An excerpt from a recent comment to Workbench:

Ha! I beg you to censor this! It will be the premier coup in my lodge, Rogers -- proving every single word I've written ...

I granted his wish and deleted the comment.

Fear of being called a censor used to work on me, because I believed that a commitment to free expression on the Internet meant giving wide latitude to readers who took the time to comment, even when they were hostile, abusive or obscene -- especially when I was the target of their wrath.

I have all the power on my servers, so it seemed unfair to use any of that editorial discretion to silence a critic. Part of this belief was motivated by seeing how many times web hosts will drop a controversial site when its content generates hate mail. The Bonsai Kitten spoof couldn't find a host willing to publish it amid a barrage of complaints by enraged cat fanciers.

I also wanted to win an argument I had with Jerry Pournelle and his cronies a million years ago on GEnie. He was the censorious host; I was the crank who believed the deletion of my post was the "coup in my lodge." How dare a writer, who draws his living from speech for which our ancestors fought and died, suppress the speech of others! As I recall, I was so insufferable in the ensuing discussion I'd like to travel back in time and flame myself.

After a decade of publishing on the web, I finally reached my screw-that moment regarding censorship a few months ago. Someone else can carry the First Amendment flag. The speech here isn't free to me -- it's $225 a month plus labor. Telling someone you have a right to free speech on their site is like walking into their house and demanding a ham sandwich.

The most I now offer is an attempt to moderate fairly, save deleted comments briefly in case you want them back, and provide advice on setting up your own site to get out from under the thumb of the man.

Anyone who doesn't like these rules is free to post somewhere else.

-- Rogers Cadenhead

Comments

Can I have a ham sandwich if I ask for it politely?


 

Anyone who's ever been an editor, or subject to the heartless excisions of such a mean curmudgeon, would understand.


 

All the freedom that's fit to print.

You aren't obliged to pander to abuse Rogers. Our ancestors didn't put their lives on the line for that. If you want to be a citizen, you're expected to act like an adult when you unzip and pull your rights - not wave them about like a club to bludgeon little cute kittens.

Those who object can go *&$% themselves with a Mobius Strip.

Regards,
etc.


 

Sounds like a challenge: I can get banned in just three comments.


 

Well, there's always more where those came from.


 

I used to administrate a gaming forum with a few thousand members. My stance was exactly that "this is owned property, and all your talk of first amendment does is make you look whiney." On some occasions, I mentioned the Bill of No Rights.

That said, I *was* exceptionally slow to anger, and almost always made it a point not to delete invisibly (ie. I'd remove the content of a post and leave an explanation of why I did so, but would not delete it). As a result, I always had the support of everyone but the whiner in question, even eventually a bunch of funs who'd cheer whenever I finally decided to take action.

I left that position a few years ago, and I'm still a bit of a local legend. (URI available on request if you want to verify the story.)

Naturally, the circumstances on a weblog are different, so while I'd still make a point not to delete silently, I don't think I'd be as patient. You are right: anyone who complains is welcome to set up their own pad on the web and use it as a platform, and good luck with that.


 

"Anyone who doesn't like these rules is free to post somewhere else."

Can anyone who *does* like these rules also feel free to post somewhere else? Gee, I sure hope so . . . cause if not, some of us will sure feel unfree!!


 

Well, there's always more where those came from.

Pick one name and stick to it. Holding discussions with yourself is obnoxious.


 

You are right: anyone who complains is welcome to set up their own pad on the web and use it as a platform, and good luck with that.

I'll actively help anyone who wants their own online fiefdom. A group of Retort users united in their hatred of my moderation have started a community blog at PoliticalWarZone that's not off to a bad start (though the NSFW links might scare some folks off).


 

Amen, brutha....amen.


 

Rogers maunders, "Fear of being called a censor used to work on me. . ."

I used the term "censor" as a verb, Rogers, but evidently you were impelled to spin this into an issue not under discussion.

". . . because I believed that a commitment to free expression on the Internet meant giving wide latitude to readers who took the time to comment, even when they were hostile, abusive or obscene -- especially when I was the target of their wrath."

It was your threat to censor my comment(s) that was the point I discussed, Rogers, and that it would provide me with the satisfaction for your having done so, if you did. It is specially because you feel yourself a "target" for the comment(s) that you are threatening to censor the (place your own litany of pejorative adjectives, here) comment.

"I have all the power on my servers, so it seemed unfair to use any of that editorial discretion to silence a critic."

