01 July 2005

High Minded Gibberish

It can be found here. Online debates/arguments/discussions are really nothing more than elaborate 'he said/she said' arguments. Someone who's taken basic philosophy can question anything in a manner that has a superficial substantiality to it. Lawyers specialize in this sort of nonsense.

If someone wants to agree with you, they will. If they don't, they won't. Even citing original sources won't convince someone that you're right if they don't want to believe it. If they do, then you're just preaching to the choir. The only time you'll make a difference is if someone hasn't already made up their mind, or has seen something somewhere else that is making them question their beliefs.

The support of the Kelo land seizure decision by Daily Kos was met with a lot of skepticism by regulars there, which means that many of them will be forced into question their and Kos' views of government involvement in economic development, property ownership, etc. For those who think it's a tool for WalMart, they'll have to change either their opposition to WalMart, or their opposition to private property rights in general. If a business can't own land to operate on, how can a poor person own land to live on? Views on one relate to views on the other, and this conflict will create a search for answers, which in turn engenders more openmindedness than a thousand diatribes on ideological tolerance.

An online argument, polite or not, means nothing if the reader doesn't want it to. Calling someone an assmuncher doesn't have an impact on your evidence or logic, and neither does saying you respectfully disagree. The horse can be led to water, but whether to drink or not is a decision only it can make.

Goe, distracted.

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