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May 04, 2006


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Ah would have thought as a putative filosophe u might have raised an objection to the status of Robinski's exclusive disjunction: is it correct to assert that Clay-face, whatever it is, is either a creature, OR a human, but not both? At the very least Robin needs to provide a axiomatic definition of "creature", distinguishing it from human.


"Creature" from create -- if you subscribe to Intelligent Design, then all things are created: humans, animal, same difference. Robin, clearly, is a darwinist, wondering if Clayface was a human being who changed, or was created as he is now.

Scientific advances since the sixties have let us acertain that Clayface 1 was a human being, probably an actor in a costume -- probably an old horror movie star driven mad by watching low-quality remakes of his masterworks appear. That sort of thing.


Would a creature still money? One who wanted to buy some things might.


Yes Zedd, it's odd that I didn't focus on the categorically-addled aspect of the dialogue. But obviously, when I said I liked the frame, I was saying that I thought it was a particularly nice picture of Robin's arm, and worthy of drawing to everyone's attention as such.

Doctor Slack

However, we could always interrogate the binary of creature/human through a deconstructive operation that consummates the radical instability of Barthes' concept of mythification.

(File under: Drunken Eclecticism.)

David Moles

I just love that "creature" is clearly a reified, well-defined concept in the DC world, or at least in Batman's world.

Adam Kotsko

Perhaps it would represent a step forward if more academics substituted Higher Eclecticism for Drunken Eclecticism.


Ignoring Paddy K-Co's sophistry du jour and Robins category error, one could view much of the super-hero comic book "villainization" as a type of suburban escape: the pulp-entertainment bidness has an astounding ability to replace the ordinary, to replace history. THat's not to suggest another re-run of historical materialism via marx, but perhaps historical materialism, post-marx (but not post-mod). The events of the last 90 years or so are hardly kitschy. (ah always preferred Sgt. Rock or, egads Gasoline Alley, ZIPPY, over Batman & S-man).

David Moles

Do I want to know in what way pulp entertainment replaces the ordinary and in what way it replaces history, or am I just asking for trouble?


Ah admit it would be difficult to confirm the actual cognitive process, but most American pod-people know far more about say Batman (and many other pop phenomena) than they do about say, the facts of 'Nam, Korea, WWII, the great depression, WWI, etc. etc. That's not to give carte blanche to Adorno's ideas of the Culture Industry, but one could hardly deny that much of American life is based on celebrity-infatuation--and super-heroes are sort of ersatz celebrities. And this pop-intoxication does prevent a certain type of, well, gravitas, methinks; of course there are snooty postmods who might argue that pop entertainment says something profound about American politics, but if pulp/manga/pop-art does do that, it does so negatively.

In effect, the comic book super-hero is generally a type of populist icon, and might be used by either populist reds or populist repugs; and the moral "code" of the super-hero comix is not so far from the standard cliche heroes and villains of say greek myth. Reiterations of Hercules, methinks; or perhaps Perseus (can you say Holy Intrepidness, Batman?) at least Hermes; and Hamlet/Horatio ..or Kirk/spock sort of parallels too--the superior rationalists dealing with the rabble. So there is reification of some sort, and one doesn't have to buy into marxism to perceive that. Other races/culture have their own super-hero icons of course (what were those old massive soivet Stalin/Lenin portraits if not super-hero icons).


Titanocracy, that's it. Not only super-heroes, but pro-athletes, soldiers, cowboys, rasslers, thugs of various types; men of action-- more Laertes than Hamlets--and the thugs get the goils, of course. All part of the irrational, populist spectacle--the soldier-Sergeant is the hero, but the crew of high-powered techies who built the planes, rockets, aircraft carriers, etc. are part of the geek squad. You see that same impulse in Batman or James Bond.


A Categorical Error?

David Moles

Actually, it's only the guys who design the planes and rockets and whatnot that are geeks, and in a very 50s, hornrims-and-sliderules kind if way. The guys who build them are pretty blue-collar.


Yes, but the engineers and designers are not so marketable. Ho-wood films, advertisers, comic books generally keep the propeller heads in the background--they are the suppport staff for the daring deeds of the super-hero, usually; the men of action, can-do guys, heroes (or anti-hero thugs) are flouted. The hive needs its sergeant heroes. Batman seems a bit more more an officer type, slightly aristocratic (as done by Keaton's Bruce Wayne sort of captures it); but still a can-do guy, like Capn' Kirk a bit. Kirk/Hamlet/Batman/Tommy Cruise: the Lieutenant hero; clowns like Willis, Chuck Norris, Eastwood: the yankee sergeant figure. Or Hans Solo: the rogue NCO pilot/helmsman--sheet goes back to Homer. Heroes affirm agency, volition, liberty: doesn't really matter what they do: save lives, fight villains/aliens, or kill 1000's, they are strong and FREE, with beaucoup gear--they may be scoundrel/pirates too-- pirate/buccaneer again the hero contrary. Batman might turn Hitler/Stalin and nuke a nation with a flick of his wrist and return to his boudoir with some lovely maiden; or Depp's Capn. Jack might off a few thousand hicks and come back to his ship and hump the lassies and everyone would cheer. Humans crave murder and fucking on a grand scale, man.


But of course most American "philosophers" or literary clowns, or for that matter bidness and engineering majors, generally never grasped, much less attended History 101. Nor do most American artists, pop or high-brow. For all their errors and hyper-conceptualizations, most Hegelians and marxists (pre-post maud at least) have a historical sense; the old fabians had the historical sense.


Dear Phrumious,

What do you make of the fact that you are apparently just writing the same comment, over and over and over? We at J&B do concede that your stylings - and even typography - constitute a distinctive signature of sorts. Still, you basically keep posting the same comment over and over and over and over and over. What's with that? You keep saying the same thing over and over and over. (What's with that?) Some people might say that repetition is unnecessary. Once you've said something once, if you don't have any additional arguments to add, you don't need to keep saying it over and over and over and over. On the other hand, people might say that my posts get a bit repetitive. And they'd have a point. Still, I don't think I come close to the repetitiveness of our friend Phrumious. Saying the same things over and over and over. It's not like we haven't noticed that you don't like Adam Kotsko. It's not like we haven't noticed that you like to mangle his name, to express your dislike. So why do it over and over and over and over? What's with that?

