What is Truth?

Discussion in 'Human Science' started by James R, Sep 11, 2022.

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  1. parmalee peripatetic artisan Valued Senior Member

    I've always had this bad habit of putting on to paper (or screen) things which really ought to remain in my head and being very easily seduced by distractions. In discussions, I'm often reliant upon others to sort of "rein (me) in," so to speak.

    Consequently, while it's really not got much to do with the (alleged) topic at hand, I'm just dying to know how supposed "metacommentary" and the like is somehow not relevant to this thread, while repeatedly asking you (and others, on occasion) whether you're upset, bothered, or whatever, somehow is relevant.
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  3. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    To tell the truth, I'm in two minds as to whether I ought to respond to you point by point, or just post a short paragraph and be done with it. Okay, maybe I'll do both: the summary first and then the point-by-point clarification.

    Here's the summary: I get the impression that you're still all riled up about my comments to you and your mate Seattle regarding your little discussion about autism. Because your hackles are up about that, you're all but unable to allow any give and take in the on-topic discussion with me. Instead, you're trying to "bash" me into submission, as you would put it. The atmosphere that you are creating in this conversation is not very conducive to a useful exchange of ideas, in my opinion. Nevertheless, through the rage you've still managed to make some useful points, which is one reason I will extend my response beyond this paragraph. It's the courteous thing to do, to acknowledge the effort you've put in.

    Now, believe it or not, I started this thread to toss around some ideas about Truth. I have some opinions and thoughts on the matter, but I'm not glued on to them and I won't be fighting to the death to defend them. If that's what you're expecting me to do, I'm afraid you're out of luck. If this is a contest for you, then you can take the "win" and walk away now, if that's what maintaining your self-esteem requires. I'm actually not very interested in going toe to toe with you about which of us is right on the internet about Truth.

    That's the summary. Now, I'll respond to what you wrote, in case some things remain unclear.
    You're accusing me of bad intentions, and of either telling lies or unconsciously just being a bad person. It looks like you're trying to start a fight about that. It doesn't make for a very productive conversation.
    It's early days in the discussion. I was happy to engage, before. Now, I'm not so sure. If you're belligerent and in somebody's face, don't be surprised if they don't want to keep talking with you.
    I think I'm mostly advocating for an objective end goal, to the extent that I'm advocating at all.

    I'm not talking about somebody's preferences here. I'm talking about the Truth.
    I did. I asked you, for instance.
    If I already thought I have all the answers, I wouldn't have started the discussion in the first place.
    Good to hear you're not set on one particular position, on this. Willing to listen to different opinions is good.

    For clarity, then: I don't want to impose my interpretations of these statements (which are not mine, as you might have picked up already) on anybody else here. As I said, part of the exercise involves interpreting the meaning for yourself. What's interesting about this, to me, is to find out how different people interpret the statements and how they respond to them. Understand?
    I don't know the full context. I don't think the responses of one guy, whom I mentioned in passing, are that important. Do you? Or is it that you just can't get past your assumption that I must be looking to "bash" Trump supporters? Do you self-identify as a Trump supporter yourself? Is that why you're so upset? You think I'm trying to bash you, by proxy?
    Why is the context so important to you? What important information are you looking for, exactly? What do you think you need to know?
    I don't want one guy's answers to influence whatever your answers - or the answers of other people here - might be. Like I said, I don't think his answers are that important, in and of themselves. Moreover, the questions I have put in this thread are only some of the questions that were put to him, and I'd like to get at some of the others in at least one other thread. I don't want you (or anybody else) primed on those questions, either.

    If you feel uncomfortable about making up your own mind without "full disclosure" from me, then by all means feel free not to participate. I repeat, however, that my intention is not to set a "trap" for anyone.

    Perhaps I wasn't clear earlier, or perhaps you didn't read my full post before jerking your knee a rush to post an angry rejoinder.

    I am leaning towards the view that "subjective truths" don't exist. There are opinions and there is Truth. Of course, I could be wrong.

    I'm not sure what you're referring to, with that.
    Then, in principle, the two of us are in essentially the same position and, theoretically, we should be able to have a polite and civil discussion about the matter. Yet you seem angry.
    Okay. Interesting. Is "subjective truth" different from a personal opinion? If not, why give it the label "truth"?

    Some people have already given their "why". I think you have, to some extent. What do you think I ought to be asking, that I have not already asked?

    I'm not sure I'm understanding you.

    You're saying that if I believe in anything subjective, then I have to believe in "subjective truth" as well?

    You don't have to do anything. But I'm not guaranteed to understand something you've made no attempt to explain.
    Could have fooled me. Your entire post has a belligerent tone to it. I think you left what you're really upset about to the end, though.
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  5. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    I agree that "X is beautiful" is a different proposition than "W thinks X is beautiful".

    If I previously gave the impression that I thought these were the same proposition, then I apologise. I should have been clearer.

    Yes, they are. But I'm not yet convinced that "beautiful" is a thing that can be objectively true of X. If things can be objectively beautiful, then it follows that X either is or is not beautiful, and that is the Truth of the matter. It then follows that either W or Y is wrong. On the other hand, if beauty is a purely subjective quality (in the eye of the beholder?) then we can only talk meaningfully about W's and Y's opinions about the beauty of X. There would be no Truth to find on the matter of X's beauty. Note, however, there would still be truths to be found about W's and Y's opinions of X's beauty.

    Do you agree?

    I've only told people what I think it is. Nobody is obliged to agree with me. If you disagree, you can tell me why you think I'm wrong.

    This is how conversations work, isn't it?

    I have some ideas about what Truth currently means to me. However, I recognise that I am just one more data point. I could, conceivably, be wrong about some things. Perhaps a cordial discussion could change my mind about some things.

    I haven't limited myself. I am open to expanding myself, for instance by asking you for your thoughts.

    Why the snark at the end of that? Maybe try losing that. It doesn't add anything useful to the discussion, and it's mean-spirited.

    You didn't answer my question. Instead, you danced around it. Why? I'll ask again:

    Will it upset you if it turns out that I think differently to you about Truth?

    Note: I was not asking if you think you should be upset, in a hypothetical world, by some objective measure. I was asking you whether you would get more upset that you already are if it turns out that I hold some opinion on Truth that you disagree with.

    Actually, I think you've already answered the question, implicitly.
    You had a justification - one that satisfied you, subjectively. However, like you, I'm not convinced that a causally disconnected "justification" of that kind ought to count towards knowledge:
    I'd say "no". What do you think?
    I don't think so. If something is true, then there will be reasons why it is true. Reasons provide justification for knowing that it is true.

    There is a reason the car is not working correctly. It is true that the car is not working correctly. The person driving the car made a mistake in assuming the reason was related to the loud pop that he heard.
    Thanks for the suggestion. I might take a look.
    I think that if something is true, there can be reasons (justifications) given for why it is true. It is conceivable that nobody will know the reasons, I suppose, but I think there will still be some.
    I'm working through it. This thread might help with that. Or maybe not.

    If I already had all the answers, I wouldn't have started the thread. Understand?

    Do you only talk about things you already know everything about? That would be very self-limiting, if you ask me.
    Not evading. I just don't have an answer yet. You sound bothered - angry even. Why?

    Maybe next time, read my entire post first, before rushing to reply in a rage. It might save time.
    It's clear you're upset.

    So you're calling me stupid, dishonest and pathetic? Or just one or two of the three? Just so we're clear.
    That's your interpretation. It's wrong, but it's yours.

    It's almost funny. If I was out to bash somebody, I think I'd probably be less subtle about it. Also, if I was really as stupid as you say I am, I probably wouldn't be capable of even this level of subtlety.
    It's a shame that you don't regret anything. Maybe Seattle convinced you to join with him in his bigotry. Either way, it ends up reflecting poorly on your character. Maybe in time you'll come to see how you could have behaved more morally. I hope you do. When you do, maybe you can talk to Seattle and explain it to him, because his moral compass is currently more poorly calibrated than yours, as far as I can tell.
    Shame on you. Try to do better.
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  7. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Again... ??? Seriously ??? You have a significantly overinflated sense of your own ability, JamesR. Your comments on the matter were banal, pointless, ill-informed, and basically a waste of everyone's time as you posted a lengthy response in order to try to score points, on a matter you yourself criticised for being off-topic, thus resulting in even more replies about it. You think your comments riled me? I'd honestly forgotten them almost as soon as I replied to them. Yet here we are, you still unable to let it go, for whatever reason. But, typical for you, you'd rather try and psychoanalyse in order to try to show how better you are, even if you get it hilariously wrong. Whatever.
    They're not. But thanks for playing. Are you not able to simply respond to my comments, and not the person behind them? Can you do that? Hub? Can you?
    There has been no discussion yet. You haven't begun one until now. You've asked people to answer some questions. That’s it.
    If the submission you claim I'm after is an actual discussion, then yeah, that's what I'm bashing you for. But instead you'd rather try and make it all about the person. As usual, it seems, when you struggle.
    You haven't even tried, instead coming up with this gumph instead as a precursor, again trying to bash the person before any discussion has begun. Again... ??? Seriously ???
    Oh, good grief.

