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Member since: Tue Sep 4, 2007, 07:36 AM
Number of posts: 7,735

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What's this "endorsement" thing?

We haven't got it in Scotland.

Is it like in being a secret club? Do you get cool stuff after being endorsed? Or does the endorsed person have to give YOU stuff? Or what?

I'm imagining a special, secret chamber of endorsement where the Endorserator, dressed in finest furry robes and a pointy hat, annoints the endorsed with an emormous, golden, fluffy endorsement stick in front of a sinister, wrinkly-faced crowd of steely-eyed endorsers.

Well, that's how we'd probably do it in the UK...

So minority voters have to be "appealed" to then? The candidate must be "appealing"?


Maybe it's an Americanism. I don't know.

The only reason I ask is that I've seen this phrase emerge elsewhere on the site, and it sounds deeply patronising to me...

It's just that, in Scotland, where I live, if someone said that they wanted to "appeal" to me or any of my fellow countrymen I'd be like: "Uh, WHUT, sir/ma'am? No I don't need cuddles, I want to know what you intend to do. Could you tell me what you intend to do, please?"

The use of the phrase "Hillary-hate" is a blatantly transparant and cynical ploy.

If you can't answer the case, label it. It's as simple as breathing.

The phrase has a kind of grim, disinterested, middlebrow cleverness, it carries the implication that the "hate" is unreasonable or lacking substance without responding to the content of the text that has been labelled as "hate". Thats the phrase's purpose, not to repel any genuine condition of tendentiousness, but to place certain candidates beyond criticism.

It's just exactly the same lazy gibberish we've all had to come to expect from certain people.

But, sigh, there you go. People without a case of their own are almost reduced to inventing labels with which to construct the nebulous appearance of unwholesomeness in their opponent's case.

"Gay agenda", anyone?

No politician is exempt from criticism. No politician has any right to operate without scrutiny.

Politicians seek power, power over US. Sometimes their aims are benevolent, sometimes their aims are malevolent (because power is very attractive to malevolent people) and sometimes their aims are self-serving.

Of all professions in need of criticism, politics is the the profession that needs it most. All the populace is affected by political power and thus all must be protected from the potential consequences of politicians acting malevolently or in self-serving processes. They are in power for our benefit, not theirs. That being the case we are those who establish what benefits are to be conferred upon us by them.

As politicians must vie with each other in gladatorial battles of popularity, emotions run high and investment in one's personal hero can distort perceptions of one's hero's antagonists.

Criticisms of a politician that are consequently rebuffed with attributions of tendentiousness on behalf of the critic begin to seem more likely to be true rather than less, as the criticism remains unaddressed, and the accusation of tendentiousness is the easiest thing in the world to make as it can almost never be proved or disproved any way, only hinted at, suggested, or boldly asserted.

The accusation of tendentiousness is highly attractive, as it costs nothing to make, but it very often escapes the notice of the accuser that there is also almost nothing to gain... UNLESS the accuser simply wishes to stuff the accused's life with junk. Tying up an interlocutor with constant demands to demonstrate the absence of tendentiousness is an excellent way of wasting their time and depleting their morale. If the accused is wise, and calculates that nothing in particular is lost from refusing to answer the charge, the charge remains nothing more than an opinion.

Loudly declaring that one has "debunked" something, said debunking consisting of repeating loudly and pointlessly "it's not true, it's not true, it's not true! See, I've debunked it!", isn't a "debunking" of anything. It's just a contradiction, which is not the same thing. For something to be debunked, reliable information which demonstrates clearly that the position being debunked cannot be true (not "probably isn't","doesn't hold water", but CANNOT be true) by virtue of the weight of evidence presented against the position being debunked, which is typically incontrovertible evidence from sources external to the antagonists, must be presented.

Accusations of "whining" can be dismissed outright as they are no more than an attempt to manage perceptions of the criticism and thus do not actually address the criticism. If no alternative understanding of the thing that is being "whined" about is presented, no case for the critic's tendentiousness has been made.

When I see criticisms of a politician being rebuffed with cries of "You WOULD say that" my little antennae poke up and start listening. Do I think to myself "Oh, look! A tendentious critic!"?


I think to myself: "Oh look. An accusation of tendentiousness in lieu of a response to the subject."

(Tendentious: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/tendentious - I use this term as the word "bias" has multiple meanings and in previous political discussions I've encountered the idea that an accusation of "bias" cannot really be considered meaningful is it isn't always clear that "bias" results from non-rigorous consideration of issues. Being left wing is a "bias", but is not necessarily tendentious).

I could never vote for ANY candidate whose supporters drive Volvos.

How could anyone who drives a Volvo relate to the disenfranchised?

Now, maybe if some of these supporters got some teeth knocked out in a fist fight.... well, THEN I guess I could vote for their candidate. Or if they were ugly. Or had no family left. Possibly if they had part of their lower colon collapse and have to have it removed, maybe then I could believe that they were capable of empathy.