You are forever immortal on account of 'college squid' and 'liberal sockhopper' in that CT thread. "Even Ezra Pound would have called you a bitch." That's funny stuff. Still, in terms of the substance of your comments, you are saying the same thing over and over and over and over. Just sayin'.

I'm not saying that noticing that you keep saying the same things over and over and over and over constitutes a historical sense on my part, either. But it is a piece of microhistory, all the comments saying the same thing - mangling Adam Kotsko's name. In short, you're repeating yourself. What do you make of that?


Naw, ah just think as a professional academic you simply don't care for dissent as a rule; regardless of what form it takes. Yes, I have denounced Kostco, Kawfmann, and others around this lil' blog community from time to time; I find xtians to be generally deluded and occasionally dangerous irrationalists hangin' on to a bankrupt Weltanschauung--but then so are jews and muslims and pagans of whatever stripe; and I tend to dislike literary people as a rule. Nothin' personal really, tho' if you hold to any secular ideas based loosely or formally on analytical philosophy (say verification in its various forms), you would agree theists (and really aesthetes, too) have little ground to stand on.
Additionally, I dislike blog-moderation and feel it is proper to voice my opposition to moderation/censorship/deletion--perhaps you remember the old USENET chats where nothing was ever censored, even the most rude and obscene or violent posts--and there's still something to be said for that pure libertarian perspective.

Apart from the lightweight character issue, crimefighter (you think there is something inherently mistaken in terming a non-sequitur a "sophistry du jour?"), I am sort of puzzled on which point you are referring to. You are referring to my quasi- Adorno point regarding pop-entertainment and literature as reification and intoxication, or was it soldier-as-populist icon? Or is it my later point that most philosophers don't know squat about history. When attempting a critique it helps to substantiate some points. Whatevah. I'm pretty much finished posting here.

Adam Kotsko

Whatevah. I'm pretty much finished posting here.

My historical sense tells me otherwise! (And I don't just mean to the extent that this particular comment will be a self-fulfilling prophecy.)

Scott Eric Kaufman

John, I'm saddened that you focused on his mangling of Adam's name, when he mangles mine all the time too. I mean, Adam's not even on your team.

I sense our "friend" longs for the days of warboards yore. I wonder if he'd divulge his handle from those times. I was fairly well-known, and if he was a foe of substance, I'd at least recognize his handle. I could list my own, as well as those who "fought" beside me, but I have a feeling he's invented his recollections of the Before-Time, so I doubt he'll make himself any more accountable now than he has, well, anytime ever.

There really is nothing like a failed bully who won't even own up to his words...


Scott, you're right. He makes fun of your name as well, and that is just as repetitive the 10th time round.

Now you, Phrumious. "When attempting a critique it helps to substantiate some points." This may be such a utter non sequitar as to qualify as a sophistry du jour. (I couldn't say. Certainly it is a non sequitar.) You markedly favor the strident and declarative over the evidential and argumentative. One of the things that let's us know it's you, behind the newest name, is the signature manner in which you leave out the argument.

Since uttering P in a gonzo manner does not a proof of P make, you are up argument creek without a paddle most days of the week (incuding weekends). I think the historical record will bear me out on that. (This declarative exuberance is rather paradoxically balanced by your official championship of verificationist sobriety, but there is something so fundamentally HONEST about a stone drunk teetotaler that I am inclined to let it pass.) Of course, declaration is fine in comments. Very standard mode. What I was noting, above, was your strong tendency to repeat the same declarations, over and over. I didn't have in mind only your very most recent offerings, as you infer. My historical instincts are stronger than that.

Also, your notion that pure libertarianism requires one to let everyone do anything they like to a piece of your private property - i.e. your site - is, to say the least, radically revisionary, as notions of pure libertarianism go.

All the best, Phrumious, if indeed you decide to check out of our little intellectual salon scene, comics kitsch-drenched though it may be. I will always remember 'liberal sockhopper' with fondness. But as to all this pantomiming that you are on the side of argument ... pull the other one, it's got bells on. (Of all the silly kids!) We all know each other by now, more or less.


First, SEK, I am not your pal, and secondly you're not intellectually fit to make any cheesy character assessments, and that isn't what this is about, either. Your writing shows you to be an arrogant, manipulative, loud-mouthed, mostly irrational moron, Scott. Lots of people know that. But there's only a few who have the spine to point it out.

* * *

You markedly favor the strident and declarative over the evidential and argumentative

Blurbs regarding comic books and Orwell are not exactly conducive to argument, and this isn't a forum for APA-format research papers, or for logic really; nor is your heavily moderated rhetoric-fest on the Valve so suited to argument or rationality of any sort. It is you that is the strident one, and indeed the aesthete: and aesthetics generally not a matter of argument but strident opinion with little factual backing. Literary works are not case studies, having little to no value as data of any type (except perhaps as showing trivial consumer preferences), and comix, pop-art even less worth as data. So really what are you arguing about? Even when you do the Wittgensteinian thing, it is generally that of the later Witt.. and mostly "pragmatics", ordinary language grind and neither, as y'all say, synthetic/empirical nor analytic/axiomatic (or purely synthetic a posteriori, if you prefer Quine)--in the immortal words of Bush I, where's the beef?: I've never seen any empirical stuff around these blogs (the meme stuff and Moretti and evo. psych., has an empirical aspect, but that is rare), nor is there much if any chat of analytical knowledge--formal logic, set theory, and foundations of mathematics, etc. But one must admit you 'n the Bellester have excellent taste in manga.


I too like the frame, I like how effectively Batman is framing ClayFace, a poor creature, for the theft of this money that it doesn't even need. And Robin fell for it all so easily.

But it is obvious Robin doesn't want to face the truth. Where does Bruce get his money?

