Posting Guidelines: Why Your Comment Was Deleted


When I started this blog, one of the greatest fears I had was that the comments would end up like they do practically everywhere else people are allowed to blog freely. If you want an idea of what I’m talking about, you can find dark corners of the internet where human civility barely exists, and read that comments there. I don’t want that here, so I don’t allow it.

I’ve written Posting Guidelines so that you know what I’m looking for. I’ve bent the rules over time, but I’ve tried to stay within the guidelines I’ve laid down.

The purpose is to keep the blog useful. It’s also to keep our conversation away from truly stupid topics that five-year-olds use to win an argument. That’s why I have zero tolerance for logical fallacies, especially the logical fallacy of ad hominem.

I also don’t tolerate anything that I wouldn’t want to say to my mother. I don’t like reading the filth that is on the internet, peppered, sometimes heavily, with vulgarities and explicit discussions. Such things don’t need to be. You can make your point without talking like a sailor, or worse.

I know this excludes a lot of people’s posts. I don’t have the time to give everyone a personal response to explain why their post was trashed, either. Those conversations turn out like this anyway:

Poster: %&^*@ %^(&*^ you (%$*&(

Me: I’m trashing your post because it doesn’t add to the discussion and is full of vulgarities.

Poster: %&^*@ %^(&*^ you (%$*&(

If you live the kind of life where vulgarity is just how you speak, then you’re not welcome to speak here. If you live your life where the entire foundation of your political philosophy is founded on ad hominem attacks, then you’re not welcome here. If you never learned how to debate reasonably, that is, identify weak points in your opponents arguments and rebut their attacks on your arguments, which can be done civilly and cordially, then you are not welcome here.

On the other hand, if you can form two thoughts that are actually sensible, and explain them in a way other people can actually understand what you say, then you are welcome here, and encouraged to post.

The number of comments here is low, of course, since the bar is so high. If a comment doesn’t add to the discussion, it won’t be found here. If it does, then it will.


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