Inherently Immoral Jobs

Richard Feynman famously said that marketing was an inherently immoral job, because it consisted of  selling something as being better than the marketer knows it to be. I tried that argument on our VP of Marketing, back in the day, and she said that “MarCom” – Marketing Communications – was OK. Well, that still leaves the rest of marketing on the hook.

As we discussed in my piece on butter packaging, marketing claims often do amount to lies – excuse me – “deliberate excursions from the truth.”

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Argument Clinic: A Theory of Verbal Abuse

Verbal abuse and written abuse are important social tools. If you’re going to use them (or defend against them) you may as well do a good job and be properly equipped. In this series, I am going to offer some of my opinions about strategy regarding verbal abuse. To be clear: this is not a canonical treatment; I welcome your feedback – especially if it’s well-aimed and cruel.

Is this the right room for an argument?

Is this the right room for an argument?

I hope to expand this into a full series including a variety of techniques as subtle as eye-gouging and groin-kicking are in a street-fight. This section is groundwork and throat-clearing, so it’s going to be delivered more in the tone of a short lecture than as strategic or tactical maxims. As Anne Elk said, “This is a theory, which is mine. And this is it.”

We start with the 5 minute argument.

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Seceding Over Slavery – Blumrosen’s View

I didn’t want to turn my first posting on this topic into a book report on the Blumrosen’s “Slave Nation” because I find that when one does a book report, it’s easy to turn off the critical engine in one’s brain and just accept material without a close reading. “Look, I’m not going to read all of Jefferson’s correspondance…!” it’s too much.

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