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Divisive Thread Proposal-Michael Please Comment

That does not require censorship, banning, lists of troublemakers, etc.

Why not create a separate forum for such topics and place that forum at the very bottom of the forums list-hiding our dirty laundry.

What topics would be placed there? Whatever topics Michael, the moderators or a consensus of the membership deems to be divisive or not a plus to the movement.

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It's all good, even the bad stuff

sometimes. We learn much during hard times maybe more than during the good. When faced with challenges like divisive threads take them as opportunities of testing your patience and your listening skills, if that doesn't help, test our ability to WALK away from a divisive thread with NO comment.
Eventually, it will go away or be swept away by Michael.

Prepare & Share the Message of Freedom through Positive-Peaceful-Activism.

Agree QS that is why I am against

dealing w/ problems w/ the only tools being banning people/topics.

Another benefit of this route; if you are seeking the controversial or heated debate it will all be found in one convenient location. At the same time, anyone with less thick skin, less open-minded would be less likely to become wrongly informed or put off quickly to our movement based on a very wide ranging list of forum topics being front and center.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

To your point

farther down on this thread, the discussions will be less extensive than they currently are because they will be off the main page.

That will acheive your goal of eliminating contentious threads from the awareness of the majority of viewers. But is that good? Will the DP still be the DP without difficult and emotional issues front and center?

The intention of this proposal

are these:

1) Put less stress on MN to deal w/ each new pissing contest that pops up

2) Maintain a high level of free speech

3) Enhance the focus on our shared goals, the things that unite us

4) Reduce dependence and arguments on banning people/topics-that is just another area for disagreement and banning people is not a permanent solution-they come back.

5) Make the structure here less conducive for our opponents to come and instigate trouble/sidetrack progress

6) Make the structure here less of a into the fire experience for the newly awakening

7) Make our most public face, to friend and foe alike, be one of united resolve of serious, mature individuals rather than just another typical political forum brimming with childish antics and agent provocateurs.

Consider this:Would not such an arrangement tend to separate out those that constantly initiate controversial threads for the sake of creating controversy from those that really wish only to discuss a controversial topic because they consider that topic to be truly important?

My goal is definitely NOT to remove contentious threads from being available to all. Anyone here for the briefest time will soon no where to go to argue over such things. Would you prefer that your pet topic, what you believe to be critically important be permanently banned or would you prefer it only be moved from center stage?

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

Become atomic as in indivisible not explosive

All for freedom? Freedom for all!

Free includes debt-free!

The Origin of Rights

This is the last comment I'll make on this subject because I care neither to be banned nor considered... (gasp) "Divisive".

The mission-statement of the DailyPaul reads:

"restoring Constitutional government to the United States of America"

The Declaration, the Constitution and the accompanying Bill of Rights were written for the express purpose of DECLARING, not granting, but acknowleding and DECLARING the rights of individuals. Those documents were written for the purpose of forming a government who's sole job was to PROTECT these rights which had been granted to them BY THEIR CREATOR.

The intention and perspective of the Founders is clear in the very first sentence of the Declaration of Independence. Whether one considers them Deists, mono-theists, Christian, Spiritualists, "followers of the Great Architect" or any other religious brand, it is clear that they acknowledged and gave full credit to a supernatural and Supreme Sovereign for the gift of their rights and liberties. They openly acknowledged a power greater than man and knew that any government would be forever inferior to the will of the Almighty. The very purpose of our government was to protect those God-given rights from the selfish designs of unscrupulous men.

I truly do not comprehend how one can have a meaningful let-alone productive conversation about "restoring Constitutional government to the United States of America" without first freely acknowledging the source from which these rights to liberty have been granted. In the abscense of an ultimate Sovereign, the only remaining source for "rights" would be from another man and those aren't rights at all- only the temporary and extinguishable permissions of a would-be tyrant. My Rights come from my Creator and are non-negotiable.

And for all those who would ridicule or belittle my faith or of others who believe- I am the "world's worst Christian". I make no pretense of any moral superiority. I'm weak. I'm vile. I'm filled with every negative quality that can be befall a human being. You'll never hear me proclaim "my greatness", for their is none to be found. But God has convicted my heart of these shortcomings and little-by-little He leads my thoughts and actions to His ends. I have voluntarily yielded my pride and my will to my Creator because HE is the source of my liberty, my well-being and my Rights as a human being.

