Sunday, June 05, 2005

Outta my mind on Sunday moanin'....

...catching up with sisters and brothers in the blogosphere, and in life in general. As one loving friend said to me recently, "It's about time you pulled your head out, Steve..." So this is going to be a mulligan-stew post...

Good moanin' - it was great to see my former hometown team, the Kansas City Royals, beat the Yankees. Now, anyone who's been here a while knows that I don't have much use for sports, generally. But it's nice to see underdogs (and currently there's no one under the Royals) get a boost - and it's always encouraging (in a slightly evil way) to see what the 12-steppers call ego-deflation at depth occuring to the high and mighty (in this case, the Yankees). I won't kick 'em any more while they're down - but as a lowly earth-dweller, it is a little sinister fun to see how the mighty have fallen...

Good moanin' - hat-tip to Lisa at CrazyFaith for the reminder that The Sound of Music celebrates its fortieth anniversary this year. I am an unapologetic fan of TSOM, and I don't care. I am also old enough that I saw this in the theatres the first time around - so songs like Favorite Things, Do-Re-Mi and Edelweiss are just woven into my DNA. A great article in the New York Times says it best for me: The Hills Still Resonate. May you bloom and grow, indeed.

Just moanin' - about Lisa's reference to Jesus Christ, Vampire Slayer - a cult movie that she loves and for which I couldn't wait for the end. She seems like such a smart young lady, most times...In short, the very worst bits of Godspell, The Saint, Buffy and a bad kung-fu movie all rolled into one. Sheesh...

Interestin' moanin' - back to the NY Times - an incredibly insightful essay by Matt Miller called Is Persuasion Dead? He asks the very pertinent question - can anybody be persuaded of anything, these days? Here's a teaser...
The signs are not good. Ninety percent of political conversation amounts to dueling "talking points." Best-selling books reinforce what folks thought when they bought them. Talk radio and opinion journals preach to the converted. Let's face it: the purpose of most political speech is not to persuade but to win, be it power, ratings, celebrity or even cash.

By contrast, marshaling a case to persuade those who start from a different position is a lost art. Honoring what's right in the other side's argument seems a superfluous thing that can only cause trouble, like an appendix. Politicos huddle with like-minded souls in opinion cocoons that seem impervious to facts.
There's probably a whole post dedicated to this question - especially as it deals with questions of faith and practice over which churches are ready to schism. (It's also a great question for the blogosphere, where many folks are so convinced of their opinion, that there is no need to muddy their thoughts with trivia like facts.) It's a worthwhile read, in the meantime.

That's it for now - I've got to spend some time at work, to prepare for a deadline I'm still not ready for, and then taking-care-of-life stuff. Peace, y'all.

2 comments:

Keith Brenton said...

What would make any nit-headed idiot think that persuasion is dead? If you can't see that there's only One Right Way to look at everything - which happens to be MY way - it's you're own stupid fault. Ninnies like that can't be persuaded. Why, all right-thinking people know better. I know I do. And I'm sick and tired of being told that I don't.

(Apologies to the Monty Python folks for freely adapting.)

Michael said...

Reminds me of a deal I offered my Partner early in our relationship: We would occasionally do what he wanted, as long as he realized that I was right.

His version of the deal is we will do what I want when it's what he wanted anyway.

I still think my offer was more generous. But then, that's the kind of guy I am.