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    Sure, JamesR, if it makes you feel better, I've hulked-out, my heckles are up, my blood is boiling, steam is coming out of my ears, and whatever similarly false metaphor you want to come up with. If it makes you feel better to think that, sure, whatever. Don't let reality stand in your way.
    So far what you've said is irrelevant and wrong. But, well, whatever.
    There you go! Playing the "I'm better than you" card! Thanks.
    Again, you're making it all about the person, JamesR. It's all irrelevant. But thanks.
    "Bad person" is relative. But if it stops you doing either because you are now aware of it and actively stop doing it, then that's good for whatever follows.
    If you think I'm "in your face" then perhaps you're sitting too close to your monitor.
    And what would you think an objective end goal be? Can you provide an example?
    Are you dismissing the notion that preferences can inform truths?
    Tell you what, why not start with the basics: what do you think "truth" is? Look, it's the thread title, even. How would you, at this moment, define truth?
    No, you didn't. You said what your aims were, and thus what a subsidiary question might be. That's not asking me, that's telling me what the question you might ask would be. Yeah, it's a good subsidiary question. So ask it.
    Don't be so dishonest, please. Others have answered your questions, and you think they have "all the answers" to those? People have put their current thinking down as their answers. Are you not able to do the same with questions you either have asked or want to ask?
    Then you're going to struggle, with so many of such discussions, of people talking cross-purposes. "I think X leads to this!", "No, X leads to that!", when they're operating from different notions of what X is / means.
    Then you should help the discussion by asking people up front to define what they mean by the word, and thus the context in which they have answered. Surely that is a better way to run this discussion. That way people can see what someone else means by the word, and whether they think the person's responses are consistent. Otherwise we're all just guessing as to what people mean, and that's no way to have a discussion.
    They're important to you, that's why you mentioned him and his responses.
    As said, if you have history and stand with a loaded gun, don't be surprised if people assume things.
    Again, what is it with you and thinking people are upset? If it helps, I'm genuinely laughing as I respond. But, whatever.
    Context might be important depending on the use you wish to put that person's responses.
    Then I'm not sure why you mentioned that he was a Trump supporter, or the apparent alignment with "alternative fact" etc. You clearly did think his answers important, but if you're saying they're not, okay.
    We'll see if that holds.
    Whatever else you might have put in your post doesn't change the fact that what you wrote was a strawman. You changed it from "truth" to "a truth". It's a small yet important difference, as I tried to explain. It was no knee-jerk response, but, again, whatever makes you feel better about those you're responding to.

    Look, if you can't be precise in what you write, that's one thing, but to then try and dismiss the matter as you're doing when someone points it out, that's not good. A simple "oh, no, you're right, I didn't mean the indefinite article" etc. would have been more apt a response.
    I think you may be confusing "fact" with "truth". Facts are objective while opinion is subjective. I would put those two things as the objective/subjective distinction of the same category. But truth and facts are not oft considered the same, and that propositions / claims / statements are the only class of things that can be true, the more popular philosophy being that such are true iff (i.e. if and only if) such a claim corresponds to fact (correspondence theory of truth) etc. However, philosophy also has much to say about what a fact is, and in many regards is circular to truth, in that it is deemed to be the truth-bearer, etc. Science has one view of what a fact is, and so science will have one idea of what sorts of things can be true if one adheres to the correspondence theory.
  8. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Continued… 2
    You equated two different propositions. I highlighted that they were not the same, to which you replied "That would be a truth, would it not?" The implication is clearly that because it is "a truth", that is all that matters, and not whether it is the same truth as that of the other proposition.
    No, JamesR, I am not angry, although you constantly trying to insinuate that I am, even if just to make you feel better about yourself, is tiresome, pathetic, and a little frustrating to have to deal with. Further, theoretically, even if we weren't in what you consider "essentially the same position" it would make no difference to the nature of the discussion we might have. Our positions on the matter have no bearing on it.
    From someone else's point of view, no, probably not. I give it the label "subjective truth" because to the individual it is true, in that the proposition "X is beautiful" corresponds to the fact of their finding X beautiful.

