Today in Idiots: EVERYONE

Posted: July 1, 2009 in Braak

Haha, not really.  But I’m going to take a minute here and bitch about something.  I hang out, periodically, in places like io9, where people talk about science fiction and movies &c., and I’ve noticed a recurring theme:  everyone keeps pissing me the fuck off.

Not everyone.  Just a handful of people, who write with a handful of sort of rote responses to any kind of argument or discussion.  These are not trolling, per se, where the intention is to just make everyone angry (pathetically easy to achieve in my case), and they aren’t specifically counter-arguments.  They’re more like anti-arguments–things that people say primarily for the purpose of curtailing discussion, usually because they’re embarrassed about liking something stupid.  Worst offenders, after the jump.

It’s not Proust, so who gives a shit?

This guy (and his philosophically-related cousin, “I just wanted to see some tits”) is apparently commenting on a science-fiction website for NO REASON.  Here’s this huge complex computer code that enables us to talk to each other about things that we’re interested in, and this fucker chimes in to tell us that if it’s not Proust then it isn’t even worth talking about.

Well, motherfucker, you know what ELSE isn’t Proust?  Everything.  Every god-damn thing isn’t Proust.  What is this shit?  Literary analysis is like being good at running.  Let’s say you’re a good runner.  Well, some races are marathons (Remembrance of Things Past) and some races are not (Deathstalker).  If you are a good marathon runner, and someone asks if you want to go run a 5k, do you say, “Fuck that shit.  If it’s not at least twenty miles, then I don’t want to hear about it”? Let’s say you’re a chef, and you’re good at making fancy food–does this mean you never make sandwiches?  Do you say, “Fuck sandwiches, for me it’s a souffle or NOTHING”?

Well, then you’re a cock.  Get the fuck out of here with your bullshit.  No one is impressed by the fact that you read everything on your Freshman Lit reading list.  We ALL had Freshman Lit reading lists; most of us read everything on them.  If we wanted to talk about fucking Proust, we’d be on the Proust website talking about it.

I Just Wanted to See Some Tits:

These guys are out in force to defend Transformers:  Revenge of the Fallen.  Every reviewer that panned it as being completely fucking retarded is immediately subjected to a wave of comments that go, “I just wanted to see Megan Fox’s tits, and some giant robots.  Stop criticising it!”  Mostly, this is because they liked the movie, and calling the movie stupid makes them feel stupid for liking it.

Well you know what, dummy?  You ARE stupid.  Live it, love it, own it, and stop fucking talking to me about it.  You just want to see some tits, fine; go lock yourself up in your bedroom and watch some porn.  Actually better, you know what?  Take an icepick and stick it in your fucking brain, because that’s the life that you want to live:  you would be happier if you were lobotomized.  Someone will make you potato salad you can eat with a spork, you’ll get all the vicodin you want, and you’ll fulfill all your dumbest fantasies staring at Megan Fox in her short shorts.

Do you think it’s admirable that you can take your standards, bury them in the ground, and then shit on them?  It’s not.  No 0ne thinks you’re cool for just wanting to see some tits, and then getting to see them.

You’re Talking About A Realistic Plot in a Movie With Giant Robots!?!?:

Here’s another misguided fucker who thinks there’s some kind of glamour in being a moron.  Yes, idiot, we’re talking about a realistic plot in a movie with giant robots.  “Giant robots” doesn’t mean anything can happen–it just means that GIANT ROBOTS can happen.  Everything ELSE is still supposed to make sense.

Here’s how I can prove it:  remember how much you liked Transformers:  Revenge of the Fallen?  Imagine if, when Shia the Beef got the Allspark, he turned into a nuclear marmot that destroyed the Decepticons by vomiting sharp-edged homonyms at them.  Tell me you wouldn’t say that that didn’t make sense.


Everyone Shut Up and Let Buying Decide:

You run into this guy every time you want to criticise Marvel’s porntastic sexist bullshit Marvel Divas series.  “There’s no reason to criticise.  Female fans won’t buy it, and then they’ll stop making it,” he says.  This person thinks that the Free Market ideology can stand in for him having a personality.  He doesn’t have to like anything, or think about anything, his culture can just be determined by what people buy.

