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Gratuitous provocation is the reason a lot of people hate liberals.

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Richardo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:45 AM
Original message
Gratuitous provocation is the reason a lot of people hate liberals.
It's among the lowest forms of political discourse, and, I'm sorry to say, is not really all that shocking or edgy or courageous any more. It has not been since Abbie Hoffman's antics in 1968. Quite the contrary, it only demonstrates that the provocateur is wholly out of his (or her) intellectual depth, has been reduced to name-calling and tantrums, and is not to be taken as a serious thinker by anyone outside their own group of fawning acolytes.

Angry at something? Call them "motherfuckers"! Burn the flag! Throw blood on people! Yell! Stamp your feet! Hold your breath until you turn blue! Wave your arms and legs and scream while you lie helpless in your bassinet.

That'll teach em!

Provocation is a grandstand play, and it thrills the hometown fans. But really, who else cares? What other minds have been opened? What other opinions changed? Who besides the faithful even make it all the way through the screed? Precious few, I'd wager.

I'm embarrassed to admit that I was goaded into a visceral reaction to one such provocation on this board, and so I guess that poster won... something. I'll not be engaging that person or her adoring fans anymore, because I've taken a few deep breaths and realized that a post on an anonymous message board is meaningless and it's not worth my intellectual or emotional effort.


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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:50 AM
Response to Original message
1. I think the assumption is that both operate on a level playing field...
Edited on Sat Mar-07-09 11:51 AM by kentuck
Those that control the wealth and power are not equal to the average American. Sometimes in order to even be heard, the average guy has to scream. Otherwise he will be ignored by the system and those in power. That is also why those without power march for one cause or another. Those in control are not going to sit down for an honest discourse.

on edit: But I do understand your point. I have had similar discussions about Code Pink.
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G_j Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:52 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. thank you nt
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:01 PM
Response to Reply #1
13. When you throw a tantrum you look unreasonable so YOU LOSE.
The best approach is to use the other sides arguments and rhetoric against them by showing the internal intellectual inconsistency of their argument(s).

One of MY favorites is to use the Gospel of Matthew to point out to the Bible thumping crowd that Jesus actually opposed school prayer (among several other important points you can make - because hey Jesus was a long haired beard wearing sandal wearing liberal anti-establishment hippy... lol)

The other side EXPECTS you to sound like and talk like and act like a liberal.

They have been programmed for 20 years by Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, et. al. to expect that and how to respond to it. If you go after them in the manner they are already expecting, you really have no chance whatsoever other than to make yourself look foolish and irrelevant.

On the other hand, if you destroy their position by knowing and using their OWN rhetoric against them then they really have no way to defend against it and their whole world view then crumbles around them.

Only THEN you can very carefully walk them through why the liberal position makes more sense.

If you do it my way you come off as very reasonable and very smart and they end up being persuaded and converted or otherwise they are forced into the position of looking very foolish to themselves and anyone who might be around listening at the time.

Trust me this works. I've lived in the "red states" for much of my adult life and you can't win with the frontal assault in these places, you've got to outflank and discredit them using their own rhetoric.

(Just think of what Jon Stewart did to CNBC this week.)

Doug D.
Orlando, FL
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noamnety Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:06 PM
Response to Reply #1
15. Excellent summary.
women getting the vote
civil rights for black people
ending the vietnam war

Oppressed people never got rights from privileged people because they quietly wrote polite well-reasoned letters.

They got them by becoming so disruptive that elected officials started to fear they wouldn't be reelected.
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cliffordu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:51 AM
Response to Original message
2. Nice.
The house is on fire and you'd like everyone to line up by the door and raise our hands and say please and thank you.

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Lars39 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:52 AM
Response to Original message
3. Blind loyalty is the embarrassment.
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Xipe Totec Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:53 AM
Response to Original message
5. No, I think that's why people hate assholes
It has nothing to do with political affiliation.
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John Q. Citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:54 AM
Response to Original message
6. Who hates liberals?
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
7. EVERYONE needs to ask him/her-self "What is my REAL priority here?" "Power"? or Truth?
Edited on Sat Mar-07-09 11:57 AM by patrice
And, since most of the time there are no Absolute Truths, and especially no absolute semantic truths, "Power" is not Real.

Om namah Shivaya!
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bluestateguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
8. Penn and Teller really lit into the Code Pinkers on this issue
They spoke with some of the ladies who interrupted a congressional hearing on Iraq with their usual catcalls and rantings.

They were asked what they substantively accomplished and they basically could only say that their antics made them "feel good".
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baldguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #8
18. Code Pink reminds us of the truth - the Iraq War is illegal & immoral.
The very fact the MSM can belittle them while it simultaneously ignores what they have to say - and they can still get the message out - is a feat in itself.

Penn & Teller make a big show of being big libertarians - but they fall into the big trap: that the "conventional wisdom" established by corporate media propaganda is the objective truth, when its nothing of the sort.
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Deja Q Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
9. Liberals are more inclined to ask questions than to blindly hate anyone who doesn't think like them.
:shrug:

The mob mentality is for toddlers. Populism is for cowards. If we are for individuality, that is...
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:59 AM
Response to Original message
10. P.S. I agree that there are plenty of people EVERYWHERE who get their jollies out of
Ridicule.
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Zodiak Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:00 PM
Response to Original message
11. Yesterday it was Cenk and today it is someone else
Anyone else you want to start a thread about that you personally dislike but you know are well-liked on DU?

Perhaps the gratuitous provocation is more in the mirror than an external force?
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Cirque du So-What Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:21 PM
Response to Reply #11
21. My thoughts exactly
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MrPerson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:00 PM
Response to Original message
12. Does farting in their general direction count?
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Cleita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:04 PM
Response to Original message
14. No Richardo, they hate liberals because we are right, not because
we exercise our right of free speech and expression.
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MadHound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:07 PM
Response to Original message
16. One person's gratuitous provocation is another's civil disobedience
You really have to be careful where, and in what context you try to draw this line. To many, the Civil Rights protests of the fifties and sixties could be labeled as gratuitous provocation, same with the sixties anti-war protests, along with the various other protests of the subsequent decades. Living on the campus commons during the '80's could be considered by some as gratuitous provocation, but then again that gratuitous provocation actually helped bring about the end of South African apartheid :shrug:

As far as what goes on around here, frankly I take it all with a boulder size grain of salt. This isn't so much a forum for collective action or civil disobedience but rather more for socializing based around a particular, and rather loose set of ideological believes. That means that we can have gratuitous provocation over one's taste in music, just go check out the Lounge.
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Lars39 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:08 PM
Response to Original message
17. Just so everyone knows,,,this is a continuation of a flame in NanceGreggs thread:
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moggie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:20 PM
Response to Reply #17
20. Interesting priorities this guy has
A nine-year-old was raped, the church wanted her to continue suffering and probably die, claims the people who helped her are evil... and he's pissed off at liberals. :eyes:
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PeaceNikki Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:22 PM
Response to Reply #20
22. Right. His outrage at that story is directly correlated to his ability to agree with a poster on DU.
:eyes:
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paulk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:17 PM
Response to Original message
19. yup
and you've just described a good portion of what gets posted on this website...
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mitchum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:25 PM
Response to Original message
23. Nance is still right about the world's longest running corrupt international corporation
fuck a bunch of cross dressing con men
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cbayer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:26 PM
Response to Original message
24. Locking
Please do not start threads to continue arguments from other threads or to call out other members.

Thanks,

cbayer
DU Moderator
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