Daily archives: July 8, 2010

The Ethics of Banning Trolls

With genuine reluctance, I find myself obliged to ban Larry from St Louis from commenting on this blog.

I am extremely happy for people to comment on this blog who disagree with my views. It makes it much more interesting for everybody. I wish more people who disagree would comment.

But Larry has a different agenda. His technique is continually to accuse me of holding opinions which I do not in fact hold, and which he thinks will call my judgement into doubt.

Take this comment posted by Larry at 9.35 am today:

I’ve re-read your post on the Russian spies, and once again you’ve proven to be a complete dumbass.

I predicted Russia claiming (in some minor way) those idiots. You didn’t. You thought it was a conspiracy.

You’ve once again self-indicted.

In fact my view on the Russian spies was the exact opposite of what Larry claims it was. As I posted:

I don’t have any difficulty in believing that the FBI really have discovered a colony of Russian sleeper spies in the United States.


This is not Larry being mistaken – remember he claimed he had just re-read my posting. It is rather indicative of a very deliberate technique he has used scores of times, that of claiming I hold an opinion which he believes will devalue my other arguments in the mind of other readers, when I do not in fact hold that opinion.

He most often – indeed daily – does this with reference to 9/11. He tries to divert almost every thread on to the topic of 9/11 and to insinuate that I am among those who believe that 9/11 was “an inside job”. In fact, I am not of that opinion and never have been.

I have put up with this now for months, but Larry’s activities have become so frenetic and are so counter-productive to informed debate, I am not prepared to put up with it any more. I am also deeply sucpicious of the fact that he is able to spend more time on this blog than me, and to post right around the clock (often as with this one at 9.35am – think about it – what time is that in the US?).

Anyway, sorry Larry, your derailing days are over.


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