Scott Eric Kaufman

First, SEK, I am not your pal, and secondly you're not intellectually fit to make any cheesy character assessments...

I am, however, intellectually fit to recognze sarcastic quotation marks, unlike some people. (I won't name names, er, I won't name any of the names.)

Your writing shows you to be an arrogant, manipulative, loud-mouthed, mostly irrational moron, Scott. Lots of people know that.

I am arrogant, aren't I? What with always proclaiming myself so much smarter than everyone else, ostentatiously displaying--without ever bothering to prove--my belief that my knowledge is so superior to everyone else's...wait a minute, that's not me. That's you. Sorry, "pal," got us confused for a second there.

As for the "loud-mouthed" and "mostly irrational moron," well, you've got me there. The deaf tend to yell, bloggers tend to write, and I spend most of my days calling myself far worse than "mostly irrational moron"...

But there's only a few who have the spine to point it out.

'Cause it takes spine to snipe, anonymously, at graduate students? Sorry, "buddy," but I'm not buying it. You frequent the path of least resistance, no matter how much you fancy yourself the martyr.

But if this is your last gasp in these parts, let me be the first to tell you how much I'll miss your Einstoned rhetoric:


You haven't quite figured out that nobody is required to admire the LIT. business, especially the state-funded LIT. bidness, or those who "work" in the LIT. business. LIT. people fancy themselves as part of the research establishment, associating with doctors and scientists, but in effect they are ancien regime parasites and anachronisms, intentionally or not. As your posts/essay indicate, MLA style LIT. crit. is generally a type of dogma and manipulative discourse; and deletion and censorship goes along with MLA-style drivel and the priest-like character of LIT. frauds. In a true secular democracy, the state-university LIT. departments--along with ancient metaphysics and theology--would have most likely been voted out of bidness years ago. For all the cash doled out to UC LIT. slushbuckets, 100s' of computer labs could be built for one.


You know, the only thing I have against phrumious is that his posts are so god-damned boring. I guess that's largely John's point, too. Dissent, that's fine. But boring rambling, that we don't need.


Yr boring, chump. And also a control phreak missing the point.

Here's the issue in brief, however boring it may seem to ya: Holbo routinely proclaims himself an analytical philosopher. Fine. I have suggested to Herr Holbo that an essential aspect of analytical philosophy is verification: one could point to numerous AP texts--say Wittgenstein's Tractatus--and note that verification and a referential account of semantics/language is stressed (the Tract. is not solely about V, but Witt. did stress that the meaning of a word was the object/state of affairs it refers to). Other AP figures also uphold V. to some degree or modify it: CS Peirce, Ayers, Thomas Kuhn, Quine. Or Popperian falsification. Yeah LIT. types will say how boo-ring, or trite; but that's just it--LIT. types, postmauds, aesthetes DETEST verification of all types--. They want aesthetics, vague conceptualizations, irony, pop-art. And given that V. is part of empiricism and of the domain of science, anti-verificationism is anti-empiricism--and much of say a marxist and postmod agenda depends on a dort of dogmatic, anti-empiricist position, as does a theistic/royalist perspective. Blog visitors might say that's really not such an issue on this particular blog, but I suggest it is an issue everywhere. But maybe if you ask Holbo nicely he'll delete my posts.


Or more succinctly, if you are not dealing with facts, evidence, data, or you are not dealing with some sort of axiomatic logico-mathematical knowledge, what are you dealing with? A type of linguistic-aesthetic hedonism, it would seem. In fact writing which avoids facts is often preferred by aesthetes; entertainment, jokes, wit, etc. are praised (even some discussion of what humor is would be an improvement on the endless yukfest); and the dull empiricist or verificationist is the boor. That's cool, and one shouldn't be a zealot about V. and proof, propositional language all the time, but it's quite obvious surfing around the web that aesthetics/irony/unsubstantiated conceptualism sort of rules the roost. HyenaHouse.com

Scott Eric Kaufman

I know, I know, I don't talk about modus ponens enough for your taste either; but the idea that not talking about it demonstrates a hostility toward, or inability to understand, the most basic of logical arguments strikes me as highly irrational. As in, "you're a terrible advocate for the thing you advocate." Not that this will sink in, mind you, or that you'll respond to it any more than you did to my earlier refutation of your nonsense.

Oh wait, I forgot the computer labs. Yes, we should replace literature departments with computer labs. Why? Because the "brave" man who stands up to "powerful" graduate students doesn't like literature departments. And I am the arrogant one? (Not that this required demonstration.)

Funny how the censorship you so detest only happens literary blogs. No where else on the internet are community standards policed. And for the record, "genius," we've never deleted a single one of your posts which merely dissented; we've only deleted posts in which you dissented in language we consider unacceptably obscene. Why you consider this particular to the literary profession is, well, how about we aim for a little verification now? Next time you see a trucker at a rest stop, walk up to him, call him a "buttphag" and then inform us all what happened.

Community standards aren't limited to the literature profession, as anyone who could actually think rationally instead of merely proclaiming to do so would know. For someone of such self-proclaimed brilliance, you regularly offer an astounding amount of evidence to the contrary.

The irony, "friend," that you strive so hard to miss is that the majority of the Valve-affiliated folk you "criticize" don't actually detest verification in the least. They recognize the limits of their methods and aim to describe what they observe as accurately as they possibly can. Where you got any idea otherwise—and here your poor comprehension skills, foremost among them your inability to grasp nuance, come to the fore—baffles anyone who can read a sentence. Point me to the Marxists who post on the Valve, or to those who uncritically accept tenets of postmodern thought. They're not there. They don't exist. Part of the reason you bore us is that your comments bear no relation to the posts to which they're appended.

And who demanded you admire literature departments? Methinks you have a wee persecution complex...in fact, meknows you do.


Well, you've just made my point for me. Very, very boring. Also, pretty stupid as to analytic philosophy. But, that's forgivable. Boring isn't. I neither know nor care what your point is (and since I'm not trying to control anything, I suppose I'm not a control freak.) My point was that your posts are boring boring boring.


