Yeah that's why I wrote a bit more about it. There is a difference between proper debates and arguments,
No there isn't.
Originally Posted by Synapse
Its like my dad and the mechanic repairing his car...
No it's not.
Originally Posted by Synapse
That's just silly talk. Your debating conversation style is fine.
No, it's annoying.
Originally Posted by Biaxident
Because they feel so powerless in their real life, that getting on the forum and acting like a complete asshole is a form of stress relief.
...Or, they are just total asshats, 24/7 365.
Wrong, they can be both.
Originally Posted by Orangey
The purpose of eristic debate is, of course, rhetorical, and I think that's what everyone here takes umbrage with (since we live in a culture that views persuasion as inauthentic, and therefore running counter to good moral principles.) Yes, the aim of each participant in eristic is to deploy persuasive stratagems in such a way as to defeat an opponent and win the assent of a public regardless of the truth of the propositions being argued. While that may sound ignoble to those of us with high-minded ideals about discovering "truth" through discussion (which is in fact hypocritical), the fact remains that "truth," especially in matters not associated with pure mathematics or logic (i.e., anything that could be debated about), is an elusive and indeterminate thing. In any given debate neither the participants nor the audience have any final proof for the logical truth of their propositions, and so it is their duty to strive to give their side a running chance and to use all tactics at their disposal to persuade the audience of the greater likelihood of their propositions.
Even if a debater is convinced by his interlocutor, at that moment, that his own propositions are false, he must still battle for his own side because of the chance (however small he may think it) that his propositions are actually true (and he just hasn't thought of a clever way of arguing it.) He/she would certainly not want to discard a proposition due to momentary setback only later to discover that he was right all along. There is also the benefit that he might stumble, in the process of arguing, upon better ways to argue for his own side. The point is that, when talking about subjects that cannot be proved through some sort of logical or mathematical algorithm, "truth" is nothing more than rhetoric anyway (no matter how much we may wish that this isn't the case.) Thus, we must use what means of determining the better propositions that we have (i.e., the assent of a public), and that takes a certain skill which is cultivated through the practice of eristic debate.
I like to debate people, but I don't like arguing very much. No one walks away happy and the quality and tone of conversation becomes low, angry and petty. Unpleasantly emotional.
It can be hard to keep a debate from becoming a mud-slinging match: both parties have to sort of stay away from that mentality, and even then people can read things that aren't there into innocuous replies. I think it's happened to most of us.
That's interesting, Victor, cuz, on my list of people who contribute positively to this forum, you do not rank all that high.
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