SBJ Does it Again (logic lesson: please read)

I did not post this to “pick on” James McPherson.  I posted it to make a point about people who attack other people instead of address their argument.  This is called the fallacy of ad hominem and it is a very common in our society today – especially in journalism and education.  Both of these “professions” should be concerned with avoiding this fallacy, but, today, they make their living on it.  I have used SBJ as an example because he is both a “journalist” and a “professor,” which makes him the perfect example – especially since he provides such clear and easily explained examples of how this works.

James McPherson is lying to himself again.  I know this is old and it seems childish, but it isn’t.  This man touts himself as a “Dr of journalism” and he teaches college students.  So this post goes to his credibility.

In the comment thread after my post, SBJ Tries to Claim High Ground by Lying to RNL, I read this comment from James (SBJ):

James McPherson

July 5, 2013 at 07:39  

 “what pseudonyms have to do with the topic of discussion”

It simply goes to credibility. The less I know about someone, the less I tend to trust their motives, biases or courage of their convictions. Perhaps you’re willing to trust anyone who comes along, as long as they seem to agree with you.

So, I replied with this:

Joe_Bakanovic

July 5, 2013 at 10:05

Not to mention that it is TOTALLY fallacious to claim that the validity of a statement or an argument depends on the source. I guess nothing Mark Twain ever wrote has any credibility, huh?

And here is where James tries to tell the RNL that he either doesn’t understand the English language, or – most likely – that he thinks we are all so stupid that he can blatantly lie to us and we’ll believe him.  His reply to my comment was:

James McPherson

July 5, 2013 at 10:51

“it is TOTALLY fallacious to claim that the validity of a statement or an argument depends on the source”

A claim I didn’t make, of course, so what’s your point? My argument had to do with the courage (or lack thereof) of the writer, and whether we should trust them or not. For example, I sometimes suspect that Augger is actually a liberal, hanging out here and making inane insults but contributing almost nothing to a conversation just to make conservatives looks stupid.

And frankly — not that you care — I have more respect for you now that you use your name than I did back when you were posting under a pseudonym. But I do find it tellingly appropriate that you choose to identify with a fiction writer in your argument for credibility.

OK, so he didn’t make the claim that not knowing who an author is shouldn’t discredit what they have to say???  So why did he double down and then make the claim right after denying it?  Because, that is what this is – an assertion that anonymity discredits the validity of what is being said:

1st time: It simply goes to credibility. The less I know about someone, the less I tend to trust their motives, biases or courage of their convictions.

2nd time: My argument had to do with the courage (or lack thereof) of the writer, and whether we should trust them or not.

Both times, SBJ is clearly indicating that he believes he can dismiss an argument based on who makes it and/or why they make it.  This is a fallacious assertion.  In this case, the fallacy is called “against the person” or, as those who follow my posts will know, ad hominem.

Your reasoning contains this fallacy if you make an irrelevant attack on the arguer and suggest that this attack undermines the argument itself.

Example:

What she says about Johannes Kepler’s astronomy of the 1600′s must be just so much garbage. Do you realize she’s only fifteen years old?

(Complicated fallacy: please read the rest.)

In short, credibility doesn’t have anything to do with the validity of an argument.  Neither does motive.  Those issues apply to the credibility of things such as testimony, where people report what they claim to have seen.  Testimony is not the same thing as an argument.  When it comes to determining whether or not an argument is sound, rational and valid, an argument ALWAYS stands alone.  It does not depend on who made it or why.  This is why SBJ never goes after the argument but attacks the author – because he doesn’t know how to attack an argument – because he doesn’t know anything about reason.

BTW: This provides us with an excellent example of where credibility does apply.  If SBJ demonstrates he has little to no understanding of logic and sound reasoning, then he has provided his readers with sufficient cause to doubt his ability to draw sound conclusions.  And, if a person cannot draw sound conclusions, then we have just cause to doubt their ability as either a journalist or a professor, as both are supposed to be based on sound reasoning.  See the difference?  James has demonstrated he does not.

