Hey Kids, it's TROLL TIME again!

I guess it's that time of the campaign when the losing side gets sooooooooo anxious that they send their little trolls out to squat and leave just-what-you-imagine-a-squatting-troll-to-leave behind.

These young'uns aren't what you call sophisticated thinkers or communicators but the GOP campaigns figure that telling them they're being really, really helpful by trolling Democrat or Progressive blogsites, it gives them something to do with adolescent energy, saves money on babysitters, and maybe accomplishes the all important feat of annoying someone besides the GOP campaign workers who have reached adulthood and are actually working in earnest to elect McCrory or McCain or any other GOPer.

I guess it's the equivalent of sending irritating volunteers on useless errands to prevent the alienation of volunteers whose work is actually valued.

I think we can expect to see a flurry of these poor little guys joining up from here until Nov. 4th.


Geez, I wish

they would just stay under their bridge.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

Don't worry

If any GOP trolls show up I'm sure they will have their posts deleted. Heck, posts get deleted here even when they criticize Obama or the Democrat party from the left.

Not so, young Paul

I've criticized the Democrats numerous times. I've criticized a particular Democratic candidate numerous times.

Your posts weren't deleted for criticizing Obama or the party.

Your posts were deleted because sometimes some folks get a little thin-skinned, but it wasn't because of your political position.

For the record, yes, the person you called a nazi is a thoughtful person (and no, I didn't see her suggesting anyone be executed).

From the left?

Gimme a break. You're not from the left, you're from the lunatic fringe anti-government Libertarian mindset. It's not left or right, it's fucking fantasyland.

SEE? See what ya started?

Where's the over-sized cane! Someone cut that spotlight!!!

Lock your doors, here comes the fringe anti-government RADICALS!

I love it when people throw the word "fringe" around as if it is an insult. Yea, being part of the mainstream political class is really something to be proud of nowadays. You have no idea what my political ideology is, and thus far I've been point out why anti-war, anti-corporation progressives voting for Democrats is as dumb as fiscal conservatives voting for Republicans.

Speaking of fringe, I have more in common, ideologically, with Jeremiah Wright and the Alaskan Independence Party than either of the two sock puppets running for president. It's sad that the media, and the viewers who allow the media to construct their reality for them, use the "fringe" label to write-off viewpoints instead of actually discussing their validity.

My second favorite insult is that I'm "anti-government". Is there something wrong with distrusting the state which has proven to be the most oppressive, destructive, and tyrannical institution in the history of civilization? How many millions of people died at the hands of the state in the last century alone? Excuse me for not loving a government which incinerated two entire cities full of civilians with nuclear weapons and has spent the last 60 years murdering and oppressing people all over the planet in the pursuit of a corporately-owned empire that would make Caesar's mouth water.

I'm anti-government because the vast majority of what the government does is terrible, and the few good things they do, they don't do very well. We have over two million people locked up in prison - the highest per capita prison rate in the world. If I were to lock you up in my basement for using a drug I didn't approve of, it would be called kidnapping, but when the government does it, it's JUSTICE! Can you say newspeak? Why is the government held to a different moral standard than its citizens? If you support the state, I'd love to see a justification for such blatant inequality.

Taxation is yet another form of oppression, although I don't expect any progressives to see that it is not only theft, but it also is a transfer of wealth from the middle class to the super rich. Who gets weapons contracts? Who constructs new prisons? Who sells vaccines and prescriptions to the government? Who gets contracts on textbooks and curriculum material for our "public" schools? Not you Mr. Small Business. That's ok, a lot of the money goes to buy the loyalty of seniors via Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security (never mind the fact that millions of dependent people are going to be sorely disappointed when these programs inevitably fail).

You might pipe up and defend government on the basis of the pittance of a social safety net it provides (half-heartedly in most cases)to those people who, due to the government's mercantilist approach to economics, are unable to provide for themselves or receive voluntary help from others. Realize that the welfare state was originally designed for the very purpose of buying support for the ruling regime within the lower classes who were being screwed over by government policies. It hasn't changed.

You can call me a lunatic, but I have the last laugh at you because you probably think you are fighting injustice and oppression while you are actually supporting their primary source: the state. You think it is a good idea to have a group of people with the exclusive right to arbitrate all conflicts in society, including those in which the group is a party, and the exclusive right to use violence to enforce its own authority. It's absurd. I thought progressives were against monopolies? Oh, that's only when they aren't in charge of them. Otherwise it's kind of nice to rule over others.

No kidding

I was trying to give the guy a little rope. Looks like he took it all. Utopian Lib?

Doubts about Dole?

Kinda looks that way

It's real easy to become jaded and disenchanted with the establishment, and wish for some totally different system that is immune to manipulation by those who would oppress. But that system has never existed and will never exist, so it's merely a fantasy construct for those who have given up.

What's really, really hard to do is to keep working for progress, even in the face of indifference and defeat, searching for the tiniest spark of humanity in the cold embers of complacency. On and on, every day. It's both hard and frustrating, but there's a clarity there that can't be found anywhere else.