Most petty aesthete byitches love to chant "boring", since they don't know what a propositional account of language consists of, what referential semantics consists of, what verification is.

Kaufmanm the clown, you're obviously not a graduate student in any discipline deserving of respect ( a Phd in rhetoric and comma corrections? hah), and you're not in charge of sheet, tho' you like to assume you are. Yr another comma-correcting fraud on the state dole, really. Heh heh. I am a grad student as well, and were I to lower myself to your level and do the little LIT-scholar pp contest that vermin such as you engage in, my grades, scores, writings, foreign language skills, GREs would prove to be at least as strong as yours (ah know now ah'll get some lame predictable macho mousestein response). Anyways, LIT , like theology, lacks, as that ol' boor Descartes suggested in regards to intellecual matters, clear and distinct ideas. Thus, it's mere scholarship, and not only mere scholarship, but mere scholarship paid for by the state.

Yr a pathetic mockery of real lit. as well, and I doubt you know The Red and the Black, much less the Red Badge of COurage, from like your Ethel Merman and Milton Berle CDs.

Scott Eric Kaufman

The reason you never make the arguments you claim mastery over is that you become such a ridiculously easy target when you do. To wit:

you're not in charge of sheet, tho' you like to assume you are

When did I ever suggest that I was? What evidence do you that I assume myself to be? I can provide evidence that I am, in part, responsible for comment moderation on the Valve. I'm also in charge of comments on my personal site. Outside of that, I'd love to see you demonstrate that I have stated or believe myself to be in charge of anything which I am not, in fact, in charge of. Evidence is your thing, no?

I am a grad student as well

You were a graduate student, but, by your own admission, couldn't hack it. Keep your lies straight, "friend."

were I to lower myself to your level and do the little LIT-scholar pp contest that vermin such as you engage in, my grades, scores, writings, foreign language skills, GREs would prove to be at least as strong as yours

"Were [you] to?" Dude, you act like no one remembers what you do—the thing is, just because you're in a state which makes it difficult to remember what you've said (even after it's been deleted) doesn't mean the rest of us are. We, for example, remember how you challenged everyone to post their GRE scores. I even remember you once characterizing your performance on the GRE as "decent." That's the same place you indicate that you know Spanish and a little French. So if by "lame macho mousestein" response, you mean "a direct recitation of facts previously stated, from your own mouth, no less," than you'll have what you expected.

You covet facts but produce none; you want responsibility but shoulder none; you want accountability but insist on having none. And to top it all off, you make the most stunningly refutable claims, such as:

I doubt you know The Red and the Black, much less the Red Badge of Courage

I've never read nor written on either Stendhal or Crane, despite the fact that I'm working on evolutionary theory and naturalism in American literature, and despite the fact that American literary naturalism descends from a French tradition. You're positively Volokh-esque in your "informed" and "well-reasoned" statements.


Chumpmann, I have an MA, in fact magna cum laude, but don't make a big deal of it, and continue to take grad. courses from time to time, pal. And you're making up sheet again, like the little J. Edgar-- Raymond BUrr-wannabe you really izz. You don't have any facts, clown; just like you don't have any arguments, since you don't know what arguments are. And ah strongly doubt you know Osmosis from Ozymandiass.

Scott Eric Kaufman

An excellent, factual rebuttal. I know you have an MA, and I know where it's from, but you do make a big deal of it, if only by virtue of mentioning it here with an off-hand "magna cum laude." (I didn't even realize that matters with MA, but that shows you what I know.) And I know you continue to take the odd graduate level linguistics class, but that doesn't make you a graduate student. I have the facts, many of them from your own mouth, and some from others. More to the point, for someone who claims to know what arguments are, you're doing a terrible job of addressing any of the ones I've made above. You know, the ones in which I present a fact, such as "you boast about your GRE scores when they are, by your own admission, merely 'decent.'" That's a fact, as evidenced by its appearance earlier in this very thread. Now, you can refute the evidentiary basis of that fact by, say, discrediting its origin—and don't think I wouldn't love to see you impugn your own authority—but the insistence that I don't have the facts I clearly do is not, in itself, an argument. It's an insistence. (And an increasingly pathetic one.)

And when you make statements of fact, notice the way in which I refute them with contradictory evidence? You claim I've never read X, I counter-claim that not only have I read X, I've written on it. Whereas when I say "You said X above," you reply, "You have no facts" despite said facts being right there for anyone who can scroll to see. This isn't an impressive performance, my "friend."

I've left you bloody in a corner, dick in hand, thumb up ass, mouthing the word "Mother" as if you still meant something to her. So please, take the toys you don't even know how to play with and kindly disappear.

Scott Eric Kaufman

[That last bit, by the by, was for any of you old warboarders out there. When dealing with children, one often waxes nostalgic about one's own childhood. Hence, the above.]


This is kind of funny.


You didn't do shit, loudmouth: you're a harmless lapdog, a bag of hick-trash regardless of yr Miltie Berle idiocies. You're a simpering little prosecutor-wannabe incapable of wit or humor, a complete mockery of lit. from Shakespeare to Salinger: a half-pint Gloria Allred or Alan Dershowitz, sans legal cred.

You're in the wrong bidness, scheisse ; ah suggest you withdraw from the belle-lettres racket and try to get yr paralegal cert. Phuck u, bureaucrat garbage.


Phrumious, we're thinking about bringing out a volume of your wit & wisdom, which certainly exceeds our own. Actually, I was thinking that it might be fun to bring it out on a series of Cafe Press mugs and T-shirts and thong underwear. (I think that Crooked Timber-brand thong underwear, emblazoned with "even Ezra Pound would have called you a bitch" would sell like hotcakes.) I think that an Acephalous coffee mug that read "... hick-trash regardless of yr Milton Berle idiocies" would perk you up in the morning. I myself want to own a 'college squid' t-shirt. I'm sure PZ Myers will buy one.

Would you mind? (It's sort of your work I am talking about marketing, but it is just short quotes, and you did publish them at our sites, and you are sort of a public figure. Maybe we could donate the proceeds to the EFF?)