    Now, you may say that we are therefore of the same view, and that all I do is label such an opinion as "subjective truth", but that would be to miss the whole point of the discussion, would it not?
    If you genuinely wanted to know, you should have asked outright for people to explain why they have answered as they have. Just getting "Strongly agree" doesn't do that. But we live and learn. And as you say, you think I have "to some extent".
    No. I'm saying that if you a priori believe only in the objective then you automatically dismiss the subjective, and are not open to the notion of it. You demonstrate the point a bit further on.
    When even simple explanations go over your head, it's no wonder you’re oblivious to those that have been given.
    You're right, I could. But I'm haven’t even tried.
    And there it is again: your obsession with whether I'm upset or not. Again, if it makes you feel better to think that I'm upset, have at it.
    Yes, you should have. Would have saved some considerable time.
    Of course you’re not, because it can’t be. It is a subjective judgement. Hence we get the notion of “subjective truths”, or, as other people may refer to them as “your opinion”.

    The question, though: is a subjective truth still a truth or not? Is it right to call them “truths” at all, or should “true” only refer to objective matters.
    Other than asserting that there would be “no Truth to find” (and – again – I’m not sure why you’re capitalising the word unless you’re trying to make some distinction that you haven’t yet explained?) – can you argue for why not, other than through, perhaps, an a priori assumption?
    For this discussion, no, for reasons already given.
    If all you want is someone’s closed answer, and giving your answer to the same question, I guess that’s a conversation, but it’s not a discussion. Telling people your opinion isn’t a discussion. Asking someone there opinion is not a discussion.
    Well, you’ve at least started on the discussion side. Eventually.
    You haven’t really been asking the right questions, though. “Why?” is your friend. Not “Do you agree?” to which there is the obvious simple Yes/No response.
    Ah, yes, concentrate on the perceived “snark” rather than the content.

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    I didn’t answer because it is irrelevant. I get that you have an obsession with whether I’m upset or not, but, honestly, JamesR, it is utterly irrelevant. Why can you not see that?

    To get “more upset” requires being upset – which I guess in your fantasy I perhaps am. But whether we agree on something or not has no bearing on whether we agree or not, does it? Are you going to change your mind based on what I say to that question? If not, how is it relevant?

    And no, I haven’t answered the question, even implicitly. But I guess your little fantasy world will be what it is.
    Many would agree, and many would not. Some adhere to the simple idea of a Justified True Belief. If you believe something, have a justification, and it is true, then you didn’t just believe but you knew.
    I’d agree. But some philosophers may not. And that is not even a particularly nuanced example.
    I’m not sure this is in line with most philosophers on the matter. The correspondence theory of truth, for example, merely requires that the proposition corresponds with fact. If you’re wanting to go down the route of Identity being sufficient reason (the “it is true that X is Y because X is Y”) then you’re playing with triviality, and relegating “reason” to “it being what it is” etc.
    Agreed. But note here that you have separated the notion of reason, justification, knowledge, and truth. Is something only true if we know it is? If not, why do we need reasons or any justification for something to be true?
    Sure, all good comments. But, to many philosophers, whether the reasoning was mistaken is irrelevant.
    Do, because I think your thoughts on the matter need some disentangling, so that you can look at the elements independently, so that you can better understand where those elements may/should be linked etc.
    There will always be reasons for a state of affairs. Knowing what those reasons are is not necessary for a proposition to be true/false about that state of affairs. Knowledge, reasoning, justification, is simply not required for “X is Y” to be true or false. They would only needed as and when we want to talk about knowing whether “X is Y” is a true proposition or not.
  9. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Continued… 3

    Again, if you don’t know, why make a distinction between “truth” and “Truth”? Was it just an errant Capital letter?
    What does this have to do with why you distinguished between “truth” and “Truth”? You say you’re now “working through [why you did] it”, but that doesn’t bear any relevance to why you did it?

    You obviously intended there to be some distinction, even in your own mind at the time, so what was it?

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    You’re getting confused about what you’re actually responding to: me asking you why you made a distinction between “truth” and “Truth”. Explaining why you started this thread is not a meaningful answer.
    You did something. You made a distinction between “truth” and “Truth”, and now you’re saying you don’t have an answer yet as to why you did that? Is it something you normally do, just throw in capital letters?
    Let me break it down for you:

    You: “Good point. Excise the word "just" from my previous statement. I'm happy to go with that.”

    This turned your referenced statement to: “But capital 't' Truth is not just about belief. It's about justification.”

    Hence I asked: “So now you're saying that truth is not about belief. …. So X believing that W is beautiful no way depends on their belief?”

    Given that we had been talking about the propositions along the lines of “X is beautiful” and “W believes X is beautiful”, I’d have thought my question at the end was obvious, no?

