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[P]
The trolling will be of extraordinary magnitude

By Blond Treehorn Thug in Media
Wed Sep 26, 2007 at 03:17:47 PM EST
Tags: troll, pope, lol italian media (all tags)

I'm going to tell you about one of the biggest trolls of 2007.

Now, I'm not talking about someone schooling HuSi or Slashdot.  

I'm not talking about someone rickrocking the comment boards at Newgrounds.

I'm going to tell you about a troll of international scope.  


What do I mean by a troll?

I'd like to digress a bit on what I mean here by "troll" and how we'd know it when we see it.  There are several types of trolls which all have their strengths and weaknesses, but I'll only discuss one.  

I'm thinking here of the simple kind of troll which is semantically equivalent to climbing into the rafters during an Elks' meeting and dumping a sack of pissed-off cats right onto the dais.  You know, something along these lines.  I'd like to term this a "cat-sack troll".  Now, the crucial feature of a cat-sack troll is that in addition to generating a whole lotta sturm und drang, you have to be speaking entirely out of your ass.

Some background

Here is a link to a Time article about the original article which, for the record, is an article entitled "La dolce morte di Papa Wojtyla" ("The Sweet Death of Pope Wojtyla") by Dottoressa Lina Pavanelli, which appeared in the Italian sorta-bimonthly MicroMega.    (For the record, anyone who does not understand the need for a word like "sorta-bimonthly" when describing an Italian media outlet is not familiar with Italian media outlets.)

It's hard to know exactly what Time's motivation or intent is here.  It seems plausible to me that they're just passing on the troll (journalistic integrity ftw), but it seems much more likely to me that they know precisely what they're doing.  (I mean, hell, I'm sending all you guys over there with these links, i.e.  Time pwns.) But in any case I link to the Time article because it's the best treatment in English I've seen.

As for the original article,  it doesn't seem to be available online, but here at least is an article by Dott.ssa Pavanelli responding to a series of critiques of the original article.  She here seems to be dealing line-by-line with certain critiques, but at the very least we can trust that the gist of the Time article is correct, since she reiterates some of her argument in the response:

Il mio interesse è focalizzato sul periodo che precede il 30 marzo. L'analisi delle informazioni di cui dispongo mi ha portato a concludere che, per qualche ragione non spiegata da motivi clinici, nei due mesi antecedenti la morte, il paziente non ha ricevuto una quantità di nutrimento sufficiente e non ha usufruito in  tempo utile di quei presidi terapeutici che sono normali per molti malati con patologie simili.



My interest focuses on the period preceding March 30.  My analysis of the data to which I had access leads me to believe that the patient neither received sufficient nutriments nor the appropriate therapeutic treatment for a period of two months preceding his death; moreover this has never been explained by the presiding physicians.

[translation mine]


Long story short, this woman is claiming the Pope was euthanized.  You know, the shit Catholics are really, really not supposed to do EVAR?  Well, the claim is that a bunch of cardinals and pope-doctors got together and did exactly that.

Why is this a troll of extraordinary magnitude?

What makes a cat-sack troll effective?  As I see it, it has two key features:

  • Guaranteed to piss people off.

    As far as this criterion goes, the article is brilliant; it is guaranteed to piss off tens of millions.  You think Egil was bad?  Essentially, this article is a "HI, ROR" to about a billion people worldwide.

    In case anyone has missed the context, the reason this idea is provocative is that the Catholic Church takes a very strong philosophical and theological stand against euthanasia.  To discover that the Church leadership have chosen to euthanize the Pope would have been roughly equivalent to finding out that the Red Cross has been making and placing IEDs.

    Because of this, the fact that the euthanasia occurred is almost inconceivable.  The doctrine of the Church on this issue is crystal clear, and say what you will, but people don't dedicate their lives to a theology without believing the core tenets.

  • Lacking any evidence whatsoever.

    So after reading the Time article, and Dott.ssa Pavanelli's response to a criticism, what I glean is that although she is giving her medical opinion, she never examined the body of the Pope (before or after death) or had access to any data at all, but she is basing her accounts on what she read third-hand in some accounts (ROFL) or what she saw on TV (LOLLERSKATES).

    This reminds me of that Schiavo case, when one of the Republican guys who was also a doctor came on TV and gave his diagnosis from watching news clips.  Seriously, it's like these people are trying to insult my intelligence.  Like they're sitting in a cavern thinking "Alright, what will these clowns buy next?  For my next trick, I'm going to give an expert opinion based on tea leaves and the profile of the Sun's corona during the next solar eclipse."

What can we expect from this?

Anyway, awesome troll.  Quick summary:  this woman writes an article saying "I SAW SOME STUFF ON TV" and one-sixth of the world's population is going to shit golden brick. This will make the cable news rounds if it hasn't already.  There will be people outraged and people outraged at the outrage, etc.  I'd be dismayed, but then it occurs to me that all these cable news pundits have children too, and somebody's gotta feed the little pricks.