Oh, and I think we should call the whole Cafe Press series 'in praise of reasonable argument and verification'.


A far more entertaining collection would be like "Scott Klownmann recites your favorite selections of Rod McKuen, Edna Ferber & Milton Berle" with some kosher kazoo overdubs. Or "Kazoomuzak: Scott Klowmmann on Da Klassix." And put it together with like the "JHolbo: An Analytical Philosopher-lite reads Batman, Superman, and other Superhero Comix" for double CD set. Sehr Schoen. As he is to Shakespeare, you are to Kant and Co.: Sort of like the extra-large font, ebonics versions of the Deep Thinkers, Inc. Hah.


Or Better, a sort of series: Holbo's "Philosophy for Ebonics Students, comma correctors, and Bible College Students."

Imagine like the Tractatus really dumbed down, in easy-to-read print, so like even your pals on the Weblog or the Valve, or Crooked Timber could get it.

AH PIT-CHUR BE AH FACT, y'all. Or somethin' of the sort.


Goodness, the latest soap-bottle ramblings come in peppermint AND lavender! Who knew?

Scott Eric Kaufman

You didn't do shit, loudmouth: you're a harmless lapdog, a bag of hick-trash regardless of yr Miltie Berle idiocies. You're a simpering little prosecutor-wannabe incapable of wit or humor, a complete mockery of lit. from Shakespeare to Salinger: a half-pint Gloria Allred or Alan Dershowitz, sans legal cred.

You're in the wrong bidness, scheisse ; ah suggest you withdraw from the belle-lettres racket and try to get yr paralegal cert. Phuck u, bureaucrat garbage.

What template did you pull this from? 3133+ Insults for Beginners? The whole idea of an insult, "pal," is that it should be specific, damaging to the individual as an individual, not some randomly generated, faux-clever crap which could apply to anyone. If you want to insult me, take some of what I've said, particular details of my life, and use them against me. You seem to be suffering some performance anxiety here; almost as if, when pressed to present your beloved facts and arguments, their substance and form escape you and you turn to pure but generalized invective.

Who taught you how to argue like that? Surely not What's His Name, the "famous" philosopher you name drop at least once a month. Were I to contact him, would he remember you at all? Or perhaps only as the promising student who, alas! spent too much time "venting narcissistically" on the Internet?

See how specific my insult was there? See how I took your own words and presented them in an unflattering context? That's what you should do instead of dutifully copying some boilerplate nonsense you wasted $19.99 on:

Page 49: Inform a man or woman of Jewish descent that he or she does not own a license to practice law in the state in which they currently reside. Jews hate that. If that fails, refer to the man as a slang derivation of the female genetalia and compare him to a star of stage and screen from Hollywood's Golden Age. His Jewish constitution will render him unable to stomach these insults, but have no fear, as The Chosen People are tiny and untrained in the art of fisticuffs, whereas you can bench 400 lbs. and have hands which state law requires you register as "lethal weapons."

Such imprecise insultage (esp. when coupled with unproven bravado) is surely beneath someone of your towering intellect and mastery of argument. Why not string together a few of the stupid things I've said—Lord knows, there are enough of them—and see whether the results bother me as much as mine so clearly bother you.

Scott Eric Kaufman

Nevermind, I take it all back. After his latest two posts, I cannot deny how really fun that cat is. I mean, that cat's his own meow, which is itself the cat's meow. How can we hope to top that?


So I'll take that as a resounding yes, Phrumious. I can proceed with the Cafe Press project as planned?


Ah'm not anti-semitic per se--tho' with philistines and Moe-Howard clones such as yourself I make exceptions.

Phuck yr little J-Edgar spam-game, too, bozostein. Yr a human reject, a ham-fisted, talentless, ineloquent, literal-minded male-shrew: as you prove more convincingly with each yip and yap. Scottie the LIT. Poodle! Roll over n play MORT, Scottie the LIT. Poodle! He's not a doctor, but plays one online. Put on yr big shoes and a big red nose and maybe someone would take you seriously. Tying animal balloons! Now There's how you supplement yr meagre spelling teacher salary.


Oooh, "a ham-fisted, talentless, ineloquent, literal-minded male-shrew". Add that to the list.

Scott Eric Kaufman

You just don't learn, do you? You need to be specific. All this general nonsense makes you sound like, well, a terrible advocate for analytic philosophy. You never practice it, don't seem to know it that well, and are incapable of producing anything someone untrained in the analytic tradition would recognize as an argument. Instead it's all this blather which, were it to issue from the mouth of a fourth-grader, would get him laughed off the playground. Never would he get to spend Five Minutes in Heaven with the strapping Sally Milquetoast.

See how less effective my general insult was from the specific charges I detonated earlier? Probably not. This is why no one will take you any more seriously as a provocateur than they do as a human being, "bud."

(And because I'm dying to know: how many other people did you inform today of your possession of a Master of Arts in Literature. Did you tell 'em all you were magna cum laude? How did that buxom, attractive cashier at the 7-11 respond? Did she nod apathetically and ring up the case of Coors without making any further eye contact?)

Scott Eric Kaufman

Oooh, "a ham-fisted, talentless, ineloquent, literal-minded male-shrew". Add that to the list.

If you're going to attack someone for being ineloquent, shouldn't you, I don't know, do so eloquently?


Clown, you don't know what effective writing is either, as your lame and pretentious site indicates. Don't even try the great gonzo-y New Journalist act with me; I know all about New Journalism and non-fiction writing, and I've worked in newsrooms and in editing pits. You don't know phuck squat about authentic writing or thought, bug. Even the reds of LongSunday put you to shame.

belle waring

yeah, cala, and did you know dr. bronner's has hemp oil now? also,they started printing the "all-one-quine-faith" stuff directly onto the bottle, thereby both saving trees and making it possible to continue to read the wisdom even after that tall bottle of peppermint has been in the shower for six months. (it used to get kind of dog-eared after a while.) but just remember: dilute, dilute, dilute!!

Scott Eric Kaufman

Evidence, phrumious, we require evidence, without which there can be no verification. And please, you spent time in editing pits? Doing what? Ruining perfectly good prose with silly idiosyncratic spellings copped from Ezra Pound? This proves you superior how?

