BlogDrama Open Thread


Rather then consume other threads with debates over comments policies and authoritarian intolerance, let’s open one up here.

Scrutiny Hooligans has a comments policy that has worked really well for years. Since moving to WordPress, we’ve had 23,315 comments and 23,313 of those were approved. Our excellent Akismet Spam Filter protected the site from 24,262 spam comments. We’ve had only a few people breach the comments policy. We’ve got a sovereign admin who implements the policy.

For some, it’s not about the comments policy, it’s about how their ideas are received. I’ve seen some people claim that disagreement = intolerance. I’ve also seen folks wanting to have even the most absurd ideas treated as though they were Very Serious.

What are your thoughts?

Categories : Media, Open Thread


  1. shadmarsh says:

    I think that people like to complain.

  2. Dixiegirlz says:

    I think we’re in the wild and wooley new West, and it’s going to take a while to get our sea legs. Couple that with the anonymity of screen names hidden behind a computer screen, the you can get some really wild sh-t flying around. Complaining is a way to let off steam…and not murder people.

    So far I find this place is pretty tame.

    I still think the reasoning for barring Tim Peck is lame. He should be allowed back into the fold. Our country is better for opposing, yet polite points of view.

  3. Mister Smug says:

    I agree with Dixiegirlz on the point of Mr. Peck. Although he is a bit humorless, and I don’t agree with a lot of his politics, he seems to have been banned from here for no real good reason (according to this thread, which includes a series of e-mails with Gordon Smith) http://timpeck.blogspot.com/2010/09/scrutiny-hooligans.html.

    Bring Tim Back!

  4. Mister Smug says:

    P.S. With the above being said, maybe Tim should allow comments on his blog.

  5. Thunder Pig says:

    I saw Tim’s “apology“. While I don’t agree with him being banned, that was no apology…

    Davyne, what is with you and pseudonyms?

  6. Dixiegirlz says:

    WTF? Mr. Thunder Pig
    pot meet kettle

    Thurth is, I signed onto this forum under my email address Dixiegirlz@___mail,
    and have never changed it.

    I’m big on being southern, since my ancestors settled this area back in the mid 1700s.

  7. Mister Smug says:

    Thunderpig=Bobby Coggins

  8. Big Ivy says:

    For safety’s sake, I re-read the Comments Policy and find nothing offensive or disagreeable in the policy.

    I have no idea what the dust-up with or about Tim Peck might be so I’ve no opinion at all on the subject. I can only say that I find Scrutiny Hooligans informative and courteous.

  9. Dixiegirlz says:

    “I can only say that I find Scrutiny Hooligans informative and courteous.”
    Me too, BI
    And on occasion an opportunity to vent my spleen.

  10. shadmarsh says:

    Tim Peck likes to complain about being the recipient of ad hominem attacks, yet– in my very personal experience– he certainly engages in them on a seemingly regular basis. Luckily, I have no problem with ad hominem attacks.

    Also, as Mr. Jason Bugg pointed out an a different thread: SERIOUS BUSINESS!!!

  11. Deus Ex Machina says:

    Thunderpig=Bobby Coggins

    Heh. This reminds me of that running gag from The Right Stuff where Jeff Goldblum’s character runs down the hall into a cabinet meeting with a juicy piece of intelligence that everyone in the room already knows. (“It’s called Sputnik!!!” / “We know. Sit down.”)

    Anyone who doesn’t know by now that Bobby Coggins and Thunder Pig are one and the same hasn’t been paying attention.

  12. Management says:

    Okay, okay, okay, you know I love nothing more than coming home to this after working a twelve-hour shift at the day job.

    If asking people to abide by certain rules when leaving comments makes me a jack-booted Orwellian thug, then fine. I’m a jack-booted Orwellian thug.

    I have nothing more to say about this matter.


  13. Since this is more meta, I’ll move to this thread. On TP’s no. 17 comment on the 350 thread:

    A simple, “Yes, Jim…those people went overboard. I don’t condone the thought process that suggests it is okay to, even in jest, suggest that climate skeptics should be killed or otherwise silenced” would have been far more constructive than threatening to break the glass on the Ban Hammer Case.

    No TP, that’s not how it works. People here, or on any blog, should not feel compelled to respond to straw man comments by having to stipulate their fealty to moral standards of conduct. I don’t presume anyone here is harboring such sociopathic or genocidal desires, and nothing in their writings would lead me to that conclusion. That is the point of Godwin. These sorts of odious comparisons just take threads off topic and get people saying and thinking things about each other that they otherwise wouldn’t think or say if they were discussing in person. The comment policy is meant to foster civilized and topic related discussion. And it is an easy one to abide by.

