kurt's nightmare

Generally, I post once a week. Topics are randomly selected and depend mostly upon whether it's baseball season or not. Other topics will include sex, politics, old girlfriends, music, and whatever else pops into my little brain. If you'd like to read, or ignore, my blog about China: http://meidabizi.blogspot.com/

Location: Dayton, OH, Heard & McDonald Islands

I'm an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Dayton. I represent no one but myself, and barely do that. I'm here mostly by accident.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Guns. Queers. And Both.

In contrast to what a number of conservatives believe, liberals (or "liberals") aren't out to get your guns. There will be murmurs about fully automatic weapons in the hands of junior high students being a bad idea without a waiting period, or "cop killer" ammunition being available in vending machines in bars also being, well, not a great idea. But for the most part, the "liberals" (and especially the Democrats) have given up on this issue. Repeat after me: they really don't want my gun(s).

They might make it somewhat more difficult to check out of an insane asylum and buy an AK-47 at a drive-thru on the way home (or to the victim's home), but that's about the only obstacle you'll see from the "liberal" party.

Indeed, we really never seem to hear much about murder, guns, violence and other things, as if they pose a problem we might want to solve, or at least address. Odd: was it Eldridge Cleaver who said that violence is as American as apple pie? The conservative wings of both parties respond, well, that's right and that's the way we are going to keep it. There are no solutions to violence in America, except to make sure you are better armed--in church, at school, wherever--than your potential adversary.

So the Democrats seem to have given up on guns as an issue.

Is it possible the Republicans may give up on gay marriage as an issue? A couple of recent news items, one a poll (from the "Values Voters" [which means, for me, "people who don't have your values," not that they have values and I don't]) that indicates gay marriage is way way behind abortion rights as an issue; it came in third. A second, polling (I think) Iowa Republicans, indicates that >90% said gay marriage changed nothing in their lives.

Wow. A truism that comes true.

I suggest the first question every minister, priest, rabbi, imam, lawyer, and psychotherapist ask a couple (a heterosexual couple) whose marriage is in trouble is this: is it because of gay marriage?

Then we can get some good, hard data.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Niggers, and now queers. What offensive words will Dr. Mosser use next for shock value?

2:15 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

Ah, Jesus. Brave Mr. Anonymous, how DO you type with one hand?

"Queer" is a standard term, as in "Queer Studies." Use the Google. Do a search. Really. You'll be shocked to find out a) what there is to know and b) what of a) you have missed, are missing, and will miss.

Would you like to suggest a whole list of things you are completely ignorant about, or should we just guess?

2:25 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

I'll even make it easier for you.

From Wikipedia (even you could probably locate that site):

"'Queer' has traditionally meant odd or unusual, but its use in reference to LGBT communities, as well as those perceived to be members of those communities, has largely replaced the traditional definition and application."

2:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should use the word "slant eye" in your next post. That'll get people talking!

4:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should learn to read.


6:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Dr. Mosser - can you tell us a story about kikes next? There's nothing like a good old heeb hate fable.

8:29 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

Well, it's an odd thing. Gay men and lesbians, with some degree of frequency, use the word "queer," as a term of solidarity. You might read Hebdidge's Subversion, were you really interested.

The comment about Obama was in a context that clearly is beyond some people's grasp.

But you can relax, because in your case, "dumbass" will always mean dumbass.

If you wish to make a point that would at least indicate a scintilla of evidence that you've read this blog (understanding it may be far too optimistic), then keep posting.

If you wish to continue to embarrass yourself, well, that's your choice. But you might have more fun doing something more productive for society, such as playing in traffic.

9:01 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

While I'm at it, the traditional anti-Semitic/Judeophobic term is standardly spelled "hebe." But, again, offering information to one as profoundly dense as you seem to be is somewhat like playing Bach to lichens.

9:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's fun to be shocking!

Spear chucker! I'm brilliant like Dr. Mosser!

6:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous, you are indeed an idiot. Could it be you are our old friend Joe the Moron, he who couldn't understand evolution, yet professed to profess about it?

Dr. (as in Doctor) Anonymous

12:37 AM  
Blogger kmosser said...

Anonymous (not the other one): you seem to enjoy this. I'm glad. You simply are confirming that you didn't read any of the material, focus on a word out of context, and then think by repeating other words that are generally regarded as in bad taste, that you have generated some sort of insight.

But as far as I can tell, you haven't been successful at much here, beyond embarrassing yourself.

Is there a reason you are so pointedly ignoring what was actually said in the blog on which you are commenting?

8:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dr. Mosser,

I'm not entirely sure. Perhaps you could enlighten the rest of your readers on your rationale for deleting opposing posts from your comments. We're not scared of scrutiny, are we?

11:43 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

I'd be glad to enlighten you. When did this happen? I've never deleted a comment from this blog, regardless of how foolish it may make a person appear. One can, I believe, remove one's own comments; I've done it when I've had a typo, or accidentally posted something twice.

So, given that you've claimed opposing views have een deleted, do you have any evidence that this has been done? Would you like to identify yourself, if only with a nickname or pseudonym, so we can know who is making such claims, unfounded as they may be?

12:18 AM  
Blogger kmosser said...

To the anonymous who is apparently not that anonymous, nor Dr. Anonymous, but is, evidently, a twit:

I went back through the last 10 sets of comments. One comment was deleted; by the author of the comment.

So the charge of deleting all those opposing posts sounds a bit hollow.

I haven't gone through the earlier posts, but I doubt if you will find any posts there removed by me, unless they contained a typo (I left my post above, in spite of the egregious "een" instead of "been") or were redundant, and, importantly, were written by me.

Either identify when and where an "opposing comment" was deleted, or do us all a favor and get back to your pop-up books. Come back later when you're ready to play with the grown-ups.

12:28 AM  
Blogger kmosser said...

OK, I went back through another dozen or so, including the fabulous discussion with "Joe" on evolution, generating 90 comments.

The only posts deleted were deleted by the authors (approximately two cases); hence, not me (except in maybe one case, where I was the author and deleted my own post).

So, now, the claim that I delete opposing comments just seems to be false. Possibly even a lie, as if that could happen.

I'm happy to see opposing views. I'm less happy to see people post things when they don't read what the blog actually says. I'm still less happy when they opt for diversionary tactics, and are disingenuous, basing ignorant claims on assumptions that are demonstrably false, thus confirming that the number of twits in our world seems not to be diminishing.

12:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Anonymous Twit (I like that, by the way):

You have demonstrated, on at least three occasions, that you are a literalist incapable of nuance. For you, the superficial meaning is the only possible meaning. To wit (as it were):

1. "Nigger" is a racist word. Mosser uses that word. Therefore Mosser must be a racist. No consideration whatsoever is given to how he used that word. It bears pointing out that you yourself, twit, used the word in the first comment in this thread. You must therefore, by your own logic, be a racist.

2. "Queer" is the accepted term used by the referenced group in question. When this is pointed out to you, you ignore it and persist in your delusion that the term is offensive. It bears pointing out, once again, that you also used the word in the first comment in this thread. You must therefore, by our own logic, be offensive.

3. You claim Mosser has deleted opposing posts without a scintilla of evidence, and when confronted with the truth that belies your claim, you simply ignore it.

I persist in my theory that you are Joe the Moron that plagued these pages last Spring in his futile quest to make a coherent point about evolution (or anything else). There couldn't really be two of them out there, could there? You probably believe that painting a Hitler mustache on Obama makes him Hitler-like.

For God's sake's, Joe, read a book, get some help, something!!!

Dr. (as in Doctor) Anonymous

12:43 AM  
Blogger kmosser said...

And people say the use-mention distinction is overrated.

12:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And another thing. I was waxing nostalgic and went back to our 90-comment thread with Joe the Moron. On a couple of occasions, I wrote:

"You lie!"

Is this perhaps a clue of the identify of "Joe"? Too much of a coincidence?

(And if so, I want some of the royalties of the millions he's making off my catch-phrase!)

Dr. Anonymous

12:19 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

Evidently, our pal scurried away, having been confronted with what one might call an "inconvenient truth."

9:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dr Anonymous:

"Mosser uses that word. Therefore Mosser must be a racist."

Please cite where I have said that. I've only said that his purpose for using racially insensitive terms is for shock value. I apologize for not fitting the argument that you attempted to construct.

"You claim Mosser has deleted opposing posts without a scintilla of evidence, and when confronted with the truth that belies your claim, you simply ignore it."

What evidence could I produce that would convince you that it was deleted? I made a post in the productive summertime thread, and it no longer exists. I did not delete it. Dr. Mosser has gone out of his way to say that it wasn't of his doing, but the fact remains that it is gone.

I do apologize for my late response, however. I endeavor to get a university job so I can post racial and homophobic slurs to make my posts "pop" at any time of the day instead of doing actual work. I'll try harder in the future.

8:22 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

I wish you luck on getting that job. It will be difficult with an inability to read or construct arguments; even I had to do some of those things.

