Open Thread: Comment policy

I have started getting some abusive comments. I think it is mainly from Islamists and Congress camp followers. I understand where they are coming from.

They don’t like their lies exposed. Unable to respond with arguments, some Islamists go batshit crazy and kill; the more sophisticated and spineless ones leave anonymous abusive comments on blogs. Congress camp followers generally don’t kill like the Islamists — they leave the Congress party to organize the mass killings, such as the killing of thousands of Sikhs following the murder of Indira Gandhi. The Congress camp followers go apeshit crazy (as opposed to batshit crazy) and rapidly descend into pseudo-secular illogic.

Since I have made the change that comments can be posted without registering, the discussions have become more lively. Thanks to a reader who suggested the change — you know who you are. But the downside is that the Islamists and Congress camp followers post stupid comments. One has to live with that. I have decided to disemvowel some of their comments and delete the totally insane ones.

Here’s what the last paragraph looks like disemvoweled:

Snc hv md th chng tht cmmnts cn b pstd wtht rgstrng, th dscssns hv bcm mr lvly. Thnks t rdr wh sggstd th chng — y knw wh y r. Bt th dwnsd s tht th slmsts nd Cngrss cmp fllwrs pst stpd cmmnts. n hs t lv wth tht. hv dcdd t dsmvwl sm f thr cmmnts nd dlt th ttlly nsn ns.

Can be read but easily avoided as well.

Author: Atanu Dey


33 thoughts on “Open Thread: Comment policy”

  1. Sounds like a good idea. Also, you could send first time commenters to the moderation queue. WordPress has that option in Settings > Discussion. That should weed out the one-time casual crazies


  2. congress wallas are personality cultwallas. we should have voted for the legendary “nidar neta” advaniji; now who knows when the ram temple will be built. hinduism is a grate religion. we realised economics and division of labor thousands of years ago before d west guyz. nasa and microsoft will go bankrupt without india. narendra modiji shud be our pm. he will snuff out terror and those congress wallas also and fast track our great hindustan to progress. we need to vote for educated iit guys. ideal leadership shoukd come if lok paritran guys take over defunct bjp. they should join forces with modiji and form think tank


    1. Amit writes above, “. . . we realised economics and division of labor thousands of years ago before d west guyz. nasa and microsoft will go bankrupt without india. ” If we did (and I am not sure that anyone living today can claim to be the “we”), it has not done a whole lot of good for us, did it? What makes you think that NASA and Microsoft are dependent on India for their solvency? Is this just jingoistic chest thumping or is there any evidence for all this that somehow we are not privy to?

      I think it is a good thing to look at things dispassionately — without deluding ourselves about how great we are.


  3. Hi Atanu,

    I have been following your blog since last few months. I came across this blog when I was googling for Sri Sri. That blog is one of my favourite one.
    What you are saying through this blog is not only truth but is something of a taboo in our society. The unspeakable. I do admire your guts to openely express and defend your views. Islam, Socialism, Gandhi are very seldom critisized in a public media. This critisim is important for a better and cooler society. Please continue the challenging work.

    with support,
    Omkar Darvekar.


  4. pakistan make 1 noble laureate in science. india make 4 after independence if u include economics. population ratio is about 6. so india and pakistan are about the same. pak has its mullahs and generals while india has sri sri, sai baba and advani. they have taliban and its clones clones and we have naxals,bajrang dal and simi. are we any different? is religious orientation playing a role or is it just the tendency of people from the subcontinent to underperform and cause anarchy???


    1. Rajkamal:

      Welcome! At last a reader from JNU.

      That’s a pukka jholawala’s argument. Since you are at JNU, it would have been surprising if you had not equated Pakistan and India. Pity though you don’t mention what the equivalent of JNU jholawalas are in Pakistan. Do tell.


  5. Atanu,

    Wow! It took sometime for me to read the first SMS comment. It takes some screwed-up intelligence (!!) to write it. The writer is truly uneducated.

    To be honest, these comments are perfect for a series “Humor and Silliness on my blog”, though I am not counting that such comments may take away lot of your time.


