Peaceful Devolution

Ian Freeman is embarrassing.

It’s a view you rarely never see on this blog, but it’s a view held by myself and a serious portion of liberty activists in the Keene area. (Not to mention the overwhelming majority of Keene residents.) Lately it’s been the senseless pestering of city bureaucrats, the quixotic school outreach, and his involvement in the war on grandmas. Yes, he does other things which are more legitimate and professional, but, for as long as I’ve been in New Hampshire, it seems that Ian has always been vocally supporting activism that’s jarringly wrong-headed.

I joined this blog in 2010 in order to openly criticize certain activist tactics that struck me as counterproductive. At the time, I was worried that the suppression of criticism was creating an atmosphere of groupthink— a situation where the systematic lack of criticism leads groups to make wildly irrational decisions. Since then, I’ve changed some hearts and minds with regards to criticism, and caused people to look twice at things they’ve taken for granted. This has been very satisfying.

But, where it really matters, I have failed. I had assumed the groupthink emerged spontaneously from the interactions of many people. In reality, groupthink occurs because Ian Freeman consistently and deliberately marginalizes criticism and critics, and derails open discussions of the flaws of activist strategies.

It took this thread on the Shire Society forum to make me understand this. (I get a bit carried away in my first posts because I’m blinded by rage, but take a few days to calm down, and post more reasonably later.)

Since I’m not as irrational as Ian, I’m acknowledging this new information, and changing my own tactics accordingly. It’s pointless to try to debate with someone who doesn’t believe there should be debate or open discussion.

Short of coercion, the only realistic option available to those of us who would like to see activist tactics improve, rather than stagnate or regress, is to apply social pressure to make Ian stop. I am convinced that this is the only way things will change. It’s frustrating and absurd that it has come down to this, but Ian has blocked every other alternative.

As part of this effort, I will no longer be posting on Free Keene. More than anything else at this point, I suspect that my blogging only feeds Ian’s egomania. Like a Democrat on Fox news, I’m just here to support the pretense that Free Keene is fair and balanced.

I know some of my fellow bloggers agree with these concerns, and I encourage them to join me. Perhaps it’s time for a new group blog, one not stifled by Free Keene’s cult of personality. Alternately, I’m sure Free Manch would welcome new bloggers.

Adiós Free Keene, and good riddance.

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