Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Why I Hate Lefties (1)

Those of you who have been following this blog for some time may be wondering why the Ian_QT of old seems to have turned into a red-faced, keyboard-bashing ranter in recent weeks.

I lay much of the blame for this shift at the feet of the opponents of the leftist persuasion, with whom I go into keyboard battle most days.


1. The double standards

Otherwise known as 'those who dish it out but can't take it'.

Long-standing left-wing blogger Sunny Hundal has a post up at Pickled Politics, in which he discusses the ins and outs of writing for Comment Is Free. I've never written 'for' CiF, but I do comment there quite often. One of his remarks that caught my eye referred to the "disproportionate amount of abuse" that women bloggers get in the comments:

many frequently get called a man-hating lesbian for no good reason.
Hmm, I thought. One woman blogger in particular came to mind. Feminist writer Julie Bindel is a prime example of the double standards phenomenon. Until last December when she threw in the Comment is Free towel with a catalogue of "what I and other feminists have to put up with" entitled 'Why Men Hate Me', Bindel repeatedly used her CiF platform to write about men in ways which, were they targeted at any other group, would be classed as bigotry.
From this hateful article (Nov '07), for instance:
...chanting fabulous slogans such as "men off the streets"...
...naming men as the problem...
Male violence towards women and children - yes, male - is pandemic. We must force them to change - to stop raping, killing and abusing us.

In response to a similarly hateful Bindel piece a year previous, Clairwil (yes, this Clairwil) joined the 'abusive men', describing Bindel's rhetoric as:
...Anti-male bigotry [that] is such a bore and remote from how the vast majority of women live.

Bindel is not the only female left-wing commentator who is good at dishing it out but rather less good at taking it. Polly Toynbee, the Labour-supporting, Tuscan villa-owning voice of the poor who makes so many factual errors in her columns that for a time there was a dedicated 'fact-checking' blog, is another classic example.

Polly described Boris Johnson as a
self-absorbed sociopath and serial liar
and described opponents of further integration into the European Union as

Yes, Polly Toynbee is no stranger to vitriol. But when similar vitriol is thrown back in her direction in the comments threads, all of a sudden it is a different ball game. It would be reasonable to expect that a columnist who uses such language in their articles would be one of the last to whinge about a lack of "civil discourse" on the blogs.

Nope. Polly's hypocrisy knows no bounds.

It isn't just the women and the professionals who display the double standards. It's lefty bloggers too. Justin McKeating of Chicken Yoghurt (who we'll be seeing again later in this series) attacked Devil's Kitchen for objecting to a Bishop comparing climate change deniers sceptics to Josef Fritzl. But then, less than a week later, he posts this:
The next person to make a non-ironic and in-all-seriousness comparison between the Nazis and anybody else in the comments on this blog is banned for all eternity from making any other contribution.

It’s not clever. It’s not satirical. It’s rhetorically empty and it makes you look like a tit. That is all.
I'm not the only one baffled by this. As Longrider put it, "I can’t help but smile – after all, he is now doing exactly what he castigated the Devil's Kitchen or doing only a few days previously (i.e. dishing it out, but getting all po-faced when it comes flying back)".

For a final example of what I'm talking about, I turn to the left-wing blogger I have butted heads with more than any other: Paulie of Never Trust a Hippy. Paulie bemused Larry Teabag and Flying Rodent as well as myself by defending "demented ranting wreck" and prolific utiliser of the C-word Will Rubbish, while at the same time castigating Devil's Kitchen for, well, utilising the C-word prolifically:
Paulie - please can we have an official ruling on whether you count your brain-damaged friend here as a "negativist", and "a nasty abusive shithead", etc. given that he's dementedly rude, and incapable of anything except calling everyone he disagrees with a "c@#t".

It seems to me that he ticks all the boxes in your complaint-form against DK (or Roger Thornhill), except for being on your side.
(Larry Teabag).

Paulie later replied, denying that Will "gets 'brain damaged' on me", despite the fact that just a few comments previously Will had written:
larry teabag -- vermin -- should be put in a camp.
If this isn't double standards (read the whole thread to get a better idea) I don't know what is.

Yes, today I hate lefties, and will tomorrow and the day after. But only the lefties who display these double standards regarding their opponents, and those who do nothing to stop them. Are you in either one of those categories? If so, then I despise you.*

* The post title and the final paragraph are adapted from here. More to come.


Larry Teabag said...

I definitely think the Chicken Yoghurt case doesn't fit into the general pattern (unless you can produce evidence of him "dishing out" Nazi comparisons). I don't know what provoked that post, but it's not even obvious that he was ruffled by being called a Nazi personally, rather than a general objection to the enormous overuse of that weak rhetorical device.

Otherwise yes, I entirely agree.

But this phenomenon is by no means confined to the left: which was exactly the point that Justin made, and very entertainingly so. And this is, of course, precisely why I hate Righties.

Why I Like Julie said...

It seems a bit of a shame to equate Julie Bindel's admittedly often provocative, but thoughtful, lucid and serious journalism with a bunch of keyboard warriors calling each other rude words over the internet-but perhaps this is why I'll never understand the blogosphere! :-)

Would you not be doing better to revert back to the measured and polite tones of the "old" QT? You never know, some of your compadres migth even follow your lead...

QT said...

@larry: The connection with Chicken Yoghurt and the double standards argument is this post of his, in the Liberal Conspiracy thread about the Bishop of Stafford:

""Nazi stood for National Socialist and the Nazis espoused collectivist, not individualist positions"

10 out of 10 for historical accuracy, 0 out of 10 for rhetorical relevance, QT. Just where you think this sits in a modern political debate other than as a cheap shot to wind up the opposition needs to be explained. Modern British socialists are similar to 1940s fascists only in the minds of the likes of Chris Mounsey.

I think all this all sits easily with you QT because it’s not you and yours on the receiving end of such crap. As I’ve pointed you, your mob squeal like pigs the second the situation’s reversed."

QT said...

@why i like julie: OK. The problem I have isn't that Julie (Bindel) is provocative. It's that she's provocative and then complains about the response she gets when people are provoked.

This is exactly what I was saying in the post - she dishes it out, but then can't take it when some of it comes back her way.


Ian QT said:

@why i like julie: OK. The problem I have isn't that Julie (Bindel) is provocative. It's that she's provocative and then complains about the response she gets when people are provoked.

This is exactly what I was saying in the post - she dishes it out, but then can't take it when some of it comes back her way.

What I was trying to say, and obviously could've expressed better (or perhaps more aggressively!), was that, as a man, I don't find Julie Bindel's writings offensive-certainly not offensive or controversial enough to warrant the strong language her posts seem to attract from "bloggers".

Larry Teabag said...

I can't see anything to object to in Justin's comment to you - unless he's called you a Nazi some other place - it hardly constitutes "dishing it out" does it?

Voltaire's Priest said...

For what it's worth, I hardly think that Will Rubbish is a good yardstick via which to measure the left wing blogosphere. He's almost as well-loved by most of the left, as he is by libertarians such as yourself.

QT said...

@voltaires: I never said that Will is representative of the left-wing blogosphere as a whole, just a certain element therein.

As the footnote indicates, the post title and the last paragraph are somewhat tongue-in-cheek.