  6. hmm. that was a test of your biases. i am not from jnu. nice to know that your previous post on ali sina was not satirical as i had initially thought. anyway, read this:

    here is an interesting part
    “Dr. Hassab-Elnany cannot respond to my refutation. Instead he attacks my person saying I am not a physicist and that I am an ex-Shiite and the Shiites are not Muslims because they interpret the Quran in a wrong way and they do not accept the hadith of the Sunnis, etc, etc. These are adhominem – attack at the person. They are logical fallacies. Instead of undermining my credentials Dr. Elnaby should refute my arguments.”

    do you know what an ad hominem argument is?

    anyway, responding to your question: there are no jholawalla equivalents in pakistan, or they have been butchered by those very islamic bigots that you hate. thats why they are thousands of times more fucked up than we in india are (given that our mentalities are essentially the same, the presence of jholawallahs has probably moderated the effect of that mentality)

    you aren’t really a rationalist, but just choose to clothe your inherent biases in the garb of rationality, with a bit of half-baked economic jargon thrown in to impress. while i agree with you that islam is fucked up, i also believe that hinduism or whatever the vedas preached is also fucked up, just like any other religion is. it taught our ancestors to maintain caste rigidity and respect white skins, causing us to be colonised by anyone whose skin was whiter. for indian converts, islam was just the choice of a lesser evil.

    i like reading your blog though. it has pointed me to some great columns, videos and resources, which, in isolation are good mental stimulants. your analyses is of many issues are also smart, and thats why i will keep visiting your blog, despite being certain that you are a dangerous bigot, and hoping that people like you are not formulating our public policies, and sadly, thats why i will keep voting for the congress, till i see a less-worse alternative. after all, would you in your right mind vote for the man who captured the people’s imagination by riding a chariot vowing to build a shrine for an ancient tribal warlord, and promising to take us back to a time monkeys formed armies and black people were demons.

    by the way, nice to know you have opened up your blog to non-members, to allow non-sycophants to comment, even though they will probably be disemvowelled.


  7. Hello Rajkamal,

    >> are we any different?

    We have clownish christian-commie flame-baiters making asses of themselves most every day on the internet but Paksitanis don’t have such people. How about that? No I’m not saying it puts them at an advantage, quite the opposite. We encourage such specimens because our impulse basically is to have fun, while theirs is basically to ride camels. Look at the number of Pakistanis who claim Arab ancestry, not to mention the ones who want to strap bombs to their boobs or balls and detonate. Fun-loving? Or Death-loving? It is only the quasi-jihadis on India side who peddle the garbage that the Pakis want to claim anything common with us.

    Another major difference between us and Pakistanis: we have candle processions. I don’t know where that old geezer Nayyar is — too old to hold a candle to Jyoti Basu maybe? ha ha ha just kidding — but let’s say you give candles to Indo-Pak Friendship Forum buffoons, what do you think they’ll do? Head straight to Pakistan border. Arundhati Roy joins in too, because what with the Pachmarhi land-grab scam having backfire, candle-lit dinners in the said villa are a non-event. But out there in Pakistan they don’t kiss candles that much, maybe because they are too busy kissing Arab ass.

    Third major difference: We have the Naramda Bachao Andolan, the activists of which meet on the banks of the river and stage protest by having some hot sex while reading aloud from the Morse Report. Trust me, newspapers said that the riverbank was littered with used condoms after the activists spent an evening there. Can you imagine Pakistanis making good use of a river like that? Like I said, they prefer camels.

    What makes your hyperbole enjoyable is the fact you did not intend it to be funny. Mind you though that sort of humor is humored only in India, not in Pakistan. Fourth major difference.


  8. you didnt get my point did you? i offered you a specious argument that you could have easily refuted with logic. instead you chose to ridicule my supposed affiliation, which you know will get you a few backslaps from the sycophants who have registered on your site. thats the problem. you have a list of grouses, which you somehow tailor to force-fit every situation.

    and yeah, i am not a commie, but the word doesnt insult me either. khaki chaddi would be a far more potent insult. and my kind of hyperbole, as well as your kind is tolerated only in india among almost all asian countries.

    on an unrelated note, heres a nice brain teaser to ponder upon, and start developing some real logic, somewhat like ali sina. given that a person has registered on your site, whats the probability he has also registered on'_theorem


  9. >>i offered you a specious argument

    When you pass wind, you don’t need to announce the accomplishment.

