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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000552.txt from 1998/03

From: Lee Hickling <hickling@-----.Net>
Subj: Re: Re Garrett Martin and the Ring
Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 07:41:21 -0500

Roger Shilcock wrote:

>I must say that, as a Brit, I agree in principle with Ed. L. However, I'm
>also pretty surprised that simply knocking the President is supposed to be
>"extremism". What would happen if I proposed on here that our railways
>should be renationalized, I wonder?

Mr. Shilcock, In my opinion, you too would be out of line.

My objection to Mr. Martin's original post, and the objections of several
other subscribers, was not to the political character of the post but to
its being posted on Klarinet-L.

I have nearly abandoned several Usenet newsgroups I once enjoyed, because
they have been debased by off-topic posts. Worse yet, persistent
politically motivated posts by non-journalists, one man in particular, have
nearly destroyed a mail list that was once of professional value and
interest to me, owned by the Society of Professional Journalists.

There are other arenas in which one can legitimately attack President
Clinton or advocate renationalization of British railways. The Klarinet
list is an invaluable resource and recreation for professional musicians,
teachers and students. I found and subscribed to it only about a month ago,
and I wish someone had told me about it sooner. We should defend it jealously.

Dr. Lacey, clearly with that in mind, intended to send his reply by private
e-mail, not to post it to the list. He apologized profusedly for his mistake.

I suspect his post reflected not solely his political views but also the
way many U.S. citizens have become irritated by the strident and
acrimonious political debate going on around the President -- fueled, many
of them think, by a minority who hope to bring down the administration at
any cost. Reading, say, The Times of London -- and I read the Internet
edition most mornings -- cannot convey to you the mood in this country.

As a former Washington correspondent for a large newspaper chain, my
reading of the high approval ratings Mr. Clinton has maintained during
recent weeks is that most voters, close to 70 percent, have decided that
even if Clinton is guilty of all the indiscretions he is accused of, and
worse yet, of lying about them, the attacks on him are political and not
moral, and are not relevant to his performance as President -- and they
don't like that. But this is all off-topic here.

My point is that I believe Mr. Lacey's reaction reflected primarily his
fear of allowing such irrelevancies to intrude on the mail list. Certainly
mine does.

Lee Hickling <>

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