Saturday, September 24, 2011

Notes Vox and Ilk vs. cl of Mental warfare

I tried to find out what Vox thinks about intuition, as it is relevant to whether his beliefs are accurate. (He of course didn't answer, despite requiring everyone to answer his questions. [Primarily enforced against people he doesn't like.] He felt the need to provide an excuse once, but naturally it was lame and self-refuting. Didn't have time or some such. Plausible deniability ahoy.)

Instead, I found that cl and Vox are arguing about each other's character. Hey, new debate to fisk!
I very much doubt either Vox nor DS will ever take my notes into account, hence calling them 'notes' - they're for my own benefit. "Let us not pretend to doubt in philosophy what we do not doubt in our hearts." Frankly, neither of them would believe me even if I were exactly right. This implies neither cl nor Vox will believe me about this, either, and as such I am going to take some non-habitual steps.

Usually, when someone objects, I first assume I don't understand the objection and it is true, then when I must I assume I'm being unclear and they've misunderstood which means others will misunderstand, then I assume they have a plausible objection which I should dispel, and only at last do I assume they simply can't understand. However, this is for my own use and I will abide by my own standards and only my own standards. This basically means I'll answer an objection if it addresses something I've missed and otherwise I'll be ignoring it.

If you happen to like it, great. If not, close the tab.

Their insults are all right and their defences are all wrong. Vox's scoring is inconsequential and cl is slinging all sorts of personal insults while claiming that Vox should take the high road. Vox is assuming he should condescend, and as a result misunderstanding cl's comments. Vox is indeed sneaky; he's got a pretty heavy duty sophism infection. Vox is saying he doesn't care but sure as hell not acting like he doesn't care...and slinging personal insults. Yes, the ilk can be pretty echoy, but A) that's mainly a vocal minority and B) Vox encourages dissent, unlike Myers. Of course neither ever change their mind due to dissent.

-All four of these various scores would be perfectly valid and are supported by the evidence. However, only (d) tells you exactly what happened so far, which was my entire purpose in mentioning it. I'm not the scorekeeper. I don't declare the winner.

It seems like I need a sophistry theme song. I get tired of simply saying 'sophistry' each time, and songs are entertaining.

So, I already knew this, which is why I noticed that cl's complaint about the score didn't hold water. However...Vox didn't say it. Until he did. He laid a trap and cl sprung it.
This - as should now be obvious - isn't valid. It only proves that Vox is dishonest, or at best incapable of meaningful honesty, and that cl was too honest to be familiar with the trap. It's looking like this is all predictable from the AWCA label, actually. If you think contempt is a good strategy, you're probably unable to understand your opponents, and hence epistemically broken. (I can explain how this operationally works, but don't feel like it at present.)

That aside...
Vox is rejoicing that he chose the judge wrong, as measured by his own metrics. "I failed, woo." "I was totally blindsided, yeah, wow." Not that I really expect due diligence in an internet debate - not really worthwhile - but I do expect voters not to celebrate when it turns out their failure of responsibility has its natural negative consequences.

As for the other side, I confronted cl about his insults and he denied he was slinging them. "And you wonder why people find you off-putting," indeed.

Being sexist is not good strategy.

-"So I ask my readers: did any of you get the impression that I entered into the debate as opposed to judging it?"

Yes, it is easy to confuse the two. Indeed, this is why I didn't want to judge unless I had to - my actual judgments are about the quality of the arguments, which everyone would confuse with entering the debate. I would have had to refrain from justifying myself and other unsavoury things to avoid this impression.

(I am elitist - I think only those competent to recognize the difference should have the right to have their opinion respected on debates. Yes, this does imply the sticky problem of determining who is competent.)

-"Did alexamenos “enter into the debate” for doing the same damned thing? Scott Scheule? I don’t think so."

They did, in the sense they would be confused as doing so. And indeed if they'd insulted Spacebunny they'd have been accused of it too - nobody notices because they weren't out-grouped.

-I’ve washed my hands and my soul of this poisonous chimera.

Speaking of due diligence, I could have told you in advance that detailed judging was a waste of time, if you intended your judgments to be read honestly. How did you miss that? For example, I entitled these 'notes' because they're for my own benefit. I can guarantee that not a single Ilk will find an iota of value in them.

-"I disagree, and counter that you are blazingly, glaringly, unequivocably in the wrong on the issue of when and how a scoring system should be instantiated, and by whom."

Everyone else realizes the score is inconsequential precisely because he's a contestant. So by his scoring system, DS can't win anymore. Yes, and when that happens, you say, "Well, that is a contestant's scoring system - I'm not surprised it makes himself the winner. As you can see (ref: my judgment) I disagree." At this point Vox looks bad and you don't.

In reality, you both look bad. Indeed worse because you're bad and fighting each other.
Intriguingly, cl is intuitively correct. Vox is a sophist and introduced the scoring system precisely to bias his readership towards a no-win situation for DS. However, cl's actual arguments barely touch on this.

Moreover, anyone who was paying attention knew that DS was in a no-win situation from minute 0. How do we predict that Vox will win? Because the Ilk are involved. The arguments have no causal power at all in the matter. (Falsification, put statistically; Vox can't win every debate. The Ilk thinks he does. Well, I suppose he can if he ensures he never debates anyone competent, but that would - as should be obvious - prove absolutely nothing.)

The point is that, as usual, both sides deserve to lose.

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