    >>that you could have easily refuted with logic

    It would scorch your bottom to admit seeing the refutation.

    A fruitcake who believes that India and Pakistan are equal-equal doesn’t need to be insulted at all, my friend. He basically insults himself.

    You feel this urge to conjure up what on your own admission is specious logic because you are an anti-Hindu bigot. Pasting random URLs from the wikipedia doesn’t obscure your prejudice, any more than tying a dhoti to a mad mullah makes him a pujari. The technique of the “sophisticated” bigot is not to dispute the fact that Islam is “fucked up”, but to claim that Hinduism is also “fucked up”. I bet you did not invent this trick. Your only novel contribution to this moral-equivalence circus is the Wikipedia URL.

    This blog and its author are the unceasing targets of your venom because they assert a viewpoint that people like you have been moving heaven and earth to prevent from surfacing. Couple it with the fact that here is one man who puts his real identity to his opinions. You cannot stomach it. Your obsession is consuming you and your frustration is showing. I thought you are smarter than that.

    Insult is not as powerful as damning truth. For instance, I said you are a bigot. That judgement came from the bottom of my heart, comrade; never dilute the power of words with rhetorical use.


  10. Atanu: I agree with you that monotheisms stifle — especially Islam the way it is now in many parts of the world. But I am curious about your thoughts on the so called efflorescence of Islam in the centuries after its brutal expansion. As you doubtless know, this period produced some advances in mathematics — algebra for example. Al Khwarizmi, the Persian scholar, was also all for adopting ideas from India, and the wrote the treatise on Hindu numerals (in fact you’ve linked a video on this).

    Would you consider this phase of scientific achievement under the Islamic caliphate just an aberration? It’s true that Islamic conquests at the time were no less brutal (the Arab conquest of Sind, for example, which first brought Islam to India’s doorstep) but the same can be argued of how the Spanish went about destroying Latin America (and other Europeans North America) even as some terrific ideas that remain influential to this day were fermenting. Could you address this?

    Some other scattered thoughts: the Spanish and European conquest of North America was in essence similar to the Islamic conquest of the Indian subcontinent. The difference is that India’s traditions have survived to present day: it enjoys an astonishing millennia old continuity. More importantly, its people have survived. I live in Massachusetts; the Connecticut river passes through the state and I can tell how strange it feels to live in a land that has has been emptied so comprehensively of the people who gave this state and the river their names. This, as you will know, is true of every state, every city, every river in the United States. Few people think of this when they think of the glory of the United States.

    The US owes its present success (and it is a well deserved success) to the fact that the people who would have rebelled had they been alive did not live to fight for their independence — they died of European diseases in tragically large numbers, and they were killed and driven off their lands. Had the Iroquois and Dakotas (just two examples) survived to muster rebellions, the United States would be too torn internally to be the country it is today. It’s fortune (and its crime) is that it began with a blank slate, by erasing everything.

    India, because it was well connected to other parts of Asia and Europe, well before the Islamic invasions, had a different trajectory and ended up with a different demographic reality. It did not face the scourge of disease that the Native Americans did, even though it did face the same kind of brutality. And today, even though everything seems bleak, it still has a chance to define its own destiny.


  11. Ramayana is a relevant example, as always:

    Ravana was
    –a great brahmana (he was the great-grandson of Lord Brahma himself),
    –a great devotee of shiva,
    –a great scholar of Vedas, and
    –a great vainika: he could recite sama veda on veena.

    so what?

    He was still an adharmic person who terrorised the whole of the emerald isle of Lanka and peninsular India for decades together.

    Just because Al-Khwarizmi, Avicenna, etc indulged in some math and science, the entire bloodridden and oppressive history of islam spanning over 1500 years cannot be erased.