    Note that this is also where you refernced the distinction between “truth” and “Truth” (see above) that you now can’t seem to explain further than “I don’t have all the answers yet).
    Once again with the notion of rage, JamesR. It’s tiring, pathetic, and just, well, wrong. But, as I’ve said before, if it makes you feel better then, sure, whateve, you keep asserting as much and I’ll keep wasting my time laughing at you and telling you you’re wrong.
    No, I’m not, JamesR. Accept that or don’t. Your view is irrelevant, and your continuing to assert it is irrelevant. But, sure, whatever.
    Do you think you’ve been stupid, dishonest, or pathetic? You tell me. Just so we’re clear.
    Oh, maybe your reason for extending the off-topic matter was to learn something more about autism yourself? Hope I could help in some small way on that. If not, I’m not really sure what else you were aiming to achieve.
    I’ve called you stupid? Where???

    Honestly, JamesR, what was there for me to regret in telling Seattle that autism is on a spectrum from almost imperceptible to the type that we are more commonly aware of? You tell me what, in that, there is for me to regret?

    Now you’re calling me a bigot for explaining that autism is on a spectrum?? And for telling him that whether someone suffers from the condition is irrelevant to what they say.
    Seriously, JamesR, go and reread the exchange, see where you butted in, your nonsense of a post, and my reply to it. Then come back here and apologise to me, if you have the balls to do so.
    No, JamesR, shame on you for being so completely wide of the mark that it is laughable, and shame on you for trying to double-down on your mistake, and drag your error into subsequent posts.

    So, reread that exchange and then post a public apology in this thread, please. It is no more than is due given your incompetent reading of the situation.
  10. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    @ James - Reading between the lines, did you start this thread because of the interactions you've been having in the UAP thread? You can create a thread for any reason you like, but just wondering.
  11. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    Let's be clear, here, James: When a racist offends people by saying something offensively racist, and someone else says, "Fuck you, racist", your sympathies are with the racist.¹ Been that way for years.

    Nonetheless, your take on it is certainly interesting, at least. You have a certain sympathy for most people, and maybe "empathy" is a better word? Tell me, James, did you say that because you thought it sounded good, because it's nearly a change of subject.

    When the proverbial rubber hits the road, that's when the excuses come out; your "sympathy for most people" becomes a separate question. Think of it this way, James: These years later, you would appear to prefer we believe you still just don't get it.²

    But here's the thing: My context, not yours, would be the closer one to offending you; your pretense of indignance does not make sense. Sympathizing with Trump supporters is the most accusatory part of that, but it's also true and relevant to what I was telling Sarkus. And if we skip ahead to this part—

    —look, James, maybe it would help if you could explain what part of telling Sarkus to not try to get out in front of you, the inadvisability of presuming to know where you are going, to wait and see where you goes with it, bothers you so much. And if that part isn't really what offends you, perhaps you might consider reading the portion that does accordingly:

    Well, yeah, that one is actually going on, and you are, to some degree, already answered³. The "insinuations and veiled accusations" you refer to actually suggest to Sarkus an application of what you said in this thread to his discussion with you in that other. Still, in terms of trying to get out in front of you, he can reasonably expect that you will either apply it to the relativism question or not according to your inclination; that is, there isn't really much point in trying to get out in front of you.

    Compared to the time I told Arf↗ you and he were discussing different things, my advice to Sarkus is rather bland. I didn't even use the word bogus, or suggest artifice, for instance. Moreover, sure, there's the record of you showing particular sympathy to Trump supporters, but even that has its place compared to Sarkus projecting↑ you sought to bash people you've shown such sympathies. And, as it goes, the point remains that you could, indeed, close a gap in your relativist framework in the discussion about subjective and objective morality. Which you will get around to doing, or not, as such, whenever you are so inclined.

    Left as such, that would be all it is: The meta-commentary communicated its point, and Sarkus will react, respond, adjust, whatever else, or not, as such, whenever he is so inclined. And if it happens↑ that he is still making things too complicated⁴, that would just be so meta.


    ¹ See November, 2016↗; these years later, it's still relevant, as such, one of two related examples recalled last year↗.

    ²See, February, 2021↗: "You were serious about wanting 'proper scientific arguments' for white supremacism, then?" you wondered, as a setup, and then delivered your punch line: "I assumed that was you being sarcastic." Or, alternately, we are supposed to believe that after so long, you still don't get it. Either way, it's kind of hard to believe that, after five years, at least, you really thought that was the problem. (See also, Internal Memoranda #2791, August, 2016.)

    ³ See, "Is morality subjective or objective?", #104-107↗.

    ⁴ There are simpler ulterior motives, if he needs one.​
  12. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    You have asked that I publically apologise to you. This is that apology.