Who believes in Utopia: the person who believes that government (violence) is the source of most problems, or the person who thinks that government (violence) can solve everything?

I'm not some jaded person; I am someone who believes in non-violence and I don't make exceptions for the sacrosanct state.

Name some problems that institutionalized violence (the state) can't solve, and tell me why the state can't solve them.

Look, I'm with you part of the way

on our country's bloody, empire-building history, and I am concerned about the erosion of our civil liberties embodied in the behavior of our government institutions. But I've been around the world, and I've spent time in areas where central government power was not in evidence, and I can tell you that a non-"violent" vacuum won't exist for long, no matter how enlightened the population is.

I spent some time in Somalia before the civil war destroyed the government there. It was a dictatorship, and it was not an especially "pleasant" environment, but it was functional and citizens had a reasonable expectation of personal safety and liberty. All that's gone now. People are starving, children are forced into militias when they can barely hold up a gun, pirates patrol an ever-widening expanse of coastal waters, etc.

The thing is, that's not just a geographical or ethnic issue. Feudalism can and will take the place of a strong central government, anywhere in the world that vacuum presents itself. Even here.

Umm, Trollfella,

Stop whining about taxes. Newsflash, there's no such thing as a free lunch. Revenue must come from somewhere. GOPers and Libertarians never get it. Taxes build roads and keep up the nation's infrastructure. So pay up and stop whining for a handout. Or maybe that bridge will come crashing down on your thick skull.

Just a thought...

Proud Educated Elitist With a Poison Pen

Proud Educated Elitist With a Poison Pen

It's the roads that get them.

You can stop an anti-taxer anytime with, "OK - that's fine, but...how are you going to build your road? Do you have a bulldozer?"

There is no good anti-tax answer for that. We have to have taxes to build roads, fight crime, provide for the common defense, build schools, etc. We can't leave that stuff up to the invisible hand of the free market because too many important things would slip through its fingers.

Speaking of fringe, I have more in common, ideologically, with Jeremiah Wright and the Alaskan Independence Party than either of the two sock puppets running for president.

Well, I've got to say, I'm not surprised. If you are a secessionist, perhaps you should go ahead and buy yourself an island somewhere, set up your government, and have at it. Perhaps if you're lucky you can have Todd Palin and Jeremiah Wright join you and you could form some sort of coalition where no one pays taxes, but everyone's needs are magically taken care of.

Let me know how that works out for ya.

Where trolls live

According to the fable of the Billy Goats Gruff, they live under bridges, but I'm pretty sure they lurk in all kinds of dark places.

I guess it's testimony to successful marketing that I think less often of a Sendak illustration and more often of those plastic critters with wild, fluffy, brightly colored hair, naked but with no butt cracks (an early model, I think) that my sister and I used to play with. We were fascinated by the absence of a butt crack and used to come up with explanations we thought might explain it. Later, models came out WITH butt cracks and we were thrown into confusion.

Good point Betsy

but trolls live under bridges,

The Psychology of Trolls

Once upon a time, there existed creatures called Trolls, or so the legends and folktales say. According to my reference works on these subjects, Trolls of Scandinavian folklore are usually huge ogres with great strength and little wit. The most famous tales of them have them lurking under bridges to demand payment of those who would cross, killing those who would make the attempt without paying the toll. Later, so the texts say, the stories told that they shrank to a smaller, dwarfish folk who inhabited caves. Eventually, they apparently left our world altogether, and were never seen or heard from again.[...]But those reports are wrong, for Trolls do indeed exist, even today. They are alive and well and wreaking new havoc on the Internet.

Do you wish to enter a chatroom or participate on a message board? Beware the Trolls! They will appear when you least expect it, and demand a different kind of payment from you. They will assail you with insults, obscenities, and anything offensive they can think of to get you give them what they really want: attention. They will keep up these attacks to watch you cry out in protest and pain, and the more you do so, the more they will keep it up. That's what they really want, after all: a reaction, any reaction, for that is the coin by which they measure their success. The more they receive, the more they will continue the behavior that is giving them what they want. That it upsets others is of no concern to them -- or, rather, it is of primary concern for them, for upsetting people is their business.

Like the Trolls of old, they seem to have great strength, given the kinds of trouble they can cause; but ultimately, also like the Trolls of old, they have little wit. They all use the same tactics, and they all resort to the same ways of provoking people. First insult members of the chatroom or board by calling them names, ridiculing their comments and questioning their intelligence. Then start insulting the subject for which the board or chatroom was created. If that doesn't get enough reaction, start upping the ante by bringing in completely unrelated subjects. Tell the other participants that they (or the subject under discussion) are prejudiced racially, sexually, ethnically, religiously -- take your pick, they'll eventually hit 'em all, and then go for the jugular: doing all this while throwing in obscene language and casting other foul aspersions on anyone who happens to be within range

Because if you look closely at what these Internet Trolls say, you will eventually see the truth: They may look like big nasty ogres, but theyre really just sorry little people hiding in their dark caves, coming out to make mischief before running back into hiding where they can watch the trouble they made and laugh all alone in the dark. They're emotional terrorists.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions