This is a blog to discuss philosophy, chess, politics,
C. S. Lewis, or whatever it is that I'm in the mood to discuss.
No "slippery-slope" argument is, per se, fallacious. If one is fallacious, the fallacy is not in the "slippery-slope" itself.AND, no one at all rejects "slippery-slope" arguments as being fallacious, per se. The persons (generally "liberals") who imagine they have refuted an argument by calling is a "slippery-slope" argument, invariably turn around and make a "slippery-slope" argument.
Feser has turned a slippery slope into a straw man. Impressive alchemy.
If in teaching an undergrad logic course, you can't gracefully beat down the undergrads being smart-asses with logic, then you are just weak. Teaching moments there, but is it a surprise that one option coming up at the conservative blog is that we shouldn't teach kids logic? LMAO. In over their heads.
What strawman? There are no people who argue that marriage is conventional rather than grounded in a natural order? There's nothing that follows simply from recognizing that marriage is ultimately a mutable concept?Also, where did Feser say that "we shouldn't teach kids logic"? He seemed to be saying that you can teach a subject wrongly, or in a skewed way, such that you aren't teaching what you're supposed to but rather a pale imitation.
Hi Crude: I didn't say he endorsed that, but that it even came under consideration is hilarious. tereotype, here, have a nice big steak.The straw man quip: he's not attacking a particularly strong argument. That's all. There are much better reasons to balk at the government interfering with marriage between two free adults, in a house of worship in which the minister/rabbi/priest feels it is his/her moral duty to perform such a ceremony. If you can't think of the better arguments for Uncle Sam keeping his sticky hands out of such a situation, don't feel bad most people in this country can't think of them either. :PI will let others have the last word on this topic, as I don't want to commit to finish out another gay marriage time-sink blog thread.
I didn't say he endorsed that, but that it even came under consideration is hilarious.Alright - where did it 'come under consideration'? That makes it sound like Feser said "We should consider not teaching children anything about logic... but on the whole, I suppose we should." Pretty far away from anything I read in the entry.The straw man quip: he's not attacking a particularly strong argument. That's all. Yeah, "attacking an argument that is weak" is not strawmanning.
... to summarize the important thing about the above exchange between BDK and Crude:BDK is (as I not infrequently point out) quite intellectually dishonest: he will say *anything*. And, as he knows that most persons who read/see his dishonesty would rather attack the person who explicitly calls attention to his dishonesty, rather than attack or censure the dishonesty itself, he knows that, socially speaking, he has a strong chance of getting away with it.
"I have long since concluded that teaching undergraduates about fallacies is a practice we should end" [etc]As an outsider it is funny to see Christians considering not teaching logic (obviously technically a subset of logic, so you got me there I was a bit glib in my glib one-liner). Rather than step up their pedagogy, wistfully consider the days when Plato wanted to wait until you were 30 to teach you to argue ("There is a reason Plato didn't want people studying dialectic until they were 30.")The argument for gay marriage that Feser reconstructs and then attacks is straw: everyone on the 'pro' side argues that marriage should be between two consenting human adults. To leave that out (in his first premise) creates a straw man to bring down. Hence my quip that he turned a slippery slope into a straw man. There are actually good arguments that real people use for gay marriage, and he doesn't consider any of them.As I said, I am not going to go down the gay marriage argument path, because it would become a 200 post thread. Just sayin' Feser groupies should be a bit more skeptical.Ilion it always brightens my day when I see the words "intellectually dishonest" next to your avatar. The irony is so consistent and fun when you say so-and-so can't address arguments but only people: please never stop posting.
Just for those literal-minded among you that can't recognize literary devices in blogs (admittedly they are hard to see, hence the need for smiley faces): when I wrote, "Rather than step up their pedagogy, wistfully consider the days when Plato wanted to wait until you were 30 to teach you to argue " I was not being literal, but employing a literary device. A smiley face for those that can spot it. :P ;-) =*U Hope that helps.
Poor old Feser. Furiously bagging up the catholic lowlands against the rising tide of reason.
