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Old 03-07-2017, 12:00 PM   #151
zumby
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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Old 03-07-2017, 12:04 PM   #152
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

In fairness well named's debate with all in flynn did allow me the opportunity to suggest to AIF that he had successfully convinced me the world was designed much to his bemusement cos I don't think that's what he was angling for.
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:06 PM   #153
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

That was the joke...
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:14 PM   #154
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

I'm glad to see you're over it.
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:20 PM   #155
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

Never forget. Never forgive
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:24 PM   #156
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

Never punctuate consistently.
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:27 PM   #157
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

I blame my phone?
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Old 03-07-2017, 04:46 PM   #158
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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Never punctuate consistently.
This is excellent advice. Consistency in spelling is also boring and pedantic. In the real, real olden days of yore, in the US especially, spelling was a much more interesting game, flexible and challenging. It spiced up reading and writing and living in general. Just read Lewis and Clark's Journal in the original for a lively taste of what could be and how low we have sunk to currently. It's aboreant.
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Old 03-07-2017, 08:46 PM   #159
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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This is excellent advice. Consistency in spelling is also boring and pedantic. In the real, real olden days of yore, in the US especially, spelling was a much more interesting game, flexible and challenging. It spiced up reading and writing and living in general. Just read Lewis and Clark's Journal in the original for a lively taste of what could be and how low we have sunk to currently. It's aboreant.
Surely you mean 'aberrant' with your last word, though the humor of the cacography is not lost upon me. I must disagree, however, with your characterization of consistency in spelling. According to an accepted standard hardly rises to the level of ostentatious display or excessive concern with formality; quite the contrary, its ambition pursues efficiency and simplicity in communication. Therefore, 'pedantic' is an off descriptor.

This leads nicely to 'boring'. Take traffic laws, for example: is driving within the painted lines more 'boring' than swerving in and out of traffic and thus causing others to drive much more defensively in your midst? Yes, it probably is more 'boring'. Does that mean that it is 'better'? No, because standardization of form is usually not an end in of itself: it is a means to facilitate achievement of more important things, like communication, or in the case of this analogy, safe and ordered transportation.

Applying this to inconsistency of spelling, we find that more would be lost than gained by "spicing" things up with unorthodox constructions. More effort would be expended to discern meaning, which, despite being minimal per word, would produce a frustrating cumulative effect that would more than outweigh any "excitement" achieved via purposeful misspelling. I've read Old and Middle English texts: it can get fairly annoying, unless you're a wonk on the subject. Even if one gets 'used' to a certain inconsistency relative to the standard, the same effort would have to be expended with each new inconsistency, thus prrudoocing duh sayme neht lahs.

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Old 03-08-2017, 08:33 AM   #160
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

Analogies should be used to illustrate, not conclude. You shouldn't carry the conclusion of your traffic example over to a discussion on punctuation. James Joyce is rather famous for ignoring accepted rules of punctuation, but it is doubtful his prose poses any imminent danger.

Text have a wide variety of purposes. A technical manual is rarely (if ever) meant to do the same as a piece of poetry. The former has an emphasis on precision and consistency, while the latter typically aims to create rhythm and flow.

Punctuation rules are definitely useful and it's usually good to have consistency in communication. But grammar is the work of committees; joint conclusions based on overall analyses of language. They are not perfect and they are not meant to be static.
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Old 03-08-2017, 09:19 AM   #161
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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Analogies should be used to illustrate, not conclude. You shouldn't carry the conclusion of your traffic example over to a discussion on punctuation. James Joyce is rather famous for ignoring accepted rules of punctuation, but it is doubtful his prose poses any imminent danger.
I agree with your point here but his prose posed a significant danger to my desire to read his work.
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Old 03-08-2017, 09:53 AM   #162
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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I agree with your point here but his prose posed a significant danger to my desire to read his work.
Some of it is pretty hefty, but Dubliners is well worth checking out.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:02 PM   #163
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

My example of reading an unabridged version of Lewis and Clark's journals is a good fit and illustration that excellent descriptive writing and communication of information is not predicated on hard rules of spelling (or grammar), which generally were not employed during the timeframe of writing. The Diary's of other members of the expedition also have a rather open interpretation of certain rules. Strick adherent to hard rules is useful for some writing, technical and scientific and legal especially, or Journalism, but a looser standard in other fields can make for a more pleasurable reading experience. Too much polish can be as distracting as too little.


