Wednesday, January 18, 2012

I'm A Little Confused Here

The next time I see a comment start off with an insincere "I'm a little confused here..." or words to that effect, I'm tempted to blankly ask, "What's so confusing, you ****ing cretin? The logic is simple. Try reading it again."

A large amount of internet discussion volume nowadays is composed of crappy discussion flair. Coarse language and rudeness isn't much better, but it is at least slightly.


IlĂ­on said...

It may be a genuine, if very poorly presented, statement of perplexity, but it's generally a passive-aggressive ploy, a variation on what I call "Deny-and-Demand" -- simply deny that a good argument (against one's own position) has been offered, and demand yet another argument; repeat. The object is to put "the bag guy" on the defensive, off balance, without ever having expended the effort to show that he *ought* to be on the defensive. That is, rather than showing that the other's argument is weak or defective -- rather than actually making an argument against the argument one disapproves -- one uses "the enemy's" general desire to get along and to be helpful against him to get him to behave as though the argument he has offered has already been shown weak or defective, such that he goes on a wild-goose chase to offer yet another.

What shows this to be a ploy, rather than a genuine request for explanation, is that there will be no specifics about the (alleged) perplexity, either in the initial claim of perplexity nor in any response to a request for narrowing of the scope of the implicitly demanded further explanation.

Perhaps this variation could be called "Play It Again, Sam"

Crude said...

Well, I think a person can play this game and then follow it up with an actual argument. It's just cutesy and overdone, and my patience for cutesy is running pretty thin lately.

I'm a cranky bastard.