  14. Mister Smug says:

    Yes, I realized that right after I hit “submit comment.” I requested deletion, but it apparently didn’t take.

  15. Tom Sullivan says:

    Who called dibs on drama queen?

  16. Matt says:

    Are we REALLY still discussing the comments policy & TP?

    If you really feel the need to read his pointless and offensive comments-look at the abundance on other local blogs/news media sites. I have yet to see one of his posts add something new to a discussion or wasn’t simply repeating the words of his master, the local tea brewer.

    I find the lack of TP comments on this blog refreshing.

    Now, can we discuss solar panels and the White House?

  17. Thunder Pig says:

    I guess I should post Dixie Girlz=Davyne Dial. And you’re right, someone would have to an ignoramus not to know my name…it’s only posted all over my Twitter Account, my blog and even my facebook page. It’s on the very first page of the search results for anyone who cares to Google it.

    Seriously, I want to know what problem Davyne, aka Dixie Girlz has with pseudonyms or anon commentary.

    As to my lack of comments on this blog this weekend, I’ve been busy.

    @Writ of Summons:

    Evidently, you did not follow the links I posted. Godwin himself said he planted the meme to counter what he saw were numerous and gratuitous Hitler or Nazi comparisons. Jim’s comment was not numerous (since…by Admin admission) it had never happened before, from him, or anyone else. (Save the numerous oh-too-subtle ones)

    It was not gratuitous because even I can see the natural similarity between a violent fantasy where people are given the magical power to be able to silence and destroy those who disagree with a point of view. For over a decade, in Germany, people were actually given the power to make people who disagreed disappear by informing the Gestapo, and presto! the people disappeared, and died, by the millions.

    Written communication is different from oral communications by both technologically and neurally.


    I find the lack of TP comments on this blog refreshing.

    I’ll bet you do. It’s too bad you don’t have a magic button to blow me up, ban me…or identify me as a political heretic, eh?

  18. er… Bobby, I thought he was talking about Tim Peck… which I totally agree with.

    you’re the Good TP of the West …. Timmy is the “I’m melting, I’m melting” bad TP of Asheville.

    Big dif, eh?

    L. Frank Baum had it much closer than Ann Ryn, eh?

  19. Dixiegirlz says:

    “Seriously, I want to know what problem Davyne, aka Dixiegirlz has with pseudonyms or anon commentary.”

    I believe you’re saying this in response to my statement above about the internets being like the wild and wooley west? It does strike me as a similar analogy, given the freewheeling manner of cyber place.

    Personally I don’t have that much against anonymous comments, I just mentioned the phenomenon. I do notice some folks have a tendency to say sh_t, in a manner they might never do in real life. If for no other reason than in real life, they could get cold cocked or sued, for making unfounded or wild statements. There is a certain false bravado that occurs when hidden behind a computer screen.

    As for my screen name…..like you, I believe some folks on this forum know Dixie is also Davyne. As I said, I signed up here using an email name…and I’ve just never changed the logon name.

  20. Thunder Pig says:


    In comment #13, writ referred to me as TP and I thought that Matt was following that same convention in comment #16. My bad if I was in error. I think the statement still works, if you substitute Tim Peck in that statement…perhaps even more so, since the button has been pushed on him, and he’s been shipped to the east.

    Tim is just getting a little bit of karma. I remember when he threw a friend off his now defunct Yahoo! Group for getting into a tiff with him over an anti-Christian video he linked. The same goes for the current leadership of the BCGOP. After the hell they gave previous leaders, I think they are getting a bit of their own medicine with interest. Can’t wait to see Erika, et al get theirs. It’ll be popcorn-worthy.

    If these people would have just left their egos at the door, things would have gone so much better. Most of the time, it is just better to admit political defeat, and put your shoulder to the task at hand with your political cousins instead of sniping at them from the peanut gallery, where you can only earn karmic points for the next go-around.


    I thought it was a pet peeve of yours because I’ve seen you post a few times on the Mtn X threads against screen names and anon commenting.

  21. Dixiegirlz says:

    “I thought it was a pet peeve of yours because I’ve seen you post a few times on the Mtn X threads against screen names and anon commenting.”

