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Author Topic: A conundrum for all skeptics, including TomDavidson
MattP
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quote:
I feel like I'm talking to a bunch of Young Earth Creationists here.
I just had to give this particular bit of irony a quick nod. The type of evidence you present and the way in which you frame it is very much in line with the creation scientist schtick.

They provide lists of articles and research which have not survived a peer review process or which explain phenomena that have plausible explanations other than the one they are promoting. They, like you, also rely on a multiple of logical fallacies including, but not limited to: proof by example, argument from ignorance/incredulity, appeal to probability, wishful thinking, appeal to authority, and appeal to the majority.

I'm skeptical of anyone who can't present their case without gratuitous use of logical fallacies which have no evidentiary value, such as "Do you realize how many thousands and thousands of sightings and abductions have been reported?"

I don't think anyone here thinks you are crazy in a "danger to society" sense. By "crazy" they mean you accept certain ideas which have little direct evidence as being very likely. Not exactly a major psychosis, but perhaps a mild delusion. Plenty of people in much worse shape have families, jobs, etc. Undoubtedly, I have delusional beliefs as well, but I try very hard to recognize and eliminate them rather than feed them.

[ March 08, 2007, 04:01 PM: Message edited by: MattP ]

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johnson
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I've learned that people who use someone else's logical fallacies as their sole method of rebuttal know nothing about the issues. TomD, raise your hand, you practically invented this method of argument. You are a close runner-up, Matt. I, on the other hand, find it faintly funny to say outlandish things, purposely provide very little support, and see what folks come up with. Sometimes it's possible to learn something that way. In other words, I'm crazy, but I play crazier than I am sometimes.

I'm serious, there's support for many UFO sightings. Not all of them, not even most. Some of the sightings could really only be some kind of advanced aircraft, though, in any realistic sense.

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DonaldD
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sometimes?
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0Megabyte
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Where was that timecube link, people? I lost it, and I think it's time.
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johnson
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Love these ad homs. Pointing out someone e'se logical fallacies, ad homs....amateurish. If you had something intelligent to say on the subject, you wouldn't break out the ad homs. that's my assumption.

[ March 08, 2007, 04:25 PM: Message edited by: johnson ]

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Everard
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Pointing out logical falacies is not amateurish. Without proper logical progression, we can't be sure that our arguments have any value.
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MattP
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quote:
I've learned that people who use someone else's logical fallacies as their sole method of rebuttal know nothing about the issues. TomD, raise your hand, you practically invented this method of argument.
Pointing out that a fallacy is being relied on renders an argument moot. There's nothing else to say until you come up with a position that does rely on the fallacy.

The use of fallacy does not indicate that your position is wrong, but it does indicate that you approach ideas rather uncritically. It hurts your credibility.

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philnotfil
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OK, if we can prove that aliens didn't give us acupuncture, does that mean they don't exist?
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johnson
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The way I see it, the opposition broke out the ad homs first. That says it all.
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MattP
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quote:
I, on the other hand, find it faintly funny to say outlandish things, purposely provide very little support, and see what folks come up with.
You'll get better results by just being up front about what you believe, why you believe it, and what you're interested in getting out of the conversation. We don't generally role-play here. If you act like a crazy guy, you'll get treated like a crazy guy.

I assure you we can have a very interesting conversation about the likelihood of extraterrestrial life and even visitations to Earth, but not starting with the wholly unsupported position that aliens gave us acupuncture.

If you want to talk about the physical properties and detection of meridians, we can do that to, but you're not going to get much respect if you start the conversation with an adversarial tone (hey skeptics!) and then scoff when logical flaws in your arguments are pointed out.

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caladbolg1125
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quote:
OK, if we can prove that aliens didn't give us acupuncture, does that mean they don't exist?
How do you prove that something doesn't exist? I would think that one can only prove things to exist and that simply not finding evidence of something doesn't mean it doesn't exist. Right? If it is proven that aliens didn't give us acupuncture that's no argument for their non-existence.

[ March 08, 2007, 04:47 PM: Message edited by: caladbolg1125 ]

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MattP
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quote:
The way I see it, the opposition broke out the ad homs first. That says it all.
The opposition? If someone is out of line, get annoyed at that someone. Don't just extend that animosity towards everyone else who disagrees with you. We're not in teams here. I don't recall making any personal attacks, though I have been critical about how you've presented your arguments.

Edit to add: The first ad hominem I see is your "Are you being deliberately stupid?" to Tom, unless you are talking about Tom's "crazy-ass theory" comment which seems to be a description that you agree with.

[ March 08, 2007, 04:58 PM: Message edited by: MattP ]

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johnson
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that's right, matt, pull the discussion onto matters that you know.
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Everard
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You still haven't shown anything, johnson, that lends any support to the idea that there are aliens showing people in india and china these "meridians" which may or may not actually exist, and nothing you have shown demonstrates that they really do exist.

So right now you are standing on a logical box built of empty air.

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MattP
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quote:
Originally posted by johnson:
that's right, matt, pull the discussion onto matters that you know.

