Re: Spiritual and i/p
Sorry, Tom, but the Nazis were such outliers that using them as a parallel to almost anything is simply hysteria. It short-circuits any rational argument. That's the point Godwin was making. Let's see, AikiWeb is like Nazi Germany how?
The problem I have with all these arguments is that they confuse what people may do with what it is wise to do. Yes, you have every right, using the term colloquially, to show up here and spout off on subjects you know nothing about. People have been known to do that. And everyone else has the right to tell you what a fool you're making of yourself. If that doesn't make you happy, consider that you're the one who let yourself in for it.
As for the role of expertise... if we were talking mathematics, and kept insisting that the PhD mathematicians repeatedly walk novices through basic algebra, they'd have some right to be annoyed. And that's in a theoretical realm, where such an online review is possible.
Our topic is not entirely amenable to rational analysis, which is, Tom, where your argument breaks down. Most of what we're talking about can only be worked out on the mat. And even where it's not an IHTBF problem, much of it is simply about experience. If I'm told weightlifting is going to make my MA less effective, what rational basis am I going to argue from?
So yeah, argument and debate is fun. But when the chips are down, what really matters is who's got the goods--and who's willing to teach it. There's the folks I respect, and the folks who have the respect of the folks I respect. There are folks who respect the folks I respect, which indicates good taste and possibly that they are trying to achieve something similar in their abilities. And then there are a few who don't fit into that network but sound like rational people, so I'm inclined to consider their opinions seriously until given a reason not to.
All very messy and irrational. But in the end, that's what a community is.