FOLLOW BOREME
TAGS
<< Back to listing
Maajid Nawaz explains

Maajid Nawaz explains "whataboutery"

(3:47) Trump defender just can't stay on topic.

Share this post

You can comment as a guest, but registering gives you added benefits

Add your comment
Submit as guest (your name)

Copy code captcha


Submit as member (username / password)

CANCEL
Guest: (102 days ago)

Another interesting but entirely pointless exchange. Cut to the chase, Waz. 'Whataboutery' is just accusing someone of being inconsistent or hypocrtical. It can be entirely valid - he just needed to explain why he wasn't being hypocritical, which he eventually did. Trying to shut a caller down by smugly giving him a label isn't helpful.

"I'm a veggie".
"What about that Big Mac you ate yesterday?"
"Hah, whataboutery! Whataboutery! I win!" No, Nawaz. No.

Original comment

Another interesting but entirely pointless exchange. Cut to the chase, Waz. 'Whataboutery' is just accusing someone of being inconsistent or hypocrtical. It can be entirely valid - he just needed to explain why he wasn't being hypocritical, which he eventually did. Trying to shut a caller down by smugly giving him a label isn't helpful.

"I'm a veggie".
"What about that Big Mac you ate yesterday?"
"Hah, whataboutery! Whataboutery! I win!" No, Nawaz. No.

Add your reply
Submit as guest (your name)

Copy code captcha


Submit as member (username / password)

CANCEL
WalterEgo WalterEgo (102 days ago)

I don't think this is pointless. Whataboutery seems to be a growing interview technique that should be called out - if you can't answer a difficult question, redirect the attack to your rival and keep talking.

Now that you know what whataboutery is, you'll notice it everywhere. Kellyanne Conway is one of the world's greatest exponents of whataboutery. Without it, she'd be stuck for words.

Original comment

I don't think this is pointless. Whataboutery seems to be a growing interview technique that should be called out - if you can't answer a difficult question, redirect the attack to your rival and keep talking.

Now that you know what whataboutery is, you'll notice it everywhere. Kellyanne Conway is one of the world's greatest exponents of whataboutery. Without it, she'd be stuck for words.

Add your reply
Submit as guest (your name)

Copy code captcha


Submit as member (username / password)

CANCEL
Guest: (101 days ago)

Well accusations of inconsistency have been around for decades, it's nothing new. Giving it a label isn't enough to get you out of it... if you can't demonstrate that your position isn't inconsistent, just like with that veggie example, then isn't 'whataboutery' actually a perfectly valid criticism?

Sure, it can be pointless when used as a distraction to avoid answering the question, but so can what Nawaz is doing, namely labelling people with Wikipedia logical fallacies rather than unpicking and addressing their underlying concerns. Once you're aware of that labelling trend, it's another one that you see all the time (particularly online), often used as a distraction, and always used to score points rather than debate. You don't engage people, change their views or educate them by smugly giving them a label and using it to dismiss whatever they're trying to get at.

Original comment

Well accusations of inconsistency have been around for decades, it's nothing new. Giving it a label isn't enough to get you out of it... if you can't demonstrate that your position isn't inconsistent, just like with that veggie example, then isn't 'whataboutery' actually a perfectly valid criticism?

Sure, it can be pointless when used as a distraction to avoid answering the question, but so can what Nawaz is doing, namely labelling people with Wikipedia logical fallacies rather than unpicking and addressing their underlying concerns. Once you're aware of that labelling trend, it's another one that you see all the time (particularly online), often used as a distraction, and always used to score points rather than debate. You don't engage people, change their views or educate them by smugly giving them a label and using it to dismiss whatever they're trying to get at.

Add your reply
Submit as guest (your name)

Copy code captcha


Submit as member (username / password)

CANCEL
WalterEgo WalterEgo (100 days ago)

Whataboutery is not about pointing out an inconsistency, it's about redirecting a question so you can avoid answering it.

"I'm a veggie. What about the Big Mac you ate yesterday?" That's not whataboutery, that's simply pointing out an inconsistency.

"I'm a veggie. What about the Big Mac that Warren Buffet ate yesterday?" That's whataboutery.

Original comment

Whataboutery is not about pointing out an inconsistency, it's about redirecting a question so you can avoid answering it.

"I'm a veggie. What about the Big Mac you ate yesterday?" That's not whataboutery, that's simply pointing out an inconsistency.

"I'm a veggie. What about the Big Mac that Warren Buffet ate yesterday?" That's whataboutery.

Add your reply
Submit as guest (your name)

Copy code captcha


Submit as member (username / password)

CANCEL
Guest: (99 days ago)
Latest comment:

In the video Nawaz even refers to it a couple of times as the 'Tu Quoque' fallacy, otherwise known as the 'appeal to hypocrisy', so yes it absolutely is about inconsistency, even when used as a distraction. Look it up.

Nawaz's playground example "Well what about what he did?", ie. don't tell me off when you haven't told off those people - be consistent. He also feels the caller is saying "Yes but they did it too", ie. don't tell Trump off when you haven't told off Clinton - be consistent.

Obviously, the key move (that he eventually made) is to make it clear he is not being inconsistent - that he has at other times condemned Clinton for similar behaviour. 'Whataboutery' is often unfounded and often used to distract, so all the more reason to show when it's a false allegation rather than just sticking a label on it, thinking that's enough to shut down the conversation. People ought to avoid labels - judge less, understand more, don't you think?

Original comment
Latest comment:

In the video Nawaz even refers to it a couple of times as the 'Tu Quoque' fallacy, otherwise known as the 'appeal to hypocrisy', so yes it absolutely is about inconsistency, even when used as a distraction. Look it up.

Nawaz's playground example "Well what about what he did?", ie. don't tell me off when you haven't told off those people - be consistent. He also feels the caller is saying "Yes but they did it too", ie. don't tell Trump off when you haven't told off Clinton - be consistent.

Obviously, the key move (that he eventually made) is to make it clear he is not being inconsistent - that he has at other times condemned Clinton for similar behaviour. 'Whataboutery' is often unfounded and often used to distract, so all the more reason to show when it's a false allegation rather than just sticking a label on it, thinking that's enough to shut down the conversation. People ought to avoid labels - judge less, understand more, don't you think?

Add your reply
Submit as guest (your name)

Copy code captcha


Submit as member (username / password)

CANCEL
Guest: (102 days ago)

This is sadly fairly representative of modern political discourse. The focus has moved onto 'catching people out' and point-scoring rather than engaging with the underlying concerns. It's partly why phenomena like Trump and Brexit came about.

Original comment

This is sadly fairly representative of modern political discourse. The focus has moved onto 'catching people out' and point-scoring rather than engaging with the underlying concerns. It's partly why phenomena like Trump and Brexit came about.

Add your reply
Submit as guest (your name)

Copy code captcha


Submit as member (username / password)

CANCEL
Guest: (100 days ago)

Whataboutery, one more label

Original comment

Whataboutery, one more label

Add your reply
Submit as guest (your name)

Copy code captcha


Submit as member (username / password)

CANCEL
RELATED POSTS
Maajid Nawaz vs Muslim who wants Sharia
Maajid Nawaz vs Muslim who wants Sharia
David Pakman - Hugh Hefner, civil rights activist
David Pakman - Hugh Hefner, civil rights activist
Noam Chomsky - Is there anything you like about US foreign policy?
Noam Chomsky - Is there anything you like about US foreign policy?
Maajid Nawaz - Is an ethno-state a justifiable aspiration?
Maajid Nawaz - Is an ethno-state a justifiable aspiration?
Maajid Nawaz explains
Maajid Nawaz explains "whataboutery"