Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Ban Hammer Time

Due in part to the recent massive derailing of, and general unpleasantness within, a certain discussion thread here, I will be enforcing my comments policy more stringently, especially when it comes to personal attacks, and off-topic posts that I find tiresome and/or disruptive.

Also, I'm introducing short-term bans for people who are breaking the rules but don't deserve forever bans. Blogger doesn't let me literally ban people; I just delete their comments. If I've "banned" someone and they keep posting, just ignore them. I will delete their comments when I see them.  

I've updated  my comments policy page to reflect this. If you're new here, read it.


  1. Hey David,

    One suggestion, dunno if this would be helpful at all. You might try closing threads that have gone too over the rails. Once the comments start heading towards 300, it might not be out of line to simply stop the discussion in favor of a new one. Might be better than handing out bans to people who continue to flame because they feel they need to get one last point in.

    Anyways, kudos for doing as well as you have been on such a hot discussion topic.

  2. Sucks that it ever even has to reach this point. Sorry to read this...but glad you're all over it. *nod*

  3. Nice. Maybe us not-so-crazy people can get a word or two in now.

  4. But watching the train go off the rails is half the fun!

  5. @Sam

    Yeah, I know, right? You just can't look away from the train wrecks. It's like "whee, I'm in Hollywood!"

    But then you see the corpses and/or heaps of spilled freight, and it ain't so funny no more.

  6. Indeed Sam.

    There's also something to be said for letting someone's foul words stand and be seen. Deleting just means that they still get to say what they wanted and plenty of people will see it, but they can't be easily held accountable for it after the fact.

  7. A certain thread? You mean there is one without a derail? ;)

  8. woah woah woah... Is this about ginmar?

    He/she one of the few people around here with guts and a fully functioning brain. I can't believe the shit some were dishing at him/her in that thread when so much violence and evilness gets ignored around here for the sake of comedy or page views or whatever.

    Long live ginmar!

  9. Why am I thinking about Scott Adams right now?

    It takes no "guts" to write things on the internet and from what I've seen most posters here have a fully functioning brain. For once and for all this is a comedy site that also does the service of showing how cracked mra's are: not a feminist safe space that need to be defended from the idiots that this site makes fun of by the feminist hammers of the internet.

  10. Oh, and I don't see anybody asking for a safe space. Just equal treatment when the hate that so many, many men deserve gets blown in that direction instead of the default direction.

  11. TFYFWYA, I'm a little confused as to what you think this blog is about. The whole point is to highlight ridiculous misogynist shit. When people say ridiculous misogynist shit in the comments, it's kind of icing on the ridiculous misogynist cake.

    I generally haven't been deleting stuff unless it's really abusive or disruptive. But I'm tired of it and will delete more often in the future. And this, as always, will be regardless of the person's ideology. Which means, yes, if ginmar keeps up with her nasty personal attacks on other commenters I will delete those comments and/or give her a temporary ban, as I did to one other commenter earlier today (for a now-deleted comment attacking ginmar, actually).

  12. No need to be confused. Having read since shortly after the site launched, I know exactly what the blog is about.

  13. StepVheN said...

    Wot a gay bitch

    Hmmm...looks like 4chan has come here.

    Seriously, is that the extent of your wisdom, or do you have anything more to add?

  14. No StepVheN, David is not a gay bitch. I'm a gay bitch. And I probably get more p*ssy than you do. Just sayin'

  15. "It takes no "guts" to write things on the internet"


    It usually takes guts to write about marginalized experience, or really anything revealingly personal, whether directly or indirectly.

    There's no "guts" here? http://www.fugitivus.net/about-this-blog/

    Or here? http://ballastexistenz.autistics.org/

    Or here? http://www.amptoons.com/blog/2008/10/07/fat-monologue/

    Being metaphorically naked in front of readers is always gutsy. The medium isn't the central point.

    I have always admired Ginmar's bravery.

  16. Consider moving the blog to the Wordpress platform - it's much easier to scan the comments, and there are features for blocking and partly blocking offenders.

  17. Also on Wordpress you, as an administrator, could correct commenst and add notes in the body of the comment, if needed.

  18. Denia, I have thought about moving over to wordpress, and have claimed the appropriate wordpress url. There are actually a bunch of things I actually LIKE about blogger, but wordpress clearly has much better options for dealing with comments.

