Saturday, November 22, 2008

Don't Be A Dick

I was thinking about this on one forum I frequent. So many smart people, so much bickering. Why do they bicker? To show us all how clever they are, because they have low self-esteem because they live in a falling-apart society.

Our first impulse is to say:

Rule #1: Don't be a dick.

My problem with rules, however, is that they replace goals. Imagine this:

Goal: discuss the given subject matter in a way that makes it better.

This means: always aim toward being better than the last generation, which for discussion means knowing more, learning more, spreading good information.

By definition, bickering is excluded, because it's non-productive.

Sure beats having a rule where the bickerers will then say, "But I'm not bickering!" and attack using passive-aggressive means. "No, the other guy is the one bickering! I'm just telling the truth, for hope and change!"

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Subvert the dominant paradigm, don't be a solipsist.

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