actually an anti-semite, just that you're acting very suspiciously like one.

Look, afroblanca has a really good point. It's entirely possible that you just pulled that Maimonides reference out of some vague recollection to support your anti-theist point, were attacked with accusations that would make most of us very defensive, and are backed into a corner, being more and more hostile, and taking a position you would otherwise never have taken. The answer to this is to leave the thread.

red herring eb. The site the Shahak essay is hosted on is immaterial, other than as an avoidance response.

Well, people are arguing about several different things, here. It's relevant to the argument that Brian B. is acting suspiciously like an antisemite.

But if the argument is about the quote and whether it proves anything at all, I have no idea why anyone would be continuing to argue this. It doesn't prove anything. Which, really, is why people are moving on to the other argument above. And that we all like to argue, of course.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:31 PM on May 13, 2007


This is awesome. A world class antisemitic nutcase flaming out. I've already gone through 2 bags of popcorn.
posted by puke & cry at 10:31 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


And that we all like to argue, of course.
That's a filthy lie!
posted by dg at 10:33 PM on May 13, 2007


This is awesome. A world class antisemitic nutcase flaming out. I've already gone through 2 bags of popcorn.

I called your bluff, and you didn't have it.
posted by Brian B. at 10:35 PM on May 13, 2007


oh lord have mercy - Brian: you're back? What did you do that for? I gave you a really good out - I told everyone you were having a humpty!

Look - it's getting late: you've got to get up and go to school tomorrow. Say goodnight to your imaginary friends in cyberspace and go take your meds.

*changes vote to BURN*
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 10:37 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Look, I am about as strong a free-speech-advocate as you could hope to find, but I do not condone trolling, and I believe the admins of MetaFilter do not either. What Brian B. did in the Scientology thread is an almost textbook example of trolling -- posting simple statements that are benign at a first glance, but contain connotations and allusions that are not intended to stir up discussion, but are designed to offend and to spark anger and dispute among certain people.

I hope the admins will take action against the troll.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:38 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


It's relevant to the argument that Brian B. is acting suspiciously like an antisemite.

This is the paranoia I referred to, in case anyone was keeping score.
posted by Brian B. at 10:39 PM on May 13, 2007


I said Hitler, god damn it. HITLER.

*stamps foot*
posted by Kwine at 10:40 PM on May 13, 2007


Brian B., your incomprehensible non-sequitur responses are really an art form. Kudos.
posted by puke & cry at 10:40 PM on May 13, 2007


The_Partridge_Family - Oh, he's taken a shit.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:43 PM on May 13, 2007


puke and cry, you actually bothered to type that?
posted by Brian B. at 10:45 PM on May 13, 2007


This is not strictly true. Epidemiologists would probably disagree, for one.

And they'd be wrong, if so. The only way that the word “race” is used is to refer to a genetic interrelatedness that is indicated by a few superficial features. This genetic relationship is real only within certain subpopulations and not worldwide. Therefore, whenever someone uses the word “race” in a useful way, they are (possibly unknowingly) misusing the word. Medical professionals in the US can link sickle cell anemia to Blacks and Tay-Sachs to Jews, and use the word “race” while doing so, but that doesn't mean that Sephardic Jews get Tay-Sachs or that Eastern African Blacks get sickle cell anemia. In other words, “race” doesn't actually accurately predict genetic relatedness unless you're just fortunate to have a limited scope which allows it to do so. But since that's what the term means, the result is that race doesn't actually exist. On the other hand, both ethnicities exist and related subpopulations exist. Either term is better used for their respective descriptive purposes.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:46 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


It's like Bevets, but for Jews!
posted by mediareport at 10:48 PM on May 13, 2007 [10 favorites]


Grrrlson... fascist fuckwits like you... you twit... tell you you're full of shit... ignore every petty littlegirlish "quip" you see fit to pixelize... a fascist fuckwit like you.

You're really on a roll today, aren't you. I especially like "Grrrlson" followed by disdain for "littlegirlish quips" in the next sentence.

Tomorrow's lesson: the meaning of the word "fascist" and how Mr. Dictionary can help. Stay tuned.
posted by Krrrlson at 10:51 PM on May 13, 2007


crashlanding writes "orthogonality, he opened himself up to the rest of the site's content when he defended it as a 'scholarly archive'"

I haven't looked at the site, but from what Brian B. quoted, it alleges to be a collection of verbatim texts. Of scholarly articles and books. Now, true, these are texts collected on a hate site, but (putatively) they are nonetheless reproduced unaltered.

And it appears that Shakak was a controversial scholar but not an anti-Semite.

Sure, it would have been better if Brian B. could have found a link to Shakak's scholarship on a site other than bloodlibel.com, but he didn't.

But that doesn't make Shakak's scholarship automatically wrong, any more than linking to a text by, e.g., Galileo on CatholicismSux.com makes Galilieo's scholarship incorect.


Here's what I take away from the discussion:
* Maimonides is a respected theologian, especially respected among (some) Orthodox Jews.
* Maimonides in his commentaries did in fact write that Jews and non_Jews should be afforded different treatment, solely for being Jewish or non-Jewish. (Thanks to greatgefilte for illuminating this.)

* This is in fact, similar to what is alleged to be Elron's teachings about the different treatment of members of his sect and those not of his sect. Which is what Brian B. said.

When Brian B. pointed out a true similarity, he was called an anti-Semite for doing so, and several people advocated he be banned for pointing out an inconvenient truth.

Of course, the fact that Maimonides said something that's morally repugnant and that some Jews (apparently) believe Maimonides's viewpoint, doesn't mean that either those Jews or any other Jews should be treated as less than human, nor does it mean that the beliefs of some Jews justifies hating or harming those Jews or Jews in general.

But the Holocaust (a terrible thing) and a long history of anti-Semitism (a terrible thing) doesn't mean that no Jew should ever be criticized, or that any such criticism is necessarily motivated by anti-Semitic animus.
posted by orthogonality at 10:52 PM on May 13, 2007 [6 favorites]


Brian B: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a pretty standard work of modern antisemitic propaganda. (I'm not being snarky, here, just letting you know, that's all.)
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 10:52 PM on May 13, 2007


Following this thread has given me an excuse to watch the replay of the Red Sox comeback on NESN, so it's got that going for it.

And, technically, I'm advocating that Brian B. get a timeout and a warning for trolling.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:54 PM on May 13, 2007


Heywood Mogroot said: "Judges putting to death people wrongly qualifies as 'killing people' in my book, fwiw."

If Jesus really existed and something resembling the Crucifixion happened to him then I think that's what that was. Whomever was responsible. But then unlike the writer(s) of the Gospel of John, I don't think "The Jews" were to blame for that (not then and certainly not now) simply because I don't think there is any such thing as "The Jews". To relate (and probably mangle) a joke an old (yes Jewish) drinking buddy liked to tell, "You know what they say, 'Two Jews, three opinions'; but I say 'Why only three? Is there a time limit?'" Considering that one of the two or three tiny facts I know about the Talmud is that a a large part of it is a record of disputations between Jewish scholars of Judaism, it seems to me that the very existence of the Talmud shows there's no such thing as any one uniform group called "The Jews", especially since a large section of Judaism says the Talmud is itself iffy.

And on the other grounds for a proposal to "discipline" Brian B., for being a 'troll'", I also vote NO. Hey Rock Steady, if what you want is a site where people say only what you want and only how you want it said, why don't you GYOFB? You and Krrrlson can sit there holding hands and quietly rock, back and forth, back and forth.
posted by davy at 10:58 PM on May 13, 2007


Again I wish I'd said what ortho said the way he said it. Maybe I need to poop, myself.
posted by davy at 11:00 PM on May 13, 2007


I'm down with (that's the second time I've said that today) The_Partridge_Family - teenager alert!

Things like Because it came up number one on my search for "Pyramid termite begs me for everything after losing" or puke and cry, you actually bothered to type that? reminds me of just one thing - YouTube comments.

And we all know who makes those....
posted by forallmankind at 11:01 PM on May 13, 2007


The Life of Brian B. He's not an anti-Semite, he's a very naughty boy.
posted by Abiezer at 11:01 PM on May 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


Hey puke & cry, you're calling Brian B. a "world class antisemitic nutcase flaming out"?!? Boy are YOU easily impressed.
posted by davy at 11:05 PM on May 13, 2007


"davy: shut the fuck up."
posted by Mid at 12:38 AM on May 14 [1 favorite +][!]


MAKE ME.
posted by davy at 11:08 PM on May 13, 2007


But the Holocaust (a terrible thing) and a long history of anti-Semitism (a terrible thing) doesn't mean that no Jew should ever be criticized, or that any such criticism is necessarily motivated by anti-Semitic animus.

Yeah, but that's a strawman. Who here has said that no Jew should be criticized or that any such criticism is necessarily antisemitic?

Secondly, I don't understand how you think that Brian's argument is substantial enough to warrant being taken seriously and on its own. It's such a stupid argument that it's entirely reasonable to wonder why anyone would make it. And when they link to hate-sites for their citations, then it's reasonable to think the answer to this conundrum has been found. I mean, for crying out loud, it's not as if Brian B. is criticizing Israel's policies in Palestine. He quoted an ancient Jewish scholar to support a very blood-libelous assertion in the service of comparing Jews to Scientologists and linked to an antisemitic hate-site to do so.

Maybe motty is oversensitive. You're undersensitive.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:09 PM on May 13, 2007 [3 favorites]


I was about to suggest that if he gets found out, maybe he'll get a spanking - until I realized: I think that's quite probably what he wants!

Hey, props to you Brian - who doesn't like a good spanking from the right lady? (uh, for me that's not my mom though).
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 11:11 PM on May 13, 2007


"CatholicismSux.com"

Aww... Not found.
posted by klangklangston at 11:13 PM on May 13, 2007




Rock Steady writes "Look, I am about as strong a free-speech-advocate as you could hope to find, but I do not condone trolling,... statements that are benign at a first glance, but contain connotations and allusions that are not intended to stir up discussion, but are designed to offend and to spark anger and dispute among certain people."

Huh? Uncontroversial free speech is never threatened with censorship, and any controversial free speech can be seen as trolling -- and it usually meant to be what you define as trolling, at least in the sense of stirring things up. Tom Paine hoped to, and helped to, stir up a revolution when he wrote "Common Sense"; Uncle Tom's Cabin helped to stir up a civil war; the "Letter from Birmingham Jail" hoped and helped to stir up extreme social change.

If you don't support trolling, you don't support anything but uncontroversial free speech, the free speech which is never at risk of censorship and so never required protection.

With all due respect, I'm not sure you're being intellectually honest with yourself. Either you believe in free speech, or you believe decorum is more important. Inevitably, free speech will "offend and to spark anger and dispute among certain people". If you're not willing to allow that, you're not a free speech advocate, much less a "strong" one.

Which is OK. In your value system, free speech is subordinated to maintaining civility and decorum. That's OK. But it's intellectually dishonest to also claim you're a free speech supporter, just because that's some received belief you're "supposed" to value as an American or a liberal or whatever thought-tradition you want to claim.

It's like being some social Anglican, saying, "I'm a good Christian but I don't believe in the resurrection or divinity of Jesus Christ or in God but I think civility and community are served by going to the Cathedral of St. John the Lip Servicer every Sunday and having tea with Vicar after".
posted by orthogonality at 11:14 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


"Maybe motty is oversensitive."

MAYBE?!?
posted by davy at 11:15 PM on May 13, 2007


2nded
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 11:16 PM on May 13, 2007


"If you don't support trolling, you don't support anything but uncontroversial free speech, the free speech which is never at risk of censorship and so never required protection."

Oh my fucking Christ, you just compared trolling a website to Thomas Paine and MLK jr.? You need to back the fuck off the internet before your self-regard renders you unable to grasp any nuance save didacticism.

I mean, can you hear yourself? Or did sanctimony go on sale (so you got extra)?
posted by klangklangston at 11:18 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Hey ortho, next week I get to be Good Cop, okay? Assuming you'll feed me my lines, I mean.
posted by davy at 11:20 PM on May 13, 2007


"Maybe motty is oversensitive."

MAYBE?!?

2nded
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 11:16 PM PST on May 13


You know, that said; davy - you're quite definitely a nutbar.
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 11:25 PM on May 13, 2007


Ethereal Bligh writes "Secondly, I don't understand how you think that Brian's argument is substantial enough to warrant being taken seriously and on its own. "

Well, it started out as an off-hand comment, to paraphrase, "looks like Elron's taking a page from Maimonides". It wasn't meant to be bullet-proof scholarship.

Had greatgefilte immediately commented, "as a former Orthodox scholar, yes Maimonides did say similar things", we'd all have just gone on.

Instead, we had a clash of the selective-Maimonides-quoting-Titans, and yes, people reading into Brian B.'s motivations. motty becomes convinced that no respected Torah commenter scholar could ever have said such a bad thing and so anyone saying otherwise musty be a crypto-anti-Semite. Then Brian B. was clueless enough to find support for what he'd said in the writing of a controversial but legit scholar, unfortunately quoted on a wacko hate site.

But at the end, Brian B., infelicitous as he was, happened to be more or less right.

And frankly, I'm more offended by "concern trolls" screeching "you can't say that! Ban him!" than with off-hand comments. Mostly because this is a community blog. I'd be more sympathetic to motty if this were a thrice-edited peer-reviewed journal, but if we held all comments to that standard, only you, Ethereal Bligh, and paulsc would ever write a comment.
posted by orthogonality at 11:27 PM on May 13, 2007


*still wondering what paulsc would make of all of this*
posted by forallmankind at 11:31 PM on May 13, 2007


Orthogonality: Ok, so Matt (and by extension any other site owner) ought to delete anti-semitic comments, because your friend is gullible?

Oh, wait, that's not what you said. You said "if anti-semitic propaganda is left unchallenged". So, did you challenge this is the Blue?


No, I didn't challenge it in the Blue because I didn't read that thread.

The reason I started commenting in this thread is that Brian B. was being disingenuous in his characterization of Alabaster's Archive, the site from which he got the work by Israel Shahak. I wanted it to be clear that Alabaster's Archive was a clearly anti-semitic site.

I didn't call for him to be banned. I wouldn't shed any tears if Brian B. was banned, but it's not my call and I don't see why my opinion should matter (for my general thoughts on trolls, in the form of a song, I refer you to my userpage).

Orthogonality: This is essentially a modern day taboo, an idea that some things are too dangerous to even mention. It's silly an anti-rational superstition, some sort of magical thinking that "hate sites" are such super-powerful contaminants that even linking to one cross-contaminates anyone seeing the link. That the words on the hate site are some sort of wily demon that can "possess" us if we ever release it by mentioning its infernal name.

No, a hate site won't possess anyone. However, as I have witnessed in my own life, terrible ideas can seep into the brains of otherwise good and intelligent human beings. I myself, at one time or another, have held stupid ideas. Stupid, dangerous ideas should be fought. The way to fight them is with logic, ridicule and other rhetorical devices (my wife, on the other, believes that the way to fight stupid ideas is with a big stick, on which it says: "you're a big poopyhead")

orthogonality: But the Holocaust (a terrible thing) and a long history of anti-Semitism (a terrible thing) doesn't mean that no Jew should ever be criticized, or that any such criticism is necessarily motivated by anti-Semitic animus.

Are you saying that Brian B. was criticizing Maimonides? Because what he said in the Scientology thread was that he likened the Jews, as a people, to Scientologists, saying, essentially, that all Jews support the killing of non-Jews. If he'd said that Maimonides was in favor of killing non-Jews, then there might have been a reasonable discussion (as far as I've been able to tell, Maimonides distinguished between Jews and non-Jews, but said that it wasn't okay to kill non-Jews. I hope greatgefilte can set me straight if I've got this wrong). But what he did was make the link between Scientology and Judaism as a whole and then back it up with a link to a text stored on a clearly anti-semitic site (I refer you to my first comment). I don't have to be a "paranoid chickenshit" to think that Brian B. is arguing from a anti-semitic position.

As a further demonstration of his intellectual dishonesty, he called me a liar for saying that he presented the anti-semitic site as neutral and factual (which I responded to here). I hope he's just someone who can't back down from an argument, but I think he's just a troll. At worst he's an anti-semite.

I'm stepping away from this thread now, because my wife is threatening to call me out on the gray for spending more time writing comments in thread rather than cuddling her. She has also rewritten the words of The Birmingham Complaints Choir to refer to MetaFilter:

Why does my computer take so very long?
Why can't mathowie talk to anyone?
And why are flameouts so addictive to read?
I want my money back!
MetaTalk's like a cul-de-sac!
And people are always posting NewsFilter.
Why don't they favorite more?
FPPs were good before!
And I'm thirsty!

(this was written by grapefruitmoon not me)

And with that, I'm off to cuddle my wife, before she eats my head.
posted by Kattullus at 11:32 PM on May 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


I've linked to this comment a few times before but it's more than relevant here.
posted by puke & cry at 11:40 PM on May 13, 2007


And frankly, I'm more offended by “concern trolls” screeching “you can't say that! Ban him!” than with off-hand comments.

Actually...me, too.

I don't know your general position on this, but I'm very uncomfortable with how MetaFilter's leftiness results in a hypersensitivity to some kinds of (arguably) hateful speech but tolerates or even encourages other (arguably) hateful speech.

Yeah, I'm well aware of varying social contexts and I'm not arguing for an “it's all equally bad (and therefore unaccepable)” or an “it's all equally bad (and therefore accepable)” position. But my concern is that reasonable people (and I mean all reasonable people, not just reasonable mefites) will not be able to agree on relative amounts of badness except at the extremes. Yet, as I said, I think that there's a lot of sensitivity to certain kinds of (arguably) hateful speech upon which reasonable people will disagree and a lack of sensitivity to other (arguably) hateful speech upon which reasonable will also disagree.

Therefore, I think something approaching beyond-MetaFilter majority standards for unacceptable speech should apply, not our subcultural version. I think it should truly be egregious and unarguably unacceptable to result in things like MetaTalk callouts and certainly things like deletions, time-outs, and bannings.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:43 PM on May 13, 2007




Kattullus writes "Are you saying that Brian B. was criticizing Maimonides? Because what he said in the Scientology thread was that he likened the Jews, as a people, to Scientologists, saying, essentially, that all Jews support the killing of non-Jews."

Where'd he say that? He said Maimonides and Elron had similar ideas about people outside their respective sects. Where's he say that all Jews agree with Maimonides?

Giving a quick look to his posts in the blue (maybe I missed something?), I don't see Brian B. ever making a claim about all "Jews, as a people". Now maybe you inferred that, but if so, it's your problem -- your belief in some pernicious group responsibility --, not Brian B.'s.

Martin Luther said some terrible anti-Semitic things. If I criticize Martin Luther for that, I'm not saying all modern Lutherans agree with Luther's anti-Semitism.

Indeed, it's possibly to say "I find some of what Maimonides (or Luther) said to be morally repugnant, while still agreeing with Maimonides (or Luther) on other things, and still seeing Maimonides (or Luther) as a great teacher in my religious tradition", as some Protestants (and some Jews) do.

For the record, I think it's bad and pernicious to have different moral standards for the way to treat people because of who their parents were or because of what religious faiths they hold. To that extent they advocate otherwise, it iss my moral belief that Maimonides's and Luther's teachings are both wrong. Because of that moral belief of mine (but not solely because of that), I am opposed to treating Jews or Lutherans differently in the moral realm*, including blaming all Jews or all Lutherans for what one Jew or one Lutheran did.

(*I'm not opposed to treating them differently in non moral realms: I'd serve a Lutheran, but not an Orthodox Jew, pork.)
posted by orthogonality at 11:55 PM on May 13, 2007


"Therefore, I think something approaching beyond-MetaFilter majority standards for unacceptable speech should apply, not our subcultural version. I think it should truly be egregious and unarguably unacceptable to result in things like MetaTalk callouts and certainly things like deletions, time-outs, and bannings."


I generally agree on this, however: call-outs aren't terribly negative. I think that something that edges the line can and should be "called out" and hashed over.

However, I think that this thread mostly existed to goad Brian B., and both this thread and the other one were mostly crap and demagoguery muesli.
posted by klangklangston at 11:56 PM on May 13, 2007


(I'll now interrupt this Metatalk thread for a solipsistic derail.)

"davy - you're quite definitely a nutbar."

I'm really glad to read that, because that's why they pay me the big bucks. For over 20 years now. The last time they made me see a shrink specifically to report to them he said basically "If somebody handed this guy a job he couldn't keep it; he'd be fired before his first paycheck for being an obvious fruitcake." Then during my last re-evalution I reminded them of that, then told something them "But don't take our word for it: even my best friends tell me my Internet history shows that to be true." So for my next re-evalutation I won't bother spending ten days typing a three page letter, I'll just hand 'em a list of my login names and where I've used them. And I gather that it's not just that I have "rather unorthodox opinions" but that I say them in remarkable ways; people tell me I even laugh like a psycho, whether or not they can hear what I'm laughing at. I'm set for life! They even give me my meds at a very low co-pay, including the Risperdal I'm about to take because I'm having such a hard time "winding down" so I can go to sleep (what the MD prescribed it for the last time that happened -- on MetaTalk yet).
posted by davy at 11:57 PM on May 13, 2007


Boy. This thread has been a whole bucketful of suck. 266 comments, and I still have no idea if Maimonides actually said what he has been quoted as saying.

Seconded.

But note, I'd rather hear the propaganda and the rebuttals than have it all stricken from the site. How am I supposed to learn about any of this?

Full derail, though. Belongs in the grey it does. Not that that Scientology thread was going anywhere it hasn't been, repeatedly, on the blue. Cults are partly what a thing is but mostly what a thing does. Can we get a bullet summary of conclusions from past threads at the start of rehashed fpp subjects? Cause we're not gaining a speck of ground.
posted by dreamsign at 12:01 AM on May 14, 2007


Added to my list of insults that sound like a British place-name: titting buckwhistle
posted by jaysus chris at 12:02 AM on May 14, 2007


This has all the makings of a Metafilter soap opera!

If I may, I humbly suggest some titles:
- One Snark To Live
- Threads Of Our Lives
- The Young, And Also The Not-So-Young, and the Restless
posted by spiderskull at 12:03 AM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


(And yes dirtynumbangelboy, my "SO" did eventually start giving me Those Looks before she went to bed in her own room where she can't me bang on the keyboard; I'm glad I caught on before she had to SAY anything, it's NOT my contention that I need to be locked up for my own good after all, like I like being able to have my very own Internet connection.)
posted by davy at 12:04 AM on May 14, 2007


well, I'm glad you took it in the observational sense that I meant it
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 12:05 AM on May 14, 2007


"The Young, And Also The Not-So-Young, and the Restless"

Very good y'all, I like young folks who pay attention. Now c'mere and sit on Uncle Davy's lap while his medication starts working.

By the way, I'm also glad I can also tell when Reisling starts to go off. I was saved from asking AskMetafilter if I should eat the half-can of fried crickets I've had sitting in my fridge for a month because on my own I decided to microwave them "just to be sure" but then the baggie melted, spilling them all over the floor when I took the baggie out. Somehow the thought of eating even dead bugs from a dirty kitchen floor made me settle for scrambled eggs instead, IYKWIM(AITYD).
posted by davy at 12:18 AM on May 14, 2007


What this thread needs is some pictures of cute cats with whimsical captions. Only without the cute and without the cats.

Because YOU did this to me! You kept me up this late with your awesome flameout threads.
posted by Eideteker at 12:27 AM on May 14, 2007


"However, I think that this thread mostly existed to goad Brian B., and both this thread and the other one were mostly crap and demagoguery muesli."

DING! DING!! DING!!! Don Pardo, tell him what he's won!

(A Brand! New! Goat!)
posted by davy at 12:27 AM on May 14, 2007


Eideteker, want some medication? Since I've been drinking too I only took half a Risperdal to start; rub my neck and I'll share the other half.

(Note to whatever applicable law-enforcement agencies, I was JOKING. I know it's a violation of Federal Law to share my pills, it says so in tiny print right on the stick-on label.)
posted by davy at 12:32 AM on May 14, 2007


HAI! I'M ON METAFILTER AND I READ THIS WHOLE EXCRUCIATINGLY BORING THREAD.

*sobs*
posted by Hat Maui at 12:43 AM on May 14, 2007


p.s.: PLEASE BRING BACK THE IMG TAG STAT k bi
posted by Hat Maui at 12:47 AM on May 14, 2007


...And an aspirin, a benadryl, a vitamin E, two "mucous relief" pills, two FiberCons, and two fish oil capsules. I'm tempted to take some DXM and chromium so I'll have interesting dreams when I finally crash but I'm not sure that's such a great idea: my last interesting dream concerned being forced to do a Live Sex Show with the Sororal Twin of the Beast of R'lyeh.

Dammit Hat Maui, you're one tough audience member. You want your money back?

Oh I'm sorry Brian B., I stole this "flameout" thread they gave you. You can have it back in the morning, I promise.
posted by davy at 12:48 AM on May 14, 2007


Damn!
posted by Ceiling Cat at 12:54 AM on May 14, 2007


Brian B., if you don't care what anyone says, why are you here?
posted by Snyder at 1:19 AM on May 14, 2007


The fact that Brian B. is well versed in early christian history and had supposedly read alot of Maimonides, yet claims not to have heard of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion is utterly unbelievable. It almost make it seem like he is deliberately trolling the site.
posted by afu at 1:28 AM on May 14, 2007 [3 favorites]


"It almost make it seem like he is deliberately trolling the site."

If so, why are you giving him attention then? Are you trying to "feed" the "troll"?
posted by davy at 1:34 AM on May 14, 2007


The fact that Brian B. is well versed in early Christian history and had supposedly read a lot of Maimonides, yet claims not to have heard of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion is utterly unbelievable.

It is weird. But he could just be, for example, a sheltered theologian or similar with little experience with related, wider issues. I mean, I feel certain I could find within my circle of college friends someone that fits your description. The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and its history is notorious and therefore infamous among certain groups, obviously well-represented here at MeFi. That makes it hard for us to get our heads around someone being ignorant of it yet being aware of what seems like related-yet-similarly-esoteric subjects. But it's certainly possible.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 1:35 AM on May 14, 2007


It is weird. But he could just be, for example, a sheltered theologian or similar with little experience with related, wider issues. I mean, I feel certain I could find within my circle of college friends someone that fits your description.

It is possible, but I don't think it's likely, plus there's the fact that the only links he could fund were from a hate site and a christian conspiracy fight. That doesn't seem to fit in the mold of a sheltered theologian or someone who is unfamiliar with The Protocols.

Maybe I am feeding the troll by pointing this out, but several people here are making the argument that Brian B. was just trying to have an honest argument, which I think is far from the case.
posted by afu at 1:46 AM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


HAI! I'M ON METAFILTER AND I READ THIS WHOLE EXCRUCIATINGLY BORING THREAD.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph the turd-burgling carpenter, so did I. You know how many boobies I could have looked at in this very same browser in that same period of time? I have to get my priorities in order.
posted by maxwelton at 1:50 AM on May 14, 2007


Boobies?
posted by davy at 1:59 AM on May 14, 2007


This is the best Metafilter flame-out I've ever read. And to think I thought this kind of thing only happened on dead threads.

Also: community dead. Is community alive?
posted by thecaddy at 2:04 AM on May 14, 2007


C'mon people, can't we do 400? Don't we deserve it? We've come this far!
posted by conch soup at 2:41 AM on May 14, 2007


Thanks for keeping me entertained in my insomnia. Some of the comments in this thread read like they were written by the duclod man.
posted by jtron at 3:00 AM on May 14, 2007


C'mon people, can't we do 400?

Damn!
posted by Ceiling Cat at 3:01 AM on May 14, 2007


Good morning!

Uncontroversial free speech is never threatened with censorship, and any controversial free speech can be seen as trolling - orthogonality

My wife and I are currently teaching our six-year-old that it is not only what you say, but how you say it. You and Brian B. may want to sit in on some of those lessons.
posted by Rock Steady at 4:28 AM on May 14, 2007


I read this whole thread too, and I haven't seen all that many calls for a banning. They're there, but it doesn't approach a majority.

Because I commented about Brian B.s' idiocy, I'll be clear and say that I have no desire for him to get banned. I think he's played every anti-semitic card here, starting with outrageous and indefensible comments (and I think HM is wrong, the citation chosen for those comments is material), and moving on to fine-toothed parsing and a failure to address the substance of the objections to his speech. The defensive cherry-picking with respect to judaic blood libel bullshit is precisely the point, and I disagree that he's been vindicated by the actual text of Maimonides, as his point was very different.

However, just because he seems to be an irrational and rude writer who has trouble stringing two thoughts together coherently does not mean he should be banned. A nice MeTa callout where his inanity is displayed for all to see isn't a bad idea, though.
posted by OmieWise at 4:33 AM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


I'd serve a Lutheran, but not an Orthodox Jew, pork.

I'd happily pork an Orthodox Jew, but I wouldn't get served by any Lutherans.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:39 AM on May 14, 2007


Oh well... since it's come to this, I might as well relive some past glories...

ahem... if the piano player would be so kind to strike up the tune of Bohemian Rhapsody...


Who is that asshole?
Why won't he go away?
Mocked by a troll
Who'll be here until judgement day.

Avert your eyes
Look up from the screen and see,
He's just a dumb troll, no need to vent your spleen
Because, see, like trolls come, trolls will go,
Don't let him harsh your mellow.
Everything the troll blows out of his asshole is gas,
Poo gas.

Admins, his ass will ban.
That's the fate of every troll
Once his schtick get's really old.
Users, there's no need to bait
the troll, he'll be annoying anyway.
Users, oooo,
He means to make you mad.
If Brian's back again this time tomorrow,
Carry on, carry on, 'cause he doesn't really matter.

Oh why am I still here?
Sends shivers down my spine,
Mind is aching all the time.
Goodbye everybody, I've got to go,
Gotta leave the troll behind and his doucheface
Users, oooo Everything the troll blows
There's no need to stay,
The scope of his lameitude is plain to all.

I see a little silhouetto of a troll,
Hey motty, hey motty, will you start a call out thread?
Banhammers and flameouts very very painful me.
Heywood Mogroot Heywood Mogroot
Heywood Mogroot Heywood Mogroot
Heywood Mogroot OmieWise
Ethereal Bligh igh igh igh igh
He's just a dumb troll and nobody likes him.
There is no need to reply with ferocity,
Spare us a thread from his monstrosity.
Trolls come, trolls go, will you let it go.
Bismillah! No! We will not let it go.
Let it go!
Bismillah! We will not let it go.
Let it go!
Bismillah! We will not let it go.
Let him go.
Will not let him go. Let him go.
Will not let him go. Let him go
Never never never never never never never let it go!
No no no no no no no
Oh for fuck's sake, oh for fuck's sake, oh for fuck's sake let it go!
mathowie has a hammer put aside for him, for him, for him!

So you think you can mock us and shit in this thread?
So you think you can trash it and leave it for dead?
Oh Brian. Can't do this to us, Brian.
Just gotta get out, just gotta get right outta here.

He doesn't really matter.
Anyone can see,
He doesn't really matter, he doesn't really matter to me.

Everything the troll blows...
posted by Kattullus at 4:57 AM on May 14, 2007 [3 favorites]


Coincidently, I've been reading Dawkins's The God Delusion, and have just now arrived at the part where he quotes Maimonides.

Dawkins explains:
...'Thou shalt not kill' was never intended to mean what we now think it means. It meant, very specifically, thou shalt not kill Jews.... Moses Maimonides, the highly respected twelfth-century rabbi and physician, expounds the full meaning of 'Thou shalt not kill' as follows: 'If one slays a single Israelite, he transgresses a negative commandment, for Scripture says, Thou shalt not murder. If one murders willfully in the presence of witnesses, he is put to death by the sword. Needless to say, one is not put to death if he kills a heathen'
Dawkins goes on to quote Maimonides on Joshua's sack of Jericho and the genocide of the seven non-Jewish tribes extant in the land promised to the Jews by their God. Dawkins:
Once again the sage Maimonides, often cited for his scholarly wisdom, is in no doubt where he stands on this issue: 'It is the positive commandment to destroy the seven nations, as it is said Thou shalt utterly destroy them. If one doe snot put to death any of them that falls into one's power, one transgresses a negative commandment, as it is said: Thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth..
motty's original complaint to start this whole Metatalk thread was "So MeFi user Brian B. has chosen [...] to spread a bit of good old-fashioned antisemitism, selective quotes from the Talmud styley, explaining why, apparently, Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews, something my own rabbi omitted to mention at any point...."

"[A]pparently, [some] Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews" precisely because that's what God commanded. Maimonides, whatever other faults he may have had, should be congratulated for his consistency in following The Lord's commandments.

As motty went one to tell us that he was in physical distress because of this, "breathing very slowly and deeply and still seeing everything through an extremely red mist and [he] would appreciate some suggestions", I suppose one suggestion is that motty's next step might be to ask his "own rabbi" why he "omitted to mention at any point" anything about Maimonides or perhaps more centrally, the entire Book of Joshua, and why the morality of the God of Israel (as depicted in that God's own inspired Holy Book and His commandments to His people) seems to motty to be anti-Semitic libels.
posted by orthogonality at 4:57 AM on May 14, 2007 [5 favorites]


The funny thing is, these two comments right in a row? I agree with both of them!

This fucking thing again?

Taking three sentences out of the Mishne Torah and asking Jews to defend them, as though they have some obligation to do so is one of my all time favorite exercises.

There are tens of thousands of pages of Jewish law and there's a lot of fascinating and beautiful as well as anachronistic, cruel and mean stuff. You read three lines of a massive text which is essentially a restatement of the entirety of Jewish law, tell me it's what the Rambam thought, what I believe in, and tell me I belong to a hateful sect. Fuck that thing. You keep it in your dirty little hand.
posted by kosem at 12:53 AM on May 14

Afro, I've never seen a bigger crowd of paranoid chickenshits in one place. You must be joking.
posted by Brian B. at 12:54 AM on May 14

posted by Captaintripps at 5:12 AM on May 14, 2007


Well, orthogonality, the point you make, which may not be the one you intended, is that context informs the way in which we understand and respond to arguments. Dawkins' inclusion of those criticisms of judaism within a larger argument he is developing about the utility of religion is completely appropriate. His citation of Maimonides likewise. Were his footnotes to point to the book "The truth of the blood libel: Why what the jews call "myths" are all you really need to know about judaism" as the source of his Maimonides quotes his argument would be suspect. We might still grant that the citation is correct, but we'd be completely justified in wondering if there were other motives at play that made it more likely that Dawkins could be disingenuous in this instance.

I'm sympathetic to your point that Judaism too needs to be criticized, but I haven't really seen people arguing otherwise in this thread.
posted by OmieWise at 5:28 AM on May 14, 2007


Understand, I'm not calling Judaism "a hateful sect", or seeking to "justify" the Shoah, anymore than I condemn all Americans or seek to justify 9/11 for the sins of slavery and Native American genocide. (As some American Christians, admittedly on the fringes, have tried to "justify" 9/11 as a "punishment" for homosexual marriage or abortion or whatnot.)

Do I think most modern Jews believe that it's no sin to kill a Gentile? No, no I do not. And I would oppose any attempt to smear them with Maimonides's brush.

But frankly, it's impossible to understand America without understanding the impact on the American experience of slavery and genocide.

Is it possible to understand Judaism or the Jewish experience without reference to the Book of Joshua? I'm sure different people would give different answers, and I don't presume to have the answer.

Certainly, to understand the the Jewish experience of the last 500 years, you have to reference the Shoah, the expulsion or forced conversion in Spain, the pogroms and rapes and the blood libels all over Europe.

It doesn't make the inhumanity of the blood libel any less of a lie that Maimonides's teachings are true. The truth of Maimonides doesn't excuse a single forced conversion in spain, or single stone thrown at a single Jew in Poland, or a single pogrom in the Pale of Settlement, or a single cattle-car unloading at a single Vernichtungslager in Germany.

The blood libel, the Protocols, the modern lies about Hollywood and the international banks are lies. Call them out, call them anti-Semitism, please do!

But not every criticism of Jews or Judaism or Israel is a lie or motivated in anti-Semitism. Don't smear people with association with the Inquisition, the pogrom, and the death-camp when they are relating well-attested truths of history.

Disagree with Maimonides (or agree with him, if you must). But don't tell us he never wrote what he wrote, using the bludgeon of an accusation of "anti-Semite!" to win the argument.
posted by orthogonality at 5:36 AM on May 14, 2007 [8 favorites]


Do I think most modern Jews believe that it's no sin to kill a Gentile? No, no I do not. And I would oppose any attempt to smear them with Maimonides's brush.

What a nasty and disingenous troll this is. I understand you perfectly well, Orthogonality.
posted by motty at 6:03 AM on May 14, 2007


I'm a lurker, but commented briefly in that thread. It's just this -- yesterday morning I was out for breakfast with wife and baby. At the next table were several older children, one of which started to play with our empty stroller, but seemed to be doing no damage. A few minutes later, come around to look at the baby in her chair, and suddenly started to rattle her chair, at which point, of course we stopped him.

And the point is: I know epsilon > 0 about maimonedes, assume delta > 0 about Brain B.'s authortial intent. There's internal consistency to his argument, but doesn't quite know what he's doing and needed to be gently informed.

I'm sure there's an epsilon-delta formula in there for the optimal allocation of banhammering, but I'm worried if I get the math mathowie will end up banned. (again.)
posted by ~ at 6:14 AM on May 14, 2007


(sorry about atrocious english.)
posted by ~ at 6:15 AM on May 14, 2007


Fascinating, ortho, and thanks, finally, for an answer to the question. I have zero agenda, but am curious to learn more about this now (raised RC, I should at least learn a bit more about the origin of the commandments and whether they mean what I've been taught they mean).

Cheers.
posted by dreamsign at 6:20 AM on May 14, 2007


For reals?
posted by chuckdarwin at 6:24 AM on May 14, 2007


orthogonality: Great comments, very well put; ditto klangklangston.

Personally, I don't think Brian B. is anti-semitic, just anti-religious. While it would have helped immensely had he linked to a less inflammatory website, his original comments don't offend me any more (Or less) than when folks quote Scripture or Christian texts that defend or promote offensive attitudes and actions. This is a logical extension of the LOLXTIAN mindset (LOLJOOS?), and the thing that strikes me most odd is that Brian B. doesn't have more of the folks from that silly crocoduck thread defending him.

Davy, honestly, while I appreciate your forthrightness, you always seem dead set on sabotaging any valid point you make by delivering it in a style that's part gasping fish flopping on the pier and ADD-ridden ten year old hepped up on pixie sticks.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 6:26 AM on May 14, 2007


Remember, folks, you're holding Judaism to words that were written in the 12th century.

Scientology believes this stuff now.

12th century != 21st century.
posted by Malor at 6:34 AM on May 14, 2007


Disagree with Maimonides (or agree with him, if you must). But don't tell us he never wrote what he wrote, using the bludgeon of an accusation of "anti-Semite!" to win the argument.
I don't think anyone said that Maimonides never wrote that. I dispute that that one cherry-picked phrase is "the truth of Maimonides." Reducing his legacy to that seems disingenuous at best; a strangely perverse reading of his legacy and significance. Pulling the quote out of context where and from whence it was for a throwaway remark looks downright suspicious. When called on that, compounding the misunderstanding, if that's all it was, looks worse still.
posted by Abiezer at 6:36 AM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


though I'm not sure where he got that from...

   Then you didn't click on the link to check.


Sorry, I meant "where Maimonides got it from," not where you got it from.

The "kill the shiksa" bit comes from here (in Hebrew, I'm afraid). And he references a pretty isolated incident in Numbers 31 to bolster his opinion.

The funny thing about all this is that even in the times of Maimonides and his peers, such discussion of death penalties and lashings and all that was purely academic; capital punishment of any form was abolished once the Jews were exiled and the Sanhedrin dissolved.
posted by greatgefilte at 6:43 AM on May 14, 2007


"I'm sympathetic to your point that Judaism too needs to be criticized, but I haven't really seen people arguing otherwise in this thread."

That's becauase we've been too busy arguing over whether or not Brian B. should be "banniated" for criticising Judaism. People like motty, who think free speech applies only to people who freely say what they want them to (and how they want it said), which in this thread means they think that anyone who criticises anything about Judaism or defends anyone who does is an evil Nazi troll who must be dealt with harshly chop-chop.

I'd've thought such dingenuity was beneath you, OmieWise.
posted by davy at 7:08 AM on May 14, 2007


Attention dingenuous davy: the issue is not whether criticism of Judaism is verbotten, but whether we should link to hate-friendly sites.
posted by ibmcginty at 7:24 AM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


420.
posted by Stynxno at 7:31 AM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


This is the problem with permitting religion-critical and accusatory posts on Metafilter.

Hate on Scientology? Permitted. Atheists hate on Christians? Permitted. Christians hate on atheists? Permitted. Hate on Muslims? Permitted? Hate on Jews? Permitted?

If you are going to allow the disgusting and pointless attack of Belief X on Belief Y--which is always nothing more than controversy-causing noise that does not change minds or advance any meaningful discussion--then you have to allow all of them.

An alternative way to deal with the issue is to adopt the principle that when it comes to matters of belief, we understand other believe differently, so we will not put up comments directed at insulting those who believe differently.
posted by dios at 7:33 AM on May 14, 2007


stinky!
posted by dios at 7:33 AM on May 14, 2007


People like motty, who think free speech applies only to people who freely say what they want them to (and how they want it said), which in this thread means they think that anyone who criticises anything about Judaism or defends anyone who does is an evil Nazi troll who must be dealt with harshly chop-chop.

Davy, are you under the misapprehension that this is a government supported site? There is no guarantee of free speech here. The administrators are free to remove any post they want, and to ban anyone they want, at any time, without explanation.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:34 AM on May 14, 2007


Remember, folks, you're holding Judaism to words that were written in the 12th century.

Nobody is frickin holding nothing to anything.

It's interesting and it may be historical fact. Don't go getting your panties in a bunch.
posted by dreamsign at 7:34 AM on May 14, 2007


which is always nothing more than controversy-causing noise that does not change minds or advance any meaningful discussion

How loud exactly do I have to go LA LA LA with my fingers in my ears to keep from learning something today?

Cause I wasn't planning on doing that.
posted by dreamsign at 7:47 AM on May 14, 2007


the issue is not whether criticism of Judaism is verbotten, but whether we should link to hate-friendly sites.

Worth noting again, for the orthos in the thread: For many, the problem that primarily concerned us here was Brian B's gullible defense of the Alabaster site. He obviously needs to recalibrate his anti-religion guns to exclude that kind of idiocy, but no where has he come close to acknowledging that.

Seems obvious he doesn't have the cojones to admit he missed that one. Seems equally obvious he's lost a lot of credibility on religious issues.
posted by mediareport at 7:51 AM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


This is so retarded. I keep on smelling smoke, keep tracking the burning smell back to this thread, keep coming back here to check on it, and STILL NO FLAMEOUT.

jeez, get with the program. I can't even pop my corn with this.
posted by exlotuseater at 7:56 AM on May 14, 2007


I think everybody who has posted in this thread owes an apology to everybody else who has posted in this thread.

Sorry guys.
posted by hoverboards don't work on water at 7:56 AM on May 14, 2007


I'm only sorry it's not hot enough in here.
posted by exlotuseater at 7:56 AM on May 14, 2007


I think everybody who has posted in this thread owes an apology to everybody else who has posted in this thread.

Yeah, I'm sorry too. Do not feed, etc.
posted by yhbc at 8:03 AM on May 14, 2007


If there's one thing to learn from this thread, it is this:

Jews are tetchy.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:04 AM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


Exlotus— Who are you, Nelly?
posted by klangklangston at 8:10 AM on May 14, 2007


I'm sorry.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:14 AM on May 14, 2007


I'm not sorry (antisemitism thread) you're the one that's sorry (antisemitism thread) you're making me sorry....
posted by OmieWise at 8:17 AM on May 14, 2007


I'm sorry.

No, wait, I had no part in this.
Nevermind.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 8:29 AM on May 14, 2007


you're holding Judaism to words that were written in the 12th century

No we're not. Brian linked Hubbard's "fair game" outlook to the 12th century teachings, not modern-day Jewish jurisprudence.

The extent that modern-day Jews hold eg. Maimonides current (apparently not much) is their problem, not Brian Bs'.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 8:32 AM on May 14, 2007


sorry
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 8:32 AM on May 14, 2007


dios!
posted by Stynxno at 8:44 AM on May 14, 2007


Hi guys! Today my sandwich is ham and muenster.
posted by thirteenkiller at 8:55 AM on May 14, 2007


"I think everybody who has posted in this thread owes an apology to everybody else who has posted in this thread."