I have already indicated, and which you have read, that I support your right to spread your editorial red ink around, whenever you please . . . this is NOT a public venue, per se. However, when you take that effort to do so, and for the reason(s) you have indicated, then I gain even more satisfaction from the runaway intellectualism it takes to censor, instead of rebut, debate, or criticise, directly.

In this instance, you objected to my characterisation of Leftists, Democrats and their ilk as being traitorous for criticising the ME war, hourly, weekly, monthly and for the last 4+ YEARS! It is an outright subversion for the Left to be attempting to gain political advantage by muckraking the war and our servicemen, constantly; without letup. . . and you know it and that's why you censored my comments.

"I also wanted to win an argument I had with Jerry Pournelle. . ."

See? This is really all about you, right Rogers? You don't want some curmudgeon coming on to your site and characterising your "side" as being traitors and subversive war profiteers -- so you attempt to stop it by attacking the messenger . . .

. . . and look!?! Here is another thread full of the obvious escape from responsibility for your anti-patriotic party's words and actions (along with whatever individuals would like to try the "traitor" shoe on their yellow-dog-democrat foot.

"Anyone who doesn't like these rules is free to post somewhere else."

Send me an email telling me not to post on your site, Rogers, and I will honor your request . . .

However, the daily calumny being issued by the Democrats and their stooges is antipatriotic, subversive and traitorous to the Nth degree. And, you are a main contributor with your commentary, here and on the Drudge "Retort" (like you actually do any of that!!!)

. . . live with it . . .


 

TPS says, "You aren't obliged to pander to abuse Rogers."

Nor is a correspondent obligated to pander to threats of censorship . . .

Neither you, nor Rogers, or anyone else on the Left can effectively justify the year-in-and-year-out calumny which has taken place in the US, in order to gain votes; political power! This isn't about legitimate objections to the war, but instead is a concerted effort to revile and defame any and all aspects of this engagement against ME terrorism.

No one here can deny that Republicans raised specific objections to going to Bosnia to end putative genocide taking place there. Also, no one here can deny that once our troops were in the field, the Republicans conducted themselves patriotically and supported the war and our troops. . .

. . . the observation between now and then is obvious!

Rogers attempted to argue that, given similar circumstances, Republicans would try to gain political advantage in the same way . . . but that is just not so and since Bosnia was "similar circumstances."

It all boils down to the fact that the Left are starting to realize that they are marginalizing themselves, and since it is IN THE NEWS that they are doing so by acting out anti-patriotically . . .

Rogers, and the other running (retreating) yellow dog democrats, don't like it and want to attack it.

. . . and that is just what happened, despite the name-dropping monologue about how "fair" Rogers would like to be . . .

You, on the other hand, are obviously "pandering" with your backslapping, glad-handing efforts . . .


 

I can't follow that.


 

Uncle Mikey scratches head, "I can't follow that."

And. . . I can't quite grasp what it is that you can't follow, since you just issue a pinche one-liner, sans punctuation, and which is obviously intended pejoratively. Are you confused over the comparison between Republican and Democrat actions provided? Haven't heard the news mentioning the apparent support being given to Hezbollah by Left/Democrat criticism(s) of Israel? Didn't notice (or weren't aware of) the fact that Republicans ceased complaining about the Bosnian adventure as soon as our troops were engaged? Not sure about the personal remarks not intented for you? What?

That's the trouble with most "political" correspondents, they aren't interested in debate or discussion of the POINTS, only in their invisible egos . . .

And . . . it is becoming more and more obvious that the Left/Democrats are acting out subversively in their calumny over Iraq; politicising it constantly, daily . . .that aids and abets the enemy we are fighting, right now! That represents: treason . . . and that's why all the misdirection and efforts to silence what I say by removing it.


 

Hey Nutley? We're sort of on the same side here, but if it surprises you that your level of nuttiness is out of sync with the other nuttinesses around here, I'm not sure what to tell you. Other than chill, baby. You're a caps lock button away from being indistinguishable from a Daily Kos diarist. I agree with the substance of much of what you say, but I can't endorse the pissy tone. Sorry.

I get that Rogers is a liberal. Really I do. He threatened me with a metaphorical bayonet once, and he probably would have tried to make my spilled-out organs have gay marriages. He did promise to feel bad about it, which was very thoughtful.

And I used two pieces of punctuation, how many do you need? How's this:

"I! c'an't; . . . (follow), that?"

P.S. love the use of pinche. Not enough of that going around.


 

Back in the days when I got my first Che Guevara tattoo, and carried Mao's Little Red Book in my back pocket (left, of course), I read news of the Cultural Revolution translated from Pinyin transcriptions into English by pseudo-intellectuals at the University of Florida. Much nuance was lost, I'm sure.

