Still Pissed Off About the Hawley-Smoot Tariff

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Thomas Sowell to the Rescue

Thomas Sowell has a great piece that, unlike Kennedy's bloviating ramblings, you should actually read. It's about the art of disagreement.

"My assistant sorts the incoming mail into various categories, such as 'critical mail,' 'fan mail,' etc. But the so-called critical mail is seldom critical. It may be bombastic or vituperative or full of pop psychology, but it seldom presents a critical argument based on facts or logic."

I can't possibly add anything to Sowell's well-reasoned column, so instead I'll just say a few things about the ramifications of it. I know many liberals who can disagree without being disagreeable. Occasional contributor Average Joe (follow the link in my sidebar to his blog, Digressions from the Omniverse) assuredly disagrees with me on a lot of what I say, but he gets a link because he isn't disagreeable about it. He doesn't call me an idiot, racist, bloodthirsty war-monger (at least, not that I know of), he tells me why he disagrees. Then I respond. That kind of back and forth can create the most wonderful of intellectual excercises, and it is the very best of what blogging has to offer.

I also think there's a place where reason isn't the governing rule. Consider this post in which Ace makes fun of Michael Moore's weight. And you'll notice that his very first commenter states, "Your anti-Mooreism has has now reached ridiculous status. What does his weight have to do with his policitial leanings?"

Speaking of ridiculous status...

Look, I think everyone can agree that a man's weight has nothing to do with the persusiveness of his arguments. But (jeez, I hate having to point this out) Ace was making a joke. As in, hah hah, let's all laugh at Michael Moore, who is a worthy object of our ridicule anyway.