I stand 100% by everything I have written in this thread.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 9:13 AM on May 14, 2007


I was standing behind mr_crash_davis when he cut the cheese. I've since moved away.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 9:20 AM on May 14, 2007


Jarlsberg Swiss was on sale at the Acme, which in Philly is pronounced "Ack-uh-me". I have paired it with oven-roasted turkey breast, adorned with mayo and a dab of deli mustard, all between two slices of whole wheat.
posted by Mister_A at 9:23 AM on May 14, 2007


Omiewise, I don't remember you in that thread. Perhaps you could link a comment or two.

Brian, I just read that thread today, and you don't represent yourself well in that thread, especially after other people tried to explain why you weren't understanding what lalochezia was saying.

I think it could be argued that a similar thing is happening here: you're arguing, albeit I think jokingly, that Hubbard learned everything he knew about the treatment of non-Scientologists from Maimonides, when in fact this made up a small minority of Maimonides' teachings and thus seemed incongruous. When you chose to defend your position, rather than simply quoting the Talmudic verse specifically, you pointed to a book which was hosted on an archive that was very clearly anti-semitic or, at the very least, heavily biased against Jews and called the archive "scholarly."

Some members of the thread were predictably upset because it suggested that your angle of research derived from an anti-semitic perspective and this is very threatening in a context where Jewish people fairly recently were killed exclusively for being Jewish, for precisely the reasons that were laid out in many of the books in that archive.
posted by Deathalicious at 9:32 AM on May 14, 2007


Deathalicious, stop being on topic. you're ruining the thread.
posted by Stynxno at 9:36 AM on May 14, 2007


Somebody shoot me an email when the hugs begin. I don't want to miss them.
posted by mds35 at 9:39 AM on May 14, 2007


>>What a nasty and disingenous troll this is. I understand you perfectly well, Orthogonality.

Motty, you're well out of line here. Ortho posted a very reasonable and moderate comment which was in no way anti-semitic. Accusing even the mildest criticism of being a "troll" wins you no points even amongst your supporters in this thread.
posted by modernnomad at 9:46 AM on May 14, 2007 [3 favorites]


Chipotle burrito, bros. Flavored with Hitler sauce.
posted by Kwine at 10:32 AM on May 14, 2007


I don't agree, modernnomad, and I don't see how I am out of line. The phrase I was calling trollery - which I stand by - was Do I think most modern Jews believe that it's no sin to kill a Gentile? No, no I do not. And I would oppose any attempt to smear them with Maimonides's brush.

The key nasty phrase here is "smear them with Maimonides's brush", and the unstated implication alluded to passim is that Maimonides believed it was no sin to kill a non-Jew. Which is, I'm sorry, not just bollocks, but, in the context of a long history of people taking out of context phrases from or misapprehensions about Jewish texts as justification for all kinds of horrors - antisemitic bollocks at that.

None of the stuff from the Mishneh Torah which has been quoted contradicts this. For all that the stuff about the shiksas is just as vile as the homophobic parts of Leviticus, it still doesn't mean that Maimonides believed it was no sin to kill a non-Jew full stop end of story. However, Orthoganality's text is carefully constructed to make you think he did. You're damn right I'm smelling an antisemitic rat.

His previous post to that includes another bit of trollische sleight of hand, where he conflates the instructions given for a specific historical war in the Book of Joshua with normative Jewish law and leaves the lay reader with the impression that the wanton and willy nilly murder of non-Jews is not only permitted by Maimonides but has biblical precedent. Neither point is actually the case, but that is not the impression the reader might be left with.

Orthog also wrote "one suggestion is that motty's next step might be to ask his "own rabbi" why he "omitted to mention at any point" anything about Maimonides or perhaps more centrally, the entire Book of Joshua, and why the morality of the God of Israel (as depicted in that God's own inspired Holy Book and His commandments to His people) seems to motty to be anti-Semitic libels".

Again, he is begging the question and he is repeating antisemitic libels. By dressing up his posts with flannel and laying it on thick that he is not - of course - antisemitic - but wishes merely to 'criticise' those parts of Judaism he sees worthy of criticism - he is making it very easy for people to assume that he is being entirely reasonable and that the racist libels he cleverly embeds in the flannel are in fact the case.

It so happens that I am entirely in favour of free speech. I am not a dogmatist (actually, Judaism doesn't have dogma), I am not religious, and I am quite happy for people to criticise Jews, Judaism, Zionism and Israel as much as they like. Indeed, there is a great deal to criticise in all four cases without having to lie or misrepresent anything. Orthog's posts, however, based as they are on lies and misrepresentations, do not fall into the category of valid criticism but either of deliberate racist slurs or a level of factual and historical misunderstanding that does not sit well with the cleverness of the texts themselves.

It's hard not to conclude that the lies and misrepresentations are deliberate.
posted by motty at 10:32 AM on May 14, 2007 [3 favorites]


i have never before heard fishing referred to as "trollery", nor seen it characterized as "trollische".
posted by quonsar at 10:38 AM on May 14, 2007


You're probably all wondering what *I* think.

(crickets)

I'm, uh, gonna go look at some pictures of penguins now.
posted by evilcolonel at 10:43 AM on May 14, 2007


I have to say, it has at least been a while since we've done something quite like this. So that's kind of nice. Bloody, awful, worst-of-metafilter stuff from my personal perspective, pretty much on all accounts.

Nuking the discussion early on would have been a reasonable move, administratively, not to surpress discussion of the issues (I think a calm and well-handled exploration of some of the stuff that has come up here would make for damned good mefi) but because it looked like, and turned out to be, a great big ugly mess in the making. But, on the bright side, it seems to be contained here, and hopefully there's been some getting-it-out-of-our-system catharsis so that we can have a few months without a repeat.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:45 AM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


The Wikipedia article on Maimonides is well worth reading, I believe; his family spent the decade when he was 13-23 running from a radical Berber Islamic sect which conquered his native city of Cordoba, as well as the rest of moorish Iberia, and of North Africa all the way to Egypt, and which gave the Jews of Cordoba a choice between conversion and death (does anyone know, by the way, whether Christmas and Easter hams became a tradition as part of a program to winkle out false converts to Christianity?). Considerable asperity toward Gentiles would seem to have been inevitable with that personal history.

But I really caught my breath when I read the bit about his Negative Theology:

For instance, one should not say that God exists in the usual sense of the term; all we can safely say is that God is not non-existent. We should not say that "God is wise"; but we can say that "God is not ignorant", i.e. in some way, God has some properties of knowledge. We should not say that "God is One", but we can state that "there is no multiplicity in God's being". In brief, the attempt is to gain and express knowledge of God by describing what God is not; rather than by describing what God "is".

I think one of the greatest leaps of creative genius in all of mathematics is Cantor's diagonal argument, in which Cantor proves the existence of trancendental numbers, but not only that, demonstrates that there are more of them than there are rational or algebraic numbers (an infinity greater than infinity), by writing down a list of all rational numbers and showing by a simple trick that there must be at least one number-- and by direct implication an unthinkably vast number of numbers-- not on the list. All this without being able to exhibit a single transcendental number!

Cantor chose the Hebrew alphabet for his hierarchy of infinities when almost everyone else in mathematics was using Greek, and I've wondered if something specifically Jewish could have been part of his inspiration. Well, if you take Negative Theology to imply that no list of attributes can begin to capture the essence of God, the answer would seem to be yes, and it affords a certain satisfaction to think the overwhelming sense of the numinous I felt when I first saw this argument might have such an impeccably legitimate theological lineage.
posted by jamjam at 10:55 AM on May 14, 2007 [16 favorites]


Thanks Motty, that was well-written and thoughtful, and I think I have a better understanding of where you are coming from.

Reading all the posts here I think part of the problem is that there is no clear line as to where crticism of Judaism transitions into anti-semitism. I think often when people point out "bad" things that are said in a given religious text, they are often coming at it from an anti-theistic perspective in general. When that anti-theism is directed at Judaism, it is easy to label it anti-semitic. But of course "anti-semitism" implicates a whole host of evils that atheism or general Dawkins-esque religious critiques do not.

I suppose what the discussion should teach us is that religious intolerance (from all quarters) is far too recent (and quite obviously ongoing) in our collective history to demand anything other than the utmost sensitivity on all sides.

Given history, it is understandable that Jews are going to be hyper-sensitive to anything or anyone that appears to be dredging up old anti-semitic canards -- as a people, they'd be foolish not to be wary. Yet also, given history, anyone who feels they are in danger of unfairly being labelled an anti-semite is going to react in the most forceful way they can, because no other label save for perhaps "paedophile" will so quickly destroy a person's standing in modern western society.
posted by modernnomad at 11:04 AM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Not that anyone cares at this point, but I thought that Orthogonality's phrasing of "Do I think most modern Jews believe that it's no sin to kill a Gentile? No, no I do not. And I would oppose any attempt to smear them with Maimonides's brush." was at best poorly-worded and could easily be interpreted as insulting and/or a troll.
i.e. "Do I think that most Roman Catholics believe that it is no sin to molest a child? No, no I do not. And I would oppose any attempt to smear them with Pope Benedict's brush."
Are there any modern jews who aren't complete nutters who believe that killing a gentile is OK?
posted by Challahtronix at 11:08 AM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


I think this was all worth it for jamjam's comment.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:14 AM on May 14, 2007


Challahtronix the world has moved on.
posted by thirteenkiller at 11:15 AM on May 14, 2007


Heirloom tomato salad with aged balsamic.
Vodka.
Cornbread.
posted by Dizzy at 11:20 AM on May 14, 2007


The problem with threads like this is that they tend to make the people on the right side of the argument (the anti-anti-semites) look as dumb as the people on the wrong side of the argument (the anti-semites).
posted by Bugbread at 11:21 AM on May 14, 2007


I also standby what I said early in this thread. Complete waste of time. Motty need not worry that I now have mistaken beliefs about Judaism because of Brian B. or orthogonality because I don't come to mefi for religious historical analysis. Likewise no worries that I take motty's charges of "racism" very seriously at all. Misrepresentations? Sure. But anyone whose first argument includes charges of both "anti-semitism" and "racism" is probably operating from hysterics rather than reason.

There have been good, illuminating arguments on metafilter. They usually included phrases such as "Good point! You do admit there is some ambiguity in this phrase, and my tendency is to interpret it as..." -and- "Yeah, but I wouldn't call that text authoritative. You see, as far as I know..."

Heated arguments never lead to either knowledge or truth. I'll just skip over them and I'd probably advise most others to do the same - unless you're a fan of soap operas or Jerry Springer type television.
posted by vacapinta at 11:23 AM on May 14, 2007


So, it's not OK to kill a gentile?

Then I'm not converting.
posted by Mister_A at 11:34 AM on May 14, 2007


Wait! Wait! A deal, I could make you! We'll grandfather in wedgies, say! How can you not like that?
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:37 AM on May 14, 2007


I would oppose any attempt to smear them with Maimonides's brush

Um, if I've read it right, the view of Maimonides [now superceded by all jewish law] is that a Jew who kills a gentile will be punished by god, not man.

How would that reassure a blaspheming atheist in 12th century Tel Aviv?
posted by dash_slot- at 12:00 PM on May 14, 2007


motty on orthogonality: The key nasty phrase here is "smear them with Maimonides's brush", and the unstated implication alluded to passim is that Maimonides believed it was no sin to kill a non-Jew. Which is, I'm sorry, not just bollocks--

I understand what you're saying, but I think the general rule of "don't assume malice where ignorance suffices" applies here.

As I understand it, Maimonides wasn't a perpetrator of a cruel and archaic system of laws, as he was portrayed by Israel Shahak--in the 12th century, when Maimonides lived, there was no Jewish state, and there hadn't been for centuries. Rather, Maimonides was a pathbreaking humanist scholar who produced commentary on the ancient Jewish laws, explaining the rationale behind them. (Most of his works were written in Arabic, by the way.)

But most people don't know this. So I think a fair number of people in this thread are getting the impression that Maimonides was advocating the death penalty for non-Jews in arbitrary circumstances, etc.

Heywood Mogroot: russil: from my reading brian's original, above, is not proposing a 1:1 identity between Hubbert's morality and Maimonides, just that there were parallels.

Actually, that's pretty much what Israel Shahak is claiming. As I posted above, Shahak fabricated a story about an orthodox Jew who left a non-Jew to die on Shabbat rather than call an ambulance.

As I understand it, Shahak's field of scholarship was chemistry, not history or Judaism.

Shahak himself is also an interesting and colorful figure. He was a concentration camp survivor himself. Here's an argument between Shahak and Timothy Garton Ash. Garton Ash concludes:
Professor Shahak's concluding words about the special kind of moral courage required to confront the failings of "one's own group" are eloquent and well-taken. As an Englishman, I may find it more difficult to condemn the bombing of Dresden than to condemn Auschwitz. Perhaps to do so is also morally more important. But if my sense of national moral responsibility were to lead me to assert that there is no difference between Dresden and Auschwitz, then I would be doing no one any service. On the contrary, I would be attacking (albeit vainly) the basic principles of historical explanation and moral judgment, not to mention common sense. This is perhaps a danger which Professor Shahak does not entirely avoid.
posted by russilwvong at 12:18 PM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


As greatgefilte and others pointed out upthread Maimonides' juridical judgments didn't really apply even in his own day. He spent his whole life in Muslim-ruled countries, as a dhimmi under another monotheist "faith" run by people who didn't value non-Muslim lives as much as those of their own kind, while at the same time in Xian-ruled Europe Jews were being raped to death or burned at the stake for the imaginary crime of bleeding Xian babies. Enlightened and/or liberal values like "respect for diversity," "the community of humanity" and "freedoms of thought and speech for all" had to wait a few hundred years to be publicly formulated and another few hundred years to begin to be put into practice. (And as this thread shows their implementation remains imperfect.)

Speaking of which, whatever the shortcomings of the current Jewish State of Israel at least they don't insist on running everything by their religious law the way their "adversary" Iran does. E.g., I hear that in Tel Aviv you can tell people you're an atheist and not be arrested and tortured.

And by the way, yes I know Metafilter is not a government-funded site and the Mods may delete whatever they choose for any reason or none. That is not the point: it was not the Moderators we were arguing with, but ordinary lusers on our own lowly level who were clamoring for the "Rulers'" tolerance to be limited even further. Do try to keep up if you must argue on the Internet, especially if you mean to rescind years of real-world progress.

In closing, O Archons of the Mefites, may this useless thread be closed? I think we've all embarrassed ourselves enough here. Or must I threaten to boycott oxygen?
posted by davy at 12:30 PM on May 14, 2007


russilwvong : "But most people don't know this. So I think a fair number of people in this thread are getting the impression that Maimonides was advocating the death penalty for non-Jews in arbitrary circumstances, etc."

See, an ideal MetaTalk about this issue would have gone like this:

A: "Brian B compared one of the teachings to one of L. Ron Hubbard's"
B: "Yes, and in that both gave different rules for treating the in-group and the out-group, they're similar."
C: "True, but Maimonides wasn't advocating murder of the out-group, just decreased punishment for murdering the out-group."
D: "Not just that, but he wasn't advocating it at all, just trying to illuminate a possible reason for inconsistencies that would otherwise exist in certain books."
E: "Plus, of course, the historical context was entirely different. He was in a society which took the same approach, where in that society Islam was the in-group, and Judaism was the out-group."
F: "In fact, the problem with quoting Maimonides in this sort of situation is that the stuff written about him, by Shahak, was written by someone who, himself, was known to play loose and fast in order to advance his viewpoint. So referencing Shahak is referencing an unreliable (or, at least, contentious) source in the first place."
G: "Well, then, that issue solved, what about linking to hate-sites in general?"
H: "We've already discussed that in depth. Check out this MeTa [link1], or this one[link2], or this one[link3]."

See? The brunt of this could have been solved in 6 or so comments, and then we could just link back to any of the previous discussions where all the salient points about linking to hate-sites in general have already all been brought up and discussed in stunning depth. The MeTa could have been done completely in 7 comments.

That's the problem with MeTa'ing when one is seeing through a red mist of anger: it clouds ability to discuss or debunk something logically and succinctly.
posted by Bugbread at 12:59 PM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


I'm confused. Is this Mammarides guy ok with the fact that the Jews did WTC?
posted by dios at 1:12 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


just decreased punishment for murdering the out-group

... plus what I consider judicial murder of the outgroup when desired.

brian's off-hand comparison was between Scientology and OT Judiac totalitarianism as filtered through Maimonides, not Scientology vs.modern judaism per se.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 1:14 PM on May 14, 2007


But bugbread, what fun would THAT have been?
posted by davy at 1:15 PM on May 14, 2007


Jews nuthin', it was TROLLS did 9/11. Trolls.
posted by davy at 1:17 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Thirty one more to go, people. You can do it.
posted by boo_radley at 1:17 PM on May 14, 2007


brian's off-hand comparison was between Scientology and OT Judiac totalitarianism as filtered through Maimonides, not Scientology vs.modern judaism per se.

Yeah, but the problem was less his comparison than the way he was so weasly about defending it. He gave every impression of acting in very bad faith. I understand that you think about this differently, but his insistence that a hate site was not only an appropriate place to find his citation, but what I take (and I realize this is my value judgment) as his lie about not realizing the inflammatory nature of his choice, made his position considerably more controversial than the reasoned one being discussed here.
posted by OmieWise at 1:29 PM on May 14, 2007


"Mammarides" sound like a lot of fun and probably NSFW.
posted by Mister_A at 1:32 PM on May 14, 2007


We've had lots of quotes from books here
But now
I'd like to hear what god has to say about all of this
posted by Bighappyfunhouse at 1:35 PM on May 14, 2007


"I'm confused. Is this Mammarides guy ok with the fact that the Jews did WTC?"

What's all this about Marmalade?
posted by klangklangston at 1:38 PM on May 14, 2007


Voulez vous coucher avec moi ce soir, klang. Voulez vous coucher avec moi ce soir.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:40 PM on May 14, 2007


I'd like to take this opportunity to declare victory too.
posted by brownpau at 1:44 PM on May 14, 2007


hate site was not only an appropriate place to find his citation

I consider it irrelevant, too, other than it gave people an excuse to inflame themselves with passionate rage instead of engaging in reasoned argumentation. In that respect it was a gaffe.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 1:45 PM on May 14, 2007


mammaries?
posted by Stynxno at 1:45 PM on May 14, 2007


hey heywood, no one cares.
posted by Stynxno at 1:46 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Wow what a thread. FWIW I had never heard of this Maimonides fellow, and found this fairly enlightening - from both sides.
posted by Big_B at 1:50 PM on May 14, 2007


bugbread, you've summarized it nicely.
posted by russilwvong at 1:52 PM on May 14, 2007


I care.

I consider it irrelevant

That's strange to me because it's the basis of my objection. Perhaps he linked to the site in innocence (although as I've said, I doubt that), but I can understand why the site with the comment would raise some flags. Those could have been easily lowered had brianb made any concession as to what was at issue. Instead he parsed and parsed and parsed, and each time he did became more incoherent and more probably anti-semitic. Of course this is my reading. But in it, his link is central not because it indicates anything essential about him, but because his treatment of the concern it raised indicated that he didn't care.
posted by OmieWise at 1:54 PM on May 14, 2007


I passed out drunk last night. Did I miss anything?

(Reads thread.)

Actually, it goth both civil and silly toward the end. Amazing how often those go hand in hand.

Now excuse me while I use a terlet as a container for the contents of my stomach.
posted by Astro Zombie at 2:03 PM on May 14, 2007


Stynxno : "hey heywood, no one cares."

Yeah. If anyone cared, we'd have a 479 comment thread about the subject.

Heywood Mogroot : "I consider it irrelevant, too, other than it gave people an excuse to inflame themselves with passionate rage instead of engaging in reasoned argumentation. In that respect it was a gaffe."

It's just one of those "discussing multiple things within the same thread" things. There are several issues (did Maimonides say what Brian B said he did? Was Brian B implying more than he said on the surface? Is what Brian B is implying true? Is it anti-semitic? Are Brian B's sources good? Do they make his argument suspect? Is an argument made more incorrect when it references a primary source linked to from a biased site than when it references the same primary source linked to from a non-biased site?). Different people found different parts of the argument to be the important part.

From what I can tell, you and I were primarily interested in 1) Whether Maimonides really wrote that, and 2) Was it in context, or taken out of context? It took a long time for us to get answers, because other folks were more interested in the other issues. I've read enough threads that a new thread about whether linking hate sites is good or bad isn't an interesting topic. I'm not going to learn a lot from that discussion. I don't know anything at all about Maimonides, so that was a topic I was really interested in. A lot of folks here were more interested in whether or not Brian B was a crypto-anti-semite. Hence the discussion tilted that way.

In short, whether or not Brian B is anti-semitic, or which sources should be linked, etc., are not relevant to the stuff that I'm interested in, nor perhaps to the stuff you're interested in, but that's not to say they're irrelevant in general. Just to me.
posted by Bugbread at 2:06 PM on May 14, 2007


Slightly off-topic: if anyone wants to discuss tonight's BBC Panorama broadcast, the thread is still open.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 2:12 PM on May 14, 2007


470!
posted by davy at 2:16 PM on May 14, 2007


Or maybe not; maybe I should've hit Refresh again first. Eh, I ain't gonna count 'em all, I only got so many fingers.
posted by davy at 2:18 PM on May 14, 2007


I know, let's watch the film clip to see which one is "Brian B." and which is "motty."
posted by davy at 2:20 PM on May 14, 2007


OK, I get it. Jews.
posted by dgaicun at 2:27 PM on May 14, 2007


Seconding BP on the awesomeness of jamjam's comment. I knew following this would pay off... but not in such an unexpectedly mindblowing way.
posted by distant figures at 2:28 PM on May 14, 2007


Hey, I'm so glad you can see inside the secret parts of other folks' conscience and (sub-?) consciousness. Why not look into your own then and tell us why you won't admit that you're a pedophile? Speaking of Bad Faith, I mean.
posted by davy at 2:29 PM on May 14, 2007


Karaites? Lubavichers? Marxians and Stooges?
posted by davy at 2:30 PM on May 14, 2007


It's like davy's comments are transmitted over a bad satellite connection from the moon with a 10 second delay that everyone keeps talking over.
posted by Mid at 2:31 PM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


(The Marx Brothers and the Three Stooges were Jewish, y'know, as was Saul Bellow and Marc Chagall.)
posted by davy at 2:32 PM on May 14, 2007


Shut up, Mid. :-)
posted by davy at 2:32 PM on May 14, 2007


What Brian B did, whether he meant to or not, was to resort to a classic antisemitic rhetorical device, a device which, while not peculiar to antisemitism, has a very long and troubling history in the specific context of antisemitism. Religious texts, which in Judaism are always understood in relation to other religious texts, are highly susceptible to cherry-picking and, throughout history have been cherry picked to the nth degree for nefarious ends. I'm a pretty rational dude, and I think I can differentiate between the not-antisemitic Dawkinsian cherry-picking and its evil cousin.

Every time someone does this, I am faced with the following dilemma:
1. roll my eyes and let it be;
2. sit back and watch the shouting match, or;
3. take the considerable time to, without, god forbid, telling the person they've engaged in a classically antisemitic tactic, explain that yes, the Rambam was writing a Restatement of Jewish Law (The Mishne Torah), yes that is an attempt to reconcile various esoteric machlakot in the Talmud and yes, the principle articulated by the sentence you quoted suggests a separateness, an elitism and a tribal sentiment common to, well, common to all tribes. No, there haven't been any applications of these laws since the Sanhedrin was dissolved...and the anthropological reasons for this are legion, so yes, when the Rambam summarized this particular law, it had already been dead letter for hundreds of years. Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

That's not debate. There is no "other side." There's just some asshole who has no idea what he's talking about strongly insinuating that the great hero philosopher of medieval Judaism says it's ok to kill the goyim, and that this is some kind of important tenant of Jews and Judaism. When things like this happen, and not in the context of a debate about, say, the legal status of gentiles in Rabbinic law (which is a fascinating topic), or even about Judaism generally, but rather in a thread about Scientology, is it someone's job, every time to pretend like we're having a rational debate and clarify "misconceptions"? To step in and say, "Well, yes, but..."? No, it isn't. Which is why I prefer some formulation of "you're picking a fight and behaving like an asshole."

But then, when you don't debate the perpetrator on his own terms, the thing he said stands and because it is succinct and easy to understand, as opposed to the actual, complex explanation, takes hold.

I'm sympathetic to everyone's desire to learn what the Rambam said and to know if what Brian B said is true or whether it's a hateful lie. It's a really interesting topic and lord knows there are tens of thousands of pages written by and about the Rambam. But that's not what this thread is about at all. To say that it's no great shakes when someone says, completely out of the blue: "Oh yeah! Well the Jews think it's ok to murder non-Jews!" and then to insist on a rational rebuttal of that ludicrous proposition is maddening beyond belief.

It's a little late in the day for this, but I wrote it, so there you have it. And I don't mean, by the above, to cast aspersions on anyone here (apart from, perhaps Brian B through his behavior), just to respond to a bit of the "overreacting!" or "irrational!" comments above. It's a very emotional thing for a lot of us and to dismiss it as Jewish paranoia is a touch insulting.
posted by kosem at 2:37 PM on May 14, 2007 [48 favorites]


What's the Comment Count up to now?
posted by davy at 2:40 PM on May 14, 2007


Thank you kosem.
posted by motty at 2:41 PM on May 14, 2007


Is everyone waiting for someone else to post #499?
posted by greatgefilte at 2:47 PM on May 14, 2007


Not really.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:49 PM on May 14, 2007


Judaism says it's ok to kill the goyim

more like it was ok. There is a difference.

and that this is some kind of important tenet of Jews and Judaism

this is what people are reading into brian b's comment, but all he did was link Elron with the Maimonides guy.

brian b said nothing about current Judaic thought.

Elron said, it some circumstances, it is OK to kill out-groups in defense of their religion/culture. Maimonides, in the 12th century, apparently wrote similar things regarding the old laws.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 2:50 PM on May 14, 2007


Hey everybody, throughout human history most people in most places have thought and still think murdering people like them is worse than murdering some other kind; it's kinda like the ghettoes of Karachi didn't erupt when the Taliban blew the bejeezus out of statues of the Buddhas but let some Danish guy print a few cartoons about THEIR prophet and they all go apeshit. In perspective, whichever In Crowd you belong to, we all suck!
posted by davy at 2:52 PM on May 14, 2007


kosem: There's just some asshole who has no idea what he's talking about strongly insinuating that the great hero philosopher of medieval Judaism says it's ok to kill the goyim, and that this is some kind of important tenet of Jews and Judaism. When things like this happen, and not in the context of a debate about, say, the legal status of gentiles in Rabbinic law (which is a fascinating topic), or even about Judaism generally, but rather in a thread about Scientology, is it someone's job, every time, to pretend like we're having a rational debate and clarify "misconceptions"?

If it happens again, we can just link to your comment.

Heywood Mogroot: brian b said nothing about current Judaic thought.

Again: Brian B. was relying on Israel Shahak's highly colored description of Judaism. And Shahak does claim that this applies to modern Judaism.
posted by russilwvong at 2:59 PM on May 14, 2007


kosem's comment was the best of this thread.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 3:28 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


And Shahak does claim that this applies to modern Judaism.

So? brian b first loosely equalted Elron to the M guy's philosophy not modern Judaism. He later linked Shahak to explain who the M guy was.

And I wish to clarify 'the site was irrelevant' comment. It was irrelevant in the logical, rhetorical sense (assuming the text itself is accurate), but I see that in the real-world people may not want their IP addresses exposed to supposedly hostile sites and that's perfectly rational and proper.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 3:33 PM on May 14, 2007


And.... scene.

Thank you for stepping in, kosem.
posted by jokeefe at 3:43 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Q: Know why Jewish men wear yarmulkes?
A: Because the little propellers cost extra.
posted by dios at 3:44 PM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


Thank you, kosem. Not so much, heyroot.
posted by ~ at 3:47 PM on May 14, 2007


kosem : "But that's not what this thread is about at all. To say that it's no great shakes when someone says, completely out of the blue: 'Oh yeah! Well the Jews think it's ok to murder non-Jews!' and then to insist on a rational rebuttal of that ludicrous proposition is maddening beyond belief."

Well, keep in mind, if you're not really aware of the role of this whole Maimonides in general anti-semitic discussion, you wouldn't read "I had no idea that Hubbard was familiar with Maimonides" as "Oh yeah! Well the Jews think it's ok to murder non-Jews!", but just "Hubbard said the same thing that some other guy said". Like, if someone had said the same thing about Thomas Aquinas, I wouldn't assume they were on an anti-Catholic screed, but just comparing it to something Aquinas said.

But if you know the background, you'll know that it's a trigger word with lots of background. Like, if I say the phrase "the inaccuracies of carbon-dating", people in the know will realise I'm about to go off on a creation/evolution thing, but someone who isn't familiar with that whole debate will think I'm just...talking about some sort of inaccuracy in carbon-dating. To them, starting a MeTa thread about someone starting a creationism/evolutionism ruckus will seem really bizarre. Is it your responsibility to explain the whole creation/evolution thing to anyone who doesn't see the prima-facie evolution argument inherent in the phrase "the inaccuracies of carbon-dating"? No. But you should certainly avoid accusing anyone who is interested in that argument of being a crypto-evolutionist, as has happened in this thread, just because they're not versed in the controversy enough to recognize that it's a trope.
posted by Bugbread at 3:56 PM on May 14, 2007


What Brian B did, whether he meant to or not, was to resort to a classic antisemitic rhetorical device, a device which, while not peculiar to antisemitism, has a very long and troubling history in the specific context of antisemitism.

What you did is a very classic rhetorical device peculiar to Scientology, namely special pleading from a persecution complex that tries to get a free pass from legitimate criticism. You also resort to the false dilemma when you label an argument as unintentionally anti-, exposing only a pro- bias on your part, with the obvious third option being neutral or objective, which you imply does not exist if the material offends you.

Religious texts, which in Judaism are always understood in relation to other religious texts, are highly susceptible to cherry-picking and, throughout history have been cherry picked to the nth degree for nefarious ends. I'm a pretty rational dude, and I think I can differentiate between the not-antisemitic Dawkinsian cherry-picking and its evil cousin.

Not my problem. I don't need to study your paranoia to avoid it. The more people try to make the issue about the association with an archive, then more it becomes a strawman or avoidance technique. We're seeing a form of brainwashing in action too: Everyone deemed to be either for or against.
posted by Brian B. at 4:01 PM on May 14, 2007


salivating on forehead alert!
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 4:08 PM on May 14, 2007


Is it your responsibility to explain the whole creation/evolution thing to anyone who doesn't see the prima-facie evolution argument inherent in the phrase ‘the inaccuracies of carbon-dating’? No. But you should certainly avoid accusing anyone who is interested in that argument of being a crypto-evolutionist, as has happened in this thread, just because they're not versed in the controversy enough to recognize that it's a trope.

That's a very good point and your analogy to a creationism argument is illuminating. However, I don't think it's necessary for someone to be aware that Maimonides is often taken out-of-context to make common antisemitic arguments in order to recognize that the comparison was spurious—and so esoteric that it raises questions. When queried on it, Brian B. made the situation progressively worse, raising more and more questions about his motivations. At that point, it seems to me to be very blindered, willfully so, for anyone to dismiss the concerns about antisemtism and to defend Brian B.'s comment at face value.

Personally, I think that those here who have argued most strongly in his defense are probably being as knee-jerk reactionary as mott was, except from the other direction—they're sensitized to and angry about the smeer tactics used by some defenders of Israel who throw around the “antisemitism” charge. That's what this argument has been about for them. This is made explicit by some things Orthogonality has said, for example. This is all very unfortunate.

Not my problem. I don't need to study your paranoia to avoid it. The more people try to make the issue about the association with an archive, then more it becomes a strawman or avoidance technique. We're seeing a form of brainwashing in action too: Everyone deemed to be either for or against.

Brian B., you're just further demonstrating that, at the very least, you're a belligerent nutcase.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:20 PM on May 14, 2007


Partridge, I dare you to say something important for once. I believe in you. Give it a try, put that whining and stupid attempts at comedy behind you and let it fly.
posted by Brian B. at 4:21 PM on May 14, 2007


It may not be that Brian B is a troll, or an antisemite, but can anybody come to the end of this thread and make the case that he is a good member of this community who contributes meaningfully? Or that he even makes sense?

I try to figure out what he's saying, but it just sound like some weird version of the adults in Peanuts, except, instead of just "Wuh wuh wuh" noises, there are bits that sound like fragments of English sentences, and those fragments are just hostile and dismissive.

"Wuh wuh wuh strawman wuh wuh wuh never said that wuh wuh wuh I win wuh wuh wuh stop drolling on your forehead," does not make for good conversation, even if it is, at moments, inadvertently funny.
posted by Astro Zombie at 4:22 PM on May 14, 2007


I'm getting "invalid user ID" when I click on him now.

Of course, he'll just say this proves the zionist conspiracy.
posted by Mid at 4:24 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Sometimes I forget just how satisfying a nice bowl of soup can be. *Yum*
posted by facetious at 4:25 PM on May 14, 2007


Brian B., you're just further demonstrating that, at the very least, you're a belligerent nutcase.

Ethereal, I will never kiss your ass, give up. You begged and begged for it, but I don't care. So say what you must to feel better.
posted by Brian B. at 4:25 PM on May 14, 2007


Nevermind, it's back.
posted by Mid at 4:25 PM on May 14, 2007


Man, there are a lot of comments in this here thread. I did not read all of them. You think there will be a quiz?
posted by goatdog at 4:29 PM on May 14, 2007


Partridge, I dare you to say something important for once. I believe in you. Give it a try, put that whining and stupid attempts at comedy behind you and let it fly.

I'll do it if you do it first.
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 4:31 PM on May 14, 2007


Wow. Nice work to a lot of the morning shift on this thread - some comments up there that are much better than this thread deserved.

And really, maybe mefi could have a kids' table?
We could have a whole menu: fish sticks, tater tots, stuff like that. The tablecloth would be plastic so it would be easy to wipe up the mess.
posted by LobsterMitten at 4:34 PM on May 14, 2007


I'll do it if you do it first.

Admitting that you have never done it is the first step, of course.
posted by Brian B. at 4:34 PM on May 14, 2007


(Cues Les Brown) Thanks for the Maimonides . . . .
posted by landis at 4:40 PM on May 14, 2007


Now that is sounding more like a real, decent, unmistakable flame-out, especially the insinuations that criticism is a plea for a rimjob (interesting connection you make there), and that detailed discourse on controversial religious texts amounts to a paranoid Holocaust-driven persecution complex. We are making progress.
posted by brownpau at 4:41 PM on May 14, 2007


Certifiable.
posted by OmieWise at 4:43 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


bp!
posted by dios at 4:48 PM on May 14, 2007


Hooray, Brian B.'s flameout is back on!
posted by Krrrlson at 4:48 PM on May 14, 2007


Posts_Until_Integer_Overflow -= 1
posted by nilihm at 4:50 PM on May 14, 2007


OmieWise writes "I'm sympathetic to your point that Judaism too needs to be criticized, but I haven't really seen people arguing otherwise in this thread."

Thanks, OmieWise, but with respect, that wasn't my point. As I wrote above, I almost jumped on Brian B. for making a gratuitously anti-Jewish slur, until some little ping of memory made me think, wait, maybe Maimonides did say something like that.

My point is not that Judaism needs to be criticized, but that not every criticism or historical reference that doesn't paint Judiasm in a glowing light is necessarily anti-Semitism.

As someone noted up-thread, an allegation of anti-Semitic bigotry is about the worst, most serious charge one can bring in modern Western society. It's therefore not something to be bandied about lightly, at first glance, or without engaging in the due diligence of dialog first. Calling someone an anti-Semite is the nuclear strike of libel.

As Ethereal Bligh judiociusly opined. "If Brian B. is a budding antisemite, then let him flower and then ban him."

And that's exactly what motty didn't do: in his zeal to take offense, or be a victim, or count coup, or whatever his motivation was, he went nuclear at a the first faint hint. Like a champion witch-sniffer, motty apparently thinks he can look into his computer monitor and read what's written in the secret hearts of anyone posting here.

And that's just a bit much for me.
posted by orthogonality at 5:01 PM on May 14, 2007


Admitting that you have never done it is the first step, of course.

no it's not - a dare's a dare. You can't make up stupid rules after the fact. Come on Brian, I dare you, I double dare you motherfucker. Say something important coherent!
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 5:04 PM on May 14, 2007


Partridge, I wouldn't be in this thread if it was about you. Did you understand that one?
posted by Brian B. at 5:09 PM on May 14, 2007


Is it a problem that I'm listening to Wagner while reading this thread?
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 5:10 PM on May 14, 2007


Jews!
posted by dgaicun at 5:10 PM on May 14, 2007


I have no dog in this fight but, if I did, he would be a cat.
posted by y2karl at 5:11 PM on May 14, 2007


BEST THREAD EVER.
posted by nevercalm at 5:13 PM on May 14, 2007


I will never kiss your ass, give up. You begged and begged for it, but I don't care.

Are you the drunk chick I hooked up with Saturday night?
posted by Cyrano at 5:16 PM on May 14, 2007


Partridge, I wouldn't be in this thread if it was about you. Did you understand that one?

No, not really. That said, if it counts for anything, I wouldn't be in this thread if it wasn't about you - you're a bottomless pit of rollercoaster entertainment. What did jonmc say - better than a topless rodeo!

(sorry about calling you a motherfucker though - I just did it for the quote)
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 5:22 PM on May 14, 2007


As greatgefilte and others pointed out upthread Maimonides' juridical judgments didn't really apply even in his own day. He spent his whole life in Muslim-ruled countries, as a dhimmi under another monotheist "faith" run by people who didn't value non-Muslim lives as much as those of their own kind, while at the same time in Xian-ruled Europe Jews were being raped to death or burned at the stake for the imaginary crime of bleeding Xian babies. Enlightened and/or liberal values like "respect for diversity," "the community of humanity" and "freedoms of thought and speech for all" had to wait a few hundred years to be publicly formulated and another few hundred years to begin to be put into practice.

This is an important point that occurred to me as I was reading this misbegotten clusterfuck of a thread, and I'm glad it was so clearly stated.

In other news, if I had to bet, I'd bet Brian B. is a troll rather than an anti-Semite. Genuine ideologues tend to get upset and provide us with much-needed flameouts; Brian B. just tosses in the occasional calm insult or taunt. And if we're not going to have a flameout, I'm not sure what we're doing here, because all the substantive issues have been cleared up and frankly the air is getting a little funky.

Also, I don't want this thread cluttering up my Recent Comments page for weeks. So everybody go home and get some sleep, and let's do this again next month!
posted by languagehat at 5:26 PM on May 14, 2007


I have no dog in this fight but, if I did, he would be a cat.

This cat?
posted by dgaicun at 5:27 PM on May 14, 2007


My point is not that Judaism needs to be criticized, but that not every criticism or historical reference that doesn't paint Judiasm in a glowing light is necessarily anti-Semitism.

Yeah, sorry orthogonality, that's what I meant. I was using shorthand and abbreviating your point. I should have been more careful.
posted by OmieWise at 5:28 PM on May 14, 2007


In other news, if I had to bet, I'd bet Brian B. is a troll rather than an anti-Semite.

If you don't know someone is a troll, then the label is pointless. If you don't know someone is an anti-semite, then the label is pointless. Talk about being led by the nose into a false dilemma.
posted by Brian B. at 5:33 PM on May 14, 2007


the inaccuracies of carbon-dating

I, personally, only date carbon-based life forms and I find the entire process unpleasingingly inaccurate most of the time. Frankly, I blame science.

But, just to have posted in a legendary thread, 'An eye for an eye' seems pretty boodthirsty in this day and age, but at the time it was better than 'kill them, their families and their pets and their pets' families". Civilisation creeps up on us in fits and starts, so perhaps this particular piece of cultural legislation is similar.

Scientologists, OTOH, as western based and invented in the 20th century, have no such excuse. And that, dear reader, is why the batshitinsane tag was invented.
posted by Sparx at 5:45 PM on May 14, 2007


motty writes "However, Orthoganality's text is carefully constructed to make you think he did. You're damn right I'm smelling an antisemitic rat."

motty, you're way to keen, way too zelously seeking to find a witch to burn.


motty writes "The key nasty phrase here is 'smear them with Maimonides's brush', and the unstated implication alluded to passim is that Maimonides believed it was no sin to kill a non-Jew. "

No, I never said that. I said, I quoted Dawkins as saying, that Maimonides meant the Commandmemntalso a sin (but not a breaking of the Commandment) simply isn't answered in Dawkins's exegesis.

But rather than agreeing to disagree, or noting that we have a legitmate difference of opinion, or even saying that my (or Dawkins's) understanding of Maimonides is lacking or wrong but not malicious, you immediately go full bore: you "smell a rat", and therefore I must be an anti-Semite.

Is everyone who disagrees with you on Judaism an anti-Semite, motty? Is Noam Chomsky an anti-Semite in your book, motty? Are anti-Zionist Jews anti-Semites in your book?

Because the charge of anti-Semitism is far too serious -- the effect of real anti-Semtism far too evil -- for you to use it as a bludgeon to win arguments. You do no honor to the many real vistoms of anti-Semitism to weild that phrase so broadly and so aimlessly,


motty also splutters that my "previous post to that includes another bit of trollische sleight of hand, where he conflates the instructions given for a specific historical war in the Book of Joshua with normative Jewish law and leaves the lay reader with the impression that the wanton and willy nilly murder of non-Jews is not only permitted by Maimonides but has biblical precedent. Neither point is actually the case, but that is not the impression the reader might be left with."

I really didn't want to bring this up, because it will cause hurt feelings, but Dawkins also quotes a poll of modern-day Israeli children. The kids, eight to fourteen, are asked "Do you think Joshua and the Israelites acted rightly or not?'

66 percent of the over 1000 Jewish Israeli kids answered that they totally approved of Joshua's genocide. Dawkins includes a small sample of these kids' reasons:
In my opinion Joshua was right when he did it, one reason being that God commanded him to exterminate the people so the tribes of Israel will not be able to assimilate amongst them and learn their bad ways.
Another child:
Joshua did good necause the people who inhabited the land were of a different religion, and when Joshua killed them he wiped their religion from the earth.
Of the 26 percent of the kids who disapproved of what Joshua did, one explained:
I think it is bad, since the Arabs are impure and if one enters an impure land one will also become impure and share their curse.
Another kid disapproved, not the killing of the people but the waste of livestock:
I think Joshua did not act well, as they could have spared the animals for themselves.

(This, incidentally, is to me the true horror of the Palestinian-Isreali conflict: the children on both sides, whether the ones wearing bombs or the ones speaking approvingly of genocide, who cannot see even their age-cohorts on the other side as fully human. That's the true and lasting curse on both houses, and damn the parents of both sides who have not only let this happen but have encouraged the poisoning of their own children's morality for the sake of ancient lies and stubborn pride. Dulce et decorum est, pro Deus mori.)


Perhaps I "[conflate] the instructions given for a specific historical war in the Book of Joshua with normative Jewish law", but apparently the lierall choildren of Israel conflate the "specific historical war" with the ongoing Arab-Isreali conflict. If tehy don;t see it as "normative law" they certainly don;t see it as remote from their own contemporary circumstances.

Now I don't bring that up to say that all Jews are anything, but to explain what I meant, what you call anti-semetism, when you
wrote "The phrase I was calling trollery - which I stand by - was Do I think most modern Jews believe that it's no sin to kill a Gentile? No, no I do not. And I would oppose any attempt to smear them with Maimonides's brush."

I don't think most modern Jews believe it's not a sin to kill non-Jews. But no, I did not categorically say absolutely no Jew could possibly believe that. Because those Israeli kids in the poll do give me pause. And I do suspect that some Jews, the Mier Kahanes and the Kach Party and the Baruch Goldsteins have few or no qualms about killing non-Jews.

Can I say that, without being automatically tarred as an anti-Semite by you, motty?
posted by orthogonality at 5:52 PM on May 14, 2007 [6 favorites]


Like a champion witch-sniffer, motty apparently thinks he can look into his computer monitor and read what's written in the secret hearts of anyone posting here.

Looks like you're still trying to pick a fight, Orthogonality. Won't work.

