Regarding Annett and Craven

ermadog at freenet.edmonton.ab.ca ermadog at freenet.edmonton.ab.ca
Fri Sep 7 22:05:29 MDT 2001



On Wed, 5 Sep 2001, Craven, Jim wrote:

>
> Louis, I'll respond to you but not to the vitriol of that sad, angry,
> pathetic and rather embittered creature whose post you are responding to.

It's all right for your side to heap vitriol on us, though. I wonder why?

> Yes we need alliances and yes we need to be respectful of the sensitivities
> of those with whom we are in alliance. But was that vitriol of Joan's
> respectful or conducive to dialogue and exchange?

But your vitriol and arrogance was respectfull?

> And then she wonders why I
> cannot respond "respectfully" when I get such vitriol, misrepresentation and
> outright racism; her post was the type of white arrogance, racism,
> chauvinism and jingoism that I was alluding to in describing the rank
> ignorance and arrogance of such self-proclaimed/identified "Marxists" on
> issues of self-determination

So you think I was lying when I said that I support the right of oppressed
peoples to self-determination?

> I will respectful to those who are respectful

You haven't been. You have been demanding a respect for aboriginal
spirituallity that you deny to the other forms of human understanding.
That's how this whole spate of cumshuwa-bashing began. Respect is a
two-way street.

> and I will viciously and
> relentlessly attack--especially self-proclaimed "Marxists"--who preach
> outright racism, jingoism, genocide-denial, snitch-jacketing

Where have I done any of this? Just cite my text and prove your
allegations.

> and other
> forms of rank arrogance,ignorance and outright wrecking on this or any other
> list. I will not respond to any of Joan's posts on oral tradition

Then I will accept your concession by default on this point.

Your ad hominem attack is a logical fallacy. If you need a refresher
course in logic, you can find a primer of logical fallacies over at the
Nizkor website. You might also want to read up on the fallacy of poisoning
the well.

> or
> anything else as she is obviously a sad creature in need of more than a dog
> to kick around and frankly there is just too much to do and in the scheme of
> things, that responding any more to this kind of pathogen is not justified
> in opportunity cost or other terms.
>
> Louis, I didn't start it. BTW the situation of the Mennonites (a bunch of
> in-bred, bigoted and evangelical fanatics in my opinion) has nothing to do
> with the situation of First Nations survival and self-determination; nothing
> at all, and such comparisons are but more racism, ignorance and arrogance.

My, my! Feeling a little ethno-centric today, are we? Why does it not
surprise me that you dismiss the sufferings of people not of your
community?

"Inbred", hm? That's not racist? One branch of this bunch of "inbreds"
here in Edmonton has succeeded in establishing a world renowned centre for
counselling victims of torture - but you wouldn't be interested in the
sufferings of others, would you?

Coincidentally, it was just a few days ago that I was suggesting to
Macdonald Stainsby that you might have more in common with Louis Farrakhan
than you let on. Perhaps I was right. Your knee-jerk reaction to my
remarks on familly values indicated that you share his taste for
patriarchal forms of power, and now you've shown us your ethno-centric
bigotry as well.

Let's just set the record straight, shall we? This whole thing began when
Hunter Grey became frustrated with his inability to prevail against reason
when it was pointed out to him that his data on parapsychology were
invalid. Furious, he turned on us with charges that we were
"superscillious" and "haughty". Then he invoked his version of aboriginal
spirituallity in a final desparate attempt to forestall any further
debate - assuming, I suppose, that we wouldn't dare question his religious
beliefs.

I recognized his ploy as the standard defence of religionists everywhere.
It is an argument based on the presupposition that those of us who refuse
to accept spirituallity are ipso facto incapable of addressing those areas
of human understanding that are the proprietary interest of religion. This
is usually followed by the further presupposition that the spiritually
superior person has some cosmic right to castigate our presumed lack of
understanding, hence the charges of "supersciliousness" and
"haughtiness". This kind of witchhunt may be appropriate to the House
Unamerican Committe and perhaps to shamans with delusions of grandeur;
but, it is not acceptable to me. He had no right whatsoever to make
assumptions about my character, nor did he have any right to demand that I
respect his spirituallity. As a lawyer, you really ought to be able to
distinguish between the right to freedom of expression and a demand to
respect the expression itself.

Such a demand requires that I controvert the natural relationship between
my empiric experience and my reflection upon that experience. Arguing from
natural law, I have characterized such a demand as perverse. I assure you,
I do not perform this perversion for anyone. You may stamp your feet and
whine all you want; but, I am not going to conjure up respect out of thin
air, not for you nor for anyone else.

Eventually, by example, I was able to persuade him that I am in fact
capable of addressing issues usually considered to be spiritual (I
discussed a few examples from comparative mythology), and he eventually
offered some half-hearted apology. Not wishing to pursue the topic, I
accepted this apology.

This is where Jim Farrakhan - oops! I meean Craven - jumped in. For
reasons of your own, you chose to resume the demand for respect for
aboriginal spirituality. Your remarks reflected an arrogant presumption of
spiritual superiority right from the start. After ranting on in several
posts, you acknowledged that aboriginal spirituallity was not in fact the
topic of discussion - you whined that I had not actually presented my
position on aboriginal spirituallity. Well, d'uh! If you'd been following
the discussion, you'd have known that this was not the topic of
discussion!

BTW you might want to get together with Hunter Grey and get your stories
straight as to what exactly aboriginal spirituallity actually is. He
postulated a specifically materialist dualism, which might possibly be
reconciled with Marxist dialectic-materialism should Hunter ever decide to
explicate his meaning here; whereas you have propounded an explicitly
spiritualistic dualism that can have no place in any materialist
philosophy.

In spite of your acknowledgement, you continued to misrepresent my
argument (can you say "false construction"? Of course you can! - you're a
lawyer! Do you know the legal consequences attendant upon the raising of
false construction upon the argument of another? Of course you can! - you
have pursued libel suits!), you continued to offer mischaracterization of
my argument - at one point, calling my understanding of aborigianl
spirituallity "ersatz". How can a non-existent position be considered
ersatz? That's quite a trick. You might also want to look up the logical
fallacy of strawperson argumentation.

My purpose in beginning that whole discussion was clear from the start. I
am concerned about the popularization of anti-science sentiment by
right-wing forces attempting to subvert the public school curriculum to
their Christian theology. They have learned from their success in the
anti-abortion fight - taking over local hospital boards - and have had
some success in taking over local school boards. Your willingness to
pander to anti-science sentiment is, under the circumstances, simply
reprehensible. Your willingness to aid and abet reactionary forces in this
matter is truly astounding.

I can only conclude that your current attacks on me are simply a result of
your wounded ego. I failed to be impressed by your superior spiritual
wisdom, and you have resorted to jihad in a manner typical of holy men
everywhere.

I don't see why our moderator would allow you to proselytize aboriginal
spirituallity when he has specifically said he would not allow
proselytization of Gaia spirituallity. However, if you wish to try to
defend your notion of dualism, go right ahead. I would love to see you try
to prove that this "other world" actually exists. Should be good for a
real chuckle. Maybe even lift me out of this "sadness" that you imagine is
my lot in life.

Joan Cameron

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