  12. Kedar — You are quite right. Nothing can change Islam’s bloodridden history. Any effort to push this under the carpet, as is so often done in India, only aggravates the problem. My question about Islam’s scientific achievements rose out of curiosity, not in an attempt to erase its 1500 year history of oppression. While its core ideology (conquest based on the one and only god idea) has remained the same, I wonder if in its initial years, it was more open to outside influences (curiosity about Greek texts for example) and creating something new. Atanu often points out that you don’t see Islamic countries today contributing much to science. While that may be true today, has it always been true? And if not, what is it that early Islam (in the first four centuries) was doing differently?


  13. There’s an interesting story about the destruction of the Buddhist university of Nalanda. After Khilji’s marauders laid the campus to waste, and decapitated every resident, they looked for hidden wealth and found instead a lot of books. They made a huge pile. Khilji got curious and wanted to know what was in those tomes. His men scouted for someone to explain the stuff to them, but couldn’t find anyone because they killed them all.

    The point of the story is that even a barbarian is not free of the human impulse of curiosity. To paraphrase this blog’s author: a good intellectual climate encourages and fosters the human quest for answers, but a bad one cannot suppress it altogether.

    Furthermore, I don’t think any creed, Islam included, opposes the advancement of science as long as science is subordinated to belief. As a matter of fact, Islam is less rigid in this aspect than (medieval) Christianity, for its scriptures are full of examples of superseding old rules with new ones when the latter offered tactical/strategic advantages. Under normal circumstances, breast implants would be prohibited, but recent news suggests that jihadis have invented a way to surgically insert bombs into breasts (gives a whole new meaning to “plastic surgery” eh). That’s innovation too, though dark and deadly.


  14. Congress and Islamists go hand in hand for one reason and only one reason – Economy.

    The way I look at it is, Congress is a family run business. It’s business interest lies in keeping India poor and weak. That’s really the core to their success. It does not give a shit about India or anything. Like any big Corporate house it looks for it’s financial interests only.

    To keep the family business running and not have Rahul Baba and his offsprings unemployed, they need to be in power. Obviously Muslims are their favorite votebank. They are large in numbers (if I am not wrong India has 2nd highest Muslim population in the world), they have a strategic vote share in large number of constituencies across the nation, virtually in every state of any signifance, and it’s easy to get Muslim votes; because all they need to do is ban a Satanic Verses here or a Taslima Nasreen there or overturn a Shah Bano verdict and you got the flock behind you. You got a winner really.

    Basically it’s a great return on investment. Without really investing in say convetional areas which get you vote in a ‘real’ democracy, like Education, Health Care, Roads, Water etc, you can win over Muslim votes by such stunts and befriending a local Mullah. That’s a low investment and high return.

    Also, you get a free security blanket. Meaning, a Jihadist will never bomb or attack Congress politician; an MP, MLA etc coz, Congress has pretty much bought that Insurance. So basically security which is important for Family Business basically comes free. So again zero investment and that’s great for bottomline.

    So lets regroup. 1] High return on low investment; in other words mammoth vote bank during Elections without really changing quality of life and 2] A free security blanket again without having to invest.

    What business house can afford to loose this winning combination? It would really be foolish for CEO of Congress to woe Hindus when they have such an awesome demography behind them. That’s a sure shot way to failure. Ask BJP!

    IMO, there are 3 power centers in India. The Gandhis, The Media and The new emerging Dalit/OBC power. Currently each of these power centers share a healthy symbiosis. The Media needs Congress and vise-versa. Media is extremely rich and powerful now and it does not want to ruin this balance. They see no reason to dislodge Congress. It’s working out well.

    On the other hand the Mayawati/Mulayam/Lalu power center is happy to be powerful at State level. They don’t need New Delhi’s power in immediate future. Their coffers are full. They take turns raping UP and Bihar without having to worry about CBI. It’s again a perfect balance.

    So if you look at all of this through the Economic prism, it’s easy to connect the dots. Islamic terrorism is a symptom. Not the cause of India’s current problem. And I don’t think Muslims are the cause either. In fact, the real “Islamists” are Hindus. The one’s who are ruling the nation right now.

    If you wana look at root of all this, you have to look back 63 years. That’s where you’ll find the answer (although not the solution).