Meanwhile my apologies to everyone for instigating what has been widely described in various ways as the worst of everything bad about things that aren't great sometimes here and such, and thanks for all the answers to my initial question about how to deal with red mist inducing antisemitism on MeFi, perceived or otherwise, and also for making it clear to me how expressions of such red mist will be perceived here by some, justified or otherwise. Thanks especially to Kosem who, for me, nailed it.
posted by motty at 5:57 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


What you did is a very classic rhetorical device peculiar to Scientology, namely special pleading from a persecution complex that tries to get a free pass from legitimate criticism. You also resort to the false dilemma when you label an argument as unintentionally anti-, exposing only a pro- bias on your part, with the obvious third option being neutral or objective, which you imply does not exist if the material offends you.

Oh my god. So to speak.

Make it stop.

Can I say that, without being automatically tarred as an anti-Semite by you, motty?

I'll do it for you. *grabs bucket of tar, pitchfork, etcetera*

Not helpful or useful, I know. This thread has devoured enough of my time... and yet I can't look away.
posted by jokeefe at 6:00 PM on May 14, 2007


Brian B. wrote: ... troll ... anti-semite ... false dilemma.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 6:07 PM on May 14, 2007


bugbread writes "But if you know the background, you'll know that it's a trigger word with lots of background. Like, if I say the phrase 'the inaccuracies of carbon-dating', people in the know will realise I'm about to go off on a creation/evolution thing, but someone who isn't familiar with that whole debate will think I'm just...talking about some sort of inaccuracy in carbon-dating."

Good point, and well-taken, bugbread.
posted by orthogonality at 6:14 PM on May 14, 2007


I have no dog in this fight but, if I did, he would be a cat.

This cat?


no, dgaicun, this cat.
posted by Rock Steady at 6:16 PM on May 14, 2007


"Elron said, it some circumstances, it is OK to kill out-groups in defense of their religion/culture. Maimonides, in the 12th century, apparently wrote similar things regarding the old laws."

How is it that I, a gentile with little versing in Orthodox theology, am able to understand the difference in context and you are not? I mean, we've been reading the same thread, right?

And to the other folks, and Christ, can you believe it's me saying this, but by imputing bad motives to people you feel are your opponents in this debate, you're only making this argument more toxic and making yourselves look more like jackasses.

Look, Motty was rightly concerned about echoes of anti-Semitism, and anyone not willing to concede Brian B. as an incoherent jackass should reconsider how strongly their ideology binds their critical thinking. That said, he over-reacted, and NOTHING WILL COME OF THIS. I mean, how intractable does a flamewar have to be before I call it futile and stupid?

The fundamental conversational principal of good will is lacking here, to a degree that will make any real progress impossible.
posted by klangklangston at 6:18 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Last blipping night motty said: "I am personally a bit sensitive to antisemitism is not just the fact that I am myself Jewish but that actual members of my own family were murdered for being Jewish within living memory."


In response to
kosem's motty-reinforcing rehash, Brian B. said: "What you did is a very classic rhetorical device peculiar to Scientology, namely special pleading from a persecution complex that tries to get a free pass from legitimate criticism."

How many easy rhetorical victories are you fanatical "philo-semites" going to give away? Y'all drag in the Jewish Holocaust of 1941-45 as if in all the history of Homo Sapiens nobody ever did anything remotely similar to any other group, then use that alleged superiority of persecution to "prove" that nobody has any right to criticise anything about that one small religio-ethnic group or disagree with your particular agenda in any way for any reason or else s/he's an EVIL ANTI-SEMITE "TROLL." And do y'all "philo-semites" reciprocate towards, oh, the shvartzes African-Americans, Muslim Israelis or Brazilian Hindus? Nah, you don't have to as the group you claim to speak for had its very own Shoah, so you're somehow uniquely entitled to frame all the moral "dialog" in your own favor -- and to hell with anybody else.

And I don't even think most of you motty-types are Jewish in any meaningful way (you needed someone you refer to as a "crypto-antisemite" to tell you who Rambam was?), let alone that "The Jews" held a universal conclave to elect YOU as Internet Spokesmodels. There are books on the subject of people like you, such as The Holocaust Industry by Norman G. Finkelstein.

Besides, at 12:59 PST Bugbread summed it all up; except for Special Pleading (and people getting pissed off about the same) there was no real reason to keep typing in this thread (except maybe to reach that magical 500-comment mark, which could've been done with chowder recipes).

Anyhow. Brian, ortho, let's just give it up. There's no point in talking to these people about this or indeed about anything at all. I can see it coming: sooner or later somebody'll say they prefer Rhode Island clam chowder to the Manhattan kind, which some cretin is going to take as a "crypto-antisemitic" reference about "Driving the Jews into the sea!" And when you go "Huh? WTF are you talking about?" that "denial" will just be taken as further "proof" of you Evil Nazi Nature.

And on preview, motty is BACK at it AGAIN. (Anti-Semite noun: anybody motty doesn't like.) Maybe we should make motty happy and take a hint from the 19th century Methodist Church and split into Metafilter (Jews) and Metafilter (Gentiles). Then hell, why not, how's www.metafilter-African-Norwegian-Buddhist.com sound?
posted by davy at 6:18 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Oh, davy...
posted by klangklangston at 6:20 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Whoah.
posted by psmith at 6:25 PM on May 14, 2007


Flameout by proxy?
posted by dgaicun at 6:31 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Oh, thank goodness. I was super-worried we might get to the end of the thread without anybody exploding.

(of course, now I have vitriol all over the front of my shirt)
posted by Sparx at 6:46 PM on May 14, 2007


Matt's still on his rocking chair on the porch, he hasn't even bothered to get up and go to the shed for his banhammer, his wifes coming out with a glass of homemade lemonade for him ....ah, now he's reading the paper.....some contented rocking going on there..........
posted by sgt.serenity at 6:55 PM on May 14, 2007


Holy shit. Philo-Semites? Special pleading? The Holocaust Industry? People like you?
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:58 PM on May 14, 2007


Damn, davy. Go outside for a few and collect your thoughts. You're coming off poorly here.
posted by boo_radley at 7:02 PM on May 14, 2007


All rise. In hac habitasse platea dictumst. Vestibulum non pede. Proin pede. Donec metus. Sed et purus. Quisque pede sem varius vel, ultricies sit amet, adipiscing in libero. Vestibulum ante ipsum primis in faucibus orci luctus et ultrices posuere cubilia Curae; Nulla pretium. Etiam lobortis dignissim sem. Phasellus pellentesque felis imperdiet turpis. Pellentesque tempor consequat lectus.
posted by Floydd at 7:03 PM on May 14, 2007


" Because right now I am breathing very slowly and deeply and still seeing everything through an extremely red mist and I would appreciate some suggestions."
posted by motty

Something from here or here might help. But this gave an old flame a stiff neck, this made my Dad's arms fly up over his head without his knowledge, and this is great if you want to gain 600 pounds and lose a leg to diabetes; I took this for about 18 months without major consequences (though I took this to stave off side-effects, and these days I have a low-dose PRN of this for for when individuals like you motty make ME "see through a red mist."

And now I'm eating cream of potato soup with a can of oysters emptied in it. It tastes better than it sounds. It turned out I was hungry after all: I finally came up with what I should have posted to motty last night (see previous paragraph).
posted by davy at 7:08 PM on May 14, 2007


Some words must be going out of style: Dogpile returned only 69 results.
posted by davy at 7:20 PM on May 14, 2007


Total length of Leviticus, King James Version: 25,789 words

Total length of this thread: 42,744 words and counting...
posted by gwint at 7:20 PM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


no, dgaicun, this cat.

Nope, wrong again. This cat.
posted by puke & cry at 7:21 PM on May 14, 2007


davy is actually a self-hating jew.
posted by Firas at 7:23 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Total length of this thread: 42,744 words and counting...

And still no Youtube link to a Maimonides version of 'Malkovich enters the portal'? I'm shocked.
posted by greatgefilte at 7:36 PM on May 14, 2007


Only 103 more comments until it can be proven once and for all, depending on whose comment nabs 666GET, whether or not Jews are The Devil.
posted by CKmtl at 7:36 PM on May 14, 2007


Matt's still on his rocking chair on the porch, he hasn't even bothered to get up and go to the shed for his banhammer, his wifes coming out with a glass of homemade lemonade for him ....ah, now he's reading the paper.....some contented rocking going on there..........

He smiles contentedly at his daughter playing on the backyard swingset and plans out dinner... pine nuts in the salad tonight? What to have for dessert? While far away the muted roar of monkeys poking each other with sticks is scarcely heard... what is that? Is it the Banhammer Beacon? Up in the sky, right over there? And Matt raises the paper up past his eyebrows and returns to his contemplations... beer or wine? If wine, the white or the red? Yes, it's a busy day at Casa Matt...
posted by jokeefe at 7:51 PM on May 14, 2007


While I'm not defending anyone, I think making the argument that Maimonides and whoever said things eight hundred years ago, and that they have no bearing whatsoever on the modern views of whatever religions is rather silly. Aside from Scientology and some of the newer religions, the sacred texts of The Big Three are at least that old, and the commentary and insight of the famous scholars/theologians with regards to those books continues to inform the attitudes of the modern followers.

In other words, saying that Maimonides was eight hundred years ago and modern Judaism would of course have no attitudes shaped by him would be a bit like trying to convince me that Thomas Aquinas might never have existed because his influence on Christianity has utterly evaporated - I'd have to laugh at you.

I don't care who you use it against, I hate a dishonest argument. Now, back to the epithet-chucking.
posted by adipocere at 8:20 PM on May 14, 2007


"Only 103 more comments until it can be proven once and for all, depending on whose comment nabs 666GET, whether or not Jews are The Devil."

Jews? Jews? No no no, I am the Devil. Me, the self-hating Santaist Satanist.
posted by davy at 8:22 PM on May 14, 2007


What would Brian B. do?
posted by ericb at 8:23 PM on May 14, 2007


"Now, back to the epithet-chucking."

Yes yes yes, I agree with you of course, but screw that "chucking" business for now: I, The Devil, want some good recipes using cans of sardines, vienna sausages and oysters.
posted by davy at 8:25 PM on May 14, 2007


Man was I cranky last night.

If I were you, Davy, I'd be putting the viennas away, and knocking up a tomato based pasta sauce to put the fish in, served with pasta. But I lack imagination that way. On the other hand - wait - do you have anchovies there?
posted by motty at 8:34 PM on May 14, 2007


recipes using cans of sardines, vienna sausages and oysters.

A recipe for what, tapeworms?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 8:35 PM on May 14, 2007


Damn! I thought this was a stupid thread at 400+ comments, but Damn.

Is it too soon to blame the Jews?
posted by Balisong at 8:38 PM on May 14, 2007


I think that I will never see
A tapeworm lovely as davy.
posted by cgc373 at 8:40 PM on May 14, 2007


Oyster + sausage is a winning combination. You could turn them into a stew (but don't overcook the oysters).

Melting anchovies into a tomato sauce is also yummy. I might have to do that this week. Thanks for putting it in my head, motty.
posted by psmith at 8:50 PM on May 14, 2007


Kosher Oysters?
posted by Balisong at 8:56 PM on May 14, 2007


"Kosher Oysters?"

Just in case you're not kidding...
posted by davy at 9:01 PM on May 14, 2007


Mike Godwin's brother Clyde once said that as an online discussion goes on, the probability of a recipe exchange approaches one.
posted by L. Fitzgerald Sjoberg at 9:02 PM on May 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


Kosher Pork Rinds, sprinkled with Kosher Salt.
posted by Balisong at 9:07 PM on May 14, 2007


Halall-o-rific.
posted by Balisong at 9:10 PM on May 14, 2007


Why do I get the feeling that davy hasn't slept since this thread started? He now has 53 comments here. I dropped out of this thread a while ago because I was starting to feel bad for making fun of the mentally unstable, but shit, time to get back on the meds or something.
posted by puke & cry at 9:16 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


I'm sorry, p&c, but all insulting comments must now be delivered in the form of a delicious, low calorie recipe.
posted by dgaicun at 9:40 PM on May 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


And don't mix your fibers.
Leafy greens over here, and bran over there.
posted by Balisong at 9:42 PM on May 14, 2007


Alright, everyone, who wants ice cream?

Aside from me, because I do ... but I'm lactose intolerant.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 10:53 PM on May 14, 2007


Moules Marinieres? Remember to throws the dead ones out first.
posted by casarkos at 11:00 PM on May 14, 2007


I did sleep from around dawn till around 2 PM our (Eastern Daylight) time. I'm just getting good at this!

My dog is getting upset because I've been keeping my latkes to myself. From ages 7 to 20 we lived in a mostly Jewish neighborhood and while I'd have trouble keeping kosher by myself I could live forever on Jewish cuisine and adapt easily enough to a kosher-keeping household. So I still don't understand why, when I was hospitalized overnight a couple years ago because of what looked like a systemic infection (my immune system is slightly iffy because they had to remove my spleen because of a childhood car wreck), they served me the usual breakfast for that day, which included bacon— in Jewish Hospital. (That's its name.) I can understand not defaulting to kosher for everybody given that most patients will be gentiles 'cuz Louisville's Jewish community is small (and mostly non-Orthodox and/or non-observant too), but Bacon? at Jewish?

I'll have an ice cream sandwich since TGBM inserted the thought in my head. I blame the Internet for my chubbiness!
posted by davy at 11:45 PM on May 14, 2007


"a delicious, low calorie recipe"

Oh. NOW ya tell me.
posted by davy at 11:47 PM on May 14, 2007


Will latkes do? You can skip the sour cream, I used ketchup.
posted by davy at 11:48 PM on May 14, 2007


well, ok ... after all these comments i've finally learned something interesting and significant

they serve bacon for breakfast in jewish hospital

this would be so perfect for zippy the pinhead, wouldn't it?
posted by pyramid termite at 12:39 AM on May 15, 2007


Okay, so 600 is no problem, but we'll never reach the 700 club.
posted by cgc373 at 2:31 AM on May 15, 2007


I fear you may be right cgc373. This one does appear to be running out of steam.
posted by MrMustard at 4:15 AM on May 15, 2007


Your antisteamitic attitude is noted, MrMustard. You're just a mean old man.
posted by cgc373 at 4:54 AM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


holy cow.

(Just thought I'd throw a little Hindi-tude into the mix...)
posted by From Bklyn at 5:40 AM on May 15, 2007


You know, TGBM is an anagram fro TMBG. That wasn't going to fly under the radar, mister.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:30 AM on May 15, 2007


And 'fro' is an anagram for 'for'.
posted by MrMustard at 6:57 AM on May 15, 2007


(NOT ANTIDYSLEXIC)
posted by MrMustard at 6:58 AM on May 15, 2007


Dude, everybody knows that "fro" is an acronym for "formal reordering of". From the latin fuckte rightus offum.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:46 AM on May 15, 2007


Are we just chatting now? Good. Because I just had a thought I have to put down somewhere.

Ok, Romeo & Juliet, yeah? It sucks as a love story. Think about it. It's easy to kill yourself in someone's name if you've just known them a couple weeks max, are rich enough to have nothing else to do with your life, and have no character issues to transcend to make it work. Specifically, there is no real challenge they actually overcame; they acted out of base reflex, got loads of other people into trouble, and ended up with nothing to show for it either. True love stories are where you stick together not despite just fate, but despite the demons within.

m i rite or whut?
posted by Firas at 8:19 AM on May 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


I think what you're looking for is the idea of courtly love. It's a perfect story in that genre.
posted by OmieWise at 8:40 AM on May 15, 2007


I think that's a common reading of Romeo and Juliet, Firas. I've heard it a few times before in any case. R&J are just two dumb star-crossed kids who got swept up in angsty youthful melodrama -- their love is not to be admired. I've no idea how much textual support there is for this reading, how popular it is in critical circles, or if it's at all feasible to think that Shakespeare himself was slyly critical of R&J's romance. But it's certainly the interpretation I prefer.
posted by painquale at 9:20 AM on May 15, 2007


I'm starting to wonder why no one has done a note-perfect episodic video-epistolatory retelling of R&J on Youtube. That would be fantastic, if handled correctly.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:27 AM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


This thread, at 44,000 words or so, is approximately 1/12 the length of War and Peace.
posted by Bugbread at 10:01 AM on May 15, 2007


Mainomides said: On three things does the world rest; One the indiscriminate killing of Gentiles; on the accumulation of money; and on the accusation of antisemitism.

Rabbi Shlomo Yitzhaki disagreed with the Rambam, saying it was not necessary to accuse Gentiles of antisemitism if you are already planning to kill them.

But Rabbi Elijah of Dusseldorf disagreed with both, saying the only thing important in the world is the shooting of rock-throwing children. From that, all murders of Gentiles, all accusations of antisemitism, and all accumulation of diamonds follow.

For this, Rabbi Elijah was kicked out of the Sanhedren.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:12 AM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Actually AZ, back in 1994 I was not booted off IRC channel #israel for saying that children lining up for a chance to throw rocks at your soldiers even if it means getting shot shows your society is really fucking up. I'd had no idea Peace Now was so strong at Technion.
posted by davy at 10:38 AM on May 15, 2007


(So what's the comment count now? Am I the Devil yet?)
posted by davy at 10:39 AM on May 15, 2007


An admin who kills this thread is guilty only of a sin against the laws of Heaven, not punishable by a court.
posted by amro at 10:46 AM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


"Courtly love," huh? It would seem that Courtney Love was aptly named.
posted by LordSludge at 10:59 AM on May 15, 2007


To get to 613 then stop would be kind of cute.
posted by motty at 11:13 AM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Cute? It'd be a mitzvah.
posted by OmieWise at 11:27 AM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


I was exorcised when I was 2 years old. (seriously) So if I get to make the 666th post, it would be like... a homecoming. but different
posted by LordSludge at 11:29 AM on May 15, 2007


Wow. We're all still here, huh?
posted by Kwine at 11:48 AM on May 15, 2007


Yeah. Momentum. It feels like only yesterday that I was serendipitously snagging 500.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:51 AM on May 15, 2007


Bakesh shalom v'radfehu.
posted by kosem at 11:56 AM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


So; who won?
posted by jouke at 11:56 AM on May 15, 2007


The Methodists, I think. We're still tallying.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:05 PM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Not worth reading.
posted by waxbanks at 12:05 PM on May 15, 2007


We, the viewing public.
posted by cog_nate at 12:09 PM on May 15, 2007


So is grey the new blue?
posted by jourman2 at 12:15 PM on May 15, 2007


The Circumcellions. They have Israelites, and they're not afraid to use them.
posted by languagehat at 12:36 PM on May 15, 2007


[NOT DONATIST]
posted by languagehat at 12:36 PM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


What do you have against DONATS, languagehat? Do you hate cops? Is it a race thing? Why won't you let us dunk in war AND in peace, whatever our wordcount?
posted by cgc373 at 1:03 PM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


[DONATIST]
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:20 PM on May 15, 2007


Was Maimonides donatist or not? Quotes please.
posted by jouke at 1:24 PM on May 15, 2007


One thing we haven't addressed is that the Donatist resistance to Roman occupation was a model for some of the SCLC civil rights movements, since they were the very first Protestants and were probably black.
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:25 PM on May 15, 2007


It's up to My Comments to push us to 700, now. We fall off the front page of MetaTalk in mere moments, as somebody double posts about Falwell's death or a mid-Atlantic meetup or whatever. Do not relent, people! Seven and hundred are both, uh, magic numbers, and everybody needs magic sometimes.
posted by cgc373 at 1:36 PM on May 15, 2007


Augustine once stole my fruit. I'm pretty sure he felt bad about it some time afterwards.
posted by psmith at 1:40 PM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


So, should men be more sensitive to the unspoken underlying emotional needs of their girlfriends or should women be more direct and rational.
And people, I want consensus here!
posted by jouke at 1:49 PM on May 15, 2007



About Falwell - though even the word 'meta' no doubt never graced the tips of his tongue and palate he was, still, a devout anti-semite.
posted by From Bklyn at 1:52 PM on May 15, 2007


From Bklyn, does the phrasing "tips of his tongue" imply a Falwellian lingual fork, or is it just me?
posted by cgc373 at 2:06 PM on May 15, 2007


So, should men be more sensitive to the unspoken underlying emotional needs of their girlfriends or should women be more direct and rational.

Yes.
posted by dersins at 2:07 PM on May 15, 2007


Leonardo was the best playable character in the original TMNT arcade game. Combination of good reach with low attack recovery time made him the standout character. Michaelangelo and Raphael were a too-close-to-call tie for second best.

[NOT DONATELLOIST]
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:54 PM on May 15, 2007


Man, cortex, that's pretty close to the dumbest thing I've ever seen you post (and you picked an appropriate thread). Michelangelo and Raphael were for shit unless the enemy was at eye level directly in front of you. A touch high? A touch low? A touch far away? Forget about it and hope for a pizza after you miss and get smashed. I'd accept Leonardo as the best all-round, because it's close between him and Donatello, but the thing to keep in mind is Donatello's absurdly good reach. If you properly aimed your blows, the slow recovery time didn't matter.
posted by Kwine at 3:26 PM on May 15, 2007


We can make 700! I believe!! Help us, Lord, in our endeavor!

*raises hands to Heaven, lowers eyes to check out ladies in front row*
posted by languagehat at 3:27 PM on May 15, 2007


[DON'T-TELLIST]
posted by languagehat at 3:27 PM on May 15, 2007


A touch high? A touch low? A touch far away? Forget about it and hope for a pizza after you miss and get smashed.

God, this is the classic argument toward a weak and helpless Goodness defined solely as a sympathetic reaction to the characterized Evil of merit. Go read some Nietzche for comprehension and get back to me when you decide to pick up some nunchuck skills, twink.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:30 PM on May 15, 2007


I heard Nietzche said that it was ok to murder non-existentialists.
posted by Kwine at 3:36 PM on May 15, 2007


There's no way I am reading all the way down to here and not saying something.

"something"
posted by dg at 3:39 PM on May 15, 2007


But back on topic, I mean, look, if there was a ninja turtle with a gun, there wouldn't be any debate about who was the best, right? Why? Cause you don't have to be standing right next to Bebop or whoever to hurt him. What's the next best thing to a gun for reach? A big stick that you can hold at one end and somehow thrust with enough force to do serious damage with the tip like nine feet away from you. Surely nunchucks and sai (sp?) are more aesthetically pleasing, but there's no room for art since 9/11 unless you want the terrorists to win. Is that what you want, brain boy? Victorious terrorists?
posted by Kwine at 3:41 PM on May 15, 2007


Idiot! When you've extended your god's bedamned bo staff to the full of it's prescious reach to tickle Bebop's nose, what, then, will you present to the flanking Rocksteady? You have nothing! You are lost! No savvy ninja turtle, no turtle of action, would be so foolish as the bookish Donatello to invest his livelihood in unilateral thrusts with a bloody stick!

This isn't a Bruce Lee movie. This is the big leagues. This is TMN motherfucking T, and things don't come waltzing up in single file to invite their foreheads to your log party. Get real.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:49 PM on May 15, 2007


I go to my supermarket and laugh at the cakes.
posted by Dizzy at 3:53 PM on May 15, 2007


Cake is for suckers.

Brownies are the new cake.

FYI.
posted by dersins at 4:07 PM on May 15, 2007


dersins---
Don't make me come up there.
posted by Dizzy at 4:09 PM on May 15, 2007


You've fallen into the trap, apprentice administrator, though the humor of the "invite their foreheads to your log party" line indicates that you might not be a total waste of my time. Donatello's forward thrusts were no mere unilateral lunges in the manner of the Iraq War; nay, Donatello grips the staff close enough to the middle that prior to his balanced yet powerful frontal blow, he whips the posterior end of his bo backward, without even needing to turn his head to look. Thus, two angles of attack are covered, which by my math is ONE HUNDRED PERCENT more angles than those covered by your favored reptiles in a single blow. Yield or perish.
posted by Kwine at 4:11 PM on May 15, 2007


Let us not forget that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles condones, nay encourages, that one crush one's multi-bladed shinguard wearing fellow citizens in a garbage press.
posted by Kattullus at 4:11 PM on May 15, 2007


Sadly, I cannot participate in any TMNT–related derail due to personal ignorance, beyond agreeing not to forget what Kattullus urges me to remember, vis-à-vis crushing one's fellows in garbage presses. Kattullus, your shinguard reminders shall not be in vain!
posted by cgc373 at 4:19 PM on May 15, 2007


nay, Donatello grips the staff close enough to the middle that prior to his balanced yet powerful frontal blow, he whips the posterior end of his bo backward, without even needing to turn his head to look. Thus, two angles of attack are covered

True, and similarly is a stopped clock right twice a day, and that is well and good for lazy watchmakers perhaps; but in the clockface of mortal combat, no such laxity is permitted, and while your purple avatar whiplashes the diameter of this deadly compass, each of the remaining 358 degrees is a Foot approaching on a killing vector, undeflected!
posted by cortex (staff) at 4:22 PM on May 15, 2007


The real world beckons, but my position is hardly controversial: Donatello rules, Mike and Raph drool.

[NOT SHREDDIST]
posted by Kwine at 4:26 PM on May 15, 2007


Don't make me come up there.

Well, if you do, don't be bringing your bo staff.
posted by dersins at 4:26 PM on May 15, 2007


I think my username allows me to speak with some authority about the TMNT arcade game (along with the multiple rolls of quarters I fed into one of the damn machines at Fun N Games on Rt. 9 in Framingham (added bonus: had a comic book store within walking distance)).

When playing with one or more friends, you needed a Donatello. The extreme range and damage swath more than made up for the delay. Solo, you were probably better off with Mikey. The problem with him and Raph was noted above -- very small target window, which combined with the new-fangled (at the time) 2.5D movement meant that you had to get a real feel for your vertical positioning before succeeding with Michaelangelo or Raphael.
posted by Rock Steady at 4:26 PM on May 15, 2007


Woo! This thread is definitely making it to the podcast! Hi Mat, Hi Jess!

I personally think I should get a callout just for pointing this out, and also because my username is really fun to say. Go on, say it out loud, you know you want to.

Okay, time to go to bed.

You know, I wasted so much of my life reading this thing, by the way.
posted by Deathalicious at 4:27 PM on May 15, 2007


Oh, fuck it all, you're talking about the arcade game not the NES game. Arcade game wise, Rock Steady has it--Donatello necessary for group, Mikey solo.

*harrumphs to dinner*
posted by Kwine at 4:34 PM on May 15, 2007


HAIKU

breaking the silence
Donatello speaks softly
and carries big stick
posted by Sparx at 4:40 PM on May 15, 2007


Woo! This thread is definitely making it to the podcast!

God. I can see that now:

M: "Hey, so, there was that thread in metatalk, about the whole Mam—main—"

J: "Maimonides—"

M: "Yeah, Mamonadees thing—"

J: "God, that was an awful thread."

M: "Yeah. Jesus Christ. I mean, what a—"

J: "What a shitter."

M: "Complete shitter."

J: "I know exactly what you mean."

M: "God."

J: "cortex was right about Leonardo, though."

M: "Oh, totally."

Oh, fuck it all, you're talking about the arcade game not the NES game.

Natch. Because no one should ever, ever talk about the NES game, because it is evil and should be wiped from the face of the earth.
posted by cortex (staff) at 4:41 PM on May 15, 2007 [3 favorites]


You know, TGBM is an anagram fro TMBG. That wasn't going to fly under the radar, mister.

Y'know, cortex, I really never noticed that.

[MIGHT NOT BE GIANTIST]
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 4:52 PM on May 15, 2007


Ok, because Framingham and TMNT came up, and in service to the continuing life of this thread, I'll mention that TMNT, Spy Hunter, Qix, Galaga, Dig Dug, Double Dragon, and many many more arcade games are all playable and lovingly maintained at Funspot in New Hampshire, a mere 2 or so hours in a car from Framingham. In fact, all of these are.
posted by psmith at 4:52 PM on May 15, 2007


Sure, but are you having an 8th anniversary Mefi bash there?

Actually, maybe you should. Cover the game for NE folks who can't fly out to PDX...
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:05 PM on May 15, 2007


I must admit you've got me there, cortex. In its defense and although it's no 8th Anniversary Portland style Mefi bash, Funspot is the hallowed land on which the perfect game of Pac-Man was played.

I'd happily attend a sister bash at Funspot but I'd not presume to suggest such a thing around here.
posted by psmith at 5:26 PM on May 15, 2007


Why do I feel like this is turning into a MeFixican standoff as everyone wants to make comment number 666?
posted by Kattullus at 6:04 PM on May 15, 2007


do
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:09 PM on May 15, 2007


you
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:09 PM on May 15, 2007


have
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:09 PM on May 15, 2007


any
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:09 PM on May 15, 2007


idea
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:10 PM on May 15, 2007


how
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:10 PM on May 15, 2007


easy
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:10 PM on May 15, 2007


it would be?
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:10 PM on May 15, 2007


To grab comment 666, I mean. :-)
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:13 PM on May 15, 2007


I almost said... "and nobody wants to be lame enough to do a series of one word comments"

...but, ah, what I didn't realize was that it would be truly evil to do so
posted by Kattullus at 6:20 PM on May 15, 2007


I noticed them coming mid-stream and had the same thought, Kattullus.
posted by psmith at 6:22 PM on May 15, 2007


Also, this thread is useless without a YouTube link to the Kids in the Hall Face of Evil sketch.

How on Earth can I be nostalgic for last goddamn year? Goddammit! Now I'm feeling nostalgic for my old nostalgias! I used to be nostalgic for the Roman Empire of the Five Good Emperors (if I could've been a high-born nobleman, natch). I used to be nostalgic for between-the-wars Paris. And now I'm doucheshittingly nostalgic for last republicock year because then I could find all of Kids in the Hall on YouTube? What the dick, me?

Actually, come to think of it, could nostalgia be the defining characteristic of the modern age? If we define its beginning at the renaissance, as is popular, then our age was born in a massive fit of extended nostalgia.
posted by Kattullus at 6:38 PM on May 15, 2007


That's an interesting thought. I've just been reading the Falwell thread on the blue and wonder if the defining characteristic of the modern roughly European age has been a terrible fascination with "a giant acid-spewing, fish-hook sequined, flaming chain-saw Godcock of death", as loquacious puts it.
posted by psmith at 6:57 PM on May 15, 2007


What the dick, me?

What the french, toast?
posted by Rock Steady at 7:29 PM on May 15, 2007


C'mon, we can do 700.

Here, I'll help.

Being critical (even disapproving) of the actions of Israel is not the same as being anti-semetic.

Discuss...
posted by Balisong at 8:59 PM on May 15, 2007


OmieWise and painquale: thanks for the feedback, it's an interesting aspect. I don't mean to suggest that I don't like Romeo and Juliet as people; I do. It's just that I was thinking about how R&J is one of my favorite Shakespeare plays because—I don't know how to pin this, but I just like the 'scenes', you know, interactions? "Dialogue" doesn't really seem precise. I'm not sure whether it's just because the language is good or whether the characters are more believable than with other Shakespeare plays (I won't even pretend to analyze that latter issue.) But yeah, I figured if anyone mistakes my appreciation for the work as a preference for its hopeless romance, I'll bring up that "R&J is no love story" sledgehammer. I can definitely see the more conventional side of the beauty in their pining etc. of course. Hooray for shades of gray.
posted by Firas at 9:03 PM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


I don't mean to suggest that I don't like Romeo and Juliet as people; I do.

i don't ... i dug them up and all they did was lounge around and stink
posted by pyramid termite at 9:06 PM on May 15, 2007


Yes, but you're a PYRAMID TERMITE, it's what you do. What on earth did you do in your previous live to deserve that incarnation anyway?
posted by Firas at 9:15 PM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Being critical (even disapproving) of the actions of Israel is not the same as being anti-semetic.

Discuss...


The United States is a republic, not a democracy.

January 1, 2001 was the first day of the new millennium, not January 1, 2000.

Superman could easily beat Goku.

Windows Vista is actually just a DOS shell.
posted by Slithy_Tove at 5:22 AM on May 16, 2007


Man, I need to block metafilter in my hosts file or something, it's just a procrastination machine. Alternatively:

Dear Ask Metatalk:

I am the most ineffective human being on the whole planet. How do I stop sucking?

Bisous,
F.
posted by Firas at 5:26 AM on May 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


If you search youtube, the "speed run" guy chooses Leonardo, and the "whole game on one quarter" guy chooses Donatello. Nobody chooses Mike or Raph. That's gotta tell you something. Personally, I liked Donatello because he could reach out and throw a dude over his shoulder without getting close. I'm a big abuser of the jump kick, though, so I'm pretty biased against close range combat. Does that make me an antiproximite?
posted by team lowkey at 12:19 PM on May 16, 2007


Does that make me an antiproximite?

The preferred term is "pro-gappist".
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:34 PM on May 16, 2007


antiproximite

Hey, cortex, can you lobby Matt and Jessamyn for an "outrageous pun" and/or "shaggy dog" flag?
posted by Kattullus at 2:20 PM on May 16, 2007


I'm struggling unsuccessfully to put together a response about how "I'm not going ter do yer lobbying foyer".
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:48 PM on May 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


Believe it or not, I wrote the comment, and the pun occurred to me afterwards. Yes, I was actually trying to express my personal opinions on TMNT fighting style, and not setting up a shaggy dog. I'm not sure which is more piteous.
posted by team lowkey at 3:20 PM on May 16, 2007


I don't like sesame seeds. That makes me an anti-sesamite.
posted by languagehat at 3:55 PM on May 16, 2007


I suppose I'm a fanatical philo-sesamite. En Garde!
posted by kosem at 4:31 PM on May 16, 2007


I like broccoli, but only the flowery tops. I'm an anti-stemite.
posted by team lowkey at 4:40 PM on May 16, 2007


I really dislike Noah's eldest son Sem, he really didn't pull his weight around on the ark.. I guess that makes me an antisemite.

...wait... *sigh*
posted by Kattullus at 4:43 PM on May 16, 2007


I've tried to respect and understand the culture and history of the Mack truck, but when you get right down to it...
posted by cortex (staff) at 4:45 PM on May 16, 2007


I don't think this new Will Wright game, Spore, is ever coming out, and you know what? I don't care; in fact, I've never liked any of the whole series of games he has done, especially the last one. Call me what you will, but that's just the way I am.
posted by Rock Steady at 4:50 PM on May 16, 2007


I like my erections full, you know? Hard...like they're supposed to be. So I don't care what you call me. Keep on with your special pleading.
posted by kosem at 4:52 PM on May 16, 2007


I think the Misfits were way better than the Holograms. "Truly outrageous" my ass.
posted by team lowkey at 5:01 PM on May 16, 2007


And don't get me started about that goddam "Simmah daahhn!" skit on SNL.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:02 PM on May 16, 2007


For over 20 years I coveted the Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine. What a letdown.
posted by psmith at 5:39 PM on May 16, 2007


I'm a Chinese lamp from 1934. That makes me semi-antique.
posted by dgaicun at 7:18 PM on May 16, 2007


I'm a person who would not buy such a lamp. I'm anti-semi-antique.

. . . also I hate the chinks.
posted by dgaicun at 7:26 PM on May 16, 2007


Whether or not the Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine delivers icy goodness as promised isn't really the point (especially after you run out of the neon-colored flavor syrup), it's the cool-kid cachet of owning one. I've also heard it's a great conversation starter with the ladies...
posted by chihiro at 7:41 PM on May 16, 2007


I'm not racist. I love chinks!
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 7:45 PM on May 16, 2007


I used to work for the BBC but things all went horribly wrong at the end and I made a lot of people sick. Literally. Now that I have left, of course, I am no longer Auntie's emetic.
posted by motty at 7:50 PM on May 16, 2007


Umberto Eco is a goddamn buffalo felcher. And so are all his ilk.
posted by psmith at 7:56 PM on May 16, 2007


I love chinks!

Exactly! I can't be racist, I love that cute way those people hold chopsticks! In their totally exotic cuisine!
posted by Firas at 8:15 PM on May 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


Firas: Man, I need to block metafilter in my hosts file or something, it's just a procrastination machine.

I started writing a response, but then I turned it into an FPP.
posted by russilwvong at 10:36 PM on May 16, 2007


. . . also I hate the chinks.

Obviously, you haven't wintered in a log cabin, you pro-gappist SOB.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 5:00 AM on May 17, 2007


Related to the TMNT above: A blog entry I wrote, with mp3s.
posted by klangklangston at 6:21 AM on May 17, 2007


STONEAGE BLATANT INJURED HURDLES
Caveman didn't jump well!
Hurdle power!

posted by cortex (staff) at 6:50 AM on May 17, 2007


CAVEMAN JUMP WELL! CORTEX HAS SPOKE HIM ASS OUT! CORTEX BIG MEANIE MEANMEANMAN. CAVEMAN CRY! WHY CORTEX WANT CAVEMAN CRY?
posted by Kattullus at 9:04 PM on May 17, 2007


Awesome, russilwvong! Now you just need to make me suck less in a couple dozen other ways, then me and you, we'll save the world!

by conquering it
posted by Firas at 11:11 PM on May 17, 2007 [1 favorite]


We're not going to make 800, are we? Ah well, it was fun while it lasted. See you in the next flameout thread.
posted by languagehat at 7:14 AM on May 18, 2007


lh, I'm surprised at you. In the days of the longboat (RIP) we'd think nothing of ~90 more comments in a thread like this.
posted by OmieWise at 7:34 AM on May 18, 2007


Maybe it'd go longer if y'all weren't such lamewads.
posted by klangklangston at 7:37 AM on May 18, 2007


Jews did WTC.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:39 AM on May 18, 2007


Jews did WTC.

Jews + OmieWise

posted by kosem at 8:01 AM on May 18, 2007


Jews did WTC.

Because they were circumcised!
posted by languagehat at 8:10 AM on May 18, 2007


Jews did WTC.

Because they were circumcised!


Because they were circumcized the WTC had a lower rate of cervical cancer.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:17 AM on May 18, 2007


Circumcized folks do need more elaborate and intense sexual experiences, I've heard.
posted by klangklangston at 8:19 AM on May 18, 2007


And make it snappy.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:20 AM on May 18, 2007


EPISODE #9629: "YO! M KIPPUR"

INT. DAY. CORTEX'S LAIR.

MOTTY: So Brian B. has chosen spread. I am breathing an extremely red mist and I would appreciate some suggestions.

DNESS2: I read that as [PARMESATANIST].

GNFTI: Did y'all hear the one about the dyslexic satanist?

ALL: Sigh... no.

GNFTI: Sold his soul to Santa.

EIDETEKER: Holy crap, I think dness2 just invented the counter-religion for the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

BRIAN B: I won the argument, hands down.

ETHEREAL BLIGH: That gets to the heart of it. Notice, also, that he has never bothered to cite a source for his quote other than the hate-site he has linked to. I, for one, would like to see that Maimonides quote cited specifically, in context, in its text in a respectable archive.

What Brian B. doesn't want to admit is that he's been flirting with antisemitism via either things he's been reading or someone who's been talking to him. He may not have been aware of this before these threads. But he's cherrypicking quotes from sources he clearly knows nothing about; the cherrypicking is suspiciously the cherrypicking that antisemites use in their literature, and when he cites his quotes, he links to an antisemite web site. That doesn't demonstrate that he himself is antisemitic, but it's extremely suggestive that what little he knows on this subject is from antisemitic sources.

By the way, however, as others have said, it is wrong to deny Maimonides's importance in the Jewish tradition or even in the western tradition. We read Maimonides at St. John's College, for example. Yes, this quote (if it's authentic) is taken out of historical context and, in context, is utterly similar to things said by other important religious figures of all faiths. It doesn't "prove" anything—but it is suspiciously similar to antisemitic blood libel, especially when it's promulgated in such willful ignorance and in denial of how unexceptional it is in context.

All that said, I'm certainly not advocating that Brian B. be banned because I don't think what he's said, and what this suggests about him, is sufficient to identify him as someone who is enough of a hardcore-enough antisemite. I would say the same about other kinds of bigotry—being merely wrong on MeFi isn't enough, being mildly bigoted isn't enough. There shouldn't be a particular kind of bigotry such that merely a suspicion of it is cause for banning.

“However, I would like to say that Judaism is a religion and not a ‘race’ within any reasonable meaning of the term (and therefore ‘racist’ is the wrong word).”

Well, there aren't any reasonable meanings of the term “race” that aren't equivalent to “ethnicity”. And while Judaism is clearly a religion, being a Jew can be an ethnicity. Since none of these terms have a rigorous meaning (or, in the case of the religious terms, a rigorous meaning we can all agree upon), it's best to allow people to use these terms as they apply them to themselves as they wish. Secular Jews have very good reasons to think of being Jewish as being of a particular “race”. Similarly, other Jews have very good reasons to focus exclusively on Judaism (for example, converts).


CYRANO: Are you the drunk chick I hooked up with Saturday night?

CORTEX: Hey, what are you guys doing in my lobbying foyer?

posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:22 AM on May 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


Because they were circumcized the WTC had a lower rate of cervical cancer.

And HIV transmission.
posted by OmieWise at 8:32 AM on May 18, 2007


This might be a good place for some longboat explanations. I mean, we've got the time, and I've never heard the story....
posted by anotherpanacea at 8:37 AM on May 18, 2007


anotherpanacea, I wouldn't dare step up to the plate: the Commish says it better than any of us ever could.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:40 AM on May 18, 2007


Don't think I didn't see that fucking OmniWise in that other thread, Paulie.
posted by OmieWise at 8:58 AM on May 18, 2007


Eh?
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:09 AM on May 18, 2007


goodnewsfortheinsane: Ok. It's almost clear. Chatfilter moves on a monthly basis. But... from where to where? Were there designated 'longboat' threads? It's a piece of metafiltercana that I still don't quite get.
posted by anotherpanacea at 9:10 AM on May 18, 2007


Oh, shit. I take it back. My penance in all kinds of ways. I'll send you some music via email...I found a CDr tacked to a bulletin board the other week and imagine my surprise when I actually really liked it. Once I get it on the computer I'll send it on to you, I think you'll like it too.

I feel like an ass.

What a way to treat a colleague, and such an hospitable one at that.
posted by OmieWise at 9:13 AM on May 18, 2007


an hospitable

MY EYES!!!!!!
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 9:14 AM on May 18, 2007


Chatfilter does not quite capture it. Poke around, find a thread, it will become clearer, before then becoming less clear. It's like zen that way, but not Xeni's crappy webzen, real zen. Plus, there are brats and donkeys, tart fruits and at least one varying obsession with Ass.
posted by OmieWise at 9:15 AM on May 18, 2007


God Damn Your Eyes.

Seriously, I did it on purpose, as a joke. I cannot provide any evidence, but, c'mon, you know me well enough, surely, to give me the benefit of the doubt.
posted by OmieWise at 9:17 AM on May 18, 2007


Oh Parmesatan, designated longboat threads! That would simultaneously be kickassingly cool and drearily purpose-defeating, wouldn't it?

looking forward to the tacky music, omni. or did you remove the tack? </midget performs drum roll with banana>
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:32 AM on May 18, 2007


So how did one find the latest longboat thread? I'm imagining something like a system of links as the last or near-last comment, but that doesn't seem to have been the case in that askme you link....
posted by anotherpanacea at 9:32 AM on May 18, 2007


Speaking of sunken booty, does this cell make Paris Hilton look Jewish?
posted by If I Had An Anus at 9:37 AM on May 18, 2007


anotherpanacea, if I remember correctly, the longboat clique would move forward 101 threads every month, unless there was some compelling reason to make an adjustment [NOT LONGBOATIST].
posted by amro at 9:44 AM on May 18, 2007


Well, shit, if we're gonna involve the lawyers I've got to deny any knowledge of Paris Hilton's cell.
posted by OmieWise at 10:00 AM on May 18, 2007


I prefer the knörr personally.

[LONGBOATIST]
posted by Kattullus at 10:33 AM on May 18, 2007


Blasphemy!

By Thor, if your SO wasn't the patron saint of longboatry, I would maim your onides in a heartbeat.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:42 AM on May 18, 2007


This is what comes from not rolling mob deep.
posted by OmieWise at 10:55 AM on May 18, 2007


He ain't a crook, son. He's just a shook one.
posted by kosem at 11:14 AM on May 18, 2007


JOEMENTUM
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:25 AM on May 18, 2007


BRANGELINA
posted by amro at 11:29 AM on May 18, 2007


SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW TROUT

best Wheel of Fortune clue evar

posted by cortex (staff) at 11:32 AM on May 18, 2007


SwOTRT
posted by OmieWise at 12:13 PM on May 18, 2007


Turducken.

