Wednesday, November 30, 2005


The Depth of Debate

UK Indymedia provides a good insight into not only the quality of 'journalism' on Indymedia, but the calibre of comments which follow it.

An article entitled: Neocons floated idea of bombing al-jazeera before connects the dots:
Tuesday’s story in the Daily Mirror that detailed what was allegedly in a Top Secret British security memo got me thinking: Is this the first time someone suggested bombing al Jazeera out of existence? I had a hunch that it had been talked about, on some level, and made its way up to the President, who was probably keen on the idea, personally.

Coworkers told me I was on another planet – there is absolutely no way that the President would ever consider bombing within a friendly country. This just made me even more determined to check out my gut feeling. So I did what determined-but-lazy people do. I did a Google search.

Sure enough, a search for “bomb al Jazeera” led me to this article, written in September 2003 by Frank Gaffney, in which he recommends “taking out” al Jazeera “one way or another.”
That must prove it! Good grief... Now there's a quality bit of journalistic research. Especially considering all the crap on Indymedia and every other whacked out conspiracy site gets indexed by Google.

(See also: Google Discredits Itself)

Comments follow:
The terrorist insurgents in Iraq who are murdering innocent civilians and bombing mosques are the real enemy of the Iraqi people not the coalition forces who are trying to help the Iraqis build a new democracy! The vast majority of people who have been killed in Iraq since the initial war to oust the Saddam regime ended in April 2003 have been killed by the terrorist insurgents. These so called "freedom fighters" have even bombed mosques full of worshipers. Imagine the outcry if Israel had bombed just one mosque and killed just one muslim.

A reasonable argument which is 'rebutted' thus (in full:
Have you got any actual facts to back those statements up Concerned?
In other words: "You didn't provide a URL so I don't believe you (nyah boo sucks to you)."

Concerned's response:
I dont know why i even bother paying attention to a 5 year old talking politics but heres a couple of matters for your information on who targets what in Iraq.
Isn't it amazing that convincing arguments on Indymedia are written off unless they provide links to various other sources. Yet conspiracy theories, with detailed referencing of other equally dubious sites, are happily taken at face value. See Declassified Anti-Semitism (well referenced) where I noted:
The gratuitous use of references, to support a premise which is fundamentally wrong from a factual standpoint (let alone an intellectual, moral or ethical one) however is disgraceful.
Such is the level of debate on Indymedia. What is the point?

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