Tadowe's rantings remind me of those boring speeches, especially the "running dogs" epithets, as in "...the running dogs of the American imperialist lackeys of capitalism."

Tadowe is in desperate need of a heart transplant, and I feel nothing but the compassion of the Laughing Buddha for him.

Thomas, I'm celebrating my birthday in Buenos Aires this year, and you're invited (all things are possible). I'm having a vegan barbecue. If you insist on beef, I'll arrange the delivery of some very fine organic grass-fed (the only kind) tenderloin for your delectation. You have my number.

Peace


 

Now I get it. You're a comma fanatic.

My "emphasis" is no different, in any substantial way, from that employed by the Left in manipulating their "headlines" to the most, utmost pejorative inference possible!

So I win, then?


 

What could be more obnoxious than Tadowe's screeds? He told us that he posts for others to find the errors in the opinions he expresses. Score one?

In my book, Tadowe~Uncle Mikey.


 

Vince can't stay away, "Tadowe's rantings remind me of those boring speeches, especially the "running dogs" epithets, as in '...the running dogs of the American imperialist lackeys of capitalism.'"

Duh! Why do you think I use the phrase!?!

From the Left/Democrats we get rants like: nazi, fascist, warmonger, neocon, etc., but if someone has the temerity to come onto a Leftwing blog and demonstrate the same rhetoric, in return . . .?

. . . the puling hypocrites whine for ages . . . "You're so mean spirited! Take a Pill!"

For hypocrites are so very obvious!

As for the other comments about your ideology? You are still projecting, Vince, and you can't seem but to reveal your own fears in almost everything you post, insultingly. . .


 

Tadowe, now you're sputtering.

I'm not fearful to invite you to my birthday party, although I doubt you could drag your corpus away from your computer long enough to make it to the airport, much less Buenos Aires.

Thomas, I suggest you smoke some Reed canary grass. It's loaded with DMT, and if you ingest it that way you won't need a monoamine oxidase inhibitor to feel the effects. I believe you can find it growing wild in Oregon.

I think it would do your spirit some real good.

I love you, "Duh" man.


 

Vince, your kindness is humbling. But if you're not appalled, you're not paying attention. Wait, I meant if you're not frothing, you're not serious about America. Shit. Let me try this again. If you're not having a cerebral hemorrhage from screaming at your monitor like a psycho, you're a hypocrite.

Tadowe, there's nothing more distasteful than an ideological loyalty oath, which is one of the reasons I'm not a fan of the Daily Kos and never will be until they stop kicking liberals out of their tent for not being liberal enough. It's less convincing, not more, that you use the same tactics as those with whom you disagree.


 

Wait a minute, Uncle Mikey. You mean Tadowe isn't a hoax? I thought you were Tadowe. You don't mean this is a real person, do you? Tell me it ain't so.

My whole vision of the universe will collapse if this straw man is proven to be a real corpus. My God, it can't be. Please, no.

All this time I thought I was participating in a satirical exercise for fun. It didn't seem possible that the effusions of such an obviously disordered mind were meant to be taken seriously.

You're making me paranoid. I'm beginning to think this is a conspiracy between you and Rogers to confuse the public. Such a swellhead could not exist in my reality. I've always seen Tadowe as "a self-made man who worships his creator", but he could only be intelligible to me as a spoof of the archetypal misanthrope who gets his rocks off on his keyboard.

It's going to take a bottle of mescal to kill this nightmare, and I'll eat the worm this time.


 

Mikey (who's on my "side") admires Vince, the erstwhile Che fan, "Vince, your kindness is humbling. But if you're not appalled, you're not paying attention. Wait, I meant if you're not frothing, you're not serious about America. . ." and etc.

You "interpret" my commentary pejoratively, but without any attempt to directly rebut any "hysteria," but rather attacked the messenger in the derogatory way you do, above . . .

. . . see? You are a bald faced liar, that you are on my "side."

"Tadowe, there's nothing more distasteful than an ideological loyalty oath, which is one of the reasons I'm not a fan of the Daily Kos and never will be until they stop kicking liberals out of their tent for not being liberal enough."

Now, you attempt to link me to the Kos? You are a liberal stalking horse, aren't you? Or, you are personally obsessed with me . . . just as is Rogers and all the other ideological leftists on this site. You have a grudge from previous discussions, and allow your emotions to control your reason.

"It's less convincing, not more, that you use the same tactics as those with whom you disagree."

Look, Mikey, I comment in the way I do, and you comment in the way you do. The rhetoric I use is MOCKERY of the Left and their communist "dialectics." I've seen it from them since they started the war in Vietnam and then morphed it into a Republican "fascist" effort, in defending an ally!