BDKIt sounds to me like you believe marriage is conventional rather than grounded in a natural order?I'm simply shocked!;-)Cheers!
Ben trying to stir up trouble? :p
I scroll down the comments nowadays just to see what Papalinton has to say.
As an outsider it is funny to see Christians considering not teaching logic (obviously technically a subset of logic, so you got me there I was a bit glib in my glib one-liner). Great. A few points: The portion you quoted was from Brandon at Siris, not Ed. Ed later expressed some agreement with the full quote: "Whenever I teach logic in my Intro courses, I try to impress upon them that, while being able to evaluate an argument as valid is very useful, being able to evaluate it as invalid is virtually useless -- in real life there are too many ways in which premises can be implicit or related to their conclusion in non-obvious way. And I have long since concluded that teaching undergraduates about fallacies is a practice we should end: not only do they not use them critically, the usual accounts given for them are themselves often inaccurate, based on folklore that has never properly been examined."So yeah, your "glibness in your glib one liner" was a lot closer to a strawman than anything Feser wrote. No, Feser was not saying we shouldn't teach students logic, and the problem with teaching them about fallacies was in the typical examples of historical fallacies, and what the students often take away from them.Speaking of those strawmen...The argument for gay marriage that Feser reconstructs and then attacks is straw: everyone on the 'pro' side argues that marriage should be between two consenting human adults. To leave that out (in his first premise) creates a straw man to bring down.First off, on the claim that "everyone on the pro-gay marriage side thinks it should be between two consenting adults": wrong. That's just one example, but more could be found. Do you really think everyone, even close to everyone, on the 'pro gay marriage' side is ferociously dedicated to the whole 'two people' thing?Second, the thrust of Feser's piece is that no matter what you're committed to in that 'first premise', the second premise immediately opens it to further legitimate revision in principle anyway. The 'loving, consenting' part is every bit as open to revision as any 'two adults' part.So nah, you were pretty off-base. Maybe you just wanted to try some alchemy of your own.
"So nah, you were pretty off-base. Maybe you just wanted to try some alchemy of your own."Alchemy? as in: false = *Ta-Da* = true
Ilion, do you think all atheists deep down hate the very idea of God? Is that the root of the intellectual dishonesty?
Feser: "Whenever I teach logic in my Intro courses..."Teach logic? And this from a man who is utterly convinced a putrescent corpse levitated into the blue beyond? And he teaches 'logic'?I just 'love' the unwitting openly self-inflicted irony of this pious 'philosopher'.
Crude you are reaching here. I never said Feser advocated X, but that it was funny that it came up for (serious) discussion in his comments (and for what it's worth, he did take it seriously which I think is funny--I guess you don't).Also, finding someone arguing for polygamy and gay rights at the same time doesn't obviate what I said. It's like me killing Behe by citing Morris and Gish. Straw man. Again, you are taking blog comments too literally. You could say 'Nobody is advocating for young earth anymore' and me, being intelligent and able to interpret English, would know what you meant. I could be a pedantic prig and mention Morris and Gish, but that would just show I was being a jackanape or ignorant.Generally, crude, I should start putting emoticon tags by my quotes so you can better understand how serious I'm being.
BDKI remember reading an essay by a bisexual "Queer" Canadian woman arguing against gay marriage.She said so called "gay marriage" was just a way to assimilate gays into society by making them ape heterosexuals and conforming to their norms instead of accepting them as they are & who they are.Thus it doesn't have to be arch religious conservatives like myself or the Fesernator who are against gay marriage.There can be a gay case against gay marriage.