  19. Well just for your delectation heres the actual criteria for PTSD - not the pretend ones commented on in the thread Ginmar went of in but the actual ones. You will notice that wifebeating is not a diagnostic criteria and anger and irritability come second to fear (as Ginmar correctly pointed out)

    Ginmar - I hear you. The major irony of that whole series of posts is the way the PTSD criteria for irritability and anger was so conveniently overlooked when ginmar who has admitted she is a diagnosed PTSD displayed symptoms of it but was brought out in defense of a wifebeater who was not diagnosed (and as a DV advocate I can assure that if he had had a psychotic break he would currently be 'awaiting pschiatric assessment' not in jail. Guess waht angry people can be not too much fun to deal with but bloody hell. Ginmar was cranky but she never threatened or actually beat the crap out of any of you (which the guy we were all talking about did. She just displayed some classic irritabilit symptoms and given what she was saying even if she didn't have PTSD I can still understand her anger. Seriously a pox on the lot of you. You DO give MRAs more leeway -its not like this was a regular feature of Ginmar's posts it was a one off passionate rant that made some people uncomfortable. Shame on you really.

  20. Post 2 - DSM Criteria for PTSD

    309.81 DSM-IV Criteria for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

    A. The person has been exposed to a traumatic event in which both of the following have been present:

    (1) the person experienced, witnessed, or was confronted with an event or events that involved actual or threatened death or serious injury, or a threat to the physical integrity of self or others (2) the person's response involved intense fear, helplessness, or horror. Note: In children, this may be expressed instead by disorganized or agitated behavior.

    B. The traumatic event is persistently reexperienced in one (or more) of the following ways:

    (1) recurrent and intrusive distressing recollections of the event, including images, thoughts, or perceptions. Note: In young children, repetitive play may occur in which themes or aspects of the trauma are expressed.

    (2) recurrent distressing dreams of the event. Note: In children, there may be frightening dreams without recognizable content.

    (3) acting or feeling as if the traumatic event were recurring (includes a sense of reliving the experience, illusions, hallucinations, and dissociative flashback episodes, including those that occur upon awakening or when intoxicated). Note: In young children, trauma-specific reenactment may occur.

    (4) intense psychological distress at exposure to internal or external cues that symbolize or resemble an aspect of the traumatic event.

    (5) physiological reactivity on exposure to internal or external cues that symbolize or resemble an aspect of the traumatic event.

    C. Persistent avoidance of stimuli associated with the trauma and numbing of general responsiveness (not present before the trauma), as indicated by three (or more) of the following:

    (1) efforts to avoid thoughts, feelings, or conversations associated with the trauma

    (2) efforts to avoid activities, places, or people that arouse recollections of the trauma

    (3) inability to recall an important aspect of the trauma

    (4) markedly diminished interest or participation in significant activities

    (5) feeling of detachment or estrangement from others

    (6) restricted range of affect (e.g., unable to have loving feelings)

    (7) sense of a foreshortened future (e.g., does not expect to have a career, marriage, children, or a normal life span)

    D. Persistent symptoms of increased arousal (not present before the trauma), as indicated by two (or more) of the following:

    (1) difficulty falling or staying asleep
    (2) irritability or outbursts of anger
    (3) difficulty concentrating
    (4) hypervigilance
    (5) exaggerated startle response

    E. Duration of the disturbance (symptoms in Criteria B, C, and D) is more than one month.

    F. The disturbance causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.

    Specify if:
    Acute: if duration of symptoms is less than 3 months
    Chronic: if duration of symptoms is 3 months or more

    Specify if:
    With Delayed Onset: if onset of symptoms is at least 6 months after the stressor

  21. Oh and one further thing. The person in the case originally the subject of disussion MOST likely to have PTSD was the woman beaten to a pulp in family court. She had a double whammy being both a marine AND an abused woman. You know the PTSD rate in domestic violence victims is as high or higher as in soldiers but that doesn't sell newspapers.Sorry for typos above but I am as cranky as Ginmar although attempting to be slightly more polite. How did it happen that all the comments about the male abuser marine maybe having PTSD and NOBODY thought that maybe the woman had it as well both as a marine and as a beaten wife. Nope it all around her character as to whether she was justified in leaving her husband and whether she was a good mother. It really does show how indoctrinated even people you would think are trying to assess the situation reasonably are - when the criteria the beaten woman was judged on was different from that of her abuser. WHEN WAS the last time you saw a headline 'Beaten abused woman with PTSD leaves husband thank goodness'. Sometimes I really despair

  22. And if you have talked to combat PTSD sufferers you would notice that they genuinely accept that they can be abusive and often hide themselves from the world to prevent others from suffering.

    Their entire problem is that lashing out is too easy. They don't accept PTSD as an excuse for violence. There is a difference, a PTSD sufferer with a flashback wants to hide. A combat related PTSD sufferer usually will try and fight back. There have been cases from WW2 of women being injured by husbands who were veterans from Okinawa and Iwo Jima because they woke them up.

    You can dance and say "well they are abusive" or you can accept that "Japanese men used to crawl into trenches and cut throats of sleeping americans so people developed that habit". One is a catchall term and dismissive and assumes that no matter what Men Will Be Abusive For Unknown Reasons (or indeed very complex ones related to "the patriarchy") or we can notice a trend in people suffering from abuse that has a real controllable cause.

