The_Rukh (the_rukh) wrote in talk_politics,

A common tactic in politics is to point out hypocrisy. If someone says 'you should do X', it is an often used tactic to say 'well you don't do X'.

Do you think this is a valid tactic? Does it discount the message if the messanger does not follow it? Is this a case of shooting the messenger?

Or do you believe this is more a case of 'those without sin cast the first stone' and that we really should discount an assertion if the messenger is not following it? Or not even the messenger but 'the other side of the isle'?


My personal opinion is two things. First, I find it very common that if someone says 'the Republicans should do so and so' the excuse is 'well the democrats, in my opinion, don't have that value or do that thing'. I think that this is no excuse. If someone says that the democrats should do so and so, talk about whether they should or shouldn't, and then move on to other organizations. We shouldn't take the relative 'its ok if they do it'. It shouldn't be an excuse. So, suffice to say, I find myself in the first category. Hypocrisy sucks and all, but it shouldn't be used to discount assertions. I think we focus on it way too much.

I often find the real hatred of 'the other side' is their perceived hypocrisy. Its not necessarily that a person hates what they're advocating, but that they're hypocrites in advocating it. Its strange, but so often I find that to be the underlying hatred of 'the other side'. Its that they're hypocrites.

Why is that such a big deal to us? Why is it such an often used tactic? If it because it's easy to paint the other side as hypocritical purely using opinion?
Tags: logic, opinion
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