    All this debate about Islam vs Hindu, and BJP vs Congress is meaningless.


  15. Rajkamal,

    oldtimer=bad cop
    atanu=good cop
    same person

    This is a cheap trick charge. It is simply that.

    Once you try to question the motives or the identities of the individuals, rather than the ideas expressed, then the very idea of a dialogue loses its value.


  16. Rajkamal

    har ek baat pe kehte ho, ki tu kya hai

    tum hi batao ye, andaz e guftagoo kya hai?

    na khud kuch kehte ho, na kisi ko kehne dete ho

    tumhare lafzon se, jo aati hai ye badboo kya hai?

    (with due apologies to Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib Sahab)



  17. @amar
    totally agree with you. this apology for a discussion lost its value after the first response to my first comment anyway, and degenerated into a mudslinging war 🙂

    here is that response. incidentally i am not for or from jnu, but had a suspicion that an alleged jnu affiliation would elicit such a response 🙂

    “Atanu Dey (author) said:


    Welcome! At last a reader from JNU.

    That’s a pukka jholawala’s argument. Since you are at JNU, it would have been surprising if you had not equated Pakistan and India. Pity though you don’t mention what the equivalent of JNU jholawalas are in Pakistan. Do tell.”


  18. Rajkamal

    An asinine comment equating India to Pakistan on the basis of per capita production of Nobel laureates(a logic straight out of a Pakistani Defence Forum) would elicit such a response (and rightfully so) from any sane person irrespective of your affiliations.

    If Atanu looks at your idiotic comment and sees that you are from JNU and then decides (on the basis of his previous interactions and knowledge of JNU affiliated individuals) to attack JNU Jhollawallahs, how does it reflect a bias?

    Its a bit like affiliating yourself to the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, drawing equivalence between Biharis and Cancer cells and then accusing the people who criticise you of bias. Sounds Familiar eh.


    P.S – By the way, how do we know you are not from JNU.


  19. @sunil
    first of all, jnu is not a bunch of thugs like rss, simi, mns, bajrang dal or even cpm or the bjp. its a university, like most universities, where neither gay profs are fired nor dalit students segregated.its denizens do not vow to build temples or mosques for some tribal warlord. nor do they beat up random groups of people.

    as for you p.s. your must know i am not from jnu just like you will know oldtimer is “real” when (s)he strategically comments here in response to this post 😉

    of course, what is a “correct” delay must be determined by complex game-theoretic calculations.

    just joking, maybe i am from jnu and you brutally exposed me. now time for me to wallow in self pity 😦


  20. =>
    first of all, jnu is not a bunch of thugs like rss, simi, mns, bajrang dal or even cpm or the bjp. its a university, like most universities, where neither gay profs are fired nor dalit students segregated.its denizens do not vow to build temples or mosques for some tribal warlord. nor do they beat up random groups of people.


    Since you’ve lowered your standards, in the same language, here goes:

    At least the thugs you mention are easy to recognize and wear their thuggery on their sleeves. With the JNU types, their thuggery, intellectual terrorism and misdeeds are hidden behind a string of alphabets and veneer of respectability, thus it takes more time and effort to denude, and their insidious statements are much more pernicious to the society. Ever read “Eminent Historians” by Arun Shourie?


  21. Hello Amar,

    >>the identities of the individuals, rather than the ideas expressed, then the very idea of a dialogue loses its value.

    Why of course, obliged. The world needs more open-minded people like you. Bloody commies are always on a motive-hunting trip, aren’t they?

    But you see, I am not here to do a dialogue in the first place, and not with ventriloquists at any rate. I like Ajeet-Mona-Robert dialogues though, and the Sholay Gabbar Singh lines are my all-time fav.

    Gabbar: Kitne aadmi the?

    Samba: Sardar, ek aadmi tha

    Gabbar: Ek! Aur tum teen! Suvvar ke bachcha! Phir bhi vaapas aa gayi!!

    Samba: Lekin woh mimicry artist hain sardar. Dus ke tarah dikh rahaa tha. Dus bandook ki aawaaz bhi sun rahaa thaaa. Tushshoon .. Tushshoon.. Tushshoon..