    I did not call you a bigot. However, since it seems you read my post that way and because it was not unfair of you to read it that way, I apologise for not communicating more clearly.

    You asked:
    This was in reference to the earlier exchange you, Seattle and myself had on the subject of autism, which Seattle started by accusing Tiassa of being autistic. To be clear, again, in my opinion, Seattle regards "autistic" as an insult that he can throw at people - an accusation that they are lesser than him because they have a "disorder". I took issue with that.

    In reply to your post, quoted here, I wrote:
    In writing that, I was considering the full context of that exchange about autism, not just your contributions. I think that Seattle's posts on that topic are regrettable. I still do not know your opinion about Seattle's posts, or the appropriateness of his comments. You have not, as far as I can tell, publically expressed any concerns about Seattle's comments or opinions on autism.

    It is my opinion that Seattle is a bigot when it comes to autism; that is, he is intolerant towards people with autism and he believes that autism makes a person lesser (than him).

    I think it would be useful for you to post your own position on these matters, for clarity.

    I also wrote:
    I was wrong to write "Either way..." and I apologise.

    Clearly, it will only reflect poorly on your character if it turns out that you share Seattle's bigoted opinions on autism. If you do not, that could only put your personal character in a positive light.

    I stand by my opinion that you could have acted more morally in that exchange. It is important to call out bigotry and intolerance for what it is. Staying silent is a less moral choice. However, I also appreciate that in the context of my comments from immediately before that one, that particular comment reads like me sticking the boot in about your views on autism, which I do not know. I also apologise for my lack of specificity, there.

    You wrote:
    I disagree. I think that Seattle, first and foremost, should be regretting his posts. I am not the only one. What do you think?

    I would also like to respond to a couple of additional points you raised in your most recent reply to me.
    It is not very polite to say that people who are on the autism spectrum "suffer from the condition". On the whole, I think you'd find, if you asked then, that they do not describe themselves as "suffering" from a "condition". It could be construed as patronising if you refer to autism that way (and a similar thing goes for other disabilities).
    I can't tell if you think the entire content of my post was "nonsense", or just parts pertaining to you. I hope it's the latter and not the former.
    It's not about balls. It's about doing the right thing. I hope you understand the difference.

    I have no problem with admitting my mistakes and taking responsibility.
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2022
  13. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Nice apology.

    I'll keep this brief. I'm not a bigot. You manufactured the part about me thinking I'm better than someone and all the rest of your rant.

    You always seem surprised when Tiassa reacts in a certain manner toward you when it's actually very common place and predictable. I mentioned that was a trait of autism. You asked who I was referring to. I told you.

    Sarkus added that autism is a spectrum, which I already know and that you can't tell if someone is autistic by how they communicate (I'm paraphrasing Sarkus here, maybe not accurately?). I disagree somewhat there.

    "Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability caused by differences in the brain. People with ASD often have problems with social communication and interaction, and restricted or repetitive behaviors or interests." (from the CDC site).

    I don't know if you just like drama, to be the center of attention or what but it is what it is I guess.
  14. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    You posted some interesting questions and some useful information in your replies above. To be clear, I found the following worthy of comment, among other parts:
    Unfortunately, these things that we could have had an interesting discussion about were swamped by patronising insults and other rage-fueled personal attacks, like these:
    So, to summarise your thoughts on me:

    1. I have a significantly overinflated sense of my own ability.
    2. It is typical for me to get things hilariously wrong.
    3. I am unable to simply respond to comments and not to the person behind them.
    4. I haven't even tried.
    5. I come up with gumph.
    6. I try to bash people before any discussion has begun.
    7. It makes me feel better to think that you're in a rage, when actually you're perfectly calm and rational and are laughing at me.
    8. So far, what I've said is irrelevant and wrong.
    9. If I think you're in my face, that's my fault because I'm sitting too close to my monitor.
    10. I'm dishonest.
    11. I'm probably unable to put my current thinking down.
    12. I'm under the delusion that you're upset, when you're genuinely laughing as you respond.
    13. Whatever else I put in my posts, I'm still talking about straw men.
    14. My insinuating that you're angry is tiresome, pathetic and frustrating to deal with [but you're still laughing about it - go figure!]
    15. Even simple explanations go over my head.
    16. I'm oblivious to explanations that have been given.
    17. I don't ask the right questions.
    18. I'm a fantasist in a little fantasy world.
    19. I'm confused about what I'm responding to.
    20. My view is irrelevant and my continuing to assert it is irrelevant.
    21. I am incompetent at reading situations.

