Though I may not have made it entirely clear that I reserved the right to revise and extend my thoughts, I hope you won't object to my following up a bit nonetheless. In fact, as I continued to reflect on your comment and began to write a lengthy critique thereof, my response started taking up so much space that I drafted it into an essay instead--"Note to an Anti-Racist Egghead Whiner" or some such. But when the page-count reached forty, I realized it was just too big to drop into one of your comment threads--given your penurious condition, I couldn't in good conscience saddle you with the bandwidth charges. So I'll just paste a few of its salient points here, reserving the right to revise and extend.

What I find inexcusable in your comment is its mendacity. It oozes insincerity and disingenuousness. You indicate that what you have found inexcusable and delete-able in several of my comments is their insulting and even injurious quality. Exhibit A is the notorious and regrettable bspycho affair. The bpsycho affair was something which you yourself deliberately engineered--that it happened at all was entirely due to your own decision, intention and calculation. Once you had brought the confrontation into being and bpsycho had directly expressed to me his fierce black resentment and dismay over my derogation of negritudinous subhumanity, you said:

I wouldn’t have blamed you, b-p, if you had responded more angrily

Here, you play to the stereotype of the angry and threatening black male and encourage him to vent his fierce anger. So much for the dispassionate, impartial, serious, rational, authentic, free inquiry into the nature of right and wrong! It's remarkable how quickly you jettison your highfalutin ideals whenever they don't serve the purpose of berating poor little me.

Then you said the following:

I admit I’m curious to see his [that would be me] reply to your questions

Now, Colin, you couldn't possibly have imagined for even one second that my reply to bpsycho's questions was going to take the form of a "serious or would-be serious inquiry into right and wrong", yet you encouraged me to "wade" in all the same.

You even said:

I’d invite him [again, this is me] to give it his best

Shame on you! You were positively goading the two of us. In the wake of your encouragement, incitement, prodding and goading I mounted the response I did. I can only assume that that response is what you are primarily referring to when you accuse me of maliciously insulting, humiliating, derogating, degrading, abusing, harming and injuring your "dear, dear friend" bpsycho.

Now given that your most recent comment is devoted to explaining "What [you] have found inexcusable, and delete-able, in several of [my] comments" and the specific example you supply was my insulting comment unto bpsycho--isn't it interesting that that was a comment that you didn't actually delete?

I reject any notion that a commitment to free inquiry obligates me to provide a forum for verbal attacks on my friends, or on strangers, on anyone at all, and by extension on myself or my reputation.

Well, let's just say you didn't exactly "reject the notion" over on the Will's Affront thread.

Now, for some mysterious reason, you have taken this occasion to go on and on about your "dear, dear friend" bpsycho. I'm just curious--do you know the real name of your "dear, dear friend" bpsycho or do you only know him by his puerile moniker? I can only assume the former is the case, as the latter would be an odd kind of "dear, dear friendship". Say or think what you will about me, Colin--consider me a friend, an enemy, an acquaintance or a non-entity--but you know my name.

I'm obliged to thank you for this reply--whenever you respond to my admittedly mediocre comments, I'm grateful--but I think it's a good idea you didn't publish this as a post up top, as it isn't one of your more inspired outings. From the very beginning, I've noticed that your objections to my racist/bigoted comments are somewhat dispirited. Carrying the cross of anti-racism is burdensome to you, an unhappy fate. My own comments on the opposite line, to the contrary, tend to be light-hearted, froehlich, "gay" in the old-fashioned sense. Interestingly enough, I'm a racist/bigot with a good clean conscience--you're an anti-bigot with a bit of a bad conscience.

An interesting question to pose to you would be: Have you ever been on the other side of the fence? Do you think I myself have ever been on the other side? Of course I have--the prohibition/taboo against racism/bigotry is one of the primary forms, if not the primary form, of specific social conditioning that we all (or at least we whites) receive in the United States. In the past, I've even scolded my compatriots a time or two for racism. As I got older, the anti-racism ideological imperative revealed itself for what it is: a pious fraud, a noble (or rather, ignoble) lie, a blatant political manipulation, the emperor's new clothes. Today, I aspire to be the boy in that famous parable who says, "The emperor's naked--he hasn't got any clothes on!" On some level, you yourself know the emperor isn't wearing any clothes, which is why your protestations are half-hearted and unenergetic.

But have you ever been on the other side? I suspect the answer is no. That leaves two possibilities concerning the genesis of your commitment to anti-racism. Either you are innately graced with the wisdom of anti-racism--or, more likely... your social conditioning took permanent hold of you. In that case, your scolding others--be it me or Sully or whomever else--couldn't possibly be interesting or substantial, just the same old you-know-what we all hear, all the time, over and over, ad infinitum, ad nauseum in contemporary America.

I strongly suspect, for instance, that the interlocutor whom you sought to insult, longtime friend of this blog b-psycho, who in the event proved himself superior to your slights, may very well reflexively dislike white people. According to your own theory, he ought to do so, since he is not one of them.

To say that I "sought to insult" him is a bit of an exaggeration, I think. I may have insulted him, but I didn't exactly "seek" to do so. It's true that I'd left a number of comments on this blog that were derogatory of blacks--and you had deleted every one of them. When I left a comment in that vein over on the Will's Affront thread, I did so in the absolute confidence--based on past performance--that you would immediately delete it too. That day--apparently out of some misguided solidarity with the Charlie Hebdo pornographers--you decided to let it stand as a tribute to freedom of speech. Now I didn't mind, because I'm perfectly willing to stand by everything I say, however unacceptable it may be in today's climate. (I've even been known to apologize a time or two when I've been convinced that I was guilty of an injustice.) In response, bpsycho asked me some rather pointed questions to which I replied in my customary impish manner. Beforehand, you encouraged me to do so--you said, "I'm eager to see how Mr. McKenzie responds". If "longtime friend of this blog b-psycho" was the victim of insulting behavior, you frankly set him up for it. That's on you, Colin, not me. In any event, I just want to make clear that I am far less contemptuous of bpsycho's negritude than I am of his libertarianism.