Ulysses is distracting
Emily Dickinson is not
and Italo Calvino can balance an eel on the end of his nose



All the above of course is rather subjective. I enjoy Ogden Nash. Many may not. Candy is Dandy - But liquor is quicker.

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Old 03-08-2017, 08:41 PM   #164
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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Analogies should be used to illustrate, not conclude. You shouldn't carry the conclusion of your traffic example over to a discussion on punctuation.
This is misleading for a couple of reasons, and I'll do you the courtesy of explaining both. First, my analogy to traffic rules was illustrative, not conclusory. I used it to demonstrate the principle in question, and then applied that principle to the case at hand, i.e., consistency in spelling. Ironically, while criticizing me for being unduly conclusory, you've managed to practice the folly.

Second, although I agree that analogies are generally best used for illustrative purposes, if a certain circumstance lends itself to a direct analogy where there is perfect parity of principle, an outright conclusion could be justified. But, as point one above makes clear, that is not what occurred here.

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James Joyce is rather famous for ignoring accepted rules of punctuation, but it is doubtful his prose poses any imminent danger.
This is also a rather misleading and ineffective counterpoint. My argument was that, on balance, orthography is worthwhile, if solely for efficiency in communication. That was what Zeno's post was getting after. Nowhere did I make mention of poetic license in specific contexts, which is what your Joyce example appears to regard. Therefore, this rejoinder is a straw man, as is the ending remark about imminent danger.

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Text have a wide variety of purposes. A technical manual is rarely (if ever) meant to do the same as a piece of poetry.
This does not undermine my original polemic in the slightest, and it appears to be an offshoot of your poetic license straw man above. My argument says nothing about text not serving a "wide variety of purposes"; rather, it makes note that, in general, consistency of spelling and grammar is desirable, and characterizing exercise of such consistency as "pedantic" or "boring" is unreasonable and unpersuasive in arguing for the contrary position. Of course text serves a wide variety of purposes, and for the most part, consistency in grammar and spelling is the best approach for ease and efficiency of communication to achieve those purposes.

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The former has an emphasis on precision and consistency, while the latter typically aims to create rhythm and flow.
See responses above. Repeating the same straw man about poetic license has nothing to do with my original position. =D

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Punctuation rules are definitely useful and it's usually good to have consistency in communication.
Well, at least you concede that much. That's pretty much my argument in a nutshell...so I'm not sure why you're responding with straw men. Just trolling me or something? What part of "I like arguing" did you not get from my confrontation with Mr. Aaron W.?

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But grammar is the work of committees; joint conclusions based on overall analyses of language. They are not perfect and they are not meant to be static.
This too is a straw man: regardless of grammar's ultimate origins (a combination of elite grammarian educators and linguistic logic), it has indeed been standardized. There may be circumstances, such as humor, poetry, slang, etc., where it is appropriate to deviate from this standardization, but for general use, the standard is usually the simplest and most efficient way of communicating meaning with appropriate tone. No one has argued, least of all me, that this standard is "perfect" or that it should not/does not evolve. The point is simply that consistency in general usage is more worthwhile than not, and you've already agreed with this above...

Let me know if you have any questions about this, but I would suggest canning the straw men in future retorts .

