Ad Hominem - why do people do it?

Discussion in 'Human Science' started by Quantum Quack, Aug 31, 2019.

  1. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

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    There is a difference between saying "X is not to be trusted" which regards X's character in general
    and "I conclude from his arguments that X is not participating honestly in this debate" which is situational and demonstrable.
    It presents a cause-effect relationship between present situation and his conclusion.
    It's a weak argument, and somewhat off-topic, but I still think it qualifies.
    More like: "Your reason for believing that is faulty: these were my good-faith arguments."
     
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  3. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    Last edited: Sep 3, 2019
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  5. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    II was giving an example of how not taking responsibility for your ignorance can lead to fatal consequences.
    and you respond with the attempt to insult with out any counter argument to support your insult.

     
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  7. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    if you could address post #123 I would appreciate it. Of course you are under no obligation to do anything.
     
  8. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    OK, so this has stopped being hypothetical, and the agenda to do a post mortem on another thread has been revealed.
    Since I'm not participating in that other thread, there's little to be gained by my participation here..
     
  9. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    No, it's not a sound argument as the faith of the poster has nothing to do with the worth of the points being raised. Motive, agenda, posting in good faith or not is not relevant to the point, or its worth. The points raised stand or fall on their own merit, not the character of the individual. And denigrating the points, tainting their worth, via an attack on the individual, is an ad hominem argument. That can be achieved either by directly addressing the points with the personal attack, or via a personal attack to avoid discussing them at all.
    If one wishes not to engage in discussion at all for that reason, fair enough, that is their perogative, but to use the argument to avoid specific questions due to a perceived motive is an ad hominem. You might think it justified, and not fallacious in its reasoning, but it remains an ad hominem argument.
    What does validity have to do with it? Validity is about the form of deductive arguments. Argumentum ad hominem is a matter of informality, nothing to do with validity.
    Yes, it is.
    Why are you bringing validity into the issue? Ad hominems have nothing to do with validity.
    And the good faith or not of the one making the points is irrelevant to the point made. If I make an argument: "X is Y because of Z", for example, that stands and falls on its own merits, and should be discussed on its merits. Bringing in issues of agenda or motive or faith of argument is irrelevant to that point. And being brought in to avoid the points is an argumentum ad hominem.
     
  10. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    perhaps you could quote the post that I chose not to respond to, or do you want me to do it ...
     
  11. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    Which is why it would merely be considered an insult and not an ad hominem. The insult was not the cause of the rejection of your argument but the conclusion of it.
     
  12. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    True... I never stated it was an AHA. The poster only incorrectly assumed I believed it was because I invited him/her to participate in this thread.

    Opinion:

    Rushing in to abuse your opponent with out proper assessment normally reflects badly on the one doing the rushing...as usually they make terrible strategic mistakes.

    When making such an outrageous statement such as "You are a retard" it not only demonstrates that the poster is locked up in the obsolete mindset, it demonstrates that the person has no empathy for those afflicted with serious cognitive difficulties, especially those readers, family and friends, who may stumble upon their post and take umbrage accordingly.
    If you Google "Sciforums" you will notice a few things as to why the forums reputation is the way it is...
    Abusive postings if allowed to remain in pubic view are utterly destructive to a web forums reputation and all persons who participate in it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2019
  13. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    By anyone who reads what is said.
    One may not have an intention to insult, for example, but the context and conclusion of what one says may result in what you say having that purpose. Purpose as in being the reason for an effect.
    Each individual possibly has different reasons for interpreting things the way the do.
    What relevance is any of this?
     
  14. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    Don't get hung up on the need for arguments to be in the form of syllogisms.
    An argument is any reason or set of reasons that support an idea or belief or action.
    Any sentence that includes words like "because..." or "given that..." by way of explaining a thought process contains an argument and a conclusion: something is done (belief, action, idea) for justification X.
    Don't get hung up on deductive arguments and syllogisms.
    No, it would be that the despite the perception of bad faith, the points remain worthy of consideration.
    One would not counter the belief, as that is a subjective matter, but the conclusion, and the irrelevancy of motive to the conclusion reached.
    Something like that.
     
