Friday, July 23, 2010


RJ Eskow had the lead article on Huffington Post yesterday comparing the treatment of Shirley Sherrod with recent attempts to alter Social Security.

It's a well reasoned article. You can disagree with some of his conclusions I suppose, but it'd be difficult to argue with his facts. Even so, I expected the comments to reflect some arguments from further left and dismissals from the right.

But I expected at least most of these to be well-reasoned too. Talk about disappointment.

With only a few exceptions, the comments range from ill- or misinformed to just plain dumb. And seeming deliberately so. As if their originators were determined to prove their inability to reason.

This is to be expected to some extent from ideologues (I've been guilty of it myself at times) but the breadth of ignorance and seemingly deliberate refusal to use any reasoning whatsoever to counter his argument left me, well, deeply disappointed.

I blame much of this on the rightwing strategy of repeating misinformation and lies along with discrediting logical and reasoned thinking as "liberal" and intolerant declamations as fact on whatever line they're pushing for the day or week etc. as irrefutable because they say so (like insisting there is no global warming despite all evidence to the contrary and then when that repeated insistence seems to be losing adherents switching to there has always been periods of global warming, etc.).

Anyway, you can check it out for yourself here.

[PS: Woops! It looks like the comments section for Eskow's article was either amended or they added new comments at the front that are much more reasonable than the ones I read yesterday when this article first appeared. So my response in this post seems a bit over-the-top now, which I take full responsibility for and am only grateful that more reasonable and informed voices have been added to the comments thread including, it would seem, at the beginning of it.]


Butch in Waukegan said...

I read Eskow’s article and think he makes a lot of good points. I cruised through several pages of letters and saw the usual assortment of view points and levels of understanding. To me it was the usual mix one finds in a HP comment section. I am sure there are a few “dark age” comments, but you don’t quote any specific one. Any examples?

The political elites have wanted to “reform” Social Security for a long time. Reportedly Clinton was in the late planning stages when the Lewinsky affair made it impossible to introduce. GW Bush’s campaign to turn SS’s big pile of money over to Wall Street faltered, and now Obama has revived revived it.

The elites are all pushing the idea that there is a deficit / social security “crisis”, defining the terms of debate in order to reach a predetermined conclusion: More wealth transfer.

JIm said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

all that The Government has to do to make Social Security go BOOM
is to default on all of those USA government securities that the SS Trust Fund
invested in to make a bit of interest "secured" GAURANTEED by the Govt on the money....

so much for TRUST-ing our flag-in-the-lapel-cross around-the- neck "leaders"

they ALWAYS tell the truth!

JIm said...

Journ o list group organized by Ezra Klein

Hey Mike,

The next time you talk to your friend K, ask if he was part of Ezra's email group to protect Obama and call conservatives