    Untreated however... Combat PTSD usually initially manifests itself in violence and abuse. And Ginmar isn't the only person who had PTSD from combat reasons and indeed she actually dismissed other veterans suffering as "excusing abuse with PTSD" rather than "trying to curtail the excesses of PTSD". Yes... Very little has been done specifically to female combat PTSD sufferers but "you really have to show up to the VA or local equivalent for you to get help. Men are more likely to seek it and compliance is higher than women to therapy."

  23. "She just displayed some classic irritabilit symptoms"

    This. She's a feminist with a disability.

    "its not like this was a regular feature of Ginmar's posts it was a one off passionate rant that made some people uncomfortable"

    People may have experiences with her doing/saying similar things in other spaces.



    I know you've had problems with me. I don't want to presume by assuming you remember our argument on pandagon from a couple of years ago, but in case you do, I continue to apologize for writing something unclearly enough for you to take the meaning you did from it. It was sincerely not my intended meaning.

    I've read your comments for a few years now and I read your livejournal for a while (and I thought you had some intense and important things to say). I respect you, your blogging, and your commenting.

    I apologize if this is not the right question to ask, but from my limited perspective, it seems like the most important thing to know--how would you like other blog readers and commenters to respond to you when you get really angry?

    Sometimes you don't seem receptive when people try to disengage or to explain their positions. Sometimes people genuinely do seem to be trying to say one thing where you're responding very angrily to another. It does sometimes seem to get personal. It's hard for me, at least, to know how to respond to that.

    I'm not trying to discount your arguments; as I said, I think you have intense and important things to say, and I admire how fearlessly you continue to say them even when there's heat in response. Personally, I have a kind of cat-scratch-then-cower response to conflict (No! Get away from me! Now I will hide behind the couch which is clearly very productive! :-P), and I admire people who can take heat in stride.

    Just sometimes, when the anger seems to get high, I think there's a strangeness that happens in the communication.

    I have my own mental illness, and I know that it totally creates its own strangenesses in communication. I have really appreciated it when people take the time and effort to respect that while some of my emotional responses may differ from the template of what's considered normal, that doesn't mean there's no way to incorporate them into mutually respectful relationships. It can just take a bit of willingness to adapt strategies for dealing with anger or sadness or whatever.

    Ableism models only certain kinds of interactions, and encourages people to disregard anything that's outside the range deemed normal. And this sucks--primarily because of the stigma it attaches to people who aren't in the deemed-normal range. But secondarily because people genuinely don't have strategies for adapting to what's outside their range of experience--especially because not-deemed-normal people may try to hide the ways they differ from the default template so that most people never understand how common, e.g., depression reactions are, leaving everyone feeling isolated and wrong.

    From that perspective, I'm wondering what you would like people to do when this happens, so we can be supportive and productive? How would you like people to approach you when you're angry?

  24. Ginmar verbally attacks anyone that disagrees with her lashing out with personal attacks and foul language. Maybe it's her PTSD that brings on those antisocial qualities. (2) irritability or outbursts of anger

    Knowing that she has PTSD makes me have some empathy for her, but it is still right to call her on her bad behavior.

    I didn't see anyone making excuses for the guy who beat his wife, just an understanding that he may have a disorder. I don't believe anyone said he should get off on the charges (except for the mra's who are expected to say that sort of a thing) people were just speculating on why he would do such a thing. Kind of like when a mother drowns her new born I would speculate that she was suffering from post-partum psychosis.

    It was not a one off passionate rant. When I posted that although I was wealthy I was not immune to personal pain, having lost a child to cancer etc, she called me a privileged bastard. (I in turn shut down the conversation in a conversation ender way without personally insulting her).

    I've seen this many times since she's been posting here. Everyone is having a good time mocking the misogynists then Ginmar shows up like the big dog. The site is simply not funny when she's around, in fact it's down right mean. (and that includes her internet friends she brings with her)

    It takes no guts to call someone a asshole idiot fucking asshole bastard on the internet, and anyone who thinks it does needs to spend more time off the internet.

