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This is just painful to watch (update)
Posted by: McQ on Saturday, July 26, 2008

If you've never seen an idiot try to spin something so hard smoke starts coming out of his ears, watch this.

Yes, that's a younger Harry Reid getting it so wrong it is just painful to watch. This is one half of the brain trust that "leads" Congress today. Leaves you all warm and fuzzy doesn't it?

(HT: The Lonely Conservative)

UPDATE: If you're into severe masochism, try this.
 
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I almost had to bill you for a new monitor since I barely could restrain myself from punching it (hyperbole folks, I’m not really violent).

It’s not forced because you can choose the way it gets taken from you... Lovely.
 
Written By: Robb Allen
URL: http://blog.robballen.com
Thanks for the H/T!
 
Written By: Lonely Conservative
URL: http://www.lonelyconservative.com
I’m sorry but I just couldn’t watch that all the way to the end. Remind me again of the approval rating for congress.
 
Written By: tom scott
URL: http://
Weird Harry ... Is there a video where he talks about drilling new wells to get oil and how that will make the price go up?
 
Written By: bill-tb
URL: http://
I keep on saying this, and I know there are some out there that don’t take me seriously when I do: Today’s liberal/left is infused with post-modernist thought, and that makes it literally impossible to have a debate with them.

They believe that it’s all a matter of opinion and definition, and they reserve the right to redefine terms on the fly so they don’t have to defend the obviously indefensible.

This is as clear an example as you’ll ever see. If you strapped a lie detector to Harry Reid during this exchange, I’m convinced it would show that he thought he was telling the literal truth. There’s no deception in his mind in redefining "voluntary" to mean whatever he needs it to mean, as long as his ultimate objectives are moral in his mind. His long term objectives are in line with leftist, government-control principles, and he will *literally* say anything to defend those objectives.

This is why I’ve stopped, for the most part, debating with leftists. I can’t. They demand that I accept their terms of debate, which are contrary to Enlightenment thinking. I can debate with a conservative because most of them (with creationists being notable exceptions) accept the philosophical principles of the Enlightenment. Leftists do not. They believe post-modernism supercedes the Enlightenment, and they refuse to debate on Enlightenment terms, as Harry Reid showed in this interview.

On a related note, that’s why the ridiculous stuff Obama says will not faze his leftist supporters. They are emotionally convinced that he shares their long-term objectives, so in their minds he has the right to say anything to further those objectives. Oh, they may squeal when Obama throws a bone to the center occasionally, but in the end the accept the same principles about rhetoric that both Communists and fundamentalist Muslims do: that it is acceptable to use deception, confusion, or any other rhetorical trick (up to and including what an Enlightenment thinker would call outright dishonesty) to gain your objectives. And they can do it while simultaneously believing that they are more moral then the people they are lying to.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
Yet what is the greater sin? Reid’s spinning or Helfeld’s tie?

This exchange is reminiscent of the exchange with a certain someone regarding income taxes earlier this week: "I concede all of your points, but you’re still wrong!"

Billy: I believe you are on to something.
 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://
The difference between a voluntary and an involuntary tax system is that, although both systems withhold taxes from your paycheck, only a voluntary system makes you fill out a tax return, too. Got it.

 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Did anyone else get a message saying "this video is no longer available"?

Rick
 
Written By: Rick Caird
URL: http://
I got the video after a reload of the page and trying again. I am kind of sorry I did though.

Rick
 
Written By: Rick Caird
URL: http://
Rick,

I didn’t get that message. And I often get that message when I’m trying to watch YouTube videos via another site.
 
Written By: Rory Daulton
URL: http://
I didn’t get that message. And I often get that message when I’m trying to watch YouTube videos via another site.
Hmm. I got a message that said, "Warning. This man is an ignorant douche bag".
 
Written By: Is
URL: http://
Today’s liberal/left is infused with post-modernist thought, and that makes it literally impossible to have a debate with them.

They believe that it’s all a matter of opinion and definition, and they reserve the right to redefine terms on the fly so they don’t have to defend the obviously indefensible.
Billy — I’d like to hear an expansion of this thesis on the left and postmodernism. I don’t disagree but I’m also struck by the left’s frequent refusal to acknowledge that many of their hallowed "facts" are indeed opinions, and that many things—such as the Iraq War—are complex, difficult issues upon which intelligent, informed citizens might indeed disagree.
 
