Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 01/25/2021
When I read something—in the New York Times or Wall Street Journal or a newsletter, or online—that I don’t agree with, I either move on because there’s no reason to get upset, or I write a letter to the editor (which I have success with about 50% of the time), or I write something of my own views in one of my publications, like this one.
I don’t unsubscribe or threaten anyone. I think F. Scott Fitzgerald observed that a first-rate intelligence can hold two competing ideas in mind at one time and still function. When I wrote about the Capitol riot, there were hundreds of people who wrote supporting my views, two who calmly offered other views, and two who opened with the fact that I’m “ignorant” and I’d lost them as subscribers (to a free newsletter!). When I mentioned how well the inauguration was handled and the impressive nature of Biden’s speech, a reader wrote to tell me it was offensive to everyone for me to “bring up politics.”
Bear in mind that I don’t feel I’ve had a successful day unless I’m irritating someone, somewhere, but nevertheless there’s something disturbing about a mentality that says, “If you disagree with me you’re ignorant.” It turns out that Galileo was right, and threatening to burn him at a stake didn’t change that fact.
A while ago, another irate reader told me while moiling that he had six of my books in his office and he was going to throw them all out to “teach me a lesson.”
“Wait!” I said. “If you really want to teach me a lesson, buy six more and throw all twelve out!!”
Narcissism is not about self love. It’s a clinical trait that belies a deep sense of emptiness, low self-esteem, emotional detachment, self-loathing, extreme problems with intimacy.—Drew Pinsky
I always cheer up immensely if an attack is particularly wounding because I think, well, if they attack one personally, it means they have not a single political argument left.—Margaret Thatcher
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