  25. Avicenna

    Well actually not only have I talked to combat PTSD sufferers but my current partner is one. Of quite a few years now. Thats where ginmar was complaining about the condescending bit in your posts I think. Its one thing to talk about them in the abstract and quite another to live with one over time and deal with what they do and how they feel. (Don't know your background but your posts don;t give me any indication that you have long term been intimately involved) And for the record he has never beaten me, physically threatened me although he did get into trouble with the law once in a pub fight where he thought his life was under threat and he reacted as if he was in a combat situation due to his conditioning in the army and his PTSD. He caused a great deal of harm to many people in a short term but the CCTV fortunately was on and when it went to court it showed he was reacting not initiating like the prick in the courtroom scenario - read the criteria again - Violence is not a symptom. If its pre-existing it will be exacerbated thats all. My partner now holds down a job most years although not usually more than a year at time he cracks under pressure an reverts to what will keep him safe which is not always what society thinks is appropriate. But still earns good money, works hard and has managed to maintain a good relationshiop for some time. Things get better each year but he will never stop waking up in the middle of the night, sleepwalking and I expect I will still wake up finding myself being treated for some shocking injury or being warned that the bad guys are approaching and I need to be careful while he is dead asleep and cannot remember the details the next day. Except for the dream where he wipes blood off my face (which is about someone else completely he cared about once)

    Kave - Are you saying Ginmar has upset your party mocking MRAs - seems shes probly been the victim of some (like your brother maybe?)Scuse me but if you just want to mock MRA people and have real people banished the ok I misunderstood all those posts where you were upset your brother had been sucked in by the MRA movement. I thought you were actually cranky with them. My bad

  26. Did we seriously just derail the thread about derailing?

  27. haloinshreds...

    I speak from personal experience as well, both as a sufferer and as someone who has worked with other sufferers.

    Not all sufferers have this issue. I did say that it was "more common", not universal.

  28. HA!

    I leave your blog for a few days and look what happens Dave!

    Pay me money to stick around...

    Or give me a free t-shirt.

  29. @Sandy Did we seriously just derail the thread about derailing?

    And it was Magnificent.

  30. Haloinshreds truly has no sense of irony. But yes, this is an illustration of why David is doing the right thing by moderating more strongly; we apparently can no longer hold a discussion about anything without someone injecting a four-post roadblock about something irrelevant.

  31. I do not think ginmar's comments on the other thread were a derail(I will join in the ironic derailing now ;) ) . The issue of PTSD had been brought up by someone else in regards to the incident, ginmar responded and disagreed. The statements made about PTSD and crime and mental illness and crime in general were problematic and did deserve response. I for one agree with ginmar on the PTSD issue and I did not think she was the one at issue here until someone else suggested it (I really thought it was THASF's long and mangled attempts at philosophy). Does ginmar say contentious (or even rude) things sometimes? Yes, but she is generally on topic and the personal attacks she makes are on the milder side for these comment threads.

  32. I agree with DSC. THASF was derailing much more than ginmar.

  33. To clarify: I was bothered both by THASF's endless derailing comments on his pet philosophical issues, etc and by ginmar's nasty personal attacks on and misrepresentations of several commenters here.

    This post is a fair warning of sorts that I will shut that sort of thing down more quickly and aggressively in the future. Neither commenter has been banned. They're both welcome to post, so long as they don't repeat their more obnoxious behavior in the thread in question.

  34. I will also modestly suggest Wordpress. You really do need to address the commenting problems (it's taken several tries for me to post this).

    I don't think locking long threads, as someone suggested, is a good solution--not so much because of the possibility of long threads not being obnoxiously derailed as because locking a thread tends to cause the argument to spill out into surrounding threads that might be having good conversations.

  35. Yeah, I think THASF and ginmar were both out of line. As soon as THASF starting talking about voluntary self-sterilization for people with genetic diseases I decided there was no way I would ever engage him on this forum. I have a genetic disease. It's making me utterly miserable at the moment and you know what? I still plan on someday having kids because there is more to my gene pool than hereditary spherocytosis and damn it, I am more than my diagnosis. And ginmar clearly has some anger problems.

  36. The issues that inspired the post were transparent to people who follow the blog; how is it a derail to discuss them?

  37. I hate to derail an already derailed thread but hey, all the cool kids are doing it, so...

    My father is a Vietnam combat veteran with severe PTSD and traumatic brain injury. He was horribly abusive to my mother - they were together for fifteen years before she finally divorced him and ran for her life, leaving me and my brother behind. She eventually got us back when we were teens. My dad fought for custody because he knew it would hurt her not because he was a more fit parent (he wasn't), and to this day still in his mind has her figured for a "bad mother" despite my objections that she was actually an excellent mother and that most of their supposed mutual problems stemmed from HIM being fucked up for forty years.

    I also have a great uncle who is a combat veteran from WW2 - he never married or had relationships with women that I know of; he was missing a limb and I suppose presumed that having a missing limb and PTSD made him an unfit candidate for marriage. He has been single and childless his whole life; he's one of my favorite people ever.

    So, I have lived with combat PTSD veterans most of my life.

    I can say, definitively, that the organized, directed, deliberate abuse of domestic violence is absolutely and unequivocably NOT linked to PTSD.

    Many people with PTSD manage to figure out how not to deliberately hurt, maim, or kill their partners. Many people who perpetuate domestic violence do not have any history of trauma let alone PTSD.