So Michael; I apologize for any part played in creating a disturbance to your site. You're a good man and I admire and respect your efforts. I'll shut-up from here on.

But I still don't understand how any conversation of restoring Rights can not by default include at the very least a discussion of their origin.

edit- fixed an html tag!

Gary divisiveness

per se is not at issue, disagreement is not at issue, any particular topic, topics is not at issue, heated discussion/disagreement is not at issue. What is at issue is what is the best way to allow a range of free individuals to both work toward a shared goal and allow differences to be aired without disrupting progress toward achieving the shared goal. There will always be among us good folks that are truly working toward our common goal that will have honest and legitimate differences/disagreements with other folks here that are equally good and are equally working toward the common goal. Merely picking sides(officially) in such disagreements is damaging.
There will also always be among us those who are bent on destroying our movement. If you understand what we are trying to achieve you also know realizing our goal will pee in a lot of peoples cornflakes. Having a range of potential new converts come here and observe, prominently, what appears as a rabble with no common bond is damaging. Most of us here realize that what most of what goes on here and appears on casual observation to be nothing more than a chaotic rabble is not that at all, that what it really is, for the most part, true individual freedom in microcosm playing out in real-time. As such, in reality, for true Liberty lovers it is a beautiful thing. How to get new potential converts to stick around long enough to understand that chaotic rabble for what it truly is.

How do we balance all these things in the most efficient way?

Banning people and topics will always be tools in the bag but should those be the only tools. Are those always the best tools to use? How long do banned people stay banned? As long as it takes to re-register under a new screen name.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

I disagree with a separate forum

Because some of these "divisive" topics are actually important to hash out. Anti-abortion vs Choice vs the Constitution. Role of religion in public affairs. Immigration and scapgoats. Etc.

The problem is not the topic, it is the uncivility of the participants. The proper response is to monitor the decorum, not the subject matter.

Besides, once a "divisive" subject is moved to a separate forum, no one will bother with it. The fun, for the perps out there, is in irritating other visitors to the DP with outrageous jabs.

The real answer is for the rest of us to not respond to uncivil provocations. I need to take my own advice.

Ron all of those topics

you consider important to hash out will be allowed to be hashed out. All(well nearly so, it is possible MN could ban something) topics anyone considers important to hash out will have a place to be hashed out. My guess is that some of that hashing out process will become greatly abbreviated once the lure of playing out center stage is removed.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

Bad Idea

It's not worth wasting Michael's precious resources of time and money to host an off-topic forum. There are plenty of other forums where you are free to have religious flamewars and shout at each other over other divisive topics--why not have those discussions there? There's no reason why you NEED to discuss those topics here on a Ron Paul forum.

Who decides what is off topic?

Of course in the end Michael does. Michael, as has been mentioned, has shown commendable tolerance in the range of topics he will allow. This allows him to continue that while limiting damage caused by those bent on damage by taking advantage of his tolerance. It also should allow him to be less distracted dealing with such matters.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

Actually, Nystrom is very tolerant of OFF TOPIC threads.

But there are LIMITS to that tolerance.

On topic is "Restoring Constitutional Government the United States of America" according to the tag line of this website.

"I believe the true significance of the Gold Commission is that the politicians and central bankers were so alarmed at such a thing that they made sure it was packed by an array of Keynesians and monetarists." (Ron Paul 1985)

Yes, Michael IS very tolerant

* of "off topic" posts as are most of the members here!

That is not the problem.

The problem is a lack of manners and respect for the community displayed by a few that "take over" a topic or topics ..keeping that post or posts dominant on the actives over other topics. It's rude and frustrating to everyone. Many other things get lost off the page while this behavior runs rampant. ( which is one of the purposes for those that instigate the situation)

****
"I think we are living in a world of lies: lies that don't even know they are lies, because they are the children and grandchildren of lies." ~ Chris Floyd

"I think we are living in a world of lies: lies that don't even know they are lies, because they are the children and grandchildren of lies." ~ Chris Floyd

Yes, so what course of action does that suggest?

