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How Free is Free Republic
kuro5hin.org ^ | Mon Dec 29th, 2003 at 09:53:55 PM EST | felixrayman

Posted on 12/31/2003 12:12:28 PM PST by visagoth

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To: Rebelbase
If "Promoting [a] left wing site" gets threads pulled we should all stop posting from the mainstream media.
151 posted on 01/04/2004 5:18:22 AM PST by Behind Liberal Lines
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To: OldFriend
Jim Robinson, thanks for all you do for all of us.
I just recently joined Free Republic and couldn't imagine a day without reading all the great articles and posts.

This forum is an asset to Republicans everywhere!

And a great place to vent about some issues that we may find upsetting. ;)

Everyone has treated me (my posts) with the utmost respect even when we disagree ;)
152 posted on 01/04/2004 6:31:48 AM PST by stopem
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To: visagoth
If we are going to pick nits on this dollar amount, it is entirely possible that Lake County and Sangamon County have larger budgets than DuPage. And certainly Cook County has the largest budget in the state of Illinois.

Finally, there are various funds paid by the federal government directly to the states that would not show up in an individual county budget. So, if you compare apples to apples, there may ve 10-15 counties in Illinois with larger budgets than Vermont.

And if you've read this far and you're still awake, if Howard Dean was mayor of Milwaukee, that would probably mean he bowls and eats brats, which would make him a better person.

153 posted on 01/04/2004 6:41:33 AM PST by White Eagle
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To: bolobaby
If facts were misquoted in an article it would be due to the error of the author, not an error by a FR poster or FR itself.
I'm sure there are articles on the other sites which have inaccuracies in them as well. It is the nature of the beast. At least some of us have figured out we can't trust the 'propaganda machine', uh, media to spoon feed us.
Anyone who has followed the threads on Terri Schiavo knows well that news articles can be full of inaccuracies. This is but one example.
154 posted on 01/04/2004 7:03:32 AM PST by tutstar (Jesus is the reason for the season! <((--><)
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To: Jim Robinson
"Free Republic is not a liberal debating society."

Apologzing for the crudeness beforehand, I think 'debating' should be struck and replaced with 'mental masturbation' to provide accuracy.

155 posted on 01/04/2004 2:14:15 PM PST by Tench_Coxe
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To: Tench_Coxe
I think 'debating' should be struck and replaced with 'mental masturbation' to provide accuracy.

I call it intellectual onanism.

156 posted on 01/04/2004 2:15:16 PM PST by NeoCaveman (Happy New Year)
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To: Tench_Coxe
If we allowed these people to take over FR, it'd soon be unusable.

Example:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1051438/posts#4
157 posted on 01/04/2004 3:04:41 PM PST by Jim Robinson (No man's life, liberty, or property are safe while the congress is in session. ~ Mark Twain)
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To: Owl_Eagle
LOL AIDS monkey???
158 posted on 01/04/2004 9:31:50 PM PST by cyborg
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To: KellyAdmirer
FR could easily be taken over by liberals or vile bigoted skinheads, who to me are family separated at birth. I am glad there is some moderation, but would like more ZOT threads to be left open longer for more viking kitty fun.
159 posted on 01/04/2004 9:33:50 PM PST by cyborg
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To: IronJack
What makes you think that Free Republic champions free speech?

If the management didn't support an open exchange of ideas and demanded orthodoxy in the views of all posters, very few of us would be here. If FR isn't about ideas and debate, I don't know what is.

160 posted on 01/05/2004 2:31:58 PM PST by Modernman (Providence protects idiots, drunkards, children and the United States of America- Otto von Bismarck)
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To: fourhorsemen
I haven't been here long, but I've seen a lot of folks claiming to be conservatives who do nothing but denounce our President, thus in effect proclaiming their support for Howard Dean and Hillary Clinton.

Disagreeing with the President does not equal supporting Dean or Hillary. Conservatives are not supposed to be slavish followers of the party line. When the president screws up, people should call him on it.

I don't trust any government enough to give it immunity from criticism.

161 posted on 01/05/2004 2:40:43 PM PST by Modernman (Providence protects idiots, drunkards, children and the United States of America- Otto von Bismarck)
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To: Modernman
Read the mission statement on the home page. Nowhere does it say that FR welcomes any and all opinions. It clearly states that it champions CONSERVATIVE causes.

