The Ancient Trolls

Never believe that [they] are completely unaware of the absurdity of their replies. They know that their remarks are frivolous, open to challenge. But they are amusing themselves, for it is their adversary who is obliged to use words responsibly, since he believes in words. [They] have the right to play. They even like to play with discourse for, by giving ridiculous reasons, they discredit the seriousness of their interlocutors. They delight in acting in bad faith, since they seek not to persuade by sound argument but to intimidate and disconcert. If you press them too closely, they will abruptly fall silent, loftily indicating by some phrase that the time for argument is past.

-John Paul Sartre, 1944.

His ‘they’ were anti-Semites. But this clearly applies to all disingenuous assholes.

HT DamnYankeesLGM

4 thoughts on “The Ancient Trolls

    1. cleek Post author

      i’ve been meaning to read that… can never remember to buy it when i start looking for my next book.

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