Krogenar: Professional Pouncer
Why the post title?
Well, I've been in a discussion with a certain fellow over at the 'GalacticSenate.com' -- a Star Wars themed forum (hey, shut up, they have a non-Star Wars section) and I realized just how intractable some discussions can become. I'm never going to convince this person that they aren't being rational.
This person declared (pretty much) that the Iraqis would have been better off if America had never removed Hussein from power. This flies in the face of so many facts it astounds me. This all came to pass because of a recent report about the number of casualties resulting from the overthrow of Hussein. Some of you may remember the report that came in right before the elections that put the Democrats back in control of Congress -- the report that claimed 650,000 casualties as a result of Hussein's ouster.
My own thought at the time was, "Wow, that's.... wow. That many?"
It just seemed like such a phenomenally huge number. Well, it turns out the team that developed that number pretty much skewed the numbers intentionally. Pam Meister's article on the matter from over at FamilySecurityMatters.org, had this to say:
Science is supposed to be neutral, dispassionate. As they say on criminal forensic science shows, “the science doesn’t lie.” But is that true? As the National Journal article shows, data can be manipulated and results misleading. And it isn’t just in the arena of war, either – scientific data trumpeted by His Holiness Al Gore of the
has been found to be seriously inconvenient – not that he lets that stop him. Churchof Global Warming
Check out Pam's article -- she brings together comments about the 650,000 number before it was revealed to be little more than a hoax. Of course, the elections are already over, so what good are these numbers now? She also pointed out that some are saying that the highly inflated 650,000 number probably helped many Iraqi jihadists justify their actions.
Anyway, as this information came out, this fellow I mentioned at the start flatly declared that the number of casualties did not actually matter -- American forces still killed more Iraqis than Hussein ever did. Even though this is flatly untrue, I persisted in trying to win this guy over. I was even civil, when I did so. But nothing would persuade him. Then I started to feel bad for the guy; every time he says something that doesn't make sense, I pounce on him. I'm a pouncer. I shouldn't pounce because on the other side of the intarwebz is real person, who probably resents being pounced upon.
So from this day forward (until I give up) I will stop hitting people over the head with the facts and instead try to gently lead them to the facts, like a horse to water. Maybe this will work better.