Potentially a life changing experience like having an HIV positive relative would make a difference to me, or perhaps being born blind. I guess if they'd had to have one of their testicles removed through testicular cancer or were homeless through being made redundant or had part of their face burned off in a house fire, they might understand.

It's not like I'm setting the bar particularly high, here. How about being arrested after being falsely accused for something you didn't do? Or being thrown out of your house because your parents don't like your boyfriend? Or overcoming heroin addiction? Or being terminally ill?

What about something as simple as having fucking kids? Ya know? And wanting the world they're going to grow up in to get better rather than get worse(like it seems to all the goddamn time)?

Anything. But what do we get?


I have to say it's very disappointing.

Volvos, of all things, it's so... I don't know. Safe. Boring. LIBERAL. It's so embarassing. I can imagine Republicans laughing at them. Volvos! At least the Replublicans have the guts to express their inner ugliness by driving SUVs. These guys hide it all behind a stupid veneer of Volvo-y, European pseudoliberal vehicular.... BLAH.

I just don't understand how these people can present themselves to me driving their stupid Volvos and expect me to take them seriously.

How could they ever expect to understand ME?

I drive a BMW.

"Of COURSE we're allowed to scream at you. You're the GOOD GUY."

"If we screamed at the bad guys, they'd SCREAM BACK.

Where else are we going to unload all the emotional backwash from our previous lost battles with the bad guys except on the good guys?

By the way, you're all bad guys.

Except, you know, well, you're the GOOD bad guys."

So..... What is protest actually FOR, then, my dears?

What purpose does it serve?

What goals might it succeed in acheiving that could not be acheived through other routes?

What's the big idea, wise guy?

And how would the answers to the above questions affect WHO and WHERE one protests, my sweets?

MOST interested in your inputs.

If you decide I am your enemy....

Then, eventually, that's it. I AM your enemy, whether I like it or not.

I can attempt to persuade you otherwise, but if my attempts to persuade you otherwise are used by you to continue to persuade yourself of your original decision (and it is your decision), there is, in the end, nothing I can do.

That's how enmity works.

"You hate me!"

"No, I really don't."

"You're arguing with me! That means you hate me!"

Has there ever been a process more farcically manipulative and self-perpetuating?

Bullying is not about the victim. Bullying is about the bully.

Bullies will make up anything.

They will convince themselves and as many other sidekicks as they can muster of anything they can that gives them the permission to abandon responsibility for managing their emotions appropriately and pretending it's someone else's fault.

There isn't a word coming out of them about their victims that they truly believe. Even if they did truly believe any of it, they wouldn't truly care. They don't need to believe it, or care, they just need to say it. So that they can hear themselves say it. So that they can be the kind of person who is allowed to say things like that. It's all about them.

That's why they hang around in groups. They need loud support, strength in numbers. They haven't the faith in their own statements sufficient to give them the stamina to continue with their campaigns alone. There's no end goal in sight for them, it's the process itself that they need. The process can be shortened by simply wasting their opponent's time on endless defense and that can be achieved by dividing the work of attack among a group of perpetrators.

It is not necessarily a good idea to respond in terms of the content of their statements. Typically they pick subjects that are inherently nebulous or founded in clouds of vaguely related perceptions rather than facts.

When bullies mature and have mastered their skills, courtesy becomes one of ther favourite weapons. They house an imaginary audience applausing their restraint. All in the bully group house this audience and play the role of the audience member when necessary.

Many adult bullies specialise in subtle mechanisms consisting of sidelong suggestion rather than outright attack. This is highly effective in engendering frustrated responses which can be easily characterised as tendentious.

Well, I know who I'll be voting for. NICOLA STURGEON...

First Minister of Scotland, party - Scottish National Party (currently being compared to racist orgnisations in the UK and the EU on a regular basis in comment sections all over the UK press). Tney've been in power in Holyrood (Scottih Parliament) for some time now. Incredibly, they are MORE popular now than on the date of their last Scottish election victory.

. Gender balanced her cabinet
. Wants to end austerity
. Recently released policy on maximising economic opportunities for women
. Wants rid of Trident (UK's nukes)
. Wants to focus healthcare on prevention rather than treatment (studies have shown that this leads to longer . lives and higher quality of life as well as saving money)
. Wants internal investment in infrastructure to improve employment rather than relying on zero hour . contracts and bullshit McJobs to massage the figures
. Wants to increase immigration as immigrants are a net benefit to the economy
. Wants to increase the minimum wage

.. and so on.

Currently polling at around 50% in Scotland. Nearest competitor is Jim Murphy's party on 26%.

(I don't get to vote for her personally, I hasten to add. I'll be voting for her candidate in my constituency)

So, there you go. I GET to vote for people like that in my country. Don't you think it woud be good if you guys got to vote for someone like that in the US, my DU friends?

It is predicted that on 7th May Ms Sturgeon's party will be holding a sizeable proportion of seats in Scotland.

(BTW, Nicola doesn't have a logo)

(Also BTW, I'm not trolling or "boasting" or something. I just think it would be good if you guys saw that tiny insiginificant nations like my cuddly little country, Scotland, seem to be getting a better deal.)
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