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re My comments posted to “The decline of the US”

Forums Forums Issues & Complaints re My comments posted to “The decline of the US”

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    This is not a complaint. I assumed that the rules of these forums were similar to the rules of other serious open forums and therefor did not read them before I began posting here recently. I began a reply (below) to your warning before deciding to in fact read those rules and, glad that I did, because I would have violated those rules by posting a reply to you there, the moderator, in that space.

    I didn’t come here with a political agenda or any other agenda. As I’ve stated numerous times I’ve been a reader/subscriber to Skeptical Inquirer for decades and was curious as to the nature of discussions on forums supported by CFI/SI. In fact it was because of the influence of the rational skepticism I mainly learned from SI that led me to recognize the disastrous mistake the US was about to make by invading Iraq, and that it was all based on propaganda that could be easily un-masked by applying skeptical analysis of our government’s claims. Through those decades of association with SI I have seen the various editors and directors struggle with the question of the extent of political analysis that they might wade into. Though I might have wished they had allowed such skeptical analysis of those issues within their pages, I fully understood their continuing decisions not to do so.

    SI serves several important functions that no other publication that I know of even attempts. If staying away from these tinderbox political issues is what is necessary to perform their primary mission, so be it. I don’t know what I expected I’d find here. Perhaps something other than what I’ve discovered so far, but that would be the result of my own unfounded expectations. I’m not going to start throwing aspersions randomly all around after only my brief participation here, but I am somewhat disappointed. Perhaps all these years I should have been subscribing to Free Inquiry as well as SI, as I am aware that they discuss issues within my interests that SI will not address. It wasn’t because of lack of curiosity, but merely of allocating limited time between a professional life, being a husband and father, and involved in several other ongoing interests.

    I am distressed that after only several days participation here that I have been cautioned, and that I may have given myself a self-inflicted black eye before the other participants here. I am sorry for my part in this situation, and I am uncertain of how to proceed. My first instinct is to say the hell with it and move on, but because of my long association with SI that just doesn’t seem right. I will always defend my political beliefs with reason and respect, and I have no desire to escalate what happened in the least. But I fear that I’ve made an enemy who will try to denigrate anything I might post. Maybe he won’t, I don’t know.

    After carefully reading the forum rules I’m not exactly sure which clause I might have violated . I’ll assume it was my comment that timb was deluded about voting our way out of our national nightmare.

    I apologize for the length of this message, and I would appreciate any comment or advice you might offer.


    Vince Lawrence


    I hope I made it clear which rules I see were validated. You also might notice that those rules give the moderators a lot of leeway. I hope you find that we are fair. You’ve no doubt seen the lively conversations that do not illicit comment from us. We have banned people, but they have been very persistent, repetitive and rude. You are none of those. I hope you stick around. I had a feeling you had not read the rules, and even if you had, I understand there are some gray areas.

    BTW, I don’t speak for CFI or hold any type of position with them other than a volunteer. There is a higher level that could ban me without warning, but they don’t seem to prioritize this forum very high.

    And to repeat, I did single anyone out. I merely wanted to make my presence known. The tone on that whole page was headed in a direction that I did not believe would be productive. 


    Thank you sir, and I did not take the message you sent as singling me out. I will try to be more circumspect, or to choose my words more… diplomatically, in the future when it comes to politics. Like I said, this space is not quite what I expected from the organization that is responsible for Skeptical Inquirer, the source of my interest. Yes, some gray areas, but they allow, and trust in, the sense and sensibilities of their choice of moderators. As a surveyor, when I worked in heavy construction I was management and classified as a “Field Engineer.” The company I worked for was employee owned, and one of the 50 largest general construction companies in the US at the time. (construction managers on the Detroit Fee Press construction, Auto World in Detroit, and on Epcot Center.) The Cleveland experience was our involvement as first major sub-contractor on a major addition to the Cleveland Clinic (we built the concrete infrastructure high-rise). The company was entirely and exclusively Union. They were one of the major signatories to the national and international  union labor agreements. I’m guessing, from that experience, that you were – and damned if I can remember the term – that journeyman that was the liaison between the rank and file on the job and union management to handle grievances, and violations of safety protocols on the job site. No matter; I talk too much.


    He is asking for the rule that was violated and example. It would help all if you were clear on this.


    I quoted the rules back in the thread. Do you still have questions Green?

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