Wait, it proves nothing, because you've argued nothing, only asserted. Why I have to be the one to inform the Master of Literature All Analytic Stuffs of this, I don't know.

For the record, there's no need to italicize "phuck squat" if you think your "novel" spelling already draws attention to your "insult"'s "effectiveness." Truth be told, the double emphasis makes it seem like you're trying far too hard to accomplish what you so manifestly fail to. (And at such a remarkably consistent rate, too!)

W. Kiernan

did you know dr. bronner's has hemp oil now?

Great; I wash my hair and then proceed to fail the piss test.


You've proved nothing here, Scottski the LIT. poodle; as you prove nothing on a day to day basis. You don't give any spelling lessons here, stooge; this ain't your ebonics class, bozo. How could you prove anything anyways, when you don't know phuck squat about any particular topic, 'cept maybe spelling, kazoo playin' and comma correction? In technical terms, you're a useless bag of shit, like 90% of LIT. clowns. Now write that up on the board 10,000 times.

Scott Eric Kaufman

Blah blah blah. And I had such high hopes for you, "anonymous" "friend" o' mine. You're not even fit to voice the worth "prove" if your output here is any indication. It should be banished from your vocabulary, since you present neither the "facts" to prove anything nor the "arguments" with which you would if you did. It's a sad show, frankly. Someone of your intellectual mettle should be able to crush a poor aspiring literary scholar like myself, and yet here you are, being trounced and having to swing wild and uncontrolled.

If I'm a clown, why can't you pop a single one of my balloon animals? If I'm but a poodle, how is it I'm arguing instead of panting circles around you? Throw a ball and I'll fetch it, yet I'm still embarrassing you on a quarter-hourly basis. Your performance here speaks poorly of you, and to be honest, since I know John's an analytic too, I'm starting to think less of him too. I mean, if you and he belong to the same "grand" tradition, it ain't that grand. Sorry John, but I gots to call 'em as I sees 'em...


Oh shocking! the clown ebonics-teacher maneuver 101: "you're proving nothing." Unfortunately, Ebonics-boy, that's the way it is in the LIT. Clown game: there's not much to prove about lit., or about the clowns who teach LIT. You'll have to take my word for it; you are, indeed, a clown, and not an especially amusing or witty one at that. And not only that, but an insufferably humorless whining bitch sucking up bandwidth with your verbal pollution. Now Ah'm presently finished tossing you around like the cheap hick ragdoll you izz; but I suspect more of your syntactic excretions will have gathered here in a few hours.

Scott Eric Kaufman

Hours? Pshaw! I'm still here, dissertating into the night. I'm sorry, but I think if we took a poll, old school BBS-style, I doubt anyone would vote me the whining one. Or the clown. Then again, who knows, maybe there's someone, somewhere out there, who will "take your word for it." I mean, you've earned the benefit of the doubt, what with your repeated, stellar performances...

(By the way, you do understand I'm toying with you, no? Pulling your strings, manipulating your responses, then choking on my Lit. Bidness MRE every time I read another of your "responses." Can you not see the irony, "chum"? Can you not see the disconnect between what you espouse and what you produce? Because your cluelessness is this close to acquiring you a fanclub. So, accept that you've been humiliated and slink away, or continue popping your head about these fine environs...but do so with the knowledge that everyone's humoring you. That everyone knows of your instabilities, knows of your history, and "listens" to you with a click of the scroll-bar and not a twinge of regret. Miss what our "friend" says? Pffft. Right after we lament missing "The View" today...)


Prattle on clown, make yr cheesy lil' snitch threats, the bubblegum ad populus: you the one that lost, years ago: any man who actually attempts to get a PhD in English Schoolmarming isn't a man anyways. You're no man: you a desperate, neurotic hack. And your cheap attempts at a network hack or sniff don't count for shit, either; you have nothing on me--but make some more J-Edgar like accusations, schweine.

Yr shit, lIke the shit that bred ya. Your dissertation's shit as well, ebonics boy. Now, everybody knows that, or will.


IN other word, STFU, byaitch. Got dat yet, varsitystein?

Scott Eric Kaufman

I suppose I should bow down before you, what with your ability to read something that ain't yet been written. No wonder you're the celebrated analytic philosopher at the most prestigious school of analytic philoso...oh, you're not? Sorry, "pal," didn't mean to get your hopes up.

By the way, what's with the sudden appeal to populism? I mean, do you really think "everyone" knows me for the fraud I so obviously am? I mean, only 600 or so folks read me daily, so unless they're telling everyone they know about my intellectual fraudulence, I think the number of thems "in the know" has got to be pretty small.

Oh, and I love your ignorant accusations about my sleuthing. It's almost like you've missed the fact I've posted links to sites in which you admit that which I "accuse" you of. If you weren't so much smarter than me, I'd assume this was some kind of ploy, you know, to trap me into confessing something which ain't freely available to anyone with access to Google. Pffft.

Admit it, punk, you know you've been bested. You know you've been humiliated yet again by someone you, in whatever altered state you're in tonight, mistakenly believe yourself infinitely superior to. The worst anyone will think of me is that I'm picking on too easy and vulnerable a target. The best anyone will think of you is that you tried really Really REALLY hard, but were outgunned, outclassed, and too stupid to realize it in time put a stopper in that yap o' yours and minimize the damage.

[And with this I end this war, and put it to the judges to declare a victor. Will it be He Who Goes By Many Names But Whose Stupidity Shines Through Them All, or Yours Truly, who humbly offers his head on the block if you think He Who Doesn't Even Deserve a Clever Backronym won the contest.]


Since my deliriously on-topic late comment in a previous thread lasted about five seconds in the recent comments sidebar, I link it here.

Scott Eric Kaufman

IN other word, STFU, byaitch. Got dat yet, varsitystein?

Egads! 'Tis The Lethal Rebuttal by He Who Is The Master of All Things Analytic! How can I look in the mirror tomorrow with the knowledge that such a decisive rebuke has been issued? Does someone have a sword handy? No? How about a butter knife? If I fall on it a few hundred times it ought to do the trick...


