Comments: ENOUGH IS ENOUGH

Jesus Tapdancing Christ...I'm SO using that!

And Mr. Silly, I'd like to add something...

Please excuse me, because I'm not all that educated...but just because you know one person that went to Iraq and said the country is no better off than before the war started doesn't mean you have the inside scoop on what all soldiers believe to be true (whew, that was a big sentence...I'm glad I got through it). I know many, many, many people that have been to Iraq (including my uneducated husband). Most of the soldiers I've talked to, not all, believe in the war we are fighting. And the cause they are fighting for is much more important (and sexier, might I add) than your hoity-toity, know-it-all education (and trust me, I think education is extremely important).

And EVERYONE knows someone with a step-brother or half-cousin that is pen pals with someone in Iraq. But dude, you can't go using that as an argument against the war. Educated people like you should already know that.

Posted by Erin at March 5, 2006 12:02 PM

Hey, I was playing the gadfly here long before Mr. Silly showed up---how come *I* never a post like this? My degree is in philosophy, not classics, but I can be JUST as big of a douche bag. LOL

Posted by Pericles at March 5, 2006 02:11 PM

Thank you as usual for humorously representing the nutbrain prowar crowd. Someone posts a relatively nice message full of lists of points that pretty much shows you to be silly (maybe the secret reason for his moniker) and you say you want to kick him in the balls. Then you go on about his attitude -- never address a single point. It's great! I can't wait til you get back to posting about your doggie though. The ways the prowar wingnuts are crumbling is pure entertainment.

Posted by question at March 5, 2006 04:31 PM

Odd, the gist I get from Sarah's irritation at Mr. Silly is that he's an arrogant blowhard smugly certain he's so much smarter than the mere peons he addresses here.

Posted by Patrick Chester at March 6, 2006 02:16 AM

Mr. Silly,

Your lame commentary has been weighing on my mind all day. Have you ever hear of "United We Stand?" Our president, who, by the way, was elected through a democratic vote, made a decision. If you don't like it -- either do something positive about it or quit complaining. You obviously don't know how to channel your energy in positive ways. Instead, you insist on looking back to decisions made over 3 years ago and dwelling on every negative aspect of this war.

I am quite enraged about how you've talked to this military wife. Until you've spent a month in the shoes of her husband or herself, how dare you tell a woman whose husband serves in our military that our soldiers are not making a difference. I don't know who your "sources" are, but I can tell you that my husband is on his second tour to Iraq and the majority of Iraqis he comes into contact with are happy we're there.

Have a little respect next time -- for our president, our country, and the families that serve it.

Posted by Rachel at March 6, 2006 03:21 AM

Yes, Mr. Silly, be like the Republicans, who never complain about what Democratic presidents do .

Posted by Pericles at March 6, 2006 03:40 AM

Oh my...each time I've read the comments on this post, I've wanted to react but couldn't quite find the words...all I can say is that 1) kudos to Sarah for saying enough is enough and 2) I'm sorry that I didn't know any sooner than this in my 26 years that being able to recite Homer from memory is enough to call oneself "smart." And here I thought you had to have a useful skill.

Posted by Nicole at March 6, 2006 05:03 AM

I have to assume that you have some personal background with the whole question of being educated, sorry if I hit a nerve. FWIW, I have met enough PhDs who are idiots that I don't take degrees too seriously, and consider education something that must be taken quite separately from one's formal schooling. FWIW, I left my job as a teacher at a university in part because I was so tired of the blowhards (though the politics, endless battles with relativism, and crap pay were also significant contributors). My comments that set things off were in response to Sarah saying that she could not acknowledge that there could be an argument for the invasion of Iraq being unjustified. Whether one agreed with an argument, certainly one could be made, so I took it as a position that is anti-learning. Perhaps it was a misunderstanding or terms, or her statemnt was just rhetorical. As an aside, looking at the the view that there are reasons for not invading besides the WMD question is not attacking our troops or my country, nor is it saying the troops do not make a difference, it is just part of what you should do if you are trying to grok.