If the problem is a few selfish brats then shouldn't the resolution involve dealing with those specific individuals? Why should the solution involve dividing up forum topics into acceptable versus non-acceptable? Somebody here is trying to "not waste a crisis" by showing up with a bait-and-switch plan to get us to give up our freedom by offering a false sense of security. Would the measures suggested have prevented the individuals from endlessly self-bumping posts? Not that I can see. Don't fall for it!

Well my answer would be yes

to your first question lol! but I am not the site owner or a moderator and that particular resolution did not happen during the last two months!Meanwhile damage was done..mission accomplished for the instigator(s) with plenty of help from enablers that got sucked into it! It's very hard to ignore when you log on and every day for two months there are three or four posts being manipulated into divisive circular arguments! Some people leave in frustration..others try to fight it and end up feeding into it.

I don't know what the best answer really is but hopefully we can all handle it better next time.

*****
"I think we are living in a world of lies: lies that don't even know they are lies, because they are the children and grandchildren of lies." ~ Chris Floyd

"I think we are living in a world of lies: lies that don't even know they are lies, because they are the children and grandchildren of lies." ~ Chris Floyd

It's all good

With MN busy working on the new site it's understandable if some of the wackos slip past the defenses. All good.

Yes, exactly

.

Sure, but Mike identified religion as being the "flashpoint".

Not NASCAR or flower arranging.

"I believe the true significance of the Gold Commission is that the politicians and central bankers were so alarmed at such a thing that they made sure it was packed by an array of Keynesians and monetarists." (Ron Paul 1985)

ROTFL!!!

now where are those NASCAR threads...must have missed them... and flower arranging? Now that one would probably get like 500 comments!!

hahhahahaaa

NASCAR arouses great passions in some people ;-)

http://www.autoblog.com/2007/02/12/top-gear-crew-visits-u-s-...

"I believe the true significance of the Gold Commission is that the politicians and central bankers were so alarmed at such a thing that they made sure it was packed by an array of Keynesians and monetarists." (Ron Paul 1985)

Excellent point.

_____________________________
"Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it." -- Joseph Goebbels

_____________________________
"Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it." -- Joseph Goebbels

better idea

lets stream line the banning stuff. Lets say a thread has a hundred comments but about 75 or 80 come from one guy, well since he is self bumping, and if it is a divisive thread, why dont we just ban him. I am pretty sure this whole mess got started by fedor doing what I just described, but that is my opinion.

I'm opposed to this idea

Ok, I now get that you're speaking about TOPICS and not the decorum guidelines (which would remain). However, one person's divisive topic is another person's acceptable conversation subject. Boru posted the topics he sees as good candidates for "controversial" or "divisive" status. His list is NOT my list. He wrote: "prostitution, legalizing MJ, etc." Decriminalizing marijuana is only controversial to PEOPLE WHO CANNOT MIND THEIR OWN BUSINESS. Decriminalizing prostitution is only controversial to PEOPLE WHO CANNOT MIND THEIR OWN BUSINESS. Why should the Daily Paul take sides in that debate by relegating its discussion to the leper colony? Since when did topics, any topic, become divisive prima facie? Why should a governance model based on a popular vote even be considered? Should the 1st Amendment be subject to a popularity contest? The DP is a private guest area dedicated to upholding constitutional principles...

Also, I'm not of the opinion the moderation of the Daily Paul is broken and needs fixing. I believe insane or inappropriate topics are deleted already. Michael and company do a great job and I'm generally in agreement with the discretion they've exercised. As someone with a healthy mistrust of authority (just a bit) I don't see why it's desirable to give moderators the discretion to relegate a topic to ghetto status. The choice should be elimination or acceptance.

Ideally, any segmentation based on topic should by done based on the membership and not any other criteria IMO. For example, I would support a "members only" section which couldn't be accessed by guests. But any attempt to edit for content above and beyond the already great job the DP does would smack of hypocrisy to me.

The argument we should hide our dirty laundry is a red herring. Should freedom be sold as an idealized image of perfect harmony? Because it ain't. Why should we hide disagreements? The fact this site allows disagreements to be aired publicly and with minimal editing is a testament to the strength of our ideas. It's the other people who needs to sneak around in secret and put on a crazy idealized public whitewash.

Of course you illustrate why this needs to be addressed.

We stand for Freedom-so we do not want to SILENCE anyone if there is some other Free Market alternative. We all have different opinions on what topics are appropriate and which are not-which are critical and which are not. We will never be able to agree on a list of "BANNED" topics.

