Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Just to let you know I'm not dead

As I warned three weeks ago, posting here has been very spotty because of some unexpected changes which include working more hours (good) and an impelled move to be closer to work (bad).

But just to let you know that I'm not quite dead and I haven't packed it in - although the thought has crossed my mind - I thought I'd drop by to offer my growing list of Right Wing Debate Tactics. Feel free to add your own. In fact, I'd welcome proposed additions. (I of course am the sole judge of whether or not they make the list. It is, after all, my list.)

Tactic #1: Deny, deny, deny!

Tactic #2: Spin, spin, spin!

Tactic #3: When facts are undeniable, change the subject, preferably by applying Tactic #4 and/or Tactic #5.

Tactic #4: Issue a lengthy, ranting denunciation of "the left" of the form "What about..." something somehow vaguely comparable to that of which you're accused, being sure to include the words "hypocrites" and/or "hypocrisy," thereby arguing that the left can't legitimately criticize the right - while by the very act of using this tactic insisting that the right can continue to criticize the left. Where possible, include the phrase "you liberals."

Tactic #5: Express "shock" and "outrage" at the "uncivil" and "rude" language or behavior of opponents; if pressed on your own language or behavior, you have a menu of five options, which can be used singly or in combination: a) accuse "the left" of censorship, b) pass it off as a "joke" and bemoan the "angry, humorless" left, c) denounce "political correctness," d) say "they did if first" even if they didn't, or e) when really trapped, declare you "regret if anyone was offended" - which doesn't actually admit it was offensive.

Tactic #6: Make the particular stand for the whole. That is, find something offensive or silly some liberal or leftist somewhere sometime said or did and declare it as identifying the entire left half of the American political spectrum. Where possible, demand your opponents "prove" they do not agree with whatever it is by spending their time attacking the author of the cited particular instead of you.

Tactic #7: It's the fault of the "liberal media." (Losing effectiveness due to overuse, but still potent when carefully applied.)

Tactic #8: It's all Bill Clinton's fault. (Of decreasing utility, but still handy.)

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