    If you want to understand the dynamics of an abuser's mind, the best resource I've seen is Lundy Bancroft's book "Why Does He Do That." I have seen plenty of DV - and none of it was because of a startle reaction, the result of feeling in danger, the result of flashbacks, or having been generally irritable or angry.

    Domestic abusers abuse beause of an overwhelming need to be in control, and an overwhelming bordering-on-sociopathic sense of narcissism and entitlement. Gonzalez is a shining example - notice how he wasn't in any danger, no one startled him, and his attack was sistained, directed, and premeditated. A well-deserved shot in his wallet to pay for his own damned kids isn't a PTSD trigger and anyone who says so has a screw loose.

    Anyway, my two cents as a person who has observed PTSD my entire life. BTW my dad went on to remarry when I was fifteen - he chose a woman who would absolutely not tolerate his shit, and he has never laid a hand on her despite still having PTSD.

    (Three different accounts, two different computers, and about 80 tries to post this)

  38. It was not a one off passionate rant. When I posted that although I was wealthy I was not immune to personal pain, having lost a child to cancer etc, she called me a privileged bastard.

    You are. Don't try to lay that on ginmar. When confronted about your unexamined class privilege you proceeded to accuse people of class envy. In that sense, you're not much better than MRAs, except with regard to class rather than gender.

  39. Even though he banned me for a day (I was pretty much asking for it), I have to respect Dave for showing good judgment and fairness. He warned the people who should have been warned instead of siding with the 'regulars' against the 'outsiders', and he called ginmar out on her behavior, where a typical white-knight would have made excuses and tried to appease her. Those things already lift this place several notches higher than the typical feminist blog, in my book. So... thumbs up, I guess. Bringeth down the hammer of justice on the wicked, that it shall beateth sense into their heads. :)

  40. It's a derail to talk about the topic that caused the derail because the derail was unwanted and this entire post is about trying to prevent it. In other words, it's a derail because that's not the topic and if we wanted a topic about PTSD, David would post about it. Besides, it's common courtesy to continue the conversation in the thread where it started, so that other people in other places can discuss other things.

  41. @anthonybsusan

    Well, I didn't only bring up voluntary sterilization, but in-utero gene therapy and prosthetic augmentation or supplementation of existing organs and systems in the body. In-utero gene therapy is a hypothetical means of fixing genetic disorders while the subject in question is still in their mother's womb.

    You, for example, would not have been born with a disorder at all had this method been used. Although I'm not too sure of the details, I don't even think that a subject that has had damaged or defective genes replaced in the womb can pass on their parents' illness to their own offspring.

    You know what? This just gave me an idea for a horror novel. Scientists start using in-utero gene therapy on humans, but they start showing bizarre defects after a few generations... ugh. It's probably already been done. Besides, I hate books that have a "science is bad" Aesop attached to them, especially because of the sheer hypocrisy that entails; like Avatar having a "back to nature" message despite being the poster child for 3D movies and requiring tons of newfangled gear to watch, or like any of the millions of environmentalist/neo-luddite books that relied on the printing press or electronic media to be conveyed to their audience.

  42. *shrug* I don't agree with your points, cboye, and am not particularly appreciative of the suggestion that people who don't agree with you lack common courtesy rather than, say, having a different perspective. Anyway, if Dave wants the conversation to stop, he can stop it.

    In the meanwhile, I really am genuinely interested in how Ginmar would ideally like people to respond.

  43. THASF:

    It has really, really been done.

  44. Rachel: You know perfectly well that I didn't mention anything about whether people agreed with me or not. In fact I've expressed no opinion about PTSD except that it's off-topic.

    I said that it's common courtesy to continue the conversation in the thread where it began.

    What you and others are trying to do is drag the drag the derailed issue into other threads, like this one, thus smothering attempts to have conversations about something else.

  45. trip said

    "you are. Don't try to lay that on ginmar. When confronted about your unexamined class privilege you proceeded to accuse people of class envy. In that sense, you're not much better than MRAs, except with regard to class rather than gender."

    Excuse me? When someone writes a post about how their class did not stop them from receiving one of life's greatest pains, losing a child: the appropriate response is not to call them a privileged bastard etc. Pointing out class envy is a very small response (and half hearted) to a rather hateful comment void of human empathy.

    How do you KNOW I have unexamined class privilege? Calling someone a bastard etc is not asking about anything, or do you just assume?

  46. I'm not sure dredging all this up again is going to be helpful for anyone.

  47. You guys have to keep in mind that I'm a bit socially-awkward. One of the biggest problems I have with my books is writing convincing dialogue, and to tackle the problem, I decided to carry out a bit of a meta-analysis on how people react conversationally to certain kinds of probing; how they tolerate moral or intellectual dissonance, apologetic behavior, that sort of thing. You guys have been excellent study material.