Normally I would consider deleting posts by insufferable morons who persist in ignoring all cogent responses, showing said morons the fundamental and demonstrative mistakes they have made. But, as stated, I haven't removed any posts but my own, and when a post is removed, it is indicated by the challenging phrase "this post was removed . . . . "

Is there a point you're trying to make here. It is beyond clear that the words you refer to as being used for "shock value" were not. You choose to ignore the repeated attempts to explain that. So what exactly are you trying to do?

My hypothesis is that you are trying to make self-embarrassment an Olympic sport, and are working toward the Gold.

Feel free to continue, but after showing someone a dozen times that "2 + 2 = 4" and that person insists that it doesn't, I'm inclined to give up and wish you well.

But you are creating a rather ludicrous spectacle of yourself. Rock on, Beavis.

9:30 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:18 AM  
Blogger kmosser said...

Well, our friend refers to a "productive summertime thread." Lord knows what that is (has any thread really been productive?).

One discussion on evolution generated 90 comments, by far the most. He (she?) might mean that one, and perhaps January, in his/her world qualifies as "summer," given his/her interpretation of other things.

In those 90 comments, one was removed. Mine. By me. And it states there

"Blogger kmosser said...

This post has been removed by the author."

So perhaps our anonymous not only is besieged by those who use "racially insenstive" word--without, of course, understandin in the least why that word was used, in spite of it being explained to him/her repeatedly--but the very technology making this blog possible continues the conspiracy, allowing his/her comments to be removed without a trace (unlike all others).

There is another hypothesis, but that would be icky to suggest, and might involve repeated uses of the word "moron." So I shall demur.

8:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It once again bears pointing out that our Anonymous Twit used a "racially insensitive" word in the first posting of this thread. If he then attempts to justify it by saying "Well that was only because..." I would stop him and say: "Sorry. You don't get to explain the context you used it in while simultaneously ignoring the context Mosser used it in."

This strikes me as the height of hypocrisy and double standards, akin to the millions of examples we see on Fox news every night (The latest: complaining that school children singing about Obama constitutes indoctrination while similar songs about Bush are patriotic).

Anonymous Twit, you are a bad human being!

Dr. Anonymous

3:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It once again bears pointing out that our Anonymous Twit used a "racially insensitive" word in the first posting of this thread. If he then attempts to justify it by saying "Well that was only because..." I would stop him and say: "Sorry. You don't get to explain the context you used it in while simultaneously ignoring the context Mosser used it in.""

I've remained consistent in my criticism of Dr. Mosser for his use of racially insensitive terms for "shock value". Try a little reading, please.

"Anonymous Twit, you are a bad human being!"

Let's see your name, tough guy.

"Well, our friend refers to a "productive summertime thread.""

Yes - it's located directly above this thread as you look at the main page.

"This post has been removed by the author."

I sense a trend.

10:03 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

The point is, once again, that there is a reason--a number of them--to use a word other than shock value. Dick Gregory used it, Lenny Bruce used it; rappers (e.g. NWA) used it, various scholars have used it, all to make a point. You no doubt are familiar with David Dinkins's use of the term, and that the first African-American novel was entitled "Our Nig." If only these people realized that words hurt, and that shock value is the univocally determined semantic value established by our noble and brave Anonymous (you could give yourself a pseudonym; perhaps I'll ask for suggestions?).

My point was that one can be a racist and never use the word. That doesn't mean the person isn't a racist, he, in this case, was just using the "right" words. And it was precisely that kind of person to whom I was responding, as I've now said for the n-teenth time, approaching ad infinitum.

Yet your idée fixe is that you have the single possible correct explanation, choose to ignore any alternative, and conclude that your interpretation is the sole correct one. This is a lovely combination of solipsism and onanism. Congrats!

I removed one of my own posts so you could see what happens when a post--all those except yours, for some deep dark reason--is removed. It is indicated that it has been removed.

Except in your case; perhaps your luminescent brilliance overwhelmed the software? Rest assured, I've never removed any of your posts, particularly since they consistently seem to confirm the general view of the quality of your insights.

Just out of curiosity, what is your reaction to gay men and lesbians when they refer to themselves as "queers"? Or when gay and lesbian scholars proudly refer to their field as "queer studies"? Do you inform them of your discovery that such words can have no other meaning than that which you determine?

Again, I hope you employ these superpowers of yours to do good.

10:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous Twit said:

"I've remained consistent in my criticism of Dr. Mosser for his use of racially insensitive terms for 'shock value' "

Odd, then, that you don't see anything wrong with your use of the same word. And here is the crux of the matter: your implication is that the value of your use of the word far exceeds the value of Mosser's use of it, shock or otherwise.

How incredibly arrogant and narrow-minded, particularly considering the obvious lack of analytical powers or logical arguments coming from your quarters. You can use it as you see fit, but he can't? The hypocrisy and double-standards are astounding.

I repeat, Anonymous Twit: you are a bad human being! (an assessment for which my identity, by the way, is completely irrelevant. Knowing my name will not make you a better human being).

12:54 AM  
Anonymous Earl Ishmael said...

I wonder if he read any of Johnathan Swift's A Modest Proposal. I'm sure he really wanted to cook babies.

10:59 AM  
Blogger kmosser said...

Swift was a bastard, in addition to hating the poor and advocating cannibalism. He also wasn't very funny. He evidently hallucinated; he wrote some book about a really, really big guy.

Since the term "big" doesn't, for me, have shock value, then he was writing about a really, really big guy. Craaazy!

Almost as bad was Voltaire, who thought people needed to garden more.

11:03 AM  
Blogger bmackintosh said...

If the use of "nigger" and "queer" are meant to shock, then I find myself insulted. It would take substantially more to shock me than slurs that I have heard uttered so many times by a wide range of people. I think "Anonymous Twit" is a student of Kurt's that must of received a B- on paper. Why don't you make a more interesting point. Kurt has said (by far) more interesting things that one may disagree with, his atheism, views of evolution, almost romantic embrace of unions, disdain for the Catholic church while making a living from one of their institutions, slavish devotion Marxist theory, and most of all his ridicule of Chicago Cubs fans. But saying "Queer" just to shock? Boring!!!!

7:39 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

I don't have disdain for "the Catholic Church," dude; I do have disdain for some of the things done in its name, and the remarkable ability of some of its members to turn a blind eye to its faults (motes, beams, I know).

There really isn't "a" Marxist theory, but many; so I'd like to know which one of those I show "slavish devotion" to.

The Cubs are losers. Evidently, given the ambiguous comment about evolutionary theory, you aren't much of an empiricist.

"Romantic" devotion to unions consists of workers without unions vs. workers with unions. The former are all too often at the mercy of the boss; the latter, hardly perfect, at least get to be in the fight.

Did I mention the Cubs are losers?

7:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, let's sop all piling on Mosser…of course he did write the following:

“The hatred this group has for Hillary Clinton has been developed and polished to a remarkable white-hot ferocity. It is easy to find pictures of her dressed as Hitler, and she is frequently referred to by the right (at least among themselves) as "Shrillery Hitlerbeast" and "Hildabeast." This is well before she even has the nomination. Imagine these angry, well-funded, and otherwise unoccupied folks who so hate her when they hear a modest proposal about health care or revision of the tax structure…All administrations have their screw ups. If (when) Clinton has one, I fear all hell will break loose, and we will have a repeat of her husband's impeachment, with her opponents having the advantage of experience…I don't want to spend four years going through that, or imagining what things won't get their due attention because of it…That is enough to look elsewhere, so I'm supporting Obama…Simply to avoid moving the political debate from noxious to toxic is enough of a reason for me.”

Mosser, you are so adorable!

Dr. A.

(But you are right. The Cubs are losers.)

12:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting question. Given the vitriol of the attacks on Obama (with his own Hitler mustaches, occasionally), would the climate have been more temperate, less temperate, or equally temperate with Clinton.

It is probably hard to imagine that had she addressed health care, some might have brought up her earlier attempts to move us to a socialist fascist anarchist communist dictatorship.


10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mosser said:

"would the climate have been more temperate, less temperate, or equally temperate with Clinton."

As was pointed out in that thread, oh so long ago, the projected climate should not have been a factor in the presidential choice, only the quality of the presidential candidate. As it turns out, the climate projections were wrong.

Perhaps if we had focused a little more back then on the actual qualities and policies of the candidates, we might have realized Obama's propensity to compromise and cave in to moderate and conservative opposition...EVERY...SINGLE...TIME!

Hillary certainly has her faults, but she has balls (as it were), certainly more so than Obama. It is hard to imagine her compromising on all of the issues that Obama said he would support, only to see him turn his back on them. (eg. torture, rendition, health care Guantanamo, Iraq, etc.)

Oh well, water under the bridge, live and learn, etc.

Dr. A.