    You get the point.

    Comrade Rajkamal’s good-cop/bad-cop idea is not all that far-fetched. On the internet nobody knows you’re a dog (the figurative ‘you’). So it’s possible that the same poodle is pretending to be a Pomeranian and a Dalmatian at the same time. The good pup and the bad pup. They are even dialoguing with each other, because they are different pups you see. Soon enough they are joined by an Alsatian and a Doberman. Confusing, right? Point is, the script is rich enough to accommodate the whole damn kennel club. There’s also a neutral pupcop. The neutral cop is a cleverer breed than both the good cop and the bad cop. By feigning “neutrality” between a reasonable viewpoint and an extremist/nutty viewpoint, he lends legitimacy to the latter. Equal-equal, see what I mean? Sneak the nutty idea somehow in, so you can dialogue it all you want, is the gameplan. I don’t dialog with this dog-house, though occasionally I throw a bone or two its way so that the noisy pups have something to chew on.

    I got introduced to this canine constabulary when I met Comrade Sibyl. Don’t be distracted by Comrade Nair below; Sibyl is the one you need to focus on. He almost succeeded in playing spoilsport.


  22. Rajkamal

    yindus have exploited billions of people over millions of years, the brahmins have been behind every atrocity and have appropriated 99.5464327% of all the land in India and in Switzerland, India is a brahmin conspiracy to perpetuate their rule, I see brahmins everywhere, RSS is a brahmin puppet, Bajrang dal is the sword arm of the brahmins, all they want to do is kill minorities and oppress dalits, But wait there is Hope – not obama – Its the JNU – A university with impeccable standards of unbiased “research”, long dominated by the students wing of the Communist party, run by the diktats of commisars of the peepul’s party (as mamata didi would say), intellectually validated by the Great Chomsky (or as we say in Bengal “Chomu da”) -JNU is bravely fighting the hordes of Internet Hindus who multiply their net identities like Agent Smith in the matrix, Atanu is oldtimer, oldtimer is Sunil, Sunil is Amar, Amar is rajkamal, rajkamal is Oldtimer – I see internet Hindus everywhere but why fear when JNU is here, by the grace of Allah JNU will wipe these yindus from cyber space through a great revolution – AoA


  23. Hello OldTimer,

    I read with a little more attention the previous comments of the (troll) rajkumar, as well as the link you forwarded. I understand what you are saying when you wrote … “neutrality” between a reasonable viewpoint and an extremist/nutty viewpoint, he lends legitimacy to the latter… and realize my mistake.



  24. Goodness! India seems to be overpopulated with people who call themselves Amit. I think I should choose a different name in order to avoid confusion in the future.

    By the way Atanu, not being mean of cheap here, name calling and trying to show someone down is not really a sign of intellect. Calling someone a Jhollawala and from JNU does not really help you promote your cause. I say again, I believe in what you believe and I stand for many things that you stand for, however calling someone names is definitely not something that is done.
    If someone is indulging in absurdities then all you need to do is to expose them if you wish to. Why bring down the level of the debate or your own level by indulging in such frivolous pastimes such as name calling.

    That said, there is no moral equivalence between Islamists and Hindu Fundamentalists. I have yet to see the involvement of Hindu fundamentalists in overseas bombings and murders, in tortures and rapine. While I still hold the belief that mainstream Hinduism is absurd and wholly illogical, it is not a threat to the existence of humanity or to global peace.

    Hindu fundamentalism does not stem out of the religious practices of Hinduism but is a local phenomenon which is the result of centuries of oppression by Islamists and Christians. However with Islamists and Christians, it is a different matter altogether. Criticising and claiming that every other philosophy other than their own is false and evil is a given in these two cults and for all other Abhrahmic cults for that matter.

    The vast majority of so called Hindu gurus are nothing but scamsters, fraudsters and glorified pimps who are out there facilitating business and political deals in the guise of offering hope and redemption to people. Anyone who thinks critically knows that the evidence of an afterlife is negligible and hence these preachments of the gurus are nothing but hogwash and lies. The only school of thought with which I find agreement is the Advaita school of thought to a certain extent.


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