Re: That was science

Posted by Dale on Feb 12, 2002 at 18:16 (

Re: That was science (mara)

wouldn't a thinking person figure that if somebody puts their opinion in print it is more likely to be evaluated than if somebody wrotes that something is 'wrong' ?

No. Definitely not. When someone says they disagree I read “well, I don’t know but I think maybe…” I’m not as impressed by someone who doesn’t really know as by someone who states “This is the way it is.” You can’t trust the former and you can’t hold them to supporting their position because they don’t have a position. The latter is either right or wrong and you can press for the foundation of their beliefs. If they have a foundation you can probe its strength. If they don’t you can ignore their statement. In other words, tell me what you believe, not what you think.

Welcome to the real world. I learned in a psychology experiment 30 years ago (you took psychology, didn’t you? You were a lab rat, weren’t you?) that no two people have the same meaning for any word. If I say “red” it means something different to me than it does to you and it means something different to everyone reading this. In most cases the differences are small enough that we can ignore them but in other cases we end up going to war over them. In this case I believe you think “I disagree” is just a more polite way of saying “I think you don’t understand what I do.” I think “I disagree” (without substantial further explanation) means “I don’t agree but I’m not sure why.” You think “Your wrong.” Is just rude while I think it is an honest attempt to cut to the chase. To me “Your wrong” is just a prelude to an explanation of why. “I disagree” means you can’t or at least aren’t going to try to explain. If you DO explain right after “I disagree” then the phrase is meaningless. With an explanation showing why, obviously you would disagree.

If you want “I disagree” you need to try an Oxygene chatroom. This is a science forum. It should be full of hard science which means hard statements of fact. We have plenty of room for disagreements but they need to start with explanations of why positions are wrong.

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