Tuesday, March 06, 2007

IOZ Is Excused

Perhaps I don’t read IOZ often or closely enough. I know he’s a good writer. I know he’s often uniquely insightful. I’ve come to regard him as an equal opportunity and erudite cynic. But today I find that his skeptic’s blade isn’t uniformly sharp. His take on this excerpt not only lacks the cynical dissection that I’ve come to expect, but somehow IOZ went from cynic to sucker. There’s reality, which is most certainly ugly, and then there’s the fantasy of a “platoon” of men willingly standing guard over rape.

IOZ should ask himself why Key doesn’t actually use the word “rape”. Cause I know IOZ is good at a lot of things, but making excuses for people? Not sure I’ve ever seen him do that before.


sydbristow said...

Guts Scrabble -- It's a Scream

I don't know, what do you think the "it" is? He didn't say it because he wants to imply it. He wants to imply it because: a) he knows he has no proof; b) he's making crap up. Like the dialogue, for instance? Or maybe that's part of the implication, they speak great English because they're in the "service" industry.

I read IOZ's post before reading yours and I didn't share your reaction at all. I think his point (here) is valid: rape ("I fuck you") and conquering/occupying army ("I fuck you") go together, they have throughout recorded history. The contrary position is/would be the exception.

topazz said...

Are you really just trying to understand why IOZ has been so wildly successful at blogging? Stop trying, it's not something anyone can "mine" not that I'm accusing you of that. I've always been curious about IOZ myself.

But IOZ is an enigma, he's always been different, starting with his very nic. He has a following who read faithfully, and he seems to attract new readers all the time, I'm not talking about current or ex-fraysters, although granted, I'm one of many who read him too.

He can say anything and he does - he is knowledgeable on any subject, he darts from religion to politics to sex to the arts. He's outrageous. He's unique, he's dazzling, he's got that cache about him. He's one of those people with a translatable charisma, I imagine it comes through pretty strong in real life too.

Clot said...

Topazz---I respectfully disagree there's anything mysterious or undefinable about the success of IOZ and his format. It's the content, number one, and then consistent, reliable content, number two. That's why, for better or worse, people flock to Olive Garden and Red Lobster---they like what they'll get well enough, and they have little fear but that they'll get what they're expecting every time they visit. And no insult to IOZ---I'm not sure what type of successful restaurant or other vendor he should properly be compared with---but those particular restaurant chains are illustrative.

WikiFray, on the other hand, is more like a communal buffet or smorgasbord at which many folks take turns suggesting a menu and cooking it up, with varying results. It's on my own "favorites" list just like IOZ's site, and that won't change. But it may be apples and oranges to compare WikiFray, largely a bulletin board, to a one-man blog.

Schadenfreude said...

Couple of possibilities:

1. Sounds less like rape than coerced intelligence (torture).

2. Agree with daveto that it rings false (but what do I know?).

3. Agree with IOZ. The American approach has been a disaster from the beginning (house to house searches and blasting the shit out of anyone who approaches a checkpoint too quickly to name a couple of obvious things). Disagree about the inevitability.

bEnder said...

syd: Many times I’ve almost written the post about why we haven’t “won” a war since WWII, the constant being we’re too civilized to wage one the good old fashioned way, i.e. rape, kill, pillage and burn. That’s not to say those things don’t still occur. They do. But they’re no longer institutionalized, and certainly not the down-low general directives that IOZ would have us believe.

topazz: Just responding to one of his posts. But since you bring it up, I would say that I’ve been giving him too much credit. Put it this way: some demographics are harder to appeal to than others. I’m beginning to see the demographic that’s drawn to IOZ isn’t at all unlike many of the more--how should I put this--less stable types we know and love from BotF.

In general, my experience in the military informs me here. It’s absolutely true that there are a lot of “kids” in uniform that would be no better than deers caught in the headlights of an event such as the one Key describes. It’s also true that there are some dirt bags in uniform that would be quick to participate in a gang rape. But it’s equally true that the majority of those kids grow into professional soldiers, and in a platoon there’s likely to be quite a few of them, making Key’s story rather hard to swallow. Plenty of other problems with Key’s story, but IOZ thought to ignore them and instead edit “rape” into it.

topazz said...

I guess what brought it to mind was that you posted your comment here, rather than over on IOZ's blog.

one-of-the-less-stable-types said...

Guys came back from Nam relating gang rapes, why dismiss Key's accounting?

btw, Topazz, Ender did a linkback to IOZ with this entry...which is pretty cool, cuz it's like getting a reponse and a half.