Fuck The Meta

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

What it comes down to is this: I’m sick of Daily Kos meta. I’m an issues guy, and I know that most of you are issues people, but the meta bullshit is driving us away from what most interests us. It’s driving us away from what we do best.

I’ve been involved in enough flame wars, and I’m tired of them. Life is short and fragile. I have better things to do. People jump into my diaries and flame me, and more and more I don’t even bother reacting. They’re wastes of my time. They lie about me, they smear me, they hijack my threads with their petty personal agendas, and they’re such tiny little people that I couldn’t see them even if I used a microscope. If they could argue the substance, they would. Since they can’t, they make it personal. More and more, I don’t care.

I do care that I have discovered I can engage in meaningful dialogue with some people I hadn’t expected to. I do care that while I may have intense arguments with some people on some issues, I can discover surprising layers of agreement on other issues. Even when they strongly and pointedly disagree with me on the issues, if they argue the issues, I know they are substantive people. And I welcome their engaging me on the issues. That’s what interests me.

I write what I write at Daily Kos because I want to teach and learn and try to effect some movement on the issues. Those that care more about personalities than issues continually try to make it difficult. But they win only when I descend to their level. More and more, I try not to. And more and more, as I stated, I find that some are capable of genuine and genuinely respectful discourse. But what most frustrates me about some of you here who I consider ideological allies is that by getting dragged so much into the meta, by getting so entangled in it that you sometimes lose your own perspectives just as I once did and still occasionally do, you end up not being available to do what you do best, and what is needed most: engaging on the issues. Write about the issues. Prove yourselves right on the issues. Help the rest of us who are trying to fight for the issues.

Fuck the meta. The very small people win when you get caught up in the meta. They win whenever you waste time on the meta and on their bullshit. Do what you do best and you will be surprised to discover that some you hadn’t expected to be are a lot closer to your viewpoints than you realize. Figure out who those are, and engage with them. Allow yourselves to be surprised. Leave the rest alone. Let them continually prove what they are about. It’s their problems, not yours. It’s their time, not yours. You don’t need to call them out on it, because they prove what they are simply by being what they are. If you rise above, you will draw the contrast by so doing. But what really matters is that your time is better spent. We need you doing what you’re capable of doing. Fuck the meta. Help us fight on the issues.  


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    • Turkana on April 12, 2010 at 19:39


    • ANKOSS on April 12, 2010 at 20:05

    It’s just that simple. I’ve been Kos-free for over six months, and it feels great. How is that more and better Democrats thing working out for them, I wonder?

    I just changed my voter registration to Green Party, and that’s where I will make my political contributions and spend my energy.  

    • TMC on April 12, 2010 at 20:05
  1. There comes a time when you have to take a stand.

    Even if that stand is down in the mud.

    The trick is in not staying there when the fight is over.

  2. Fight on the issues.  

  3. The name calling is easy to ignore if one has the willpower. What is more difficult is the subtle attack: the smear the messenger, the red herring, the straw man, etc.

    • Edger on April 12, 2010 at 20:14
  4. to argue with people not based in reality, generationally misinformed on top of being deliberately manipulated on a daily basis via electronic media designed with the Strategic Communications Laboratories mindset.

  5. .

    Most of those that engage in that BS wouldn’t know an anti-federalist from a federalist.

    (and it’s real simple to not point an accusatory finger: just change it to passive voice and add a probability adjective. Notice the difference, So and so wouldn’t know an anti-federalist from a federalist. i.e. taken as, you are stupid.)

  6. bringing the meta about meta, over here?  You have to admit, it has its humorous, recursive aspects.

    I agree, pretty much — which is why I don’t post there anymore — or rather, if I say anything there, it’s once in a blue moon.  And I’ve stated my reasons, here, for why I don’t waste much time over there.

    But, if you mean what you are saying here, why not come over to the Dark Side?

    I understand the reasons for many people or everyone doing it (that is, attacking Daily Kos from elsewhere), so perhaps it is a good idea to bring them out in the open.  Daily Kos may be deteriorating, but it’s the liberal mega-blog, so all of us feel sorta heartsick at the entire site being turned into a festering pile of Republican smelling personality based crap.  It’s the blog to which everyone goes, at first, so we feel they should have fairer standards for all, as opposed, to, say, sites without much following, or much smaller sites, that can be more special interest and selective.  

    If they are the premiere site for Democrats, or want to act like it, well, then, they should be like it, and not let Republican lite Democrats walk all over everybody, like they do.  Yeah.  I get it.