  15. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    The implication is writ large for all to see, and it is rather disingenuous of you to try to now distance yourself from it simply because you didn't explicitly state it.
    But I'll leave that between you and Bw/S

    For what it's worth, we've had one prolific poster in the past who refused to acknowledge the patently obvious implications of what they posted, claiming that because they didn't explicitly state it then its implication can not be held against them. Please don't go down that route.
     
  16. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    It is your self confessed ignorance of the relevance that drives your incorrect assessment that my post was an argumentum ad hominem.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2019
  17. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    nice side step... and example of agumentum ad hominem.
    I presented a valid and solid example for why people need to take responsibility for their ignorance and get labeled a retard for doing so...
    I invited the poster to this thread, the inferences drawn were that of the poster not mine.
    I am not responsible for that poster's state of mind...or the interpretations that state generates.
    How can I be?

    It refers in part, to the reasoning behind Ignorantia juris non excusat "Ignorance of the law is no excuse" applied to a more social, common sense setting.
    Or more specifically
    Ignorance of what you are doing is no excuse - re: unwise science
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2019
  18. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    I'll wait for you to actually post why it is relevant, then. Otherwise your comments will continue to remain vacuuous.
    Not at all. You're the one trying to side-step responsibility for the implication of what you posted. Just own it and move on. Nothing to be gained from not doing so, and will only result in further ridiculous face-saving efforts on your part keeping us amused. But I'll leave you to resolve any issue you have with it with Bw/S. It's enough for me to have concluded that it wasn't the ad hominem argument it was implied to be.
     
  19. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    another good example of an Argumentum ad hominem... .. another example for your thread in the philosophy fora.
    I may join that thread later but as I have the day off, I am heading for the beach for the day, so maybe later...
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2019
  20. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    Years ago someone taught me a very profound lesson by asking me to think on the question:
    Who is responsible for your feelings?

    Another thread topic perhaps titled "The blame game" but I am not sure I will bother ... perhaps someone else could start it...
     
  21. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    That makes no difference - the argument is not about the points being raised, but rather the worth of engagement with the poster who is raising them - or in the case of bullshit, pretending to raise them.
    The faith of the poster is directly relevant, and a valuable criterion for making that decision. The argument is sound, not an ad hominem argument.
    No, it isn't.
    See post 140, on the topic of dealing with bullshit.
    Btw: That format, that question, is exactly one of my examples of the common circumstances in which the decision to engage with the poster's arguments is a critical matter worthy of discussion.
    As I have posted several times now, when dismissing the relevance of the points raised, regardless of their validity, in making that decision.
    It is relevant to the decision of whether or not to engage with the poster's arguments.
    But it is relevant to the decision to engage with that poster, deal with the poster's arguments and points.
    The argument was not about the points raised by the bad faith poster. It was about the worth of engagement with the points raised by the bad faith poster.
    "Argumentum ad hominem" is a formal designation, a category of invalid (fallacious) argument.
     
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  22. wegs With brave wings, she flies . . . Valued Senior Member

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    I think we need to remember and maybe we forget this a lot when ''debating,'' whether offline or online, our perception of others might taint how we view their arguments. Their arguments could be completely valid, but we might dismiss them because we don't respect/like the person giving them. I've always found it more challenging to learn from people whom I don't really respect, nor like...even if their ideas are solid.
     
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  23. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

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    That's a bit of conundrum, online. If you've never met somebody - like, they never stole your parking spot, or yogurt, or promotion - what caused the dislike and disrespect? How did they make a negative impression on you? Presumably through their posts. (Well, okay, maybe their use of emoticons. That can be very annoying.) If their arguments had been completely valid and had something to teach you, why would you have conceived such an animosity toward them as to dismiss those arguments?
     

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