  48. Kave, your points in that discussion were basically: rich people have it harder than people give them credit for; everybody is always hating on rich people and it's not fair; people who criticize rich people are envious.

    Replace "rich people" with "men" and you have a garden variety misogynist. Deal with it.

  49. @ THASF:

    That's why a lot of the people here don't much care for you. You're not an all-knowing scientist in a lab, and we're not 'study material' for you. We're actual people - and 'studying' how people talk on the Internet reveals nothing about how they talk in real life.

    If you really want to study how people speak and have conversations, go rent some movies. If you can't afford movies, then go to Hulu (since you obviously have a computer and Internet connection). Watch those people, and stop bothering us.

  50. Trip.

    My initial post was projected towards an mra claiming how their life's hardships were worse then others, my post said everyone deals with their shit (could have been someone else claiming pure victimhood). I used the example of myself losing a child and my friggin brother.

    In my initial post I stated that we were allowed the best health care but that didn't stop the inevitable.

    Trip, she called me a rich arrogant bastard after my initial post, that is really sad.

    When I was a kid I thought of everyone who owned a business as being wealthy, from the corner store owner etc. No idea where this misconception came from but it was there. So I can somewhat understand your problems with people with money? (or maybe my parents instilled in me that the couple that owned the drugstore on the corner were our equals)

    Of course this comes from the same person who hates engineers. I have a personal issue with this as my mother got her degree in engineering in the early 1980, in her 60's, because it was always something she wanted and was denied to her when she went through school.

    Deal with your hate of my mother. Does that sound reasonable?

  51. I think THASF is trying to pull a Scott Adams. Keep me alerted of any ensuing sock puppetry.

    @Kave, your statements were massively classist, so assuming you were not examining your privilege was the more generous position (the alternative is assuming you willfully throw around your privilege). If the pain that you are complaining of is one that happens to humans across the board, it is not a sign that a privileged person who suffered it is the oppressed class. If it is a pain like this one that is in fact more commonly suffered by the oppressed group that the privileged person is whining to (poor people loose children at higher rates due to discrepancies in access to medical care, nutrition, safe housing, etc.), you are being a privileged ass when you bring it up to try and elicit pity. Even more so when the rest of your woes are nothing more than pathetic whinging. This could be your theme song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34u_3Z9_LUw

  52. When I was a kid I thought of everyone who owned a business as being wealthy, from the corner store owner etc. No idea where this misconception came from but it was there. So I can somewhat understand your problems with people with money? (or maybe my parents instilled in me that the couple that owned the drugstore on the corner were our equals)

    Ah, so if it's not class envy that's motivating me, it's childish naivete? Splendid.

    If I were to "explain" to a black person why they shouldn't place so much blame on white people, or to a woman why they shouldn't place so much blame on men, I'd be a privilege-denying asshole. Just saying.

  53. THASF, as someone who dealt with her own social awkwardness around your same age, let me give you the most valuable piece of advice I can. It worked for me, and it will work for you.

    Shut the fuck up.

    I mean that in the nicest way possible. Shut the fuck up, and just watch people. Don't try to interject, don't try to manipulate them, don't use them as your own private experiments. Shut up, and watch how they interact with each other. Seek out social occasions and join groups with open membership (like hobby clubs or volunteer organizations). And shut the fuck up.

    Shut the fuck up for about a year. After a year of watching how people interact without trying to force inclusion or force your ideas on people who don't care for them, you'll be a much savvier person and won't piss people off all the time with your relentless self-absorbed cluelessness. Trust me, I spent my own year shutting the fuck up and learned reams from it.

  54. Oh, and I'm also really enjoying your constant assumptions about whether or not *I* have money. I don't have a great deal, but I have as much as I want. I certainly don't consider myself lower-class, mainly because to do so would entail a great deal of privilege-denial on my part. I'm firmly middle class, and I'm of the opinion that middle-class people are frequent privilege-deniers as well, so please cut it out with the classist assumptions that only poor people have a problem with rich people.

  55. Darksidecat

    Privilege is quite subjective. You for instance unless you have told me other have enjoyed the privilege of not having to have your child die, or having to follow your brother around the internet. I have to say I made comments about Jews , I did so as a conversation stopper. Probably not the best thing to do but it's the internet and frankly I wouldn't have done so if I wasn't somewhat biologically jewish. Thats a privilege.

    I did NOT bring these things up to bring on pity, I am well aware that everyone has their crosses to bear, that was my point, that even the most privileged has shit. Ginmar's answer to my post directed at mra's whining however crossed the line at a total lack of any sort of empathy with a huge dose of hatred.

    Someone in this thread brought up that I of all people should hate mra's.
    I resent what they have contributed to my brothers illness. I have gotten angry when someone who seems to be sane on the internet feeds his fantasies. But I also understand they could suffer from the same delusions he does.