I did not bring up my education until it was essentially called into question. I certainly do not wear my learning on my sleeve. If I wanted to brag, I would have done so long ago, and I have a lot of accomplishments I could have thrown out (I can play almost a good quarter of Django Reinhardt's guitar solos, I have translated many of the Upanishads for Sanskrit, as well as reading most of Plato, Aristotle, Plotinus, and Homer in the original Greek, I have played through Book 1 of The Well-Tempered Clavier on my piano - some of those Fugues are really tough, I have raised three really good kids - and more). Up to now I have refrained, since I don't think those accomplishments have much bearing on discussions about politics, and I haven't claimed that I am a better person for any of it. It looks like some people take things that way, which say more about their insecurities than anything else.

For those who think I am trying to be an arrogant meanie, you should realize that if I simply wanted to attack someone I could go savaging with a full scorched earth attack full of vicious rhetoric and some seriously harsh personal attacks. I haven't, since I am a compassionate person, so that's not what I do. (While I am not arrogant, I am always happy to mention that I am kind and compassionate, since there is never any shame in promoting those values, and the world needs more of both.) Since I do have an academic background, some people think I am an evil bastard just by virtue of my choice of language and argumentation style, there is nothing I can or will do about that. I recall one of your posters criticized me for using the term 'non sequitur,' there is really nothing I can say to that.

For those who have were wondering, I chose the name Mr. Silly for four reasons:
1) so that others do not take me too seriously including myself.
2) so that I can quickly draw out those who are inclined to ad hominems and ignore them.
3) my daughter calls me Mr. Silly.
4) I use a different nickname on most sites, so I was scraping the bottom of the barrel.

Finally being able to recite the whole of Homer or Plato's Republic in the original Greek does make one really smart. If you don't believe me try it. I got through book one of the Oddysey after a few months, and never got past it. Lots of really smart people have abilities that are not useful in the mundane practical sense, and the world is a better place because of it.

Again, sorry that I got you so upset.

Posted by Mr. Silly at March 7, 2006 05:31 AM

Mr Silly -- What you said was

I think that you might want to face the fact that even if we had found WMD in Iraq, with the debacle that it has turned into now, one could justifiably say that it still was neither justified nor worth it for the Americans or the Iraqis.

I focused on the "face the fact" part of the sentence and had an immediate and emotional reaction to the condescention I heard. That's why I said I will "face no such fact": that was my response, and my argument was whether it's a FACT that the war was not worth it. You clearly focused on the "one could justifiably say" aspect of the sentence, and once you explained yourself further, your sentence made more sense. I still don't agree with the idea behind the sentence, but yes, with the more wishy-washy "one could justifiably say" in there, you do have a point. But one can "say" anything...I think only time will tell in this situation.

Anyway, the only education I admire is hard sciences and math. I don't even admire my own degrees, so I'm sorry if I'm not impressed with your list of geniuses.

I guess because I don't comment on other websites, I'm not used to having to make my comments come out the way I mean them to. I must say that your tone is very harsh, whether you mean it to be or not. You sound like you think you're better than everyone else commenting here. If that's not the case, you might want to rethink your commenting style.

Posted by Sarah at March 7, 2006 07:39 AM

Sarah,

I used to be much more impressed with hard sciences, but now that I work in industry, I think that the humanities are more impressive. It's nbbeen my experisnce that a well rounded education in the humanities makesa person more fully human (though I admit there are a lot of not-well-rounded folks out there). A solid education in the hard sciencss is impressive, but often those sorts still haven't thought a lot about the more important questions in life. I expect it has a lot to do with one's exposure and one's ideals. Certainly neither is easy.

As for my tone, I don't know what to say, other than that I don't think I sound harsh, so there's not much I can do about it. Maybe I am too used to arguing with people who go for the jugular.

Pericles,

I did Philosophy for my undergrad, and focused on Plato/Aristotle/Plotinus later in Grad. School. I was really torn between doing Phil, and doing Classics. I went with Classics, since I was more interested in the Ancients than the Moderns.

Posted by Mr. Silly at March 7, 2006 02:24 PM

Ack, I kant type.

Posted by Mr. Silly at March 7, 2006 02:25 PM

Drop me an e-mail, Silly. I had a friend do a Ph.D. in your program; I curious if you would have been there at the same time.

Posted by Pericles at March 7, 2006 04:32 PM