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On 1/7/17 1:08 PM, Richard Taylor wrote:
Dear Louis Proyect,

Let me begin by writing that I am a long time subscriber to your
website.  I have considerable respect for your work, your rigor, and
your conviction.  On the matter of Syria, you have been a beacon of
light from the onset.

I do have one suggestion: tone down the personal vituperation that
creeps into your postings.  For example, in your posting below, you
conclude by writing, "I hope you are getting paid well enough by the
Kremlin to assuage your conscience.”  This is completely gratuitous.
Let your robust argument do the talking.  By adding the last
sentence, you deflect attention from your argument, and by the
inclusion of the last sentence, you needlessly insinuate an ad
hominem attack that no doubt surely inclines Mr. Hirthler to be even
less disposed to consider your case.  However tempting it is to
include ad hominem attacks, they have to be subordinated to the
higher task of persuasion.

Dick Taylor

Actually when I write a public flame like that, it is not with the purpose of changing the recipient's mind. It is only designed to keep my head from exploding.

Over the past 6 years, however, I have had *many* private exchanges with an entirely different tone and that has often changed peoples' minds. Truth be told, the main thing working against the Hirthler POV is just the sheer bestiality of the Syrian/Russian/Iranian blitzkrieg.
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