Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Another Facebook debate

A friend of mine added me to this atheist group in FB, it was fun looking at the posts and the few discussions I had were quite good.  But yesterday somebody posted a video link that lead to this post.  A few people from the group reacted to my post and lead to some back and forth,  I quite enjoyed it,  I felt I fully debunked the video.  But the thread was deleted,  I don't know why, I asked who deleted it and why and got no satisfactory answer, so in the tradition of my other FB encounter where the other side deleted his comments, to mask the fact that his arguments were poor.  I will again post the thread here,  no names will be mentioned to protect whatever.

So the thread started when somebody posted this video. I will not embed the video here because I think it's a poorly argued video, go to youtube if you really want to see it.  I watched it and wrote my reaction, which I reproduced in the previously mentioned post.

The poster of the video, then posted a link to another video by the same guys.  I told him that the video he linked to did not refute or answer the points I raised. 

He answered "my friend i'm not here to answer questions i'm here just an idea :)"  and "you have the answer my friend :)"

Which was stupid,  if he was not ready to defend a video he shared to the group, why did he share it?  So I answered "And I am just pointing out that the ideas you are sharing are bullshit"

Which got this response "Ok my friend :) Just be a good person to your self :)"

I would like to reiterate that this group is an atheist and agnostic group,  presumably, the members had reasoned themselves out of the religion that has been inculcated in them by Philippine society.  And this guy was here, promoting this video, that he labels must see, and does not even have the guts to defend it. 

Some members then chimed, some idiot commented "Roy C. Choco I accept your opinion about the link shared by ___________, saying it that its a load of bullshit makes you a bigot. You should open yourself to different ideas of people in this group. Telling somebody that their ideas is a load of BS makes no contribution to a topic."

To which I answered "I call bullshit, bullshit, prove to me that the video is not bullshit and I will change my opinion."

And his comment was idiotic,  he called me a bigot for pointing out that a video posted was bullshit.  Where did he get his dictionary?  What definition of bigotry was he using? Being open to new ideas does not mean you should accept bad ideas.

At this point, concerned members try to mediate "Please be civil...the admins are watching...thank you..so far there is no ad hominem...thank you." and somebody else "Hi Roy, I think what people are trying to tell you is that there is a right way and a wrong way to debate a topic. The right way is civilly and not condescendingly. You are in group of very intelligent people. But everyone has their limitations and so can be wrong--even you and me."

The idiot also answered "We have different opinions to the said video I may not agree with all the content but it gave me an insight to the mind of the creator of the video." 

The idiot is hiding behind the "different opinions" argument,  lol,  post modernism in an atheist, I couldn't believe what I was reading.  He does not even try to give what insight it gave him.  So I try another tack to also appease the peacemakers.  I wrote "I stated the reasons why I think the video is bullshit, can you please share your opinions? What insights did you get from the video?"

His answer?  "My insight of the creator is that he has a strong political stand in something, just like you. In which he view that there is a specific reasons that our country is in a state in which it is now e.g. the 1987 constitution and the Oligarchy. It may be not the whole story but it is still a great idea that in order to solve the problem he propose a CHACHA. It is still a refreshing idea since I always hear a negative response when it comes to CHACHA etc.."

At this point, I think,  should I tell him that maybe he should study the proposal,  gut reactions based on non conformity to your social milleu is not a good way to live your life.  But I felt that would be condescending,  so I try to convince him that even though he thinks chacha is a good idea, the video itself is a bad one. 
"Ok, I can accept that. But please take into consideration my argument on why his video, as I call it, is bullshit, and I am going to repeat it in English so ________ can follow my reasoning.

Basically, the video is arguing that the answer to the prevailing poverty in the Philippines is a shift from a presidential to a parliamentary system of government. The only justification the video gives why this is so is because countries with parliamentary forms of government, Canada, UK, Australia, are more prosperous than countries with presidential forms of government, Haiti, etc.

I argued that that is fallacious reasoning as correlation does not equal causation, and if we are playing the the more prosperous card, the US is the richest country in the world, and the video maker did not put the US in the list of countries with presidential systems.

