Sincere compliment

06 Jan

Despite the recent (but long-developing) breach between us, and despite the fact that I still think he was out of order in the matters I raised so forthrightly a short time ago, I have to say Daniel has found a better path for his blog, and for that he must thank his aunt, who may resent being told she is a rather good comic creation — but she is.

Now if only that blog can get on with its chosen role, while I and others get on with ours, all will be fine. Whether one thinks a blog trivial while the other thinks a blog pretentious really is beside the point: both blogs can exist, and do. We each do what we think matters; it is a waste of energy to focus on what other people do and say rather than on what, rightly or wrongly, seems valuable to do oneself. The fact that we differ markedly in approach and disagree on a range of matters does not alter the fact we also agree on other matters. Difference is inevitable and does not spell the end of the universe or of the human race; in fact living with, even valuing, difference is something we all need to learn, surely. Human nature, fortunately, can often surprise us, or so I have found.

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Posted by on January 6, 2007 in blogging, Pontification and raving, Web stuff, Weird


5 responses to “Sincere compliment

  1. Bruce

    January 7, 2007 at 1:16 am

    Well, if you want a different save the world type to argue against, try BLTC Research. Their website has been up for a while (since the mid 90s) and I remember reading some of their stuff in 1998.

    I’ve got a discussion on utilitarianism going on on my blog and a counter-criticism against BLTC’s argument against utilitarianism.

    BLTC’s claims are peculiar; they aim to engineer a global paradise (through drugs and perception alteration) yet rail against negative utilitarianism with arguments they fail to adequately substantiate. Actually, sometimes they just proclaim the intellectual guilt of negative utilitarians without backing it up at all.

    There. You have something else to go on with.

  2. Daniel

    January 7, 2007 at 7:21 am

    Neil, I thank you for your post and for its positive tone. Let me assure you, I have no wish to engage in hostilities with anyone but, if pushed, I will return the favour.

    The last time I offered you a truce, Arthur responded immediately. His comment was a clear attempt to fan the homosexual issue and further divide us.

    Arfah is determined to make me pay because I didn’t invite him to join the team we once had, and I questioned one of his pet beliefs, and I rejected one of his comments, and my site became too popular, etc. Such is his devious, destructive nature.

    Regardless, I again offer you a truce. Over to you!


  3. ninglun

    January 7, 2007 at 7:54 am

    Thanks, Bruce. Just what I need 😉 . I had a quick look at your post (which is fine) and then the link to BLTC Research, to which my instant response is they are hardly worth engaging in “dialogue” with: cracked, I would say. They obviously don’t see the satire in Brave New World — mind you, that is one very ambivalent book, in my view. (Looking where that link leads I notice I inadvertently happened on BLTC last year in the context of coaching Brave New World/Blade Runner for the HSC.)

    Daniel, I thank you too, but if you look at the recent comment I made on Arthur’s blog where I somewhat ruefully reported the recent conflict you will see he said he was no longer interested, and that I think is where you too should leave it. I’m afraid I do not accept your interpretation of Arthur’s past or present actions, and would be dishonest if I said I did. My views on and experience of homosexuality are my own and always have been, and I still endorse much of what Arthur said on that, not because he said it but because as far as I am concerned what he said is true. I by no means agree with everything Arthur says, nor would he want me to, but I have every respect for his intellect and his blog, and find your obsession with him quite disturbing, a point I have made several times elsewhere. He simply does not have the significance you attribute to him, and that’s not to insult him but merely to state the obvious. Nor does he influence my opinions any more (or less) than any other thoughtful blogger.

    None of this is nearly as important as you seem to think, which was my point in this post. So my positive message to you is for you to concentrate on the solutions you see to the world problems that concern you, which I do often find are stimulating, be happy you have a blog to express those concerns on, and think a lot less about what people in Surry Hills, Perth, or Timbuktu might be saying or doing on their blogs.