On a final note, the example I sued that James thinks is ironic was not just a “fiction writer,” he was a political satirist.  James knows this, so, not telling the reader this and acting as though Mark Twain was just a fiction writer is another fallacy.  In truth, most everything James posts on this forum (and his own blog) is riddled with fallacious reasoning/argument.  And we wonder why our college kids are falling behind the rest of the world, or why our people are so ill informed.  Maybe it’s because the rest of the world’s teachers and journalists pay more attention to logic and sound reasoning where ours insist on trying to create a reality from lollipop and unicorn dreams (or, in SBJ’s case, our own arrogance).

45 thoughts on “SBJ Does it Again (logic lesson: please read)

  1. “I sometimes suspect that Augger is actually a liberal, hanging out here and making inane insults but contributing almost nothing to a conversation just to make conservatives looks stupid.”

    What is ironic, and also humorous is that if you look back through James’s posts, “making inane insults but contributing almost nothing to a conversation” adds up to the vast majority of his posts here.

    Diversion. James is just another political hack, and as not to offend Mr. Gates as it upsets him that I pick on James, I’ll quantify that statement further. He (McPherson) treats politics as completely abstract – and that provides him with license to say anything he wants, regardless of its reasonableness.

    Overt hypocrisy. Nothing more, nothing less.

    • “and as not to offend Mr. Gates as it upsets him that I pick on James”

      If I’m in the wrong, then do whatever you feel offends me and it’s up to me to get over that. If not, then the response is legit. There’s nothing that you could say on this blog that would upset me. It’s not that serious to me.

      • It’s not about being wrong … it was about quantification of the statement.

        “There’s nothing that you could say on this blog that would upset me. It’s not that serious to me.”

        There you go Gates! Now your thinking. 🙂

        • “There you go Gates! Now your thinking.”

          Now that we disagree on. I’m always thinking. Maybe just not what some would want me to think.

  2. “SBJ does it again.”

    Yep — I again got Puppet Joey, who just a couple of days ago was threatening to ignore me — to feature me in another post. That makes what, nine times, by three different RNL authors? Admittedly, at least five of those came from Joe, who I’m beginning to suspect has a thing for me, but I’m somewhat honored, kids. Keep that up and I might become a regular reader again. 😉

    “he is both a ‘journalist’ and a ‘professor'”

    Well, you’re half right –closer than you were on that post you’re harping about, when you referred to me as a literature professor. I’d address more of your post, Joe, but frankly it was so tedious that I started to doze off. I’ve better things to do and can’t imagine that anyone else bothered to read that far, anyway.

    Now you and your gutless anonymous minions can rail on for a while as I go about enjoying what’s shaping up as a glorious day in the Pacific Northwest. But thanks again for “ignoring” me. 😉

  3. Joe and Augger,

    Continued attention to St James the “Humble” only serves to elevate him far beyond what his Narcissism deserves…..and definitely beyond the Substantive content of his Comments. There are rumours of his being a literature “professor”……… however, even a cursive glance at his specious analysis of RNLs Posts and Current Politics tells one he is an intellectual light-weight. Literature-wise he is more like one of Robe-Grillets flys walking on the wall…….full of repetive criticism and indefinite narrative ….leading nowhere. Full of sound and fury signifying nothing would be another accurate description of his critiques. As a musical analogy, although he portrays himself and likely thinks of himself as a Bach……he is closer to a Sorabji…… his words describing 100 differnt main streets leading nowhere.

    He truely is “Less than Zero”……… And should be treated as such.

    • Don,

      I understand. I even agree. But I am not going to let such a clear and easily understood teaching moment go by just because it “elevates” SBJ to use him as an example. If he takes pride in being demonstrably proven to be everything he claims to be against, then — IMHO — that only further exposes his pathology. Don’t you think? 🙂

    • “Continued attention to St James the “Humble” only serves to elevate him far beyond what his Narcissism deserves”

      Don, you certainly got the narcissistic component nailed (which is the source of the “weight jokes”). But I am going to toss in a variable that you and Mr. Gates has not considered …

      I actually continue to enjoy sparring with McPherson. I work in a world where everything is very serious business, and this little blog site gives me an opportunity to toss the stethoscope aside, and enjoy the humor of the insanity. Sadly though, I have tried out the other crazy liberals to post here, but none are quite as intellectual as McPherson, and wash out pretty quickly.

