I’ll try to keep this short.  In my mind, that one rule at Booman means that 1) we don’t personally attack other members of the blogosphere, and 2) we don’t issue accusations that could sully the other person’s reputation, particularly if the accuations are unsubstantiated.

BooMan and I are very easy-going about enforcement of the rule.  My favored way is to write a personal note to the person — and I also do that if someone has written a comment that indicates they’re very upset about something.  

BooMan always — always — communicates with people at length, both in comments and in e-mails before he takes any action.

There have been almost no bannings.  They are a last resort.

More below:
In the instant case, there have been innumerable attempts at communication, some of them not very successful…. i.e., no reply was received or sometimes the reply was very cold or was very sarcastic.

That’s frustrating because, when I write to someone, I’m not trying to put them on the spot.  I’m trying to understand, and to communicate with the person.  When a private communication like that is rebuffed, it’s difficult to know what else to do.

In the instant case, the person has been informed many times — and in very clear language — that 1) it is not okay to call other people names, and 2) that it’s not okay to accuse other bloggers of being in cahoots to make a lot of money (“The ONLY REASON people are sucking up to that twit [Kos] is because he seems to have been given the reigns to pass out potlitical favors in terms of Blogads for the upcoming elections…”).  

We wish that BooTrib made money!  How we wish. And that’s a hurtful accusation that’s difficult to refute (i.e., it’s like “when did you stop beating your wife?”).

Anyway, when angry, accusatory conversations take over a blog, the atmosphere becomes unattractive to anyone who might like to join.  It’s also very stressful.  And, because the attacks focus on other bloggers, instead of our bigger issues such as Bushco, we get consumed by hatred of each other instead of trying to get along and get after Buscho.

I wouldn’t want to be around a blog like that.  Nor would most people who mostly want to discuss politics and news.

BY THE WAY:  I have left the door open.  I did not slam the door.  The first response I got was not very promising, but I’m willing to wait and to listen.

At this point, though, I can’t take into consideration what you are writing.  I have to consider what she writes to me.  That’s what will count. That’s the only way this will be worked out.

Lastly:  We try.  Sometimes we fail. Sometimes we constructively influence people’s style of communicating on the blog.  

I realize that some people will always gravitate to the personal discussions, particularly those where they think someone’s been done wrong. And a very few people — but only a very few — gravitate to discussions that tumble into negativity. That’s human nature.

But, most of us tend to gravitate to the people who are the most constructive in terms of their political discourse and their rational, thoughtful responses to other bloggers here.  We don’t gravitate to those who call others names.  It’s not fair behavior, and it’s not helpful.  It’s not adult or rational.  We need to be as adult and as rational as we can be. We have incredibly important races coming up in ’06 and ’08.  That is where our energy and time should be focused.

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