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Old 03-08-2017, 09:04 PM   #165
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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My example of reading an unabridged version of Lewis and Clark's journals is a good fit and illustration that excellent descriptive writing and communication of information is not predicated on hard rules of spelling (or grammar), which generally were not employed during the timeframe of writing.
I may very well agree with this stance if I have the pleasure of perusing L&C's journals further in the future. However, lest I be misunderstood (a fear tame_deuces may have already consummated), I was not arguing for strict prescriptivism. Even in their journals, L&C appear to maintain a degree of internal consistency, with much of the distinction to modern times owing to the temporal element (as opposed to purposeful differentiation). For example, the excerpt linked below carries a mostly straightforward grammatical approach:

http://college.cengage.com/history/a...lewis_clar.htm

Here is another link to various excerpts:

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/le...ls_maps_1.html

My point remains that consistency in usage is not reasonably characterized as pedantic or boring (though I realize you were probably being hyperbolic). If there is good reason to deviate from the standard (e.g., humor, slang, poetic license, etc.), then have at it. Otherwise, efficiency and simplicity counsel for consistency . No sense in being different just for the sake of being different if you haven't got a genuine expressive purpose behind it, 'na mean? Ya feel me? Kan youze dig it? Ok, I'll stop.

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Old 03-08-2017, 11:22 PM   #166
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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My initial thoughts to all seeded from another dimension theories is that nothing substantial has changed if the point of doing so is to provide a plausible alternative to the theological model, because now we're left with the question of who created the aliens etc. If your theory has the alien as always being with no origin, you may as well call him God.

Perhaps you're aware of that point, so that's why you're proposing that the parent universe doesn't have causality?

"No causality", and not "beings created universes" seems to be the much more difficult concept to fathom. (edit - fwiw to Uke-Master types)

What say ye? What hath ye sought to accomplish with this thread?
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There wasn't really a big goal or aim with the thread, more an open musing.

I'm what they call a weak atheist. I don't support saying "there is no god", I would rather say something ala "There is little to support there is a god", and in that there is of course also the implied admission that a god could exist.

This was an example of how one could imagine such a god. The keyword being imagine. While I try to be careful to not contradict established evidence, it's certainly just fictional guesswork and not much of substance. Still, I could (hypothetically) believe in it with little to no practical difference from my atheism.

If there is a argument to make at the end, it would be that weak atheism is more sound than a complete rejection of theism.
There are two sentences I have a problem with in this dialogue. The first is when I write : Perhaps you're aware of that point, so that's why you're proposing that the parent universe doesn't have causality? When I should have said, 'perhaps you're unaware of that? (that aliens creating universes doesn't change anything)

The second sentence is when you say: Still, I could (hypothetically) believe in it with little to no practical difference from my atheism.

It appears to me that if you believed in a being, in this case an alien, who always was and has no origin, such criteria is indistinguishable from a reasonable conception of a God, thus making you a theist.

When you say 'it makes little difference to me' (paraphrased), do you mean that since you have no knowledge of him/it, it's difficult to feel compelled to take any orders from them, thus you'd continue to live as seems best to you? So in that way, there's little to no practical difference to your atheism?
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Old 03-09-2017, 03:17 AM   #167
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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Snip.
In the future when you are trying to say that punctuation rules can be ignored, don't write that they shouldn't be. Affinity for punctuation does not provide you with powers of telepathy.
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Old 03-09-2017, 07:15 PM   #168
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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In the future when you are trying to say that punctuation rules can be ignored, don't write that they shouldn't be. Affinity for punctuation does not provide you with powers of telepathy.
You're continuing to misinterpret my polemic, which is unfortunate. My argument was that consistency of spelling is generally a good thing, and that it is misleading to characterize it as "pedantic" or "boring" (as Zeno had claimed, albeit probably facetiously). You responded with talk about poetic license, James Joyce, and now "telepathy". Zeno made a general declaration about consistency, and I responded to that general declaration. Your assumption that my statements extended to all circumstances, e.g., poetic license, is simply unreasonable, given the context. It is your prerogative to think otherwise, of course. No big D.

