Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast
Results 11 to 20 of 24
  1. Collapse Details
    #11
    Senior Member ahalpert's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    2,745
    Default
    I like to debate but I dont like to fight. Fighting is stressful. Debate is good intellectual exercise and usually helps me clarify my own reasoning. And then you sometimes get the pleasure of winning the debate or else the value of learning something new.
    www.VideoAbe.com

    "Captain, the most elementary and valuable statement in science, the beginning of wisdom, is 'I do not know.'" - Lt. Cmdr. Data


    Reply With Quote
     

  2. Collapse Details
    #12
    Senior Member James0b57's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    6,059
    Default
    Quote Originally Posted by mcbob View Post
    Modern teaching and culture has greatly emphasized feelings over facts.
    interesting, how do you mean?


    Reply With Quote
     

  3. Collapse Details
    #13
    Senior Member James0b57's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    6,059
    Default
    Quote Originally Posted by combatentropy View Post
    I was waiting for someone to post that Monty Python skit

    To clarify my question, by argument I mean any kind of disagreement. Nowadays a lot of people hear argue and think quarrel or bicker, like my parents used to do in the evening. But I include those meanings as well as the older meaning, retained in courtrooms: to state your position and support it with reasons, logic, evidence, etc.

    In fact I don't see them as different kinds of disagreement but different degrees in quality of execution. If you look at almost any disagreement, there are reasons trotted out, but they vary in their strength of evidence and logical coherence --- often depending, yes, on how sober the arguers keep themselves.

    On DVXUser as a whole, I would say the quality is . . . medium. Sometimes people argue strenuously with no logical consistency or third-party evidence, and sometimes we say something really insightful and sublimely helpful.
    love this subtle argument ;)


    Reply With Quote
     

  4. Collapse Details
    #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    7,123
    Default
    I used to really go at it on many a forum because I really felt many posts and many posters were incredibly wrong and their statements couldn't withstand a reasonably articulated challenge. To some extent, it was a necessary proof of a personal self-worth - and I wouldn't call it vanity - that over time vindicated my opinions.

    Example 1 - on old AOL NFL forums back in the 1990's, I argued against a certain Packers head coach. The majority of posters on the Packers board were also Packers fans but they supported the coach because they were in the "our management can do no wrong" clique. I had some people privately email me, "I agree with you but I can't stand the vitriol of other fans to argue". Well, that one was easy, as the coach was fired soon, which means fans also turned against him because 'our management was always right".

    Example 2 - on the same era WWII forums, I got into an argument with an official US military historian about the irrecoverable (KIA, MIA, POW) losses of the Red Army during one of the major WWII battles. He had a book out but I told him that, off the latest Russian sources, he was horribly underestimating them. I pointed the source. The reply was, "I don't trust him". Over the last twenty years, the declassified estimates had both of us wrong but I was way, way closer. And his analysis was wrong. And still is.

    Example 3 - on a soccer centered forum, many a US fan was giddily unrealistic about budding US starlets. I played soccer in my youth and followed the sports closely back in the day and replied that the fan analysis was very much off. In a decade and a half since that period, the starlets in question became a running joke among the same US fan base.

    Example 3 1/2 - a relative of a very well known US soccer coach - he probably had a drinking problem - emailed me on several occasions with some choice vernacular. That one actually had some real life consequences. Not for me, but for the US owners of a certain soccer club, who bought into the US generated PR that the coach was anything but a moron. They ended up hiring him, then firing him after two months, then suffering huge financial losses due a string of bad results. That one pleased me greatly.


    Reply With Quote
     

  5. Collapse Details
    #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Charlottesville, va
    Posts
    2,614
    Default
    Quote Originally Posted by James0b57 View Post
    interesting, how do you mean?
    I suppose it's truthfully been a thing in different names for time immemorial... a few noted points in human history where a small-but-vocal/violent cultural movement reached unilateral "consensus" and decided a number of things completely contrary to simply observable scientific realities in order to placate a population's/autocracy's/dictator's "feelings," usually resulting in quite a lot of people being murdered for no good reason. We haven't gotten completely there yet in its current iteration, not for lack of desire on the Feelers' part (many of whom have stated as much).

    I'd be more specific, but I'd hurt someone's feelings and they'd enact some form of vengeance.



    I guess I can think of one fairly innocuous illustration: commercials.

