The Godwin Approach To Debating / Carnival Barking Twaddle
Over the course of my time on TMF I have read many postings and articles composed by fellow Fools. There have been some good, and even excellent debates covering a wide variety of subjects. I have seen good approaches and poor ones executed in the course of these debates. In my experience the least effective of those in trying to make a point, for good or bad is to use what I call The Godwin Approach.
For those not in the know read here for some background on Godwin's Law. The Godwin Approach To Debating is basic: 1) The ability to compare any person, place, thing or idea to a person, place thing or idea with roots in Nazi Germany. Depending on the topic and the mind behind behind the arguement this approach has the same effect as using a pool noodle to fend off an angry dog: It can be done if you know what the heck you're doing. 2) The adoption of Nazi Propagana Minister Joseph Goebbels' technique of winning a debate: "...tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it." You have to know your audience in order to be effective with this approach.
In recent weeks I have seen number two used without restraint by one particular Fool. He used to have substantive content to his contributions. But over the course of a year and a half the meat of his arguements have given way to fat. He thinks that he can replace quality with quantity and be given a pass for his lack of effort. He thinks that if he keeps repeating the lies, half truths and outlandish declarations that eventually we will come to believe it. He has reduced himself to being little more than a carnival barker for his freakshow of commentary, his twaddle. Shame on him for taking you for a fool. And shame on those of you that let him go unchecked.
For the purposes of this posting I have elected to withhold the name of the attention hungry permabear, the perveyor of half truths and falsehoods. It will not surprise me to see him out himself in the comment section below so you had better "Hurry! Hurry! Hurry! Step right up!"