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Old 03-10-2017, 04:46 AM   #169
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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You're continuing to misinterpret my polemic, which is unfortunate. My argument was that consistency of spelling is generally a good thing, and that it is misleading to characterize it as "pedantic" or "boring" (as Zeno had claimed, albeit probably facetiously). You responded with talk about poetic license, James Joyce, and now "telepathy". Zeno made a general declaration about consistency, and I responded to that general declaration. Your assumption that my statements extended to all circumstances, e.g., poetic license, is simply unreasonable, given the context. It is your prerogative to think otherwise, of course. No big D.
I can only answer to what you write, not what you think. If you find that bothersome, write your actual view instead of using polemic.
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Old 03-10-2017, 10:34 PM   #170
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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I can only answer to what you write, not what you think. If you find that bothersome, write your actual view instead of using polemic.
That's the entire point: what I wrote was clear and cogent. You misinterpreted it, and now are attempting to save face through fallacious accusations of ambiguity. For someone who previously expressed displeasure at captious argumentation, you appear to have commenced a needless dispute on account of a reading comprehension failure. Irony achievement unlocked.

Oh, and "polemic" is simply a synonym for "argument". Expressing views through arguments, as opposed to simply stating conclusions, is a standard way of declaring viewpoint, especially in writing and when responding to an adverse position. If you find that bothersome, you can endeavor to improve your linguistic faculties. I've already explained to you why your interpretation of my polemic was unreasonable; instead of admitting error, you've chosen to continue a rather senseless confrontation. And that continues to be unfortunate.

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Old 03-11-2017, 03:13 AM   #171
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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Oh, and "polemic" is simply a synonym for "argument".
And as everyone knows, when two words are synonyms, one can be exchanged for the other in a one-to-one manner as if they have identical meanings.
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Old 03-11-2017, 07:21 AM   #172
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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That's the entire point: what I wrote was clear and cogent. You misinterpreted it, and now are attempting to save face through fallacious accusations of ambiguity. For someone who previously expressed displeasure at captious argumentation, you appear to have commenced a needless dispute on account of a reading comprehension failure. Irony achievement unlocked.

Oh, and "polemic" is simply a synonym for "argument". Expressing views through arguments, as opposed to simply stating conclusions, is a standard way of declaring viewpoint, especially in writing and when responding to an adverse position. If you find that bothersome, you can endeavor to improve your linguistic faculties. I've already explained to you why your interpretation of my polemic was unreasonable; instead of admitting error, you've chosen to continue a rather senseless confrontation. And that continues to be unfortunate.
A polemic is always strictly adversarial, an argument does not have to be. Perhaps you don't know this, but again, I can only respond to what you actually write.

The word polemic describes a very specific type of rhetoric amd derives from the greek "polemos", which means "war". Argument derives from the latin "argumentum", which means "support" and it is a very broad term. They can be synonyms which is why it is listed like so in dictionaries, but so can "love" and "appreciate".

You seem to enjoy using big words, there is a bit more to that than knowing how to spell them.

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Old 03-11-2017, 08:52 AM   #173
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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A polemic is always strictly adversarial, an argument does not have to be. Perhaps you don't know this, but again, I can only respond to what you actually write.
When an argument takes an adverse position in response to another position or conclusion, it is necessarily adversarial. That much is clear from my response to Zeno above. Therefore, in this circumstance, the argument I am making is undoubtedly a polemic, and the two words are contextually synonymous. Even without this equivalence, 'polemic' and 'argument' are very often used interchangeably, even when there is no direct adversity (we'll get to that in bit).

Moreover, this has little to do with the crux of the matter: Zeno made a general declaration regarding consistency in spelling, and I responded to that general declaration. You retorted with mention of how text has a "wide variety of purposes", "James Joyce", and "poetry", all points that had nothing to do with context or my post. In essence, you started an argument over a rather absurd misinterpretation of my response to Zeno because you refused to admit said misinterpretation, and have now commenced deflecting with fallacious semantics arguments and ad hominem (we'll get to that in a bit also).

