Shank’s Spiel: Elitism
I have been called many things over the course of my tenure at QGN: “fanboy”, “wrong”, and “paid off” come to mind. But perhaps none ring more true than being called an “elitist”. I find this odd, as this label, meant as a derogatory jape to induce anger from me, has the complete opposite effect as originally intended.
Allow me to explain.
There is a clear difference between thinking you are correct, and actually being correct. The former is grounded, to a certain extent, on grandiose delusions while the latter remains planted in the terra firma of irrefutable truths.
Still don’t understand? Allow this example. You come to me and adamantly say that the number 3 is larger than the number 6. You are adamant, adamant I say! You decree that you are correct because, of course, why would you be wrong? You believe with all the fiber of your being that you are, indeed, correct.
I then point out the simple error in your mathematical logic and tell you that no, 3 is not greater than 6. In fact, 6 is greater than 3. You then label me an elitist, having judged me so for disagreeing with you.
This is admittedly a truly ludicrous scenario, but one that should have you frustrated and angry by now. You should be upset that whoever called me an elitist for pointing out the irrefutable fact that 6 is larger than 3 is getting away with it.
But such is the way of the internet. I am called an elitist for pointing out some very fundamental and irrefutable truths, that the best PC will always completely crush the best console in terms of pure computational power, that the Xbox One is genuinely weaker than the PS4, its closest competitor, and that during last gen, many PC ports were dumbed down and compromised simply to run on the lowest common denominator, the console.
These things are facts. They cannot be changed simply because you don’t believe them to be true, just like 3 will never be larger than 6. I’m sorry, but logic and rationale simply don’t work that way.
And this is the beauty of numbers and empircal figures. They are unchanging and unyielding. They don’t care if you believe one thing and I the other. They are what they are and don’t presume to be anything else. That people still wish to debate their authenticity and bend them to suit their situation is frankly, pitiful.
All of this leads to that example. I chose this simple mathematical comparison to convey a metaphor of sorts. It may sound a bit bourgeois but bear with me.
In this scenario, imagine that the number 3 is a console. It doesn’t matter which one, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS4, whatever. All that is important is that the number 3 represents a console. Now imagine that the number 6 represents a PC. Now do some magical swapping and viola. Your statement now reads, “PC is greater than console”.
Now this is the statement that draws the greatest ire from my critics who will be quick to point out the elitist nature of this sentence. However, I will argue, successfully, that their assumption is grounded in falsehoods and missing context.
For example, the best PC is greater than a console when looking from a computational standpoint, from which I always look at such things. My 780 ti operates at 5.1 TFLOPs while the most powerful console, the PS4, operates at a wholly modest 1.8 TFLOPS.
There is no way to spin this. The numbers tell the truth. 5.1 is larger than 1.8. And in the world of processing and silicon, this increase in performance can be measured, that is, this gap is a very real thing that has very tangible consequences.
People tend to forget that I own both new consoles as well my gaming PC. I like them all for separate reasons, but I like my PC the most because it is the most powerful. Did it cost more? Yes, but that’s not the point. From a strictly power standpoint, it wipes the floor with my PS4. This isn’t arrogance. It’s a recognition of a real fact.
So to then turn around and call me an elitist for stating that my PC is more powerful than your PS4 is frankly pitiable and wholly amusing. I find it pitiable that you can’t understand simple number theory. I find it amusing that you don’t want to accept cold hard facts.
This leads me to a rather cynical but perhaps not so far fetched conclusion. Either my critics simply don’t know what they’re talking about or, perhaps more likely, they don’t want to accept the facts. That is, they don’t want to accept something as true if it goes against their belief.
And frankly, that’s ok. I don’t care if your opinion is different to mine. Really, I don’t. However, I do take issue if your opinion is based on complete and utter falsehoods, one that carries with it no real evidence or credibility because at least for me, there is almost nothing worse than an opinion based entirely on fiction.
And I find this darkly amusing. I don’t understand how facts can be ignored and dismissed so regularly (IGN), especially if they are staring you right in the face. It’s unprofessional and misleading, and most importantly, it’s blatantly incorrect. But again, it is precisely this lack of recognition of logic that will always be the weapon of choice for my critics, and certainly for some mainstream outlets as well. I suppose they get more clicks that way.
In any event, I am not ashamed to be labelled an elitist. I am not angered in any way for speaking in raw facts and numbers, even if those numbers tell a story completely counter to what my critics may want to believe. For that is the beauty of numbers. They don’t change and don’t care what you believe.
So go head and continue to call me an elitist. I take pride in that label and welcome any discussion and criticism you may wish to send my way. But perhaps, at the risk of me not taking you seriously, you may want to look up the facts first.
They never lie.