    With all these flaws, it's a wonder you would even consider lowering your majestic self off your throne long enough to glance my way, let along wanting to have a discussion with me.

    From my end, I no longer have any desire to have a discussion with you. A respectful discussion with you seems well nigh impossible. Maybe when the rage settles, you and I will talk again.

    I'm out.
  15. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    I wasn't inspired to start this thread by anything in the UAP thread, although there are some thematic links between stuff I have posted there and stuff I thought might make for some interesting discussion here.

    Actually, when I posted this thread, things were quiet on the forum. I don't start threads very often, but I wanted to post something that I thought might engage some people, something I also found interesting.

    I already posted earlier on where the idea came from: I saw an interview in which a guy was asked to respond to the statements in the OP (and others), and his responses were quite different from mine. I thought that was interesting. I thought it would be interesting to find out how people here would respond.

    It turns out that people here mostly wanted to turn my thread into an ad hominem slug fest.

    And we wonder why this forum isn't attracting a lot of new members.
  16. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    You shouldn't tell hateful lies, Tiassa.

    Also, you just couldn't stop yourself from jumping into an already overheated exchange to try to put in a boot of your own, could you? Shame on you!
    Would that be a great evil in your book? Showing sympathy with people? Having empathy?

    My views on US politics are on the record on this forum. You shouldn't pretend to be unaware of them. You shouldn't tell lies about them. I gave my views on Trump and Trumpism even before he was elected President. They were not sympathetic.

    If you want to attack Trump supporters, there are some right here. You'd do better off taking them to task than trying to attack an Australian citizen who, if he lived in the United States, wouldn't come within cooee of voting Republican.

    You'd probably be less stressed if you could work out who your political allies are. You could also avoid losing sleep and wasting energy in railing against those who, for the most part, agree with your politics. Try to work out who you should really be fighting. Help your country. Stop the infighting.
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2022
  17. O. W. Grant Registered Senior Member

    One can't say who's right who's wrong. One can see who's in power.
  18. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Yes, you did. You wrote: "Maybe Seattle convinced you to join with him in his bigotry."
    While this states that you consider Seattle a bigot, you are here questioning what led me to (what you consider to be) my bigotry. I.e. was it Seattle that convinced me... or something else. But there is no doubt that you did call me a bigot.
    As such, your apology, thus far, is not worth the time and effort you have taken, because you are refusing to admit what you did.

    So now it's my fault for correctly reading what you actually said.
    No, you clearly communicated that you think I'm a bigot.

    For fuck's sake, JamesR, how ridiculous do you intend to get?
    Are you really not able to say: "Apologies, you are correct, I did inadvertently call you a bigot in the words I wrote, but I assure you that I do not think you a bigot and I will try to be more precise in my language in future"... or words like that, instead of these pathetic squirrelly attempts to try to save face.
    Then have a go at Seattle, not me! You called me a bigot, so far not really apologised for, and now you're saying that when you have issue with one person it's okay to take issue with everyone?? Yeah, nice apology so far.
    No, you said that it's a shame I - not Seattle - I don't regret anything. I'm asking you again: what is there for me to regret in what I wrote to Seattle, or what I subsquently wrote to you?
    If you're going to apologise for what you've done then do so! So far you haven't apologised for calling me a bigot, and you haven't apologised for saying that I (not Seattle) should regret what I wrote.

    The "full context" that resulted, in the above sentence, in accusing me of bigotry. An accusation you don't recognise despite the clear meaning of the words.
    So, what was there for me to regret, either in the exchanges between myself and Seattle, or in my exchange to you? Should I be regretful of what someone else writes and your view thereof?? No, of course not.
    And still no actual meaningful apology from you.

    That's between you and Seattle. Here's a clue: I am not Seattle. If you want to call him a bigot, that's for you to do. But you called me a bigot. You said I should regret what I wrote. You still haven't either explained what I should regret, or apologised for calling me a bigot. You've apologised for not calling me a bigot.
    Yeah, as far as apologies go, this one's a doozy!
    I think I was quite clear in the one post you seemed to take issue with. So let me repeat it, so that you can see again how ridiculous your accusation of my bigotry is, and how ridiculous it is that you think I should regret anything:
    "Note that autism is a spectrum, ranging from mild and almost imperceptible, to the level of autism that you read most often about. I am almost certain that several members of this community are somewhere on this spectrum. But... so what?
    Whether someone suffers from a condition or not, deal with what they say, and if you struggle to understand them, ask them to explain.

