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Today's lack of a blog post is brought to you by Gawker.com, Jezebel.com, and Huffingtonpost.com. I wrote a long and fascinating post this morning but realized it was too easy to take it out of context, and I didn't want to spend my entire week dealing with the Internet fallout.

So you won't ever see that post. But I have to say, it was some of my best work. That's what made it dangerous.

As a case in point, see what the Huffington Post had to say about my recent post on stock market manipulation. Their headline is "Dilbert Creator Scott Adams Is On To You, Massive Telepathic Stock Market Conspiracy." In this case the commenters shredded the asshole who wrote it because it was such a pathetic hit piece. I made some comments of my own just for fun. This time it worked out well for me, but normally this sort of thing goes the other way.

This is what censorship looks like in 2013. I actually had something useful to say today but I can't be bothered with the blowback. It's not that I mind a good dust-up, because I normally enjoy the attention. But I choose to put my energy someplace else at the moment for purely practical reasons. The effect is similar to censorship.

It probably isn't a good thing.










 
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Mar 12, 2013
It's a given that anyone who says anything remotely interesting is going to get smacked around.

Favorite motives include ginning up fake controversy and filling bandwidth without doing research (clip a favorite quote or soundbite; express outrage; break for lunch); shooting down everything that doesn't correspond precisely with your world view; and sometimes desperately twisting it into a form that DOES correspond with your world view (psychos with guns mean guns should be easier to get).

If everybody nods and says, "that's worth reasonable debate", you've probably said nothing whatsoever.
 
 
Mar 12, 2013
Oh boo hoo. So now it's "censorship" if somebody has the affrontery to criticize something you wrote? So free speech is only for cartoonists, or what?
 
 
Mar 12, 2013
I thought the Huffington Post piece was pretty tame. Yeah, he thought your blog post was stupid, and he mocked your idea -- but it's not like he said you were a terrible person. I cannot imagine anyone boycotting Dilbert products because someone on the internet thought your idea about the stock market was silly. You've been called much worse.
 
 
+4 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
Don't let them live rent free inside your skull.

If you just ignore them, you'll feel better.

Remind me, why do you think they are worth any of your time?
 
 
Mar 11, 2013
That's all fine and dandy, but I think you've conveniently forgotten your wonderful header/disclaimer that was a result of the whole Men's Rights debacle.
 
 
+4 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
At least it was fun to see that the HuffPost blogger, even after having an uninterrupted opportunity to make his point and the advantage of selective quotes, got mostly pilloried in the comments. Perhaps the reading public is better at critical thinking than I gave it credit for.
 
 
0 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
Pity that you couldn't include the desired context in your post.
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
As a general rule, if you decide not to post something for fear of what the "liberal media" will say, you are either a:

a) A conflicted liberal
b) A Fox News journalist
c) A conspiracy theorist

I have a feeling you're neither a) or b)...
 
 
Mar 11, 2013
Best

Blog

Post

Ever!

Thanks Scott for your insight and excellent writing on this subject.

Sorry that you have lost all of those monetized clicks by not driving viewers to your blog postings via creating controversy.

I so want to see you on TV news "yell at each other" commentary shows using a megaphone to over-shout whichever host is yelling, not stopping to breathe, and attacking you personally versus having an actual reasoned debate on a subject...
 
 
+6 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
Scott, it seems to me that in ages past when smart people had controversial things they wanted to say, they did so anonymously. If you like that idea you could probably find other smarties in the same boat as you, to occasionally post under your anonymous handle just to throw people off the track.

[I don't think that works anymore. My writing has a distinct fingerprint. I'd be outed in about a minute. And if humans didn't sniff me out, there is software that would. If I wrote something forgettable, it wouldn't matter that it was in my own name. And if I wrote something that became viral, and people cared about, I would be sniffed out in about ten minutes. -- Scott]
 
 
Mar 11, 2013
Do like the trolls do... Post it and forget it. Don't read the comments, and don't read or reply to uppity articles written by uppity pseudo-journalists who are all up into being up in your stuff.

I'm just here to say the word "up" has been widely undervalued and, as one of the more versatile words in the English language, should be put up far more often.

[I don't care about the negative opinions. I only care that they have an impact on business. In 2013 people say, "I didn't like that joke so I will not buy anything that guy is associated with." -- Scott]
 
 
+16 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
This isn't censorship. It's just your brain telling you, "it's not worth it." We've had this since the beginning of time.
 
 
+7 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
What't the matter McFly - chicken?
 
 
Mar 11, 2013
My favorite part is where they attribute the advice/prediction to Dilbert and not Scott.
 
 
Mar 11, 2013
That's what political correctness is all about. This is a perfect example. We on the right have known of this tactic for a long time, because it's used mainly (but not exclusively) against us.

It usually takes the form of an ad hominem attack. For those who are not familiar with the term, 'ad hominem' is Latin for "to the man." What it means is, don't argue the point; instead, belittle the man.

It often happens when someone takes a position or gives an opinion. Then, people who don't agree with that position do not attempt to refute it. What they do is attack the person giving the position statement, inferring that because he is such a bad person, anything he has to say, by inference, must be dismissed out of hand.

The goal of this kind of emotionally centered attack is to get people to censor themselves. Since they don't want to be attacked personally over and over again, they end up not giving their position at all. What happened to Scott is a perfect example of this.

If you looked at the Huffington Post article, you saw a statement that said Scott's position was dangerous lunacy that should be avoided at all cost. That is not the statement of someone trying to have a rational discussion of Scott's position.

If you read my response to Scott, it took the form of refutation of the idea, not an attack on the man. Although I did give him a jibe about his economic degree, but that was in jest.

The Huffington Post is a left-wing blog started by Arianna Huffington. She was a liberal Democrat, then became a conservative commentator in the mid-90's, but then once again became a liberal in the late 90's. She sold her blog, the Huffington Post, to AOL in 2011 for $315 million.

The Huff Post, as it's called, is infamous for making ad hominem attacks on those with whom it doesn't agree. Case in point is the reaction to Scott's article. It is helpful to know both the bias and the methods of blogs such as this.

Now, the really sad thing about this kind of attack is that it works. Another case in point: Scott's decision not to publish this post. That means the unfairness of attacks on him have won out; he has allowed himself to allow their intimidation to work, and to censor himself. They didn't have to do anything to counter his post, because it never saw the light of day.

Now, those of you who follow my responses to Scott know that he and I are quite often in disagreement about the ideas he puts forth. But I look forward to his posts every time he writes one, because they're entertaining and make one think about topics one otherwise would never have thought of. I'm sorry we won't be treated to his latest foray into the arenas of creativity and wit.

This is Scott's decision to make. I can't walk in his shoes and know what it's like to be him in this situation, so I will not attempt to influence him.

I will say, for the rest of those who read this blog: think about what it means when you allow yourself to be censored.
 
 
+30 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
Headline: Dilbert creator Scott Adams supports censorship!
 
 
+15 Rank Up Rank Down
Mar 11, 2013
So can we expect to see this blog post someday when you're in a 'dealing with a bunch of internet idiots' mood?
 
 
Mar 11, 2013
Dont tell me you're just now feeling censored. As a fellow white male there are all sorts of things I know I cant say and I know you cant say either.
 
 
Mar 11, 2013
You should put the post on Amazon as a 99 cent ebook. Very few people will read it and it will be hard to link to so the usual vilification will not be as rewarding.

However, those true fans can pony up a dollar and the idea won't be lost.

[I probably need a moat that can't be crossed for 99 cents plus cut and paste. -- Scott]
 
 
 
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