Ben yes, good point. While the gay people I know are vehemently for gay marriage rghts, I have read some of these more radical critiques (sort of like early feminist critiques of the institution of marriage). They tend to be more 'don't do it, you idiot' not 'make it illegal, government' type of arguments, but you bring up an interesting point.Note also I don't mean to say there are no thoughtful, interesting arguments against gay marriage. There might be that I haven't seen before.One reason I am being so glib and not taking this thread very seriously is because I don't take these arguments very seriously. IT's like I'm arguing with people that don't want blacks to marry whites, or don't want women to have the right to vote. I find it all quite silly and funny frankly.No offense Ben: it's been so long since I posted here I forgot I have to curtail my usual dismissive incredulity toward conservative/religious perspectives, so I apologize for that. I am usually better at turning on my 'don't be a jerk, these people actually believe this stuff and take it personally if you mock it' self-inhibitor at this blog.I'm not as good at it as Papalinton anyway I should leave it to the experts. :O (Emoticon added for Crude)
Teach logic? And this from a man who is utterly convinced a putrescent corpse levitated into the blue beyond? And he teaches 'logic'?I just 'love' the unwitting openly self-inflicted irony of this pious 'philosopher'.Please tell me why the naturalistic narrative of reality is a priori vastly more rational than a theistic narrative of reality. Thanks.
BDK, just for the record, at my university, which is completely secular, the idea of doing away with the teaching of fallacies in intro to logic classes is taken very seriously and endorsed by most of us.
Crude you are reaching here. I never said Feser advocated X, but that it was funny that it came up for (serious) discussion in his comments (and for what it's worth, he did take it seriously which I think is funny--I guess you don't).You said: "Teaching moments there, but is it a surprise that one option coming up at the conservative blog is that we shouldn't teach kids logic? LMAO."I pointed out that that was a misrepresentation of both Brandon and Ed's views on the matter. But oops, wait, this was all comedy. You were doing a bit, like Seinfeld. Clearly.Also, finding someone arguing for polygamy and gay rights at the same time doesn't obviate what I said. It's like me killing Behe by citing Morris and Gish. Straw man. Again, you are taking blog comments too literally.Yeah, hyper-literalist Crude here, never able to take a joke. ;)You threw out crap about 'strawmen' and 'not teaching children logic', and now you're doing the comedy dance upon correction. Do whatever you want, I'm content with what I showed. Clearly I'm being too serious!Generally, crude, I should start putting emoticon tags by my quotes so you can better understand how serious I'm being.No need, this whole exchange will serve as a reminder of just how seriously I should take you. ;)(PS. I threw emoticons into my post, so it's now impossible for me to have been wrong about anything. If something I said seems incorrect, clearly you have a sense of humor problem. QED.)
You know, Crude, the thing you're missing about BDK's intent is that he wanted to give lesson in 'meta-sophisty' ... and you've ruined it! Shame on you! [ ;) - obligatory smiley]
Anonymous "Ilion, do you think all atheists deep down hate the very idea of God?"Isn't it obvious, by their constant behavior, that *most* of the sort of 'atheists' with whom one deal on the internet hate God, hate the idea that God is, hate the logical possibility that God is, hate the logical demonstration that God is ... and thus, hate the reality that God is.Anonymous "Is that the root of the intellectual dishonesty?"God is Truth Itself. What are the odds that someone who hates Truth Itself is going to love honesty, or correct reason?========Consider just this one example -- I had, all on my own, before I 'met' Mr Reppert (and in fact, I 'met' him due to this), formulated my own, and more strongly stated, "argument from reason". Of course, I was heavily influenced by others, including CS Lewis and Plantinga. I've posted a condensed verson of my argument here: "You cannot reason" (aka, "YOU are the proof that God is").Now, a few weeks ago, an 'atheist' made a public attempt to refute my argument (see here). The argument she presents is scads better that any other "refutation" I've ever seen, which generally amount to "Yer stoopid", but it's still a *horrible* argument (and the comments by here readers are even worse), for, her argument boils down to this -- "No one can ever trust that an act of reasoning which follows the well-known rules of logic can deliver to us the truth of the matter".In other words, her "refutation" of my argument is a demonstration, in real time, and in her own words, of one of the things I claim is true of 'atheists' -- when push comes to shove, they will *aways* retreat into illogic and even irrationality, so as to protect their "atheism" from rational critical evaluation.
BDK it is always a pleasure.