Written By: huxley
URL: http://
...I’m also struck by the left’s frequent refusal to acknowledge that many of their hallowed "facts" are indeed opinions...
If you dig into post-modernism, you find that there’s really not a differentiation between facts and opinion. In post-modernism, the concept of "truth" (on which the concept of "fact" is based) is not the Enlightenment concept that you and I share. In post-modernism, "truth" is socially and mentally constructed as something a person or group of people have come to believe, based on their individual views.

They deny the concept of objective truth, arguing that individuals are incapable of being sufficiently objective to ascertain that something is truthful in the sense that you and I would use. Different viewpoints are supposed to be respected, and there is no privileged viewpoint that establishes truth. Therefore it’s all really opinion; each individual’s view is supposed to be just as good as the next person’s perception of the world.

I know this sounds rather silly, and I’m equally sure a post-modernist would complain that I’m misrepresenting their views. But I’ve looked at this stuff a lot, and explaining it in a way that would be considered clear from an Enlightenment point of view appears impossible. From an Enlightenment standpoint, post-modernism denies basic axioms and contains internal contradictions. So it sounds ridiculous to just about anyone who embraces Enlightenment thinking.
...and that many things—such as the Iraq War—are complex, difficult issues upon which intelligent, informed citizens might indeed disagree.
The kind of debate that "intelligent, informed" citizens might have over such issues doesn’t matter, or even make any sense, to a post-modernist. Since it’s all opinion, in most cases, the right position is a matter of intuition or feeling for them. It’s not really that you disagree so much as you are denying that they have the right to hold their position because of mere intuition. You want to bring facts and logic into the argument. From their point of view, that’s not fair. You are not subscribing to the tenets of post-modernism, in which facts and logic, to the extent that they even exist, are trumped by intuition.

Since you deny the very basis on which they formed their opinions, you’re wrong, period. In a sense, you’re an unbeliever, and true believers don’t deign to argue their faith with unbelievers. They just insist that their faith is correct, and you lack something in your mind because you can’t see or feel the intuitive "truth" of their philosophy. (Comparison to religion intentional.)
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
Oh my goodness that was painful. What an ignorant ass.
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
Billy — Thanks for the response, but the people I’m talking about don’t consider themselves post-modernists—though they may behave like it—but clear-eyed rationalists carrying the torch of liberal enlightenment values.

Recently I was following up my interest in extraterrestrial intelligence and I found my way to David Brin’s blog. Brin is a CalTech trained scientist, turned science-fiction writer, now also a Hollywood screenwriter. His book "The Postman" was made into a Kevin Costner film in the late 90s.

Brin is eminently rational until he addresses the Iraq War, the current administration, Republicans and conservatives, then he goes into hissing, spitting, rants. I’m taking him and his readers on in a long blog thread titled, ironically, "Win Over Those Conservatives Who Still Think." Some of his readers are responding to my posts in a calm, rational way; others, most notably Dr. Brin himself, are losing it entirely.
Dig it, I am through with Huxley. We have been educated about the top right wing tactic. Never look at the big picture. Pick a particular point of minutiuae — e.g. a public opinion poll among Iraqis who happen to cooperate with some corrupt pollsters — and worry that narrow topic to death...

...while ignoring the major points we raise over and over.

The destruction of our military.
The destruction of our reserves.
The destruction of our economy.
The destruction of our alliances.
The destruction of our moral leadership.
The destruction of our reputation for invincibility.
The destruction of our budget.
The destruction of our planet.
The destruction of our civil service and US officer corps.
The destruction of our lawful systems for honest government...

...and so on, a list so calamitous and long and huge and glaring that it truly takes psychopathology to keep performing these mental trick we’ve observed.
—David Brin
Win Over Those Conservatives Who Still Think
 
Written By: huxley
URL: http://
huxley, it’s been my experience that it’s not uncommon for someone to be perfectly rational about their work or about the hard sciences, and yet have a distinctly post-modern approach to politics and the soft sciences.

For many, economics seems to be the dividing line.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
All I could think each time he said the word ’voluntary’ is: "You keep using that word. I don’t think it means what you think it means."
 
Written By: Phlinn
URL: http://

 
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