Outclassed. . Whoa! Spoken like the greasy, bubblegummy schoolmarm you izz, clown. Rilly I was wrong: yr not jus' a Moe Howard or Ethel Merman clone: more like Frankie Avalon meets Fonzie! Scott Fonzmann, another two-bit LIT. opportunist, like most state literatteurs.


So AM I allowed to do the Cafe Press thing, or are you going to get all J. Edgar and tell me that I can't, Phrumious or dot-dot or whatever your name is? I want to sell T-shirts and coffee mugs and, possibly, Dr. Bronner's soap with personalized, closely-printed labels. And thong underwear. I assume you don't mind, because your libertarianism would deem any refusal to let me publish your words as censorship, correct?


Stand back, gentlemen! This creature is The Ellipsis, and it's going back to Arkham - where it will no longer menace the innocent with its idiosyncratic spelling and punctuation!


No, YOU stand back, caped crusader. You're good, but I'll pay more to see The Ellipsis duke it out with an Ethel Merman clone, before being dragged to Arkham giggling madly. What was it that Hendrix sang? "1983 (A Merman I will turn to be.)" I'm not sure when Scott was born but that might be close enough for government work, as prophecy goes. Hendrix predicted the birth of Scott Kaufman! He can breath water and he runs on ethel so he's doubly hybrid.


Doc Comedy, ah suggest you plagiarize someone else. Or perhaps team up with some of the deep philosophical minds that visit here and the Valve and put together like your anthology of DC super-hero comix, together with "Ordinary Language Philosophy-lite for Ebonics students."

Actually Holbo, some of us out in blogland are waiting to see you post one real analytical philosophy essay: say, in regards to propositional accounts of language. Or here's one: does the mere existence of modality and contingency give rise to an ontology which would seem to refute Quine's radical empiricism? But I suspect you've got more manga in store. If you can't be a philosopher, why, you can always produce blog-kitsch.

AS Tarentino once said, "I get, I give."


Cafe Press? You're ok with that? Am I right or am I right? (Or am I right?)

By "I get, I give" you mean you give permission, right? And I get to make the stuff. No J. Edgar nonsense - no censoring of my coffee mug or t-shirt, such as would be deplored by the USENET crowd of yore?

It is so clear that you are committed to permitting this, by your previous - er, argument-like structures - that this is just a formality, really.


You find this amusing, or you have some real point to make. Let's put your name on some shiet too. Oh that's right: Long Sunday already started that: Holboiana! Your resentment is showing again (recall whatyour Fratboy-in-Chief Nietzsche said about resentment?)

AS a matter of fact, one has a presumed right to the writing one produces online, and to publish without consent is an intellectual property theft or something of the sort; and I don't consent to you or anyone else using my writing for financial purposes. But I think you have a UC degree, right? So I imagine plagiarism is sort of de rigeur for ya.

But back to the real topic which you've ducked for years: are there any good grounds for objecting to Quinean radical empiricism, whether on grounds of analyticity, a prioriness, modality, definitions, "intuitions"?

Iron Lungfish

While I'd definitely buy a "college squid" shirt, I think it'd look better as white text on black (which, as far as I know, Cafepress doesn't do). How about a random Troll of Sorrow comment generator? I think we have enough material to make it very doable.

peter ramus

Dang. It looks like the Café Press plan is no-go. I was so hoping for the chance to order my own personalized black T with the words "Like the wannabe-cheka member you izz!!!!1!" in some really snarly typeface, with, you know, random splotches of paint exploding off the lettering and all.

Iron Lungfish

By the way, for simplicity's sake I hereby reveal myself to be Phrumious/818/Jake/etc., and give John express permission to license any and all words of wisdom I've produced in such capacity (don't bother checking my IP; you'll find that I have the eccentric tendency to work on multiple computers at once, possibly across multiple states, nations and time zones). To prove that I am who I say I am, I will now proceed to randomly spew incomprehensible invective through my alter ego.

Doctor Slack

Quoth the ToS: (recall whatyour Fratboy-in-Chief Nietzsche said about resentment?)

You know it's "ressentiment," right?

Sure you do.


Yeah invective, Varsity-boi. Hey frat boys, lie some more, crack the little National Lampoon-lite jokes: that's your style, frauds. Yr cheap salesmen mgmt. clowns, like yr daddies! Really satanic irrationalists in any traditional or Kantian interpretation, but not even a decent, entertaining satanist like say Baudelaire or Crowley or someone. Got dat Iron L-fish? I don't consent to shit btw, but if I discover that you use any of my writings without my consent for bidness purposes you might catch a case, byaitch.

And btw Nietzsche does use the french "ressentiment", which is in English, "resentment." Perhaps you, Doc, great gallic scholar, think there is some profound difference? Either frenchy or Anglo, I doubt you understand what FN's point was.


Oui, Doc, je veux apprendre, le "je ne sais QWAH," le differance entre les utilisations françaises et anglaises du « ressentiment » . Le Bon Mot, Doc! Seal voo play

Doctor Slack

And btw Nietzsche does use the french "ressentiment", which is in English, "resentment."

You mean you didn't know that Nietzsche's systematic theorization of resentment is specifically termed "ressentiment" in English-language scholarship, precisely because of its difference from the general usage of "resentment"?


No, that's how some postmods use it. Besides, I am not a Nietzschean: Fritz is probably one of yr role models given his status as pep rally coach. Ah may be mistaken, but I thought you were above all that postmaud folderol, or are you know hangin' with Derrida and Co, fraud? You don't know shieet about philosophy, Radio Shack, take it from moi.

Doctor Memory

Really, the question I have here is: what on earth sort of vocal tone is Pherozoid's idiosyncratic text styling tyring to indicate?