Say what you want to about the Free Market, but one thing that’s absolutely required about it is INFORMED CONSUMERS.  Bitching about things we don’t like is what makes the Free Market work.  In fact, it makes it work BETTER, because now Marvel can find out if an idea is going to fail horribly BEFORE THEY ACTUALLY MAKE A COMIC BOOK OUT IT.  ZOMG!!!

This is basically the same principle as, “You can’t say anything about Eliza Dushku because she’s successful” guy, and fuck him.  You know what’s not a god-damn measure of anything?  Success in the Free Market.

The Free Market can’t fucking tell the difference between Dark Knight and Transformers 2.  The Free Market has given us TWENTY SIX MOVIES featuring Marlon Wayons.

Here’s a crazy thought:  maybe people should decide what they think is good before they buy it!

[Plot Element X] Exists, Therefore This Movie Sucks:

To be fair, I only ever met one guy that said this, but he REALLY pissed me off.  “Close Encounters sucks because it has flying saucers in it,” was his position, and it made me so furious that I didn’t even know where to begin.  Here’s the thing:  you can hate anything you want, but if you’ve got some arbitrary rule like, “If it’s got vampires in it, I don’t like it,” or “I won’t watch anything directed by Jim Jarmusch,” then shut the fuck up.  You aren’t adding to the conversation, you’re just trying to get attention by being a neurotic jackass.

Everyone’s Entitled to Their Opinion:

No, they fucking aren’t.

This is easy to confuse with “Multiple Valid Interpretations,” which is a good condition.  In fact, Erin repeatedly confuses once notably confused my “Multiple Valid Interpretations” argument with “Everyone’s Entitle to Their Opinion,” which is crazy, because clearly I mean that I am entitled to MY opinion (particularly on subjects relating to:  swords, Wolverine, the theater), and that maybe Erin is entitled to HIS opinion (I assume on some things), but that doesn’t mean everyone is entitled to their opinions.

Here’s an example:  let’s say you think Eliza Dushku is a great actress.  Well, you’re fucking wrong.  Don’t cry about it, just shut the hell up.


So, that makes me feel better, actually.  I feel like I got to express some anger.  Anyway, don’t permit any of these people to talk in any kind of public forum.  They are bullshit people.

  1. Erin says:

    @Braak: “In fact, Erin repeatedly confuses my “Multiple Valid Interpretations” argument with “Everyone’s Entitle to Their Opinion”….

    Good Lord, Braak; what in Hell are you talking about?

  2. braak says:

    Specifically, I was talking about your response to my comment on your Superman post, when I pointed out that there was more than one valid interpretation to Superman, and that mine is just the one that I happened to like, and your response was all, “Oh, what is this everyone’s entitled to his opinion hippie bullshit?”

    I guess, to be fair, since I can only think of one example off-hand, “repeatedly” isn’t really accurate.

  3. V.I.P. Referee says:

    Braakish (\’braa-kish\) :

    1: A mixture of fresh perspective and salty language.

    (Unless I got the pronunciation wrong… )

    Indeed; worn and ineffective dialogue methods should be retired. Who taught everyone this stuff, anyway?

  4. Man. What did giant robots and tits ever do to you?

  5. Hsiang says:

    Slow news day, eh?

    Nah, I can see how these knuckle-draggers would offend a highly intelligent, sensitive, and way bitchy individual such as yourself. I’m not as bright or educated as you but I’ve had at least a decade more of idiots than you have and I’ve come to this conclusion: we will never stop them.

    Just ain’t gonna happen. There’s more of them there there are of us. If they were educable, they wouldn’t be idiots. I’m not saying to suffer them gladly or just mellow out, dood (although the zazen thing is probably a good move on your part). Just remember that your energies combating stupidity can be expended to more worthy windmills than than a conversation about giant robots. You of course already have realized this as you comment less frequently on io9 than you used to.

  6. braak says:

    I am dreaming the impossible dream, Hsiang.

  7. Hsiang says:

    Well okay then. Just stop mugging itinerant dentists for their hats.

  8. “Anyway, don’t permit any of these people to talk in any kind of public forum. They are bullshit people.”

    But how will we know they are bullshit people until we allow them to express an opinion?