    My vice is that this blog has allowed me to mock the people who feed my brother his delusions. It's a decent vice I think.

  56. trip

    I think you said your a man.

    Have shame for your whole life being born a man and having so much privilege.... or get over it, do so good in life and enjoy your life. It's up to you, you privileged fucking bastard.

  57. @ THASF

    "Books about mega-structures suspended in space? Check. Books about incomprehensible alien societies? Check. Books where a dogmatic race of extra-terrestrials wants to wipe out mankind? Check. Books about rogue nanotech or robots gone wrong? Check and check."

    These things haven't just all been done; they've all been done in Star Trek. Aim higher, dude.

    "See, I wanted to do a period piece that starts off back in the 1920s, but I don't really have the faintest idea how people talked back then."

    Hint: they talked pretty much the same way they do now. Slang was different; pop culture references were different; otherwise, though, you're okay. Seriously. Reading old newspapers is still a good idea, though (disclaimer: I am a historian and am therefore extremely biased in favour of old newspapers in general).

  58. Yeah, and you know what, I could fill *your* ear with all the fucked up shit my highly religious, traditional dad imparted to *me* when I was growing up.

    You can either choose to become a mature adult or persist in childish game playing; I was hoping to give you some good advice and save you a few more years of wondering why no one ever invites you anywhere.

  59. I think you said your a man.

    Have shame for your whole life being born a man and having so much privilege.... or get over it, do so good in life and enjoy your life. It's up to you, you privileged fucking bastard.

    Incredible. You just really can't comprehend the possibility that somebody who doesn't like whiny privilege-denying rich dudes might have actually thought that position through.

    You think pointing out my male privilege is supposed to mean something to me? I'm well aware of my male privilege. I don't deny it. Whereas you've spent a ton of time denying your class privilege. Any "shame" you think I'm trying to lay on you is insignificant compared to the social advantages your privileges bring.

    You know, there's no equivalent word for the rich guy version of mansplaining. Somebody should think one up, because it would fit you to a tee.

  60. Oh, and seeing as you're feminist, I assume you know why the notion of "penis envy" is sexist. Realize that the notion of "class envy" is pretty much the same thing and maybe you'll stop being a classist prick. I mean, I doubt it, but maybe.

  61. *THASF* said... I decided to carry out a bit of a meta-analysis on how people react conversationally to certain kinds of probing; how they tolerate moral or intellectual dissonance, apologetic behavior, that sort of thing. You guys have been excellent study material.

    I rather doubt this is what you're really doing, but if it is: stop.

    Lady Victoria's advice is excellent.

    If you do want to comment here, just chill out. Read what other people are writing. Respond to that. Don't bring up ten other subjects, or tell us about the books you want to write.

  62. No StepVheN, David is not a gay bitch. I'm a gay bitch. And I probably get more p*ssy than you do. Just sayin'

    This was cruel. I loved it.

  63. @cboye I apologize for lack of clarity. You said that X was the right thing to do and that it was common courtesy to do X. I disagree with you that X is the right thing to do, and I dislike the implication that I lack common courtesy because I don't agree with you about X. I assumed "about X" was implied by context when I said "people who disagree with you," but I guess it wasn't.

    @THASF It is, indeed, difficult to be a writer. It is, indeed, difficult to write with originality, and also to write historical fiction. But please don't confuse "difficult for me at this point" with "impossible for anyone."

  64. If someone points out that being rich does not mean they do not also have bad things happen to them, how is that showing "class privilege?" Kave's comments were "I am a rich guy but that has not prevented me from having losses like the loss of a child."

    Although seriously Kave, that comment about how you would rather switch places with a middle class person rather then deal with the fall out from a contested will was pretty stupid when talking about your privilege. I can feel bad you lost a child but I cannot feel bad you had to deal with a contested will. My response to that was "boo fucking hoo, rich guy had to deal with a lawyer."

  65. @Kave, no, privilege is not subjective, it is systematic. Male privilege is not a matter of pure luck (though which people are born with the prerequisites is). It is a matter of a system which actively benefits the privileged-men here-and actively harms the oppressed-women here. Having a bad thing happen to you is not oppression, having a bad thing happen to you because of a social and cultural system designed to give you the bad and members of another group(s) the good. You have a fundamental misunderstanding of privilege. And, yes, it is throwing around your privilege to interject into a discussion of oppression that the oppressor class has imperfect human lives to try to downplay the oppression of the actual oppressed group. The oppressed are perfectly fucking aware of the narratives about lives of the privileged, because they are centered and they proliferate all mainstream cultural media.