I don't follow, and I'm not even being deliberately stupid. Any stupidity is accidental. Can you elaborate, please?
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johnson
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Empty air? How about your defense of communism, Ev? That begs the question, IMHO. Common sense tells you to seek the middle ground when possible, and I don't see how communism is any kind of middle ground. I'm not against it in theory, but the Stalinist purges are more than enough reason, IMHO, to be against it.

Matt, check the wikipedia on UFOs. Some of it looks interesting, particularly the links to reports of Air Force pilots and astronauts who reported UFOs.

The meridians exist.

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Everard
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More empty air, johnson. Whether I am right or wrong about communism has less then nothing to do with whether or not you have supplied a logical argument.

"Common sense tells you to seek the middle ground when possible"

Why? The middle ground is usually reached when two bad arguments merge into one awful position.

"I'm not against it in theory, but the Stalinist purges are more than enough reason, IMHO, to be against it."

By that logic, one should be opposed to christianity because of the KKK, opposed to the olympics because of the munich bombings, opposed to the republicans because of david duke, opposed to the democrats because of al sharpton, opposed to cake because of carrot cake, and opposed to apple pie because of raisins.

"The meridians exist."

They may or may not. So far, no compelling evidence has been presented to show they do.

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KnightEnder
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No problem Johnson. I know how it goes.

Didn't we decide against dog-piling people that don't request it (I know Ken, Rich, and Canadian enjoy it [Smile] ). Bear in mind I have no idea what I'm talking about. [Smile]

KE

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KnightEnder
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Are all these planets assured, for some scientific reason, of having the heavy metals that have made our industries possible? Just asking.

KE

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Lobo
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Hey, leave carrot cake out of your equation... It is one thing to denegrate Sharpton... quite another to badmouth the most divine desert ever created by man or god.
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Everard
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Just shows to show, even the most vile of things has its supporters...
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Lobo
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[Wink]
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MattP
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quote:
Didn't we decide against dog-piling people that don't request it (I know Ken, Rich, and Canadian enjoy it [Smile] ).
Given the title of the thread, I don't think it's unreasonable for any and all skeptics to chime in.
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johnson
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KE--pretty much, AFAIK. They are formed inside large stars, and when the stars go nova or supernova, enough material gets blasted far out enough to form nebulae that eventually form other solar systems.

Ev, the point of the middle ground isn't that it's the best. it's that taking the middle path gives you the best chance of surviving, all other things being equal, YMMV. If you are very lucky, then never mind. the way I see it is, if you are moving toward totalitarianism, you don't belong in power. Stalin and Hitler come to mind. I'm not pounding on Communism. I'd be just as likely to roll my eyes at Rush Limbaugh as you. Extremes don't work.

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Everard
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"the way I see it is, if you are moving toward totalitarianism, you don't belong in power."

I would agree. This is why I have never advocated totalitarianism in any form.

"I'd be just as likely to roll my eyes at Rush Limbaugh as you."

See, rush limbaugh's entire shtic is to apply logical falacies... much like yours is. Your objection to my argument against your position is that I endorse an extreme position. This is yet another logically invalid method of argument, more or less like everything else you've done on this thread.

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johnson
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And we're back to the ad homs.
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TomDavidson
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Things you'll want to demonstrate that you have not demonstrated:

1) That meridians of energy exist. Different levels of conductivity due to different sorts of muscle tissue are not in themselves evidence of this claim.

Things you've cited that are not proof of meridians include:
1) Conductivity
2) The effectiveness of acupuncture
3) The popularity of acupuncture

2) That people are less likely to have discovered the existence of meridians on their own than they are likely to have learned them from extraterrestrials.

To do this, you'll want to demonstrate that:
1) Meridians cannot be observed.
2) The existence of meridians cannot be deduced.
3) Aliens are likely to have contacted us.

Proving #3 is itself a major task.

----------

Once you have done the above, I won't accuse you of logical fallacy.

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seekingprometheus
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quote:
By that logic one should be...opposed to cake because of carrot cake
[LOL]
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Everard
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"And we're back to the ad homs."

You might want to learn what an ad hominem attack is.

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kenmeer livermaile
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Wow. Remember that character we had a few months back? Fella who typoed even worse than me?

yOU KNOW: "EMPTY, VAPID, PERSONAL ATTACKS"... (CAPS oops)

Aliens have contacted me. Stealthy buggers. They disguised themselves as voices in my head.

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johnson
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Tom, who has studied this more? Thou or me? I don't have 6 months to explain things to you, and it would take that long, because there is no short or easy way to do it. Why? Because qi theory has plenty of BS in it...and yet there are Chinese doctors who are very capable at healing. It's like a mostly blind person who is a better archer than most sighted people. I have no logical explanation, but I have a friend who goes to China every year or two for several weeks. He took a walk through the park in Beijing in the morning one day. He says that he could walk around and pick 12-15 people on that morning walk and tour them through the US and make millions, just because of what they can do. There are weird things in this world, and I think it's unbalanced to say otherwise. The fact that the meridians are there is more interesting than what exactly they are, maybe.

