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October 8, 2018 | The rules

A best-selling Canadian author of 14 books on economic trends, real estate, the financial crisis, personal finance strategies, taxation and politics. Nationally-known speaker and lecturer on macroeconomics, the housing market and investment techniques. He is a licensed Investment Advisor with a fee-based, no-commission Toronto-based practice serving clients across Canada.

 

There are many things to be thankful for. Missing yesterday’s comment section on this pathetic blog, if you were so lucky, is one of them. Unlike the thousands of other people who read those words, I had to wade through all the trash that didn’t make it public. It’s amazing the vitriol that humans can spew when confronted with opinions they wish not to hear.

The issue du jour was the BC government’s ridiculous plan to make housing cheaper by taxing it more. Designing laws to trash a market that 70% of people are invested in shows where the NDP believes its support lies. The other 30% came here to rip me a new one for pointing this out.

But we’re not going back to that topic. Not yet.

Instead today’s post is just a reminder that this space has my name on it and because I’m a minor public figure (not as important as, say, the Trivago guy) what’s written here – by me and you – is reputational. The name of my financial business is here, too. And my corporate partner. I am not anonymous like the Zero dude. It’s not an unfiltered Twitter feed. Content is original and researched (except when I make it up to test you). In short, there are standards. Whether you like them or not.

Blog comments that are profane, hurtfully sexist, racist or ageist, are trashed. Posters who need to be spanked are DELETED. Occasionally (it’s rare – only three in 2018), someone is BANNED. The decision to discipline or erase people is mine alone. Because, as stated above, my name is on the top of this page. Because I have colleagues and others who expect me to create a corner on this madcap Internet thing where their spouses, kids and friends can come and not be grossed out by a bunch of antisocial haters.

Most of the time I kinda enjoy this place. Sometimes not. Last month when I referenced Nine Eleven, for example – a day which made me profoundly sad – the comment section lit up with the juvenile drivel of tinfoilers claiming it was a false flag event. All part of the giant conspiracy that faked a moon landing or the Holocaust. That such inanity is amplified and mainstreamed online is the cancerous underbelly of social media which otherwise empowers mankind. While nobody can shut the spigots of racial hatred, prejudice or ignorance, I can choke them off here. And I will.

One guy was banned that day last month, after being publicly warned not to denigrate the memory of victims. So he took to my email. “If you’re going to ban me from your blog, at least I should know the reason,” he demanded. “I mean, you say you support ‘free-speech’ and all that – but is this only with things YOU agree with?  That’s not what ‘free-speech’ is about (and I’m sure you know that)!  I don’t think I need to remind you (as Dr. Jordan Pederson so eloquently puts it), it’s the unpopular and opposing views that need to have a voice – even when ‘hurtful’ to some (I paraphrase here).

“So, tell me why you banned me.  I’ve made numerous contributions that some have commented positively on, and I may be ‘missed’!  I offer a contrarian point of view, which even you may find useful, from time to time.”

Contrarians are welcome here. So are dissenting voices. Read the comments yesterday for evidence of exactly that. My skin is thick and I have my Big Boy pants on whenever I sit before this blog. But I am also going to demand respectful dialogue. This blog will shutter instead of turning into the bilious populist swill that has destroyed the creds of most public sites. The lunatic conspiratorial fringe, so empowered by social media, is unwelcome here. Being a dickhead is not being contrarian. It’s just, well, being a dickhead.

About six million times a year this site is opened. Almost everyone who has something to say gets to say it. But, my blog, my rules. Deal with it.

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October 8th, 2018

Posted In: The Greater Fool

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