Friday, November 19, 2010

I've Never Been in a Crowd Like This, They're Nuts:

This post is not about my opinion on the Israel-Palestine issue. My ideal solution -- a secular pluralistic one state solution where Jews and Palestinians get equal rights of citizenship, and in turn there is NO SHARIA, that Palestinians respect the liberty, equality and property rights of, for instance, the gay bars in Israel -- is probably unworkable. And I have no idea what to do on the competing real estate claims.

I'm actually more interested in the public debate -- how to deal with someone who tries the "argument from tears" -- angle. There is another amusing video with Norman Finkelstein where he accused Alan Dershowitz, to his face, of being a plagiarist during a debate. Dershowitz is a big boy and can well handle himself; he's not someone against whom you take off your white glove and slap without expecting full fury in return. Dershowitz hit back hard and is arguably responsible for Finkelstein being refused tenure at DePaul (though they deny AD played a key role).

But as Nietzsche says, whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger. When one emerges through battles like that, it shows in rhetorical debates. Finkelstein makes this poor girl's head explode.

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