    We always knew there were morons in the world, but before the Internet we only had knowledge of the ones who somehow impinged on our regular lives. Now, theoretically, we can have some kind of contact with EVERYONE, EVERY DAY. I don’t think it’s contributing to society’s overall mental health.

  9. braak says:

    @Jefferson: It’s definitely not contributing to mine.

    @Hsiang: NEVER.

  10. Amanda says:

    Thank you for writing this.

    And thank GOD my comment on io9 didn’t make it into this blog *wink*

  11. Jeff Holland says:

    Two things:

    1) Re: “[element x] exists and therefore the movie sucks.” I do have a rule, along those lines – it is called, “Cameron Crowe directed it, and therefore the movie sucks.” I developed this theory by watching a lot of Cameron Crowe movies, and each time being absolutely regretful for having wasted two hours. So this is a rule I have.
    A benefit of this rule? If an online conversation ever turns to Cameron Crowe, I can LEAVE THE CONVERSATION. Because I cannot convince the entire internet that Cameron Crowe sucks, and I cannot be convinced that I “should really just give ‘Almost Famous’ a shot.” (NO! If I hate all his other movies for the exact same reason, why would I enjoy what I understand is the apotheosis of his Cameron-Crowe-isms?! Anyway.)

    2) Marvel Divas: I remember hearing about this, thinking, “Woo, bad idea,” seeing the J. Scott Campbell boobs-aplenty cover, and then promptly forgetting about it.
    But just now I saw a preview for it, and…huh. You very literally cannot judge this book by its cover (or its awful name):

  12. Amanda says:

    @Holland: Aw, wow. I really really liked “Almost Famous.” And I do consider myself to have good/intelligent taste in movies…What are some of his other films?

  13. braak says:

    @Jeff Holland: That is what makes you not a bullshit person. You have a crazy rule, but you don’t feel like you’ve got to tell people about it. Like, I don’t like Constantine for purely personal and arbitrary reasons. So, when a discussion about Constantine comes up, I stay out of it.

    Also, I don’t know. It still looks pretty stupid. And I’m not satisfied that Sex in the City isn’t some sexist bullshit in the first place.

  14. Jeff Holland says:

    @Amanda: See, this is why I’m always hesitant on Crowe – people whose opinions I might generally agree with still like him. But going down the list of his movies:
    Fast Times at Ridgemont High
    Say Anything
    Singles (which I have not seen and can’t comment on)
    Jerry Maguire
    Vanilla Sky

    I just, like, tense up…okay, for instance, yeah yeah, Lloyd Dobbler, what a dreamboat, THERE IS NO PROBLEM IN THIS MOVIE. It is a movie devoid of any conflict, or dilemma. What is the problem? Her dad is in trouble with the IRS and so he doesn’t want her dating? In what sense is that enough to hang a movie on?

    All his movies have this kind of naval-gazing, problems-manufactured-by-characters’-pinhead-brains quality, along with such an ambling, “no, no real urgency here, but don’t you just want to hang out with these people?” vibe. BUT NO I DO NOT.

    (On the other hand, I love Jim Jarmusch movies, which you could also say are naval-gazing, ambling, and problem-free. So…what the hell do I know.)

  15. Amanda says:

    @Holland: Hmm, Not “Say Anything,” either, huh? I can see how that film might not be worth dubbing “important,” but “Almost Famous” at least chronicles a certain period in (rock) history that I find very interesting…But I wouldn’t say the central conflict of “Say Anything” is her father either…That’s just incidental, actually, to the larger journey she has to take: IMO the movie is more about her becomming her own person and transitioning out of her illusionary high school/childhood world into Life with a capital “L.” He helps her start to become her own person, which is a very personal and relatable story to me…Especially how she travels to Paris in the end though she is afraid to fly, she does so w/o her parents, etc…..
    At any rate I do think the father/tax fraud storyline does feel tacked on and unnecessary- as though the writers/brains behind the story were afraid that her just needing to become her own person is not motivation (or interesting) enough to go against her parents’ wishes and literally fly away…

  16. Outlaw Vern has mustered the same arguments as you in demolishing Transformers 2.

  17. K. Holland says:

    Wow. Glad to see that none of my comments at io9 made it into this post. It’s probably good that you don’t go over to any of io9’s sister sites and try to read the comments. Your mental health will thank you.

