October 16, 2006

Textbook case

Case study for a Monday morning:

You're a bright young guy. Been to one of those premier institutions with numerous "I"s in the acronyms they are known by. Graduated thinking hey, I'm bright, I have this degree from this premier place, I'm not just the whiskers on the cat, but the whole cat's face and possibly the paws too.

Naturally, like so many of us do, you think you have all the answers to the world's problems. You believe implicitly that nobody could possibly disagree with your answers, nor find fault with your impeccable logic. It's obvious to you, has to be obvious to all.

So you start putting those answers out for public consumption.

Then you find, like so many of us also do, that there are indeed people who disagree, who don't quite see your impeccable logic with the clarity you do. It puts those first niggling doubts in your mind. But oh no, you can't admit to them for public consumption, because one of the lessons you think you imbibed from that premier establishment is never to admit to doubts.

(Of course, you didn't learn the most important lesson of all: the brightest guys welcome and learn from doubt. In fact, that's why they are the brightest).

So: faced with the troglodytes who put out other answers for public consumption, who won't see and applaud your logic, what do you do?

Textbook-case easy: you make snide remarks about their anatomy.

(Of course, you didn't learn that other important lesson: remarks about the other guy's anatomy don't undermine the other guy's arguments, they only undermine yours).

Textbook-case in point: this.


Charu said...

nonsense, I just read it and I think it is a fine, well-written piece of pornography. some people just have no taste. am not saying who though..

Ravikiran said...

"Of course, you didn't learn the most important lesson of all: the brightest guys welcome and learn from doubt. In fact, that's why they are the brightest"

Was there ever any doubt in your mind over whether the "guy" was just making a snide remark or was making a serious point?

Dilip D'Souza said...

Was there ever any doubt in your mind over whether the "guy" was just making a snide remark or was making a serious point?

No doubt whatsoever. The "guy" was making a serious point, for sure.

In much the same way, even with the same word, another serious point was made three months ago by a "guy" who wrote this: "If you want to point out an instance where MadMan strayed from the topic, you could have pointed out the part where he pointed out that you couldn't help being an arsehole. That point, even if true, was certainly off-topic."

Ravikiran said...

Well that too was a serious and true point, but not very important. Yes, Shivam happens to be an arsehole, but that fact is not very important to the vast majority of the world's population who do not have to deal with him. But Aadisht's point is much more important, viz. once you start demanding "open access" to people's property, it is just a few short steps from there to demanding open access to women's cunts. He is not the first person to make the point.

Anonymous said...

These guys are witty. Like Churchill.

No, not that Churchill: this one.

Anonymous said...

The "guy" in this referred link made it easy to bypass whatever argument he was making by the language he used.

Dont have the context and didnt want to after sampling that crude language but:

If one were to look beyond the language ( if one can look beyond guns & bombs at what ppl wielding them are trying to say with them, one can surely look beyond some !@#$*&^) it would appear that this "guy" is trying to establish a natural right of access control that anybody has to what they own....

But this of course must have been obvious to everybody that read it.


Pankaj said...

Wonder if the guy would use the same kind of foul language with one of his female) relatives who had a point of disagreement with him. Or how he would react if somebody else used similar language for the said relative in their public blog.

This is language which might (just might) pass muster in a bull session with his mates at IIxx institute. When used on his public blog it just exposes his crassness, intolerance, frustration and childishness. If freedom of expression gives a right to people to express their views it also imposes a right on them to be responsible in the language they use.


lod said...

That was disgusting. The politics of "ownership" and "authorship" are known devils as it were. Yet, instead of reasoned political arguments you get this disgusting drivel. On so many issues people profess themselves as 'champions of reason' - yet when faced with a confident, politically assertive young woman, suddenly it's all hands off. It's funny or would be if I didn't know the young lady concerned..

Anonymous said...

A cheap shot to make a point? Is that all he does.
I think he intentionally made that comment with the knowledge that people would react with revulsion and that he could smugly point out that he is making a point and that "we dont get it" because we are blinded by our emotions. In fact, there are people already doing that in the comments above.
What a moron...
Why do I even bother!

Neela said...

Dilip: I find the argument put forth by the guy morally offensive. However, I wish you wouldn't bring the IIT/IIMs into this discussion. For every person like this, these fine schools graduate a hundred who don't resort to such illformed (forget offensive) arguments when making their point and moreoever, are willing to listen to other people put forth their argument.



Disclaimer: I graduated from one of these schools.

Anonymous said...

He had removed the post after having made it in the first place. God knows what posessed him, he put it back.

What does he expect in response? An analogy that takes his anatomy into account?

Anirudh said...

Like Neela said, why bring the IITs and IIMs into it? Whether a majority of their graduates are good people or idiots does not matter; using them to attack Aadisht is being as childish as him.

kuffir said...

a 'few short steps from people's property to women's cunts'.

marx, lenin, mao, stalin...fidel castro, prakash karat..prachanda - now who advocated that short journey, i wonder.

but, looks like, it was much easier for the blogger being discussed.

Dilip D'Souza said...

Anirudh, I'm using the IITs/IIMs to attack this guy? How?

Anirudh said...

Let me put it this way. Why bring the numerous "I"s into the picture?

Dilip D'Souza said...

Anirudh, because that's part of the background that persuades some guys they are the whiskers on the cat. Not all, only some. This is no reflection on the institution(s): I have no doubts about their excellence.

Ravikiran said...

OK, but isn't this one of those "You may not agree with everything he says, but the way he says it makes you think" sort of posts? Or is this statement applicable only to posts that make you think what Dilip wants you to think?

Anonymous said...

1. Likely the guy wouldnt have been any less obnoxious without the II* tag. Suspect the gratuitous II* reference triggered by some equally gratuitous references to BITs as the "refuge of II*-rejects" or some such recently.

2. "You may not agree with everything he says, but the way he says it makes you think"

The post under discussion looked more like a "you may agree with the point he is trying to make but the way he says it makes you want to NOT think so" ... kind of post.


Sidhusaaheb said...

I think that if it is possible to establish the blogger's identity, the lady in question could even sue him...I would say she should sue him...

I agree that when this guy could not come up with a logical argument, in response, he resorted to doing something like this.

Neela said...

Ravikiran: I suspect the person could have found an equally well-reasoned yet less offensive analogy to make his/her point. In fact, if people are so overwhelmed or offended by the analogy that they lose sight of what point its being used to make, I would put it under the category of bad argument (offense aside). It convinces nobody.



Anonymous said...

well you did say you were grateful and proud not to go to iit. obviously you have a complicated relationship with iit and iitians. i am hardly surprised you lose no opportunity to stick the knife in and twist it for good measure. you shouldn't, because you were born with a silver spoon unlike us 'merit'orious people.

Anonymous said...

The fundamental problem with Aadisht Khanna's post is that nowhere in his / her comment does Tejal even advocate the end of elitist institutes. All he/she says is instead of having a debate over whether there should be free entry into elitist institutes, the debate should be about whether those institutes should even exist. Note he/she does not offer an opinion on the actual debate itself. Hence, Aadisht's post merely mischaracterizes Tejal's comment and uses it as an entry point to further his own agenda which has nothing to do with Tejal's comment, basically scapegoating him / her in the process. And that is the real issue here. I am surprised to see Rev. Ravikiran miss this hugely egregious strawman while happily focussing on defending the anatomical references.

Dilip D'Souza said...

Thank you Gawker.

Neela, you too.