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Related Links
o Slashdot
o something along these lines
o Here is a link
o MicroMega
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o Also by Blond Treehorn Thug


Display: Sort:
The trolling will be of extraordinary magnitude | 45 comments (28 topical, 17 editorial, 0 hidden)
wait in line:ahmadinejad is trolling the world now (2.25 / 4) (#9)
by circletimessquare on Mon Sep 24, 2007 at 12:41:14 PM EST



The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

You have such a hard-on for Iran's prez. (3.00 / 6) (#15)
by V on Mon Sep 24, 2007 at 08:19:36 PM EST

Why don't you invite him for a few drinks and if there's chemistry maybe more?

V.
---
What my fans are saying:
"That, and the fact that V is a total, utter scumbag." VZAMaZ.
"well look up little troll" cts.
"I think you're a worthless little cuntmonkey but you made me lol, so I sigged you." re
"goodness gracious you're an idiot" mariahkillschickens
[ Parent ]

i can't (2.85 / 7) (#16)
by circletimessquare on Mon Sep 24, 2007 at 09:55:49 PM EST

there's no gays in iran ;-(

The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]
Excellent response (1.50 / 2) (#21)
by Blond Treehorn Thug on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 09:34:53 AM EST



I am amused by the simplicity of this game. Bring me your finest meats and cheeses.
[ Parent ]
Euthanasia versus starvation (2.50 / 4) (#13)
by sudogeek on Mon Sep 24, 2007 at 03:20:39 PM EST

I read as much as I could of the article, comments, and rebuttal by the author. I couldn't find any mention or evidence that the Pope was euthanized, that is administered medications or poisons to hasten death, despite the headlines in the US press.

Instead, the question is whether the Pope, unable to eat due to dementia and a Parkinson-like syndrome, was allowed to starve. Quite a diference.

As I read the back-and-forth, it seems that a permanent feeding tube was not used, perhaps according to the Pope's wishes. This is appropriate and it is also how my living will reads. If you put a PEG in me I will come back to haunt you.

There's a sucker born every minute, and you're an hour's worth.

+1 FP {[nt (none / 1) (#14)
by Stick Apart on Mon Sep 24, 2007 at 07:21:19 PM EST


-------
> "I think it could easily be around 200 million people dead because of gun control." - V

SUPPORT A TEXT-FRIENDLY INTERNET

Hi, ROR (none / 1) (#17)
by Hiphopopotamus on Mon Sep 24, 2007 at 10:49:48 PM EST


_________________

I'm In LOVE!

you're doing it wrong (none / 0) (#25)
by ray eckson on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 11:57:12 AM EST




wampsy: hey ray why don't you start up a site. you could call it ray5.
rusty: I gotta fix that stupid cancel bug.
booger: How's that for daring to get ray eckson all sniffy, you cow?
poopy: Not that I'm gay or anything, but for you I might make an exception.
[ Parent ]
HI, ror???? (1.50 / 2) (#27)
by Hiphopopotamus on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 12:49:00 PM EST


_________________

I'm In LOVE!
[ Parent ]

now with extra wrong (3.00 / 2) (#29)
by ray eckson on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 02:16:18 PM EST




wampsy: hey ray why don't you start up a site. you could call it ray5.
rusty: I gotta fix that stupid cancel bug.
booger: How's that for daring to get ray eckson all sniffy, you cow?
poopy: Not that I'm gay or anything, but for you I might make an exception.
[ Parent ]
Honestly, I don't know how to please you anymore (none / 1) (#30)
by Hiphopopotamus on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 02:29:27 PM EST

I should just go back to annoying the hell out of people....
_________________

I'm In LOVE!
[ Parent ]

USE THE MEME CORRECTLY OR STOP USING IT AT ALL (none / 0) (#31)
by ray eckson on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 02:52:50 PM EST




wampsy: hey ray why don't you start up a site. you could call it ray5.
rusty: I gotta fix that stupid cancel bug.
booger: How's that for daring to get ray eckson all sniffy, you cow?
poopy: Not that I'm gay or anything, but for you I might make an exception.
[ Parent ]
What are we talking about now? (none / 1) (#32)
by Hiphopopotamus on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 02:53:55 PM EST


_________________

I'm In LOVE!
[ Parent ]

you fail k5 history (none / 0) (#33)
by ray eckson on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 02:58:46 PM EST

now shut up


wampsy: hey ray why don't you start up a site. you could call it ray5.
rusty: I gotta fix that stupid cancel bug.
booger: How's that for daring to get ray eckson all sniffy, you cow?
poopy: Not that I'm gay or anything, but for you I might make an exception.
[ Parent ]
I don't read Mike's comments (none / 1) (#34)
by Hiphopopotamus on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 02:59:56 PM EST

They are always about being a nutjob or computers. Too boring.
_________________

I'm In LOVE!
[ Parent ]

you don't have to (none / 0) (#35)
by ray eckson on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 03:01:09 PM EST

just look at the replies


wampsy: hey ray why don't you start up a site. you could call it ray5.
rusty: I gotta fix that stupid cancel bug.
booger: How's that for daring to get ray eckson all sniffy, you cow?
poopy: Not that I'm gay or anything, but for you I might make an exception.
[ Parent ]
Actually, eckson, you're failing it here (none / 0) (#39)
by Blond Treehorn Thug on Wed Sep 26, 2007 at 07:26:29 PM EST

I think if anyone is allowed to hi, ror it is Egil, no?