    It depends, if it’s valid, vs candy-ass digs and character assination. If I have something significant to say to someone, I tend to say it to their face…. backstabbing in real life and /or anonymous snarking is candy-assed…to me.

  22. @Bobby:

    I’ve been on the Internet since 1978 (ARPAnet then) and participated in hundreds of groups. The ONLY one I ever been thrown off of was the URTV Yahoogroup that Tim Peck ran illegally (he was using the name without permission).

    Even THIS blog tolerates me better and it is certainly NOT Liberty Hall where, to quote A. Bertram Chandler, one can “spit on the mat and call the cat a bastard.”

  23. Mister Smug says:

    An e-mail from Erika Franzi posted on Tim Peck’s blog:

    “Who ever actually believed it? That is, outside of that cadre of pseudonymous commenters who mindlessly tap out ad hominem attacks against all those with an original thought, yet crow about their love of diversity of thought. Diversity of thought for these guys means having two thoughts in one day. And remembering both of them.

    You know I like you a lot Gordon, but at the risk of further pissing you off, you really should take out the actual trash in the SH comment section, if there’s to be one. Tim raises the level of discourse. The usual commenters simply make the comment section palatable to other progressives. It has been my observation that you are somewhat above that sort of partisan hackery and nonsense. I hope I haven’t been wrong.”

    Didn’t Jane Q disable comments on her own blog because of certain commenters who didn’t toe the conservative line? Pot meet kettle.

  24. Dixiegirlz says:

    Local political bloggers who dis-allow comments seem a bit disingenuous in chastising SH for choosing the same option.

  25. Matt says:

    “I’ll bet you do. It’s too bad you don’t have a magic button to blow me up, ban me…or identify me as a political heretic, eh?”

    Wow–Bobby Thunder Pig. You’re sounding a lot like Nathan Ramsey. You don’t know me, but you make some big assumptions/accusations about me because of a few comments.

    I don’t have a problem with someone with a differing opinion. I enjoy a civil & intelligent discussion.

    Can you tell me how the often factually incorrect, mean-spirited comments of Tim Peck improve a discussion? Here’s a typical Peck comment:

    I find it very telling that conservative bloggers like Peck & Franzi don’t allow comments on their blogs but will gladly post their thoughts on liberal blogs. I suspect they don’t allow comments because they can’t handle opposing opinions or they don’t want anyone to point out factual errors in their postings. Franzi shut her comments off when readers pointed out problems with her postings.


    Ironically, Franzi quotes Milton to justify shutting off comments on her blog.

    “…the ability to explore the fullest range of ideas on a given issue was essential to any learning process and truth cannot be arrived upon unless all points of view are first considered…”

    Go figure…

  26. Matt says:

    @ Ralph

    “er… Bobby, I thought he was talking about Tim Peck…”

    You are correct. When I commmented I didn’t consider that “TP” could refer to someone else on this blog or a certain personal paper product…

  27. Thunder Pig,

    I did read your links and I’ve read that stuff before. I don’t know what your point is. We have a comment policy here at ScuHoo, and until it is changed, participants are reminded to abide by it. Godwin’s commentary on his own law does not change this simple fact. The reason, in my mind, the comment was violative was that the commenter could have discovered very quickly, as I did, that the comparison was inapt. Due to the policy, commenters should have a rock solid case before “going there” and this commenter fell very short of the mark.

    And speaking of this, I have to to wonder if you’ve gone Godwin. The “natural similarity” you find between the video and Nazi Germany is completely ridiculous. Not only in that not one person actually died as a result of this video, compared to millions, but in that the events which occurred upon release of the video show a well functioning marketplace of ideas where that appalling video was simply not welcome, and its producers were rightly criticized. The producers then redact the video and apologize. This sort of community moderation did not happen in Nazi Germany because it couldn’t have.

    And you, evidently, did not follow my last comment because there you go again!

    @Matt: I’ll bet you do. It’s too bad you don’t have a magic button to blow me up, ban me…or identify me as a political heretic, eh?

    A comment that shows you are deeply suspicious of anyone who disagrees with you. How do you get there? In a free market place of ideas, some folks are going to find your commentary (or mine for that matter) not to their general liking. You don’t need to ascribe horrendous motives on them. Sheesh!

    Finally, I will make sure not to refer to you with the abbreviated ‘TP’ so as not to cause confusion with the other TP. Please do the same and avoid creating confusion by referring to Gordon as Admin. I think you were referring to this at “since…by Admin Admission.” Gordon is not Admin. Admin is sovereign.