Better Turducken.
posted by amro at 12:27 PM on May 18, 2007


Sino-Burrito
posted by psmith at 12:31 PM on May 18, 2007


I can't believe I read this whole thing, or that it's still open for comments, or that I don't know what this longboat you speak of is.
posted by jennaratrix at 2:45 PM on May 18, 2007


And you know what? (Might want to sit down for this.)

It's NOT BUTTER.

[NOT BUTTERIST]
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:02 PM on May 18, 2007


NO WAI
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:43 PM on May 18, 2007


Don't start, cortex, we all know where this leads.
posted by Kattullus at 10:51 PM on May 18, 2007


From the MeFi: Whassitallabout? thread:

hadjiboy... you're the jewish dude who got all upset about anti-semitism the other day, yes?
posted by jonson at 12:16 AM on May 19


I wonder if this'll be common.
posted by Kattullus at 11:10 PM on May 18, 2007


does anyone read the posts down here?

Don't you hate it when it's the middle of the night, and you've read everything metafilter has to offer, and there's nothing left to do, and nothing on TV, and even the cats have gone to bed, and you're thinking, "Eh, one more beer. It's Friday", but you really don't need the beer, and your not sure how you're going to fill the time drinking that beer, but you know you're not going to be able to sleep anyway, so why the hell not, and think maybe I'll play that cat-with-the-bow-and-arrow game one more time, or maybe check if SA had anything entertaining this week, but just end up refreshing MeTa a few times hoping some Australians decided to go crazy while the mods weren't looking?

Just me, huh? Carry on then.

P.S. Could some Australians go crazy, please? kthxby.
posted by team lowkey at 1:19 AM on May 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


I do hate it.

Whatever happened to Flash Fridays? There used to always be a plethora of time-suck I could stuff into my empty Friday nights.
posted by carsonb at 1:52 AM on May 19, 2007


I guess the universal youtubery did away with the frivolity of flash friday. Maybe I'll go search the youtube tag for something interessant.
posted by team lowkey at 2:06 AM on May 19, 2007


You lucky bastard with your youtube-surfing. Meanwhile I'm engaged in a sixteen-hour caffeinated essay-writing delirium.

(I can has pep talk plz?!)
posted by Firas at 2:10 AM on May 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


Well, I had missed the dancing horses thread, so that's a nice treat. Take a break and bask in the pageantry.

(You can do it! Write, write, write! Hold up, you've got a dangling participle there. No, you don't get creative license. Look, grammar is grammar, and you can't just... I don't care what languagehat says... well we're just going to have to agree to disagree... fine. Just fine. See if I peps u agin.)
posted by team lowkey at 2:34 AM on May 19, 2007


Something's afoot in the bowels of this thread.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 5:04 AM on May 19, 2007


*gives it a hand*
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 5:18 AM on May 19, 2007


This thread is getting too big for my bowels to handle--dammit. It took ten dialup minutes just to load the damn thing. That's a load.
posted by OmieWise at 6:05 AM on May 19, 2007


Autosummary:
"If quoting Maimonides gets one banned, then maimonides is essentially banned."
(Reads thread.)
*breaks down, reads thread*
BEST THREAD EVER.
thread:
Hate on Jews? I'm sorry, Brian. Read motty's quote.
If quoting Maimonides gets one banned, then Maimonides is essentially banned.
If quoting Maimonides gets one banned, then Maimonides is essentially banned.
Jews + OmieWise
Jews!
Jews? Jews? Oh Brian. Jews.
Especially if you're a Maimonides scholar?
Sorry, Brian. (Maimonides).
Especially if you're a Maimonides scholar?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:43 AM on May 19, 2007


You forgot the longboat!
posted by languagehat at 9:11 AM on May 19, 2007


Cowabunga!
posted by Kwine at 10:19 AM on May 19, 2007


motty versus me recap (actual quotes in order):

Original post by Malor: …one of the tenets of Scientology that's revealed late in the process is that non-Scientologists are not human, and not entitled to the moral protections that humans get. It is perfectly ok to lie to, cheat, steal from, or even kill a non-Scientologist.

My reply: I had no idea that Hubbard was familiar with Maimonides.

motty’s response: Sorry, but just precisely wtf does Maimonides have to do with this thread? The implication in your comment is that Jewish law in some way permits Jews to lie to, cheat, steal from or even kill non-Jews. That is an old antisemitic libel with no basis in fact. It is astonishing to see it repeated here.

Reply: motty, there is evidence. Spin it as you wish.

Response: It's a comparative archive of antisemitism, liberally diluted with Jewish anti-Zionist texts, Brian B., no matter where the authors may be from ethnically. That's why they list the Protocols of the Elders of Zion without mentioning the word 'forgery'.

Meanwhile, among other places, here's a page explaining how the texts that Shahak (and other antisemites) have used to spread lies about the Jews are actually interpreted within normative Judaism. Clue - that 'Thou Shalt Not Murder' bit in the Ten Commandments still applies after all. Shahak is, as he so often was, just plain wrong.

It has been a standard practice for some centuries for antisemites to take quotes out of context from the Talmud and elsewhere in order to make the Jews look bad, but it is strange to see someone attempting to do so here on MeFi. So what other ethnic groups do you hate enough to spread lies about, Brian B.? I'm sure we'd all love to hear more of your racist ideas and visit your racist web resources.


Reply: Motty, your link is just proof of the controversy you tried to deny and excludes all the other points by Shahak, especially as they are quoted in full from Maimonides on the other link. The racialism is yours to deny.

Response: Do you have serious reading comprehension problems, Brian B.? Otherwise I cannot make sense of your comment.

Reply: Motty, that would make you the one with reading comprehension problems.

Response Brian B., the religion of Judaism outlaws murder. Full stop. It's right there in the Ten Commandments and there is no getting round it. You have been trying to suggest that Jewish religious texts exist which contradict that, but in fact no such texts exists, as the link I posted demonstrates in the case of the misquotes from Shahak linked to by you earlier. Either you are deliberately trolling me right now or you do not know what 'reading comprehension' problems actually are. Meanwhile, I am curious. Why do you hate Jews so much?

Reply: Motty, full stop. I don't like racism or bigotry in any form and I won't apologize for yours or anyone else's, even in orthodox snippets. Address the points in the link, before you insist that they don't really exist. Apparently, it is lawful to kill a gentile under some circumstances. Quote: If a Jew has coitus with a Gentile woman, whether she be a child of three or an adult, whether married or unmarried, and even if he is a minor aged only nine years and one day—because he had willful coitus with her, she must be killed, as is the case with a beast, because through her a Jew got into trouble. (Maimonides).

Then it moved to this thread, which I can sum it up this way:

Motty responding to me: “now you are attempting to comment in the thread set up to discuss your own racism and bigotry”

I nominate that all demands and expectations for a libel victim’s own cooperation be henceforth labeled as “pulling a motty” after its author.
posted by Brian B. at 10:46 AM on May 19, 2007


Aaaaaaaand.... he's back!
posted by languagehat at 11:14 AM on May 19, 2007


Goddammit, I thought we had successfully derailed.

Brian B., anyone who wants to read your comments or motty's comments can do so. Anyone who is reading this probably already did, and probably didn't want to read them twice. Know when to let it go.
posted by amro at 11:16 AM on May 19, 2007


I've got a new idea for this thread: get mathowie or pb or whoever to post in it, so that they can know the full horror of this turd floating up their My Recent Comments page every day, and be inspired to code up a "Cease Following This Thread" button!
posted by hoverboards don't work on water at 11:34 AM on May 19, 2007 [2 favorites]


Brian B, your reading comprehension skills do need some work. Your summary misses the whole point of this thread. Leonardo or Donatello?
posted by team lowkey at 12:03 PM on May 19, 2007


I nominate that the phrase "I nominate that..." not be used like this, because it makes my insides hurt.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:17 PM on May 19, 2007


"I nominate that all demands and expectations for a libel victim’s own cooperation be henceforth labeled as “pulling a motty” after its author."

Point of order: You have to be recognized by the chair before you can nominate from the floor.

Also, you won't get a second.

When the floor is opened to new business, I will make a motion that all further discussions be handled through Robert's Rules of Order.
posted by klangklangston at 12:36 PM on May 19, 2007


>> an hospitable

> MY EYES!!!!!!

I actually pronounce that "a nospitable" a la "a nitem." But I hain't puttin' haitches where they don't belong: I'm a dickhead not a Cockney.
posted by davy at 12:42 PM on May 19, 2007


I second whatever crazy thing Brian B. is talking about!
posted by Kwine at 12:47 PM on May 19, 2007


This is the thread that keeps on giving!

Could someone supply some more examples of longboat threads?
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:43 PM on May 19, 2007


this isn't a longboat thread, it's a shortbus thread
posted by pyramid termite at 2:02 PM on May 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


Brian B. : Motty responding to me: “now you are attempting to comment in the thread set up to discuss your own racism and bigotry”

I'm debating whether or not to reignite the "race" argument. Signs point to no, but Fenway doesn't reopen for about an hour.

Also, go Madaeans!
posted by psmith at 2:12 PM on May 19, 2007


I do not want to fight with you or with anyone here Brian B, and quoting back at me a bunch of things I said when I was seeing through a red mist a couple of days ago is not going to change that.

So please accept my apologies for upsetting you by the things that I said after your words had upset me. I really can't be bothered to read it all back but I'm sure that I said things in anger that were over the top and unjustified, as I do normally do that kind of thing in anger.

It's pretty embarrassing for me as I've been using the internet for long enough now that I ought to have learned by now never to type through a red mist and it's been a while since this kind of thing has happened. Meanwhile, this has been a great derail, though I fear a lot of it has gone over my head.

More wooshing noises please.

Or we could, you know, just let it die already.
posted by motty at 2:31 PM on May 19, 2007


another little death panacea?
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 2:48 PM on May 19, 2007


La Petite Mort.

Motty, you seem like a nice guy. Not that you do or should give half a shit what I think, but I suggest ignoring Brian B. and using the remainder of this thread for some recipe exchanging or its equivalent.

That's what threads are for (and I'll be on your side forever more, with Stevie Wonder).
posted by psmith at 2:57 PM on May 19, 2007


Here's a soft shell crab recipe (it's the season here in the U.S.) I wrote for some friends.

[NOTKASHRUTIST]

Soft shell crabs are easy to clean, but it's even easier to ask your fishmonger to clean them for you.

Rinse the crabs and soak them in buttermilk for a little while.

Combine flour with some salt and pepper. Because I'm crazy like that, I also added some powdered garlic stuff.

Bust out a frying pan and add to it somewhere around a cup of peanut, vegetable, or some other high smoke point oil. The amount of required oil will depend on the size of the pan. I used a super large pan and approximately 1.33 cups of oil brought the liquid up to a hair's breadth less than half a crab's height. Maybe it was 1.34 cups. It was a splendid amount of oil either way.

Put the pan on a burner and set it somewhere around medium high. Wait for it to get wicked hot.

While you're waiting, dredge the crabs in the flour mixture. Coat them fully and shake off any excess.

Carefully place the crabs in the pan. Cook the crabs for three or four minutes on each side. Be careful for splattering oil.

Remove the crabs and set on paper towels to drain.

Consume however you fancy. The picture shows a simple sandwich with mayonnaise and tomato.

Sometimes I just leave them naked and pick them apart.

yum
posted by psmith at 3:07 PM on May 19, 2007


Coo ta, been a while since I had crabs.

Yum.

(Not what I said last time. Must try and find suitable seafood recipe for these occasions.)
posted by motty at 3:30 PM on May 19, 2007


Longboat, interrupted.

Holy shit do I miss Nice Donkey.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 4:08 PM on May 19, 2007


I still can't see how the author looked at that fairly mild Vermeer and connected it to that intense mind-rending story of hers.
posted by Firas at 4:42 PM on May 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


anotherpanacea, lunch with (at least) two crew members wasn't enough for you?

What was it Foucault said? "One must read everything, study everything, one must have the entire archive of an epoch at one's fingertips."

You don't have to be an ass (friendly or mal-formed), or dead, or crazy, to surmise who might have been on the boat, and follow their trail, ephemeral as such things are on the gray waters, until you find what it is you're looking for.
posted by OmieWise at 4:47 PM on May 19, 2007


Sorry, Omie... didn't occur to me to ask y'all. ;-) My real mistake was repeatedly looking at 9622 and failing to scroll down to the important bits.

Ladies and gentlemen, today I was in the company of (at least) two members of the cabal. [NOT KABBALIST]
posted by anotherpanacea at 5:10 PM on May 19, 2007


anotherpanacea: the cabal ≠ the longboat.

Although, part of the longboat is also part of the cabal, and some individuals in the cabal have strong lobbying powers with the longboat. Three former members of the longboat have received honorary positions with the cabal after being excommunicated, but one of them was later fired as a result of the gift-cards-for-sugar-cubes scandal. A couple rogue longboat agents once tried to overthrow the cabal - no one heard a thing from them since, but word has it they came back incognito and are trying to pare down the longboat from the inside out. Also, a tumultuous extramarital affair between a longboater and a cabalist led to what is now referred to as the "Great Rift", meaning that part of the cabal now refuses to even speak with the longboat. They maintain this is official party line, but opposing factions within the cabal are plotting a coup, or possible a merger between the longboat and the self-titled "Free Cabal". Meanwhile, rumours in the media of a planned hostile takeover of the cabal by the longboat has caused cabal stocks to skyrocket, buoying investors' confidence and confusing a handful of Vikings. Another controversy arose when the cabal loaned its flagship striker to the longboat just after the disastrous cup final which ended in a two hour penalty shootout during which a cabal member bit off the referee's ear. Also, two cabal members and a longboat deck hand started a photography magazine, but after six issues the longboater erased the cabal founders from the "official company history", prompting the resignation of the cabal duo and causing many to cancel their subscriptions. Most observers agree that the absolute low point in cabal-longboat relations came about when a maverick outsider started accusing random members of both groups of antisemitism, causing a bilateral name-calling meltdown.

But remember, the cabal ≠ the longboat. Clear?

Now, let's never speak of this again.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:58 PM on May 19, 2007 [2 favorites]


Besides, there's no such thing.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:01 PM on May 19, 2007


What is this cabal of which you speak?
posted by OmieWise at 7:48 PM on May 19, 2007


it's a secret masonic branch ... a long time ago, they even went as far as paving city streets with cabalstones
posted by pyramid termite at 7:58 PM on May 19, 2007


Funny you all should mention it, I have it on good authority that the vikings used smoke knights templar out of their kippahs.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 8:18 PM on May 19, 2007




700 trillion knights templar.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:30 PM on May 19, 2007


A little smoked knight templar on a schmeer...oy, forget about it.
posted by OmieWise at 8:34 PM on May 19, 2007


Meta, meta, meta.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 8:39 PM on May 19, 2007


Why is every other word in the last hundred comments "fnord?"
posted by dw at 10:02 PM on May 19, 2007


Why was 6 afraid of 7?
posted by team lowkey at 10:27 AM on May 20, 2007


How is Elisha Cuthbert like a steel drum?
posted by Firas at 10:29 AM on May 20, 2007 [1 favorite]


What's the difference between a clan of pygmies and a women's track team?
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:08 AM on May 20, 2007


Is 9 as tasty as they say?
posted by OmieWise at 11:09 AM on May 20, 2007


Why do girls just want to have fun?
posted by OmieWise at 11:15 AM on May 20, 2007


cortex: intruiged. What's the difference?
posted by Firas at 11:17 AM on May 20, 2007 [1 favorite]


One of those is a bunch of cunning runts and, right, I'll be going now
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:28 AM on May 20, 2007


ROFL
posted by Firas at 11:29 AM on May 20, 2007 [1 favorite]


We're
posted by languagehat at 11:54 AM on May 20, 2007


almost
posted by languagehat at 11:54 AM on May 20, 2007


at
posted by languagehat at 11:55 AM on May 20, 2007


800!
posted by languagehat at 11:55 AM on May 20, 2007


THIS THREAD IS CLOSED TO NEW COMMENTS
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:55 AM on May 20, 2007


wtf?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 11:55 AM on May 20, 2007


[802 is my area code - REPRESENT!!]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 11:57 AM on May 20, 2007


Well we just have to aim for 1000 now. Thread closure be damned!
posted by team lowkey at 11:59 AM on May 20, 2007


(And I grew up in the 805. What-what!)
posted by team lowkey at 12:02 PM on May 20, 2007


215 forever.
posted by psmith at 1:09 PM on May 20, 2007


No, it's only 1:18 here.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:18 PM on May 20, 2007


see also
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:18 PM on May 20, 2007


Was my nap worth it? Yes and no. I missed 800, but I had a nice dream.
posted by OmieWise at 1:31 PM on May 20, 2007


My drum machine is a 2112.
posted by psmith at 1:32 PM on May 20, 2007


I liked Moving Pictures better, but I never was much of a Rush fan.
posted by dw at 1:43 PM on May 20, 2007


I hereby claim 812 for the glory of Portugal.
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:47 PM on May 20, 2007


Dude, I'll check the markets tomorrow but I think you just doubled Portugal's glory.
posted by psmith at 3:12 PM on May 20, 2007


Miguel? Is that you?
posted by languagehat at 3:12 PM on May 20, 2007


"(And I grew up in the 805. What-what!)"

I read that as "I grew up in 805," some sort of Dark Ages shout-out.

"My drum machine is a 2112."

Oh, the Neil Peart.
posted by klangklangston at 4:18 PM on May 20, 2007


klangklangston: Oh, the Neil Peart.

You found me out. In truth I tranquilized him when he was riding around insulting everyone on the latest tour. Then I put him in my basement and made him play my weird 9/8 shit. Apocalypse in 9/8, yo.

Also, I chucked the 2112 drum machine because it wouldn't stfu about Ayn Rand.
posted by psmith at 4:58 PM on May 20, 2007 [1 favorite]


But his kit has 32 drums!
posted by klangklangston at 7:46 PM on May 20, 2007


But there's no excuse for Ayn Rand.
posted by psmith at 7:59 PM on May 20, 2007


32! DRUMS!
posted by Kattullus at 9:50 PM on May 20, 2007


He has 32! DRUMS! and then some.

Ayn Rand? *shrug*

News-Talk Comment 820, WBAP, Fort Worth!
posted by dw at 12:03 AM on May 21, 2007


OmieWise: why?
posted by Firas at 3:42 AM on May 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


It depends who you ask, but some say it's because they want to walk in the sun.
posted by OmieWise at 3:54 AM on May 21, 2007


… so, that's what jokes are like before they grow up?
posted by Firas at 4:01 AM on May 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


See, because if you take the initial consonants and switch them, it yields a different and more taboo phrase, so it's a kind of taboo-avoidance spoonerism. Is the thing.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:48 AM on May 21, 2007


Who you callin' pale, omie? You're whiter than some kind of very white thing.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 6:21 AM on May 21, 2007


How the hell did I miss the whole Longboat Era? I love crap like that. Someone email me when the next one launches, will ya?
posted by Rock Steady at 6:30 AM on May 21, 2007


Which is, itself, a sad indictment of the state of cross-cultural relations: that we see nothing troubling or taboo about 'cunning runts' as sufficient descriptor of a threatened, misunderstood people.

It really makes you, like, think.

posted by cortex (staff) at 6:51 AM on May 21, 2007


Since goretex has made me think far too early in the morning, I would like to point out that the 'runt' 'is the single smallest member of a litter. The 'clan of pygmies' refernced in the joke cannot be a 'bunch of runts' except in the unlikely cirsumstance that the smallest pygmies of every family were to somehow join forces in a mega collection of small humans bent on world....
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 7:19 AM on May 21, 2007


doubt it, cortex. it's just that in humour you can get away with calling girls cunts and pygmies runts. not so much the latter in polite discussion.
posted by Firas at 7:19 AM on May 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


It depends who you ask, but some say it's because they want to walk in the sun.

I think you are confusing correlation and causality.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:39 AM on May 21, 2007


latter? Damn near killed 'er.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:40 AM on May 21, 2007


I'd just like to say that even though I haven't gotten any of the 25pgs worth of papers I'd embarked on doing like 55 hrs ago I am *so* getting this stuff done today, motherfuckers!!! That is all.
posted by Firas at 7:54 AM on May 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


ANP: A Blijdorp zookeeper warned the victim before she was attacked. Several days before the incident, the caretaker implored the woman to maintain distance from the animal and not look straight into its eyes.

The gorilla may have interpreted the eye contact as threatening and may thus have become agressive, says a spokesperson for the Rotterdam zoo
. [source]

----------------

cortex, you tyrant, you killed the gorilla post just as I was about to post the above comment - a modern day parable which employs metaphor to teach us all the timeless lesson of, well, never looking a gorilla in the eye.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:49 AM on May 21, 2007


the patron saint of longboatry

Sorry I'm late. I know y'all were flashing the longboat signal, but I had my helmet on funny and it was blocking my view.

I'd like to say the longboat can take the cabal anyday. We've got oars, helmets, and some rotten herring. They've just got a bunch of secretive hand signals and languagehat.

I'd be willing to broker a trade for languagehat, but all I've got is this rotten herring.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 9:25 AM on May 21, 2007


cortex, you tyrant, you killed the gorilla post just as I was about to post the above comment

Yeah, but he's surpassed himself for witty deletion reasons. Spike!
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:47 AM on May 21, 2007


Hey! I was part of the original longboat crew!

*weeps manly, Viking tears*
posted by languagehat at 9:49 AM on May 21, 2007


I've been busy for pretty much the last week (stupid job) and haven't been around.

Yet despite being gone for a week, this thread still is getting activity in the "My Comments" thing.

Are you guys talking about boats now, or can I post more jokes?
posted by dios at 10:02 AM on May 21, 2007


You know what's really sad? If you tallied the amount of time I spent googling for work-related reasons against the amount of time spent googling for reference citations for deletion reasons, I don't know what would come out ahead.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:04 AM on May 21, 2007


Are you guys talking about boats now, or can I post more jokes?

false dilemma ahead
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:10 AM on May 21, 2007


Q: Why did the cops arrest the piano teacher?
Q: He was fingering A minor.
posted by Firas at 10:12 AM on May 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


Right. So we've already got languagehat. Who comes equipped with his own hat, that's close enough to a helmet for me.

I don't know if there's another member of the cabal (which does not exist) I'd be willing to trade the herring for. It may be rotten, but it's awfully tasty.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:31 AM on May 21, 2007


Okay. What do you call a black man playing the piano?
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:41 AM on May 21, 2007


A pianist, you racist.
posted by klangklangston at 11:06 AM on May 21, 2007


Q: Then there are the posts saying "Well we do you a favour answering your questions so you should be grateful we're here!" Actually, few questions get more than a sarcastic response telling people to use the search engine, and then degenerate into jokes about the PR. And somehow, people manage to answer questions on other school's fora without being offensive.

This is getting out of hand. First of all, there has hardly been a "polite" request to cease and desist.

Second of all, the PR has only been a source of almost bottomless conversation recently when a few of our members decided to madly post to increase their post count.

Third of all, I am absolutely sick of the one always being called on the spot or attacked with either discussions about the PR or being blamed for the increase usage of the PR on the forums. Due to a long running inside joke started by my predecessors on this forum, it is not a garment I can easily cast off. I believe I've been taking it in good humor for some time, especially since the above mentioned spam-athon, but now I am beginning to get pissed. Why don't you guys examine how many threads I actually started about the PR, or who's actually talking about it and bringing my name into it?! Don't just wildly point around and say, "SOE stop talking about the PR."

Fourth of all avocado, I have no idea who you are. Take a look at the posts asking questions, 99% of the time you'll see one of the regulars being the FIRST to answer the question SERIOUSLY and THOUGHTFULLY. Go ahead avocado, go through several pages and look. Do you want me to post my PM log as well of questions I have to answer? Even the people doing the bantering are not idiotic enough to immediately degenerate into banter, most understand the rule that the question must be answered first. And you'll notice how often people add in their thoughts before doing any form of bantering.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 11:20 AM on May 21, 2007


Really? I thought a honky-tonk nigger.

What? Some of my best friends are pianists.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:21 AM on May 21, 2007


[NOT PIANIST]
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:23 AM on May 21, 2007


Some of your mom's best customers are pianists.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:26 AM on May 21, 2007


An elderly lady phoned her telephone company to report that her telephone failed to ring when her friends called - and that on the few occasions when it did ring, her pet dog always moaned right before the phone rang. The telephone repairman proceeded to the scene, curious to see this psychic dog or senile elderly lady.

He climbed a nearby telephone pole, hooked in his test set, and dialed the subscriber's house. The phone didn't ring right away, but then the dog moaned loudly and the telephone began to ring.

Climbing down from the pole, the telephone repairman found:

1. The dog was tied to the telephone system's ground wire via a steel chain and collar.
2. The wire connection to the ground rod was loose.
3. The dog was receiving 90 volts of signaling current when the phone number was called.
4. After a couple of such jolts, the dog would start moaning and then urinate on himself and the ground.
5. The wet ground would complete the circuit, thus causing the phone to ring.

Which demonstrates that some problems CAN be fixed by pissing and moaning.
posted by anotherpanacea at 11:34 AM on May 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


Some of your mom's best customers are pianists.

How did you know my mother is a piano teacher?
posted by grapefruitmoon at 12:37 PM on May 21, 2007


Since I'm never going to be one of the cool kids, I'll never be invited into any cabal, nautically minded and horned helmeted or otherwise.

But I will leave you with this old, dumb joke.

A priest, a Boy Scout, and Rush Limbaugh are flying to a political event on a small plane. Halfway through the flight the pilot comes on the intercom. "Folks, we're having engine trouble and there's nowhere to land. The good news is that we have three parachutes. The bad news is that I'm taking mine and leaving. See ya!"

With that announcement, Rush Limbaugh bolts out of his seats and says, "I AM THE MOST IMPORTANT VOICE IN AMERICAN BROADCASTING, AND I MUST CONTINUE TO TELL AMERICA WHY LIBERALS ARE EVIL!" He grabs a parachute and jumps out of the plane.

The priest turns to the boy scout and says, "Son, I have lived a long life, so you take the last parachute."

The boy scout says, "Father, thanks, but I think we'll both be fine. Rush Limbaugh took my knapsack."

(Comment 850 means I can mention KOA in Denver.)
posted by dw at 1:07 PM on May 21, 2007


I'll confuse correlation with causality any day, as long as I can keep my Cyndi Lauper records. (I think you've seen my several copies of She's So Unusual.)
posted by OmieWise at 3:50 PM on May 21, 2007


The question boils down to comparability of in-group/out-group morality divides between what Maimonides taught 800 years ago (and that is apparently still ascribed to by the Orthodox community) and Hubbard's "fair game" outlook wrt non-Scientology enemies.
(Via Copernic autosumarizer )
posted by acro at 8:07 PM on May 21, 2007


the question basically deals with portabello mushrooms and whether grocery store clerks should recognize them as they ring them up
posted by pyramid termite at 9:06 PM on May 21, 2007


What's going on here? Are you not even going to try to make it to 900? Well, I can't say I'm not disappointed in you.

*stomps off*
posted by amro at 9:18 AM on May 22, 2007


There is only do or do not, amro.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:31 AM on May 22, 2007


True.
posted by amro at 9:43 AM on May 22, 2007


im in my pants mackin...wait, no I'm not
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 10:59 AM on May 22, 2007


While going through his wife’s dresser drawers, a farmer discovered three soybeans and an envelope containing $30 in cash. The farmer confronted his wife, and when asked about the curious items, she confessed:

“Over the years, I haven’t been completely faithful to you.”

“When I did fool around, I put a soybean in the drawer to remind myself of my indiscretion,” she explained.

The farmer admitted that he had not always been faithful either, and therefore, was inclined to forgive and forget her few moments of weakness.

“I’m curious though,” he said, “Where did the thirty dollars come from?”

“Oh that, ” his wife replied, “Well, when soybeans hit ten dollars a bushel, I sold out!”
posted by anotherpanacea at 11:39 AM on May 22, 2007


John Kerry walks into a bar.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:48 AM on May 22, 2007


Bartender says "Why the long face?"
posted by dersins at 2:27 PM on May 22, 2007


So are we going to make 900?
posted by languagehat at 2:39 PM on May 22, 2007



y
^
|
|
>~~~~~~-[8>~
|
|
< ------------------------------------> x
|
|

>~~~~~~~~~~~8>~
|
|
|
(snakes on a plane)

posted by Firas at 2:40 PM on May 22, 2007 [3 favorites]


I mean, we've got, what, three weeks, but it will take dedication. And I'm not sure I see sufficient dedication.

*gives best top-sergeant glare*
posted by languagehat at 2:41 PM on May 22, 2007


I want those motherfucking snakes out from between my motherfucking comments!
posted by languagehat at 2:42 PM on May 22, 2007


If we could get Dizzy and bugbread in here, we'd have cakes on a pain.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:49 PM on May 22, 2007


A priest, a rabbi, and a blonde walk into a bar.

The bartender says, "What is this, some kind of joke?"
posted by dw at 3:13 PM on May 22, 2007


If we could get Dizzy and bugbread in here, we'd have cakes on a pain.

Fuck cake. What is it with this cake shit in every thread? Cake is for punk-asses. It's totally overrated. Brownies are where it's at.


And, yes, I'm just trying to get told to eat shit and die in yet another thread.
posted by dersins at 3:16 PM on May 22, 2007


Oh, come on. You have to admit it was a wonderful turn of phrase under the circumstances.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:20 PM on May 22, 2007


Oh, no doubt.

Which is why I'm hoping for a repeat.
posted by dersins at 3:24 PM on May 22, 2007


Breach it and fly.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:27 PM on May 22, 2007


Wait. Hold on.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:30 PM on May 22, 2007


Bruschetta implied!
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:31 PM on May 22, 2007


Um.

Huh?
posted by dersins at 3:33 PM on May 22, 2007


Meat-chit, unfried?
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:36 PM on May 22, 2007


Guys, guys! Snakes on a cartesian plane! COME ON I THOUGHT IT WAS FUNNY OMG LAFF ALREADY
posted by Firas at 3:38 PM on May 22, 2007 [1 favorite]


I think the cortex bot is broken. Maybe one of the admins can reboot it and tht'll fix the problem.
posted by dersins at 3:38 PM on May 22, 2007


Each hit untied!
Bleach it, man-fry!
Crete snit! Bad tie!
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:47 PM on May 22, 2007


*dumps bucket of water on cortex, slaps him perhaps a tad harder than necessary*

SNAP OUT OF IT MAN!
posted by languagehat at 3:54 PM on May 22, 2007


Oh, I love it when languagehat does his Shatner voice.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 3:55 PM on May 22, 2007


im in ur cult thred fskn ur my comments
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 3:59 PM on May 22, 2007


o rly?
posted by dersins at 4:03 PM on May 22, 2007


A priest, a rabbi, and a blonde walk into a bar.

The bartender says, "What is this, some kind of joke?"
posted by dw at 5:13 PM on May 22


Hmm... so Catholic, Jewish and blonde jokes....

How did the priest know that one of the nuns was on the rag? He tasted blood on the alter boy's cock.

Why do Jews wear generic rubbers?
Because they are cheap fuckers.

Little blonde girl comes home from school and says: "Mommy, is it true that babies come out where boys put their penises in?" Mother says, "Yes, dear." The little blonde girl gets a scared look on her face and says, "Won't that bust my teeth?"
posted by dios at 4:46 PM on May 22, 2007 [1 favorite]


...so the second nun turns to the third'n and says, "sister, you'd better go first; I need to douche after you gargle."

BAD TASTE THEATRE
posted by cortex (staff) at 4:54 PM on May 22, 2007


Why did 4 blow 8?
posted by team lowkey at 5:04 PM on May 22, 2007


Man, so I was over at MeTa 8870, as linked from some other thread, and I was noticing a couple of things:

First, it's weird now reading Cortex's pre-mod comments. They seem prescient, or like he was already weilding the power. Act like a mod long enough and get the job?

Second, it's weird to see members who have been here longer act like random jerkasses toward each other. Like, who knew that y2karl and Ryvar had some sort of weird feud going on? I've seen that a few other times recently, I think with dhartung and psmealey (though I could be wrong on the psmealey part), and it always seems random that there's some long-seated grudge held one way or the other.

And it makes me feel better that I genuinely like a lot of people I used to consider unredeemable dipshits (like Alex Reynolds, who's become— third time's the charm— a really stand up guy. I still disagree with him fairly often, but both he and dios seem to have really mellowed).

That thread also, vaguely horribly, made me feel like maybe I don't transgress the community norms as much as I sometimes feel like I do (like when I come back to a thread and go "Damn, I was an angry drunk... Well, let's see if I can salvage these comments"). It's also always odd to see that a lot of former regulars just aren't around here anymore. I spent a couple years lurking before I got in, and a lot of them have just vanished. Which happens on any forum, I guess, but it makes me feel crotchety.
Oh, and what was with the suffix "mc" for a while? Rush, david, jon? On some subconscious level, I think I just imagined them as brothers, though I think they were (at most) just all dirty Irish.

Anyway, as this lapses further into chat— Anyone know the best way to ship two awesome Sony APM cabinet speakers across the country? I'm worried about them being fragile, as they're suspended plates (rather than those damn paper cones), but I don't know what to do with them. Bonus points if you know how to ship a girlfriend's violin that's tied with so much sentimental value that any jostling will lead to heartache...
posted by klangklangston at 5:09 PM on May 22, 2007


Also, DUDE, found free porn passwords online today and am glad that the site's inept DRM on movie downloads can be circumvented simply by having a Mac!
posted by klangklangston at 5:10 PM on May 22, 2007


Man, so I was over at MeTa 8870, as linked from some other thread

OMG ME TOO!!11!!

I think my favorite part was this comment from quonsar, which just seems so... different from the rest of his oeuvre.

dios seem[s] to have really mellowed

Um. Mellowed. OK. I guess that's one way to look at it.

Oh, and don't ship the violin. Carry it with you. What're you, nuts?
posted by dersins at 5:19 PM on May 22, 2007


And it makes me feel better that I genuinely like a lot of people I used to consider unredeemable dipshits (like Alex Reynolds, who's become— third time's the charm— a really stand up guy.

Yeah, same here. Who'da thunkit? I'm always glad when life doesn't make me even more cynical than I was.
posted by languagehat at 5:24 PM on May 22, 2007


OMG ME TOO!!11!!

ZOMG ME THREE!!!33!

First, it's weird now reading Cortex's pre-mod comments. They seem prescient, or like he was already weilding the power. Act like a mod long enough and get the job?

Mix and match; I was reading another one from that same period today for some researchy reason and was struck by how catty and provocative I was being that day.

I like (read: hate, sort of) how the new activity page makes it a lot easier to go back and browse the beginning of my commenting history. I was so very, very much a loudmouth idiot finishing up college.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:24 PM on May 22, 2007


"I think my favorite part was this comment from quonsar, which just seems so... different from the rest of his oeuvre."

You mean his moment of clarity?

"Oh, and don't ship the violin. Carry it with you. What're you, nuts?"

They don't allow them on flights, my girlfriend sez. Maybe I should check for myself.

"I was so very, very much a loudmouth idiot finishing up college."

Now that I've finally finished up college, I hope to continue to be a loudmouth idiot.

"Yeah, same here. Who'da thunkit? I'm always glad when life doesn't make me even more cynical than I was."

I have to work really hard to not be unnecessarily dickish to those in whom I perceive the facile cynical attitude that I had adopted for most of my surly adolescence.
It's amazing, I can trace almost exactly the end of that mopey sneering to when I started drinking beer and having sex regularly. Post hoc ergo propter hoc?
posted by klangklangston at 5:36 PM on May 22, 2007


So, tomorrow I have this presentation some university deans and vice presidents and bigwigs.

Only I don't, since I ceded my speaking role in the name of politics (my dean isn't on the committee).

But I still need to be ready to give data from the survey I ran, of which I have about 80 pages worth. And here's the rub:
-- If I prepare and bind up the data then flag and highlight it for easy reference, no one will even ask the slightest question about the survey and I'll have killed a tree with my stabby paper, but

-- If I blow it off and don't prepare, the only questions asked will be about my survey, and I'll be making crap up and sabotage the proceedings.

So, I'm thinking instead I'm going to print out a thread or three, bind those up, and then when people call on me, I'll just read comments that seem germane. Or not germane, just to make it interesting.

Any suggestions for which thread I should print out?
posted by dw at 9:25 PM on May 22, 2007


Any suggestions for which thread I should print out?

Other than this very thread?

To wit:

Q: "dw, can you tell us more about this survey?"

A: "Eat shit and die, you little fuckweasel."
posted by dersins at 10:15 PM on May 22, 2007


Oh! Now do Snakes on a Polar Coordinate Plane!
posted by spiderskull at 11:53 PM on May 22, 2007


You're traveling across country, klang? Where and wherefore?

You know, just because this is devolving into chat and such. Not because I'm, like, stalking you or something... you gotta purty mouth.
posted by team lowkey at 11:55 PM on May 22, 2007


Ipswtich.
posted by OmieWise at 5:19 AM on May 23, 2007


Team Lowkey— Man, folks were ragging on me (well, Wolof, who has this inexplicable hate on for me) because I mentioned that I was going to LA because my girlfriend got a job there, too often. I leave the 30th.
And now I'm over at my parents' house because the neighbors who left for the summer finally had their internet turned off. Jerks.
posted by klangklangston at 5:35 AM on May 23, 2007


Man, would you shut up about LA already? I'll admit that buying a sockpuppet (with a lower user number, no less) to ask about it was a good strategy, but I saw right through it.
posted by OmieWise at 6:17 AM on May 23, 2007


Personally I've been working on becoming more of an angry dick.

Hey, anybody want to start an inexplicable feud?
posted by Kattullus at 6:25 AM on May 23, 2007


Kattullus? Is that GERMANIC?

You know who else was germanic?!
posted by Firas at 6:36 AM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]



You know who else was germanic?!


Der Kommissar?

omg 900!
posted by dersins at 7:58 AM on May 23, 2007


like Alex Reynolds, who's become— third time's the charm

Wait, who's Alex Reynolds now? I wasn't paying attention, I was too busy causing Kattullus the pain and suffering he needs to be more of an angry dick.

(No, seriously. Who's on first? Alex Reynolds? WHUT?)
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:21 AM on May 23, 2007


He's been calling himself "mathowie".
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:30 AM on May 23, 2007


I seeeeeeeeeee. It's all becoming very clear. Yesssssssssssssss.

(Um. I got nothing. Nothing to see here folks.)
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:32 AM on May 23, 2007


The fact that you don't know the name under which AlexReynolds is currently posting speaks very highly of him, I would think.
posted by dersins at 8:41 AM on May 23, 2007


I'm in completely agreement that AR made a turnaround into one of the members of the community whose views I like best to read. That's quite something since, even though I agreed with his positions before, I was not at all a fan.

I can't believe I missed 900. Fuck. I suck at MetaTalk.
posted by OmieWise at 8:57 AM on May 23, 2007


I'd just like to step in here and say that Joey and Kym wuz robbed.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 9:03 AM on May 23, 2007


*claims thread for AlexReynolds and all his airs*
*plants flag*
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 9:47 AM on May 23, 2007


Man this new activity interface makes stalking easy.

Ah yes, I recall reading that double call-out call-out where Wolof had at you, but managed to not pay any attention to the personal feuding. I'll need to correct that in the future.

Anyway, welcome to the best coast. LA sucks, of course.

And, Kattullus? Calling my comment a "shaggy dog" was waaay out of line. It's a personal attack on me, and it's offensive to dogs. I hope you die in a fire while choking on a bag of dicks.
posted by team lowkey at 10:37 AM on May 23, 2007


comment addressing the bag of dicks versus bucket of cocks convention
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 10:53 AM on May 23, 2007


A woman has a week-long business trip to Seattle in January. By Friday, the endless rain has her depressed and distraught. She snaps, to no one in particular, "DOES IT EVER STOP RAINING HERE?"

A boy looks up at her and says, "How should I know? I'm only 8."
posted by dw at 10:55 AM on May 23, 2007


What the hell is the point of Rhode Island, anyway? It looks like Massachusetts' armpit hair. Why don't they just merge it with Connecticut and get it over with?
posted by dw at 10:56 AM on May 23, 2007


I bought a copy of Krug's "Don't Make Me Think" yesterday for my new content writer.

I just noticed that the bookstore's price tag truncated the name of the book by dropping the final letter in "think," which gives the book a whole new meaning.

I think it's a secret plot by the Jews. Ron Paul told me himself.
posted by dw at 10:59 AM on May 23, 2007


MUST HAS MORE COMMENTS
posted by languagehat at 12:10 PM on May 23, 2007


LOL
posted by languagehat at 12:11 PM on May 23, 2007


Rhode Island, in a transparent attempt to compensate for its small size, gave itself the longest official state name: The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.

Fun fact.

Carry on.
posted by amro at 12:19 PM on May 23, 2007


You know what I like? I like small tags. I just really like 'em. Fuckin' great.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:24 PM on May 23, 2007


No one cares what you like, cortex. Becoming a mod hasn't changed that.

Well, to tell you the truth, I've always cared, but I was afraid you'd make fun of me if I told you that.

posted by OmieWise at 12:28 PM on May 23, 2007


*makes fun of OmieWise*
posted by languagehat at 12:32 PM on May 23, 2007


lol omiewise has feelings rofl

I'm just fucking around. These losers aren't worth your time, anyway. Don't listen to 'em.

You want to go somewhere after class, maybe?

posted by cortex (staff) at 12:41 PM on May 23, 2007


I just knew, knew, that it would be you, team lowkey, that would take this opportunity to show just how ignorant and boorish a human being can be. Thank you for living up to everybody's opinion of you. Incidentally, here's a representative and random list of some things I have a higher opinion of than I do of you:

- The dingleberry I cleaned off my cat last night.
- Stalin's Chief of Secret Police and all around rapin' n' torturin' baddie Lavrenty Beria.
- The monster in my closet (no for serious, it's real!)
- The Demon Marsha Stewart
- Kittens. Hitler kittens.
- The people who churn out unfunny cat macro after unfunny cat macro. Srsly thay shudd get dedd.
- Adorable puppies that will grow up to become Hitler.

But not to give you the egoboost of thinking that I actually think that much about you at all, here's a list of things I have a lesser opinion of than I do of you:

- Your mom.
- Your mom, Hitler.
- Gandhi (talk about overrated, sheesh!)
- My uncle for convincing me that there's a monster in my closet (no, it's there, I've seen it!)
- That durned mole in my yard. I'm a-goin' out with mah stix of dynomite to blow the sucka to kingdom come, heee-yah!
- The real Marsha Stewart.
- Your mom, Brian B.

So, team lowkey, you doucheheaded microass, why don't you go find inner peace on Free Republic?
posted by Kattullus at 12:43 PM on May 23, 2007


*shakes fist at lh, adjustable text sizes*

Let's do it.

I wish I was a Mole in the Ground. Consider yourself double feuded, Kattulloser.
posted by OmieWise at 12:50 PM on May 23, 2007


Jesus H. Christ, Kattullus, I knew you were obsessed with me, but I had no idea to what depth. I'd work on a retort, but everybody knows that you're just a trolling puppy hater pleading for attention. You're not worth my time. Go suck Hitler's cock, and leave the longboating to us grown-ups.
posted by team lowkey at 12:55 PM on May 23, 2007


Every state has something its Rotary Club can boast of
Some product that the state produces the most of
Rhode Island is little, but oh my
It has a product anyone would buy

Copper comes from Arizona
Peaches come from Georgia
Lobsters come from Maine
The wheat fields are the sweet fields of Nebraska
And Kansas gets bonanzas from the grain

Ol' whiskey comes from ol' Kentucky
Ain't the country lucky?
New Jersey gives us glue
And you - you come from Rhode Island
And little ol' Rhode Island is famous for you

Cotton comes from Louisiana
Gophers from Montana
And spuds from Idaho
They plow land in the cow land of Missouri
Where most beef meant for roast beef seems to grow

Grand canyons come from Colorado
Gold comes from Nevada
Divorces also do
And you - you come from Rhode Island
And little ol' Rhode Island is famous for you

Pencils come from Pennsylvania
Vests from (V)est Virginia
Tents from (Tent)essee
They know mink where they grow mink in Wyomin(k)
A camp chair in New Hamp(chair) - That's for me

Minnows come from Minn(o)sota
Coats come from Dakota
But why should you be blue?
For you - you come from Rhode Island
And little ol' Rhode Island is famous for you
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:17 PM on May 23, 2007


Little Rhody may be the retarded nephew of the other 49 states, but saying we should merge with Connecticut? That's insulting!

Connecticut should throw in the towel and declare itself an extended suburb of New York City. An extended suburb THAT SUCKS.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 1:18 PM on May 23, 2007


AHA! The AlexReynolds mystery has been solved. My sources have come through.