As for blacks like bspycho disliking, despising, or even hating whites--I'm convinced that most of them do and, as I've said, I think that's perfectly healthy, perfectly normal, nothing at all to puzzle over or to abhor.

Furthermore, as perhaps ought to go without saying, under any conventional reading of American history, there is plentiful reason for an individual of African American descent to dislike the members of every other designated racial or ethnic group, and, of course, to dislike “whites” especially, and most especially to dislike whites who have been known to suggest that “blacks” on balance ought to be grateful rather than angry.

This is really a wonderful thought for Black History Month. I just want to make clear that I haven't been known to suggest "that 'blacks' on balance ought to be grateful rather than angry". I couldn't care less what blacks as blacks think about their ostensible plight. I want to live apart and separated from such concern. That anyone would suggest that I ought--or even must--be concerned about blacks or Jews or Hispanics or homosexuals or Muslims, etc. etc. is just politically manipulative nonsense.

In the context of any serious or would-be serious inquiry into right and wrong, a refusal to consider the moral implications of one’s own statements defeats the entire purpose of the exercise

Believe me when I tell you that I'm perfectly willing "to consider the moral implications" of my own statements, if only it can be demonstrated that they are wrong or unjust. But said demonstration always goes wanting and mere pouting is a poor substitute.

CKM: Because you'd kindly responded to the Heidegger quote I'd left over on the "A rarely if ever" thread--which in turn seemed to spark off a further exchange between you and Cervantes that I also found interesting--I wanted to review the original post and its attendant comment thread in their entirety as a preparation for rejoining the conversation. I'd missed a few things on my first reading--as I often do, I'm afraid. Right off the bat, for example, you mentioned "Sully"--I'd assumed this was a reference to Andrew Sullivan. This time round I clicked on the name, only to learn that Sully was an erstwhile commenter here with whom you'd had an apparently testy exchange.

I couldn't help but be gripped by the subject of this post: guys petulantly walking away from a blog (and specifically, CK MacLeod's), because I've done it here myself. You'll recall that back in June or so of last year I bade you a fond farewell after you deleted one of my comments. I'd like to think my own departure wasn't entirely unjustified, since comment deletion sends a message that one's point of view is toxic and hence unwelcome. Well obviously I couldn't stay away and it was no doubt dumb for me to leave in a fit of pique in any case. I know I've made a lot of stupid forays into the comment threads around here, but I'd like to think I've also made a decent contribution or two along the way and I hope to improve in future--assuming, that is, that this blog has a future; which I hope it does, even if it is going through a bit of a dry spell right now.

Anyway, I still intend to say something more over on the other thread but I did want to respond to a few things here--perhaps at the risk of arousing your ire yet once more (I'm afraid I'm too inured now to take offence).

One corollary of this view is that all claims to be acting upon a literal reading – whether of the Koran, the Pentateuch, the New Testament, the US Constitution, or the manual that came with your TV – are suspect.

If you're reading the instruction manual that came with your TV figuratively or rhetorically, then you're reading it foolishly--but I couldn't agree more about the other texts you name. In fact, I would go so far as to say (as I have before, in our exchange over the correct interpretation of Leo Strauss--where I seem to recall that you argued for a more or less "literal" reading of his work, one that would validate the notion that Strauss was a full-fledged liberal democratist) that all texts save for instruction manuals possess an inherent rhetorical dimension; that is, an intent to persuade. The more that intent to persuade can be kept hidden, the better the chance it has to succeed--which is why I think stories are perhaps the most powerful rhetorical devices out there, since people tend to perceive them as mere entertainments. But I don't think instruction manuals are trying to "persuade" us or to alter our will.

That also means that it is entirely possible for a believer to affirm the holiness, perfection, beauty, instructiveness, etc., of the Koran and for that believer to mean nothing ill toward you or your family or your community or your belief system or your nation.

Well, it certainly isn't possible for the Muslim "believer" to "affirm" the Koran without denying that Jesus is the Son of God--something which the Koran repeatedly denies, as you know--or without denying that what we today call Judaism is grounded in the authentic text of the Torah--something again which the Koran repeatedly denies, as you know. It does seem to me that these things constitute "ill" will toward those faith traditions--but I happen to be someone who sees enmity, ill-will and hate between races, peoples, faiths and sects to be something perfectly healthy and normal, not at all anything to puzzle over or to abhor. As to why you feel the need to police others on this line, I'm not sure. I find it curious that someone like you who is committed to the equal freedom of each and all would want to deter someone like me from exercising the most basic of freedoms: the freedom to be "indifferent toward" or to dislike, despise, and even hate other races, religions, etc. Just dislike, despise and hate, mind you--not torture or kill; just live "apart from" in thought and deed. I guess it speaks to the idea that the "equal freedom of each and all" is not a text to be taken at face value, but serves rather an ulterior rhetorical purpose.

To close--and to the specific matter at hand--allow me to say that I've read the Koran in translation more than once and I find it to be a very beautiful book indeed. Though I'm not a Muslim myself, with every passing day I find both Islam and Islamism to be more and more attractive when compared to the contemporary liberal democratic capitalist West. Even so, I've no intention of selling out to Islam and I don't think Islamism or the Islamic world poses much of a threat to the decadent, enervated yet wealthy and technologically powerful West--for the obvious reason. Which is: that Muslims, like all non-European peoples, are--by and large and in general--basically dumb and thus easily defeatable.