    8 January 2007

    Unfortunately, the point of the above seems to have been lost on its primary audience. Well, I did try. Not my problem any more; never was really… Anyone demanding “loyalty” needs to be looked at carefully. There is a loyalty that does not preclude questioning or criticism; that I can handle. This comment did genuinely seek to be positive, without dishonesty or hypocrisy so far as I was able. Perhaps it failed. I stand by every word above; if that is “disloyalty”, so be it. As I said: not my problem.

    See ADVICE IS CHEAP – LOYALTY IS EXTINCT!. No, loyalty is not extinct, but it is mistaken loyalty to be asked to call black white or white black as some kind of loyalty test, and in all objectivity, the result of very careful reading, if loyalty in Daniel’s mind includes accepting his interpretations without question, particularly his ridiculous interpretation of Arthur, then that is a loyalty I would never demand here, and would not want to give. I’m afraid I do not accept your interpretation of Arthur’s past or present actions, and would be dishonest if I said I did is not disloyalty. It is honesty.

    My readers, including Daniel, may think what they like about this blog, Arthur’s blog, or any other blog or site they visit. I usually try to give readers space to do that by revealing sources through (perhaps overgenerous) linking, or I point them towards other relevant information, even warn them of my possible bias. I really think we all owe our readers that. Respect we can demand (earn?) perhaps, but unquestioning loyalty? That is to trespass too far upon another person’s integrity.

    See also Disloyal? Really? from November 2006.

    My solution is: 1) I will look at Daniel’s blog from time to time and 2) if there is something there that is really good I may refer you to it, but 3) I will studiously avoid quarreling with his posts, no matter what I think of them — there really is nothing to gain as disagreement will always be interpreted, it seems, as “disloyalty”.

  4. ninglun

    January 13, 2007 at 9:21 pm

    Major update 12-13 January 2006

    Having had my attention drawn to it, I will comment on the current (12 January 2006) sidebar note on Seeking Utopia. I think “guess who?” is very easy in this case.

    1. There is an N.S.W. blog which is all over Seeking Utopia (its most frequent visitor); which provides links to posts and comments from Seeking Utopia; yet, on most occasions, seeks to undermine Seeking Utopia. Could the person concerned please make up his mind?

    1. seeks to undermine Seeking Utopia. No. There is and has been much that is good on Seeking Utopia, one element of which is mentioned above. I am especially glad the site is open again. The recent post on teenage road accidents was excellent. What I have objected to has already been made very clear in earlier entries. Do a search. There is far more there than the topic really merits.

    2. I did say here (6 January), replying to a comment Daniel left below: My solution is: 1) I will look at Daniel’s blog from time to time and 2) if there is something there that is really good I may refer you to it, but 3) I will studiously avoid quarreling with his posts, no matter what I think of them — there really is nothing to gain as disagreement will always be interpreted, it seems, as “disloyalty”. Or “undermining”. If that needs more explanation, then I’m sorry, but that’s it, end of story. I would have thought it was very clear indeed: he doesn’t own my mind, and I don’t own his.

    3. Daniel has been one of my more regular visitors too, several times today. He is quite welcome. There is no problem this end whether he loves or hates what he sees here. My choices, my business; the same applies to him on his blog.

    Regular readers have by now fallen asleep. 😉 Sorry. (Doesn’t this look really naff compared with the rest of the post? Don’t worry; I won’t bother next time. It looked so naff I have moved this here.) Funny thing is, this is what he does when I actually say something nice about him! I think the best policy now will be to ignore him totally** for good or ill, though his blog really can be one of the better ones, if idiosyncratic.

    Arthur (and a few others) has become Daniel’s King Charles’s Head. I do not want Daniel to become mine.

    D read this addendum while I was still editing it! And I did check later: he read this and changed his side note, revealing in the process that he totally misses the point! If anyone has been “undermining” your blog, Daniel, I am afraid it has most often been you yourself by being such a control freak with your oppressive insistence on “loyalty”, a point you always evade one way or another.

