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Today’s Scarlet Letter is ‘Conspiracy Theorist’

It’s time for us to decide if we really want a free Internet. Certainly many of us do. Some of us think we do, but we don’t really understand what this entails or what the consequences might be. Then there is a rising tide of increasingly loud voices who do not believe in an unfettered, level playing field for human ideas, who are frightened by the radical extremes of people’s opinions, and who would seek to control thought itself. And some of these folks would like to fundamentally change our online lives as we know them.

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Are insults an effective means of argument in that they can actually change people’s minds?

Abusive ad hominem attacks are one of the most common logical fallacies of partisan politics

The duopoloy-based partisan hate-fest in the United States is only getting more intense in Obama’s second term. Sadly, what passes for “debate” is little more than people hurling back and forth abuse from the base of their reptilian brains.

What I don’t think a lot of folks realize is that the logical fallacies present within all this aggressive and defensive rhetoric do little to change people’s opinions. With that in mind, I took a moment on Twitter to air my frustration. The following tweets in this Storify article show some of the resulting exchanges:

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