Excellent.

They shall be given anonymous positions on the longboat, wearing ski masks to hide their true identity. Ski masks and Groucho Marx glasses. At the same time. This is the way it shall be.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 1:26 PM on May 23, 2007


You needed sources? Most of us just needed paying attention...
posted by dersins at 3:17 PM on May 23, 2007


I don't even know who AlexReynolds is. What I do want to know is what P_G's new handle is (although I suspect I know, just need confirmation. Promise to be discreet. Et cetera.)
posted by Firas at 3:20 PM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]


"I don't even know who AlexReynolds is. "


N00b
posted by klangklangston at 4:21 PM on May 23, 2007


How many Yalies does it take to change a light bulb?

None. New Haven looks better in the dark.
posted by dw at 4:27 PM on May 23, 2007


How many art directors does it take to change a light bulb?

Does it have to be a light bulb?
posted by dersins at 4:33 PM on May 23, 2007


How many stock brokers does it take to change a light bulb?

It's burned out? SELL GE!!!!!!!
posted by dw at 4:45 PM on May 23, 2007


How many Humboldt Country residents does it take to change a light bulb?

Uh, what was the question again? And you got any Doritos?
posted by dw at 4:48 PM on May 23, 2007


How many Marin County residents does it take to screw in a light bulb?

None. Marin County residents screw in hot tubs.
posted by dersins at 5:02 PM on May 23, 2007


Most of us just needed paying attention...

Yeah, see. I don't do that.

What were you saying?
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:28 PM on May 23, 2007


How many feminists does it take to change a lightbulb?

That's not funny.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:31 PM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]


tee hee.
posted by Firas at 7:37 PM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]


This whole thread is crazy talk. Y'all been talkin' crazy.
posted by psmith at 9:17 PM on May 23, 2007


How many libertarians does it take to change a lightbulb?

Ten. One to change it, and nine to prattle on for hours about how they didn't need the government to do it for them.
posted by dw at 10:29 PM on May 23, 2007


At this point, I don't think it's fair to the user who used to be Alex Reynolds for people to be talking about his real identity. I'll admit that I really don't like people getting banned and then coming back under another name and then even doing it a second time. But this third incarnation of AR on MeFi has shown a big change in his personality and he's a smart, thoughtful, and not provocative member. And he's now been around long enough that he's pretty well-known under this new guise. I suspect that most of the people who recognize his new name don't know he's AR and while I believe strongly in accountability and all that, in this case the problem is that I'm certain that it's not easy for AR to restrain the thin-skinned side of his personality (I know that it's taken a lot of work for me to manage this in comparison to my early days on MeFi) and the more people that know that this user is really AR, and who remember AR, the more they're going to interact with this user just as if he were the AR of old. They'll be biased and make it much more difficult for him to maintain this much more positive persona. So I think that for this reason we shouldn't reveal who AR is. It's better for everyone.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:30 PM on May 23, 2007


How many Democrats does it take to change a lightbulb?

40. Two to blame the rich, one to raise taxes on the wealthy to buy the bulb, and 37 bureaucrats to write the guidelines as to how the old lightbulb is removed and disposed of and how the new lightbulb is to be installed and also to write up all the necessary required forms, all while blaming the rich.

How many Republicans does it take to change a lightbulb?

Two. One to blame the poor gay black feminist Democratic abortion doctors for the outage, and one to outsource the lightbulb replacement job to Halliburton on a no-bid contract (for $871M).

How many greens does it take to change a lightbulb?

Give them some time, will ya? The sun went down before they could reach consensus on whether a compact fluorescent using wind power was better for the environment than an LED light using solar power.
posted by dw at 10:37 PM on May 23, 2007


how many ethereal blighs does it take to change a light bulb?

If one examines expressionism, one is faced with a choice: either accept cultural discourse or conclude that consensus must come from communication. Thus, an abundance of theories concerning the bridge between language and class may be revealed. The main theme of the works of Burroughs is the role of the poet as observer.

In the works of Burroughs, a predominant concept is the concept of submodern consciousness. However, if expressionism holds, we have to choose between posttextual socialism and the cultural paradigm of narrative. Sontag promotes the use of expressionism to attack hierarchy.

“Society is part of the futility of culture,” says Lacan. In a sense, the premise of poststructural nihilism suggests that sexual identity has intrinsic meaning. Derrida suggests the use of expressionism to analyse and deconstruct reality.

If one examines posttextual socialism, one is faced with a choice: either reject expressionism or conclude that discourse comes from the collective unconscious, but only if Debord’s essay on poststructural nihilism is valid; otherwise, we can assume that government is impossible. But several discourses concerning posttextual socialism exist. Bataille promotes the use of Sontagist camp to attack class divisions.

Thus, Parry[1] states that we have to choose between expressionism and Foucaultist power relations. Any number of deappropriations concerning the failure, and some would say the collapse, of neomodernist class may be discovered.

But the primary theme of Hamburger’s[2] critique of dialectic narrative is not, in fact, discourse, but subdiscourse. Bataille suggests the use of posttextual socialism to read language.

However, the characteristic theme of the works of Eco is the meaninglessness, and therefore the genre, of postcapitalist sexual identity. Lyotard uses the term ‘poststructural nihilism’ to denote a dialectic totality.

Thus, a number of dematerialisms concerning posttextual socialism exist. Sontag uses the term ‘the subcultural paradigm of reality’ to denote not discourse, as expressionism suggests, but neodiscourse.

In a sense, if posttextual socialism holds, we have to choose between poststructural nihilism and patriarchial subcapitalist theory. The example of expressionism prevalent in Eco’s The Aesthetics of Thomas Aquinas emerges again in The Island of the Day Before.

(to be continued)
posted by pyramid termite at 10:40 PM on May 23, 2007 [3 favorites]


What's the difference between a librarian and a large pizza?

A large pizza can feed a family of four.
posted by dw at 10:41 PM on May 23, 2007


How many Heisenbergs does it take to change a lightbulb?
posted by dw at 10:41 PM on May 23, 2007


hell, i could feed a family of four for a week with a librarian ... only problem is, i wouldn't have any antlers to hang on my garage
posted by pyramid termite at 10:44 PM on May 23, 2007


pyramid termite, close, but you're giving him way too much credit for analysis. He's more of a full-bore uncited synthesis type.
posted by Firas at 10:45 PM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]


you're right, firas, he's a full-boor unexcited lethesis hype, for sure
posted by pyramid termite at 10:51 PM on May 23, 2007


What's with the gratuitious nastiness round these parts, people? Must I submerge you all in a LOVE BOMB?!
posted by Firas at 11:09 PM on May 23, 2007 [1 favorite]


Here's a Rhode Island fact -- they have always had at least four electoral votes, and even had five between 1912 and 1928.
posted by dw at 11:29 PM on May 23, 2007


Stop fucking up recent activity!!!
posted by team lowkey at 12:03 AM on May 24, 2007


dw, it is SO uncertain what the answer to your riddle is.


team lowkwy can suck it
posted by dersins at 2:51 AM on May 24, 2007


hey, that was 950. the part of me that loves round number says that haters can also suck it.
posted by dersins at 2:54 AM on May 24, 2007


Firas is right. I think there's virtues and vices in both styles, but full-bore uncited synthesis fits my generalist personality much better.

No one's managed to parody me very well, so far, even though it seems people recognize my writing here and it's something of a running joke. I wonder why that is. Most attempts I've seen take one aspect and amplify greatly while ignoring the other things that are characteristic.

Anyway, good try, pyramid termite—sometimes I wish I wrote more like your parody. By the way, our argument in the copyright thread was regretfully heated. And by "regretfully", I mean that I've actually been regretting it. I think you thought that I was making fun of you—and there's good reasons you thought that, if you did—but I mostly had in mind a generic point of view (technically called a "strawman") that I was arguing against. I really do think there should be more opportunities for artists and that they should be able to support themselves—it's a topic that, while writing, I discovered I had strong feelings about. You should know that I think highly of you. I'm sorry if I was offensive.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 3:26 AM on May 24, 2007


Oh, the dearth of images!
posted by OmieWise at 5:31 AM on May 24, 2007


Here, have a piece of chicken.
posted by amro at 7:03 AM on May 24, 2007


eb, i've got a confession to make ... that essay was written by the postmodern generator ... all i did was cut and paste

i don't really mind your long posts ... if interesting, and they often are, i read them and if not, i just turn the mouse wheel ... and the last insult was just silly word play

as far as our last exchange ... well, i just had to drop it ... i was probably taking it too personally and didn't really want to break out the flamethrowers on someone who is basically a good guy

and amro, i dare your doggie to take a piece of this
posted by pyramid termite at 7:27 AM on May 24, 2007


Hah!
posted by OmieWise at 7:34 AM on May 24, 2007


A sphincter says what?
posted by Kwine at 7:36 AM on May 24, 2007


Most attempts I've seen take one aspect and amplify greatly while ignoring the other things that are characteristic.

Don't take it personally, man. Most people's Shatner impression is just a poor retake of their favorite bits of Kevin Pollack's bad impression. He gets FULL. STOP. PHRASING, you get volume and citation jokes.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:54 AM on May 24, 2007


Also, bidding is now open for the inclusion of a given image in the thread at or around comment 1000. Paypal, Visa, personal check all accepted.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:56 AM on May 24, 2007


bidding is now open for the inclusion of a given image in the thread at or around comment 1000. Paypal, Visa, personal check all accepted.

full bannination to follow!

[cortex, can I talk to you over here for a minute....?]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:59 AM on May 24, 2007


Oh, shit, that's never good.
posted by OmieWise at 8:07 AM on May 24, 2007


Mod Fight. "We are the mods, we are the mods..."
posted by OmieWise at 8:11 AM on May 24, 2007


Hold on, I thought when you sent me that IM you meant it like "also don't extort from the userbase lol", not "also don't extort form the userbase for serious d00d". Why'd I even take this square-ass gig?
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:44 AM on May 24, 2007


So I know that, like the Cabal, there is no extortion but just so I know exactly what the deal is not ... high-bidder gets to chose the image which will be attributed to cortex upon posting? Is that (not) how it works? Is there a (no) mimimum starting bid? Presumably, NSFW content is (not) encouraged?
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 9:53 AM on May 24, 2007


There isn't definitely a correlation between how much you don't send me in unmarked twenties and how generously those questions aren't answered. You shouldn't make me an offer, that much isn't clear.

ps jessamyn doesn't eat paint

posted by cortex (staff) at 10:09 AM on May 24, 2007


It's ok jessamyn, no one would send cortex money for something like that. We all know he is not a *real* mod like you and Matt.
posted by dios at 10:13 AM on May 24, 2007


There you go again, asserting the power of one branch of government over another.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 11:01 AM on May 24, 2007


There's a triparate in my pants and everyone's invited.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:07 AM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]




loltriumph
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:25 AM on May 24, 2007


"The Canadian hard-rock power trio Triumph stands out as a visionary, uniquely influential entity among their fellow brethren." Goddamn army. Goddamn army jeeps.
posted by OmieWise at 11:29 AM on May 24, 2007


Jeep! You're absolutely correct, just in time too since there's only one day left to answer.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 11:37 AM on May 24, 2007


I boarded an airplane on a recent trip to Boston and took my seat. As I settled in, I glanced up and saw the most beautiful woman boarding the plane. I soon realized she was heading straight towards my seat. As fate would have it, she took the seat right beside mine. Eager to strike up a conversation I blurted out, "Business trip or pleasure?" She turned, smiled and said, "Business. I'm going to the Annual Nymphomaniacs of America Convention in Boston." I swallowed hard. Here was the most gorgeous woman I had ever seen sitting next to me, and she was going to a meeting of... Nymphomaniacs. Struggling to maintain my composure, I calmly asked, "What's your business role at this convention?"

"Lecturer," she responded . "I use information that I have learned from my personal experiences to debunk some of the popular myths about sexuality." "Really?" I said. "And what kind of myths are there ?" "Well", she explained, "one popular myth is that African-American men are the most well-endowed of all men, when in fact it is the Native American Indian who is most likely to possess that trait. Another popular myth is that Frenchmen are the best lovers when actually it is men of Jewish descent who are the best. I have also discovered that the lover with absolutely the best stamina is the Southern Redneck." Suddenly, she became a little uncomfortable and blushed. "I'm sorry, she said, "I shouldn't really be discussing all of this with you. I don't even know your name." "Tonto," I said, "Tonto Goldstein, but my friends call me Bubba."
posted by mds35 at 12:20 PM on May 24, 2007 [4 favorites]


We can do it.
posted by languagehat at 12:43 PM on May 24, 2007


I know we can.
posted by languagehat at 12:44 PM on May 24, 2007


So, cortex, do you take American Express?
posted by languagehat at 12:44 PM on May 24, 2007


We can do it.

Wait. Do what?
posted by dersins at 12:47 PM on May 24, 2007


Is this something I'd have to know base 10 math to understand?
posted by dersins at 12:48 PM on May 24, 2007


Oh yeah, like you don't know, Mr. Round Number.
posted by OmieWise at 12:49 PM on May 24, 2007


This thread has grown up to be rather stunning.
posted by amro at 12:49 PM on May 24, 2007


The Canadian hard-rock power trio Triumph stands out as a visionary, uniquely influential entity among their fellow brethren.

I dunno. They always struck me as an atheist Canadian Stryper cover band.
posted by dw at 12:59 PM on May 24, 2007


grown up to be rather stunning.

Said he, running his hand through his silver hair while stepping out of his new mercedes. The matron of the family immediately decided that this would be his last invitation to their house.
posted by Firas at 1:00 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


If there really were an atheist Canadian Stryper cover band, that would be so awesome.
posted by dw at 1:01 PM on May 24, 2007




cortex isn't a real mod because mathowie hasn't started paying him in gift cards yet.
posted by dios at 1:19 PM on May 24, 2007


Just in giant donuts.
posted by dersins at 1:19 PM on May 24, 2007


.
posted by mds35 at 2:07 PM on May 24, 2007


Are you mourning giant donuts, mds35?
posted by dersins at 2:14 PM on May 24, 2007


No, posting pictures of tiny ones. Check the source, man.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:25 PM on May 24, 2007


Checking the source is for suckers.

Also, I would like to apologize for my (rightfully) deleted answer to this question.

Although it may have been technically correct for me to suggest that the "simplest and easiest" way for the asker to get herself "knocked up" would be for her to have vaginal intercourse without the use of birth control, I definitely phrased my answer in a snotty, unhelpful manner.

My apologies to whichever moderator was forced to take the time to delete my answer.
posted by dersins at 2:47 PM on May 24, 2007


[NOT SUCK-UP-IST]
posted by dersins at 2:48 PM on May 24, 2007


I was going to tell you to go make a MetaTalk post about it like everyone else, but then I realized that your comments here were edging us closer to the magic number.
posted by languagehat at 2:55 PM on May 24, 2007


Which is a good thing.
posted by languagehat at 2:55 PM on May 24, 2007


You rock!
posted by languagehat at 2:56 PM on May 24, 2007


Heh.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:59 PM on May 24, 2007


You rock!

You are far from the first to so tell me.

And far be it from me to disagree with such a distinguished personage.
posted by dersins at 3:00 PM on May 24, 2007


Oh, get a room.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:01 PM on May 24, 2007


Sorry, cortex, but you don't rock.
posted by languagehat at 3:09 PM on May 24, 2007


Get a room?
posted by dersins at 3:09 PM on May 24, 2007


Us?
posted by dersins at 3:09 PM on May 24, 2007


Good job, everyone. And a big round of applause to surprise silent-auction winner dhoyt, whose $193.45 bid secured this commemorative image!

a thousand, can you believe it?
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:09 PM on May 24, 2007


I rock, though.
posted by languagehat at 3:09 PM on May 24, 2007


Why?
posted by dersins at 3:10 PM on May 24, 2007


Shit!
posted by languagehat at 3:10 PM on May 24, 2007


You wasted #1000 on "Us?"
posted by languagehat at 3:10 PM on May 24, 2007


Bah.
posted by languagehat at 3:11 PM on May 24, 2007


oops i did it again
posted by dersins at 3:11 PM on May 24, 2007


I don't think you rock any more.
posted by languagehat at 3:12 PM on May 24, 2007


And neither do I, because I missed #1000.
posted by languagehat at 3:12 PM on May 24, 2007


You wasted #1000 on "Us?"

No, languagehat, I lavishly spent #1000 on us. And I expect some gratitude from you, dammit.
posted by dersins at 3:13 PM on May 24, 2007


WE ALL SUCK.
posted by languagehat at 3:13 PM on May 24, 2007


We'll never make 1,100.
posted by languagehat at 3:13 PM on May 24, 2007


Woo! I take it back—cortex rocks, and so does Dr. John S. Niles!
posted by languagehat at 3:14 PM on May 24, 2007


Uh, cortex, jessamyn wants to see you in her office.
posted by languagehat at 3:15 PM on May 24, 2007


OH FUX! THE IMG TAG!

/me turns up his security settings to their maximum levels
posted by dios at 3:16 PM on May 24, 2007


But she wasn't supposed to be back until Sunday!
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:17 PM on May 24, 2007


Wow. I'm glad I stuck around for the finale.

*clap..................clap..................clap*
posted by team lowkey at 3:18 PM on May 24, 2007


Does anything special happen at comment number 65,535? Or 4,294,967,295? Do the banscripts run amok? Do we all get to go home?
posted by hoverboards don't work on water at 3:19 PM on May 24, 2007


Oh, come on, the whole "IMG will hijack your computer" meme is just hokum. Just another phanton security issue dreamed up by

CORTEX RULZ MKAY?

RHODE ISLAND 4EVER
posted by dw at 3:20 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


At comment number 4,294,967,295 the universe collapses in on itself. That's why Matt had to shut off comments after 30 days.
posted by languagehat at 3:28 PM on May 24, 2007


Crawl under that desk, cortex, just crawl under that desk. Just be quiet, we've got a library going here.








Jesus christ I'm starting to sound like quonsar.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 3:31 PM on May 24, 2007


where's my music, OmieWise?
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 3:32 PM on May 24, 2007


Goddamn. I fucking go home and now there's images in the fucking thread! Crazy.

gnfti, next week, I swear. I'm good for it. This week was a bit strapped.
posted by OmieWise at 4:30 PM on May 24, 2007


np ow bbq
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 4:33 PM on May 24, 2007


Man, stupid neighbors turning off the internet and leaving me with intermittent access. I missed 1000 and things are never the same!

On the other hand, I was out by the dumpsters, in what we like to call the Arrowwood Freecycle (because Arrowwood is the co-op I live in), and I saw someone had thrown out a bunch of cassettes. Included in there was the Superbowl Shuffle cassingle, with the extended b-side in near factory condition (also a handful of like-new Redd Foxx and Richard Pryor tapes). I grabbed 'em with alacrity, and went over to tell my folks about the awesome score.

Turns out they were mine, from my basement, inherited from my grandmother.
posted by klangklangston at 5:41 PM on May 24, 2007


Damned digital age. Never again will there be a music medium as unabashedly awesome as the cassingle. I might name my next band Cassingle.
posted by team lowkey at 6:05 PM on May 24, 2007


I don't know, Cassingle sounds like more of an album title than a band name.

An AWESOME album title, but still...
posted by dersins at 7:21 PM on May 24, 2007


we shouldn't reveal who AR is. It's better for everyone.

I wasn't revealing anything. Except that I am Alex Reynolds. There. I said it.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:52 PM on May 24, 2007


cortex isn't a real mod because mathowie hasn't started paying him in gift cards yet.

I get paid partially in gift cards. They're one of the "perks" of working for a mega corporation and having your soul sucked out through a straw. You can then "purchase" things from the corporation for "free." Pretty much, I get to steal $30 worth of merchandise per month and the company pays itself for it.

It seems to me to be rather retarded. More than "rather," and actually really really retarded.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:58 PM on May 24, 2007


I'm the original Pickles McGilliguddy and I claim my dirty sock full of krugerrands.

I get paid partially in gift cards. They're one of the "perks" of working for a mega corporation and having your soul sucked out through a straw. You can then "purchase" things from the corporation for "free." Pretty much, I get to steal $30 worth of merchandise per month and the company pays itself for it.


They used to just give you an automatic $30 credit on your house account.

Uh, so I hear.

Do you guys still even get house accounts?
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 8:00 PM on May 24, 2007


I miss everything when I'm at work. Comment #1,000... seeing other humans in a non-retail environment... feeding my cat... watching the season finale of Lost...

That last one, I am going to remedy RIGHT NOW.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:01 PM on May 24, 2007


At my dayjob, one of the prized forms of official positive feedback is an award that is good for an entry into a drawing for a $10 gift card.

There's symbolic awards, and there's just plain insulting rewards.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:02 PM on May 24, 2007


Do you guys still even get house accounts?

What's that? Like an account, shaped like a house? These words, they sound like English, but I don't understand what they mean.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:03 PM on May 24, 2007


Okay, if you guys don't let me have comment #16000 I'm gonna be mighty peeved. And I'm telling you, you'd really rather not prefer it were I peeved.
posted by Kattullus at 8:04 PM on May 24, 2007


At my dayjob, one of the prized forms of official positive feedback is an award that is good for an entry into a drawing for a $10 gift card.


Ooooh! If we get more than 50% of our customers to sign up for our FREE FREQUENT BUYER CARD, Giant MegaCorp gives us a WHOLE $5 in store credit.

I think that's gone beyond insulting into a reward that is actually beneath me. Were I given a mere $5 in store credit to the store where HELLO, I AM EMPLOYED, I would wipe my butt with it.

And then use it to buy like, a pen or something.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:05 PM on May 24, 2007


What's that? Like an account, shaped like a house?

It was a magical interest free account that you could charge stuff to. Had a $300 limit, got a $30 credit applied to it every month. Tended to be a pain in the ass when people moved on or got moved on. This was back in the days before gift cards.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 8:19 PM on May 24, 2007


Come to think of it, though, it could be even worse. There's this sales firm where third prize in the monthly sales competition was you're fired.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:19 PM on May 24, 2007


Kattullus, if one were to prefer it when you're peeved is that indicative of a desire to be spanked?
posted by psmith at 8:30 PM on May 24, 2007


I got $500 for being employee of the year.

For the life of me, I can't remember what I spent it on. I think I paid bills and bought beer.
posted by dw at 8:31 PM on May 24, 2007


They're one of the "perks" of working for a mega corporation and having your soul sucked out through a straw.

Oh puleeeze. Come work for a university sometime. Straws are too big; they use a catheter attached to a rusty needle.
posted by dw at 8:32 PM on May 24, 2007


Really, the reason they do it that way is because state schools get jack from state governments to do anything. Stupid part time legislatures think that $20,000 must be a living wage in a town where the average home costs $450,000.
posted by dw at 8:34 PM on May 24, 2007


if i blow my nose all over the fried chicken at country buffet, is that vegan terrorism?
posted by pyramid termite at 9:08 PM on May 24, 2007


Kattypuss, you're still here? Fuck, man, we get it. You have the coolest user number. A user number that changes all the rules. WE DON'T FUCKING CARE! I swear to all that is holy, if we come anywhere near 16000, I'll languagehat the last few thousand comments MYSELF just to make SURE you don't get the satisfaction of rubbing that goddamned user number in our faces one more time. I will fucking DOS the fuck out of this motherfucker, and tell everyone that you're to blame.

No... you know what? I'm going to make it my life's work to get your ass banned. We'll see how interesting you are when you have to come back as user number 54913. Not quite the same cachet, huh? I'm going to use whatever vacation time and savings I have to get to the Portland meet-up, and when I have the ear of Caesar and the whole motherloveboning triumvirate; all they are going to hear about are the venomous things that Kattullus has said about them. The fattitude. The banimosity. The pooplicitousness. All of it. You've kicked your last puppy, toothfucker. I shit on your shit!
posted by team lowkey at 11:15 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Huh. User links in preview don't use the number, they use the name. That's weird.
posted by team lowkey at 11:17 PM on May 24, 2007


Ooooh, pooplicitousness. Not a term I would use to describe Kattullus, but a term I like nonetheless.

POOPLICITOUSNESS.

I also like the use of "languagehat" as a verb. Good show!
posted by grapefruitmoon at 12:20 AM on May 25, 2007


Ooooh, pooplicitousness. Not a term I would use to describe Kattullus, but a term I like nonetheless.

I agree. It's craptastic.
posted by amro at 4:57 AM on May 25, 2007


I went away for a while and when I came back, even "Damn I missed it!" comments were old and busted.

Damn, I missed it.
posted by anotherpanacea at 7:05 AM on May 25, 2007


needs more <center> tag

posted by and hosted from Uranus at 7:09 AM on May 25, 2007


Nearly 3 hours since the last comment?

I gotta have more cowbellcomments, baby.
posted by dw at 10:01 AM on May 25, 2007


1050 ways to leave your lover.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:03 AM on May 25, 2007


It's my fault isn't it? I'm sorry everybody hates me.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 10:38 AM on May 25, 2007


I don't care if Monday's blue, Tuesday's grey and Wednesday too, Thursday I don't care about you, it's Friday I'VE NO PANTS.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 11:26 AM on May 25, 2007


Peach pit in pie.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:46 AM on May 25, 2007


Dinosaur Jr's "Just Like Heaven" bestrides all Cure covers like a colossus of yore.
posted by dw at 11:47 AM on May 25, 2007


Question 14.7


a) team lowkey is to _________

i) fluffy kittens
ii) fluffy puppies
iii) fluffy penguins
iv) fluffy hippopotamus...ses
v) fluffy certified public accountants

what Jeffrey Dahmer is to __________

i) your mom.
ii) his mom, Brian B.
iii) Vladimir and Estragon.
iv) fluffy certified pubic accountants.
v) the wombatpeople of Lemuria.
posted by Kattullus at 11:48 AM on May 25, 2007


Is there any kosher popcorn left?
posted by languagehat at 1:29 PM on May 25, 2007


And how about the kosher cop porn?
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:32 PM on May 25, 2007


Damn! White jeans + coffee = oh noez!! :(
posted by Firas at 1:35 PM on May 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


When I say “pop” thou shalt not say “corn”.
When I say “cop” thou shalt not say “porn”.
posted by languagehat at 2:12 PM on May 25, 2007


well, you gotta have a mother for me
posted by pyramid termite at 8:54 PM on May 25, 2007


When I was a little kid, there were two words I always mis-said. One of them was strawberries, for some reason I always called them "gobbies." The other was popcorn.

It would be very hard to explain to a four year old why the word "pockyporn" does not mean what she thinks it means.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 9:01 PM on May 25, 2007


you know you can't boogie now but your sister sure will

hey, hey, pocky porn ...
posted by pyramid termite at 10:19 PM on May 25, 2007




NEEDS MORE COMMENTS

Do I have to remind everyone that Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews?
posted by languagehat at 7:26 AM on May 26, 2007


I'm shocked that, unless I missed it, no one busted out the old "omg Arabic is a Semitic language too, you know. People who say anti-Semitic in contexts like this thread, when they really mean anti-Judaic (1) are part of or victim to the j00 conspiracy and (2) smell like a vagina made of rotting wet burlap.

There were moments in this thread when I was anticipating that from certain people at any moment.
posted by psmith at 8:56 AM on May 26, 2007


Yeah, murdering non-Jews is just fine, just don't eat any bacon while you're doing it. Or shellfish. And be sure to wear your yarmulke.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:16 AM on May 26, 2007


[NOT BACONIST]
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:17 AM on May 26, 2007


[ACTUALLY, YES I AM. I AM BACONIST. I FREAKING LOVE BACON. G-DDAMNIT, I AM GOING STRAIGHT TO HELL. ONLY, JEWS DON'T BELIEVE IN HELL. WELL, I'M SURE I'LL BE PUNISHED FOR IT SOMEHOW.]
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:18 AM on May 26, 2007


You might end up in Sheol, a place once described to me by a Religious Studies professor with the phrase "just think of New Jersey."
posted by psmith at 2:48 PM on May 26, 2007 [1 favorite]


1069 comments, that seems like a good number to end on...

...crap! I ruined it!
posted by Kattullus at 6:15 PM on May 26, 2007


Ok, so I've read this thread and I conclude that MetaFilter is just like life: some people are douchebags, and some people are willing to try to understand douchebags, and some people are nice to hang out with, and all these classes intersect in interesting ways.
posted by RussHy at 7:14 AM on May 27, 2007


I'm sorry, RussHy, but MetaFilter: Just like life doesn't make a very good tagline. Please try harder next time.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 1:54 PM on May 27, 2007


"Do I have to remind everyone that Jews believe is it ok to murder non-Jews?"

Doesn't everyone believe it's OK to murder non-Jews? I mean, isn't that the only reason to become a Jew?
posted by klangklangston at 3:29 PM on May 27, 2007


I mean, isn't that the only reason to become a Jew?

If you're a fussy eater who dislikes bacon, shrimp and jello, Judaism is a godsend!
posted by Kattullus at 3:39 PM on May 27, 2007


You guys are getting awfully close to being on topic.

Perilously close.

Need I remind you this thread NEEDS MORE COMMENTS?
posted by grapefruitmoon at 5:05 PM on May 27, 2007


I saw Regis Philbin spit on a disabled kid one time.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:16 PM on May 27, 2007


MetaFilter: Please try harder next time.
posted by dw at 5:49 PM on May 27, 2007


WHO
posted by Kattullus at 6:27 PM on May 27, 2007


WANTS
posted by Kattullus at 6:27 PM on May 27, 2007


TO
posted by Kattullus at 6:27 PM on May 27, 2007


RACE
posted by Kattullus at 6:28 PM on May 27, 2007


ME
posted by Kattullus at 6:28 PM on May 27, 2007


TO 2000?
posted by Kattullus at 6:30 PM on May 27, 2007


I want to party like it's 1999.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:31 PM on May 27, 2007


1999 was a very good year.
posted by psmith at 6:44 PM on May 27, 2007


Whoah. You guys live in Providence? I used to live on Brook Street across from Louis. Is that place still there?
posted by psmith at 6:48 PM on May 27, 2007


1999 was the year I graduated high school. So, for me, partying like it's 1999 would mean dancing awkwardly and bemoaning how lame my life was.

Not much has changed.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:54 PM on May 27, 2007


psmith: Yep. That place is still there.

Stalkers may like to note that we live on the other side of town - in the Armory district.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:55 PM on May 27, 2007


That's good to hear. A couple years ago I heard they wanted to tear it down for some sort of student center.

Now is where I admit that in truth I'm indifferent to 1999. I was just thinking of Sinatra.
posted by psmith at 7:01 PM on May 27, 2007


so close to 1100.
posted by psmith at 7:25 PM on May 27, 2007


I've never been to Providence.
posted by dw at 7:40 PM on May 27, 2007


Boston I've been to. Twice. Once while driving. (Never again.)
posted by dw at 7:41 PM on May 27, 2007


After the last Boston trip, I caught bronchitis. Knocked me out for over a week.
posted by dw at 7:42 PM on May 27, 2007


Delaware I have been to. For four hours. For a wedding. We saw the church and I-95. Drove back to Philly that evening and got water ice.
posted by dw at 7:43 PM on May 27, 2007


Being a Midwestern kid, I think that everything from Bangor to Norfolk is just like NYC. I know it's not, but I imagine that Providence is nothing but rude cabdrivers, Barney Miller, and Hill Street Blues. And Jews.
posted by dw at 7:45 PM on May 27, 2007


We had Jews in Tulsa. In fact, we had conservative and reform congregations and the largest museum of Jewish ephemera in the Southwest. But they were still foreign to us. Like non-churchgoers.
posted by dw at 7:46 PM on May 27, 2007


See, in Tulsa, church was more a social obligation than belief. Sure, tons of pentecostals and fundies and charismatics, but it's also the home to the largest Unitarian church in the world. Belonging to the right church, when I was a kid, was far more important than believing. God help you if you weren't a Methodist or a Presbyterian.
posted by dw at 7:48 PM on May 27, 2007


But Jews, they were just a curiosity. Like the Armenians. Tulsa has a small Armenian community, too. In fact, growing up I knew as many Jews as Armenians -- two. And then there was Julia Wolov.
posted by dw at 7:50 PM on May 27, 2007


For most of high school, she sat behind me alphabetically. Every day, she'd greet me the same way. "Hey horny." Which was weird, because it took me until deep in college to understand what girls even were. What I didn't know, you see, is that some people think that that sort of thing is funny. And a few years later, I discovered she turned our entendre-laden conversations into, well, a career.
posted by dw at 7:52 PM on May 27, 2007


That career is the Dana and Julia Show.
posted by dw at 7:53 PM on May 27, 2007


"Hey horny" is now extended into a stage show that started with her Chicago improv classes and now camps out in LA. Along the way, she had a promotional deal with Adam Sandler that yielded little (other than a role in one of those Deuce Bigalow movies) and appeared in a Snickers commercial.
posted by dw at 7:56 PM on May 27, 2007


And, in the end, it's left me perplexed. I never thought in high school she was all that funny. I mean, she was popular -- elected class president, hung with the popular clique. And she was pretty good looking. Why be funny when you're popular and pretty? And the sex talk, well, it always felt like I was the straight man in Nudge Nudge waiting for the punchline.
posted by dw at 7:58 PM on May 27, 2007


dw: Drove back to Philly that evening and got water ice.

I'm still not sure if these are your prose, but I want to know if it was lemon water ice or not.
posted by psmith at 7:59 PM on May 27, 2007


And, well, I think I'm funnier. I really do. I was funny in high school. It was my defense mechanism. And I try to be funny on MeFi, maybe still because I'm trying to be defensive, maybe because I'm still trying too hard to be liked by people who probably don't care if I exist.
posted by dw at 8:00 PM on May 27, 2007


Why is she famous among thousands while I scratch out this existence as a middle class web producer in a West Coast city and try to be a cool kid in a land where the cool kids are routinely smacked down? (Why do I even try?)
posted by dw at 8:02 PM on May 27, 2007


It finally hit me, recently. Three reasons.

1. Sex is funny. There's no question of that.

2. Being Jewish is funny. I think it's because they're outsiders in a land of millions of goyim. They can pick at our flaws, and it's funny.

3. Being Jewish and talking about sex? Killer.
posted by dw at 8:04 PM on May 27, 2007


And in the end, even if somehow concoct my Infinite Jest of a comment on here, it will still never be as funny as anything she does on a weekend night in front of a couple hundred Angelenos. Female, Jewish, bisexual making dick jokes always beats male, Presbyterian, hetero riffing on the zeitgeist.

It's not anti-Semitism. It's just true. I can't ever be as funny as her. Even if I really am horny.

It's This MeFi Life. I'm dw.
posted by dw at 8:08 PM on May 27, 2007


(PS to psmith: Cherry.)
posted by dw at 8:09 PM on May 27, 2007


(And damnit, where was that story when I went to do Fray at SXSW this year?)
posted by dw at 8:10 PM on May 27, 2007


Providence has more Catholics than Jews, but that hasn't stopped me from seeing hordes of Hassidic Jews wandering around the East Side, looking hopelessly out of place. The fact that my side of town doesn't even bother to put most of the signage in English whereas the East Side has an entire Kosher section in the 24 hour supermarket boggles my mind.

So, I suppose it's not too far off from New York. A lot fewer cabs though.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:20 PM on May 27, 2007


dw, I still don't know if this is some in-joke I'm missing, some fiction you're concocting, or something real. But next time you can get water ice I'd recommend lemon.

And the best parts of Infinite Jest are where Wallace totally rips off his betters. Like, e.g., PG Wodehouse (yes, I know that's not a sentence). Although I don't deny he's a good writer he's also a total wanktard who is out of his league when anything serious goes down.

I would say other non-snarky things but I'm honestly vexed by your comments.
posted by psmith at 8:21 PM on May 27, 2007


(and don't even get me started on cheesesteak theory)
posted by psmith at 8:22 PM on May 27, 2007


About 2/3 through Infinite Jest I thought to myself: "Why on Earth am I reading this, I think it's terrible?" So I laid it down and never picked it up again. Maybe one of these days I'll finish it, but I don't see it happening soon.
posted by Kattullus at 8:34 PM on May 27, 2007


psmith:

1. It's all true. Except I didn't get water ice the night of the wedding, but it made the story flow a little better. But other than that, it's all true.

2. I just felt compelled to attempt to tell a SOC story in comment form, and at the bottom of a long, rambling thread seemed to be the safest place to experiment.

2. I agree on Wallace; he and Eggers to me are the most overhyped novelists of my generation. My point was related to the primary plot point of the Entertainment.

3. Talk to my wife about cheesesteak theory; she's the one with the Penn degree. I settled for a western state school well known for its high concentration of trustafarians, so I can tell you all about bongwater or how to talk someone down who got bad acid. And the right way to prepare BBQ.
posted by dw at 8:41 PM on May 27, 2007


I finished Inifinite Jest thinking Wallace was an over-rated tool, but somehow I did finish it. The only book I can recall ever putting down and saying "this sucks and I can't finish it" was A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, which to this day I maintain is the worst pile of self-indulgent badly written shit ever committed to paper. ( i mean, not that anyone gives a shit what i think but since we're sharing)

I'm pretty easy to please, so this reaction is weird for me.
posted by psmith at 8:43 PM on May 27, 2007


Um. dw, I just saw your comment from 11:41 above. I don't know what to say except it's pretty awesome we both brought up Eggers independently.

Also, in that case your comments were pretty awesome.

I just bought a grill today (gas .. sorry) and would love to hear about bbq.
posted by psmith at 8:57 PM on May 27, 2007


I was fondling gas grills myself today at Home Depot.

But let's be clear about something: If it has a metal grate, it's a grill, not a BBQ.

BBQ is all about rub, smoke, and sauce. On the sauce, I got in an argument with Alton Brown at a book signing over sauce. Yellow sauce is of the devil. He disagreed. Fool.
posted by dw at 10:31 PM on May 27, 2007


Wait, no, it was Julia Wolov who spit on that retarded kid.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:36 PM on May 27, 2007


No, no, no. It was David Foster Wallace who spit on the retarded kid. Except that the retarded kid was crippled, it wasn't a kid, and it wasn't spit, but a different bodily fluid. Wolov tells the story as if she did it, even though she couldn't possibly jerk-off onto Stephen Hawking and everyone knows it.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:55 PM on May 27, 2007


Take a look at this photo of a perfectly groomed show poodle and tell me it doesn't look like a the head of a dog coming out of someone's anus.
posted by Kattullus at 10:55 PM on May 27, 2007


Not just someone's anus, but most likely the Abominable Snowman's anus. I should know, because I partied with the guy back in the day and after a few margaritas and some poppers, you'd be amazed at what would come out of Snowy's ass.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:00 PM on May 27, 2007


dogse.cx? yetise.cx?
posted by Rock Steady at 4:54 AM on May 28, 2007


I hereby concede the grill/bbq point to dw.
posted by psmith at 9:33 AM on May 28, 2007


So, I suppose it's not too far off from New York.

I've been in New York and I've been in Providence, and yeah, it's pretty far off. [NOT MANHATTANIST]

And now I'm hungry for barbecue. (Carolina style, since you ask.)
posted by languagehat at 2:29 PM on May 28, 2007


And now I'm hungry for barbecue.

So am I. And I live in Seattle. Sigh.

Yes, yes, OK Corral, Pecos Pit, blah blah blah... but still, nothing like a KJV-quoting black man selling you a $8 plate of ribs and white bread with vinegar sauce. This town is too areligious, vegetarian, and white. [NOT VEGETARIANIST]

OTOH, plenty of banh mi places.
posted by dw at 3:32 PM on May 28, 2007


Have I told you guys my David Fuckin' Wallace story yet?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 3:45 PM on May 28, 2007


Yes you have, a few months ago.

(Still jealous though.)

Anyway.

The patron saint of the longboat is a hasbian. Discuss.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 4:08 PM on May 28, 2007


Let's play Madlibs!

I am so sorry that ____ got ____ ______ ___ _____ stuck in his ____. Those frickin __'_ ____ will get you sometimes.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 4:52 PM on May 28, 2007


That is a great story, jessamyn. It's always nice when professors remember you after an extended period of time, even nicer when they are bigwigs with (seemingly) better things to occupy their thoughts.

gnfti, let's do Match Game instead!

Dumb Dora was so dumb that instead of making the bed, she BLANKED it.
posted by Rock Steady at 5:47 PM on May 28, 2007


Gene, I gotta with "up the butt."
posted by dw at 7:35 PM on May 28, 2007


er, gotta GO with. ruined the joke *sigh*
posted by dw at 7:36 PM on May 28, 2007


The patron saint of the longboat is a hasbian. Discuss.

At least we know the longboat can sail both ways.
posted by dw at 7:37 PM on May 28, 2007


last.fm stalking is fun.
posted by dw at 7:48 PM on May 28, 2007


I had the same experience with Infinite Jest as Kattullus. Funny that.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:26 PM on May 28, 2007


At least we know the longboat can sail both ways.

Sugar, the longboat sails any way it wants.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:27 PM on May 28, 2007


I had the same experience with Infinite Jest as Kattullus.

Me too. I suspect that dropping that book somewhere in the middle is not an uncommon occurence.

I really liked A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, though.
posted by amro at 2:53 AM on May 29, 2007


Next, you should try read Pride and Prejudice as Kattullus.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:31 AM on May 29, 2007


Hey. I was away for the weekend. What's shaking?

I hated Infinite Jest so much that it makes me irrationally angry. I think it's because by rights it should have been the book I loved, and in not loving it, it tore the veil from the self-indulgent crap that I had previously invested too much in. Or something.1

1. Boring, inane and useless endnote that does nothing but bludgeon the reader with my own assumed erudition while disrupting the experience of reading in a fascistic attempt at authorial control. Oh how I hates them.
posted by OmieWise at 6:48 AM on May 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


I liked every damned inch of it. Suck approximately three quarters of the volume of which it should actually have consisted, haters.

Seriously, you fuckers who read a bunch of it but not all of it and then stopped have no gorram idea what the experience of actually reading enthusiastically up to the great big Fuck You of a drop-off-a-cliff ending was like. The book was between 200 and 500 pages too short, depending on how tightly DFW could have written the ending if he'd felt like, you know, WRITING A FUCKING ENDING YOU SON OF A BITCH.

Which is a lovely exercise in meta-narrative, yes, yes, and plays nicely against the theme of the eponymous film vis-a-vis the enraptured reader, but that's all just post hoc bullshit because THE BOOK SHOULD HAVE BEEN LONGER GODDAMMIT.

I need to go lie down for a bit.

posted by cortex (staff) at 6:55 AM on May 29, 2007


Yeah, I know you like the book, cortex. I've got other friends who really love it too.

I realize this is a strange position, but part of what makes me dislike it so is that I really do like complex and convoluted novels. I like books that take effort to understand and to finish. I like books that make me think about not only the plot, but about language, about reading, about writing, about structure. I really get off on that stuff. I'll defend Ulysses from any little Dale Peck peckerwoods who care to come along, and I don't really hit my stride with Beckett until The Unnameable. So, in that regard, Infinite Jest feels a bit like a failure of reading to me, since I do know so many people who read it and loved it. But, there is another part of me, the part where a healthy self-regard perhaps gets in the way of a balanced "to each their own" approach to life, where I dismiss a book like that, written, essentially, with readers like me as the ideal reader, as very poorly done if I couldn't get more than 500 pages in in two tries.
posted by OmieWise at 7:34 AM on May 29, 2007


no u
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:38 AM on May 29, 2007


Hey, I was being sincere, you fucker.

God, you DFW wankers are so fucking uptight!

u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u
posted by OmieWise at 7:40 AM on May 29, 2007


Kavalier and Clay, while being shorter, also lost me in the third act. Half YAWN another miserable gay guy in pre-gay friendly America, half WTF is this Antarctica section in there for?

On the former, I'm getting tired of the "Did you know it was miserable for blacks/women/gays in America before MLK/Steinem/Love, Syndey?" motif. Especially when it's being used the way I use a sledgehammer. Bluntly, and poorly.
posted by dw at 7:50 AM on May 29, 2007


DFW hate! Now we're talkin'!
posted by languagehat at 7:52 AM on May 29, 2007


I heard DFW thinks it's OK to murder non-Jews.
posted by languagehat at 7:53 AM on May 29, 2007


There's no need for DFW hate. It's nice here. You should come visit. I'll make sure you have a good time!
posted by dios at 8:09 AM on May 29, 2007


Heh. Actually, the last time I was in DFW I rather enjoyed the two-hour layover, checking out the view from various windows and sampling the food on offer. The BBQ place was closed, though, which pissed me off.
posted by languagehat at 8:11 AM on May 29, 2007


Talking about the airport, in case that wasn't obvious. I'm sure there's more than one BBQ place in the city.
posted by languagehat at 8:12 AM on May 29, 2007


They named an airport after David Foster Wallace?
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:30 AM on May 29, 2007


1492
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 8:35 AM on May 29, 2007


We're not nearly to the new world.
posted by OmieWise at 9:16 AM on May 29, 2007


I hate DFW the airport. It's better now that the TrAAin is deAAd and they opened Terminal D, but still, it looks and feels and wears as old as it is. Plus, there's the whole landing in Wichita Falls and taxing to the gate for 3 days thing.