  66. Edit: add "is oppression" after the word "good".

  67. If someone gets banned in this thread, will it have re-railed itself?

  68. David: Wield or wield not; there is no try.

    Rachel basically said outright that people ignore you when you warn them not to do things, because they assume that if you really don't like what they're doing, you'll ban or delete the post. For instance, THASF has violated the specific rules you gave him several times in this thread by introducing new, unrelated topics and sharing yet more stories about his personal life.

  69. @THASF: It is not your place to speculate on the potential benefits of in-utero gene therapy because you are not a person with disabilities and therefore have no concept of the implications. Your support for it is based on a belief that there is something "wrong" with me, and people like me, and that is simply. I don't need to be fixed. Neither does my hypothetical fetus.

    Also, I googled ginmar and she's got quite a reputation as a troll. Particularly as a racist one.

  70. THASF, I've deleted a bunch of your comments here. Just keep to the subject and stop talking about yourself all the time. Once in awhile is fine, but not constantly. For now, for you, consider it forbidden.

  71. "Rachel basically said outright that people ignore you when you warn them not to do things, because they assume that if you really don't like what they're doing, you'll ban or delete the post."

    You... really must dislike me for some reason because you're straining for these readings.

    I said "if Dave wants the conversation to stop, he can stop it." Why on earth would that exclude warnings?

  72. Kave

    You are a bad privileged man and stupid too. Or at least that's the impression Im getting from all the oppressed intelligent people on here. ;P

  73. @Dave

    Oh, so other people - like ginmar, for example - get to talk about themselves and go off-topic all the time without getting their posts deleted, just not me? Isn't that a little hypocritical of you?


    This comment thread is obviously about nothing. The whole thing is filled from top to bottom with unrelated topics. Look at what the other posters here have covered: Thread Derailing, PTSD and Privilege. I don't see anything about the latter two in the post at the top. I try and add Writing Fiction into the mix, and suddenly it's some great big sin against nature? What on earth is that all about?

  74. THASF, I've basically got you on probation here; just show you can follow these rules for a few days and then I'll ease up on you.

  75. Elizabeth

    The comment I made about the contested will was meant to be humorous, kind of I understand that my pains are not in anyway the pains of someone who is born in a 3rd world thing and to compare them would be downright stupid. My only excuse is I'm not very versed in online talk.

    You've shown yourself in your posts here to be I believe a kind person, I apologize if that comment came off as being smug.

  76. Darksidecat

    You have some very interesting posts, some I agree with and some I don't. My wife came from a more privileged background then I did, so I do not agree with privilege being a black and white thing.

    Tit for Tat

    Not really.

    I'm aware that I am not great at the written word both because I was raised and only cared about industry, and every email I send business wise goes though people that deal with that, and I was never that interested in english studies. I understand that I can come off course at times and that ok with me. My dad still when asked what he does for a living calls himself a farmer.

    So I'm really ok having people on this blog articulate their thoughts better then I do. Understand that?

  77. THASF

    This is not a FORUM this is a blog.

    Forums are where someone (any member of the forum) posts a subject line and others comment on it.

    Blogs are where someone posts and others comment on their posts.

    You need a forum or your own blog, not someone else's blog.

  78. THASF:


  79. THASF, let me put it to you this way: this is my blog, and it's up to me to decide what is and is not off-topic. And what is and is not disruptive. Your posts are both.

    I made that clear, and I also made it clear that if you could rein it in a bit I'd let you continue posting, but instead you kept on doing what I've told you not to do.

    So we're done. At this point I'm just going to delete any comments you make.

    Find somewhere else to post where other people are actually interested in discussing what you want to discuss. Or start your own blog.

  80. All right, THASF, I read your last comment (I deleted it, but I read it.) There's no double standard here: NO ONE ELSE on this blog is behaving as disruptively as you. I asked you to follow a few simple rules and you completely ignored them.

    But I do think your heart is in the right place, so here's the deal: I'm moving this blog to wordpress. Come back, in a week, and I'll put you on moderation (where I have to approve all of your comments before they appear).

    Show me then that you can post comments that 1) aren't about you 2) aren't about things only tangentially related to this blog, 3) that aren't ten paragraphs long. No eugenics, no novel writing. Talk about what's in my posts and what the other people here are talking about. In other words, posts that are like those of most commenters here.

    Any comments of yours that follow those rules, I'll let them through. If you're consistently posting relevant, on-topic, not a million words long comments, I'll take you off moderation.

    Take a week, cool off, ask yourself why so many people here who might be sympathetic to many of your arguments got so frustrated with you.

    If you have anything else you want to say to me, ask me, whatever, before then, send me an email. (see my profile page for my email address)

  81. Kave-it is cool. These here interwebz do not allow for proper communication so we can determine when someone is being wry, ironic or whatever if it depends on hearing sound or view faces.

    Look, there have even been studies on it!

    Which is one of many many many reasons the only jokes we laugh at from ScareCrow are his scatological ones.


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