The rambling thoughts of a Modern Orthodox Chassid (whatever that means). Contact me at emansouth @

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Controversy as Sport UPDATED!

The following was a comment to a post on a famous Jbloggers blog.

Im not certain why this foster child should attract this special attention. There is no shortage of foster children in need of homes. You should simply link to the general contact info for foster care agencies.
There is only one Jblog where a commenter would actually register a complaint against this post.

DovBear. How did you guess?

In response to my emasil to him advising him of this recent post, Dovbera emailed me to express his disappointment that my first ever mention of the Kolko situation was in the context of my criticism of his blog.

In retrospect, I think that Dovbear's point was fair. I had never given him credit for ranting about Kolko and it was unfair to mention it only in the context of unrelated criticism. (By the way, for the record, there is no place in Hell hot enough for people like Kolko and his enablers).

In fact, my criticism of his blog was that, in general, it attracts farbisiner (bitter) commentors (among many excellent others, of course), and that, in particular, his spoof on Chareidi Airlines (which I personally found unfunny) was gratuitous and enabled the psycho commentors.

Then, when I saw the comment quoted above, it all became clear.

Dovbear is all about controversy. He thrives on it. He invites it. He instigates it. You've heard of a rodeph shalom (one who seeks peace)? Dovie is a rodeph controversy. He loves controversy for the sake of controversy.

So, instead of presenting arguments in a measured, thoughtful way, he will present them in an outrageous, thoughtful (and often hilarious) way. The more outrageous, the better. He will make an argument in the most controversial and annoying way possible while still maintaining his credibility. Thus, his position may well be valid (or, at least arguable) but his method of delivering it is specifically designed to drive those who disagree nuts.

As they say, it sells papers so who am I, whose hit rate is a fraction of Dovie's, to argue?

That style also attracts whackos. That's why, in addition to the many sane and reasoned commentors, he get so many fringe, marginal nutjobs, on both sides of arguments, to comment.

At the end of the day, Dovie plays an important role in the Jblogosphere. He is the Reggie Jackson of the Jblogosphere. The straw that stirs the pot.



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