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Wed Aug 19, 2015, 06:13 AM

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

Last edited Wed Aug 19, 2015, 09:54 AM - Edit history (1)

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!"?

No.

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).

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Reply No politician is exempt from criticism. No politician has any right to operate without scrutiny. (Original post)
sibelian Aug 2015 OP
Scuba Aug 2015 #1
sibelian Aug 2015 #2
MoveIt Aug 2015 #3
sibelian Aug 2015 #4
MoveIt Aug 2015 #5
sibelian Aug 2015 #6

Response to sibelian (Original post)

Wed Aug 19, 2015, 07:21 AM

1. But isn't claiming that a source for something is right-wing the same as debunking?

 

Even if that same something is also coming from left-wing sources?

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Response to Scuba (Reply #1)

Wed Aug 19, 2015, 07:28 AM

2. Of course it isn't. That's just dumb, insensate labelling.


It's about as farcical a non-debunking as you can get.

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Response to Scuba (Reply #1)

Wed Aug 19, 2015, 07:33 AM

3. If you are a simpleton who thinks you are helping your candidate

 

by using smears by association and assume that the readers are fucking stupid, then yes yes you do that.

With fucking impunity.

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Response to MoveIt (Reply #3)

Wed Aug 19, 2015, 09:47 AM

4. Well, Moveit...you are right.


Absolutely right.

And yet, look at this message board.

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Response to sibelian (Reply #4)

Wed Aug 19, 2015, 09:48 AM

5. Only with the help of my

 

extensive and growing ignore list!

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Response to MoveIt (Reply #5)

Wed Aug 19, 2015, 09:52 AM

6. Mine is richly populated.


I used to maintain an open door policy, probably because I like to think of myself as an expansive, generous, open-minded guy... but I then figured: "Who actually benefits from my doing that? Heh, not me. Nor THEM."

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