I won't stop until these socialist subversives either stop or can't go on!!!

Save your self-interested breath! You are just providing a "stage" for my commentary!!!

(As has Rogers, Vince or anyone else who attacks the messenger . . .)

Otherwise come on back with more efforts to make me the subject of your political commentary.


 

You are a liberal stalking horse, aren't you?

Mikey's a buddy of mine from college who lives in the only outpost of Texas liberalism without getting any of it on him. I emphathize, since North Florida is as conservative as Austin is liberal. One of these days the Democrats here will be a federally protected species.


 

If I knew how to rebut hysteria, I'd be a rich man and wouldn't hang around this shack. Or maybe I'd hang around more, but that's not the point. All I'm trying to say is that getting your rocks off on your keyboard is a lot more problematic than most people realize. Seriously, someone needs to invent a tiny shop-vac.

Anyway, Tadowe, I think one can attack your message on a stylistic basis and not be making a personal attack on you, but if you need to feel attacked, please be my guest. I would never deprive you of that. So Vietnam, was that where you had your sense of humor shot off?

Man am I going to feel bad if you had something else shot off there. If only I had the decency to not post it in the first place . . .


 

Mike comments,"If I knew how to rebut hysteria, I'd be a rich man . . . Tadowe, I think one can attack your message on a stylistic basis and not be making a personal attack on you, but if you need to feel attacked, please be my guest. I would never deprive you of that. So Vietnam, was that where you had your sense of humor shot off?"

I went to Vietnam because president Kennedy and Johnson, and the Democrat Congress, felt it was important to fight communist aggression into nations that had been created by the UN.

Tell me, what argument you have against that effort by a conservative president, and followed up by a "liberal" Democrat president and Congress?

If you don't have any arguments that aren't pro communist aggression/fascism . . . please presen them, now. . .

Otherwise, you are a wise ass punk, devoid of any intellectual capacity, whatsoever. . . .

I'm waitin, Rogers? . . . or anyone. . .?

Man am I going to feel bad if you had something else shot off there. If only I had the decency to not post it in the first place


 

BTW, Rogers, I lived in Forney, and Richardson, while you matriculated, and worked in Plano for J.C.'s.

I took care of my father while he died with lung cancer....

War, life and death, 65 years of life.... and you're "friends" advise a "pill."

Pai chak wao . . .


 

Got a ban from the pirate site (Drudge Retort)!

Hmmm, right after you started removing my posts, here . . .

Odd, but probably just a coincidence, eh?

I may have actually hit some sore spot though, huh? Reasoned why the Left/Democrats are the party of treason? Care to say what the sticking-spot was . . . ?


 

Also, I'm not listed as one of those who have received their "punishment" for upsetting your sensibilities, there on the Drudge.

Is that to save your "political" face . . . or negligence?


 

I guess it must involve "face" then, right Rogers?

You don't list my name as one of those banned on the Drudge Retort. Really, have you got that much feedback concerning my posts . . . that you would be embarrassed, politically, if it were known that you banned my comments; however much I needed some "liberal" punishment/pill?

Rather flattering, I must say. . .

Thanks, and now I can brag about being "banned" from both a reactionary and radical site -- oh, oh and being selectively edited on this "blog."

You've made my day. . . hell . . . my quarter!


 

You can't embarrass a father of three. He's the one who does the embarrassing, thank you very much.

But do continue, this is fascinating.


 

If I knew it made people so happy to ban them, I would have done it sooner.


 

Rogers says, "If I knew it made people so happy to ban them, I would have done it sooner."

I guess you didn't read where I had bragged about being banned from Sierra Times. It has been posted to Drudge on about 3 seperate times; links and all. But, I notice that you censor only haphazardly over there, so I'm sure you missed it.

How about that Briwo, Hans and Corky, among others, reaction to my being reinstated there at the Drudge Retort, eh? How could I ever ask for better examples of the inability to do anything more than make constant personal attacks without one iota of reasoning to justify their goosestepping efforts to make me their favorite "Juden?"

That must worry you just a bit . . . doesn't it? I mean, I might be one surly old curmudgeon discrediting myself and my party (although I'm Libertarian and not Republican) but these are your dupes/stooges, acting out like neobrownshirts . . .

Say, why don't you moderate and remove such off-point, neonazi posts and get your own party back into making real political sense? That way, when invective is used in addressing the point, it will be like real life, eh? Not some, artificial, self-destructive tactic reminiscent of stiff armed salutes and echoes of jackboots marching in unison . . .


 

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