Crude I admire your defense of Feser's infallability. There is nothing funny in in the fact that they considered not teaching the informal branch of logic (the branch that really matters in real life). And his attempt to justify what others call a slippery slope turned into an incredibly strong argument that many real advocates of gay marriage have pushed, using polygamy-happy premises that any advocate of gay marriage would endorse.Kudos, Crude. You got me. Ilion you are a genius I love your posts even if the content is so redundant from post-to-post.
Crude are you a computer programmer? If not you would probably be very good at it.
Ilion said:Isn't it obvious, by their constant behavior, that *most* of the sort of 'atheists' with whom one deal on the internet hate God, hate the idea that God is, hate the logical possibility that God is, hate the logical demonstration that God is ... and thus, hate the reality that God is.This is why I love (no hate here) Ilion. Entertaining, full of verve. I want you to have your own reality show Ilion. It would just be fun.I think some people mistake 'devil's advocacy' for hatred or (for the more sane) personal animosity. Loftus had a habit of this. It's like an invitation to be toyed with.
Come to think of it, Feser IS the current father of meta-sophistry.
The slippery slope is rarely given as a logical argument anyway, but rather as a sociological one given the past few hundred years or so. In the long term, accepting this or that liberal proposition for the reformation of society never seems to put an end to the proffering of liberal propositions for the reformation of society. Instead, like clockwork, there's always another proposition on the way. Older generations, who made the first LPftRoS, may well have been completely honest when they said at the time that they desired to go no further, yet when the younger generations make their new LPftRoS the older ones always end up defaulting and signing on wholesale. Thus, what remains of civilization is reduced to an uneasy wait for the next proposed outrage. It's been going on for centuries now, but will end at some point.
BDK: "Kudos, Crude. You got me. Crude are you a computer programmer? If not you would probably be very good at it."LOL.I am confident that the correct person(s) will fully understand my meaning.
Hi Anonymous"Please tell me why the naturalistic narrative of reality is a priori vastly more rational than a theistic narrative of reality. Thanks."I didn't spot your query to me. I'm sorry for the late reply.The simplest response is perhaps the most profound and closest to reality, whatever that word might mean. It is the natural narrative of the very existence of the physical you, that allows you to indulge in the ideation of metaphysics. Metaphysics can only be derived from the physical act of thought, and the very physical act of thinking is only possible with a physical brain. And for the fact of actual physical existence, there is far greater explanatory power in support of a naturalistic narrative for reality than a theistic narrative of reality. Indeed it is also a fact there are almost an incalculable number of theistic narratives, throughout recorded history, most if not all, being divergent, competing, disparate and conflicting, perhaps signals they shine a far dimmer and hazier light on 'reality' than does a naturalistic narrative. And the corollary question is, which theistic narrative is the true one? Remember, christianity is very much only a part player in the field of theistic narratives, with no more or less claim to 'reality' than any other promulgated theistic speculation. And just as the 'chicken and the egg' conundrum has now been resolved, we know that physical existence precedes thought. Anything and everything else is either grounded in natural/scientific proofs or is just speculation.Oh. You don't know about the 'egg and chicken' resolution? Well the egg came first. Science has shown that the closest extant relative to dinosaurs are birds, and in the period of the dinosaur there was no such thing as a chicken [birds] but there were eggs because dinosaurs laid eggs [irrespective of cold or warm blooded varieties]. Effectively there is an unbroken chain of evidence of the existence of eggs from the earliest dinosaur ancestors of the bird, to today's chicken, as confirmed in the fossil record.Physical existence is a necessary antecedent to any theistic speculation of 'reality' that might ensue. Even the bible unwittingly confirms this in its highly conjectural and mistaken notion of a heaven, in that one can only get to heaven after one has been born [that is, after physical coming into existence]. It's rather funny to think that even heaven itself, has been around for only 6,000 years since the advent of Adam and Eve. What do you think, Anonymous? Has heaven been around like a vacant dusty house for eternity only to begin filling in the last 6,000 years? Or is there a different reality? What say you on the theistic 'reality' of heaven?
Ilion why cant you just be nice? You're very belligerent and are giving Christians a bad name.