      So as much as I hate to say it, I wish he’d really offer more stiff resistance, but in the end, I suppose he cannot … given the current stump of liberal politics.

      Guess I could go buy a console game. 🙂

      • Well Augger … I hear you wrt St James being “entertainment”……as in Harvey Fierstein’s comment from *Torchsong Trilogy*….”I were the entertainment..”.

        However in keeping with the Literature meme Jimmah likes to gesture towards…….SBJ Intellectual..??
        Again to paraphrase..”Frailty thy name is women”……….. I would say instead.. :…”..Inane, they name is St James “.

    • “There are rumours of his being a literature ‘professor'”……

      Any such “rumours” were generated by comprehension-challenged RNL folks, Donnie. I’ve never made such a claim. Thanks for helping the boys “ignore” me, though. If you ask, they might even let you do a guest post in my honor, as three of them have. 😉

  4. SBJ is or claims to be a professor of Journalism. But I say if the current crop of journalists are a result of teaching by SBJ and others of his ilk, it’s no wonder our major media outlets are so screwed up.

    I reckon we could call it the GIGO factor, IYKWIM. 😉

  5. Correction: I suppose that among other professions, Samuel Clemens was also a journalist realy doesn’t matter?

    • Today we wouldn’t today call what Twain was doing “journalism” — more like letters chronicling his travels. And at that time, bylines were rare, anyway.

      But are you suggesting that anyone (including yourself) at the RNL is either a journalist or using a pseudonym for any reason other that fear of having their/your identity revealed? If so, I’d be much more interested in your reasoning than in speculation about a 19th-century writer.

      • My use of a pseudonym in my postings is the result of what has happened in the past. I started out using my real name years ago, but could not get past all of the flaming that some anal retentives would then hit me with in an effort to silence my point of view. And besides, when the members of Anonymous, Wiki leaks and every other group that hides their identities on the web ends their masquerades, then I will do likewise.
        I may be wrong, but I would imagine that you hail all of them as heroes. I am not impressed with anyone that has a college degree in journalism. They enter the school with the highest of ideals about what they can do to improve the world, and what are they actually supposed to do in the real world? Why I thought it was to cover the five W’s. Instead, they now seek to be the news or to editorialize every event to couch it or mold it to conform to some agenda. And I make this charge against all reporters, not just progressives or liberals.
        I want a reporter to do a Joe Friday, “just the facts ma’am”. And let the editorial chips fall where they may.
        What I would like to hear from you is why you believe someone should go to college to learn how to be a journalist. In other words, can you justify your job as a professor of journalism by telling me what a student would learn from you that makes journalism more than the 5 W’s?
        Anyone with a high school education can write and report the facts. If they make mistakes, that is what an experienced editor is for. Beyond that, every news organization employs or retains attorneys for legal protections, so what is the deep, dark secret that they learn from you?

        • “could not get past all of the flaming that some anal retentives would then hit me with in an effort to silence my point of view”

          Having been featured in nine separate posts here at the RNL, I understand. On other sites, within a one-year period, I had people write that I should be shot, hanged, stabbed, raped and beaten. I’ve had folks call and write the president and human resources folks at my university demanding that I be fired. My wife isn’t thrilled that I have a blog of my own, let alone that I comment on other blogs where I know people will disagree with me.

          And all of that helps demonstrate my point. Those who use pseudonyms generally do so out of fear of what might happen to them — and I have greater respect for those who are willing to stand the potential heat by backing up their words with their names. And of course many use pseudonyms BECAUSE it lets them flame away, saying things they know are idiotic or profane.

          “when the members of Anonymous, Wiki leaks and every other group that hides their identities on the web ends their masquerades, then I will do likewise”

          So you’re a follower, huh? They’re maintaining their anonymity out of fear or cowardice, as well. Some of the fears may be justified, so I understand the motives in that case. But on blogs (as with those who threatened me back in the days I was a reporter), the vast majority of those who threaten (esp. anonymously) are the biggest cowards of all.

          “I may be wrong, but I would imagine that you hail all of them as heroes.”

          There may be no human alive that I hail as a hero. Some are better than others. All are flawed. And I understand your concerns about journalism; I’ve written at length about the same issues in a couple books, a blog and elsewhere. You ask some excellent questions, so I’ll try to answer them. You can also see more about me at http://jmcpherson.wordpress.com/about/

          “In other words, can you justify your job as a professor of journalism by telling me what a student would learn from you that makes journalism more than the 5 W’s?”

          One problem, of course, is that the “W’s” aren’t so simple (particularly when you get to the “why”). Let’s take one example popular here, Obamacare. How should that have been covered? Shouldn’t we get the perspectives of politicians on both sides (as we did), but also well-informed perspectives of patients, potential patients, doctors, local and state agencies, etc. And what when they say conflicting things? Should we just leave it there, letting people decide whom they trust more (the one with the “R” or “D” behind their name) or should be actually try to find out the real and potential effects?

          “Anyone with a high school education can write and report the facts.”

          Probably not “anyone,” but I agree with what I perceive to be your point. Lots of people can write clearly and coherently. There’s nothing particularly tricky about journalism, assuming someone know what to report and how to get access to the material.

          “If they make mistakes, that is what an experienced editor is for.”

          So where do those editors come from? Besides, we all make mistakes, and how is even an experienced editor to know if every reporter in every section talked to the appropriate sources?

          “Beyond that, every news organization employs or retains attorneys for legal protections…”

          Perhaps not to the degree you’d expect. And those attorneys almost never see anything in advance — if everything had to be run past an attorney before it appeared in print, it would take forever to get out even one day’s newspaper.

          “so what is the deep, dark secret that they learn from you?”

          No deep, dark secrets. Many of the best reporters working today don’t have journalism degrees. And frankly, I tell my students that today they could get an excellent liberal arts education and learn most of the skills taught in colleges and universities online for free. The college experience itself (regardless of major) is one that most students and alumns (and their parents and employers) find valuable, but that’s a broader discussion and I’ll stick to my own discipline.

          Students tell me that my reporting class is the toughest one they take, in large part because of the number of sources I require for stories and because of the time and effort involved in deciphering and reporting on public records (real estate records, tax records, budgets, etc.). Other things we teach future reporters in that class and others include techniques for developing and improving skills in writing, observation, interviewing, finding and developing sources, photography/broadcast/video (today’s reporters are expected to “do it all”) and social media.

          Though schools vary in their requirements, at mine we also require students to take a semester of media law and a semester of media history (through which we hope they’ll learn some of the highlights and low points of journalism’s past). And the “capstone” class for all of our majors is a media ethics class, which we hope they’ll apply to the things learned in other classes as they go out into the world. Finally, we also require students to complete at least one for-credit internship.

          I hope I’ve answered your questions; if not, please feel free to follow up here, on my blog, or via email. Thanks for the opportunity.

          • “Those who use pseudonyms generally do so out of fear of what might happen to them”

            Of course James, the use of pseudonyms couldn’t possibly have anything to do with the tactics of your liberal peers who love to send SWAT teams to conservative blogger’s homes, could it? Oh lord heavens no, we are not targeted that way; not in the least. Nor are we targeted at our workplaces either (that only happens to Professors at Christian colleges).

            You’ll have to excuse us on this one, McPherson. Some of us do not feed off the same types of drama you apparently enjoy …

            “Frey was cuffed by police while they woke up his wife, who was asleep in their room, and questioned her about the safety of the children. Helicopters swarmed overhead with searchlights as the sheriff’s deputies investigated.”

            When you find away to control your side of the fence’s Gestapo tactics, then we’ll revisit the use of real identities on oppositional blog sites.

            • “Nor are we targeted at our workplaces either (that only happens to Professors at Christian colleges).”

              That’s simply a stupid comment, Augger. I never said anything of the sort. But you have managed to further demonstrate my point, for which I thank you. You counter my comment about fear by responding with … well, fear.