    I'm old enough to remember when car commercials actually mentioned technical features of the car that was the subject of the commercial. I don't know when the last time I saw a modern car commercial that did the same... but they'll certainly push a "feeling" that the car/truck is intended to give you, the identity you can adopt by ownership of ThingStuff, etc etc. Commercials have always pushed a feeling, but now that's all they push... because that's what sells.
    Last edited by mcbob; 09-21-2020 at 11:39 AM.
    Pudgy bearded camera guy
    http://mcbob.tv


    Reply With Quote
     

  6. Collapse Details
    #16
    Rockin the Boat
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Los Angeles CA
    Posts
    2,944
    Default
    As folks have already made the distinction - intellectual disagreement vs quarrel. When it comes to arguments as intellectual disagreements, I absolutely LOVE them. If you have a different opinion about something, I LOVE to hear it, and the best way to hear your differing opinion is to present mine as a contrast and then hash it out. I want to know why you enjoy a given film for example, and that's why I'll often join threads here on these topics. The reasons are many - it is an occasion to learn something. Perhaps you have some reasons that escaped me, or have not occured to me. That's fantastic! I love learning about stuff. Or perhaps I'll simply learn about people's taste - folks like something that I don't, that's interesting and one of those things "I learned something about humanity". A silly example - there are "chick flicks". I'm not into "chick flicks", they bore me. But they are a very important part of the market. It behooves me to understand it - if I don't, and I simply dismiss it because I don't like it, then I'll live in self-satisfied ignorance. Through time, I've come to understand what "chick flicks" are all about (same as "romance novels"), and although I have not come to like them, I've come to understand a bit more about the craft of making them (and writing them). That's valuable to me, it broadens my horizons, even though it didn't change my taste.

    And because I like to learn, I'm in largely immune (insofar as I can tell!) to groupthink. This is a regular experience in my life - everyone around a table, or in a thread online, or some social occasion is nodding and agreeing about something. I don't automatically co-sign. If it strikes me as wrong, or absurd, I have zero compunction about chiming in with a strong "NO!". This by the way, has happened on these boards over and over again - a whole thread starts about whatnot (say a movie) and you'll have a page or two of nothing but people agreeing with each other and I look at that and it seems insane to me and I'll step in and disagree with zero regard to precedent and most often finally a real discussion starts with far more interesting and subtle observations. Most recently it happened in the "Dune" thread where it started with everyone agreeing with each other to death, and I read it with increasing incredulity. I thought the trailer was absolute trash and couldn't believe it was getting no pushback - so I stepped in with a "are we watching the same trailer?!" tone and finally the thread took off and running - far more interesting IMHO than all the nodding heads in agreement. I didn't do it because I thought "well, let me bestow my wisdom", but rather, hey, it seems absurd to me, but who knows, when everybody says "X", you might be wrong, maybe they have good reasons... so let's hear them! I don't mind being the guy to scream "the emperor has no clothes", but that is not what's going on here - rather it's the "uhm, am I missing something?" I am happy to learn. I just won't take any BS, that's all, and I have a strong enough sense of self and confidence to not be afraid to be the only dissenting voice if need be. And if I think I'm right, and the counter-arguments are weak, then I'm happy to stand alone and I will not be bullied or swayed by popular numbers pressure into changing my opinion.

    The other thing (I think someone already mentioned it) is that sometimes by arguing my position, I refine my views. Arguing forces me to re-think my reasoning and present it more clearly. It's the same when you're asked to explain something and you realize that your ideas might be a bit more hazy than you thought. And there is nothing more compelling in learning than disagreement.

    I'll make an analogy. I love learning languages. And the best way to learn is not just from books and teachers. The very best way I found, is to live with someone, because you desperately want to communicate and you are full-on engaged. And the same when you have a discussion with someone and are trying your very best to communicate - you learn the language super fast. The more engaged you are, the faster you learn. That's why far from preferring bloodless arguments, I like heated arguments - you are full on engaged, and your mind works overtime. Tangential note - I was listening to a series of MasterClasses ($180 per year), and I came across a course by author Dan Brown (Da Vinci Code etc.) and he mentioned something which many psychologists have already known about - your mind works better when you are physically engaged. So, every hour Dan Brown gets up from his desk and exercises to get his body going, and then sits down and his writing benefits. It's the same observation as about performance - when you have a degree of excitement, you are more creative, you learn better, you perform better (like on exams and tests) and so on. This is why I like very much the opposite of what Battuta likes - I do like the pedal to the metal analogy, the strong opinion, the strong position, the "violent" disagreement and so on... as Keynes observed long ago, you get people's attention, and you get the juices flowing and you get engagement - ENGAGEMENT. The key to it all, as I see it, and my mantra on these boards "the single most important and really ONLY principle in art is to ENGAGE your audience". The stronger the better. In other words, I like arguments, and also I like my arguments with a side of strong coffee.

