Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Climate of Opinion of Blogs and Comments

There seems to be a climate of opinion which animates the comments one reads made in response to a statement of fact or opinion in this or that blog regarding the Scruggs Matter. The climate includes a whole lot of animus toward Dick Scruggs and Zach Scruggs. Not much is said about Sidney Backstrom. Tim Balducci is mentioned from time to time but he seems a bit off the general object of attention, at least for the time-being. The climate of opinion about the Scruggs is decidedly negative and mean-spirited.

It includes an obvious glee in their fall and much enthusiastic speculation as to what is to befall Dick Scruggs or Zach Scruggs in the future when it is time for them to pay, at the time of sentencing. There is much optimistic speculation of further trouble for Dick Scruggs.

The climate of opinion has another interesting aspect. The people who comment seem part of a community of like-minded people. Like-minded in animosity toward Dick Scruggs.

Also, the commenters make it a point to share the view of the author of the piece the commenters comment about. There is a sort of hero worship of the author. It is as if the commenter must tell how much he likes what David, Peter, Lotus, or other person, a newspaper reporter, is saying and how well he or she thinks of the person -- the one who brings the tidbit which satiates the emotions of the worshipper.

In one his journal entries Leo Tolstoy said this:
To love means to desire that which the beloved object desires. The objects of love desire opposing things, and therefore, we can only love that which desires one and the same thing. But that which desires one and the same thing is God.
December, 1895, Wikisource.

There is a love of sorts among the author and the commenters, a connection. A kindred spirit. The climate of opinion is an expression of the love of that connection. There is a solidarity. In this solidarity there is a sense the commenters have found their god. That is to say, one can feel right, strong, as having place, because there are others who share in certain objects of desire. In this case the desires are of mean-spiritedness toward Dick Scruggs and pleasure in his downfall.