I am amused by the simplicity of this game. Bring me your finest meats and cheeses.
[ Parent ]
the meme is very specific in scope and use (none / 0) (#42)
by ray eckson on Wed Sep 26, 2007 at 08:29:57 PM EST

and he's using it incorrectly


wampsy: hey ray why don't you start up a site. you could call it ray5.
rusty: I gotta fix that stupid cancel bug.
booger: How's that for daring to get ray eckson all sniffy, you cow?
poopy: Not that I'm gay or anything, but for you I might make an exception.
[ Parent ]
hi (3.00 / 2) (#43)
by ghjm on Wed Sep 26, 2007 at 11:46:45 PM EST

ror

[ Parent ]
I disagree (3.00 / 2) (#18)
by khallow on Mon Sep 24, 2007 at 11:58:29 PM EST

You are just imagining things! There's absolutely no reason to put off the Miss Asparaus beauty pagent for imaginary "trolling" danger. Besides the town needs the tourism. We're hanging on the edge here. The very edge. Talk like this will just kill out town.

Blond Treehorn Thug, I know you're just trying to do the "right thing", but we don't need to "stir things up" with scary and unfounded rumors about man-eating trolls. This time tomorrow, we'll be laughing about this over some beers, not fighting for our lives desperately against overwhelming trolling odds. You'll see!

Stating the obvious since 1969.

Hm. (none / 1) (#23)
by Blond Treehorn Thug on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 09:42:07 AM EST

Have you ever wondered why, why the crime rate at k5 is so low, yet the accident rate is so high?

I am amused by the simplicity of this game. Bring me your finest meats and cheeses.
[ Parent ]
In case the previous was ambiguous (none / 1) (#20)
by LilDebbie on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 09:17:03 AM EST

STARVATION IS NOT A GOOD DEATH.

There. Anyone still confused? Stupid Italian bitch doesn't know Latin. Time has no scruples generating controversy. End. Of. Story.

My name is LilDebbie and I have a garden.
- hugin -

Hi there. (none / 1) (#26)
by fluxrad on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 12:01:38 PM EST

God says that's how it's gotta happen if he deems it so. Who the hell are you to argue against God's will?

You're bringing human morality into it. That's sinful - especially the whole breaking of the 6th commandment thing.

--
"It is seldom liberty of any kind that is lost all at once."
-David Hume
[ Parent ]
Wish you hadn't mentioned those other sites (none / 0) (#28)
by nostalgiphile on Tue Sep 25, 2007 at 01:41:09 PM EST

but +1SP anyway--i.e., this topic concerns me--and for teh record there were good trolls b4 ca. 2005 and FNH (though that was a definite crest in K5's wave) and some of them even pre-date teh Trollocaust, which no one (conveniently?) seems to remember anymore.

"Depending on your perspective you are an optimist or a pessimist[,] and a hopeless one too." --trhurler
THIS is trolling of an extraordinary (none / 0) (#40)
by TDS on Wed Sep 26, 2007 at 07:33:14 PM EST

magnitude. This bit of Catholic insanity could take down millions.

No wonder the Catholic church is declining in numbers...

And when we die, we will die with our hands unbound. This is why we fight.

I saw this on the Beeb myself this morning (none / 0) (#41)
by Blond Treehorn Thug on Wed Sep 26, 2007 at 08:22:38 PM EST

Although this is the kind of thing that del and gndn will eat up

I am amused by the simplicity of this game. Bring me your finest meats and cheeses.
[ Parent ]
nice (none / 0) (#45)
by Delirium on Sun Oct 14, 2007 at 05:54:48 AM EST

It doesn't really seem like particularly Catholic insanity, though. Theories about how THE REAL TRUTH ABOUT AIDS is some sort of European conspiracy against Africa, or alternately is a big hoax and not related to HIV at all, are widespread there, including among secular politicians.

[ Parent ]
nice! = (none / 0) (#44)
by CodeWright on Fri Sep 28, 2007 at 02:43:23 PM EST



--
A: Because it destroys the flow of conversation.
Q: Why is top posting dumb? --clover_kicker

The trolling will be of extraordinary magnitude | 45 comments (28 topical, 17 editorial, 0 hidden)
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