Free Capitalist

Stephen Month

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With Betsy's permission (a paramount 'if' in this case), I would like to make a note. As a lot of people have read, it's been proposed to make April into a month of especial cordiality and civility, in Stephen's honor. I've been taking this very seriously, and already restrained myself a few times, when realizing that my words weren't going to be utter cordiality.

I've given the idea a lot of thought, and it occurs to me that I would prefer to use December, Stephen's birthday month, instead. Have others given this whole idea thought?

Whatever we decide, I hope many members will support me in honoring the month we settle on, as long as Betsy has no objections to it.

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Whatever we decide, I hope many members will support me in honoring the month we settle on, as long as Betsy has no objections to it.

My first thought, though I've certainly made a few posts that in retrospect I should have rewritten, is that civilized posts should simply be a matter of general policy and principle at all times, not arbitrarily compartmentalized into a given month. I think that reflects what Stephen always wanted to accomplish on this board.

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My first thought, though I've certainly made a few posts that in retrospect I should have rewritten, is that civilized posts should simply be a matter of general policy and principle at all times, not arbitrarily compartmentalized into a given month. I think that reflects what Stephen always wanted to accomplish on this board.

And he did, making it unique among forums. It was more than "civility". He expected people to know what they were talking about. Questions and discussion were encouraged along with knowledgeabe statements based on expertise and competence, but not pronouncements "shooting from the hip", careless out of context quotes and misquotes, etc. -- and the inevitable wars that break out (usually in the name of "facts" and "logic") when they are rejected. Stephen had the knowledge and intelligence to contribute directly to the Forum himself on a wide variety of topics as well as moderate in a professional manner to successfully achieve his standards in both realms. All of this was part of his concept of civility and is what made the Forum unique as the "virtual valley". There is nothing wrong with a memorial of April as "Stephen month", but not as a limitation of the standards. "Stephen forever", if people can live up to it.

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There is nothing wrong with a memorial of April as "Stephen month", but not as a limitation of the standards. "Stephen forever", if people can live up to it.

I agree completely and that is how it will be -- or else.

I am not as knowledgeable as Stephen in many areas, but if things don't make sense, I will call you on it as will other FORUM members. Above all, I will insist that everyone here focuses on what counts -- on facts and values -- and leaves the personal denunciations, critiques, and flames for other, less enlightened, venues.

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There is nothing wrong with a memorial of April as "Stephen month", but not as a limitation of the standards. "Stephen forever", if people can live up to it.

I wouldn't even think of a limitation of the standards, and never implied anything of the kind. So that wasn't at all what I was talking about.

But you make a challenge to people at large, "if people can live up to it". What if people can't live up to it all the time? In the past, certainly people have gotten heated a little bit, and thus some moderation was required. And that's fine, that's how forums are supposed to operate. What I was talking about was a special time when people applied even more patience, took extremely special care of everything they said, so that this certain time was almost the highlight of the entire year.

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