And last time I was in Terminal D, I couldn't get service at the Irish pub place, despite sitting there for 15 minutes and just about dancing on the table.
posted by dw at 9:24 AM on May 29, 2007


I couldn't get past page 10 of Infinite Jest. I luurved Kavalier and Clay. Chabon is a good writer and, unlike Wallace, every goddam sentence isn't Look at me, look at me! I'm so fucking clever! I'm a good writer! Look! Look! Here's a witty and erudite turn of phrase! And another one! I bet you're really impressed, aren't you? self-infatuated bullshit.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:34 AM on May 29, 2007


But witty, clever, erudite self-infatuated bullshit can be really fun!
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:37 AM on May 29, 2007


For example, this is comment 1155 in metatalk thread 14194.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:42 AM on May 29, 2007


Also: footnotr!
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:44 AM on May 29, 2007


But witty, clever, erudite self-infatuated bullshit can be really fun!

Well, yeah. But a novel of this from start to finish? Seriously, I don't understand how people can tolerate—much less enjoy—writing that calls attention to itself so relentlessly. It's characteristic of much contemporary American literature, unfortunately.

To my mind, good art is never ostentatious in this way. The witty, clever, erudite and brilliantly insightful stuff is best understated, not presented with elaborate flourishes and the ringing of trumpets1.

Cleverness, especially, is so smug and off-putting that to be successful, really clever writing has to sneak up on the reader and tap him on the shoulder, not bludgeon him in the face.

While I'm griping about contemporary American literature, I'll say it has the same problem with "political statements". To be persuasive and not obnoxious, a book's political message needs to work its way into the reader's subconscious without the reader being aware of it. When it is text and not subtext and didactic and not insidious then it's either incredibly distracting or an invitation to some mutual dick-sucking. Either way, everything else suffers for it.

1. Unless it's ironic
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:00 AM on May 29, 2007


It's a reasonable argument, EB, and I think I understand where you're coming from even if I don't have the same reaction to Wallace's writing. I've written at length on the subject previously, so rather than rehash all that I'll just link to a prior rebuttal, here.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:08 AM on May 29, 2007


Oh, I agree Chabon is a much better writer than DFknW. I just didn't like Kavalier and Clay. "Oh look, there's the gay protagonist. I bet he's going to have a really miserable 500 pages with maybe some redemption at the end." And then came Antarctica.

I did like Wonder Boys the movie, but how much was Chabon and how much was Hanson?

I need to get into his other stuff, but sadly I only read what, six books a year now? (Just finished Seth Godin's The Dip. Insightful, quick read.)
posted by dw at 10:48 AM on May 29, 2007


I fell in love with Chabon reading his recent serial in the NY Times Sunday Magazine about adventures in Khazaria a thousand years or so ago. That guy is a born writer, and now I really want to read his new book about an alternate Alaska where Yiddish was spoken. And say, those Khazars were some tough Jews! They had no problem with murdering non-Jews!

Just so you know, I was strongly tempted to leave the small tag unclosed as a protest against the diminishing number of comments in this thread. But I held off. Because I believe.
posted by languagehat at 11:25 AM on May 29, 2007


I want to believe.
posted by amro at 11:31 AM on May 29, 2007


Believe!
posted by amro at 11:32 AM on May 29, 2007


I believe!
posted by amro at 11:33 AM on May 29, 2007


"Believe" is one of those words that starts to look really weird if you look at it long enough.
posted by amro at 11:36 AM on May 29, 2007


Yeah, I love Chabon, and I was going to hold off on the new novel, but the NYRB review is stellar and makes me want to read it. I may cave and buy it.

Funnily, because I hate baseball, the thing that really made me fall in love with Chabon was his kids book, Summerland, which I listened to several years ago on cd while I was commuting. I still remember the week it took to get through it as a magical time, suffused with summer and the kind of longing, for all kinds of undefined things, which a good story can bring. I don't go for too many YA books these days, in my dotage (I'm 36 years-old for Christ's sake, which is three more than he could apparently claim), but I thought it held up well.
posted by OmieWise at 11:36 AM on May 29, 2007


Yeah, Summerland is by far my favorite Chabon book. K&C is OK, but Summerland is really magical.

DFW and Eggers, though, can both suck it.
posted by dersins at 11:39 AM on May 29, 2007




I want to relieve.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 11:45 AM on May 29, 2007


Believe.
posted by OmieWise at 11:46 AM on May 29, 2007


the thing that really made me fall in love with Chabon was his kids book, Summerland

Yeah, but it doesn't have nearly as many end-notes as Wallace's Timothy Goes To Tennis Camp.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:51 AM on May 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


Oh, ice burn.
posted by OmieWise at 11:54 AM on May 29, 2007


Yeah, but it doesn't have nearly as many end-notes as Wallace's Timothy Goes To Tennis Camp.

No such book. I believe you're referring to DFW's novelization of Ernest Goes To Camp. Specifically, the 35-page footnote questioning whether Vern was a delusion of Ernest's head brought on by overconsumption of milk products66 and whether this implies that the brownian motion is responsible for creating within him a self-manifested version of Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle and doesn't this all remind us of something deeper and here's my grocery list from last weekend.67

67Chicken pieces are so much cheaper at the Asian market than at Safeway.
posted by dw at 12:09 PM on May 29, 2007


Also, why is it we pile on Wallace for his footnotes yet give Susanna Clarke a pass on hers?
posted by dw at 12:12 PM on May 29, 2007


Because Susanna Clarke's problems as a writer are deeper and more structural than Wallace's?

Heeeey! Seriously, I'm not a hater.
posted by Kattullus at 2:47 PM on May 29, 2007


Ya gotta believe!
posted by languagehat at 3:40 PM on May 29, 2007


I have read exactly one book with serious footnotes that hasn't been twee, fey, distracting, precious and annoying: Seeing Voices by Oliver Sacks [JEW]. I would forgive him anything.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 3:53 PM on May 29, 2007


I gotta believe!
posted by team lowkey at 3:55 PM on May 29, 2007


Yeah, I could forgive Oliver Sacks anything too. Hell, he could break into my house, squat on my sofa and lay a doodie and my reaction would be "ZOMG! Oliver Sacks came to my house!" Oliver Sacks is the bomb diggity, yo (and I don't employ the bd,y lightly)
posted by Kattullus at 4:05 PM on May 29, 2007


And oh alright, I'll join in.
posted by Kattullus at 4:07 PM on May 29, 2007


he could break into my house, squat on my sofa and lay a doodie

Claiming that he did that might be a good way to become a chapter in his next book.
posted by amro at 4:30 PM on May 29, 2007


(I'm trying to think of a clever Sacks-esque chapter title that includes the word "doodie.")
posted by amro at 4:40 PM on May 29, 2007


You gotta!

I'm trying to think of a clever Sacks-esque chapter title

"The Man Who Mistook His Wife for Me Breaking Into his House, Squatting on his Sofa and Laying a Doodie"
posted by cortex (staff) at 4:46 PM on May 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


What's that I see in the distance?
posted by languagehat at 5:05 PM on May 29, 2007


Why, it's another round number, comin' up fast on the starboard quarter!
posted by languagehat at 5:06 PM on May 29, 2007


DOUBLE ZERO AHOY!
posted by languagehat at 5:06 PM on May 29, 2007


Man the longboats!
posted by languagehat at 5:06 PM on May 29, 2007


As we all know, it's only triple zero numbers that are worthy of interest.

stop hitting me! stop hitting me!
posted by Kattullus at 5:15 PM on May 29, 2007


lan·guage·hat [lang-gwij-hat]
-verb
1. To make several short comments
in quick succession in an attempt to
reach a comment number which is
a multiple of 100.
[Origin: 8001000]
posted by team lowkey at 5:16 PM on May 29, 2007


DOUBLE ZERO AHOY!

Meh. Once you've snagged a triple zero, double zeros just seem so, well, meh.
posted by dersins at 5:35 PM on May 29, 2007


Seeing Voices is excellent. My aunt Judy is deaf and I've been trying, in vain, for several years to get my mother and my other (maternal) aunt to read that book.

I wish that my grandmother had been able to read it. It would have been difficult for her, though, because she allowed herself to be convinced by her doctor to send Judy to a speaking-only school in Oklahoma. They beat her viciously for signing. Eventually, my grandmother changed her mind and retrieved Judy from that school and put her in the New Mexico School for the Deaf, in Santa Fe, which has always used Sign. But damage had already been done to their relationship and my aunt never forgave my grandmother.

Indeed, I'd love to be able to talk about the book and the issues it raises with Judy—but when I've brought stuff up she responds to me as if I couldn't possibly know anything about deafness and Deaf culture. This is because she has always lived two lives, and her life in the Deaf world and her life with her family and in the hearing world don't much intersect. The only person in my family to learn ASL is that youngest aunt. Judy is the oldest of the three and my mother a couple years younger. My mother is frighteningly fluent with finger-spelling—she and Judy communicated well in that fashion and my mother and her were extremely close as young children. I'm not sure if Judy is resentful that my mom didn't learn ASL. The youngest sister, Jennifer (who is only six years older than me and like an older sister to me) did learn Sign. But my grandparents didn't. They didn't even fingerspell.

My aunt is able to hear somewhat with hearing aids. She functions well in the hearing world. But she's also active in the Deaf community—she knows most of the most prominent people. She's friends with Marlee Matlin, for example. It's a smaller world than you might think.

But because she does hear a little with hearing aids, she's not totally accepted into Deaf culture (not that she's told me this). And, of course, she's not really accepted into hearing culture, either. I'd love to be able to talk to her about this, but I think there are too many walls. I would have loved to talk to her about the recent stuff at Galludet—especially because this time around, she might not have been sympathetic to the students. (The previous tussle was when the regents appointed a hearing president. This tussle was because the students didn't feel the new president was deaf enough—a charge that I don't doubt my aunt is sensitive to.)

She has a Master's in Business Admin but her written English skills aren't great. As Sacks discusses in the book, the fact that she didn't acquire language until five or six probably created a permanent language deficit. Most people think this is simply something that is directly related to being deaf—my mother thought this until I explained Sacks's overview of the history of deaf education and the many examples of fluent written English skill from the "golden age" of deaf education.

Anyway, I love Oliver Sacks and have read most of his books. I saw him speak once, too. He's charming and Robin Williams nailed him in his portrayal of him in Awakenings. And being that I have a personal interest in the mater, I found that Seeing Voices just blew me away. More's the pity that I can't get anyone in my family to read it.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 5:53 PM on May 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


I have nothing to say about David Foster Wallace, or footnotes.

I just saw the longboat signal in the distance.

As you were.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:16 PM on May 29, 2007


On the subject of Yiddish Policemen's union... well I kind of hated it (and I lurrvvd Kavalier and Clay). I thought the main character, and most of the ancillary characters, were well drawn, that the mystery was interesting enough for me to read it in two days and that, without considering what he was aiming for, his writing was excellent. But, I had some major issues. Y'all better read it soon so I can tell you why you're wrong to like it :)
posted by Kattullus at 8:20 PM on May 29, 2007


Oliver Sacks is the man.
posted by psmith at 8:52 PM on May 29, 2007


Sad, but I've never read Oliver Sacks.

Douglas Adams did sign my copy of Mostly Harmless, and a post-it note for a friend.
posted by dw at 9:09 PM on May 29, 2007


If you could get your friend to scan the post-it note, that would pretty much be the most awesomest thing since Douglas Adams went: "Silfood Barbleblix, no no no... Blaphod Gargleblast... no that's not it either... though I like the sound of Gargleblast, I'll save that up for later... hmm... Broccoli Kumquat, no that's right out... Zoomzoom Bloombloombrox... nope! Wait! I've got it! Zaphod Beeblebrox! Ee's just dis guy y'know... perfect!"
posted by Kattullus at 9:34 PM on May 29, 2007


Speaking of excellent things I've seen, I saw Douglas Adams do a reading at the University of Washignton. While that was awesome enough, he was also doing it with an ASL translator which was freaking great! I would totally lose myself trying to figure out how she was going to say the names and places that he was going to be coming up with next. It was fingerspelling a'flying and a lot of funny ASL names for funny Douglas Adams names. People gave her a standing ovation when he was done, I swear he nearly killed her.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 9:52 PM on May 29, 2007


Aren't ASL translators of live events much more rare than signed English translators? Just curious.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:24 PM on May 29, 2007


Unfortunately, I haven't seen him since... 1995?

What happened was that Douglas Adams was going to do a reading at the Boulder Bookstore. I don't remember if I found out, but I asked Lewis if he wanted to come. "Oh man, I have to work, but you think you can get him to sign something for me?" I figured hey, why not. I took a card with a post-it note saying Lewis is a huge fan but has to work please sign this card blah blah blah.

So DNA does his two readings (Last Chance To See, Mostly Harmless) in front of oh, 200+ college kids on the second floor. Once he was done, it was time to sign. I think I was pretty early up, and he signed my book, but it was pretty clear he was just exhausted. He had that look that Brits get when too much travel in America finally starts to succumb to their desire for a pint and a pie and a quick ticket back to the UK.

But I was a 19 year old college student overloaded on coffee and cold Boulder winter air and for once a little fearless, and hell, it was worth a shot. I put forth the piece of paper with the post-it note. His handler, nice young girl she was, had the look in her eye like I just whipped out a pig's kidney and a Sharpie, because this was not kosher in her mind. I slowly tried to explain that Lewis wanted to be here, could he please sign it... and somewhere in there, the desire for a nice bitter said to him, "Just sign the damn thing and we can be in the pub by 9." So he hastily signed it.

Across the post-it note. So that the autograph was half on the post-it, half off. I hastily said thank you and moved on.

I gave it to Lew the next day. He gave me the same look my daughter gives me when I find her lost toy. And honestly, I have no idea if he still has it. But it was nice to make someone happy like that once in my life.

Some quick Google-fu suggests he's back in the Atlanta area, has an MSW, and might still be with this non-profit that does soccer for at-risk youth. Maybe I'll see if I can get an e-mail address for him.
posted by dw at 10:41 PM on May 29, 2007


Aren't ASL translators of live events much more rare than signed English translators? Just curious.

UDub primarily uses ASL translators. Rather, they primarily use only a few signers, and they're all ASL.
posted by dw at 10:50 PM on May 29, 2007


1200?
posted by klangklangston at 10:54 PM on May 29, 2007


As I am about to catch a fucking plane tomorrow, and haven't finished packing, like, for good, for real (thus earning endless ire from roommates, no doubt), I am at my parents' house, in their living room attempting to fall asleep.
Except that my father is also down here, because his snoring is so loud that it keeps my mother awake.
And me too.
Except for that fucks-his-mom bit, Oedipus had some OK ideas.
posted by klangklangston at 11:03 PM on May 29, 2007


Speaking of excellent things Jessamyn has seen...

No, seriously, I saw an excellent thing this weekend, although I find it hard to describe. I was out in the middle of the country, dirt road, no lights, middle of the night. I was walking along a hill, and off to the left was a huge field not yet mown for hay, but lush, even in the night you could tell that it was full and the grass was heavy and thick. And scattered all over the field, but not too thickly, were lightning bugs, none of which I'd have seen had I had my light on. They were numerous enough to really make the scene, but not too numerous that they weren't simply highlights in the broader tableau. It was great.

I also saw two different families of feral cats presiding over two different dumpster pads during that night. All the involved cats looked at me with the same look, which basically said, "We know you won't try it, you aren't that stupid." They were sweet. And scary.
posted by OmieWise at 6:19 AM on May 30, 2007


Man, I fall asleep and miss all the double-zero excitement, and now everyone's gone home and the longboat's dragged up on shore with only a few empty bottles scattered about the prow to taunt me with hints of a party. Stupid need for sleep!
posted by languagehat at 9:19 AM on May 30, 2007


Crete-smitten Bligh!
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:30 AM on May 30, 2007


I hear Crete's lovely this time of year. My parents once went to Crete, and, in the course of their wanderings, ran into their next door neighbors at the bottom of a large gorge.
posted by Kattullus at 10:25 AM on May 30, 2007


As a Cretan poet once wrote:
The Cretans, always liars, evil beasts, idle bellies!

I hear Crete's lovely this time of year. My parents once went to Crete, and, in the course of their wanderings, ran into their next door neighbors at the bottom of a large gorge.

See, this is what they get for answering those e-mails from Cretans telling them they need to transfer 10.000.000 drachma to your account because the second minister for sheep shearing and goat milking died and named you the sole heir.
posted by dw at 10:39 AM on May 30, 2007




I should thank you all for getting me out of my writing funk lately. I've spent the last month or so struggling to string two words together. But it seems like I've worked through it with the last two stories on here. Thanks all.
posted by dw at 12:36 PM on May 30, 2007


If you go to Crete, stay away from Iraklion as much as possible and spend time in pleasant little towns like Khania or Rethymnon. Or the wild mountainous south, if you like wild mountains. I like pleasant towns.

dw: You're welcome. You'll be getting the bill next week.
posted by languagehat at 12:40 PM on May 30, 2007


I don't know, I mean isn't this whole post-grunge/Christian rock thing a bit passé by now? Also, it's a good thing the Scott Stapp/Kid Rock sex tape never saw the light of day.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:33 PM on May 30, 2007


Is it wrong to get Scott Stapp high by blowing marijuana smoke at him? I am asking medically and ethically, of course. He's neutered and very good natured. I have known people that have intentionally 'smoked out' their Christian rock stars from time to time, and it hasn't seemed to be harmful, but I was just wondering, since it's come up recently.
posted by team lowkey at 5:41 PM on May 30, 2007


Scott Stapp/Kid Rock sex tape

If I ever become impotent, I'll know who to blame, goodnewsfortheinsane.
posted by Kattullus at 5:49 PM on May 30, 2007


Shit, if that's what it takes to make sure you never procreate, here you go.
posted by team lowkey at 6:02 PM on May 30, 2007


Shit, lowkey, do you even know what you're doing? The man's already dating a hasbian, next thing you know you've turned him into a neomosexual.

Myself, I'm a trisexual - I'll try anything once.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 6:25 PM on May 30, 2007


Dating a hasbian? Who is this wench! I must have names! The opposition must be destroyed!

Or did you mean the hasbian that he's married to, because that would be me.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:44 PM on May 30, 2007


Uh, dude, Nemo is like underage.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 8:46 PM on May 30, 2007


What's wrong with you people! I go to sleep and you can't make a single comment! Do I have to do everything!

[NOT QUESTIONIST]
posted by Kattullus at 4:35 AM on May 31, 2007


I'm not scared of anything but fear.
posted by OmieWise at 5:39 AM on May 31, 2007


I'm not scared of anything but fear.

Recursive terror!

[actually I have this problem too]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:05 AM on May 31, 2007


I spit on fear itself and laugh in its puny little face. Creepy crawlies, though, give me an awful fright. Plus, I live in constant terror of failure and impotence. I also have this weird anxiety thing about Alzheimer's. Beyond that, people with untreated Borderline Personality Disorder, being tortured for information I don't possess, and showing up to teach without having read the material all give me occasional nightmares.

But not fear itself! To that, I say "Pshaw!"
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:34 AM on May 31, 2007


*offers anotherpanacea the Kenko Memorial Seat on the longboat*

Now suck in your stomach boy, grapefruitmoon is here.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 6:49 AM on May 31, 2007


anotherpanacea--I just got Socractic Cit in the mail yesterday, looks great. I had to search it out after you talked about it. Now I just have to find time to read it.
posted by OmieWise at 7:17 AM on May 31, 2007


Who has time to read anything but this thread?
posted by languagehat at 7:22 AM on May 31, 2007


I've been making time by cutting out extraneous reading, you over-valued egotistical hack.
posted by OmieWise at 7:30 AM on May 31, 2007


[NOT LANGUAGEHATIST]
posted by OmieWise at 7:32 AM on May 31, 2007


All of my fears are embodied by that classic film from the 1980s, Maximum Overdrive.
posted by amro at 7:55 AM on May 31, 2007


I've been making time by cutting out extraneous reading

That site is so 2003! I haven't looked at it in months.
posted by languagehat at 8:01 AM on May 31, 2007


Ok, I'll admit it, I'm afraid of Emilio Estevez also. Although his role in Men at Work is what really gets me screaming.
posted by OmieWise at 8:08 AM on May 31, 2007


It's Gloria Estaban who gives me the screaming meemies.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:43 AM on May 31, 2007


You know it's that mimi gal who really flips me out.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:58 AM on May 31, 2007


You know what scares me? That deep down, every American will regress to their most animal of natures, where they become chest-beating, drunk, angry assholes.

In other words, that deep down, every one of us is a Red Sox fan.
posted by dw at 9:01 AM on May 31, 2007


Oh shit, whaddju jus say? Sully and Murph ova heah wanna talk witchu a minute. Naw, they just gotta question foya.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:08 AM on May 31, 2007


Also, did you SEE what A-Rod did last night? There was a popup to the Jays' third baseman, and as A-Rod (running the bases) passed by him, he clearly shouted "MINE!" at the guy. This is what one of your teammates might shout if they thought they had a better chance at making the catch than you. The third baseman dropped the ball, and the Yanks went on to win.

I though bitchslapping Bronson Arroyo was a shitty move, but man is this guy slimy.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:16 AM on May 31, 2007


You know it's that mimi gal who really flips me out.
posted by jessamyn at 10:58 AM on May 31


You mean Kathy Kinney? Yeah, she used to make my pants feel funny freak me out, too. But I saw her in some USO Iraq Comedy thing on HBO, and she made some joke about how WWII soldiers got Monroe and Iraq soldiers get her. She owned her unattractiveness with such spunk that she got some respeck from me.
posted by dios at 9:18 AM on May 31, 2007


Since everyone is opening up, I will too.

What really scares me is not being beloved on Metafilter.
posted by dios at 9:19 AM on May 31, 2007


[NOT TRUTHIST]
posted by dios at 9:19 AM on May 31, 2007


Also also, the favorite in the (US) National Spelling Bee, Samir Patel, just got knocked out on "clevis" -- he tried "clevice." In his post-elimination interview he admitted that he plateofbeansed it. Watch LIVE! on ESPN, or the finals are tonight on ABC.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:25 AM on May 31, 2007


I'm just mad about saffron.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:26 AM on May 31, 2007


Well, sorry, Safrron's mad about me.
posted by OmieWise at 9:31 AM on May 31, 2007


Saffron, even.
posted by OmieWise at 9:31 AM on May 31, 2007


Is there some way to compress this thread? It takes me like 20 seconds to reload this behemoth.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:32 AM on May 31, 2007


where they become chest-beating, drunk, angry assholes. In other words, that deep down, every one of us is a Red Sox fan.

...Or a fan of any Philadelphia professional sports team.
posted by amro at 9:32 AM on May 31, 2007


Is there some way to compress this thread? It takes me like 20 seconds to reload this behemoth.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:32 AM on May 31


What about the ability to comment directly from the recent activity page.

GENIUS! I want credit for this idea, yo!
posted by dios at 9:35 AM on May 31, 2007


I'm just mad about saffron.

Although I believe Eddy and Patsy's treatment of her to be deplorable at times, I find Saffy to be a tiresome prat.
posted by amro at 9:43 AM on May 31, 2007


Well, yeah, but with Eddy as a mother? Who can really blame her.

Bubble is who I'm mad about.
posted by OmieWise at 9:49 AM on May 31, 2007


I'm the world's most happy creature, tell me what can worry be?
I'm crazy 'bout my baby, and my baby's crazy 'bout me.
posted by languagehat at 10:17 AM on May 31, 2007


Is there some way to compress this thread? It takes me like 20 seconds to reload this behemoth.

That's no way for a Viking to talk. I remember when we had to edit THIS MESS in hex via teletype just to keep jrun from crashing.

I'm scared of M.A.D.D. but I'm mad about D.A.R.E.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 10:18 AM on May 31, 2007


"Drumming fiercely on a hollow log with a longitudinal slit tuned to moon frequencies, I asked him about employment, medical coverage, retirement benefits, tax shelterage, convenience cards, and Christmas Club accounts.

That's a roger, he moonbeamed back, a dollar covers it all, and if you don't have a dollar we'll lend you a dollar through the Greater Moon Development Mechanism."

[sef-link, suck it haters!]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:32 AM on May 31, 2007


I remember when we had to edit THIS MESS in hex via teletype just to keep jrun from crashing.

THIS MESS destroyed my old iBook. I am not kidding. I would try to load it and the computer would cry and give up. And crash.

It was never quite the same after that.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:39 AM on May 31, 2007


I'm terrified of snakes.

This becomes hilarious because instead of cussing at work, I have a habit of muttering "Snakes on a plane!" when something goes awry.

Inevitably someone asks if I saw the movie or mentions something about the movie and I have to admit that I have not seen, nor will I ever see, this cinematic masterpiece because I am TERRIFIED OF FUCKING SNAKES.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:46 AM on May 31, 2007


"The man's already dating a hasbian, next thing you know you've turned him into a neomosexual."

I read that as noemasexual, one who fucks phenomonological meaning. Or maybe pneumosexual, one of those heavy breathers.

"Or did you mean the hasbian that he's married to, because that would be me."

'I only love four women in my life/ my mother, my sister, my girlfriend and my wife.'

"I'm just mad about saffron."

For the longest time, when he said "Fontaine," I thought he was saying "Fourteen." I was like, "Eww."
On the AbFab tip, I had a huge crush on Saffy when it first started airing here.
posted by klangklangston at 10:47 AM on May 31, 2007


TEVE TORBES
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:48 PM on May 31, 2007


Today I went to the Museum of the American Indian with a friend passing through the city, playing the big city tour guide to my country cousin. There are a bunch of longboats in the lobby, and I considered posing with one, thinking I might someday be able to use the pic to gain a seat.

Then I realized that I was an Irish-Jew Anglo guy caught between a guided tour of Lakota school children and a group of Christian-schoolers with big crosses on their uniforms. The shoving broke out when somebody from the Lakota side accused the Christians of convert-or-die tactics in the 1600s, and a little blonde boy shouted that the Lakota group was a bunch of heathens headed for Hell. Another kid, white as an Englishman but armed with a toy bola he bought at the gift shop, whipped the miniature Aryan in the face and then ran away crying.

Pretty soon there was a general melee, where kids armed with water bottles and book bags went up against each other in a pretty hectic attempt to subdue the cultural Other. I lost track of things when the longboat I was leaning on was overturned and I was caught beneath it, wondering why anybody'd bother to have a rumble in a museum on such a nice day.

By the time I was extricated, the whole area had been cordoned off by the FBI and there were mutterings about terrorism. I slipped away in the confusion... but I never did get that picture. Maybe next time.
posted by anotherpanacea at 12:51 PM on May 31, 2007


Omie- Awesome! Partisans is sitting on my amazon shopping cart, waiting for a big order to get free shipping.
posted by anotherpanacea at 12:56 PM on May 31, 2007


I read that as noemasexual, one who fucks phenomonological meaning.

I read that as one who only sleeps with people whose last name is Garciaparra.

Or maybe pneumosexual, one of those heavy breathers.

No, that's someone who only does it with gas station tire pumps.

On the AbFab tip, I had a huge crush on Saffy when it first started airing here.

Julia Sawalha? I still have a crush on her.

I'm not scared of much. OK, I have to draw the curtains and blinds at night. I'm afraid I'll see someone standing in the window.
posted by dw at 1:23 PM on May 31, 2007


Dude... Saffron went on to marry Horatio Hornblower?
posted by anotherpanacea at 2:31 PM on May 31, 2007


So... what's your favoritelylyly named bodypart?

I like to say ssspleeeeeeeeennnn
posted by Kattullus at 7:41 PM on May 31, 2007


I'm either missing a reference or Kattullus has had a few.

But I'll bite. I like "crook of the elbow," because it sounds as though it stole the elbow. Not sure that's an official body part, though. On a related note, I also enjoy saying "funny bone."

I bet I can guess cortex's ("Wernicke" is a fun word to say, too.)
posted by amro at 8:45 PM on May 31, 2007


I like sputum. I like how it can mean mucus or phlegm. Very convenient.

Is too a body part.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 9:27 PM on May 31, 2007


I think crooks of the elbow should be jailed for life.

Are we done here?
posted by dw at 8:09 AM on June 1, 2007


Just taking a well-deserved break.
posted by OmieWise at 9:16 AM on June 1, 2007


We're trying to create compelling first-hand evidence for the importance of literal timestamps, is all.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:19 AM on June 1, 2007


Are we done here?
posted by dw at 10:09 AM on June 1


Well, I'll go ahead and comment in this thread. The front page today is incredibly shitty, with the exception of Crash's accordion post. One of the worst days I can recall in a long time so far, full of single link poli/news/editorial junk. So I guess instead I'll just comment in this thread.

So, what do you think about this horny grandmother?
posted by dios at 9:21 AM on June 1, 2007


The New Yorker article by Gunther Grass was interesting, though it hasn't really provoke the debate it could have, as yet. Otherwise, the front page is definitely yawn-worthy today. Nessie? The Alan Johnson article, straight from the BBC front page? A Rolling Stone article?
posted by Aloysius Bear at 11:14 AM on June 1, 2007


I wish people would stop posting Mister Rodgers stuff, because I'll always read it and always feel bad that he's dead now. And also, how much I hate children's TV right now with all the yelling and quick cuts.
posted by dw at 11:37 AM on June 1, 2007


There've been, like 76 comments in this thread since I last commented here.

I'm not sure whether that's a good thing or a bad thing.

It may be indifferent.

Or it may simply be that *I* am indifferent.

Either way, this is a deeply content-free comment, placed solely for the sake of edging us ever-so-slightly closer to the next round number.

Also, would this be an appropriate place to post bad short fiction?
posted by dersins at 11:54 AM on June 1, 2007


Sure. I mean, er, how bad?
posted by OmieWise at 11:56 AM on June 1, 2007


It would definitely be a bad place to post appropriate short fiction. Make of that what you will.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:59 AM on June 1, 2007


Make out how you will.
posted by OmieWise at 12:04 PM on June 1, 2007


If we are telling stories, I should tell you the story of the time I went on a date with a paraplegic girl. I also got a good story about a friend of mine which involved a bar in the barrio, a chica, a gang, and a Fiesta Mart, but that one really needs to be told in person to someone who is familiar with Dallas. The other story is just timeless.
posted by dios at 12:08 PM on June 1, 2007


I should tell you the story of the time I went on a date with a paraplegic girl.

You tell that story, I close this thread.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:12 PM on June 1, 2007


You tell that story, I close this thread.
posted by jessamyn at 2:12 PM on June 1


Because we couldn't improve the thread any further after that, amirite?
posted by dios at 12:19 PM on June 1, 2007


This cartoon was on my New Yorker desk calendar yesterday.
posted by amro at 12:22 PM on June 1, 2007


Here's today's.
posted by amro at 12:23 PM on June 1, 2007


Also, would this be an appropriate place to post bad short fiction?

Bad lyrics are more traditional.

Death, it's just another nuisance
And my head is filled with pollutants


Make out how you will.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 12:29 PM on June 1, 2007


See, it's funny because it turns that she wasn't a virgin at all.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:02 PM on June 1, 2007


Also, would this be an appropriate place to post bad short fiction?

Sure. I mean, er, how bad?

Nah, I changed my mind. I think I'll just link to a deeply embarrassing picture of me in 1987 instead.

Bad lyrics are more traditional.

Well, in that case, I give you my current "favorite" example of truly fucking terrible lyrics. I hear this song on the radio all the time. God damn it's fucking awful:


"Hey There Delilah" by Plain White T's

Hey there Delilah
What's it like in New York City?
I'm a thousand miles away
But girl tonight you look so pretty
Yes you do
Times Square can't shine as bright as you
I swear it's true

Hey there Delilah
Don't you worry about the distance
I'm right there if you get lonely
Give this song another listen
Close your eyes
Listen to my voice it's my disguise
I'm by your side

Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me
What you do to me

Hey there Delilah
I know times are getting hard
But just believe me girl
Someday I'll pay the bills with this guitar
We'll have it good
We'll have the life we knew we would
My word is good

Hey there Delilah
I've got so much left to say
If every simple song I wrote to you
Would take your breath away
I'd write it all
Even more in love with me you'd fall
We'd have it all

Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me

A thousand miles seems pretty far
But they've got planes and trains and cars
I'd walk to you if I had no other way
Our friends would all make fun of us
and we'll just laugh along because we know
That none of them have felt this way
Delilah I can promise you
That by the time we get through
The world will never ever be the same
And you're to blame

Hey there Delilah
You be good and don't you miss me
Two more years and you'll be done with school
And I'll be making history like I do
You know it's all because of you
We can do whatever we want to
Hey there Delilah here's to you
This ones for you

Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me
Oh it's what you do to me
What you do to me.

("even more in love with me you'd fall?" What, was this song written by a twelve year old?)

posted by dersins at 1:19 PM on June 1, 2007


"This photo is unavailable to you."

Asshole.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:02 PM on June 1, 2007


"Chocolate Factory"

When I discovered you I discovered a piece within, joy like no other, your my
closest friend, if you could be a number you will be a perfect 10
right out of the skies you were heaven sent.
the way we make love over and over againg
if i had to describe you I wouldnt know were to begin
I am so proud to be your next of kin
you pray over me when I had no reason to live

[Chorus:] candy caramel coated taffies chocolate covered strawberries,
love so sweet, your my chocolate factory
gum drops mixed with chocolate milk bars, theres so much variaty
love so sweet, your my chocolate factory

[Verse 2:] now if i could write a book on how you make me feel
the tittle would be strong black man, and thats for real
you got me going round and round like a ferries wheel
in and out of relationships and baby your the deal,
ain't nobody on god's green earth for me, heaven stirred us up together
and made the perfect chemistry, wouldn't change you for the world as long as I
exist. Always in the kitchen cooking my favorite meal.

[Chorus x 3]
posted by klangklangston at 3:19 PM on June 1, 2007


I did not transcribe that [NOT TYPIST]
posted by klangklangston at 3:20 PM on June 1, 2007


"This photo is unavailable to you."

Asshole.


Weird, cortex. It's set as public, but when I signed out to see if I could look at it it wouldn't let me.

Huh.

Anyway, try this.

I'm the dipshit on the right.
posted by dersins at 3:23 PM on June 1, 2007


I am to assume you were a poser, right? (poseur to you Canadians). Or were you so hardcore that you only needed 3 strings on your bass? Oh, no, I think I get it. You only used the top string anyway, and that second one was just getting in your way, so you curbed that bitch. Way fucking rad.
posted by team lowkey at 3:50 PM on June 1, 2007


It's poseur to we USAians, too. Perhaps you meant to write posuer to you literates?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:05 PM on June 1, 2007


I am to assume you were a poser, right?

Oh, total poseur.

Both the bass and the t-shirt belonged to my friend Alex, who's the Robert-Smith-looking guy in the middle. I had no fucking idea how to play that thing, other than something about hitting the strings to make some sort of noise.

But since it wasn't plugged in, I couldn't even really do that.

I still don't have the ability to play a musical instrument.

I don't really miss it, though.
posted by dersins at 4:12 PM on June 1, 2007


Ethereal Bligh: "It's poseur to we USAians, too. Perhaps you meant to write posuer to you literates?"

Yeah, that second one. Why do you literates put that 'u' in there anyway? Seems like a pretty illiterate thing to do. Of course, what do I know, I'm just a loseur.

Don't you hate it when you misspell something when you're correcting someone else? We really need to push for that edit window Matt almost agreed to.
posted by team lowkey at 6:02 PM on June 1, 2007


No, that was verisimilitude. Because I was implying that you are illiterate (humorous hyperbole—I'm reasonably sure you are literate), I misspelled it on purpose. No, really. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:36 PM on June 1, 2007


Did someone say panncreeahsssssss?
posted by Kattullus at 7:02 PM on June 1, 2007


What was that about panaceas?
posted by anotherpanacea at 8:27 PM on June 1, 2007


Who wants pancakes?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:29 PM on June 1, 2007


I hate Mr. Rogers. Hate. Always have. Those puppets were freaking condescending, meow meow.

ARGH. SHUT UP DANIEL CAT PUPPET. STOP HAUNTING MY DREAMS.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 9:05 PM on June 1, 2007


I mean, Mr. McFEELY? Really?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 9:31 PM on June 1, 2007


I was terrified of X the Owl when I was a kid. True story.
posted by amro at 10:07 PM on June 1, 2007


If you wanna talk terrifying, look no further than Lady Elaine.
posted by team lowkey at 10:20 PM on June 1, 2007


Guys, only six comments to go til the next round number! We can do it! (He says, not having helped much thus far...)
posted by Aloysius Bear at 4:27 AM on June 2, 2007


God loves you guys just the way you are; so does Fred Rogers. Jesus, what a creep!
posted by RussHy at 4:56 AM on June 2, 2007


Round number?
posted by languagehat at 7:25 AM on June 2, 2007


What round number?
posted by languagehat at 7:25 AM on June 2, 2007


I don't see any round number.
posted by languagehat at 7:26 AM on June 2, 2007


*looks around*
posted by languagehat at 7:26 AM on June 2, 2007


Oh, this round number!
posted by languagehat at 7:26 AM on June 2, 2007


I can't find the lyrics, but I can find the video: The worst song to ever come out of the UK.

NSF, um, all sentient lifeforms.
posted by dw at 9:09 AM on June 2, 2007


Chavtastic!
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:58 AM on June 2, 2007


Random selection from my MeFi wish list:

Adding a new flag reason: " I just don't get it."
posted by dw at 3:00 PM on June 2, 2007


I came (hur hur hur) up with a really bad sex metaphor the other day:

I split you with my axe
And as you fell I yelled
Timbuhhuhhurrhrhruhhuhhhrrrr
posted by Kattullus at 10:39 PM on June 2, 2007


But seriously: Jews. wtf.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:48 PM on June 2, 2007


Jews: WTC. Seriously.
posted by team lowkey at 11:43 PM on June 2, 2007


Jewbutt FTW! Srsly.
posted by Kattullus at 12:03 AM on June 3, 2007


Damnit, thread finally died before I could ask the one question that's been bugging me all weekend:

WTF was Purple Panda all about? Alien? Some sort of meditation on race relations? Or did Mr. Rogers just want a purple panda?
posted by dw at 7:39 PM on June 3, 2007


This thread will never die!

...until June 12th, that is.
posted by Kattullus at 9:43 PM on June 3, 2007


Purple Panda was from Planet Purple. Everyone there was purple, and all spoke in the same monotone.

What if people weren't different? What if you weren't special... just the way you are? Would that be a better place to live? Purple Panda would rather visit the freakishly ugly and terrifying (not to mentioned obviously mentally challenged or substance abusing) puppets in the Land of Make Believe than be on Planet Purple. How about you?
posted by team lowkey at 11:04 PM on June 3, 2007


Well, while Purple Panda did come from the Planet Purple, he commuted in from Someplace Else, clearly showing that while the Neighborhood of Make-Believe is a nice place to visit, no one wants to live there.

I was frikkin' obsessed with Purple Panda when I was 5 or 6.

Huh. Betty Aberlin had bit roles in both Dogma and Jersey Girl.
posted by dw at 12:33 AM on June 4, 2007


I always thought "Someplace Else" meant anywhere other than the Neighborhood. I may have been under-literalizing something they specifically tried to literalize, but I still believe it was a casual dismissal of Others; whether they be from Purple Planet or Jewsrael. Kind of like how the US treats the rest of the world.
posted by team lowkey at 1:27 AM on June 4, 2007


But seriously: Jews. wtf.

There's a great line in Knocked Up, one of just a few, where the lead woman asks Seth Rogen what he puts in his hair to make it so curly, and he says, "Jew."
posted by OmieWise at 6:03 AM on June 4, 2007


Opinion poll: if it had been William H. Macy playing the child molester in Happiness, would that have been a net positive or negative for the film?

Extra credit: have you ever insisted, and I mean really insisted, that it was him and not that other guy, Brian or whatever, to a friend during a drunken backyard barbecue? You've done that too, right? Help me out here.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:48 AM on June 4, 2007


Man, Happiness is a wonderful movie. I always hesitate to recommend it to people because a lot of people hated it and maybe the person I recommended it to would look at me funny afterwards, but I really, really enjoyed it, and laughed like a loon at the final scene.

Can't help you with the William H. Macy thing, though. Sorry.
posted by languagehat at 7:36 AM on June 4, 2007


Negative. William H. Macy so quickly turned into a caricature of himself that he's impossible for me to watch anymore, and that would have ruined an otherwise great movie.

I hope this doesn't turn into another DFW thing, cortex. I like you, really, I do, and I think I think that you have good taste.
posted by OmieWise at 7:47 AM on June 4, 2007


You're just jealous of William H. Macy's great big manly footnotes.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:53 AM on June 4, 2007


I don't care about his acting, I've adored William H. Macy since the moment I saw him give a handmade wooden bowl to David Letterman. He's quite the avid bowl turner.
posted by amro at 8:02 AM on June 4, 2007


Really? That's cool.
posted by OmieWise at 8:07 AM on June 4, 2007


Yeah, he even made the cover of Woodturning Basics.
posted by amro at 8:12 AM on June 4, 2007


a lot of people hated it and maybe the person I recommended it to would look at me funny afterwards

I know that look! I usually get it either when recommending Happiness or Tetsuo the Iron Man.

"What, you don't like the rapey robot?"
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 9:53 AM on June 4, 2007


I learned early in my life that I would rarely go wrong by seeking out the movies that friends and relatives and acquaintances would tell me that I really, really shouldn't see.

Once my circle of friends started being more generally composed of folks that had similar tastes in movies, that stopped working because they'd only warn me off stuff that really was awful. (See Zombie Toxin some time, for example!)

Followup: never trust a friend about a screwball comedy. Ever. It's a crapshoot, and you'll be annoyed at your friend afterward.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:01 AM on June 4, 2007


I liked Happiness, which is surprising since Laura Flynn Boyle was in it, and I have a reflexive desire to hate anything she is in. Of course, that mojo was counteracted by the fact that Jon Lovitz was in it, which usually means I will enjoy it. Also, I tend to enjoy Solondz films. So those two effects appear to be greater than the LFB effect.

I need to develop some mathematical formula for all of this.
posted by dios at 10:29 AM on June 4, 2007


I haven't seen a Solondz movie. Welcome to the Dollhouse hit too close to home for me in the previews and reviews. I didn't want to relive junior high.

In other news, my school is getting $105M cash money from Mr. and Mrs. Bill Gates of Medina, Washington. Only you wouldn't know that, because the press release the Gates Foundation and the University sent out credits the "School of Medicine." And now, I have faculty on our end fuming and people elsewhere not understanding the political ramifications.

You know that old, semi-bigoted saying about a woman scorned? Whoever came up with that never had to deal with pissed off faculty members.
posted by dw at 11:25 AM on June 4, 2007


I need to develop some mathematical formula for all of this.

Clf = (1 / Fl) + ((La - LFBa)/50))

Fl = family average rating of movie (1-100 scale)

La = number of times Jon Lovitz appears or speaks in movie OR number of minutes he appears in movie

LFBa = number of times Lara Flynn Boyle appears or speaks in movie OR number of minutes she appears in movie

Clf is a number between -1 and 1, where 1 is "cortex must cease all other life duties and bodily functions in order to see this movie fully dressed in morning coat and tuxedo pants with Windsor tie and waistcoat as if today he was to be married or buried or roasted by the Friars Club" and -1 is "cortex would find a root canal without anesthetic in Gitmo more pleasing."
posted by dw at 11:33 AM on June 4, 2007


Leave me out of dios' maths.

And truly, hell hath no tenure.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:36 AM on June 4, 2007


ISO 16000 clearly states I have to use you as a baseline. The Cortex Mean Movie Critique Coefficient.

They actually keep a clone of you in a vault in France watching Streets of Fire on repeating loop.
posted by dw at 12:22 PM on June 4, 2007


a clone of you in a vault in France watching Streets of Fire on repeating loop.

Man do I ever envy that clone.

Except for the whole being-a-clone-of-cortex thing, of course.