Anonymouse, why can't you just honest? You (imply that you) claim to worship Truth Himself, and yet you make it obvious the you are more concerned to get a patronizing pat on the head, while they sharpen their knives, from those who hate Truth Himself than you are to serve and reflect Truth Himself?Have you ever even read the Bible? Christ, whose name Christians wear, is not a nice man (nor is he the feminized doormat that is popular in the Church of Nice).
Methings anon is a troll. Christ preached the importance of love, even for his enemies. Love doesn't imply coddling, but it does imply charity.Unfortunately, someone expecting to see love in a blog that likes to debate religious matters is going to be a wee bit disappointed.I'm curious from Christians here, are there other Christian blogs that don't fall into the know-it-all pedant hole (in which I'd include Feser, Valicella, and a few I won't name), but more thoughtful and nuanced like Victor?
It is also very hard to find "Skeptical" blogs that don't fall into the know-it-all pedant hole as well. I'm having trouble thinking of an exception. This is why I left the skeptic/atheist groups as fast as I originally joined them. Perhaps exapologist. Ken Pulliam used to be great, but unfortunately we've lost him. FOr some reason the know-it-alls end up high on the rankins (e.g., debunking christianity, pharyngula, etc)..Confirmation bias?
Exapologist's blog is indeed not shrill crap, but nuanced and smart.
BDK: "Methings anon is a troll."But you also frequently assert that I am a troll.Or, and I missing some nuance?BDK: "I'm curious from Christians here, are there other Christian blogs that don't fall into the know-it-all pedant hole (in which I'd include Feser, Valicella, and a few I won't name), but more thoughtful and nuanced like Victor?…It is also very hard to find "Skeptical" blogs that don't fall into the know-it-all pedant hole as well. I'm having trouble thinking of an exception. …"Well, you know, there is “know it all” and there is “know it all.”Most of the time, when someone accuses someone else of being a “know it all” or of being “arrogant” in his arguments (*) (such as when someone accuses me of either), what he is *really* saying is this: “Waaaaaaaaa! You’re daring to dispute what I am asserting!”(*) The two accusations are the same, really: “know it all” would be the more masculine and direct way (in a school-boy sort of way) of making it; “arrogant” would be the more feminized and indirect way (in a passive-aggressive academese manner) of making it.=========As for Feser and Valicella, they are both, to put it in the most polite terms, asses. They are frequently right, and they are right about most things they assert; but they are, nonetheless, intellectually dishonest about at least some of the things about which they are wrong. For, as with you (*) and most of the “liberals” and so-called atheists who hang out at VR’s blog, they are not simply mistaken about that of which they are wrong; no, no, no, they turn vicious when presented with valid criticism of their error. They can deal with an incorrect criticism made of that about which they are correct; they cannot deal with a valid criticism made of that about which they are wrong.(*) While you’re not as bad at this as most of the ‘atheists’ and/or “liberals” here – and thus I even bother to read your posts – you do have the problem.
... oh, and the accusation frequently has the sub-text: "And you're daring to make a better case than I can make. No fair!"
Most of the time, when someone accuses someone else of being a “know it all” or of being “arrogant” in his arguments (*) (such as when someone accuses me of either), what he is *really* saying is this: “Waaaaaaaaa! You’re daring to dispute what I am asserting!”... oh, and the accusation frequently has the sub-text: "And you're daring to make a better case than I can make. No fair!"LOL, this is spot-on. I can't count how many times throughout my adolescent years that people, particularly my mother, had called me "arrogant" during my verbal exchanges with them. Then I'd point out that they're using "arrogant" incorrectly. Then they'd claim again that I was "so arrogant." Etc.
Once, before I left for college, my mother snarled at me: "You're just like your father!" ... by which she meant: "You're coldly analyzing the extremely hateful and hurtful (seeing that, as your mother, I have a unique standing to hurt you emotionally) thing I just a minute ago snarled at you, and you are declining to respond in kind, and that just infuriates me even more!"