12:06 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

I stand by my vote, although I am in agreement with you on a number of things about Obama. As I've noted before, he is a Chicago pol, and one of the first Mayor Daley's mottoes was "don't make waves and don't back no losers." Obama has more than a bit of that.

Whether Clinton would have been different, and better, is certainly a hypothetical at this point. I don't see her doing much different in Afghanistan, or having had much more success in reforming health care. But, as with all such hypotheses, it's fun to speculate.

1:47 PM  
Blogger bmackintosh said...

You see, those responses are more interesting. I won't bother arguing the points since I am a evolutionary-creationist, dealt far too much with Unions to be a fan, and don't really know that much about the different versions of Marxism. It's always fun hurling the name "Marxist" towards someone even when one doesn't have a complete grasp of the definition, just ask Mr. Mischler. He enjoys painting with broad strokes.

Cubs are lovable losers.

5:02 PM  
Blogger bmackintosh said...

I totally agree with Dr. A regarding Obama's keeping of rendition. Absolutely inexcusable to outsource persons of interest for interrogation techniques that are illegal according to U.S. and international law. Had I known that this would happen, I never would have supported Obama over Clinton.

5:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

bmackintosh said:

"Had I known that this would happen, I never would have supported Obama over Clinton."

Well, that's kind of the point. Nobody was asking those (or a number of other) questions of Obama, certainly not on this blog, which was focusing on "climate projections." Some of us were suspicious and tried to raise awareness, alas, to no avail.

Dr. A

11:22 AM  
Blogger kmosser said...

I've mentioned before, and I will again, that Obama is a Chicago pol. That's pretty important to keep in mind, along with the first Mayor's dictum--the mantra of Chicago politics--"don't make no waves, don't back no losers."

At the same time, is it at all conceivable that Clinton would have done something equally reprehensible? And possibly this same thing Obama is?

2:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"is it at all conceivable that Clinton would have done something equally reprehensible? And possibly this same thing Obama is?"

I guess we'll never know. Hard to imagine, though, she could have been worse.

Dr. A

3:44 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

I'm not sure I agree that it is all that hard to imagine.

7:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's not that it is so hard to imagine, it's that it's almost impossible to actually _be_ worse. How could Hillary be worse on, say, rendition? Or bending to moderate/conservative forces on health care reform?

But all this misses the point, which is that this is a conversation we should have been having in the Spring of 08, not the Fall of 09. Instead, we got "climate projections" which turned out to be completely wrong.

1:20 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

Actually, we don't know if they were "wrong"; as a counterfactual, there is certainly room for an atmosphere more poisonous than the current one, regardless of how noxious that current one may be.

Perhaps I should have said "equally bad." Hillary would have us out of Afghanistan? Not using drones in Pakistan? Escalating or deescalating? Eliminating rendition? Closing Guantanomo? Ending "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

I have said I agree with you that Obama hasn't done some--many--things I would have preferred. The "climate projection" wasn't the only basis for my vote, but it was a factor, as I said. It was enough of a factor, all other variables being equal.

And how we know that Hillary would have done any differently, or better, remains obscure to me. If she is so principled against these egregious acts, shouldn't she resign her current position?

She talked pretty tough during the campaign, including the debates. Perhaps we should compare her record as "hawk" vs. Obama's?

Suddenly she's no longer a moderate/centrist Democrat, but a liberal's greatest fantasy?

6:55 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

Aren't we supposed to be talking about whether she's a queer?

Here's an interesting claim (I've given the link for the longer statement) from Clinton herself on her plans for Afghanistan. Just an example:

"As President, she will be prepared to send additional American troops to Afghanistan as part of a stronger, larger NATO effort. She will consult the field commanders and our Allies in deciding how many troops are required."

This isn't about rendition, of course, but this sounds an awful lot like what Obama is doing. At least to me it does.


7:09 PM  
Blogger bmackintosh said...

Dr. A is correct in saying that we should have asked these questions in 2008. Of course she ran as a hawk, but maybe if questions concerning rendition were asked it would have pushed public policy.

I simply assumed that Obama's views in multilateralism, closing Gitmo, using greater diplomacy, etc would naturally exclude something like rendition.

4:19 PM  
Blogger kmosser said...

We obviously don't know. But it is an interesting argument: candidate B runs as not much of a hawk, breaks some promises, reneges on some important things, and therefore is worse than candidate A runs as more of a hawk than B.

There is, of course, the Realpolitik aspect that no one ends up doing what they'd like once in D.C..

And it takes courage. Who was the last really courageous Democrat: LBJ with the voting rights act?

7:31 PM  

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