Purity Trolls and Other Scourges


Glenn Greenwald:

Then there’s the inability and/or refusal to recognize that a political discussion might exist independent of the Red v. Blue Cage Match. Thus, any critique of the President’s exercise of vast power (an adversarial check on which our political system depends) immediately prompts bafflement (I don’t understand the point: would Rick Perry be any better?) or grievance (you’re helping Mitt Romney by talking about this!!). The premise takes hold for a full 18 months — increasing each day in intensity until Election Day — that every discussion of the President’s actions must be driven solely by one’s preference for election outcomes (if you support the President’s re-election, then why criticize him?).

Worse still is the embrace of George W. Bush’s with-us-or-against-us mentality as the prism through which all political discussions are filtered. It’s literally impossible to discuss any of the candidates’ positions without having the simple-minded — who see all political issues exclusively as a Manichean struggle between the Big Bad Democrats and Good Kind Republicans or vice-versa — misapprehend “I agree with Candidate X’s position on Y” as “I support Candidate X for President” or I disagree with Candidate X’s position on Y” as “I oppose Candidate X for President.” Even worse are the lying partisan enforcers who, like the Inquisitor Generals searching for any inkling of heresy, purposely distort any discrete praise for the Enemy as a general endorsement.

So potent is this poison that no inoculation against it exists. No matter how expressly you repudiate the distortions in advance, they will freely flow. Hence: I’m about to discuss the candidacies of Barack Obama and Ron Paul, and no matter how many times I say that I am not “endorsing” or expressing support for anyone’s candidacy, the simple-minded Manicheans and the lying partisan enforcers will claim the opposite.


For generations left-wing politics has suffered from what we now call purity trolls. Even in the days before Al Gore created the internet, the Ideology Police would cause schisms and conflict within left-wing movements and demanding absolute political correctness. These are the people who would object to holding a car wash to raise money for the starving kids in Darfur because cars pollute the environment and a car wash would send the wrong message.

Purity trolls disagree with Neil Sedaka – they think breaking up is easy. If they are in control they will kick you out. If you are in control they will leave, but then go around talking shit about you behind your back.

The thing they fear most is a free and open debate. They want opposing ideas suppressed and silenced. Despite their apparent belief in their own moral and intellectual superiority, they act as if exposure to opposing ideas will taint their pure essence.

That essence is, of course, made of 100% pure, unadulterated bullshit.



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11 Responses to Purity Trolls and Other Scourges

  1. Honk, honk.

    These are the same asswipes who still hate the Clinton’s.

    I think if they ever got hold of a gun, something they would never do of course, they would shoot their right foot because it’s a righty.

    • myiq2xu says:

      If you let labels do your thinking for you it saves lots of time.

    • elliesmom says:

      Anyone who has ever trained a puppy knows that you don’t get good behavior by comparing your dog’s behavior to the dog next door and deciding that while your puppy misbehaves, the neighbor’s dog is worse so you can live with your dog like she is. You don’t get good behavior by ignoring bad behavior, and you certainly don’t get good behavior by rewarding bad behavior with treats. You get yourself a nice big doggie crate, and when the dog misbehaves, you give her a “time out”. No need to hit her or yell at her. You just let her know that she is not welcome to run around and play until she gets what it is that you want her to do. It usually takes more than once for the puppy to understand, but she will come around and be a wonderful pet if you do this because “There Are No Bad Dogs” – just bad owners. Ellie is a very good girl so I know this works. Who cares about the other party? If the Democratic Party is our party, then it needs to be crated.

      • Mary says:

        Amen!

      • Cate says:

        Great advice, Elliesmom….not only re the Democrat Party, but my two Standard Poodles who go nuts when the doorbell rings. They are 7 and 9 though…is it too late?

        • elliesmom says:

          It’s never too late. Ellie is part poodle, and that’s the the smart part. She’s a year and a half old, and when the doorbell rings, she knows she can’t handle it so she goes into her crate w/o prompting, calms herself down with a stuffed toy, and then comes out and greets our guests after they’ve settled in. I swear if she can learn to do that, the congresscritters should be able to learn to keep their hands in their own pockets and not just when they’re taking photos of themselves.

  2. foxyladi14 says:

    if only they were as smart as Ellie. (sigh) 😦

    • yttik says:

      I like it. Let’s crate congress! Y’all need a time out.

      Geesh, my dog actually pees on furniture legs sometimes and his approval rating is still higher than the 5% congress is pulling in.

    • Pips says:

      You know foxy, I seriously, unsnarking, wish I were. 🙂

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