    I left because of it, because making noise about it elsewhere, while not trying to really push back against it there (with all the accompanying crap), sort of had a stench about it that I didn’t really want.

  7. I’m just speaking for myself here.  Do you honestly think I’d bother with this battle if it were just about me and my personal fight at DKos?  Has anything in my blogging record ever pointed in that direction?

    Do you think yourself immune from the kind of politics of personal destruction that was outlined in the standards diary?

    You are very careful not to cross that line in your writing.

    Do you ever wonder why?

    And even then, you are still attacked.

  8. Do what you do best and you will be surprised to discover that some you hadn’t expected to be are a lot closer to your viewpoints than you realize. Figure out who those are, and engage with them. Allow yourselves to be surprised. Leave the rest alone. Let them continually prove what they are about. It’s their problems, not yours. It’s their time, not yours. You don’t need to call them out on it, because they prove what they are simply by being what they are. If you rise above, you will draw the contrast by so doing. But what really matters is that your time is better spent. We need you doing what you’re capable of doing. Fuck the meta. Help us fight on the issues.  

    I used to agree with this, pretty strongly in fact.

    And I still do, but…. it’s very difficult, for some people, to polish their pearls when they’re so busy dodging bullets.

    We (I say “we” even though not literally me much) tried that… for this whole past year.


    The main thrust, in my opinion, of this recent …meta… commandeered by buhdy, has not been an effort to actually STOP those folks from being who they are, but rather to highlight it and point the focus and sunlight on it, for others, the bystanders …. to see it for what it is, and make their own judgements…. with perhaps, a little bit more perspective.

  9. There would be no good in it.  I post things that aren’t even that popular HERE.  The (admitted superior) Docudharama modus operandi with diaries that post about issues, and unpopular truths is, the people who don’t want to really talk about them just DON’T.

    It’s better, yeah.  And I’m not fearful of being banned here, no.  But there just is no answer.  There’s a festering discontinuity in the idea of Democratic superiority to Republicans on social issues that just doesn’t bear up to close examination, especially if you are someone, say, like a GLBT’er.

    Democrats of the present complain about hate, but they glory in it.  They roll around in it.  They cover themselves in it.  They fearlessly let their representatives in Congress engage in hate about GLBT people, and don’t do anything or much of anything to counteract it, except maybe chastising those people rather than ripping them, as they’d rip a Republican.  Oh, this is not just about rhetoric, but it’s also about acts which amount to political homophobia.

    And when I talk about Democrats I’m talking about the elected variety and the Democratic pushers, not just any ole Democrat.  One that waves the hate doll to get people to vote Democratic.

    That is very ugly, but people either want to acknowledge it and move on, but they don’t really want to talk about it.

    • Edger on April 12, 2010 at 21:25

    what they want is response of any kind, so ignoring them is the one thing that drives them batty and makes them make themselves look like fools.

  10. The merits (or demerits) of my particular posting style are certainly debatable in an action-oriented context, as has correctly been pointed out by some on DD.

    At this point I’m just doing it when inspired. When I’m not, the quality drops off and no one is persuaded at all.

  11. Current diary brings out the all the examples as to the negative spiral…


  12. stared out in the comments as a welcome relief but soon turned into a quagmire of sludge that is not only hateful but so stupid it dulls your brain and you end up fighting the absurd. I believe that it actually reinforces the fear and willful denial and that these people do not want to look at political ‘reality’. People say over and over that these flame wars have always gone on as though that makes it normal. They are not pragmatic as coalitions are a necessity in politics.

    Strange that of my two worlds politically speaking the grassroots part of the party is so much more tolerant and democratic. No one asks me at a grass root level to get a mop and clean up. No one calls me a Naderite and no one tells me I must support policy that only furthers the corporate grasp on our nation and states. Issues are now governance and they seem unable to hook up to basic democratic tenets let alone the laws of the land or common good. They are not helping the party they are hell bent on deconstructing what gave it the majority and the WH. They have made me lose hope in citizens and humanity at large. They are not the center of anything but the fear and ignorance that allows the pols and the owners of the place to maintain their grip on our government and society.

    sorry for the rant but even if the meta goes away you cannot talk to a dinning room table that is as dumb as the it’s counterpart the teabaggers they fear so much. All they care about is power and winning while the rest of the world suffers and our laws and principles are deconstructed on two legs better, fear and idolatry. It’s a sewer and it taints your perspective to the point where you forget that they are not the norm. They are the  cowards who now man the gates of the new regime and maintain the bamboozle of peaceful ‘change’. It’s beyond tactics, civility or even politics.                    