              I said in my comment that some fears may be justified, and I also noted that I’d been threatened. There are “Gestapo tactics” and lunatics on both sides, and I have no “control” over either. I just choose not to live in fear of them, or to fully trust those who say their anonymity is based on such fears. You obviously have made a different choice.

              • It’s only a “stupid comment” James because you know that I just pointed out your myopic comment. We are both smart enough to know that both sides are targeted, yet one of us is only willing to state it until called out by another. And that is something you should consider prior to reading us your resume to make your point. After all, you are a journalist, and should be quite aware of how to avoid bias, or the perception of …

                Sorry if that was painful, but I sure did enjoy getting your mane to stand up. 🙂

                As for me, you better bet that I have been called to the CEO’s office to discuss my public opinions, but such is the case with Social Media. So no James, it’s not a question of fear. It’s more of a question of silliness meant to waste another’s time … just as you have endured at your workplace.

                So we have come to a standoff on motivation, and that’s fine. Using your real name (if it really is you, and your not a poser) does not change my trust in you, nor should it. Just because you post a “real name”, does not mean I can substantiate it any easier than one made up. I just choose to be honest enough to use a pseudonym instead of calling myself “Joe Biden” or whatever other fictitious name I could choose.

                Personally, I do not lose any sleep or a moments peace if you mistrust me because of that. I would however be fairly put out if you generated the scene at my home illustrated in the photograph above.

                We’ll just have to trust that despite our political wrestling, we are both above that. 🙂

                • Augger,

                  As a “journalist,” the only thing he has been “trained” to do is reflexively disagree with and attack “conservatives” and to unquestioningly repeat as gospel truth anything he finds on a Left-wing blog.

                  • And remember the Censorship Joe that is the hallmark of the Liberal Blogs !!!

                    See what happens at the Huff Po and all the rest !!!

                • “After all, you are a journalist”

                  No, I’m not — as I’ve pointed out here repeatedly. I know you and Joe have a little trouble differentiating between distant past and present, but you (and he) really should have got this by now.

                  “I sure did enjoy getting your mane to stand up”

                  Sorry, Augger, but I don’t care enough about the opinion of anyone on a blog — let alone an anonymous commenter who deals primarily in personal insults — to get that worked up about anything you have to offer.

                  I am enjoying Puppet Joey’s failing efforts to “ignore” me, though, as he continues to sputter inane lies (such as his claim about me repeating what I find on left-wing blogs, which I find to be nearly as ludicrously stupid as the RNL and other right-wing sites).

                  • “No, I’m not”

                    After all the money either you, or I spent on your education (a PHD in Journalism if my memory serves me well), I certainly hope you have not become a conscientious objector to your chosen profession. 🙂

                    You certainly “care enough” to follow every digital breath of ole’ Dusty (and better him than I) to the point one would have to question your obsession with him.

                    Other than the above, I suppose we’ve found common ground to the real heart of your issue with internet handles, or at least enough of a common ground that you elected not to contest the point further.

                    So here’s a Scotch for you, and my well wishes for the Dr of Journalism who does not want to be called a journalist. Given the state of your chosen profession, I cannot honestly state that I would not feel the same if I were in your shoes. 🙂

                    • “not become a conscientious objector to your chosen profession”

                      Sorry, Augger, I’m not sure what you mean here. I got a bachelor’s degree in journalism (paid for through work in a sawmill and on farms, and with scholarships, back in the days when a young man could make enough money to pay his way through a state school), and then became a journalist. After about a decade I gave it up and eventually went back to school to get the Ph.D. If a career shift and a desire to improve my former field makes me a “conscientious objector,” then I guess I am one.

                      As far a “following” Dusty, that’s just because he’s the one who keeps posting the inane stuff that has been circulating on right-wing blogs and chats, sometimes for years. I’d think those who care more about the RNL than I do would be questioning his actions even more than I do — and the fact that we’ve gone from Utah criticizing it (and even suspending Dusty’s privileges) to Joe defending it (because in some vague way the central message is true, even if the facts are wrong), typifies the unfortunate decline of the RNL.

