Sympathy, Schadenfreude, and Mockery

Affleck’s was the kind of middle-aged-white-male sadness that the Internet loves to mock—a mocking that depends, simultaneously, on a complete rejection of this sadness, as well as a hedging identification with it. These depressed-Affleck images can arouse both amusement and a sense of poignancy, a touch of Schadenfreude as well as something like sympathy.

The New Yorker: The Great Sadness of Ben Affleck

TIL: Dialectic vs Eristic

In the original “Republic”—the one by Plato—a distinction is made between dialectic and eristic. The former is argument made in good faith, with the goal of apprehending the truth; the latter is argument as performance, with the goal of tearing down one’s opponent.

How a Liberal Scholar of Conspiracy Theories Became the Subject of a Right-Wing Conspiracy Theory

The internet we have vs the internet we need

It is hardly possible to overrate the value . . . of placing human beings in contact with persons dissimilar to themselves.” He then admitted, with some resignation, that this describes the Internet we should want, not the Internet we have.

How a Liberal Scholar of Conspiracy Theories Became the Subject of a Right-Wing Conspiracy Theory