It's like watching an attention-span challenged 13-year-old try to affect badassedness by copping the tone of every MTV antihero he's ever seen...at once! You've got your drawled Haggardesque cornpone "ah says" and "my boys", you've got your plosive "puta" (and pidgeon spanglish) from Cypress Hill videos, your sneering "byaitchs" straight from Snoop, and of course the good old-fashioned Sydney Vicious "phuck you" -- all rolled into a single incomprehensible mess of malapropisms and misplaced italics a la John Grubor.

Kitsch indeed.

Doctor Slack

No, that's how some postmods use it.



ya got that raht: ah'm not opposed to using a dialect and phonetic spellings, some slang, sorta like say S. Crane or Twain used dialect. Joyce used dialects. Dash Hammett. I am quite capable of writing in the Queen's English but this ain't yr spelling class, izz it. GB Shaw as well used alternative spellings. SO? THat offends thee, puto? You don't know what language izz either. Like HOlbo, Klaufmann, Doc Slack, yr another cheap fratboy fraud.


Laughing at your own inability to understand resentment, Doc Radio Shack? I think you ought to stick to the jap porno-manga, Doc, and the Tandy Corp. training manuals. Like the clown who runs this site, you don't know fuck about philosophy, varsity-days or not, take it from moi.

Doctor Slack

Twain used dialect. Joyce used dialects.

Difference between them and you is they were good at it.


Difference is yr a bag of confused shit, like yr mama. Got dat doc? U don't know shit about my writing. Step out in the street, yeah, Doc? Yr a dirty lil shitphucker like yr CT pals: andyr....mommy! Stick to the jap manga, j/o.

Iron Lungfish

Good sirs, I must apologize for these latest outbursts, which I assure you are quite beyond my means to control. The doctors say they result from a rare form of Tourette's in combination with advanced syphilis, which has steadily eaten away at my feverish and weary brain lo these many years. I... I feel another attack coming on... nurse! Nurse, come quickly! Stop me before I bastardize the language again!


Ooo bubblegummy fratboys now upholding some schoolmarm standards! Yr the peasant, frat boy. Je comprends plus français et l'Espagnol que toi, aussi, chiennes .

Maybe ya oughtta like log-on to some jap sites and see if the yakuza might hire ya

Iron Lungfish

It strikes again! I die! I die!


Yr another two-bit LIT. opportunist, like most state literatteurs. I'll wager, apart from all yr fancy chatterin', you could not write this:

Spontaneous as an Eifel power,/ thirst breath is the blessed/ said the Chaplin of the hour--/ let's resurrect some cap and bells/ or mebbe Bakunin caps and balls--/ Dillinger was a Shakespeare/ of heists; Teddy K. knew Der Geist;/ integrals squeal louder than wolves,/ London Jack rode a wheel/ from Cali to Klondike--/ died with a hard on/

Dig, yo?


scuzi po' editin'. muy rapido.

Iron Lungfish

Zounds! Ah'm wounded, yakuza grrl. when in doubt, plagiarize a superior writer. Ah'm not a poet or literatteur, however, and don't care for Jack London.

Git yr manga on, yakuzita. You have nothing to say of any worth: hope the _______ don't get your HDs and your twink files.


For a little bitch liar hiding behind his keyboard, you sure have a big stupid mouth pray someone doesn't shut it for you-- permanently. Last I heard your mother liked it sort of rough. What do they call her in Passaic or whatver dirt hole you live in? Ms Starfish Queen of the Doo Wop Trailer Park? Mizz Broken Spokes? But im nice: i will treat her pussy to some fun before taking a plunge into her well-lubed ass.

Iron Lungfish

Proving once and for all that I am, in fact, the same poster that's posted everything by 818 and Phrumious and dot-dot-dot and all the rest. John, print up those shirts - I'll take two.

Iron Lungfish

Another note, John - "Ms Starfish Queen of the Doo Wop Trailer Park" would look fantastic on a baby tee.


How about this: You put on some gloves and step in a ring with me for about 3 rounds. Alright tough guy? Yr a piece of confused white trash shit, like yr galpal.

Iron Lungfish

That would be terribly "Fight Club," 818. How am I supposed to beat myself up?

PS. Isn't it rather gauche to converse with oneself on someone else's blog?


That's raht, yakuzita: since you can't write anything creative, at the very least cut n paste, plagiarize, and then market it! I wager you aced Bidness Admin. back at Bonehead State. Starfish? Now that's a new one. It fits your tuna-like character , tho'.

Doctor Memory

I think you took my comment the wrong way, Pheremoze. Believe it or not, we've noticed that you're copping dialects. (And names. And pretensions. And, apparently, drinks before noon.) We're all pretty clear on that. The issue here is that you're trying to cop about ten of them simultaneously, and none of them convincingly. The only person its impressing as anything other than completely ridiculous is you.

Simplify, child, simplify.

Doctor Memory

Another small free hint, for I am a helpful soul: threatening to beat someone up from behind an anonymous ID is pretty much the pinnacle of not-even-slightly-intimidating. Also, and here's that word again: ridiculous.


The ridiculous one is you, lil Doc Pocket Protector-- another garden-variety fratboy satanist. CHeap bidness-major crap, probably like yr white-trash daddy somewhere in the midwest.


No threat, snitchy snatch, but ah'm certain it scared ya. An offer, like for a duel: step into the street/ring/field with a pair of gloves, or, if you prefer, a sword, lance, pistol. Ewe've probably never understood Honor: here's your first opportuni-tay. Marquess of Queensbury-like. LA area, any time.

Doctor Memory

Damnit, he's found me out. It's true, I'm a frat-boy satanist. What gave me away, the Tao Delta Baal keychain?

Another rhetorical question: why is it that the people least capable of carrying off Hunter Thompson's schtick are the ones most prone to copping it? It seems so easy: just sprinkle a few "yrs" and "whoresons" liberally, dispense with punctuation, make some requisite nods toward the apocalypse... poof, instant gonzo. And like most instant products, the results never, ever match that pretty picture on the package. (You might even call it kitsch.)

Ezrizzy in th' Hizzy

Please don't mind me; I've never even seen a gun, much less owned one. Those things are dangerous! What I mean to say is I want a piece of the shirt sales. Let's say twenty percent?

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