Anon says, "I can't count how many times throughout my adolescent years that people, particularly my mother, had called me "arrogant" during my verbal exchanges with them. Then I'd point out that they're using "arrogant" incorrectly. Then they'd claim again that I was "so arrogant." "Ilion says," "You're coldly analyzing the extremely hateful and hurtful (seeing that, as your mother, I have a unique standing to hurt you emotionally) thing I just a minute ago snarled at you, and you are declining to respond in kind, and that just infuriates me even more!""It seems you boys have a whole lot of growing up yet to do. This may explain your spate of commentary on matters best described as nonmaterial, incorporeal, intangible; or even psychological; transcendent, is yet to mature.But then, christian apologist Feser's chosen vocation [Philosophy?] seems not to have had much influence and control in his refraining from indulging in the dark arts of meta-sophistry.
While I was a bit glib, and overstated things here, I should say that of all the commenters, I find Crude to be the most thought-provoking, he has forced me to clarify, change, and pushed my thought into new directions. That used to be the roll of Jason Pratt. Crude I find incredibly annoying at times, but in that way that indicates he has hit on a weakness in my overall position. In my book on consciousness, I would pay to have Jason, Crude, and Victor give comments to see if my argument hangs together (in what I think is a Half-Life style double-barrel shotgun to the face of dualism, they might be able to show it is just a bb gun). Of course, outside of this blog context, Chalmers, Nagel, and perhaps Alvin Noe would be on my "dream team" of critics.That said, since blogging is to serious thought/writing as blitz is to serious chess, I'll be taking a break from all religious/skeptical/etc blogs for a few months. Massive amount of work at lab right now, massing amoung of writing, and a 14 month old daughter that deserves this attention. Thanks folks for keeping me honest, or at least less dishonest (Ilion that's for you).PS Go Patriots!
It seems you boys have a whole lot of growing up yet to do.It may seem that way to you, but you'd be dead wrong if you think that your "seeming" is representative of reality, seeing as you haven't the slightest clue about either my or Ilion's familial histories. Absent that, you're merely being an insufferable nag.I mean, I "seem" a lot of things regarding my self, others, and reality generally, but thankfully I've been spared the mental dissonance that results from confusing "seeming" with "knowing."
I think this link is good to remind me what is most important. Yes, we are in a cigar shop.
Anonymous"I mean, I "seem" a lot of things regarding my self, others, and reality generally, but thankfully I've been spared the mental dissonance that results from confusing "seeming" with "knowing.""So the upshot of what you are saying is that, while I [PapaL] can only 'seem', you [Anonymous] 'know' you have a lot of growing up still to do. That's a fair call. Yes, I know nothing of your familial histories, but I can infer from the manner and form of your written communication, and the content of the personal snapshot from your life that you have selected, to illustrate the point you are making, that your mother/son relationship still figures prominently in your psyche and reflects in your everyday discourse.I mean, I love my mum too. But it has been a very long time since I have had to pull an example about my relationship with my mum, from my personal collection of explicative and exegetical illustrations of my life-experiences.Are you both still in short pants without a fly?
Ilion,YOur argument to which you linked had an incomplete list of axioms (easily repaired) and unsound axioms (fatal). I have crafted a response for you to dismiss out-of-hand.
"... for you to dismiss out-of-hand."Two things:1) having only glanced at it, and having seen therein that you are impressed with Elizabeth Liddle's (ahem) "refutation”, I suspect that dismissal-out-of-hand will be warranted;2) having seen, over a number of years, how you “argue”, I suspect that dismissal-out-of-hand will be warranted.And, one other thing: what, you can’t write in English? If your supposed argument cannot be made sense of, in English, then I shall not waste my time with it. I presented an argument that can be understood by any normally intelligent person with even a moderate education (*). A quick glance at your supposed refutation of it shows what appears to be gobble-de-gook; if I determine that it is, then I shall indeed dismiss it.(*) Once, I was giving a convenience store clerk a verbal synopsis of it, and she jumped ahead two steps/points.===The WV for the pose is "lessess", which seems somehow fitting.
Considering the state the proof was in when I found it, I take great humor in your preference for it to be in English.I don't recall saying I was impressed with Liddle, it was really a very basic, accurate objection that your proof is not about atheism generally, but a certain form of reductive materialism specifically.
Post a Comment