  28. Thunder Pig says:

    @Mr Smug:

    Erika did disable commenting, but not on the conservative line…it was the anti-libertarian comments that she didn’t care for, and couldn’t counter. She is, in my opinion, no conservative.


    LOL. I’ve been called TP (short for Thunder Pig) since before I was ten years old. It’s an old CB Handle I’ve gone by for over 30 years.

    Regarding his comment at AshVegas…I agree completely with that statement, and consider it a factual one. Leslie Boyd crossed an ethical line from being a reporter into advocacy…that the AC-T allowed her to report on events she organized and spoke at is unconscionable.

    If you wanted to find examples of his odious statements, you probably should have mined the Mtn X archives when they’ve covered the URTV controversy or Chad Nesbitt. But, then…his commentary was more or less in line with what Lefties were saying. 😉

    He hasn’t been the same since the RonPaulMadness™ took him.

    I agree with you 100% regarding Erika’s lapse into authortarianism and Tim’s blatent hypocrisy when it comes to commenting. He was a co-contributor on a group blog I ran. He left, citing something along the lines an unwillingness to take on those who challenged his ideas.

    @writ of summons:

    No, if Admin had any sense at all…he/she/it would have executed Godwin’s Law by shutting the thread immediately down. That is the crux of it. That is how it’s worked on UseNet and many other forums. When the ‘violation’ occurs, the thread is over. The continuation of a thread indicates that Godwin’s Law has not been invoked.

    ‘Godwin’s Law’ has been violated numerous times on this blog for years by several people using clever metaphors. Jim’s fault was that he didn’t think to buffer himself by making a comparison to something else that was based directly on the Nazi metaphor in order to insulate himself.

    Would you rather I made a Gary Mitchell (from Star Trek) comparison? It has the same connotations because that story itself was based in part on the Nazi metaphor, hidden in a Science Fiction setting to make the core message more palatable. Anyone who has read Joseph Campbell knows that there a certain number of stories that are always repackaged and retold…but then, I think you’re probably more of a post-structuralist, so you wouldn’t believe that.

    Isn’t this thread itself a discussion of the comment policy that has been violated, and therefore exempt from ‘Godwin’s Law’ for the purposes of discussion? It seems that if all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. 🙂

  29. Mister Smug says:

    Both Franzi and Peck always sound the ‘ad hominem personal attack’ alarm, yet in several posts, they’re the ones initiating the personal attacks. Again with the pot and kettle idiom.

  30. Matt says:

    @Thunder Pig

    TP wrote “Unethical fired reporter-turned-propagandist Leslie Boyd”

    1) Unethical? That’s a pretty strong condemnation for something that is within the journalistic code when a disclaimer is included (which the CT did) with the article. Should Bob Woodward (ABC News) not report on Iraq/veteran’s affairs because he sustained head injuries while reporting from the war zone?

    2) She/CT have stated that she was NOT fired.

    3) propagandist? By TP’s standard, you and I are propagandists. What ever happened to civility? Leslie is a grieving mother–couldn’t we at least give her a little space to vent?

  31. Matt says:

    @Thunder Pig

    The whole “ethics” violation mess was stirred up by Franzi, who has no journalism background nor does she have an understanding of how the media works.

    a) Her prefered media sources are the the National Enquirer & Fox news. Check her blog. Also note that Fox News was distinctly exempted from her media protest. She also prefers those local “newsletters” that call themselves newspapers but have little or no journalistic qualifications. That is, if they publish favorable stuff about her or her group.

    b) She thinks Letters to the Editors should be vetted by her before the newspaper publishes.

    c) She doesn’t understand that our local media are for profit companys. Unlike the national cable media, local media’s profits would decline if they lost viewers or readers because they leaned left or right.

    d) She doesn’t understand that the local news cannot give her an extended amounts of time to rant or that other people have equal right to be heard. TV news is by nature a sound-bite medium.

    Here’s what she had to say about the WLOS protest coverage in the link you provided: “it was truly shameful how one-sided a report they gave. Very disappointing given the amount of footage the videographer from WLOS shot and the lengthy interview that I gave him”.

    She just needs more attention. Quick, everyone write her, she’s opened up her blog for comments…

  32. Dixiegirlz says:

    Discussing Mr Peck in a disparaging manner is small, since he cannot come here and respond in his defense. We can do better.