    ** For the reading-challenged: “totally ignore” does not mean “never look”. It means “never say anything about”… And no posts on this blog after this date will mention Daniel or his blog ever again. But I will read it, as I said I would. It is after all in the public domain, and, as I have never denied, it can be good, and it can also have a certain morbid attractiveness. It is just not as magnificent a contribution to world peace and culture as he seems to think. It is just a blog (and so of course is this). Comparisons with Amnesty International or GetUp (or even Yawning Bread) expose it (and this blog) for what it is… There’s nothing wrong with that either; we all have something to offer. Why he cares whether I visit or not is beyond me, but much about Daniel is beyond quite a few people by now. Thus has he managed so often to stuff up what could have been a wonderful inclusive project. I don’t deny his heart is in the right place; it quite clearly is, and so long as you can steer round his cultish insistence on discipleship, or disagree with him very rarely, you’ll be fine. But question him, or, worse, condemn what he writes when you think it deserves condemnation or name it as bonkers when it is bonkers, and you’re cactus as far as he’s concerned. I still find that really sad, because it contradicts his purpose totally. He is VERY quick to mock and condemn when another blog does not conform to his particular vision of blogdom. I just got totally sick of that, and not just because I was on the receiving end of an especially self-righteous and ungracious example of it last month. That still totally sickens me. I did my best to get beyond that, as this post testifies, but it proved pointless. (13 January)

    Quick sequel

    I have at least achieved the removal of the latest version of the side-note (14 January) as he prefers not to name “pontificating poltroons” (or something like that — it was almost Shakespearean.) That’s what I liked about his aunt: she didn’t pontificate 😉 . I do at times, but I am a recovering pontificator. I know: I will change the category “rant” to “pontification” so all my readers can savour them one after the other if they so choose. Go to Daniel’s: he almost never pontificates, though he has been known to achieve the oracular on more than one occasion…

  5. ninglun

    January 19, 2007 at 6:32 pm

    A week later

    Yes, I have been looking. Some good things have gone up there, of course. However, so have some things only a twerp would think of, especially in the sententious side-notes, such as “English teachers can rarely write.” Tell that to John Marsden and Gary Crew! “Writers can rarely teach” would make as much sense. Then there was a classic on “some” blogs imitating Seeking Utopia. Not this one, baby; I do sometimes learn what not to do though…

    My being influenced by Daniel! Well, perhaps we all influence one another, though the influence of Daniel on my blog is minimal, except reactively. I have learned very little from him that I didn’t already know, or see somewhere else. That could be true here too, of course. He gets quite specific on my dependence on the fount of his wisdom today, and I have been moved to comment on his site because of this: Humans often say, “God bless you,” to those they care about. I sometimes do and I’m an atheist. In fact, I often say, “Bless you, Kneel,” when I visit a Sydney blog and make note of how hard the blog author (who I’ve christened “The Aged Page”) is trying to move with the times, to ‘get with it’ so to speak. Seeking Utopia has helped him immensely as I’m sure he would, if placed on a rack for twenty-four hours, admit!

    My comment: Daniel, what are you talking about? The things I have blogged lately are matters that I have been thinking about, and writing about, long before I ever knew your blog. Any reading of would confirm that.

    Any odds on that being published? No? We’ll see.

    Intelligent reply from the Dark Knight to the comment above.

    Daniel said…

    Your astute, accurate observations are always welcome here, Mary! Cheers.

    P.S. But comments from insincere opportunists aren’t.

    He is neither insincere nor opportunistic, of course, in his assertion that Seeking Utopia has helped me immensely, nor in refusing to publish my denial of that “fact”. If in something so trivial he is not to be relied upon, who would trust anything he says?

    Surprising sequel

    Sunday 21 January: Daniel has restored this blog to his blog roll; I have reciprocated. No doubt we will both continue doing what seems best to us.

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