An answer from me analyzing the motivations of U.S. Senators for imposing a strenuous schedule for the impeachment proceedings was edited to remove "flamebait". The edit was not bad; the shorter answer has its merits.

But after some reflection I think that the removed passages were actually important for my argument: That the Senators have left their principles behind long before this trial is needed to understand just why finding the truth, or taking appropriate measures, is not part of their agenda.

Besides, the removed text contained a lot of factual information with references.

What do others think?


After 2 different users brought this answer to my attention through flags ("rude or abusive" and a custom flag calling the answer "smears against a political figure"), I read it carefully and decided that the answer did two things which shouldn't have a place on Politics Stack Exchange:

  • It accused the senators of one specific party of "abolishing or violating long-held political, economical and moral principles".
  • It accused a specific politician of "unabashed and blatant immorality".

These are both opinionated judgment calls. Maybe there is a point to them. But maybe there is not. Fact is, both the party and the politician in question still have enough supporters who do not share the judgment passed by this answer. So we can not just postulate that these judgments are "factual preconditions". It is not a judgment we should be passing on this website. As the help center says:

Politics Stack Exchange is for objective questions about governments, policies and political processes. It is not a place to advance opinions or debate, but rather for exchanging objective information about the policies, processes, and personalities that comprise the political arena.

And no, adding references doesn't fix the problem. The Internet is large. If you spend enough time looking, you can find enough critical articles to make any politician look like a complete monster. It might be easier with some politicians than with others, but we are not here to tell people what to think about specific politicians. That's what debate websites are for.

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    To be honest, both seem factual to me, and I supported them with unbiased sources. Both of them are also a central part to the argument. Laying bare the contradictions between officially (or formerly) held principles and undisputed actions (e.g. budget deficits, sexually immoral behavior) leads to the logical conclusion that these principles are violated or have been abolished. This is (in my opinion ;-) ) not an opinion which can be had one way or another, as a matter of taste; it is a mandatory conclusion. Note that judging the merits of these deeds as such is a different discussion! – Peter - Reinstate Monica Jan 27 '20 at 15:48
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    ctd. The discussion is not whether we abhor budget deficits or cheating on one's pregnant wife; the discussion is about the contradiction between official principles and overt, undisputed actions. We should not avoid that latter discussion because we may hurt somebody's political feelings. – Peter - Reinstate Monica Jan 27 '20 at 15:51
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    Oh, and Re "And no, adding references doesn't fix the problem. The Internet is large. If you spend enough time looking, you can find enough critical articles to make any politician look like a complete monster": I hope you don't subscribe to the idea that there is no discernible truth any longer because you can prove anything on the internet. In that case we can close the site. I took care to avoid the most partisan publications; I don't actually think that the facts are really up for debate here. – Peter - Reinstate Monica Jan 27 '20 at 15:54
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    @Peter-ReinstateMonica The facts themselves are not open for debate, but their interpretation and evaluation is. "Republicans gave up their values and Trump is a bad person" might be how you interpret and evaluate the facts, but that doesn't mean that your opinion is more valid than that of others. – Philipp Mod Jan 27 '20 at 15:57
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    Read carefully: I did not accuse. I listed "Trump's unabashed and blatant immorality" in the context of conservative values. That is not an accusation; I don't have particularly specific moral standards. But I cannot see how one can call this statement in doubt from a conservative Christian position: Trump cheated on his pregnant wife with a porn star and later payed her hush money. He also boasted about grabbing women "by the pussy". If I cannot call this immoral in a conservative value context I feel we cannot use the word at all. – Peter - Reinstate Monica Jan 27 '20 at 16:06
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    I edited the article again trying to be less incendiary. (This seems to fit with the mixed reception this meta question got.) While I don't really agree with your "references don't help" I understand that "flamebait" (a new, good word for me!) can quickly let discussions get out of hand. Btw, I also think that politics is all about interpretation, even Political Science. It's not natural science; it's about people. – Peter - Reinstate Monica Jan 28 '20 at 7:36

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