I'm going to dig up a link to a German company that offers an acupuncture model that was derived from EMF imaging using a S.Q.U.I.D. Be patient whilst I dig it up.

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TomDavidson
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Your use of the word "studied" dismays me for reasons you probably do not understand.
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Gaoics79
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quote:
Tom, who has studied this more? Thou or me? I don't have 6 months to explain things to you, and it would take that long, because there is no short or easy way to do it. Why? Because qi theory has plenty of BS in it...and yet there are Chinese doctors who are very capable at healing. It's like a mostly blind person who is a better archer than most sighted people. I have no logical explanation, but I have a friend who goes to China every year or two for several weeks. He took a walk through the park in Beijing in the morning one day. He says that he could walk around and pick 12-15 people on that morning walk and tour them through the US and make millions, just because of what they can do. There are weird things in this world, and I think it's unbalanced to say otherwise. The fact that the meridians are there is more interesting than what exactly they are, maybe.

I'm going to dig up a link to a German company that offers an acupuncture model that was derived from EMF imaging using a S.Q.U.I.D. Be patient whilst I dig it up.

Johnson, please, for the love of God, stop. You're hurting my brain [Frown]
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seekingprometheus
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j-

I think you'd probably be surprised at the possibilities that people here will entertain. I think that the resistance you're encountering here is simply because you seem to insist that a possibility should be accepted as necessarily true, but you fail to provide adequate reasons to accept this proposition.

Your claims are rather extraordinary, and the evidence you provide as a warrant for those claims seems quite insufficient for such extraordinary claims.

Now, it seems that you feel you're being mistreated here. I won't say that this thread is devoid of ad hominem attacks, but frankly, the ad hom content aimed at you seems very light considering the ad hom you seem to level at your opposition.

I don't know what you are considering ad hom, but it seems that perhaps you are misunderstanding this concept. For instance--pointing out logical fallacies in your arguments is not ad hom. Not taking your arguments seriously is not ad hom.

Lumping you in with the "crazies" may be ad hom, but in this thread you've leapt from mystical energy flows to aliens abductions to subterranean societies to yogic powers to Atlantis--all of your own accord. Surely you realize that all of these types of ideas tend to be associated with individuals who are considered "crazy" by most educated individuals in modern society?

Whether or not you personally are crazy is rather moot here. But a large proportion of the individuals who insist on the validity of this cluster of ideas you've espoused seem like they would merit some sort of clinical diagnosis regarding their sanity. This is simply to say that, while you may be socially functional, there is a relatively small number of people in society who vocally maintain the validity of the cluster of ideas you've supported, and that of that number, a rather large percentage seems to be highly dysfunctional.

Surely you are aware of this?

If you want to increase your credibility you need to first indicate a greater understanding of why the ideas you espouse are generally viewed with incredulity.

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0Megabyte
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I say I did it. Or should I say, my imaginary italian toaster friend Oregano-Beramicio did it.

He went back in time and told the ancient Chinese about the acupuncture points, and claimed, just out of ****s and giggles, that it was due to meridians in the body.

----

Honestly, why is your reason, that aliens came, any more reasonable than mine?

After all, I have first hand evidence of my friend Oregano, and I in fact went on several of those trips.

How can you beat eyewitness reports?

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johnson
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Eh, whatever.
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Adam Lassek
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quote:
Tom, who has studied this more? Thou or me? I don't have 6 months to explain things to you, and it would take that long, because there is no short or easy way to do it
Now you've committed "Argument from Authority." You're just digging deeper, johnson. I would also like to point out that accusing someone of a logical fallacy cannot by definition be ad hominem.

What can I say. You just have way too much credulity for your own good. I don't even have the time to wade back into this right now, but I shall return tomorrow.

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johnson
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yeah, I do commit logical fallacies. That's a given with me. However, there are areas I know a lot about, and areas I know not so much about. Logic doesn't give you experience. I guarantee you none of you knows 1/100 of what I have studied in these areas.


I'll be calling the company tomorrow. The company is www.3bscientific.com, and I'm fairly sure their acupuncture model number, # N20, of the whole body, was derived using a S.Q.U.I.D.

I'm not sure what I'm being asked to prove at this point, though. The existence of qi/prana/ki?

Is anyone assuming that I make some kind of formal belief system out of all this? Nothing could be further from the truth. I've been there, done that, bought the t-shirt, and come back a little embarrassed but wiser.

[ March 09, 2007, 01:26 AM: Message edited by: johnson ]

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seekingprometheus
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johnson-

I think you're misunderstanding the value of logic.

You seem to imply that logic is an area you don't know much about, but that you do know a lot in other areas.

But logic applies to all areas of knowledge. Logic is the framework of any area of knowledge. Logic is about how things fit together.

Commiting a logical fallacy is about thinking something means something that it actually doesn't mean.

It doesn't matter how much you know about a given subject if you're drawing conclusions that can't logically be drawn from what you know.

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0Megabyte
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"eh, whatever."

Precisely.

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