I kid!

posted by dersins at 1:23 PM on June 4, 2007


Preach latent thighs!
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:28 PM on June 4, 2007


Happiness was a very, very good movie. But I think it was as far as Solondz was able to go before he subsequently fell into the Total Cynicism and Misanthropy Abyss. In many ways I think Welcome to the Dollhouse is Solondz's best film because his cynicism is tempered by his deep love for some of his characters. Solondz's films are about the ubiquity of human vice and failure of character—initially, I think, in a strangely loving and accepting way that nevertheless doesn't sugarcoat our faults. But it seems to me that in Happiness, the loving and accepting side was just barely holding its own against Solondz's opposing misanthropy. After that film, I feel that all sympathy Solondz had for his characters had died.

Welcome to the Dollhouse in these respects comes extremely close to my own view of human nature and my emotional and intellectual response to it. I love people and am forgiving but at the same time am deeply fascinated with our vices and failings and the most squalid aspects of our character. Those bad things are, strangely, part of why I love people as much as I do. Even in the most sordid circumstances among people of the most twisted character, there is always those sparks of essential goodness—and in the most elevated circumstances among people of the most virtuous character, there is always those sparks of ugliness and despair. Somehow, to me, that's a good thing. I love art that presents this full-on, without flinching from either love or disgust.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 2:10 PM on June 4, 2007


Happiness is a great film. The first movie I saw with my first serious girlfriend was either Happiness or My Son, The Fanatic (equally, but differently bleak). The last movie we saw before breaking up was Notting Hill.

Also, incidentally, today, while driving south on I-93 I saw a yuppie in a black Audi who, while driving and talking on his cell, picked his nose with his cellphone antenna.

Furthermore, I've decided what I want on my gravestone:

HERE LIES KÁRI TULINIUS - HE DIED TOO SOON, TOO MUCH AND TOO OFTEN
posted by Kattullus at 4:20 PM on June 4, 2007


When we were last in Alabama we went out to my wife's family cemetery in the woods. It's been in use since the late 1700s or early 1800s -- some of the gravestones look like they belong in New England, and at the same time you find these stones done by illiterate farmers with backwards letters and all right next to the gentry.

But in the middle of this graveyard was huge slab for an deceased twentysomething Alabama highway patrol captain named, I'm not making this up, William Riker.

And on the slab, the original Enterprise. Not the Picard-era D, the Kirk-era one.

Clearly, Mama tried, but Mama didn't get it.
posted by dw at 4:47 PM on June 4, 2007


Agent Bull 1333 approved this mesage.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 4:59 PM on June 4, 2007


In Thirteen Hundred Thirty Four
Columbus Sailed the Ocean Floor

posted by cortex (staff) at 5:04 PM on June 4, 2007


^
posted by dersins at 5:46 PM on June 4, 2007


I iz ch4mp33un 0f th3 |\|4shun41 H4ck3rz 1336!
posted by Rock Steady at 6:48 PM on June 4, 2007


ego eimi
posted by dersins at 6:52 PM on June 4, 2007


You used 1337 5p34K on comment 1336? Kind of jumped the gun there, dontcha think?
posted by team lowkey at 9:39 PM on June 4, 2007


Vanity of vanities, oh, everything is a self-link if you count the byline. What profit is there in a post about llamas or other irrelevant fripperies? One post goes off the front page and another post takes its place, but the page abideth forever (barring jrun).

Ever since I found the longboat, I've been feeling listless. Floating endlessly at the top of my comments page, it blocks the life-giving sun of polemic and the fresh air of earnest disputes. Solondz brings tepid agreement. The front page holds no sizzle. I answer my own questions. My snarky comments die in mid-composition. No flameouts to light my path, no cabal to conceal it. Truly, he that increaseth the comment count increaseth in ennui.
posted by anotherpanacea at 9:42 PM on June 4, 2007


Bump.
posted by team lowkey at 10:04 PM on June 4, 2007


Whoomp! There it is...
posted by Kattullus at 10:05 PM on June 4, 2007


He Didn't Dare Look

I speak of Standish Saltbody, Harvard '24, a loyal
Cantabridgin,
A timid mad, a bashful man, whose makeup con-
tained of arrogance not a modicum or a smidgin.
You would travel far to discover a character more
retiring, more innately diffident,
His overdeveloped sense of self-unimportance was
pathetically evident,
Yet in him a kindred soul is what Galileo's persecutors
might well have found
Because he very timidity led him to fear that Standish
Saltbody was what the universe revolved around.
Small wonder that he was continually discomfited
by a runaway pulse;
He was convinced that his most trivial act could
generate the most appalling results.
He had not once attended the Yale game since under-
going graduation and valedictory
Because he was sure that his presence alone, although
unsuspected by his team, was sufficient to guarantee
an Eli victory.
Although Willie Mays was his hero, his very ideal, he
would never watch him on TV
Because he was sure that although Willie couldn't
know that Standish Saltbody was watching him
from a distance of 2500 miles, that one fact would
hoodoo him into looking at strike three.
His sense of responsibility and guilt reached a point at
which from any positive move he was likely to re-
frain;
He was certain that any candidate he voted for would
be defeated, just as his washing the care would bring
on torrential rain.
Thus we see that this meekest and most self-deprecai-
tive of God's creatures paradoxically felt himself to
be omnipotent,
Since of any contretemps in his immediate world his
words or deeds were obviously the precipitant;
And indeed, if of the cosmos he was not the hub,
How is it that he could make the telephone ring
merely by settling down in the tub?
posted by OmieWise at 5:50 AM on June 5, 2007


Shit, man, do you have to use entity numbers to
160;160;get spaces to code?
posted by OmieWise at 5:51 AM on June 5, 2007


Nope, not even that works. I'm a dolt.
posted by OmieWise at 5:52 AM on June 5, 2007


Query: what is get spaces to code? You keep the pound?
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 6:11 AM on June 5, 2007


It's not nice to make fun of the retards.
posted by OmieWise at 6:48 AM on June 5, 2007


Do you mean get code to s  p  a  c  e  s?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:49 AM on June 5, 2007


&nbsp;  :      the terrible secret of spaces
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:20 AM on June 5, 2007


Yeah, but I put in those nice nonsense letters at the beginning of each second line to indent, and they were there on preview and then disappeared on post. I felt cheated. I felt betrayed. I'm not sure this is going to work out.
posted by OmieWise at 7:46 AM on June 5, 2007


You mean like this?

I speak of Standish Saltbody, Harvard '24, a loyal
Cantabridgin,
    A timid man, a bashful man, whose makeup con-
tained of arrogance not a modicum or a smidgin.
You would travel far to discover a character more
retiring, more innately diffident,
    His overdeveloped sense of self-unimportance was
pathetically evident,
Yet in him a kindred soul is what Galileo's persecutors
might well have found
    Because he very timidity led him to fear that Standish
Saltbody was what the universe revolved around.


(I also changed "A timid mad" to "A timid man" for you—no extra charge.)
posted by languagehat at 8:14 AM on June 5, 2007


See?

nbsp is your friend
(& to start and ; to end).
posted by languagehat at 8:15 AM on June 5, 2007


I hate you all.
I'm taking my Ogden Nash and going home.
posted by OmieWise at 8:29 AM on June 5, 2007


Omie, sugarpie, the trick is to not preview. If you preview, your spiffy stuff gets turned to rendering like so much lard and returned to you as offal. Sorry.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:44 AM on June 5, 2007


Oh, ok, that makes sense.

You had me at sugarpie.
posted by OmieWise at 8:50 AM on June 5, 2007


I'm a dolt.
It's not nice to make fun of the retards.


I'm pretty sure you made it rain yesterday, too. Stop washing your car already.
posted by amro at 8:52 AM on June 5, 2007


If you preview, you can just browse backward and then post.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:59 AM on June 5, 2007


Haha, amro called you teh Rain Man.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 9:10 AM on June 5, 2007


Or a rainmaker, which in my business is a really good thing.
posted by amro at 11:00 AM on June 5, 2007


amro, don't listen to the haters. You can call me whatever you want.

I won't go so far as to actually suggest "sugarpie," but neither would I object if you read this comment as highlighting that particular diminutive.
posted by OmieWise at 11:06 AM on June 5, 2007


I won't bogart "sugarpie" from jessamyn, poodle.
posted by amro at 11:45 AM on June 5, 2007


Isn't 'poodle' just a contraction of 'puddle of poo'.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 1:48 PM on June 5, 2007


Add a question mark on the end there if you wish. Just don't call me late for dinner.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 1:50 PM on June 5, 2007


No, no it isn't, you big meanie.
posted by OmieWise at 5:23 AM on June 6, 2007


Turn that 'm' upside down more like.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 5:43 AM on June 6, 2007


So you made it dinner on time, and it was weanies?
posted by OmieWise at 6:16 AM on June 6, 2007




Lord knows why, but I just reread 9144 and 9147. Jesus, what threads!

And, I miss cedar. Strange to say, since I didn't know him, but I liked his style and his blog and everything is defunct. I worry a bit, we exchanged some emails once long ago, and it seemed like things weren't the easiest.
posted by OmieWise at 7:53 AM on June 6, 2007


I miss cedar.

I do too, I wrote to him when he was in the pokey and havent heard much from him in a while. I'll redouble efforts and see if he's trackdownable.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:41 AM on June 6, 2007


Wow. Those are some difficult threads. I dunno why, but metafilter doesn't feel so serious as it used to be. Not even metatalk. Survival of the thickest-skinned?
posted by anotherpanacea at 10:29 AM on June 6, 2007


Well, one crazy thing in those thread, which were just over two years ago, 5 months after The Great November, is when someone mentions the number of users as being in the low 20k's. I actually think it's amazing that more of that kind of shit hasn't been happening, and I imagine part of it is that there are more and more active mods now.

Hi jess, cortex.
posted by OmieWise at 11:02 AM on June 6, 2007


That's an interesting point, Omie. I don't know quite what you mean about the relation between more active mods and the fall-off of "xxKers" references (elaborate?), but I definitely do feel like there's been a huge if gradual dropoff in those jokes, and it hadn't even occurred to me until you mentioned it just now.

I suppose it's mostly the product of a mix of the growing total user count—satisfyingly meaningful round numbers are growing less common—and the now very steady and unhampered registration process. Jokes about 14kers, 17kers, etc were so common in part because there were major milestones in reg practices around those groups; 20kers were really the vanguard of the new world order of open, paid registration.

I'd bet that there have been jokes about every major 10K group since, and certainly we still get usernumber humor and non-humor, but compared to two or three years ago it's like nothing.

The fact that the newbs in the 20ks are now oldbies is probably a big part of that, I'd guess—the line between neophyte and journeyman and regular and curmudgeon has been shifting so steadily for some time now that the generational gaps have really gotten blurred. Pretty much anyone with an investment in that older-school, constrained past of the site—then-oldbies and then-newbies alike—is a grizzled vet by now, or gone; and so too, perhaps, the old K-wars with them.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:17 AM on June 6, 2007


(he notes, with a twinge of, if not sadness precisely, perhaps melancholy)
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:23 AM on June 6, 2007


Well, but, the 60kers are really a bunch of jerks.
posted by klangklangston at 11:34 AM on June 6, 2007


Huh? I never realized that red==republican and blue==democrat wasn't at all universal prior to 2000.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:35 AM on June 6, 2007


And I just went back and read thos unowen (unowin'?) threads, and was kinda amazed at the viciousness and the rancor from folks defending what ultimately turned out to be a scammer.
Ah well. At least no one reads my old comments. I used to be a dick!
posted by klangklangston at 11:36 AM on June 6, 2007


Oh no, I meant that I'm surprised that anotherpanacea sees fewer crazy snarkfests happening, and speculate that there should actually be more, given the growth of the user base. I'm not sure his social darwinist ;) explanation holds water given that growth, unless the selection bias is on the order of speciation (mods versus proles) and not user versus user.

I hadn't thought about the xxkers jokes, but I do think you're right, I don't see as many of them. I do have to admit to a bit of shock every time I seen an active >50k user. There's something that just seems so wrong about it.
posted by OmieWise at 11:44 AM on June 6, 2007


Well, with the fall of the Soviet Union the political color red was going for cheepz and the Republicans knowing a good deal when they saw one snapped it up.
posted by Kattullus at 11:51 AM on June 6, 2007


Hah! Gotta love coincidence. Or maybe Google has taken the side of Martin Luther.
posted by Kattullus at 12:11 PM on June 6, 2007


Man, I did not need to be reminded of 9147. I don't think I have ever been angrier on MeFi than I was in that thread.

And I just went back and read thos unowen (unowin'?) threads, and was kinda amazed at the viciousness and the rancor from folks defending what ultimately turned out to be a scammer.

That would obviously refer to me. The thing is, though, is that my whole point, the whole thing that made me so angry was that it didn't matter whether she was a scammer or not. What set me off was that there was an inquisition to see if she was worthy. Turns out, she wasn't. But, for me, being generous and determining worthiness are two concepts that don't belong together because the latter negates the former. Or something. It's hard to explain. Another way to say it is that I think generosity is a selfless act that puts another person ahead of one's self. Judging their worthiness for that generosity turns that back around again and makes it about one's self. And being generous as a guise for any kind of self-interest really deeply offends me.

All of that I could have and should have explained in clam, reasoned terms. And, particularly, I could have reminded myself of the importance of the generosity of spirit that keeps in mind that, usually, even when people act in a way that really bothers me as this does, they're still unlikely to have been being willfully harmful and, most of all, that I'm not perfect and act badly myself.

I have gotten a lot more thick-skinned on MeFi and that's why I've survived being here and am still around. Being thick-skinned meant, of course, that I had to learn to deal with the strong, personal attacks that came my way early on. But it also has meant keeping a certain kind of emotional distance in general. A distance such that the things that got me so upset in 9144 don't upset me as much now. Because I don't let them.

Finally, I somehow also found a way to let more of the kind, generous person I think I am in real life assert itself against the judgmental and angry person I seem to easily be online which I'm not so much in real life. A lot of times now it's, well, that kinda pissed me off but, hell, I think I'll just decide to keep liking the person anyway. And usually I decide that and it suddenly is true.

I've been cranky the last ten days or so, though.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 12:12 PM on June 6, 2007


I don't think I was paying all that much attention when the u.n. owen thing went down—I remember having to do a lot of research on it when I was putting together 88 Lines, including a read-through of both those threads and other stuff (the tapes wiki documentation, threads on other sites, references after the fact). And I came away from it feeling unconvinced that the mefi reaction was anything to be happy about, even if she did seem to be kind of a twit.

Of all the things that got into the song, that may have been the most unpleasant to revisit—not the bright, one-sided flameout of someone exploding out of nowhere, or even the flare-up of some personal rivalry between two members, but a great big protracted pileon in both directions, everyone dirtier for having not just said, "this is ugly, let it drop."

Understanding now that OmieWise was talking about snarkfests and not K jokes (bad reading on my part, there), I agree there too: it's gotten less bad in general. Less intensely ugly, at least, and that too is as much as anything owed to the growing userbase, I think. The world is less small than it was two years ago, or especially four or six years back, and that helps: any one user going after any other user in earnest seems to draw a larger proportion of puzzled head-shakers, for one thing.

More eyes on the site has probably helped, but I don't that it can be credited for the general shift—I'd venture that having a lot of folks hanging out at AskMe, and a bigger and less ouroboric userbase in general, has helped change the site dynamic, and having several sets of hands at the admin console has done more to help tide some of the flare-ups that do occur than change the inherent potential for said flare-ups.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:35 PM on June 6, 2007


Well, I forgot that we're actually hanging out in this great big flamewar thread. Bu it's a good example: more absurd than offensive. I guess maybe somebody took it seriously (motty's red mist, etc.) but I just looked and laughed, then settled in to learn some more about Maimonides.

I think part of it is that there's such a large contingent of dedicated-but-lighthearted snarkers. I mean, you can't hardly get good and self-righteous before some flameout fan pulls up a lawn chair to egg you on, and that tends to deflate people a bit. Let's say that there's a new super-predator that's managing the troll population, leaving herbivores to range free. Let's hope the predators don't starve for want of fresh troll meat!

If cortex is really deleting so much stuff that the site has drastically changed in character, I'd be very surprised. You're not, are you cortex?

Maybe it's just summertime.
posted by anotherpanacea at 12:55 PM on June 6, 2007


BTW, did unowen turn out to be a scammer? I didn't catch any explicit debunking, though cedar does point out the extreme dubiousness of her claims.

keeping a certain kind of emotional distance in general. A distance such that the things that got me so upset in 9144 don't upset me as much now. Because I don't let them.

I've been trying to work out what, if anything, people gain from their participation in online communities. This seems to be it. The skin-density metaphor is all off; what we gain is distance, i.e. perspective. Different kinds of people push each other's buttons differently, but if you sit back and watch the ensuing fireworks a number of times, you learn the tricks and stop being so vulnerable.

The real question is whether this lesson has any value for participants outside of these online communities. There's a research project for some enterprising social scientist: does the internet teach real-world social skills? I'm inclined to think that the answer would be 'no,' or at least, 'not very much,' in the same way that Mortal Kombat won't teach you to defend yourself from muggers. But it'd be cool if I was wrong.
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:11 PM on June 6, 2007


Well, I once ripped a mugger's heart out of his chest, but I don't know whether or not that has anything to do with all the time I spent playing Mortal Kombat.
posted by Kattullus at 1:22 PM on June 6, 2007


hurf durf, y'all.
posted by dersins at 1:24 PM on June 6, 2007


Hmm... my only attempt at a jumping uppercut got me stomped on and lost me my favorite pair of Doc Martins. Maybe I should have played more....
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:24 PM on June 6, 2007


"BTW, did unowen turn out to be a scammer? I didn't catch any explicit debunking, though cedar does point out the extreme dubiousness of her claims. "

Yeah, at some point her former roomie posted her livejournal or something. I'm rather too lazy to track it down right now.
posted by klangklangston at 1:35 PM on June 6, 2007


Here's the lj post by the former roommate.
posted by Kattullus at 1:49 PM on June 6, 2007


Different kinds of people push each other's buttons differently, but if you sit back and watch the ensuing fireworks a number of times, you learn the tricks and stop being so vulnerable.

Absolutely. I used to spend a fair amount of time doing the flamewar circuit on BBSes and USENET, and at the time I found that even though I could be a nasty, effective little wit sometimes, I'd get caught out by the volleys. And it wasn't that the kitchen was all that hot, even, just that I wasn't really much for the heat. I wasn't used to dealing with jabs and such.

Over time, I've gotten a lot more conversant in the means and the methods, and have found that I don't get hooked in nearly as easily—while I've become much more capable and precise in my potential assholery, I've lost what weird youthful taste I had for putting it into practice. I have to bite my tongue now and then, but it's not often; usually I just shrug and get on with less snarky things, or make a willful effort to defuse some of the tension that's a-building.

So maybe the userbase in general is aging a little, in that sense—more people have seen it all before, either here or elsewhere, and so there's a little bit less of the earnest fisticuffs and a bit more of the wizened headshaking and metacommentary: we've learned that the game is not that good, after all.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:51 PM on June 6, 2007


But 14Kers are still the best, yo.
posted by languagehat at 4:00 PM on June 6, 2007


Whatever, newb. Four digits is the way to go: a hundred million cartoon characters can't be wrong.
posted by cortex (staff) at 4:23 PM on June 6, 2007


Yeah, I thought there was a MeTa post about that LJ entry that had more debunking too...

(Though yeah, I've been on the internet long enough to know the things that push my buttons, but I'm still working on not letting them get to me...)
posted by klangklangston at 6:05 PM on June 6, 2007


whoa, from that un.owen lj post comes this gem,
I watched her use a good pound of butter in one week...
hurf, durf?
posted by atrazine at 7:07 PM on June 6, 2007


a bigger and less ouroboric userbase in general

We don't eat our own tails anymore? Or do you just mean cyclical in nature somehow?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:55 PM on June 6, 2007


Hell, I don't know what I meant any more. I'm high on virus for the last couple days.

But yeah, something about specifically the tendency of the life-cycle of a mefite to be a grand and visible thing, when among the relatively sparse crowd of shouting voices one could manage a bit of drama, a bit of proper straight-faced immolation as the burnout denied all the things that once compelled him to join and obsess and grow bitter. The watchable chase of the molting curmudgeon after his own bright youth, spitting at where he once (so he declares) was before All This became so shit, so downhill, so not what it Once Was, etc.

Still got some of that virus going. Also, hackers fucked up every single one of my sites at about 4 this afternoon (heckuva job, DH!), so I'm kinda annoyed about that.

Apropos of nothing.

*eyes banhammer, watches flag queue*
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:58 PM on June 6, 2007


we can have nice things
oh, wait, no; I guess we can't.
fuck you, shitnozzle



Gosh, that really sucks (the hacking, I mean. The haiku is fine (except it really doesn't mention a season) ).
posted by Burhanistan at 9:07 PM on June 6, 2007


The sudden denial of nice things represents winter, man.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:18 PM on June 6, 2007


Shitnozzle is a seasonal word representing the time of year when exhaust from cars, instead of going up, kinda slithers along the ground, making people like me who like to walk to work cough and hack (not into websites).

Excellent use of a cutting word, by the way.
posted by Kattullus at 9:30 PM on June 6, 2007


Stalling so close to the next roundie?

Maybe Chunk is dead.
posted by team lowkey at 11:44 PM on June 6, 2007


Not so fast, team lowkey. Chunk—whoever Chunk is—Chunk lives!
posted by cgc373 at 12:08 AM on June 7, 2007


All hail the Recent Comments tab and this, the 1400th comment!
posted by cgc373 at 12:09 AM on June 7, 2007


Whoever Chunk is?!? What are you, new?

Don't you realize? The next time we see sky
it'll be over another town. The next time you take a test, it'll be in some other school. Our parents, they want the bestest stuff for us. But right now they gotta do what's right for them, 'cause it's their time. Their time, up there. Down here it's our time. It's our time down here.
posted by team lowkey at 12:22 AM on June 7, 2007


whoever Chunk is

Well, now you're going to have to do the truffle shuffle.
posted by amro at 3:49 AM on June 7, 2007


You know your voice is kind of nice, when your mouth isn't screwing it up.
posted by Rock Steady at 5:21 AM on June 7, 2007


Well, when first I heard Rock Steady it thrilled me to the bone...but now? Meh.

So there.
posted by OmieWise at 5:37 AM on June 7, 2007


You know your voice is kind of nice, when your mouth isn't screwing it up.

Yeah and you look kind of pretty. When your face isn't screwing it up.
posted by amro at 5:54 AM on June 7, 2007


I blew Chunk.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 6:45 AM on June 7, 2007


He told me I was the only one. *cries*
posted by OmieWise at 6:49 AM on June 7, 2007


I just crafted an incredibly funny joke that somehow ties together One-Eyed Willy and the Eye of Sauron via Sean Astin, but I will leave it as an exercise for the reader.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:58 AM on June 7, 2007


Jesus, you all are some lightweight motherfuckers. We hit 1400 and suddenly no one has the time anymore?
posted by OmieWise at 12:33 PM on June 7, 2007


I'd like to point out that the number of comments in this thread at some point surpassed my SAT score. When is not important.
posted by amro at 12:41 PM on June 7, 2007


I got time.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:44 PM on June 7, 2007


I got all kinds of time.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:45 PM on June 7, 2007


And my SAT score is tapping its feet and looking at us impatiently.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:46 PM on June 7, 2007


We really should make the most of our last week together.
posted by amro at 12:46 PM on June 7, 2007


We're getting close to my score. I'd not thought of it in that light. Perhaps we should stop now.
posted by OmieWise at 12:47 PM on June 7, 2007


Also, I'm leaving tomorrow for a long weekend away. I won't be back until WEDNESDAY NIGHT AFTER THE THREAD CLOSES.
posted by OmieWise at 12:49 PM on June 7, 2007


And my SAT score is tapping its feet and looking at us impatiently.

My SAT score is still asleep. Wake it when you get close.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:49 PM on June 7, 2007


Hah, when I just reloaded my comments the ghost in the machine had this to say about jessamyn: "Fresh"
posted by OmieWise at 12:50 PM on June 7, 2007


Unrelated: I'm inexclicably really kind of sad about John Lennon being dead. Fucking Beatles thread.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:58 PM on June 7, 2007


"Fresh"

We dance round in a ring and suppose,
But the ghost in the machine sits in the middle and knows.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:59 PM on June 7, 2007 [1 favorite]


My SAT score is still asleep. Wake it when you get close.

Wakey wakey.
posted by dersins at 1:04 PM on June 7, 2007


In Fourteen Hundred Twenty Two
Columbus had a Nice Fondue

posted by cortex (staff) at 1:39 PM on June 7, 2007


If we make it to my SAT score I'm buying you all a plate of beans.
posted by languagehat at 1:43 PM on June 7, 2007


The good news is that this thread is now qualified to teach SAT prep courses at Kaplan! My score is coming up shortly.
posted by Rock Steady at 2:17 PM on June 7, 2007


They had SAT's back then, 'hat?







ooooh! ice burn!

I thought the SAT was kind of pointless. Once in college, everyone I was there had similarly rocked it, so I didn't think it was a big deal to ace it. So when I was getting out of law school, and making my first resume, I didn't put that anywhere on it. I just put law school, college, and summer internship stuff on my resume. Eventually, my mother looked over my resume and said to put it on there. I disagreed because I didn't think it would be a big deal to an employer since it was some standardized test from like a decade before I was writing the thing. I eventually did put it on there but was embarrassed by it because I thought it was cheesy to be pimping a 1600 to a law firm since it has no correlation to the practice of law. But sure enough, after I was hired at my first job, the boss would introduce me around by that because he thought it was cool. I still can't believe that people think that rocking the SAT is a big accomplishment. I remember it being preposterously easy.

Honestly, here is a sample SAT question I got from the first google link:
Example:

Hoping to ------- the dispute, negotiators proposed a compromise that they felt would be ------- to both labor and management.
(A) enforce . . useful
(B) end . . divisive
(C) overcome . . unattractive
(D) extend . . satisfactory
(E) resolve . . acceptable
Honestly... that is like beyond simple.
posted by dios at 2:21 PM on June 7, 2007


Well, okay, granted, it's clearly useful to both parties to enforce the dispute, but not all of the questions were such gimmes.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:46 PM on June 7, 2007


Alright, stop rubbing it in that I'm the dummy here.

Sheesh, until now I thought I did pretty damn well on the SAT.
posted by amro at 2:47 PM on June 7, 2007



Honestly, here is a sample SAT question


Honestly... that is like beyond simple.

Usually when people lawyers feel compelled to use words like "honestly," it's because they're not being entirely, y'know, honest.
posted by dersins at 2:48 PM on June 7, 2007


uh, no offense. please don't sue me for libel.
posted by dersins at 2:50 PM on June 7, 2007


Oh, that's such crap.
posted by amro at 2:53 PM on June 7, 2007


Usually when people lawyers feel compelled to use words like ‘honestly,’ it's because they're not being entirely, y'know, honest.

People claim this, and in the case of frankly and in a few other cases, too. Honestly, I think it's a clever little rhetorical crock of shit. I can't think of any more than a very few instances where the use of these words is revealed to have been unintentionally ironic. They are used to indicate something like if I were forced to admit what I think then or this is possibly unpopular or insulting or all ambiguity and uncertainty aside, I think that and such.

Maybe it's the case that certain kinds of people, or people in certain professions, are rhetorically dishonest often enough that they actually use these words in this fasion. One does suspect that when a used car dealer says, "honestly, this car is a great deal" or "frankly, I shouldn't be selling this car to you at such a low price", they're being less than honest.

But these folks are inveterate liars anyway. Catching them in this particular rhetorical trick is like catching a clown at making a particularly terrifying facial expression indicating evil. One is not so particularly clever at seeing through this supposed deception.

As for my SAT scores, I have none. I didn't take the SAT.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 5:14 PM on June 7, 2007


Maybe it's the case that certain kinds of people, or people in certain professions, are rhetorically dishonest often enough that they actually use these words in this fasion.

That was, y'know, my point.

And stuff.
posted by dersins at 5:18 PM on June 7, 2007


In Canada we don't use SAT tests (not when I went to school, anyways). What do I wait for?
posted by Salmonberry at 5:28 PM on June 7, 2007


I'm certainly suspicious when a used car dealer uses those words while he's trying to sell me a car. When he's commenting on MetaFilter, not so much.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 5:35 PM on June 7, 2007


ok so in holland you do this test at the end of primary (elementary) school and it measures four competencies (two language, two maths) and the scale runs from 0 to 20 and we got a printout but you also get this neat-looking card that your parents are supposed to mark the scores on by hand from the printout data and that one only went to 19 but i scored 20 on one of the axes and my mum had to make an extra line on the card to record the score and maybe you'd think geeks among geeks after all that that would be kind neat and make you want to show off but i felt totally embarrassed by it in front of the other kids
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:36 PM on June 7, 2007


In Iceland, we don't have standardized tests, instead when we turn 17, we all go on top of a glacier with four sheepskins and a case of vodka between four of us. Three days later a helicopter comes for us. Whoever survives is declared fit to live and given a certificate.
posted by Kattullus at 5:59 PM on June 7, 2007


In fifth grade I had my dual hip surgery and was in a body cast for months. I missed half of that school year. And though they had a schoolroom in the children's hospital in which I spent about a total of two months, it was disorganized enough and I was miserable enough (feeling abandoned by my parents, whom I saw only on most weekends) that I pretty much didn't do anything. The teacher didn't give me any credit for my time there. So, when the elementary school was to decide whether I would continue on to the sixth grade, they were going to hold me back. However, we had taken some big standardized test (I forget what it's called, but I think most Americans will recognize it) at the end of the fall portion of fifth grade, and I had scored off-the-chart. The administrators decided that it really made no sense to hold me back. So, hurrah for standardized test scores. Although, my mom occasionally had second-thoughts about that because I was almost a year younger than my classmates, anyway (I had started early). But I would have been mortified had I been held back.

I thought it was funny that dios wasn't aware that it's maths in UK English. It makes more sense, as mathematics is plural. American mefites are much more aware of outside-of-the-US cultural stuff than is the average American. There's a story I often tell about how a politically conservative friend of mine—and I must say that I like this guy a lot and he was honest and earnest—told me that it was my large understanding and concern for foreign thought and that political context that was why he'd never vote for me for President. It's not like I was planning to run for President, but I was stunned by his statement. I think it reveals something of the conservative American mindset.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:00 PM on June 7, 2007


They had SAT's back then, 'hat?

Damn right, and you kids don't know how good you have it with your #2 pencils. We had to scrape out the correct box from a slab of stone with a fucking chisel, and if you made a mess of it you could either accept blowing the question or chisel out another copy of the slab (if there were any blank slabs left, of course). And the last one to finish had to carry all the slabs to the principal's office.

In Canada we don't use SAT tests

So which is it, toque-tossing or beer-chugging?
posted by languagehat at 6:02 PM on June 7, 2007


American mefites are much more aware of outside-of-the-US cultural stuff than is the average American.

Oh god yes, Blighey. It's what made me stay - and conversely, I wouldn't be able to endure this place for longer than a few minutes if it weren't so. Which is to say, I tip my hat to all of you, in a continental fashion, perhaps, but with nary a hint of patronisation.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:11 PM on June 7, 2007


I am interested in a free plate of beans.
posted by anotherpanacea at 7:13 PM on June 7, 2007


Hey OmniWise, still feeling like an ass?
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:45 PM on June 7, 2007


Dude, you're the one that can't spell his name.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:48 PM on June 7, 2007


I tip my hat to all of you

Danes. So polite.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:49 PM on June 7, 2007


Is gdiddy offering out some ass again? Polite is right, context. Danish party indeed.

*offers thread beers-n-sugarcubes*
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 8:59 PM on June 7, 2007


Thanks for making me feel so inferior, being that my SAT score was last month.

We've also passed what the tables say would be my "modern" SAT score, since they're recentered the mean twice now since I took it.

Sigh.
posted by dw at 9:34 PM on June 7, 2007


Can you get a 1600 SAT without it being an error-free set of answers? At least in 1982 and thereabouts, an actual 1600 was very rare. I only know one person who got that score of my high school peers, and she was also a National Scholarship winner and was accepted into every elite university to which she applied. (She choose Bryn Mawr and is the feminist lesbian almost-separatist that had such an influence on me and with whom I had a short and doomed love affair. She graduated with a physics degree and then decided to teach high school physics—upon learning this, my response was that, dammit, now I'm never going to fall out of love with her.)

Some things matter more than others. The two most academically successful of my friends from high school both had very good grades and high SATs, but for various reasons went to the crummy state university in our hometown. (In one case, it was because of money. In the other, I'm not sure, exactly, except that her father was also the president of the university.) Both graduated with honors, one summa cum laude, the other magna cum laude. Both got high subject GREs and MCATs. None of that would have counted for that much, though, except that both also acquired a great deal of research experience via coop programs as undergraduates. They each were coauthors on multiple papers—one was a coauthor on eight different papers by graduation. That made the biggest difference and both were accepted into at least half of the prestigious grad schools to which they applied. Both did very well in grad school. (One of them was accepted into Washington University's MD/PhD program, the best in the program at that time.) One of them did very well as a post grad, eventually running his own laboratory and was the lead author published in Nature more than once.

Neither of these people got a perfect score on either their ACTs or SATs, unlike our other friend, Angela. And they went to a crummy state school for their undergrad education. I like to tell that story to people majoring in the sciences by way of telling them that hard work and research experience will get them into the good grad schools. Test scores count for a little bit. Grades count for more. But in the sciences, actual research credentials count the most.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:15 PM on June 7, 2007


None of that shit counts, really, EB.

What counts is awesomeness.

I'm just sayin'....
posted by dersins at 11:07 PM on June 7, 2007


You should go to one of those "make a quiz" sites and build an "awesomeness" quiz.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:37 PM on June 7, 2007


Hi. I was homeless my senior year of high school. My family had moved across country to follow my dad's job (we had grown up, as had the business, outside of LA, but the company was opening a new plant in North Carolina. Tax breaks and such, I suppose), but I refused to go.

I was out late the night before the SAT's (I spent a lot of time at an all-night goth club. I wasn't goth, but it was open and free, so... it goes). That night, I slept in my car in front of my girlfriend's house; assuming she would see me and wake me up. She didn't. Luckily it was a hot enough day, (this was southern California, where it gets muggy shortly after Christmas) that I woke up just in time to take the test.

I think I was doing pretty well, considering I hadn't prepared at all (I spent a lot of my free time pan-handling at gas stations after school. You'd be surprised how generous people are to teenagers. They rarely ever want anything in return).

I went off-site for a smoke during the break (the test was administered at a high school, and even though I was eighteen, they didn't allow smoking on campus). I thought it was a half hour break. It was actually five minutes. It was surprising to come back to the classroom and find that everyone was already busy on the second half of their tests, but I wasn't too concerned.

My parents had already decided that if they were paying for college, I would go to the school that was nearest them (UNC Greensboro, which luckily had a fairly decent computer science program). The aforementioned girlfriend (who actually also ended up being a Bryn Mawr physics graduate, which binds me to EB in a rather uncomfortable way), was moving to the east coast, so I didn't fight my destiny. I would be closer to my love (I did love her, though she very quickly decided she could live without me. She went quite mad, you see). I would of course do my best, as was my way (for the many years before my senior year, I thought that academic achievement was achievement), but there wasn't any particular pressure to succeed.

I think we passed my SAT score about 200 comments ago. But I'm not really sure. I can't remember. It just didn't really matter very much to me. Because I have a huge fucking cock. And in the end, that's all that really matters.
posted by team lowkey at 2:44 AM on June 8, 2007


Because I have a huge fucking cock. And in the end, that's all that really matters.

In other places, too.

People tend to underestimate the large number of widely diverse situations in which having a huge fucking cock can be surprisingly advantageous. This is especially true of the Jews, who don't highly value the huge cock, being somewhat insensitive.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 3:40 AM on June 8, 2007


Plus they believe is it ok to murder non-Jews. Glad we got back on topic!

Hey, don't bogart the kosher popcorn.
posted by languagehat at 6:11 AM on June 8, 2007


*makes beeline for huge bowl of mashed potatoes*
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:38 AM on June 8, 2007


Dude, you're the one that can't spell his name.

Let's hear Omni himself on this matter first, Jess Amin Dada.

*offers thread cubes and sugababes*
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:49 AM on June 8, 2007


Offers thread Sugarcubes
posted by Burhanistan at 8:03 AM on June 8, 2007


*offers threads*
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:15 AM on June 8, 2007


The ouroborous reminds me of what I like to call the "digestive mobius" - wherein one's head is so far up one's ass that it comes back out the mouth again.

Unfortunately, this has happened to my immediate supervisor. It is very very sad. He used to be a nice guy. And now... digestive mobius.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:32 AM on June 8, 2007


I thought it was funny that dios wasn't aware that it's maths in UK English. It makes more sense, as mathematics is plural. American mefites are much more aware of outside-of-the-US cultural stuff than is the average American.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:00 PM on June 7


Well, not to give it away, but I *did* know that. I was just making a joke. I thought I sort of pointed that out with my response in that thread, but maybe I didn't.

Can you get a 1600 SAT without it being an error-free set of answers? At least in 1982 and thereabouts, an actual 1600 was very rare.

Yeah. I can't remember how many you can get wrong, and I'm sure that has changed. At college, I knew at least a dozen other kids who aced it, and most of them had 1450+. The test has become very depreciated at some point.

Neither of these people got a perfect score on either their ACTs or SATs

There is no correlation at all between standardized test performance and school performance in my experience. I had little trouble with any standardized test [can't remember what I got on the PSAT, but it was good enough to be national merit scholar, aced the SAT and got a 178/180 on the LSAT]. But I never did great in grades. I pretty much skated through my schooling with a lot of B averages. My guess is that the standardized test doesn't require any preparation and is just a natural skills test. Whereas in classes, natural ability only takes you so far if you don't put in the work. Ironically, this skill seems very helpful in my career since the ability to perform well on little preparation is a premium. There was this old saw in law school that the "A" students end up teaching, the "C" students are the great attorneys, and the "B" students work for the "C" students. It's obviously an absurd generalization and one that is focused on litigation [it wouldn't apply to transactional law], but the point I always took from that is that the people who study really hard and are really smart get "A"s but end up teachers because "studying really hard" doesn't translate well into the practice of law. The "C" students are probably students who are very smart but put in no effort, and the "B" students are people who are smart, but have to work really hard to get their B. And in the litigation world, if you look who are the real hot shots, its pretty amazing how many of them are the "C" students.
posted by dios at 8:37 AM on June 8, 2007


gnfti, you should know me well enough by now to know I almost always feel like an ass...in this case, though, I've finally gotten my act together and will send some (long promised, long delayed) music your way as soon as I get settled in at the office and have my laptop hooked up.
posted by OmieWise at 9:37 AM on June 8, 2007


Oh, and here again:

GNFTI MAY ALWAYS CALL ME OMNIWISE IF HE WANTS TO.
posted by OmieWise at 9:38 AM on June 8, 2007


Well, not to give it away, but I *did* know that. I was just making a joke. I thought I sort of pointed that out with my response in that thread, but maybe I didn't.

Yeah I figured you knew, but the Australian reference kinda threw me off anyway. So I tried to counter it with a Canadian joke, but it was still all kind of ambiguous.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:40 AM on June 8, 2007


NO, NOT ALLOWED

PUNISHABLE BY HECK

and don't feel too bad; I goaded gnfti into a collaborative recording project that I've totally neglected my end of for forever now
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:41 AM on June 8, 2007


Hey, OxWx, sweet!
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:43 AM on June 8, 2007


Oh, I'm not dissuaded by a bit of heck. And I tend to neglect my end from time to time as well. It's all good. It's all good.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:48 AM on June 8, 2007


Well get it together already! I like the music both of you make. In fact, just last night, Prince's birthday, I had to pause between Purple sides to listen to "The Swedish Academy..." a song that holds up over time, even though the neWs is Well Worn.
posted by OmieWise at 9:54 AM on June 8, 2007


Oh and ZOMG I'm munching on some leftover green olives from some office farewell party for someone upstairs I don't know - and well kick me if they aren't the best olives I have ever eaten. I don't know what they soaked them in - probably some rich vinegar, or possibly angel wee - but dammit, this is divine. I stood outside a few minutes ago sucking one of these sweet babies while the occasional drop of summer rain (which has by now developed into a full-fledged thunderstorm) descended upon me, and I felt alive, I tells ya.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:59 AM on June 8, 2007


I have this creeping sense that my complete lack of appreciation for olives prevents me from every being in any sense European. Hate those things. Yech.

Olive oil, on the other hand...
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:52 AM on June 8, 2007


I have this creeping sense that my complete lack of appreciation for olives...

You and me both, cupcake.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 11:54 AM on June 8, 2007


I used to hate olives until I was well into my thirties, when I went to Greece and got converted. (Same thing with yogurt -- I'd never had the fresh stuff before, just the Dannon crap.) So you kids may have a change of heart!
posted by languagehat at 12:11 PM on June 8, 2007


You and me both, cupcake.

High five! Take that, Europe!

And speaking of cupcakes...
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:15 PM on June 8, 2007


Et tu, jessamyn? Et tu?
posted by OmieWise at 12:34 PM on June 8, 2007


Cupcakes? I'm not gonna try to get a phonetic rendition of "forget about it" down here.
posted by cgc373 at 12:36 PM on June 8, 2007


Et tu, jessamyn? Et tu?

I don't even like mushrooms! My mother swears we are Not Related. The good news is that my palate seems to be continually expanding. I pick up a few new tastes per year [this year: cilantro (in some things), rum drinks and strong cheeses] so it's just a matter of time.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:40 PM on June 8, 2007


my palate seems to be continually expanding

That's one of my favorite things about being a grown-up.
posted by amro at 12:46 PM on June 8, 2007


I had an expanding palate once, but luckily the doctors were able to remove it in time.

Thanks, thanks, I just flew in from Toledo and boy are my arms tired.
posted by OmieWise at 12:50 PM on June 8, 2007


I don't even like mushrooms!

I—

Huh. That's just, that's, that's—

I'm gonna need two and a half of that back, lady.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:56 PM on June 8, 2007


Who are you calling lady, longhair?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 1:00 PM on June 8, 2007


I went to Greece and got converted. (Same thing with yogurt -- I'd never had the fresh stuff before, just the Dannon crap.)

languagehat: this Greek brand is showing up in more places in the US now. Although it might be pig-slop export grade compared to what you can get in Greece, it sure is smooth and delicious. Especially with the honey compartment.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:06 PM on June 8, 2007


Who you calling longhair, leghair?
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:12 PM on June 8, 2007


Mushrooms as they appear in most supermarkets and restaurant food (portobello, crimini, those stupid styrofoam-y white ones) are pretty blah.

Fresh, seasonal mushrooms (morels, chanterelles, etc.) n the other hand, fucking rule.
posted by dersins at 1:16 PM on June 8, 2007


This one time I went to the checkout counter carrying a portobello mushroom, and the clerk didn't even know what it was. No shit.
posted by OmieWise at 1:22 PM on June 8, 2007 [1 favorite]


And, not that anyone cares, but I'm bowing out and going to New Mexico. Finish strong.
posted by OmieWise at 1:23 PM on June 8, 2007


New Mexico? Have some frybread and some chile for me. I prefer green this time of year, so, uh, make that happen for me, will you?
posted by dersins at 1:33 PM on June 8, 2007


Somewhat similar to The Hat, it was a trip to Italy that got me to appreciate olives. Still working on strong cheeses though, and mushrooms are generally teh nast.
posted by klangklangston at 2:48 PM on June 8, 2007


I find that my proximity to Europe or to expensive restaurants has a direct relationship to the expansiveness of my palate. Most of the time, my flavor preferences are based on the bland, over-processed food readily available here. Cheeses are a great example: I'll eat almost anything in France, but I'm a provolone and cheddar guy here in the US.

Wow. I think I just talked myself into a fancy dinner tonight. Thanks mefi!
posted by anotherpanacea at 3:17 PM on June 8, 2007


I have this creeping sense that my complete lack of appreciation for olives prevents me from every being in any sense European. Hate those things. Yech.

I love olives, always have. And whenever we go to the local chi-chi store with the olive bar, my three year old daughter insists we buy "chocolate olives" -- pitted kalamatas. She eats them out of hand.

I don't even like mushrooms!

You lived here in the Upper Left Hand Corner for HOW LONG?

That's like living in France but hating wine.

This one time I went to the checkout counter carrying a portobello mushroom, and the clerk didn't even know what it was. No shit.

