Answer to previous example: There are several things wrong with this quote. We will start from the most basic and move towards the most obvious. Thankfully, the lines line up in that order.
The first problem is that the conversation happened. We assume the topic to be feminism or something of the sort. I forget if I’ve explicitly said this before, but arguing in general doesn’t work for the same reasons protesting doesn’t work. Feminism is one of the best examples of where arguing doesn’t work, not just because there are enough people who believe it to show that arguing is frustrating and gets nowhere, but also because there are enough people who are against it who agree with the stated basic tenets that can understand why their comrades are wrong. (This second half of the balance, for example, is significantly undermanned in comparison for the topics of government and race) It does not really matter where an anti-feminism post is made – that is to say, it is not relevant whether it is an original post on your own site or if it is a response on a feminism-oriented board. If it was on a page owned by you, then you do not “take the bait” when an inflamed response comes.
It is probably true that you should never “take the bait”. I have yet to make some kind of a proof for it, but it applies in this situation so we’ll leave it for now.
The second problem is in the second line. If someone asks you a question, you do not tell them they’re dumb. The third line is a decent example of what you do if you must be glib.
I do not think this needs extra explanation. That, and it’s already been covered extensively tangentially by the general topic of this blog.
The third problem is in the last line. I have gone over this before (ctrl+f “infinite weight”), but it really doesn’t matter why you want to do something if what you’re doing doesn’t get there. The method in question is vocal explication – i.e. communication. In communication, you must always first respect the other party – if you don’t, nothing else matters. They won’t listen to you, thus won’t care to figure out your concepts, thus won’t care to even see if they agree with you. The problem would not be so bad if it were simply an insult (“DUM”). In this case, however, and in most pretended intellectual discussions on online forums, the problem is that people are simply talking past each other.
Let us assume that the feminist in question is out for the purpose of defending her gender. How does she plan to do this? In war there are two ways of winning, and only one of them really works. The first is to make them run out of the capacity to fight, either by draining their stamina, their supply line, or something else. This is attrition warfare. The other way is to make them run out of the will to fight. This is generally achieved through politics, but of course backhanded tactics also exist. The former doesn’t work as efficiently, but I won’t get into it here because that’s the one that doesn’t work in debate. You can’t get people to run out of the capacity to fight in an online battle of ideas. This is vaguely less true in real life, where you can pull a gun out on them, blackmail them, or something similar, but still holds true generally. The latter is the only way you can get people to join you – make them agree, or at least pacify them so that they don’t care about disagreeing.
“SHE’S DEFENDING HER GENDER” does not achieve this.
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This one won’t be split into Q/A between entries. I have things which are incorrect, which I also give the response to.
They’re parts of a conversation I had with some lab mates for physics since the lab this week didn’t demand much mental intensive work. It started with a random comment when I asked if we should get another piece of the large paper. Went in directions I forget for reasons I do not understand, but it doesn’t really matter.Here are two of the sections I remember.
Italicized are not mine.
Don’t you care about saving trees?
‘The environment’ doesn’t mean anything to me.
Wow, so cold.
I find these “save the planet” environmental campaigns very annoying. So you say save the trees… as opposed to saving something else? I agree that we shouldn’t use more paper than we need to, but that’s not in the context of saving the planet. I conserve paper because I conserve everything. I don’t understand what it means to save the planet. Save the current system and environment of the world? Against what, the next one? Then you’re back to where you started, because you’re still destroying a world – just not the one you’re living in. My head can’t handle that stuff. But I do understand myself, and I get nowhere by using more than I need. To say “save the trees” to me implies that there are some things not worth using with moderation, or not worth using correctly. I do not agree.
But in the end, you’re doing the same thing. You don’t use more than you need, so you will be saving the planet.
Right, but it’s not the same thing. I start with myself, and I end up helping the environment by tangent. To start out with “saving the planet’ and then going back is, well, literally backwards.
“Should” is a concept that only exists in my mind. What other people do is part of reality, something I find cause and effect in and react to. To say “should” to other people, “you SHOULD do this”, is pointless to me. I don’t really care about what other people do.
Do you plan on having children?
Would you let them do hard drugs?
I would raise them in such a way that they would not want to do hard drugs. I would let them, yes. Would they? No. But if they do for whatever reason start using them, I would trust that they were using them for something they believed justifiable. Or I wouldn’t, and [I’d] react accordingly.
I do have my reasons for using a second sheet of paper, by the way. It’s the same reason why I don’t like using back and front for homework – makes everything I write harder to read, and I can’t lay it all out at one time when I need to look for something efficiently. Is that worth using whatever amount more resources?
To me, it is.