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Brendan said on May 23rd, 2012 at 7:47 pm

I consider you a humorist first, a dispenser of insights second. As a result, when you choose to be both funny and insightful I’m willing to grant you some leeway, even if you are ridiculing the people you disagree with.

At the same time I think Mr. Harbin is right that you are primarily preaching to the choir. Your wit might sway a few but for the most part your article speaks to people who already agree with your position. That may just be the way it is. The value of scorn in this case is simply motivating people who agree silently to be less silent by voicing what they are all thinking. In my experience, it rarely wins over new believers.

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I am baffled both that Harbin apparently doesn’t know what fisking is, and that he considers it an illegitimate tool for commenting on somebodies work.

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I agree viz a viz value in expression of anger and disgust. It’s a peculiarly internet chic thing to dismiss anything that shows emotional investment.

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Flypaper said on May 24th, 2012 at 9:51 am

Note to self: post more “the whole thing should be in the public domain so we can all publish our own equally-privileged fanfictions in peace”-type comments in Before Watchmen threads. Must shift Overton window.

On topic, I think Brendan’s nailing it here. There’s value in unadulterated scorn as a tool of humour, but it rarely overlaps with it’s use as a tool of persuasive rhetoric.

…Personally, I’m fine with going for ‘funny scorn’ in this instance. As you pointed out, there’s intelligent rebuttals out there if people want to read those instead. Plus he’s in a higher Internet weight class (as measured in audience and online goon/white knight access), so it’s not like you can be accused of bullying him (which is the point at which bile becomes unacceptable).

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dangermouse said on May 24th, 2012 at 2:34 pm

People come up with lots of stupid reasons to tell themselves that assholes never convince anyone of anything, because people hate admitting to themselves when assholes convince them of something, because they’re assholes. But no, actually assholes are totally convincing, because they’re right and willing to strongly state that they’re right in a way that people who disagree with them can’t avoid or ignore, which is what makes them assholes and makes people hate them. But they’re still right, they still convince plenty of people plenty of times where people wouldn’t have otherwise been convinced, and every complaint about ~sinking to their level~ or ~preaching to the choir~ is denialism from someone who thinks their sense of argumentative aesthetics is more important than the actual issue.

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You know what? Despite Kurtz’s tone, I think he’s right. Most of the more important aspects of most of the characters are actually not from Kirby. He deserves some credit but not the amount people are arguing for.

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Charlotte said on May 24th, 2012 at 7:46 pm

Dude, Dustin Harbin now knows who you are. *fangush*

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Sgaile-beairt said on May 24th, 2012 at 7:48 pm

Oh, scorn can be a powerful goad to the non choir, speaking from the first person xp….”Nuh-uh! Are not! UR the stoopid one! You just wait, I’ll prove it!oh, uh, wait a sec, i’ll get right back to you…”

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Sgaile-beairt said on May 24th, 2012 at 7:49 pm

(or what Dangermouse said)

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Friscovi@Hotmail.com said on May 24th, 2012 at 9:17 pm

Two things: unless I’m compleatly missing the point of Harbin’s post, the gist of what he’s saying is that MGK’s use of humor lowers the general level of societies’ discourse and we all should feel bad about. I respond by pointing to the Daily Show and it’s Peabody award and ask if he feels the same way about Jon Stewart? Because really say that your not allowed to make fun in adult conversations is pretty immature IMHO.
Two: Can you do anything about the Kurtz sock puppets? Really we all what he’s doing but can’t we flag them or something.

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FeepingCreature said on May 25th, 2012 at 9:37 am

“Dustin Harbin wrote a very good post about yesterday’s Scott Kurtz dubstep[...]”

I think I spend too much time on the Internet.

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DensityDuck said on May 25th, 2012 at 4:56 pm

Also “what dangermouse said”. People don’t get upset about someone who is an asshole and wrong.

The whole “you shouldn’t be an asshole” is more of the same “I hate fighting, so I hate people who fight, even when they’re good people fighting for the right reason” that motivated Kurtz’s post in the first place.

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It’s a rhetorical tone argument, and as I said elsewhere, Scott Kurtz has been Scott Kurtz for so long that any attempt to engage in polite discourse with him will fall flat. Kurtz simply does not do respectful discourse. (I just came from a webcomic’s blog where Kurtz first told her “you have insulted me and we are no longer friends!” but then changed to “you have hurt my feelings and I am sad” moments later. That’s the best the guy can do.)

So what’s so wrong with a little insulting in this situation? You’re responding to a public post, on your own blog, in your own way, in a manner where others can comment, and without bullying or suggestions of boycotts or stern letter-writing campaigns.

Just because someone needed a fainting couch after reading your post doesn’t mean you were being particularly harsh.

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DensityDuck said on May 30th, 2012 at 4:33 pm

Incidentally, it’s hard to accept Kurtz getting all high-horse about comics fans when he’s just presented us with a story where a troll clubs a Gelatinous Cube to death with its dick.

I mean, not that this isn’t hilarious, but it kind of gives the lie to any claim of moral authority through aesthetic superiority.

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Reggie Rock said on September 1st, 2013 at 2:51 am

“is not enough to convince some people; there are those who will be swayed by the expression of how horrible you found it,”

Those people are human garbage and not worth anyone’s time.

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