That happened to me about a month ago with a leek. WTF are they teaching these kids nowadays? They better get off my lawn, too.
posted by dw at 3:25 PM on June 8, 2007


languagehat: this Greek brand is showing up in more places in the US now. Although it might be pig-slop export grade compared to what you can get in Greece, it sure is smooth and delicious. Especially with the honey compartment.

Yeah, I discovered that brand recently and it's quite good. Unfortunately it costs an arm and a leg, so until I stop being so poor I'll have to forego the pleasure. (That's one thing I miss about Astoria: great Greek groceries with fresh yogurt and two dozen different kinds of olives.)

Enjoy New Mexico, Omni!
posted by languagehat at 3:32 PM on June 8, 2007


Er, sorry, I meant Otzi. Silly me!
posted by languagehat at 3:41 PM on June 8, 2007


Hey Olliewise, since you are going to be down in New Mexico, you should drop by for a drink or some apple juice.
posted by dios at 3:55 PM on June 8, 2007


Do SAT tests ask you about food preferences? Cause that would make it much easier. "I LIKE HOT DOGS" = Northwestern. You see, if you like hot dogs, then you're an antisemite, or something. Isn't that what this thread is about?
posted by Salmonberry at 4:11 PM on June 8, 2007


I like some hotdogs, but not others.

What does that say about my level of antisemitism?

Also, what does it say about what college I should have gone to?
posted by dersins at 4:14 PM on June 8, 2007


Also, for reasons I'm not prepared to divulge, I'm really glad my prior comment was #1490.
posted by dersins at 4:15 PM on June 8, 2007


Also, I'm posting an other comment to prevent cortex from making another Columbus joke.
posted by dersins at 4:16 PM on June 8, 2007


"an other". Good job, me.
posted by dersins at 4:16 PM on June 8, 2007


Hot dogs are good stuff. Much better than Salmon. Or berries. But nearly as tasty as Salmonberry! RAWR!
posted by dios at 4:25 PM on June 8, 2007


In Fourteen Hundred Ninety Five
Columbus skinned dersins alive

posted by cortex (staff) at 5:03 PM on June 8, 2007


Columbus can suck it.
posted by dersins at 5:09 PM on June 8, 2007


PETER FALK IS A GOOD AND DECENT MAN
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:18 PM on June 8, 2007


You've clearly never seen "Wings of Desire."
posted by dersins at 5:21 PM on June 8, 2007


Or "The Great Race."
posted by dersins at 5:21 PM on June 8, 2007


Or 1500.
posted by dersins at 5:21 PM on June 8, 2007


Didn't he kill his wife?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:22 PM on June 8, 2007


Who, this guy? Yeah, probably.
posted by dersins at 5:28 PM on June 8, 2007


Was his wife an antisemite?

dios, word has it I am delectable!

and rich in beta-carotene, which is more important that some damn SAT score.
posted by Salmonberry at 6:02 PM on June 8, 2007


"an other". Good job, me.

Hey, do any of you say "a whole nother"? As in, "Feel free to finish that; there is a whole nother jar of peanut butter in the cupboard."

me neither
posted by Rock Steady at 9:37 PM on June 8, 2007


No, but your nother's whole does seem to come up a lot in conversation.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 4:58 AM on June 9, 2007


I say "a whole nother" and I'm not ashamed to admit it.

Shit, I missed another double-zero occasion because of this stupid need to sleep.
posted by languagehat at 7:34 AM on June 9, 2007


I think we need to go further. I think we need to generalize and entemplate the 'nother' structure. Consider:

- a whole nother
- a partial nother
- a couple nothers
- nother and a half
- no nother
- notherer and notherer (said Alice)
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:03 AM on June 9, 2007


What about coding? NaNother?
posted by dw at 1:50 PM on June 9, 2007


Time's running out! Gotta. Add. To. The. Comment. Count!
posted by Kattullus at 9:36 PM on June 9, 2007


What are you talking about, Kattullus? We've got days left until closure, unless Matt actually launched that Longboat Detection and Mitigation daemon he and pb were talking about. And I'm pretty sure the whole LDM thing was just bullsh—
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:31 PM on June 9, 2007


« Older Paulsc loves America.... | I noticed that the meetup ment... Newer »

This thread is over 30 days old, and has been closed for archival purposes.



























.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:32 PM on June 9, 2007


Dun't do much in My Comments though, do it?
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:36 PM on June 9, 2007


So, how close are we to the record now?
posted by dw at 1:07 AM on June 10, 2007


Also, longboats are overrated. The Basques didn't need them, and got to and from the New World before the Vikings. They also sailed to the moon and the center of the earth long before the Vikings drafted Randy Moss or appeared on Prairie Home Companion.
posted by dw at 1:11 AM on June 10, 2007


I am adding to comment count to proclaim that I was just gifted a set of excellent knives! Anyone need their peppers julienned? I am also available for your run-of-the-mill slicing and dicing.
posted by anotherpanacea at 5:39 AM on June 10, 2007


They also sailed to the moon and the center of the earth.

Plus tasty little eels, excellent floppy chapeaux and that crazy language full of X-es. I fully support a Basque derail. To the moon!
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:14 AM on June 10, 2007


Trask on Basque.

I too support a Basque derail.
posted by languagehat at 6:53 AM on June 10, 2007


basque cask
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:58 AM on June 10, 2007


Basque mask
posted by languagehat at 8:39 AM on June 10, 2007


Most Basques who immigrated to America settled in California, but Idaho has a sizable number -- 0.5% of their total population.

Top Basque populations in the 2000 census:
1. California- 20,868
2. Idaho- 6,637
3. Nevada- 6,096
4. Washington- 2,665
5. Oregon- 2,627
posted by dw at 9:44 AM on June 10, 2007


It does seem odd a people known for their sea prowness end up settling in a state that's an day's drive from the ocean.
posted by dw at 9:48 AM on June 10, 2007


I once did an independent study on improvisational poetry. For it I read a book on Basque bertsoa, which is a big frickin' deal in Basque country. Incidentally, I had to get the book from the library at Mt. Holyoke. I don't know if you've been to that campus but it looks like it sprang whole from the fevered imagination of H. P. Lovecraft, all ivy-covered fake-Oxbridge New England eeriness. Anyway, I arrive at the library, searching for a book about spontaneous incantations in a language older than time! only to find that there's an open sarcophagus in the middle of the room where the reference desk is. I am told that the book can be found on a floor that doesn't have a number, that I'll have to go on the ricketiest elevator I've ever had the stark terror to ride on and just sort of jump out between floors if the eldritch knowledege that I seek is to be mine. So yeah... it was a good book.
posted by Kattullus at 10:25 AM on June 10, 2007


I am told that the book can be found on a floor that doesn't have a number, that I'll have to go on the ricketiest elevator I've ever had the stark terror to ride on and just sort of jump out between floors if the eldritch knowledege that I seek is to be mine.

Is that the elevator with the light switch on the inside at MoHoCoFoWo? That was my favorite elevator!
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:41 AM on June 10, 2007 [1 favorite]


I don't know anything about the Basques at all, except for the fact that this (slightly NSFW) is the #4 result for a google image search for Basque.

So, uh, I'm in favor of Basques.
posted by dersins at 10:46 AM on June 10, 2007


Basquetball

This thread hasn't been floating to the top of my recent activity, though I'm sure it will now. Is there some threshold to keep longboat threads out of (relatively) early commentators' Activity pages?
posted by carsonb at 11:42 AM on June 10, 2007


In the Viking days of yore, a cranberry might appear here, suggesting greyer waters.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 6:32 AM on June 11, 2007


the boat
she still float
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:34 AM on June 11, 2007


In the Viking days of yore

By which I presume you mean literal Vikings.
posted by languagehat at 8:07 AM on June 11, 2007


I heard there was a thread about that.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:11 AM on June 11, 2007


Literal cranberry ex machina too. However, the grey waters are symbolic of green pastures.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 8:19 AM on June 11, 2007


Symbolism is for suckers.
posted by dersins at 8:36 AM on June 11, 2007


WIGGUM SCHISM: SEMIOTICS OR IDIOTICS?
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:48 AM on June 11, 2007


There's a difference?
posted by dersins at 8:53 AM on June 11, 2007


I knew a guy who had a PhD in semiotics or something like it. He insisted that he was a doctor. Nobody addressed him as Dr.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:11 AM on June 11, 2007


Semiotics has more letters. And Umberto Eco, so, you know, fuck you.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:20 AM on June 11, 2007


It's very unseemly of you to keep begging me to have sexual intercourse with you.

Also, aren't you afraid your wife will see you?
posted by dersins at 11:12 AM on June 11, 2007


Get fit and spry.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:15 AM on June 11, 2007


Meat bits and fries.
posted by dersins at 11:21 AM on June 11, 2007


Chuck, too.
posted by dersins at 11:23 AM on June 11, 2007


the boat
she still float


Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other’s yarns - and even convictions.
posted by kosem at 12:11 PM on June 11, 2007


I'm very sad that this thread has died prematurely. It has one more day of natural life—one more day, people!—and you can't even muster a few more comments to keep it going. No longboat for you! I am breathing very slowly and deeply and seeing everything through an extremely red mist.
posted by languagehat at 7:40 AM on June 12, 2007


*mustards a few comments*
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:45 AM on June 12, 2007


*tries to ketchup*
posted by dersins at 7:47 AM on June 12, 2007


(although I don't exactly relish making comments for comments' sake)
posted by dersins at 7:48 AM on June 12, 2007


Q: How do you describe a field of nuclear equines?
A: Horseradish.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:58 AM on June 12, 2007


What did the mayonnaise say to the fridge?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:05 AM on June 12, 2007


Close the door, I'm dressing!
posted by amro at 8:08 AM on June 12, 2007


Three tomatoes are walking down the street: a poppa tomato, a momma tomato, and a little baby tomato. Baby tomato starts lagging behind. Poppa tomato gets angry, goes over to the baby tomato, and smooshes him … and says “Catch up”.
posted by kosem at 8:15 AM on June 12, 2007


A man goes to a pyschiatrist, and says, "Doc, you gotta help me. Everything looks green to me, and smells like brine!"

The shrink scratches his chin and replies, "well, sounds like you're in a pickle..."
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:17 AM on June 12, 2007


That's more like it!

*breathes faster, mist dissipates*
posted by languagehat at 8:35 AM on June 12, 2007




Q: What's bright red and lives with Peewee Herman?
A: Maraschino Chairy.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:44 AM on June 12, 2007


Why is a mouse when it spins?
posted by dersins at 9:10 AM on June 12, 2007


Three guys go into a restaurant. Waiter comes over to take their drink orders. First two order egg creams. Third one says "I'll have an egg-cream, and make sure it's in a clean glass."

Waiter returns with the drinks. "Now who ordered the clean glass?"
posted by kosem at 9:25 AM on June 12, 2007


Komst neer uit de berg Komst neer uit de berg
Ik heb de hoogte en machtig gezienberg Ik heb de hoogte en machtig gezienberg
Ik zal opnieuw someday gaanberg Ik zal opnieuw someday gaanberg
Maar voor nu neer kom ikberg Maar voor nu neer kom ikberg
Komst neer uit de bergberg Komst neer uit de bergberg
Ik heb de lofty glorie gezienberg Ik heb de lofty glorie gezienberg
Ik zal opnieuw someday gaanberg Ik zal opnieuw someday gaanberg
Maar voor nu neer kom ikberg Maar voor nu neer kom ikberg
Ik heb hun informatie gezienberg Ik heb hun informatie gezienberg
Aan de lichtere kant van dumbnessberg Aan de lichtere kant van dumbnessberg
Ik heb de nieuwe statistieken gehoordberg Ik heb de nieuwe statistieken gehoordberg
En ter plaatse het stampenberg En ter plaatse het stampenberg
Langzaam het oprapen van rockslideberg Langzaam het oprapen van rockslideberg
Één ding altijd schijnt duidelijkberg Één ding altijd schijnt duidelijkberg
Als de klim teveel wordtberg Als de klim teveel wordtberg
Ik kan me altijd omdraaienberg Ik kan me altijd omdraaienberg
Het ontwaken van mijn sluimerberg Het ontwaken van mijn sluimerberg
Om een andere verkeerd te begrijpenberg Om een andere verkeerd te begrijpenberg
Hoewel zij het terrafirma roepenberg Hoewel zij het terrafirma roepenberg
Het lost onder mijn voeten opberg Het lost onder mijn voeten opberg
Het kijken door een stapel van huisvuilberg Het kijken door een stapel van huisvuilberg
Voor één of ander waardeloos stuk van documentberg Voor één of ander waardeloos stuk van documentberg
Dat daar verborgen voor meberg Dat daar verborgen voor meberg
Om betekenis aan mijn dag te gevenberg Om betekenis aan mijn dag te gevenberg
Het dalen naar de woestijnberg Het dalen naar de woestijnberg
Aan de vuile vuile woestijnberg Aan de vuile vuile woestijnberg
Ik zal door het zand kruipenberg Ik zal door het zand kruipenberg
Voor minstens een paardagenberg Voor minstens een paardagenberg
Het dalen naar de woestijnberg Het dalen naar de woestijnberg
ther zijn dingen owrth vermijdendberg ther zijn dingen owrth vermijdendberg
En het maakt me dwars altijdberg En het maakt me dwars altijdberg
Wanneer die dingen op mijn manier krijgen.berg Wanneer die dingen op mijn manier krijgen.berg
Komst neer uit de bergberg Komst neer uit de bergberg
Ik heb de hoogte en machtig gezienberg Ik heb de hoogte en machtig gezienberg
Ik zal opnieuw someday gaanberg Ik zal opnieuw someday gaanberg
Maar voor nu neer kom ikberg Maar voor nu neer kom ikberg
Komst neer uit de bergberg Komst neer uit de bergberg
Ik heb de lofty glorie gezienberg Ik heb de lofty glorie gezienberg
Ik zal opnieuw someday gaanberg Ik zal opnieuw someday gaanberg
Maar voor nu neer komberg Maar voor nu neer komberg

posted by and hosted from Uranus at 10:21 AM on June 12, 2007


A guy walks into the doctor's office with asparagus in one nostril, a celery stick in the other nostril, and carrots in both his ears. The doctor says "Well, I can see the problem already. You're not eating right".
posted by team lowkey at 10:28 AM on June 12, 2007


Wow, and hosted from Uranus. That's just... well... something.

Something irritating, that is.
posted by dersins at 10:33 AM on June 12, 2007


Let's try to end on exactly 1600.
posted by amro at 12:45 PM on June 12, 2007


End?
posted by kosem at 12:54 PM on June 12, 2007


It'll never end. This fucker's flying forever. FOREVER.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:57 PM on June 12, 2007


Well, for another 26 hours, anyway.
posted by dersins at 1:02 PM on June 12, 2007


You're right, dersins. My beautiful non-breaking-spaces were waylaid by omni's space eater. F'ing irritatating as f, it is. Is it new?
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 1:03 PM on June 12, 2007


Wait, doesn't it close today, in about two hours?
posted by amro at 1:07 PM on June 12, 2007


 <O
  ( \
   X
8==========D

   <O
    ( \
     X
8==========D

     <O
      ( \
       X
8==========D

        <O
&nbsp        ( \
          X
8==========D

           <O
            ( \
             X
8==========D

               <O
                ( \
                 X
8==========D


                      \ | /
8==========D
                      <O
                       ( \
posted by dios at 1:08 PM on June 12, 2007


DOH! It messed up!

/me cries


That was piece de resistance!
posted by dios at 1:09 PM on June 12, 2007


*resists*
posted by dersins at 1:17 PM on June 12, 2007


"30 days" is an unlikely relative term, amro. If I remember correctly, we still have 25 hours or so. Of course, I've been wrong before.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 1:22 PM on June 12, 2007


Several clicks of the "< < older" link later, I have come to the conclusion that this thread does in fact have a little less than 26 hours to live.
posted by dersins at 1:28 PM on June 12, 2007


26 HOURS TO LIVE

Thread 14194 races frantically through the streets of the dark city, losing hope but still looking for some way out of the DOOM foretold by Doctor Uranus, hearing rumors of a magic escape hatch... if only the longboat can be found in time...
posted by languagehat at 1:34 PM on June 12, 2007


 <O
  ( \
   X
8==========D

   <O
    ( \
     X
8==========D

      <O
       ( \
        X
8==========D


         <O
          ( \
           X
8==========D


             <O
              ( \
               X
8==========D

                <O
                 ( \
                  X
8==========D



                     \ | /
8==========D
                      <O
                       ( \
posted by dios at 1:36 PM on June 12, 2007


hehlocaust
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:39 PM on June 12, 2007


Leonardo even had to paint the Mona Lisa twice.
posted by dios at 1:42 PM on June 12, 2007


i don't get it.

it's a bird, right?

on a dick, right?

and then it falls off?

and then the dick is shiny?

why is the dick shiny?

has it been polished?

or maybe buffed?

i don't get it.

dios?
posted by dersins at 1:42 PM on June 12, 2007


I think it's static electricity, you know rub it and it sparks....
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 1:49 PM on June 12, 2007


Thread 14194 races frantically through the streets of the dark city, losing hope but still looking for some way out of the DOOM foretold by Doctor Uranus, hearing rumors of a magic escape hatch... if only the longboat can be found in time...

Like this?

[The best scene in an otherwise bad movie. Will Begby make the boat? Will we? Will a horde of superfast undead Brian Bs run us down? Will they?]

posted by kosem at 2:00 PM on June 12, 2007


I move that we move into the Wiggum thread when this one closes.

IM IN UR WIGGUM
HATIN ON TA JOOS
posted by Kattullus at 2:07 PM on June 12, 2007


It would feel somehow unseemly to move into a blue thread. I have no reason for thinking or feeling this, but not having a reason (or being unable to explain myself properly) has never stopped me before, so I see no reason why it should stop me this time.
posted by dersins at 2:14 PM on June 12, 2007


So this page is 1.6 megs at this point in time? And we have about 1550 comments.

Hmm... wasn't that one meta thread like 2600 comments with gifs and shit in it? How big is that? I'd check, but I don't want to fry my server.
posted by dios at 2:26 PM on June 12, 2007


The wiggum thread has too many eyeballs. We could never fit all those pod people in the longboat. Now if cortex had thought ahead left the wiggum MeTa thread open, that would have made a fine port of call. Hey... maybe that thread could "somehow" be reopened. I've heard tale of such wizardly magicks being performed by our members of this very crew...
posted by team lowkey at 2:31 PM on June 12, 2007


Dear AxMe,

I've been having a real problem lately. When attempting to type out a sentence, I often skip words or change direction before I get to the end, making it very difficult for the reader to parse. Am I a literal or a metaphorical viking? God hope us.
posted by team lowkey at 2:49 PM on June 12, 2007


Dear team lowkey:

So sorry, but you're not a viking of any variety. You put out an insufficiency of BTU's, and your stainless steel exterior is just a facade.

I think you may be a Kenmore, actually.

Love,

AxMe
posted by dersins at 2:57 PM on June 12, 2007


I may be lacking in output, but I'm stainless through and through. I think I'm a Bosch.
posted by team lowkey at 3:17 PM on June 12, 2007


Not a Hobart?
posted by dersins at 3:27 PM on June 12, 2007


I don't know what a Hobart is.

I'm probably just one of those ubiquitous little Weber grills... left out in the yard for ages... rusting away... clinging to the hope that some new tenant will discover me... and will be desparate enough to clean me up, rather than spend twenty bucks on a new one... so that I might burn again.
It's so cold...

so cold.
posted by team lowkey at 4:07 PM on June 12, 2007


Hobart is the capital of Tasmania.

Duh.
posted by dersins at 4:10 PM on June 12, 2007


*bogarts the fried server*
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 5:17 PM on June 12, 2007


*serves the fried bogart*
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:35 PM on June 12, 2007


so cold.

But not Sub-Zero?
posted by dw at 5:39 PM on June 12, 2007


Gray thread in the morning, longboats take warning
Gray thread at night, longboats' delight
posted by dw at 5:42 PM on June 12, 2007


OK, this is my last contribution to this thread. I'm making like a Basque and separating.

I just want to tell you good luck. We're all counting on you.
posted by dw at 5:45 PM on June 12, 2007


This is my last contribution to this thread.
posted by languagehat at 6:35 PM on June 12, 2007


Wait, no it's not.
posted by languagehat at 6:35 PM on June 12, 2007


I'm going to bed. When I get up tomorrow, somebody better have made a kickass Comment #1600.
posted by languagehat at 6:58 PM on June 12, 2007


Seems highly unlikely.
posted by dersins at 8:00 PM on June 12, 2007


Seriously. It's been a good run, but 1600? That's Pennsylvania Avenue madness, right there.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:29 PM on June 12, 2007


Send your kidney to:
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:49 PM on June 12, 2007


[no match]
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:52 PM on June 12, 2007


Despite our long standing feud, it only seems fitting that Kattallus takes post 1600. Unless of course cortex wanted to put up an image of Wesley Snipes as a final huzzah. That would also be fitting. Perhaps you can find an image of Wesley Snipes hating a Jew?
posted by team lowkey at 8:52 PM on June 12, 2007




Júhú! Ég fékk sextánhundraðasta kommentið! Þokkalega rokk! Jæja, ef þráðurinn nær ekki sextán þúsund kommentum, þá er þetta ágætis uppbót.
posted by Kattullus at 8:56 PM on June 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


Oh, sure, give it to him. Then he posts some of that goddamned gibberish.
posted by klangklangston at 7:37 AM on June 13, 2007


Kkllllaaaaaaaannnnnngggg!!!!
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 7:41 AM on June 13, 2007


Hey, we're approaching my SAT score!
posted by dersins at 8:04 AM on June 13, 2007


I was going to post my SAT and ACT scores, then I decided that despite the fact that they were comparitively high, they weren't impressive next to the man that is dios.
posted by klangklangston at 8:44 AM on June 13, 2007


dersins, man, just because you took it three times doesn't mean the scores are cumulative.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:52 AM on June 13, 2007


I got bonus points for general awesomeness.

And acute deadsexiness.
posted by dersins at 8:57 AM on June 13, 2007


Yeah, I regret my Kattullus endorsement. I should have known. But still, klang, I expected better from you. Show a little restraint. What will we end on now?

For those that don't speak alphalanche, here's what Kattallus said:

Yoo hoo! I fucked comment sixteen-hundred! Polka rock! Yee-ha, I'm prowlin' near icky sexy pooz-hound Joementum, pa here better agitate robots.
posted by team lowkey at 10:35 AM on June 13, 2007


"But still, klang, I expected better from you. Show a little restraint. What will we end on now?"

Oh, 1628 or so...
posted by klangklangston at 11:21 AM on June 13, 2007


I have faith that we can make 1650.

I would say 1700, but it takes about three minutes to load this damn thread every time I want to make a comment...
posted by dersins at 11:37 AM on June 13, 2007


What do we have? About 3 and 1/2 more hours? We could make 1700.

1628 sounds more likely.
posted by team lowkey at 11:45 AM on June 13, 2007


Yeah, I've never been one for much ambition.
posted by klangklangston at 11:53 AM on June 13, 2007


Tell us something we don't already know, klangklangston...
posted by dersins at 11:58 AM on June 13, 2007


And yet, I got a job!
posted by klangklangston at 12:00 PM on June 13, 2007


For $5k more than they initially offered, no less. Booyah!
posted by klangklangston at 12:03 PM on June 13, 2007


Yeah, I've never been one for much ambition.
posted by klangklangston at 2:53 PM on June 13 [+] [!]


That's right, klangklangston! I'm really glad to see that you finally understand that your lack of desire to paddle this damned boat. . . wait, what's that? I'm just getting something . . . this just in:

And yet, I got a job!
posted by klangklangston at 3:00 PM on June 13 [+] [!]


SEVEN MINUTES, ladies and gentlemen! Not a new world record, not a new MeFi record, hell not even a new klangklangston record, but still a pretty impressive turnaround.
posted by kosem at 12:10 PM on June 13, 2007


Last post?
posted by cgc373 at 12:19 PM on June 13, 2007


1700 isn't so far. It's possible. Don't give up!
posted by cgc373 at 12:21 PM on June 13, 2007


heh. This thread still has about 3 hours till it goes bad. kosem was making a reference to something klang said about dios in today's MeTa thread about konolia. Another false alarm.

You longboaters are wacky.
posted by carsonb at 12:23 PM on June 13, 2007


What's a longboat?
posted by dersins at 12:27 PM on June 13, 2007


What this deal about only having a a couple hours left?
posted by dios at 12:27 PM on June 13, 2007


Ya gotta believe! We can do it! Sis boom bah!
posted by languagehat at 12:29 PM on June 13, 2007


You did what to your sis now?
posted by dersins at 12:32 PM on June 13, 2007


Just for clarity's sake, it was not klangklangston, it was The Bellman. Not sure if kk even said anything about it.

I just like that this longboat levity (no, I'm sorry, of course it's deadly serious) is happening at the same time as the referenced shitfest. Then again, this thread was a shitfest. There's something lovely and soldierly about traipsing about on the smoldering aftermath of a flamewar..maybe we line the two up and make the jump?
posted by kosem at 12:32 PM on June 13, 2007


"kosem was making a reference to something klang said about dios in today's MeTa thread about konolia."

Yeah, except I didn't say that. Hell, I don't think I even quoted it.
posted by klangklangston at 12:33 PM on June 13, 2007


Apologies to klangklangston, and I offer this helmet full of beer to make up for my gaff.
posted by carsonb at 12:35 PM on June 13, 2007


maybe we line the two up and make the jump?

Only if the other one first degenerates into a discussion of the relative prowess of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

And by "degenerates" I mean "becomes totally awesome."
posted by dersins at 12:35 PM on June 13, 2007


Your kind of "degeneration" corrupts the youth, dersins, and leads to somebody having to drink a helmet full of hemlock to make up their sis's boom bah. It's unseemly.
posted by cgc373 at 12:41 PM on June 13, 2007


Next time, just remember Laura Bush is something's sister, mother or daughter.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 12:43 PM on June 13, 2007


I've been corrupting the youth for decades.

And it never stops being fun.
posted by dersins at 12:45 PM on June 13, 2007


SEND MORE BEER!
posted by klangklangston at 1:01 PM on June 13, 2007


And obviously, klang, I was not directing anything towards you at all...just making fun of the other thread and nodding at the discord.
posted by kosem at 1:03 PM on June 13, 2007


Oh, yeah. like you need any more beer....
posted by dersins at 1:03 PM on June 13, 2007


Longboat chug...
posted by kosem at 1:06 PM on June 13, 2007


We're centuries past Moses Maimonides and much closer now to the beginning of the Manchu dynasty.
posted by klangklangston at 1:08 PM on June 13, 2007


Or shit, dare we hope for 1648?
posted by klangklangston at 1:09 PM on June 13, 2007


Fu Manchu dynasty...
posted by dersins at 1:11 PM on June 13, 2007


"And obviously, klang, I was not directing anything towards you at all...just making fun of the other thread and nodding at the discord."

Yeah, I wasn't worried.

"Longboat chug..."

Is that a warhammer dude?
posted by klangklangston at 1:11 PM on June 13, 2007


Going to lunch. Stupid clients. I damn well better be back in 2 hours and six minutes...
posted by dersins at 1:12 PM on June 13, 2007


I gotta get moustache wax.
posted by klangklangston at 1:12 PM on June 13, 2007


Man, it would be so much cooler to be called a Cavalier than a Roundhead.
posted by klangklangston at 1:15 PM on June 13, 2007


One comment too early for Roundhead citation accuracy! Anyway, it's Cromwell coming soon...
posted by klangklangston at 1:16 PM on June 13, 2007


Is that a warhammer dude?

It's one of the first things that comes up when you imagegoogle "viking chug" and then head over to this very mildly amusing page. They are these, apparently.
posted by kosem at 1:16 PM on June 13, 2007


I don't mind the New Model Army, but I didn't know they were going to put me in the goon squad.
posted by klangklangston at 1:17 PM on June 13, 2007


Ach. I conflated Costello with some other random pseudopunkers.
posted by klangklangston at 1:20 PM on June 13, 2007


Iä! Shub-Niggurath! The Black Goat of the Woods with a Thousand Young!
posted by Kattullus at 1:21 PM on June 13, 2007


Haha. Awesome miniature vikings!
posted by klangklangston at 1:21 PM on June 13, 2007


1648: The Avalon Project at Yale Law School

Treaty of Westphalia; October 24, 1648

Peace Treaty between the Holy Roman Emperor and
the King of France and their respective Allies.

In the name of the most holy and individual Trinity: Be it known to all, and every one whom it may concern, or to whom in any manner it may belong, That for many Years past, Discords and Civil Divisions being stir'd up in the Roman Empire, which increas'd to such a degree, that not only all Germany, but also the neighbouring Kingdoms, and France particularly, have been involv'd in the Disorders of a long and cruel War: And in the first place, between the most Serene and most Puissant Prince and Lord, Ferdinand the Second, of famous Memory, elected Roman Emperor, always August, King of Germany, Hungary, Bohemia, Dalmatia, Croatia, Slavonia, Arch-Duke of Austria, Duke of Burgundy, Brabant, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola, Marquiss of Moravia, Duke of Luxemburgh, the Higher and Lower Silesia, of Wirtemburg and Teck, Prince of Suabia, Count of Hapsburg, Tirol, Kyburg and Goritia, Marquiss of the Sacred Roman Empire, Lord of Burgovia, of the Higher and Lower Lusace, of the Marquisate of Slavonia, of Port Naon and Salines, with his Allies and Adherents on one side; and the most Serene, and the most Puissant Prince, Lewis the Thirteenth, most Christian King of France and Navarre, with his Allies and Adherents on the other side. And after their Decease, between the most Serene and Puissant Prince and Lord, Ferdinand the Third, elected Roman Emperor, always August, King of Germany, Hungary, Bohemia, Dalmatia, Croatia, Slavonia, Arch-Duke of Austria, Duke of Burgundy, Brabant, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola, Marquiss of Moravia, Duke of Luxemburg, of the Higher and Lower Silesia, of Wirtemburg and Teck, Prince of Suabia, Count of Hapsburg, Tirol, Kyburg and Goritia, Marquiss of the Sacred Roman Empire, Burgovia, the Higher and Lower Lusace, Lord of the Marquisate of Slavonia, of Port Naon and Salines, with his Allies and Adherents on the one side; and the most Serene and most Puissant Prince and Lord, Lewis the Fourteenth, most Christian King of France and Navarre, with his Allies and Adherents on the other side: from whence ensu'd great Effusion of Christian Blood, and the Desolation of several Provinces. It has at last happen'd, by the effect of Divine Goodness, seconded by the Endeavours of the most Serene Republick of Venice, who in this sad time, when all Christendom is imbroil'd, has not ceas'd to contribute its Counsels for the publick Welfare and Tranquillity; so that on the side, and the other, they have form'd Thoughts of an universal Peace. And for this purpose, by a mutual Agreement and Covenant of both Partys, in the year of our Lord 1641. the 25th of December, N.S. or the 15th O.S. it was resolv'd at Hamburgh, to hold an Assembly of Plenipotentiary Ambassadors, who should render themselves at Munster and Osnabrug in Westphalia the 11th of July, N.S. or the 1st of the said month O.S. in the year 1643. The Plenipotentiary Ambassadors on the one side, and the other, duly establish'd, appearing at the prefixt time, and on the behalf of his Imperial Majesty, the most illustrious and most excellent Lord, Maximilian Count of Trautmansdorf and Weinsberg, Baron of Gleichenberg, Neustadt, Negan, Burgau, and Torzenbach, Lord of Teinitz, Knight of the Golden Fleece, Privy Counsellor and Chamberlain to his Imperial Sacred Majesty, and Steward of his Houshold; the Lord John Lewis, Count of Nassau, Catzenellebogen, Vianden, and Dietz, Lord of Bilstein, Privy Counsellor to the Emperor, and Knight of the Golden Fleece; Monsieur Isaac Volmamarus, Doctor of Law, Counsellor, and President in the Chamber of the most Serene Lord Arch-Duke Ferdinand Charles. And on the behalf of the most Christian King, the most eminent Prince and Lord, Henry of Orleans, Duke of Longueville, and Estouteville, Prince and Sovereign Count of Neuschaftel, Count of Dunois and Tancerville, Hereditary Constable of Normandy, Governor and Lieutenant-General of the same Province, Captain of the Cent Hommes d'Arms, and Knight of the King's Orders, &c. as also the most illustrious and most excellent Lords, Claude de Mesmes, Count d'Avaux, Commander of the said King's Orders, one of the Superintendents of the Finances, and Minister of the Kingdom of France &c. and Abel Servien, Count la Roche of Aubiers, also one of the Ministers of the Kingdom of France. And by the Mediation and Interposition of the most illustrious and most excellent Ambassador and Senator of Venice, Aloysius Contarini Knight, who for the space of five Years, or thereabouts, with great Diligence, and a Spirit intirely impartial, has been inclin'd to be a Mediator in these Affairs. After having implor'd the Divine Assistance, and receiv'd a reciprocal Communication of Letters, Commissions, and full Powers, the Copys of which are inserted at the end of this Treaty, in the presence and with the consent of the Electors of the Sacred Roman Empire, the other Princes and States, to the Glory of God, and the Benefit of the Christian World, the following Articles have been agreed on and consented to, and the same run thus.

I.

That there shall be a Christian and Universal Peace, and a perpetual, true, and sincere Amity, between his Sacred Imperial Majesty, and his most Christian Majesty; as also, between all and each of the Allies, and Adherents of his said Imperial Majesty, the House of Austria, and its Heirs, and Successors; but chiefly between the Electors, Princes, and States of the Empire on the one side; and all and each of the Allies of his said Christian Majesty, and all their Heirs and Successors, chiefly between the most Serene Queen and Kingdom of Swedeland, the Electors respectively, the Princes and States of the Empire, on the other part. That this Peace and Amity be observ'd and cultivated with such a Sincerity and Zeal, that each Party shall endeavour to procure the Benefit, Honour and Advantage of the other; that thus on all sides they may see this Peace and Friendship in the Roman Empire, and the Kingdom of France flourish, by entertaining a good and faithful Neighbourhood.

II.

That there shall be on the one side and the other a perpetual Oblivion, Amnesty, or Pardon of all that has been committed since the beginning of these Troubles, in what place, or what manner soever the Hostilitys have been practis'd, in such a manner, that no body, under any pretext whatsoever, shall practice any Acts of Hostility, entertain any Enmity, or cause any Trouble to each other; neither as to Persons, Effects and Securitys, neither of themselves or by others, neither privately nor openly, neither directly nor indirectly, neither under the colour of Right, nor by the way of Deed, either within or without the extent of the Empire, notwithstanding all Covenants made before to the contrary: That they shall not act, or permit to be acted, any wrong or injury to any whatsoever; but that all that has pass'd on the one side, and the other, as well before as during the War, in Words, Writings, and Outrageous Actions, in Violences, Hostilitys, Damages and Expences, without any respect to Persons or Things, shall be entirely abolish'd in such a manner that all that might be demanded of, or pretended to, by each other on that behalf, shall be bury'd in eternal Oblivion.

III.

And that a reciprocal Amity between the Emperor, and the Most Christian King, the Electors, Princes and States of the Empire, may be maintain'd so much the more firm and sincere (to say nothing at present of the Article of Security, which will be mention'd hereafter) the one shall never assist the present or future Enemys of the other under any Title or Pretence whatsoever, either with Arms, Money, Soldiers, or any sort of Ammunition; nor no one, who is a Member of this Pacification, shall suffer any Enemys Troops to retire thro' or sojourn in his Country.

IV.

That the Circle of Burgundy shall be and continue a Member of the Empire, after the Disputes between France and Spain (comprehended in this Treaty) shall be terminated. That nevertheless, neither the Emperor, nor any of the States of the Empire, shall meddle with the Wars which are now on foot between them. That if for the future any Dispute arises between these two Kingdoms, the abovesaid reciprocal Obligation of not aiding each others Enemys, shall always continue firm between the Empire and the Kingdom of France, but yet so as that it shall be free for the States to succour; without the bounds of the Empire, such or such Kingdoms, but still according to the Constitutions of the Empire.

V.

That the Controversy touching Lorain shall be refer'd to Arbitrators nominated by both sides, or it shall be terminated by a Treaty between France and Spain, or by some other friendly means; and it shall be free as well for the Emperor, as Electors, Princes and States of the Empire, to aid and advance this Agreement by an amicable Interposition, and other Offices of Pacification, without using the force of Arms.

VI.

According to this foundation of reciprocal Amity, and a general Amnesty, all and every one of the Electors of the sacred Roman Empire, the Princes and States (therein comprehending the Nobility, which depend immediately on the Empire) their Vassals, Subjects, Citizens, Inhabitants (to whom on the account of the Bohemian or German Troubles or Alliances, contracted here and there, might have been done by the one Party or the other, any Prejudice or Damage in any manner, or under what pretence soever, as well in their Lordships, their fiefs, Underfiefs, Allodations, as in their Dignitys, Immunitys, Rights and Privileges) shall be fully re-establish'd on the one side and the other, in the Ecclesiastick or Laick State, which they enjoy'd, or could lawfully enjoy, notwithstanding any Alterations, which have been made in the mean time to the contrary.

VII.

If the Possessors of Estates, which are to be restor'd, think they have lawful Exceptions, yet it shall not hinder the Restitution; which done, their Reasons and Exceptions may be examin'd before competent Judges, who are to determine the same.

VIII.

And tho by the precedent general Rule it may be easily judg'd who those are, and how far the Restitution extends; nevertheless, it has been thought fit to make a particular mention of the following Cases of Importance, but yet so that those which are not in express Terms nam'd, are not to be taken as if they were excluded or forgot.

IX.

Since the Arrest the Emperor has formerly caus'd to be made in the Provincial Assembly, against the moveable Effects of the Prince Elector of Treves, which were transported into the Dutchy of Luxemburg, tho releas'd and abolish'd, yet at the instance of some has been renew'd; to which has been added a Sequestration, which the said Assembly has made of the Jurisdiction of Burch, belonging to the Archbishoprick, and of the Moiety of the Lordship of St. John, belonging to John Reinbard of Soeteren, which is contrary to the Concordat's drawn up at Ausburg in the year 1548 by the publick interposition of the Empire, between the Elector of Treves, and the Dutchy of Burgundy: It has been agreed, that the abovesaid Arrest and Sequestration shall be taken away with all speed from the Assembly of Luxemburg, that the said Jurisdiction, Lordship, and Electoral and Patrimonial Effects, with the sequestred Revenues, shall be releas'd and restor'd to the Elector; and if by accident some things should be Imbezel'd, they shall be fully restor'd to him; the Petitioners being refer'd, for the obtaining a determination of their Rights, to the Judge of the Prince Elector, who is competent in the Empire.

X.

As for what concerns the Castles of Ehrenbreitstein and Homestein, the Emperor shall withdraw, or cause the Garisons to be withdrawn in the time and manner limited hereafter in the Article of Execution, and shall restore those Castles to the Elector of Treves, and to his Metropolitan Chapter, to be in the Protection of the Empire, and the Electorate; for which end the Captain, and the new Garison which shall be put therein by the Elector, shall also take the Oaths of Fidelity to him and his Chapter.

XI.

The Congress of Munster and Osnabrug having brought the Palatinate Cause to that pass, that the Dispute which has lasted for so long time, has been at length terminated; the Terms are these.

XII.

In the first place, as to what concerns the House of Bavaria, the Electoral Dignity which the Electors Palatine have hitherto had, with all their Regales, Offices, Precedencys, Arms and Rights, whatever they be, belonging to this Dignity, without excepting any, as also all the Upper Palatinate and the County of Cham, shall remain, as for the time past, so also for the future, with all their Appurtenances, Regales and Rights, in the possession of the Lord Maximilian, Count Palatine of the Rhine, Duke of Bavaria, and of his children, and all the Willielmine Line, whilst there shall be any Male Children in being.

XIII.

Reciprocally the Elector of Bavaria renounces entirely for himself and his Heirs and Successors the Debt of Thirteen Millions, as also all his Pretensions in Upper Austria; and shall deliver to his Imperial Majesty immediately after the Publication of the Peace, all Acts and Arrests obtain'd for that end, in order to be made void and null.

XIV.

As for what regards the House of Palatine, the Emperor and the Empire, for the benefit of the publick Tranquillity, consent, that by virtue of this present Agreement, there be establish'd an eighth Electorate; which the Lord Charles Lewis, Count Palatine of the Rhine, shall enjoy for the future, and his Heirs, and the Descendants of the Rudolphine Line, pursuant to the Order of Succession, set forth in the Golden Bull; and that by this Investiture, neither the Lord Charles Lewis, nor his Successors shall have any Right to that which has been given with the Electoral Dignity to the Elector of Bavaria, and all the Branch of William.

XV.

Secondly, that all the Lower Palatinate, with all and every the Ecclesiastical and Secular Lands, Rights and Appurtenances, which the Electors and Princes Palatine enjoy'd before the Troubles of Bohemia, shall be fully restor'd to him; as also all the Documents, Registers and Papers belonging thereto; annulling all that hath been done to the contrary. And the Emperor engages, that neither the Catholick King, nor any other who possess any thing thereof, shall any ways oppose this Restitution.

XVI.

Forasmuch-as that certain Jurisdictions of the Bergstraet, belonging antiently to the Elector of Mayence, were in the year 1463 mortgag'd to the House Palatine for a certain Sum of Money: upon condition of perpetual Redemption, it has been agreed that the same Jurisdictions shall be Restor'd to the present Elector of Mayence, and his Successors in the Archbishoprick of Mayence, provided the Mortgage be paid in ready Mony, within the time limited by the Peace to be concluded; and that he satisfies the other Conditions, which he is bound to by the Tenor of the Mortgage-Deeds.

XVII.

It shall also be free for the Elector of Treves, as well in the Quality of Bishop of Spires as Bishop of Worms, to sue before competent Judges for the Rights he pretends to certain Ecclesiastical Lands, situated in the Territorys of the Lower Palatinate, if so be those Princes make not a friendly Agreement among themselves.

XVIII.

That if it should happen that the Male Branch of William should be intirely extinct, and the Palatine Branch still subsist, not only the Upper Palatinate, but also the Electoral Dignity of the Dukes of Bavaria, shall revert to the said surviving Palatine, who in the mean time enjoys the Investiture: but then the eighth Electorate shall be intirely suppress'd. Yet in such case, nevertheless, of the return of the Upper Palatinate to the surviving Palatines, the Heirs of any Allodian Lands of the Bavarian Electors shall remain in Possession of the Rights and Benefices, which may lawfully appertain to them.

XIX.

That the Family-Contracts made between the Electoral House of Heidelberg and that of Nieuburg, touching the Succession to the Electorate, confirm'd by former Emperors; as also all the Rights of the Rudolphine Branch, forasmuch as they are not contrary to this Disposition, shall be conserv'd and maintain'd entire.

XX.

Moreover, if any Fiefs in Juliers shall be found open by lawful Process, the Question shall be decided in favour of the House Palatine.

XXI.

Further, to ease the Lord Charles Lewis, in some measure, of the trouble of providing his Brothers with Appenages, his Imperial Majesty will give order that forty thousand Rixdollars shall be paid to the said Brothers, in the four ensuing Years; the first commencing with the Year 1649. The Payment to be made of ten thousand Rixdollars yearly, with five per Cent Interest.

XXII.

Further, that all the Palatinate House, with all and each of them, who are, or have in any manner adher'd to it; and above all, the Ministers who have serv'd in this Assembly, or have formerly serv'd this House; as also all those who are banish'd out of the Palatinate, shall enjoy the general Amnesty here above promis'd, with the same Rights as those who are comprehended therein, or of whom a more particular and ampler mention has been made in the Article of Grievance.

XXIII.

Reciprocally the Lord Charles Lewis and his Brothers shall render Obedience, and be faithful to his Imperial Majesty, like the other Electors and Princes of the Empire; and shall renounce their Pretensions to the Upper Palatinate, as well for themselves as their Heirs, whilst any Male, and lawful Heir of the Branch of William shall continue alive.

XXIV.

And upon the mention which has been made, to give a Dowry and a Pension to the Mother Dowager of the said Prince, and to his Sisters; his Sacred Imperial Majesty (according to the Affection he has for the Palatinate House) has promis'd to the said Dowager, for her Maintenance and Subsistence, to pay once for all twenty thousand Rixdollars; and to each of the Sisters of the said Lord Charles Lewis, when they shall marry, ten thousand Rixdollars, the said Prince Charles Lewis being bo