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My Own Personal Argument Clinic

Maybe I'm the only one who sees the humor in it....
I talk about the ego of man -- thinking he knows all there is to know at any point in history.

And Steve apparently tries to convince me he does know it all because he can do math.

If his response to my post does not define the ego of man then nothing does. It's like a bad incarnation of that old Monty Python skit.

Me: Hey Steve, don't you think its a tad arrogant to believe that you have all the facts about the origins of life and everyone else is wrong.

Steve: I'm not arrogant. You are just a dumbass who doesn't know shit. If you knew what the hell you were talking about you could do as much math as me. I can do math therefore I am right and you are a heap of dung. See, I'm not arrogant, I just know more than anyone else.

Me: Oh.

Comments (23)

- Impeccable logic - heh</p... (Below threshold)

- Impeccable logic - heh

Is Steve the super-genius w... (Below threshold)
D. Carter:

Is Steve the super-genius who's advising Soros on his blog investments?

It is too bad you have to l... (Below threshold)

It is too bad you have to lie about my post.

I won't comment on Steve's ... (Below threshold)
Richard Young:

I won't comment on Steve's math. However, his grammar isn't very good.

- As a disinterested third ... (Below threshold)

- As a disinterested third party Steve I don't see why you feel slighted. Pauls main beginning point is he respected the way you state your opinions and stand by them.....Seems like you're going against that in this case.....

Big Bang Hunter,My... (Below threshold)

Big Bang Hunter,

My problem is that first the problem was that I didn't think that all theories should be treated equal. Then when commenters nailed Paul on that (see Ian Hamet's Zorkon the Space God comment) Paul moved the goal posts to the validity of Evolution vs. ID. Now, it is that I think I know everything since I know somethings about Bayesian inference and how it applies to making decisions about hypotheses and theories. It is a series of dishonest responses.

D. Carter,

Yes, Soros and I are buds. We vacation together and everything. Sheesh.

speaking of dishonest respo... (Below threshold)

speaking of dishonest responses...

You completely mischaracterized what happened in your first two points. My point (for I dunno, about he 15th time) was never about one theory vs another. LOOK AT THE TITLE "The Ego of Man" clearly it was a discussion about man's ego in thinking he had all the answers. (you might notice I used the word "generations" a few times too.)

And the last one was just to mock you. When questioned about ones humility, calling names and attempting to flaunt your supposed academic prowess is not going to win you any converts. KnowhatImean?

and BTW Steve, since you ha... (Below threshold)

and BTW Steve, since you haven't figured it out....

Your problem is that I'm talking about philosophy and you keep wanting to talk biology. (and statistics) You're in the wrong discipline,


- Steve....I don't wish to ... (Below threshold)

- Steve....I don't wish to appear as taking one side or the other in this, but I have to say I think Paul was pretty clear about the focus of his critque in your post..... namely that its a slippery slope when ever we take an absolutist postion on issues, be they theories, beliefs, or any other intellectual exercise. Your ending statement sounded clearly as if you were advocating a curtailment of freedom of investigation of the nature and contentions of competing theories....

- As to the moving of goal posts I think Paul clearly tried to keep the "origion of the species" genie in the box, but its almost impossible with any subject that even grazes the far edge of that topic since its such a hot button.....

- But thats just my opinion....I could be wrong.....

- BTW Paul.... take any sub... (Below threshold)

- BTW Paul.... take any subject you'd like....don't care...anything that you feel expert and competent in.....debate, discuss, ruminate, impart and exchange every aspect of the sum knowledge and experience with as many of your peers as you like who are simarlarly versed.... When you're done....have exhausted the subject in terms of known testable criteria what are you left with....beliefs.. the other name for beliefs...."Personal Philosophy"....

- Which is a complicated way of saying in the final analysis I don't believe you can ever entirely seperate theory/science and faith/philosophy, nor is that a simple tutorial statement. I think its the root to why we have such a difficult time discussing certain subjects sometimes....