    • Robyn on April 12, 2010 at 22:01

    …but I’m getting less and less readership.  That’s really becoming depressing.

  13. Keep your eye on the big picture you identified

    I write what I write at Daily Kos because I want to teach and learn and try to effect some movement on the issues.

    and hang in there.

    Giving up any blog to the barbarians doesn’t help you accomplish your mission.  So, take this as a buck-you-uppo and keep on keepin’ on at as many blog sites as will carry your message of Progressivism.

    We who want to elect more, better Democrats have to advocate, and advocate, and advocate again.

  14. This here shore does look like a meta essay.  Shore does.  Matter fact, sounds like one too.

    OK.  Move very slowly and lemme see those hands.  Hold em up where I can see em.  Higher.  Now, slowly, very slowly back away from that keyboard.  Push the chair gently back.  Keep those hands where I can see em.  Now slowly stand up and turn yourself around.  Face me.

    C’mon.  Time to see the great out of doors.  I think it’s time to have a few glasses of beer and a pretzel or two chardonnay and some baked brie.

    Truth is, you deserve better.  We all do.  Let’s talk about issues, mkay?  Meta’s like a fish.  It rots from the head down.

    • Metta on April 13, 2010 at 01:18

    I have seen some worthy soul searching there the last couple of days.  But it’s my nature to see things that way because my mind closes to the ultra negative.  It will be okay just as long as we look up from our navels and get to work again.  I enjoyed a lot of the discussion on your diary Turkana.  I should be working in the garden and beading but I’m a seeker still searching for my best way to go to work for my politics and values.

  15. My plan is workin’ to perfection.  

    The meta on the liberal blogs is tearin’ the ol’ Democrat party to shreds, like two competing Death Panels tryin’ to beat their quota for killin’ grandmothers.  Meanwhile, the brave Tea Partiers are gearin’ up for a Tax Day orgasm of patriotism (those are really awesome by the way).

    All is proceedin’ as I have foreseen.  


  16. Haven’t followed the latest DK sweata.  Not a worthwhile place on my radar anymore.

    I do wonder about what’s been happening here, however.  I’m not happy about some of Obama’s policies, but I would still rather have him as president than the alternative.  Does that make me Persona non Grata?  

    I brought this up in a recent comment:

    I’ve found myself cringing at some of the vitriol I’ve seen toward Obama (I’m fine with criticism, just not vitriol). It’s worrisome because one danger (one of many) from the wingnut right is that their hatred for Obama as a man has led to a disrespect for the office.  

    Criticism, yes; hunting packs in response (imo, for some, it’s less about supporting Obama than about getting off on hurting others): fuck ’em.  But, also nix on the disrespect toward a president as opposed to open debate about his policies, which is what makes a democracy.


    • sharon on April 13, 2010 at 04:33

    on a project due tomorrow, but did want to say that i see this as npk and buhdy see it.  the maligning that is going on cannot go uncontested.  those who are not aware will believe it if it sits there.  the fact that there were people today suggesting that buhdy wants to run dk – or that it is ineveitable that he will be banned – shows me just how ridiculous it has become.  not everyone parses things like you do and many are much more comfortable with status quo rather than questioning and demanding what is right.  i understand what you are saying about meta and issues, but to me this is an underlying issue that effects how effective we can be with issues.

  17. Someone had posted a “Top Comment” and I read it but the comment referred to someone named “she.” I clicked “parent” over and over but never got to who she was so I posted a comment in Top Comments asking “Who she is?”

    The Kossack answered me in an email. She was another kossack. I had another email opened and by mistake I replied to the New York Botanical Garden media department with;

    Oh meta stuff. Ever since everything became Jane Hamsher’s fault I refuse to read what one blogger has to say about or how they react to another blogger. But that just me, I never knew that blogging was about blogging. I thought it was all about the other 308 million Americans. One of the main reasons I’ve backed off is the personality wars.

    What was really amazing was that even thought the letter I replied to from the NYBG was about Emily Dickinson’s Garden: The Poetry of Flowers, I got a response about how much they agreed with me as to where political blogging has gone.

    I had a good laugh. If the New York Botanical Garden knows how much DailyKos is circling the drain, then the stupidity is well known.