However, the essential rule of thumb for CORE TOPICS would be based on the example of RP. At this site, M. N. is the final arbiter, the interpreter, of the RP example. Should any topic you consider important be deemed NON-CORE it can still get a full airing, just not in the core topic area.

BTW-Just because something is deemed non-core at one point in time does not mean it is forever so. Example-Should RP clearly demonstrate a topic to be core that previously was not then in moves to the front and center area.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

I must be dense

Someone please explain to me why divisiveness should have a place on this forum or in the whole movement? IMO, we need to focus on the things that unite us, not the things that cause frustration, anger and ultimately division. What am I missing?

Please read this Gil

Rather than making judgments about topics and those that choose them, simply tuck them away in an out of the way place. I believe all of us collectively(GAK) can fairly easily recognize topics that are divisive rather than harmonizing on what we have as our core common beliefs/goals. Once a thread becomes clearly divisive, no need to close it to comments, ban people, make that topic verbotten, etc. just move it to the stigma/fringe/not constructive arena to be flogged in semi-private.

*************This sends two important messages about us:"""""""""""""""

We are very tolerant of all voices, to the maximum extent possible. We are also a group of serious people w/ a serious goal that WILL remain paramount, we intend to keep a narrow focus on a few critical matters that unite a broad spectrum of Americans.

I also expect this to greatly limit the activities of those that are primarily motivated to weaken our cause it; will remove some of their tools like deliberately sowing controversy/dissent or crying censorship.

From below, perhaps you missed it.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

Still not convinced

We can disagree, right? I believe that most of what you are suggesting would work for people that are here to discuss and learn according to the forum posting guidelines. But those folks aren't the problem. The ones that cause the problems have no respect for guidelines, rules, manners or protocol. If a weed wants a place in my garden, I don't negotiate. It's my garden. Let that weed cry censorship, I don't care. I'm just not seeing the value in any of this.

I don't think you get it.

Troublemakers don't come here to sit in some back corner where nobody sees them, and they can't disrupt the site.
They will bring it right out onto the front page anyway.

And then it's a matter of either letting them slide, just like is being done now, while decent members get banned in the fallout, or ban them anyway.

Why waste time making a forum corner that nobody is going to go into?
I assure you that all the troublemakers will be right on the front page where they want to be, anyway. Because their whole purpose here is to disrupt and fracture the site. Their purpose is not achieved sitting in a hidden corner somewhere in the back of the site.
Then what if they violate the rules and come out front?
Whaddya gonna do then?
Well, ban them, of course.
So why go around the mulberry bush, wasting time and money? We know who they are.
Just ban them and get it over with, and block the IP address permanently.

Big T I do not think you completely

understand the concept/proposal. Of course, those you refer to WANT to be in the most visible place. However, such threads will be forcibly moved to divisive land. This is a better solution than banning, or listing forbidden topics. You said in an earlier comment that "WE" know who they are. Who is the WE and who is the THEY-it is subjective. Those that are motivated solely/primarily to be disruptive and attention seekers will find this place far less attractive when their antics are not front and center.

This does not ban BANNING, it just provides an additional step/tool in dealing w/ Topics. As stated below, the standard get you banned rules will remain. This avoids getting into the difficult matter of what topics are off limits.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

Yes, I understand.

I just contend that it's only going to work for the decent members who "self-police" their actions and comments, and are not the source of the problems.

I believe that in the end analysis, the troublemakers are not going to abide by it, and it's going to take a perma-ban process with IP blocking to even make a dent in it. They nearly all have come back under different screen names, time and again, and we've all seen it happen over and over.

So while I do understand that this makes sense from a reasonable person's perspective, we are not dealing with reasonable people in these troublemakers.
If they are limited in topic headers,they'll make a bogus topic header title, and then swerve it in the comments section, hijacking their own thread or other people's threads, just like they already do now.
If a banned person somehow got back in under another screen name and new IP address, then ban that one too and block it.
Most old timers here can sniff-out a returning troll by his posting language,within the first day that he's back.

So, I think your idea is fine, for the people who respect the rules and decorum of the site. But, the banning is what it eventually is going to come to anyway, so I say get it done and move on.