                      Besides, speaking of “obsession,” I’m pretty sure that the number of Dusty’s posts that I’ve ridiculed (and all in the comments section) is lower than the number of headlined posts the folks of the RNL have written about me. So perhaps you should worry at least as much about Joe’s psyche as about mine.

                      And thanks for the virtual Scotch. In return I’ll refrain from questioning whether you should be held accountable for the problems in the medical profession. 🙂

          • My only comment is to yours about being a follower. In this one pratice, you may call it what you will. I am not in a postion where I can be that up front. But thank you for your responses I have found them interesting. I still believe that a reporter should just report the facts and if they want to express their opinion, that is what the editorial page or opinion segment is for.

            • “a reporter should just report the facts and if they want to express their opinion, that is what the editorial page or opinion segment is for”

              On that we agree. Thanks again.

        • Old Vet,

          The use of Psuedonyms is a Very long, tried and True mechanism for communication. It is also an expressive act.

          The issue is very simple…………..It is your choice or not…end of story. Any commentary or questioning of your choice and presentation is an act of Personal attack and deflection from the Body of your commentary. Any deflection thus leveled at you ( or anyone) should be met with…”So what”…..and continue with your substantive work., leaving the questioner in the Sand-box to play with childish things.

  6. Joe’s theory of natural law is not based in reality. Instead it is based in his personal morals. Morals are personal and subjective. It is funny that Joe’s tries to equate animal behavior to natural law, as if there is not an enormous variety of behavior between individual animals and between species.

    Natural law is a myth, since the nature it is based in has no solid basis.

    Joe also denies the existence of society and the collective. He cannot see beyond the world view created by idealist philosophers who believe man’s natural state is being alone on an island with no limits, i.e “freedom” and that somehow this is to be emulated in society. That this freedom is the highest goal in society, even though all it creates is a vicious predatorial system where men are cutting off each others legs to stay on “top.” Top is in quotes because no upward progress is being made. In a collectivist democratic society humans would use their abilities to create a better world for all, do away with wasting energy in keeping on “top” and actually make true progress in living standards by recognizing their needs and problems and dealing with them. Rather than somehow rely on a system of private accumulation, where the main goal is to be on “top” rather than solve issues. Sure a capitalist can be paid to solve issues and grow food, but sometimes capitalist can make more money by doing the harmful thing and exacerbating problems rather than solving them

    • From the tower of Babel to the Soviet Union, history has proven the fallacy and failure of “the collective”. Many people feel a need or compulsion to retreat to the concept of the “natural law” to justify the founding of our republic. This is no longer necessary. We know that a government that protects the rights of all, at the demand of the governed, works well and serves us all. As demonstrated by my first statement, any “collective” or other form of tyranny is regressive and ultimately, destructive to serf and master alike. Just ask the Czars of Russia, and any other emperors of the past. Our duty as Americans, is to preserve the constitution, and our institutions as they were intended by the founders in the 18th century to ensure that the nation survives, prospers, and remains the haven for all of the square pegs around the world being forced into round holes.

      • You neglect to mention, the economic crisis that come along with private property. The inability of private property exchanges to provide a democratic power system for the have nots. Anyways my post was not a criticism of capitalism but a criticism of the weak ideology of the idealist.

        • Karl,

          The advent of private property is what permitted the thing you call a crisis in the first place. Before private property, we had what you want again — universal poverty save for the ruling elite.

          BTW: I see that some educated — REALLY educated readers have been soundly whipping your irrational rear end. Does my heart good to see that happen 🙂

          • admitting crisis is a condition of capitalism is “whipping my rear end?” You still have not directly replied to my criticism of natural law, please do so in a post and not a comment so a good discussion can be had.

            • Crisis is a condition of the collective — NOT capitalism. So, yes, it is whipping your arse.

              You see, the whole notion of a crisis is a tool of the Left/collectivist. You guys use it to justify your control. In all of history, all your control has ever done is forestall and camouflage what those who embrace the free market see as business cycles. They are as natural as anything else in life, only — like everything else in life — you control freaks think things should fit your dreams, so you look to control that which is beyond your control.