  18. What exactly do you think I should do when I see this?

    Hell, if we could only get people on this site (0+ / 0-)

    to read these postings. Instead, crap taking down President Obama shoots to the top of the wreck list. From privileged, white so-called “progressives”. Oh noes!! The healthcare bill isn’t perfect!

    Good luck with that. Maybe everyone can get so demoralized that we can elect more neo-Confederates into power, because I’m sure that’ll solve everything.

    Here we go.  

    Why should I remain at a blogsite where more and more it is becoming perfectly allowable by the site admins to call me a racist because I criticize the Obama Administration?

    If this is going to continue, unchecked, which I will call supported, then I will just go elsewhere to find my news and information.  It is not like there aren’t dozens to chose from.

    Thank you for your tireless dedication and your beautiful photo work.

  19. Jennifer Clare was/is part of of that gang in the second thread.  She was lobbing potshots from the diary from today, checking the waters to see if she could get away with it.

    I am DONE being called a racist.

    Turkana—–That second link-the “sistah—–”  Do you understand that the perpetrators of that diary believe that they have been given special dispensation, from I don’t know who, to have their own diary, that they are allowed to invite only those people they want to hear, and that they can pile on donuts and viciously disrespect anyone who comes in that they do not want?  

    I will state right here, that the diarist who wrote it claimed it is a “Private Diary”, that she is the sheriff and she gets to make the rules, the FAQ/DKos rules do not apply to her diary.

    All references to “Private Thread” are now gone.  But 3 other people saw the declaration, I will not name who at this point.  You can tell me I am spreading lies, or I am into CT, but I know what I saw, because I was completely shocked.

    MB knows about this.  He wrote, when asked, that he will deal with it.  Easiest just to ask MB about what has been done, if anything.

    I do not see how any of this will be resolved.  If there are a number of people on DK who are insistent and persistent with their belief that all people who criticize Obama are racists, then that is what DK is going to represent.  Maybe DK4 will paper over the problem, but people with the firm belief that they are being unendlessly persecuted because of “racist” criticism, are not going to feel better, or change their beliefs any time soon.  From my POV, it will only get worse.  

    All presidents get  greatly criticized.  Obama knew he would encounter criticism while in office, it comes with the territory.  For anyone to think there would be no criticism, and then when it happens, blame it on massive, pervasive racism, well, this a a sociological manifestation that must have been forseen.  7 years of criticism——that is what is in the future.  How is this going to play out?  

  20. We think we are reaching 100’s or 1,000’s, and our brains explode.

    Better to speak to the ONE person we are replying to, and give them the attention we would if they were sitting across the table from us.  We’ll be more thoughtful, and we’ll know when to break it off.

  21. IMO, the mechanics of blogs could be improved. Quite easily, I should think.

    Basically, you should give diarists the ability to ban people from further commenting in any particular diary, if they don’t think the commentator is being serious. (But only after the offending commentator makes at least one post.) Since some diarists will do so dishonestly, or because they’re fanatics or overly irrational,

    1. people who are banned should have the ability to respond, with either the verbiage or the link to verbiage clearly shown in the diary
    2. the banned person should have the opportunity to troll-rate the diarist who banned them

    The enhanced blogs should also display links to diarists’ lifetime banning records, plus their lifetime troll ratings. (Dimensions for the latter might be in terms of number of troll ratings  divided by number of diaries, divided by number of unique commentators; the troll rates should be weighted according to the “trollishness” of the person giving the troll rating.  So, if a person gets banned by a large number of distinct diarists, and in a large number of diaries per diarist, the weight of their troll-rating of diarists is decreased, accordingly.)

    Another mechanical approach to addressing both commentator trolling and excessive diarist irrationality , which could also be tried, is to allow the diarist to throw an optional switch (let’s assume that it’s on, by default), which allows the diarist to confine commentators to a single reply per day, or per X hours. (With visual cues that show you when the diary is writable, to yourself, which are updated with each page refresh.)

    The idea, here, is to channel commentators in the direction of writing longer, essay-like responses to the diary (or, alternatively, to another commentator).  On the negative side, it will put a damper on the sort of normal back and forth of a conversation, plus some people may have something significant to say to a number of commentators, who aren’t gong to be bothered checking back in after X hours, just for the privilege of doing so.

    In the case of dailykos, there are so many comments which aren’t trollish, but are not really substantive, either, that one can waste a great deal of time wading through them. For such a high-volume site, at least trying some of the fixes I propose seems like a very good idea. In fact, I think I’ll write a post, there, to suggest this.

  22. https://www.docudharma.com/show

    This is red meat.

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