Monday, April 16, 2012

Get Over It!

I don't know if anyone saw my exchange of post-banning pleasantries with Mike Smithson at Political Betting yesterday, but given that he finished one of his retorts with the words "Get used to it" (one of his pet phrases), I thought the following suggestion for an advertising campaign on buses might capture the zeitgeist of the site. Click to enlarge...


  1. Smithson seems to have psychological issues with Nats. Would love to know what was in that email you sent him.

  2. Yep. It seems to sum up the ethos of the place. I know you enjoy pitting your wits against a number of them at a time, and winning, but I wonder if it is really worth the effort.

    They seem like a closed minded group of back patters from the Home Counties of England. They don't know or want to know about Scotland. Rather like Northumbria, to them, it is a county somewhere in the far north when there are sheep... and things... they think... maybe.

    I used to read some of their posts: I used to comment occasionally, but everything I ever said was ignored and they continued their 'nice' little discussion taking account of only that which they wanted to take account themselves.

    Smithson seems to be neurotic not just about mentions of Scotland, but about people's behaviour. He reminds me rather of my Latin teacher; an elderly (and somewhat deaf) man who seemed to object to the sound of any voice that was not his, and who ruled his classroom with the kind of iron rod that had long since gone out of fashion. I don't remember a single person who liked him.

  3. Cordon : Here's my email to Mike - it was in response to a message he sent me 'explaining' my temporary banning.


    I can assure you that those standing orders are not being applied consistently, as is the case with virtually every other "rule" that has been floated. I note that when Nick Palmer made the very reasonable suggestion that a fixed set of rules should be posted so that everyone could know where they stand, you responded that the only rule (other than avoiding libel and copyright breach) was not to "piss you off", which was "difficult to define". Quite so.

    What I would say is that I'm increasingly unimpressed by the lectures along the lines of "if you want to post here, you must do X, Y and Z". I'm going to continue acting on PB just as I always have, without trying to walk an absurd tightrope, and if that's going to get me unjustly banned, so be it. There are, as you say, many other places to post. I would like to be able to post at PB, but not at an unreasonable price. You must act as you see fit - but you must understand that others have their own ideas about fairness and self-respect as well.


    I received a characteristic one-word reply - "Noted". Evidently he hadn't noted a word of it, though, because yesterday he was back to his usual tactic of telling me to post on another site if I wanted to take issue with him. So I simply reiterated that he could ban me or not ban me, but he didn't have a third option of forcing me to be deferential to him and dance to his every whim. The penny will drop eventually (maybe).

    Tris : I managed to keep away for several months last year. I think the reason I keep drifting back is that, hellish though the site is at times, it's a very active forum and there are always a lot of talking points, and the words flow easier when I'm reacting to someone else's comment (rather than trying to write a blogpost from scratch). If I had any sense I probably would call it a day, but after Smithson's latest outburst I've no intention of giving him the satisfaction any time soon.