              In the end, everyone who thinks like you are really people of small minds, great fear and — far too often — colossal and undeserved egos. Nothing more.

            • Karl, I would not mind discourse with your assertions. I would however enjoy doing it in a topic of that purpose.

              If you are having trouble with following along, I have no issues with helping to pay for some tutoring with McPherson.

        • 3 thumbs up; 7 thumbs down

          I predicted a while back that you would be history on this site. I made that comment after what appeared to me as an exhaustive defense of socialism. IMO,recognizing, and debating the weaknesses of any system and focusing on solutions to problems should be our way forward.

            • 3 up; 9 down 🙂

              When you debate here, not only must you be prepared to put in a fair amount of time, you must also be comfortable with the fact that the last word means absolutely nothing.

              • It’s not that “the Last Word means absolutely nothing”….

                But rather most who read your comment feel YOUR words mean absolutely nothing………

            • How did this comment get 1 thumb up and 1 thumb down? Maybe I’m not getting how the rating system works.

              I would not attempt to fix socialism. I would rather we attempted to honestly address the shortcomings with our current form of capitalism.

        • Personally, I have no use for any “democratic” system. A democracy is a KKK meeting deciding who gets lynched tonight. As far as a power system in government is concerned, the poor have helped to install the current crop of progressives in office and every bunch since 1926 so we have a hundred years of abysmal failure to show for it. Another fallacy you purport is that capitalism perpetuates poverty. Sir, I have been countries that do not practice capitalism. I have been a poor American and was grateful to be one. It amazes me how anyone can support failed totalitarianism ideologies like those of the last 2 centuries in light of historical reality. I think by have not’s you are referring to voting rights. My vote is my responsibility, just like getting myself to work every day. Now, once I get there and I am denied entry to vote, then we have a problem. I won’t bore everyone with walking to vote stories, and I am sure we all have them. But my vote is my responsibility, and if I choose not participate, that’s my loss, not your political platform.

  7. Now Karl, please. Come on. COME ON.

    How the hell is your criticism of capitalism relevant to SBJ’s criminal use of ad hominem and registered sex offender-like obsession with pseudonyms?

    This is from the “logical fallacies” link on Joe’s blog, The Road to Concord, just in case anybody need a quick refresher on the ad hominem fallacy:

    “Your reasoning contains this fallacy if you make an irrelevant attack on the arguer and suggest that this attack undermines the argument itself.

    Example:

    ‘What she says about Johannes Kepler’s astronomy of the 1600′s must be just so much garbage. Do you realize she’s only fifteen years old?’

    This attack may undermine the arguer’s credibility as a scientific authority, but it does not undermine her reasoning itself because her age is irrelevant to quality of the reasoning. That reasoning should stand or fall on the scientific evidence, not on the arguer’s age or anything else about her personally. Reasoning that has the ad hominem form is not always fallacious, if the form is: “The reasoner said X, but the reasoner has unacceptable trait T, so X is not acceptable.” The major difficulty with labeling a piece of reasoning of this form as an ad hominem fallacy is deciding whether the personal attack is relevant or irrelevant. For example, attacks on a person for their actually immoral sexual conduct are irrelevant to the quality of their mathematical reasoning, but they are relevant to arguments promoting the person for a leadership position in a church.

    If the fallacious reasoner points out irrelevant circumstances that the reasoner is in, such as the arguer’s having a vested interesting in people accepting the position, then the ad hominem fallacy may be called a Circumstantial Ad Hominem. If the fallacious attack is on the arguer’s associates, or ability or background or personal character it may be called an Abusive Ad Hominem, although the attack on the arguer’s associates is more commonly called Guilt by Association. If the fallacy is due to the origin of the arguer’s views it is a kind of Genetic Fallacy. If the fallacy is due to claiming the person does not practice what is preached, it is the Tu Quoque Fallacy. Two Wrongs Make a Right is also another type of ad hominem fallacy.”

Talk Amongst Yourselves:

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