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The word polemic describes a very specific type of rhetoric amd derives from the greek "polemos", which means "war". Argument derives from the latin "argumentum", which means "support" and it is a very broad term. They can be synonyms which is why it is listed like so in dictionaries, but so can "love" and "appreciate".
Copy/pasting from Google is fun and all, but when you're using it as filler to save face over your original mistake, it's hardly worth the time saved over forming your own thoughts. Not only did you err in failing to realize that a responsive argument taking a contrary position is a polemic, which is what my reply to Zeno is, but you now admit the more general fact that 'polemic' and 'argument' can be synonymous. This much I already mentioned: 'polemic' and 'argument' are often used interchangeably, regardless of adversity. In your attempt to deflect from the primary contention, you've managed to err in an entirely new dispute.

I still fail to see how this relates to your misinterpretation of my reply to Zeno, or to presenting a justification for starting a captious argument that now has you copy/pasting word origins from a basic Google search. The really hilarious part is that, despite the effort, my original statement regarding 'polemic' and 'argument' being synonymous is correct, especially in the context of an argument that takes the adverse position.

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You seem to enjoy using big words, there is a bit more to that than knowing how to spell them.
Lovely ad hominem, though entirely without merit. First off, I'm not sure what "big words" you're referring to. If it is "polemic", then your linguistic faculties are in a far more serious predicament than I originally thought. Secondly, as explained above, my use of the word was correct: it is synonymous with 'argument', especially when referring to an adverse position in response.

It seems you're developing a bit of a pattern here as far as reading comprehension goes: if I recall correctly, you posted about how I was ignoring another poster's (Original_Position) calls to "back up and source" my claims, though after I explained to you that I never made such claims, you failed to respond (most likely because you realized your mistake).

I guess you had enough of having your intellectual failures pointed out to you, so you decided to derail and deny your misinterpretation by copy/pasting an irrelevant summary of the origins of the words 'polemic' and 'argument' to give your mostly senseless reply a veneer of acumen and insight. Adorable. You do realize that a word's origin and how it is used, including what it is synonymous to, often have little in common? Let me know if you have questions about that- I know a good site on philology that breaks this down neatly and succinctly.

Pro tip for the future: when you make a mistake, just admit it and move on. Don't make a big psychotic spectacle of yourself by denying it and launching sophistic salvos about semantics. I'm not here to placate your intellectual insecurities: when you post something unreasonable on a public forum, you should not be surprised to get called out on it. If you want someone to pat you on the head and tell you you're right when you're clearly not, I suggest calling up your kin.

More, please. This is getting kind of fun now.

Last edited by Lychon; 03-11-2017 at 09:10 AM.
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Old 03-11-2017, 09:15 AM   #174
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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And as everyone knows, when two words are synonyms, one can be exchanged for the other in a one-to-one manner as if they have identical meanings.
Epic fail at appreciating context. Here, 'polemic' and 'argument' are indeed perfectly interchangeable, therefore "one can be exchanged for the other in a one-to-one manner as if they have identical meanings." When the context of use allows for an identity of meaning, the only material question is that of style. As has been explained in my response to tame_deuces above, not only are 'polemic' and 'argument' often used interchangeably, but in this circumstance, it is clear that my argument is adverse to Zeno's position, thus making the equivalence all the greater. It seems you've made the same error as tame_deuces by decontextualizing my statements and generalizing them. Not too cool.

Good to have you back, Mr. W. You've now commenced a second argument with me. Let's see if you can even the score on this one!

You know the drill.
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Old 03-11-2017, 11:26 AM   #175
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Re: An alternate cosmological argument

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When an argument takes an adverse position in response to another position or conclusion, it is necessarily adversarial. That much is clear from my response to Zeno above. Therefore, in this circumstance, the argument I am making is undoubtedly a polemic, and the two words are contextually synonymous.
But now you are now arguing that you DID write a polemic and were adversarial.

Disagreeing with that was what you led you to post insults and characterizations in the first place.

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Even without this equivalence, 'polemic' and 'argument' are very often used interchangeably, even when there is no direct adversity.
No.

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