I argue that the omission of the US was a deliberate attempt by the video maker to stack the deck in favor of parliamentary systems."
 His answer?
"I already stated awhile ago that Philippines' and America's presidential system is way different so don't compare them as the same (Republic and Federal) . I will correct your statement, America is the most powerful country in the world but not the richest. They maybe the richest in terms of debt. They may hold most of the richest person in the world, but the country don't hold their wealth. My definition of a rich country is based on how the standard of living of a normal citizen in a country is. The video maker point out those top countries because a normal citizen in their country lives well ( medicare, security, food, shelter etc.) Right now America has a shitty medicare, security (gangs, prison overpopulation etc), there are more and more homeless due to the recession and foreclosure. If you are a poor citizen living in those country stated by the creator of the video, you will still live well compared to a poor American citizen. "
is misdirection.  I only used the US as an example, the argument I was making was correlation is not equal to causation,  the fact that these rich countries use a parliamentary form of government does not necessarily mean that it is the parliamentary form of government that is the cause of their prosperity.  The video does not even try to argue why a parliamentary form of government is superior to a presidential form of government,  it only present the correlation argument.  So I answered him.
"But the video only distinguished between presidential and parliamentary. So I am criticizing the video on its own claims. And correlation still does not equal causation, UK, Canada, and Australia all recognize the queen of England as their sovereign, does that mean that we should then recognize Queen Elizabeth as queen so we can become as rich as them?"
His answer? 
"WTH? Your also saying that Japan, Norway and the likes also recognize Queen Elizabeth? That statement just came from nowhere. Since when did you connect Parliamentary to the Queen of England. Though if my history is right the Parliamentary system started there but doesn't you give the credit to the Queen. And nowhere can you get rich by just recognizing a figure. BTW the purpose of the video was is to inform of the creator's purpose not to debunk the flawed system of the government in his own point of view. Quoted ("It is not based on reasoned factual argument, it was trying to convince people based on emotion not reason") by the looks of it your argument is based more on emotion not on reason."
This is when I realized he probably does not know the phrase correlation is not equal to causation.  This is when I think,  "Is this guy really and atheist?  He does not display any of the critical thinking skills that I associate with atheists.  But I still tried to be civil.
"Now you see the point I am making. correlation does not equal causation. he is saying that a parliamentary form of government is good because rich countries have parliamentary forms of government without any proof of why this is so. That is why the video's argument is bullshit.

As you have pointed out, his argument comes from nowhere."
At which point he goes back to the post modernist argument
"As I told you the video and your argument in my own understanding. I view the video as informative not as an argument or how to make a case. We view the video differently if in your own view its BS in mine it isn't. You don't get the view of others and you try to force others to on how view things. This isn't how it should be, even if you have your own stance in this argument you don't force them. If you have an aggressive stance in your beliefs and if you find others that suit your own world view you categorize it as BS. See my point? Do you understand my view?
Its a matter of perspective."
 So I tried to teach him the dangers of post modernism if you are an atheist
"No, a bad argument is a bad argument. A believer can tell you that his belief in a god is correct based on his understanding. That does not actually make it correct, because his belief is not based on evidence.

I accept your viewpoint that you find the video informative. That does not make the video actually informative. It does not give any information whatsoever."
 An atheist is somebody who believes that the evidence for the existence of god or gods is insufficient.  If you subscribe to the "this is my opinion, and my opinion is as good as yours"  Then you cannot then tell the believer that his opinion on the existence of god is wrong.  There are subjects and things where one's opinion is as good as another.  Favorite color, food, sexual orientation.  But we have standards for when a bad argument is a bad argument. Just because you think it is a good argument does not make it so,  and an atheist not familiar with logical fallacies is something I never thought would happen.  The support for religion is full of logical fallacies,  I had to argue my way out of these logical fallacies before I could call myself an atheist.  I guess not every atheist becomes one through reason and logic.

His answer? 
"WTH your first statement says that you have already accepted other's POV over the video and yet your final statement it isn't just because your POV is different. On what grounds do you hold to say which is informative or not. I don't want to argue anymore about this thanks anyways."
Which probably means he does not even comprehend well.  He thinks because I accept that he thinks the video is informative means that I accept that the video is informative.  These are 2 different things.  I accept that he is a moron that thinks a video that does not have any information to give is informative.  It does not necessarily mean that I accept that the video is informative,  specially since I proved time and again that it is not.  So I answered.
"I have stated time and again why the video is not informative. It seeks to change the government of the Philippines from presidential to parliamentary without giving sufficient reason. In fact, not giving any reason at all except for a fallacious correlation argument.

What definition of non-informative do you have, what information does the video give to a prospective person that wants to know more about the pros and cons of parliamentary vs presidential. None at all."
His answer?  a link to a video with the title "THE WORLD IS WAKING UP, ILLUMINATI BANKERS TREASON EXPOSED, WORLD REVOLUTION OF TRUTH AND JUSTICE"  and the text "Research and educate be the techear of your self :) PEACE KAIBIGAN"

Lol,  at this point I am thinking, shit, this guy is a conspiracy nut.  the Illuminati?  really?  what about the lizard men?  the masons, the catholic church?  What does this guy believe without evidence?  Now I know why he thinks that evidence free video is insightful.  so I just answere "lol, another fact free video"  and that is when the thread was deleted.


1 comment:

The Nashman said...

Charice Pempengco is an Illuminati. harhar.