The management of Free Republic owes you exactly nothing, including tolerance. Every one of us here posts by the grace of the owners and their appointed agents.

162 posted on 01/05/2004 3:42:50 PM PST by IronJack
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To: Modernman
Disagreeing with the President does not equal supporting Dean or Hillary. Conservatives are not supposed to be slavish followers of the party line. When the president screws up, people should call him on it.

I agree, and I've been critical of the President's decision to negotiate with terrorists (e.g. Khaddafi). But where I would argue that people go over the line is when they proclaim that they aren't going to vote for him, or they will vote 3rd party, in effect casting a vote for Howard Dean.

163 posted on 01/05/2004 7:02:29 PM PST by fourhorsemen
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To: IronJack
The management of Free Republic owes you exactly nothing, including tolerance.

The management is not that dumb. If they felt that they owed the posters nothing, the number of posters would soon dry up, as would the donations that keep FR going.

FReepers have the most important power when it comes to this site: we can vote with our (electronic) feet and with our wallets. The management has to respect the wishes of the posters, or else this site would turn into a virtual ghost town. Jim Rob and company seem to get that, even though you don't seem to.

164 posted on 01/06/2004 6:44:27 AM PST by Modernman (Providence protects idiots, drunkards, children and the United States of America- Otto von Bismarck)
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To: Modernman
The management has to respect the wishes of the posters

Hogwash. The management doesn't have to respect diddly. This is a private venture, and one Jim runs for his own purposes, namely those stated explicitly on the home page. That simple English is what YOU don't seem to get.

I've seen my share of bloodbaths around here when people start dictating policy to the ownership. But feel free to add your name to the roll of martyrs who have demanded their imagined "rights." It might be good for a chuckle or two before you hie off to Zotland.

165 posted on 01/06/2004 9:52:46 AM PST by IronJack
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To: IronJack
Hogwash. The management doesn't have to respect diddly. This is a private venture, and one Jim runs for his own purposes, namely those stated explicitly on the home page. That simple English is what YOU don't seem to get.

Sigh. Let me try to explain this using simple words. Free Republic is much like a corporation selling a product or service. There is no rule or law telling the company what kind of product it must sell. There is no law telling the company that it needs to listen to the wishes of its customers. Ford is free to sell a Model T Ford, in black only, if it so wished. However, Ford's customers are free to go buy from Toyota, instead.

Still with me? Okay- Free Republic is not a democracy, granted. However, it is clear that the owners do not have the resources to keep this site running without we the FReepers and our donations. In addition, if there were no FReepers because the administration had zotted or alienated everyone, this whole endeavour would be kind of pointless.

Where does that leave the owners? They have to walk a tight rope between getting rid of disruptors and trolls, on the one hand, and being responsive enough to the demands of the FReeper community so that people don't leave this site en masse, on the other. They seem to do that job pretty well, since they seem to get the point I'm making here- none of us "need" Free Republic. There are other conservative websites out there. We could all go post elsewhere. However, FR does a very good job of adapting itself to the needs of its constituency.

I've seen my share of bloodbaths around here when people start dictating policy to the ownership.

You miss the point, again. One FReeper cannot change policy around here. If enough people are unhappy though, the owners have to listen to their concerns- not because of any law or rule, but for the same reason Ford has to listen to car buyers. No customers= no Ford. No Freepers= no FR.

The owners here seem to understand these issues, even though you may not.

166 posted on 01/06/2004 11:35:54 AM PST by Modernman (Providence protects idiots, drunkards, children and the United States of America- Otto von Bismarck)
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To: Modernman
Your error lies in assuming that this site must continue, or that, like Henry Ford, Jim Robinson stands to profit if it does or suffer if it does not. Neither of those is true. Free Republic is NOTHING like a corporation selling a product or service. Jim has said many times in the past that if FR folds, it folds and he moves on to other things. He has also said that if the site does not make enough to support itself, he will shut it down.

Those two realities utterly destroy your argument, since the site can now be a unilateral extension of Jim Robinson's values and either survive or fail on its own merits, irrespective of the marketplace. While a failure may be a plebiscite on those values, it does not cause Jim Robinson any hardship. Neither does the site's continuation carry any benefit, especially if it runs counter to Jim's own beliefs.