  18. Jeff Holland says:

    @amanda: Perfectly valid interpretation. I think I like picking on “Say Anything” because, aside from “Jerry Maquire” (which I think garners a lot of negativity because of Tom Cruise’s presence, rather than with the story itself), it’s the one I can actually pick out concrete problems I have with it. My feelings for “Fast Times” can be summed up thusly: “I don’t…what was…man, I just don’t care what’s – hey, Phoebe Cates! – but no, I just…hrmm.”

    So I’m cheating a little by choosing to pick on something I can at least articulate.

    Anyway, people can go ahead and enjoy Cameron Crowe movies if they like, and I will take it as a personal tic on my end, like my inexplicable hatred of scalloped potatoes. Unless, of course, you say you liked “Vanilla Sky,” in which case I will RAIN HELLFIRE DOWN UPON YOU!

    (Woo – just as I typed this is started pouring down rain. The VERY EARTH ITSELF! agrees that “Vanilla Sky” sucks!)

    As to Transformers 2: Everyone needs to go to I’ve felt that over the last couple of years, Ebert’s radar’s been a little bit off, but man, when he out-and-out hates something, it’s just glorious. He loathed Transformers so much that his one-star review wasn’t enough – he went and wrote a long-ass blog to further explain how damn much he hated it. It’s awesome.

  19. Amanda says:

    Well I think it’s pretty clear that you and I could just never get along- we are too contrary to each other. The scalloped potatoes bit sealed the deal.

    But I’ve never seen “Vanilla Sky” because I think it looked frikin horrendous- hmm, is Tom Cruise a curious constant here, or what? And “Fast Times…” = yet another voluntary ommission from my repertoire, though your summary of it was delicious.

    And I read that Ebert review too- yet another tasty little morsel of intelligent hatred.

  20. Tad says:

    Holland definitely has potato issues. It took several years of mocking abuse to convince him to so much as try mashed potatoes.

  21. Amanda says:

    @Tad: Wow. What a sobering revelation….The suffering he must endure with such a horrific condition…To live with a potato aversion is unthinkable and tragic, as they are one of the earth’s most precious source of deliciousness….And to combine with cheese is to glimpse heaven itself….

  22. Jeff Holland says:

    Not ALL potatoes, just mashed, and scalloped, and au gratin. And twice-baked. And…probably there are other fancy-pants ways to cook ’em, that I’d probably not be down with.

    Single-baked, fried, hashed brown…these are styles I am happy with.

  23. Amanda says:

    *breathless* ohmygosh those are the best kindssss- scalloped, twice-baked….*drools*

  24. Tad says:

    Wait, now you don’t like twice-baked potatos, either? How can you justify that? Its just like a regular baked potato, made twice as good, and with some cheese mixed in!!

    You need some sort of potato rehabilitation camp. What if Ramsay has some sort of twice-baked potato recipe, would you be adverse to trying that, too?

  25. Jeff Holland says:

    Yes – but based on last night’s recipe flub, I think Ramsay potatoes might be beyond me.

    Or I just left the oil on too long.

  26. V.I.P Referee says:

    “Constantine” : Yes, for purely creative and stylistic reasons.
    “Cameron Crowe” : No. His strongest work, “Vanilla Sky”, was a flimsy imitation of someone else’s better work.
    “Sex and the City” : No, no, no, no no.

  27. Moff says:

    It’s funny that Singles is the one you haven’t seen, Holland, ’cause I think maybe that’s the one worth seeing. Anyway, I recall enjoying it quite a bit.

  28. Jeff Holland says:

    I…kinda like “Constantine.” And that’s coming from someone who A) has a long-standing love of “Hellblazer,” and B) understands that Keanu Reeves is not so much with the acting. Perhaps I just think, “Well…coulda been worse!” It could’ve been Nic Cage.

    I should probably give Singles a go. Give the guy one last shot.

  29. braak says:

    Everybody likes Constantine! I am the only one that doesn’t, and this is basically just because it wasn’t EXACTLY THE WAY I WANTED IT TO BE.

    However. I can recognize that this is a silly reason to not like it.

  30. braak says:

    Also, it’s going to be hilarious next week when you write “Why the hell did I listen to you people? WHY DO I KEEP GIVING CAMERON CROWE A CHANCE!?!?”