I think we all have our bel... (Below threshold)

I think we all have our beliefs about our origins and Steve may just be right, at least as far as his origins are concerned. He doesn't seem too far removed from swinging in trees to me. Two generations at most. Soon he'll making and using simple tools.

The wrath of God is being r... (Below threshold)
Apostle Paul:

The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse...

so what is the gain in teac... (Below threshold)
tee bee:

so what is the gain in teaching only evolution as origin (or any theories of origin for that matter) to a bunch of kids who won't remember their algebra a year later, let alone the monkey charts? if they are that inept - and the Steve-types make everyone around them feel like they are that ignorant and inept - what do you think you will accomplish? either they agree blindly or disagree blindly, for whatever reason. so why the hell-bent energy spent on this, especially when it is one or two districts that even want to think about it? you surely aren't sparking anyone's interest in inquiry here.

funny, now that I think of it, if I told you what I think about the whole thing I can expect that you would scoff at my puny knowledge. the only difference would be that if I agreed with you, you'd pat my head and not get your undies in a bundle. which is still condescension not earned or merited, and advances nothing in science or society.

The upshot of all this appe... (Below threshold)
Paul Zrimsek:

The upshot of all this appears to be that children should not be taught anything about anything. Can't have all those arrogant teachers claiming to know all the answers!

Or how about teach both, li... (Below threshold)
Sue Dohnim:

Or how about teach both, like they did when I was in high school?

tee bee's got a point, though. The most popular biological laboratory in my day was the backseat of my friend's Camaro.

- Sue - You have such a pro... (Below threshold)

- Sue - You have such a prolific way og getting straight to the "heart" of the matter....Lets Partaaay

BBH, you smooth-talker you.... (Below threshold)
Sue Dohnim:

BBH, you smooth-talker you. Wait right there, I'll get the husband and two kids into the minivan and we'll be right over... ;)

- Go ahead - rain on my par... (Below threshold)

- Go ahead - rain on my parade....(got any room to take a godzillateen off my hands for a few hours.....).... >;}o

What an asshat, Paul.... (Below threshold)

What an asshat, Paul.


great response, Paul Z:... (Below threshold)
tee bee:

great response, Paul Z:

we have to pretend to have all the answers, or we can't call ourselves teachers, so we pick the solution the loudest people like best and stick with it through hell and high water. and that is not faith but science, and inspires inquiry somehow, and advances both science and society in some unnamed way. that will probably work, since you've trained students to just take your word for things anyway.

or maybe you want to actually answer my question about what is gained in teaching any origin theory, let alone one specific theory.

tee bee wrote:o... (Below threshold)

tee bee wrote:

or maybe you want to actually answer my question about what is gained in teaching any origin theory, let alone one specific theory.

everyone has origin stories, not just christians. and their version has borrowed elements from other cultures, like many do. origin stories provide an explanation for a culture's beginning, and can provide insiight into particular worldviews.

people all over the world have taught origin stories for thousands of years. the benefit has been the continuation of traditions, cohesion, and identity.

i find this creation/evolution debate interesting and funny. i dont understand why creationists feel any need to have their views broadcast in science classrooms of all places...i understand that certain scientific ideas challenge literal time interpretations of biblical events, and challenge notions of the age of the earth, etc. but what i dont understand is why creationists feel threatened by that...i mean isnt the most important idea of christianity the message of christ...why does it matter to them how old the earth is, or what mechanics were at work in the formation of biological diversity?

creationists are always talking about being against evolution, but if they are strict supporters of a 5,600 year old earth they are also in direct conflict with geologists, paleontologists, and archaeologists, among others.

also...creationists arent fighting to advocate the idea of creation myths, they are fighting for the acceptance of THEIR creation story. they should look into mesopotamian myths, one source that they borrowed elements from, a source that predates the early hebrews.

nobody has the ONE correct answer. i sure dont. there are many answers, IMO.

 For although they knew God... (Below threshold)
Apostle Paul:

 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.

dear apostle paul,... (Below threshold)

dear apostle paul,

are you upset? is there something you want to talk about?







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