    Now, what within that should I regret? Where is my bigotry shining through, JamesR?
    You say you have not called me a bigot, but your words did. You have not apologised for actually calling me a bigot, you have merely apologised for not being clear in your words. Like a house that collapses and kills people, you, the builder, have only apologised for not building the house better. Spot how it's not really an apology for what matters?
    And an apology for saying that I should regret something... where is that?
    Then have those issues and that discussion with him. Don't tar me with that same brush, as you have quite clearly done, and then no actually apologise for doing so.
    See above. It was quite clear then, and it is quite clear now.
    You can't really help yourself, can you. When a simple apology would have sufficed you try every way you can to make excuses for what you wrote. And it comes across as pathetic, insincere, and just... whatever.
    I think my first comment did do: it made a point of saying "so what" if they have autism. But, hey, you completely overreacted to that comment, have since assumed I was as biogotted as you think Seattle is, and still haven't apologised for doing so.
    Right, so now you're not apologising for what you did, but the way you did it? So it's not accusing me of bigotry but the way you accused me?

    I was referring to between you and me.
    I do not regret anything about those posts I made on the matter. Do you?
    How many autistic people do you know? From personal experience, the ones I have known are quite happy to refer to themselves as suffering from the condition. Their lives are, on the whole, not easy. They do suffer, and the ones I know are more than happy for people to know that it is a problem. They may be more comfortable with being labelled autistic, and prefer that you do, but it is not impolite to refer to them as suffering from autism until they ask you not to. So please don't try to lecture me.
    I tend not to read stuff directed at other people when what they've addressed to me in the same post is nonsense.
    Well, have the balls to do the right thing, because at the moment you clearly haven't. Half-apologies, weaseling excuses and basically a dog's dinner of what should have been reasonably straightforward admission of guilt and apology.

    Unfortunately any subsequent attempt at apology will come across as even more insincere.

    If it helps, I really didn't expect anything else from you than this pitiful effort of yours. So you're living up to expectation.

    Yeah, this "apology" of yours really shows that.

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  19. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    More fallacious thinking, JamesR, unfortunately. You're listing a number of these out of context and think I'm applying them to your entire character, rather than to the specific responses at that time. Not all. I mean, you do have a significantly overinflated sense of your own ability, and you are deluded that you think I'm upset (although you calling me a bigot did rile, somewhat). But the rest, yeah, you've deliberately taken specifics and made them general (which speaks to no. 10, btw).
    Ah, well.
    I'm not royalty, and while I like my chair, it's not really sufficiently ornate to be a throne. But, yeah, it is a wonder, isn't it. But, still, here I am. Go figure.
    I don't think you ever did, to be honest. You may make allusions to it, but, nah.

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    Still thinking I'm raging. Ah, well. Whatever it takes for you to ignore what people have to say.
    Thanks for telling me, when really you could have... you know... not posted.
  20. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 72 years oldl Valued Senior Member

    What is Truth? = Title of thread

    Bickering activity = what is being posted

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    Yazata and DaveC426913 like this.
  21. parmalee peripatetic artisan Valued Senior Member

    Hmmm. Yet in a thread essentially about murderous cops and how some people--Blacks, in particular--have damn good reason to be terrified of cops and are understandably reluctant to ever seek assistance from cops, you post this:

    What was that term you were employing earlier? Empathy, that's right.

    Edit: Image posted is irrelevant, obviously, just couldn't figure out how to delete it.

    Attached Files:

  22. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Sometimes, our intentions don’t always turn out how we hoped. Why do you think this thread went in a negative direction? (if you had to guess)

    I’ll say that Sarkus is one of the most diplomatic members, here. No one’s perfect, but I’m thinking you accusing him of bigotry wasn’t going to bring a tempered response. I’ve never seen Sarkus “full of rage,” even in this thread. You’re pretty even keeled James, but for what it’s worth, I think you’re off the mark on that assessment.

    I’m always intrigued by what “truth” means to others, and while we’re all unique, we share more common ground than we sometimes may be willing to admit. These “lines in the sand” don’t make much sense to me.
  23. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    Exactly. Perhaps it is time for people to stop beating on JamesR. (I don't like it when people beat on MR, and I don't like it any more when the target of the bullying is JamesR. (Who isn't a bad guy, though don't tell him I said that.) Leave our R's alone!

    Given as how everyone seems to be accusing everyone else of being a "bigot", which is just a woke-speak for "piece of shit", perhaps somebody might want to answer this:

    Is there any factual truth to moral propositions?

    How can the idea of objective moral truths be made consistent with a correspondence theory of truth and fit into a physicalist sort of "scientific" realism?
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2022
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