  31. V.I.P. Referee says:

    I kept giving Cameron Crowe a chance because for a while, he was really looking like Oscar Wilde—and by association, I had high hopes for him. Then I realized, “Oscar Wilde probably would’ve made fun of Cameron Crowe, had they been contemporaries”. From that point on, all was lost.

  32. […] of you who have been paying attention will recognize this Law as one of the Bullshit Positions that I illustrated, here at TQP, some time ago:  specifically, “I Just Wanted to See Some […]

  33. […] are all bullshit positions:  It Isn’t Proust, I Just Wanted to See Some Tits, You’re Talking About Realism, and […]

  34. […] [Disclaimer:  Tribe of Fools' production of Dracula was sold out for every performance.  What does that mean in terms of my criticism?  Nothing.  Hammer Films built an entire movie studio on the idea that people would come to see a movie with Dracula in it, no matter what, and "it made money therefore it must be good" is a Bullshit Position.] […]

  35. “Someone will make you potato salad you can eat with a spork, you’ll get all the vicodin you want, and you’ll fulfill all your dumbest fantasies staring at Megan Fox in her short shorts.”

    That doesn’t sound too bad.

    @Holland: To be fair, Almost Famous did suck. You might be able to convince me that my enjoyment of Say Anything… has more to do with me than the film, but you can’t convince me Singles is any worse than mildly above average. And, well, as he’s only made about a half dozen films, not many people are going to be disturbed by your stance.

  36. Blaze Tarnen says:

    Okay found it – and it IS epic, but it doesn’t specifically talk about the “Why are you analyzing it, why can’t you just let it be” thing that was the crux of “Moff’s Law” — granted there ARE similarities, but I’ve ranted on this also, in slightly different terms, many many times.

    I see why this could be construed to be a parent of Moff’s Law – but his did contain elements that aren’t here even as it contained similarities.

  37. Josh says:

    I believe it was considered a “parent” or inspiration simply because Moff read it a few months before concocting his own (ADMITTEDLY AMAZING) rant, and after the fact realized it had very likely unconsciously influenced his thought process — not because the sentiment itself is strikingly original.

    Anyway, Moff and Braak also invented the calculus independently of each other, so this is par for the course.

  38. braak says:


    I think I am Leibniz in this analogy.

  39. Blaze Tarnen says:

    Your entire post, “I believe it was considered a parent…” through “Moff and Braak also invented…” was all in third person; at first glance I assumed someone called “Josh” was telling me his thoughts on it.

    Lack of sleep and the pretty lights caused by the drops they use at the eye doctor’s office caused me to be a bit slow on the uptake. (Have to have an excuse after all, and the “my eyes are scrunched up and there are rainbows… everywhere! seemed apt) You *are* Moff aka Josh Wimmer. I’m not *that* new; why speak of yourself in the third person?

    TQP humor? And it was very good – nice thing about writing in third person, you can laud yourself unreservedly. 😉

    I understand the change; marketing professional quality editing services requires a “real” name, rather than a user name.

    That, and the ability to discuss yourself. O.o

    @Braak – this site needs less testosterone and more LOTR. For that matter, every site needs more LOTR and generally speaking less testosterone… Are you sure you want to Leibniz? You have to live with Gottfried as a first name, and really scary hair.

  40. braak says:

    My hair is already pretty scary.

  41. Moff says:

    @Blaze: It was a CUNNING RUSE. I thought perhaps if you DIDN’T figure it out, you would defend the honor and originality of Moff — which would be awesome — and then I WOULD REVEAL MYSELF — which would be EVEN MORE AWESOME.

    But then it turned out it wasn’t that cunning, after all.

    How great would it be if we could travel back in time, and it turned out Leibniz’s voice was basically identical to Gilbert Gottfried’s?


  42. […] BENE:  Anyone who wants to comment here must familiarize themselves with the Bullshit Positions, as well as my previous arguments about Representations of Women in (Mostly Superhero) Comics. I […]

  43. I feel like I am a better person after reading this. Finally, someone out there gets it. No, you aren’t super smart because you spout out random conversation stoppers. I think you can add people who watch movies and like them purely because they are box office hits/golden globe winners/ whatever. That’s not the movie you like, that’s keeping up with the Joneses. Urgh.

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