    Quarrel is a different matter. Here my feelings are more nuanced. I don't like quarreling pointlessly. Senseless screaming matches - nope. On the other hand, I'm not "conflict averse". If an a$$hole needs to be confronted, I am happy to put him in his place. That sometimes was my function - to do that job, "send in OldCorpse". Because I think it's needed in society the same way you need enforcement of conduct norms and confronting bullies. Otherwise bullies run free. I actually ENJOY confronting bullies, because they're used to people cowering, and I hit back hard, frequently with a dedication that takes 'em aback. I hate bullies. Someone has to stop them, and I volunteer. Those who torment the weaker need to know that they will be confronted and opposed.

    So all in all, I find arguing to the highly valuable and immensely enjoyable. It is the foundation of civilization and learning. Plato's dialogues are the birth of philosophy and science - the form they took was of arguments (between Socrates and his opponents), questions, and the subsequent examination of all our assumptions, and this is how civilization is built. We learn best through arguments and the exploration of our disagreements and differences - both parties learn. Arguments are what makes us human. LONG LIVE ARGUMENTS - WHO DISAGREES?! I'LL TAKE YOU ON RIGHT NOW!!!


    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Reply With Quote
     

  7. Collapse Details
    #17
    Senior Member James0b57's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    6,059
    Default
    Quote Originally Posted by mcbob View Post
    I suppose it's truthfully been a thing in different names for time immemorial...
    Ok, got it. Was wondering if you meant the education system by "teaching", but yeah, I'd agree that in a cultural value sort of way, in North America, feelings are valued over logic to a point. And most debates/conversations I've had with people over the years indicate that people are emotional thinkers first, and logic comes along for the ride.

    But when you mentioned "teaching" you weren't referring to specific changes in education and schools?


    Reply With Quote
     

  8. Collapse Details
    #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    7,123
    Default
    You guys/gals should visit some Russian language forum/comment section

    Poster A - Our coaches suck. Our players are imbeciles. We're destined for failure.

    Poster B - Eff you. Eff you twice. Go back to Europe.


    Reply With Quote
     

  9. Collapse Details
    #19
    Default
    OldCorpse, I am a bit jealous of your immunity to others' opinions. I think you know this, but that trait is rare. Most of us, against our will, feel at least a pull from what others feel (more accurately, by what we think others feel).

    I believe a lot of it is genetic. I don't believe we're all blank personalities that take shape merely through environment and will. I strive to face conflict, but it will always drain me more than others. I like to think that it is the double-edged sword of empathy. I quickly sense how others feel, and it gets under my skin, becomes part of me. Again I think it is genetic, because it comes easy for me, without really trying and often against my will.

    Now about your theory that heated argument leads to better argument (you said you like intellectual debate, so here it is). I agree that taking a walk is remarkable in how much it clears the mind. Problems that I was stuck on, quickly clear up. And exercise in general is as good for the brain as it is for other organs.

    However, I don't think it's the same kind of heat. When someone says something provocative, it certainly now has my attention, but how well do I have my faculties? I rediscovered the word sober-minded. Nowadays we only use sober to mean, not having had too much alcohol lately. But it also means, not "drunk" on anything, be it love, anger, joy, whatever. I'm beginning to sound like Marcus Aurelius, but I promise I'm not a stoic. There is "a time to weep and a time to laugh." But when I get angry or fearful or in general emotional, it is like being drunk. Certain inhibitions melt away. Forming coherent thoughts gets harder.

    If you're one of those people who think coolly under pressure, that's awesome. But me and a lot of people get into fight-or-flight. Adrenaline is not the same thing as good circulation. The anterior parts of my brain that get engaged, they don't do the same kind of thinking as my prefrontal cortex. So you may well have me engaged, but what part of me?

    As for the thread about Dune specifically, you're right, you were the first to say "now wait a minute". I was already thinking what I eventually wrote, but I did not want to pour icewater on the party. Let them have their fun, I was thinking. When you crashed the party, the party was over. So then I felt better about adding in my two cents. But I think I also would have chimed in the same way had you just done even the lamest contradiction, like "I don't know for sure if this movie will turn out that well." I'm not recommending that kind of language. It's wordy. It tries to suffocate emotion with pillows. I prefer precise ("I dislike him") but not hyperbolic ("he's a total failure of a director and his movies are utter garbage"). Like I said before, for some reason your verbal firewalls don't bother me very much, they kind of make me smile. Maybe it's because I sense, like you said, that your intentions are not just to vent but to move the conversation to higher ground. (It's the sweet-talking back-stabbers that you have to look out for.)
    Last edited by combatentropy; 09-21-2020 at 11:33 PM.


    Reply With Quote
     

  10. Collapse Details
    #20
    Senior Member James0b57's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    6,059
    Default
    For examples of arguments, see also
    http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread...post1986843066

    A thread where we all argue about how things are pronounced, even though we all know what is being said regardless of pronunciation.


    Reply With Quote
     

Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •