Discussion of article from the Mail's columnists and RightMinds contributors
By Kreuzberger
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shyamz wrote:Unlike Hitchens, I wasn't aware that Philips had exhibited any signs of having genuine mental health problems - I thought she was just an extremely unpleasant and disagreeable person.

Personally, I've never thought of or associated people with psychiatric issues when using the word mad to describe Hichens or Mel - as it is not a word I have ever used to describe genuine sufferers. As it is used as an insult, I've only ever used it to describe people who deserve it - people with real problems don't (the worst I think that's going on with Hitch is a severe inferiority complex).
Well yes and I agree that we use seemingly mild pejorative words to question behaviour that is out of the ordinary but it comes down to context. "You paid a tenner for a kebab, are you fucking mental?" That, I would contend, is all in a day's joshing but as Abernathy pointed out, the repetitive "Not just Barking but halfway to Upminster" suffix makes a subtle difference and suggests that this is more than a temporary aberration on the part our Mel. It lets her off the hook.

That's the bit I feel least comfortable about. She's a nasty, mendacious piece of work who deserves no excuses for her behaviour.
By Kreuzberger
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The Red Arrow wrote:Would you consider the enclosed tweets those of a sane person?

Thursday, 7 August 2014
Warsi Resignation – Mad Mel Speaks
http://zelo-street.blogspot.co.uk/2014/ ... peaks.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
I'm not qualified to pass judgement on the sanity or otherwise of Philips or anyone else for that matter. Just as The Sun wasn't when it treated us all to their prognosis on Frank Bruno's condition.

That's my point though. It's all boo-hoo when the right and their media flag-bearers start flinging about their mental illness insults but some on the left (including some on here) think that this gives them carte blanche to do the same.

All this name-calling serves no purpose whatsoever. I do appreciate and fully understand that the right are scientifically proven to be incapable of cogent thought, much less rational debate. However, they don't have a monopoly on that. Anyone who on here has either been called a paedophile or a cunt will surely recognise that.

Perhaps this is a phenomenon unique to digital media; insults are merely an invitation to being ignored. Much as I applaud Fenton's research and the better part of his writing, I fail to see what he has to gain by labelling anyone mad or, dogs forbid, mongo or spazzy for that matter.
By Kreuzberger
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Daley Mayle wrote:There's sometimes too much navel gazing on here.
As a mod, you might like to expand on this. Is this a discussion forum or not?
By Malcolm Armsteen
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But getting back to Phillips there are two points.

One is that calling someone 'mad' has several possible meanings. Some are pejorative, some are not. Clearly there are ironic and humorous sues of the word as well as less loving ones, and that's the clear case with Mel. That said, Tim Fenton has been partly ironic. Whether or not it's humorous depends on how easily amused you are.

To continually call someone mad, ie deranged, mentally ill, suffering from a cognitive disorder isn't really acceptable, though, and it is correct that this eventually dilutes the message that her outpourings are more cynical (and quite possibly paranoid) than deranged. If she isn't 'mad' then she has to answer for her opinions and statements.
By Kreuzberger
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Littlejohn's brain wrote:Can I say she's frothing at the mouth?
But why would you? As Malcolm has just pointed out, she and those or her ilk need to be engaged with straight bat. She does not have rabies, probably.
By Big Rob
Kreuzberger wrote:
Daley Mayle wrote:There's sometimes too much navel gazing on here.
As a mod, you might like to expand on this. Is this a discussion forum or not?
To be fair to Daley that appeared to be an observation/opinion and not a request by a mod to change your behaviour (with an 'or else' attached).

As far as I know mods are allowed to join in discussions.

That said I disagree with Daley and will engage in some more 'navel gazing'.

From Wiki
According to research by Altemeyer, right-wing authoritarians tend to exhibit cognitive errors and symptoms of faulty reasoning. Specifically, they are more likely to make incorrect inferences from evidence and to hold contradictory ideas that result from compartmentalized thinking. They are also more likely to uncritically accept insufficient evidence that supports their beliefs, and they are less likely to acknowledge their own limitations.[14] Whether right-wing authoritarians are less intelligent than average is disputed, with Stenner arguing that variables such as high verbal ability (indicative of high cognitive capacity) have a very substantial ameliorative effect in diminishing authoritarian tendencies.[1] Measured against other factors of personality, authoritarians generally score lower on openness to experience and slightly higher on conscientiousness
Link to "The Authoritarian Specter" pdf , Altemeyer's work, is here

So many aspects of a significant proportion, not all, of right wing thinking are of psychological interest and should be rightly, no irony intended, studied as part of psychology.
By Safe_Timber_Man
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I think some people just try too hard to be seen as whiter than whiter, for want of a better phrase. They wilfully ignore the basic skills of looking at something in context and just want to be seen as morally superior. Quite why, I'm not sure. Simply giving themselves a pat on the back, probably.

We're all sick of seeing the Right and Mailites in general spewing out the "You can't say anything these days because of the PC crowd" and applying it to everything, even very serious cases of racism, for example.

This is fuelled by cherry picked examples of one or two very precious souls who just take it too far. It's the perfect ammo for the Mail. They'll find someone on Twitter who has objected to something completely harmless and called it racist and it gives them all a chance to say "See, this is what I mean about the PC brigade".

It's damaging to the cause, and also just a bit embarrassing to see people clambering over themselves to take the moral high ground over words which aren't completely black and white and can have very different contexts.

What about the use of the term "lunatic fringe" for example? Lunatic historically refereed to mental illness. Why is that's acceptable to use? It's because it's evolved, I guess. Just like other words, such as "mad".

What about using "mad" when not aimed at a specificity person? For example "The world has gone mad". Is that okay? Or is that making light of mental illness?
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