Monday, April 16, 2012

Goal: Debate by Stating All Evidence

To quote myself, "If you can think of a way to be more convincing by presenting evidence against the desired conclusion, please let me know. I'm the only one I can safely say is impressed by such acts." Though, naturally, writing that un-convinced me of it. I can think of several examples of the "It's true that, but..." construction. There's still some problems with how it's carried out but I'll leave that as an exercise for the reader.

It made me realize something else, too. If being balanced is good, why not take the limit? Why not supercharge it?

New Goal: debate by stating all the relevant evidence I know, for, against, and confusing, about the dispute in question. Completely ignore time/length constraints and convenience. See what happens.

(What I'm posting later today also helped, as I made conscious and explicit what I think happens when I examine an assumption and really try to settle it. Specifically how the evidence is distributed across conclusions.)


Jehu said...

Sometimes when I'm writing, I'll preemptively attack the potential objections by raising them and showing that they aren't terribly strong. But if you're debating someone with an audience, it's more effective to lure them into your preregistered location. Observers score such matters (and the observers are generally all that count), more like a boxing match than an actual search for truth.

Alrenous said...

Thing is, I'm actually searching for truth. I'm not out to score points with observers who aren't like minded.

Still, now you've said, 'observers are all that count,' I find I agree with you. But I find winning the observation battle so easy as to be boring, though. Making people look stupid is too easy, given how smart reality is by comparison.

Perhaps as a consequence, perhaps not, but I find winning the boxing match to be a reason to doubt my position. I'm only comfortable when I'm losing.

More fun is luring (goading) observers into participating. Each new debater is a new chance to hear something I haven't already heard.

Jehu said...

If truth is actually what you're after, debate is a poor way to get at it. Wager is far better. Make testable predictions using your world model and use success and failure to refine said model.
This is the wisdom inside the Southern Redneck's query:
If yer' so smart why ain't you rich?'.
Debate is mostly for convincing the rubes in who...whom conflicts :-)

Alrenous said...

Agree that most debates are poor. There's so much potential there, though, and I've learned to exploit some of it. This is an attempt to mine for more unpredictable responses.

Amusingly I have planed out a short post for tomorrow, about an example of how I evaluate my predictions, tomorrow.

Also, I am rich, or at least I have been rich enough for my purposes for several years. We'll see if I can keep it up.

Mainly because I'm content to be single so my annual expenses sans taxes are roughly 20k. The next higher tier of money that would be qualitatively, significantly different for me is well into the