Save your laments for yourself. It is YOUR comprehension that is coming up sadly short.

167 posted on 01/06/2004 12:14:25 PM PST by IronJack
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To: IronJack
Your error lies in assuming that this site must continue

I don't assume that at all- FR need not continue any more than Ford needs to continue to sell cars. If FR folds, something else will pop up.

Free Republic is NOTHING like a corporation selling a product or service

Why not? An idea or ideology is no different than a car or washing machine- if you can't get enough people to buy it, it's a failure. If Jim Rob can't get enough people to agree with his viewpoints to such an extent that they're willing to donate to FR, his viewpoints and this site are a failure.

While a failure may be a plebiscite on those values, it does not cause Jim Robinson any hardship

Ummm.... so, why does he bother with this site, then? If FR serves no purpose to JR, whether material, spiritual or intellectual, why spend so much effort on it?

Neither does the site's continuation carry any benefit, especially if it runs counter to Jim's own beliefs.

This statement makes no sense. Why would anyone put so much effort into something like this if itheld no benefit to them?

No, I think you miss the symbiotic nature of FR and the Freeper community. Neither can survive as an entity without the other.

168 posted on 01/06/2004 12:33:38 PM PST by Modernman (Providence protects idiots, drunkards, children and the United States of America- Otto von Bismarck)
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To: Modernman
If FR folds, something else will pop up.

Precisely. Which is why Jim needn't accommodate anything he doesn't choose to accommodate. If his service can be procured elsewhere, this site is free to be what HE wants it to be. And the people who attend this site can be here because they agree with that, or they can seek their services elsewhere. Again, Jim has made that perfectly clear over the years.

An idea or ideology is no different than a car or washing machine- if you can't get enough people to buy it, it's a failure.

Jim is not "selling" an ideology. It is assumed that those who visit this site already "own" that ideology. That's the point you can't seem to grasp.

If Jim Rob can't get enough people to agree with his viewpoints to such an extent that they're willing to donate to FR, his viewpoints and this site are a failure.

See above. As Jim has said many times, Free Republic is not his life. If this site can't sustain itself, it folds. That doesn't mean that conservatism or Jim's values are failures, just that there wasn't enough money to support the site. Jim's life goes on.

why does he bother with this site, then? If FR serves no purpose to JR, whether material, spiritual or intellectual, why spend so much effort on it?

I didn't say there was no purpose, just that Jim derives no benefit from the site. By "benefit," I meant profit. Surely you can appreciate the paradox implicit in sacrificing one's ideological soul to sustain a web site that advances one's ideology. If the reward to Jim lies in advancing conservatism, how can he justify maintaining a web site that defeats his purpose?

Why would anyone put so much effort into something like this if it held no benefit to them?

By benefit, I meant profit. You were the one who drew a parallel with a corporation. Absent the profit motive, your analogy falls apart.

I think you miss the symbiotic nature of FR and the Freeper community. Neither can survive as an entity without the other.

The relationship is symbiotic, but FR existed before there was a FReeper community, at least as you know it.

The ultimate test of this argument will be which of us is around in (another) five years.

169 posted on 01/06/2004 2:46:53 PM PST by IronJack
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To: visagoth
I post both on FR and DU. I post on DU to create trouble but I haven't been banned (and have hundreds of posts). But I have observed that they censor far more there than FR. In the Election forum, they lock a LOT of the threads for being "incivil". Normal posters- not even trolls- routinely get posts pulled because someone thought it was too critical. There is no such as Free Speech on DU, and while both DU and FR bar trolls, even liberal posters on DU have frustration with the incessant censorship.
170 posted on 01/09/2004 10:41:06 PM PST by jagrmeister (I'm not a conservative. I don't seek to conserve, I seek to reform.)
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To: Jim Robinson
I agree with you. However, I have been attacked more than once in this forum for questioning the policies of Bush. I don't mind being attacked, but an equally sharp tone generally draws responses, otherwise known as flame war. While my posts criticizing Bush were never removed, I couldn't reply my opponents with the same veracity as they attacked me. Should there be a level of decorum for everyone?
171 posted on 01/10/2004 10:40:50 PM PST by FirstPrinciple
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