Quote of the day—Ryan Holiday

There is a reason that the weak are drawn to snark while the strong simply say what they mean. Snark makes the speaker feel strength they know deep down they do not posses. It shields their insecurity and makes them feel like they are in control. Snark is the ideal intellectual position. It can criticize but it cannot be criticized.

Ryan Holiday
2013
Trust Me, I’m Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator
[This is a bit of an oversimplification. You can say what you mean, have a strong position, and still be snarky. But in many cases, as exhibited by the endless cases of Markley’s Law, Holiday is absolutely correct.—Joe]

6 thoughts on “Quote of the day—Ryan Holiday

  1. I prefer my petulance when someone tries to take away my God-given right of self defense and assign that responsibility to the government that frankly, does not know which end of the firearm the bullet exits. Just ask any gun control politician about the basics of firearms and prepare to be shocked by their ignorance.

    The Second Amendment is my right so I can resist despotism. It is not negotiable so I am insulting to those that think it is a right that is up for discussion and abridgement.

  2. Although I have often used snark (or what I call “blistering sarcasm”), and been proud of it even, I recognize that it serves no purpose except to evoke useless emotion. We sometimes seek out snark (we’re talking about judgment, if you want to be precise and put it into historical perspective with all its moral implications), as it makes us feel better, but like smoking crack it has no long term positive effects. And like crack, you may love it, it might make you feel awesome, and all that will come out of it in the long run is pain, and the need for more of it to help take the pain or boredom away.

    Now you’re a sort of addict. Your original social cause becomes secondary to that of getting the good feelings, the high, of being better than “those other guys” and putting them in their place. No one’s mind is changed, far from it, but it feels good and you get accolades for it, and so you keep after it. Now you’re both a pusher and an addict, and if the cause of the other side is to divide people, and to reduce the level of actual communication, then you’re essentially working for the other. You’ve been flipped and don’t know it. You’ll lash out at your own if it means getting that high, and anyway you’ll become genuinely angry at your own side. This happened to the Republican Party long ago. Now maybe it’s happened to you too. (And by “you” I mean anyone reading this).

    This process is well-known, and studied, and practiced by Progressives, communists and other advocates of coercion. They know all about it even if you’re bloody clueless. Our resident agent provocateur, ubu, knows it instinctively and practices it fairly well, for example.

    So let the coercives snark all day. We have right on our side and we don’t need anything to distract from the message of human liberty and justice.

  3. “You can say what you mean, have a strong position, and still be snarky.”

    I think you misspelled “Tam”.

  4. “Rudeness is the weak man’s imitation of strength.”

    – Eric Hoffer

    (That doesn’t mean that strong people are incapable of being rude. But if you’re strong, you have other tools at your disposal; you need not use what the weak use when they have nothing else.)

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