Difference between revisions of "Talk:Essay:Liberal Intellectualism"

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(Motivation: 90/10 rule)
(Motivation: point-by-point reply)
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: OldFaithful, the point of the 90/10 [[rule]] is to ensure some productive activity in addition to discussion.  As you can see, there are many other entries here (over 16,000) that we can all improve while we continue this discussion.  Thanks much and we do welcome you.--[[User:Aschlafly|Aschlafly]] 16:07, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
 
: OldFaithful, the point of the 90/10 [[rule]] is to ensure some productive activity in addition to discussion.  As you can see, there are many other entries here (over 16,000) that we can all improve while we continue this discussion.  Thanks much and we do welcome you.--[[User:Aschlafly|Aschlafly]] 16:07, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
 +
 +
In reply to your list above:
 +
 +
    * Cutting taxes increases Government revenue
 +
 +
Right, assuming current levels of taxation.  See [[Laffer Curve]].
 +
 +
    * Increased gun ownership helps towards a safer society
 +
 +
Right.  No one seriously disputes this.  See [[John Lott]].
 +
 +
    * Abortion harms health
 +
 +
Right.  No one seriously disputes this, just as no one credibly denies that childbirth is good for health.
 +
 +
    * In war, ceasefires have no useful effect
 +
 +
True when faced with a determined enemy, like the [[communist]] North Vietnamese.
 +
 +
    * Arms limitation treaties have no useful effect
 +
 +
True when faced with a [[deceit]]ful enemy, like the [[communist]] [[Soviet Union]].
 +
 +
    * Discrimination cannot be fully quantified by viewing outcomes only
 +
 +
Obviously true.
 +
 +
    * Genders are not equal
 +
 +
Obviously true.
 +
 +
    * African Americans are more deserving of civil rights than homosexuals
 +
 +
Right, and many African Americans are rightly offended by [[liberal]] attempts to analogize the two.
 +
 +
    * The Government is not fully capable of reducing poverty
 +
 +
Obviously true.  Even [[Jesus]] observed that there will unfortunately always be poverty.
 +
 +
--[[User:Aschlafly|Aschlafly]] 16:35, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Revision as of 14:35, 6 September 2007

Question

Examples of not-quite-the-best intellectual promoters of liberal arguments

Who would you say are the best intellectual promoters of liberal arguments? And who would you say are real, rather than pseudo, intellectuals?

Pachyderm 06:32, 5 September 2007 (EDT)

I'll clarify. What that means is "not-quite-intellectual". Godspeed.--Aschlafly 09:44, 5 September 2007 (EDT)

Achievements

I know that this is an essay, and it reflects your personal opinion, which you are of course entitled to. I'm confused about why you say that the people on your list are "short on intellectual achievements." You list, in order,

  • A U.S. Senator/Presidential candidate
  • A U.S. Senator/Vice President/Presidential candidate/lecturer
  • A Governor/President of the United States
  • An Oxford faculty member/influential scientist
  • A Harvard faculty member/influential scientist/author
  • A Harvard Law faculty member/influential expert on constitutional law
  • A U.S. Secretary of Defense/President of World Bank
  • A Nobel laureate/U.S. Secretary of State/major player in US foreign policy for a decade
  • A successful theoretical physicist who led the effort to develop the most important weapon in world history
  • A popular comedian and talk show host (not sure who seriously considers Jon Stewart an intellectual per se, but he does provide social commentary, so I'll give you a point for this one)
  • An M.I.T. faculty member/successful philosopher, author
  • A successful economist who was given the title of Baron for his work

Most people would probably call that a pretty impressive list of achievements for "wannabes or pseudo-intellectuals." While I understand that you don't agree with a lot of those men, it doesn't mean that they haven't accomplished anything. Arguments against their ideologies would be more effective if they were made without trying to blow off their achievements as insignificant.--Bayes 23:26, 5 September 2007 (EDT)

This essay tells us more about the author than it does about the subject. Is ad hominemism not a Liberal activity?
Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.
And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished these words, the multitudes were astonished at his teaching:
for he taught them as one having authority, and not as their scribes.
(Matthew 7)
Godspeed JSmith 08:27, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
The above liberal protesteth too much to the insight of this essay.
Bayes illustrates the liberal love of bureaucracy and meaningless "achievements". He does not list a true intellectual accomplishment. Nothing in his list advanced knowledge or provided any meaningful benefit to others. Instead, as in the Wizard of Oz, Bayes attaches great significance to honors awarded by other liberals. Try to find a true intellectual achievement by any of the listed liberals. Can't be done, so they strive for acclaim by fellow liberals instead.
JSmith, you win the prize for playing the hypocrite card, which is so overused by liberals. You even cite the Bible. Are you a real devotee to the Bible???
Thanks, you gave me good fodder to add to the liberal style entry.--Aschlafly 09:21, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Shakespearian references aside, let me try to understand your reasoning. You say that receiving Nobel Prizes, becoming widely recognized in an academic field, or becoming President of the United States does not represent an intellectual achievement. You then say that nothing on the list above advanced knowledge or provided meaningful benefit. That position is simply absurd. By your standards, Reagan, Teller, and the Founding Fathers aren't intellectuals either. Then, when I point out your untenable position, you attack me for my so-called "love of bureaucracy" and compare my opinions to the Wizard of Oz story.

Your response says more than you wanted it to. This essay really is a demonstration of the ad hominem fallacy; you selectively choose people you disagree with, then claim that they're not "real" intellectuals, and so, of course, they must be wrong. It's only a rephrasing of "These people are stupid, so they're wrong." You then choose to mock me and JSmith on this page, again showing your tendency to use personal attacks.

What is an example of what you would consider a "true" intellectual achievement? Do all "true" intellectuals also happen to be conservatives? Can any liberal hope to be a "true" intellectual?--Bayes 11:22, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Bayes, you continue to protesteth too much. What constitutes a true intellectual achievement is obvious: an insight, a remarkable writing or speech, an idea, an invention, a proof, a concept, an advance in knowledge, etc. Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative, for example, or his "tear down this wall" speech. Teller's H-Bomb. The Founding Father's U.S. Constitution. The liberal obsession with meaningless bureaucratic honors, often awarded by fellow liberals, is baffling, a silly as the awards given in the Wizard of Oz.--Aschlafly 12:25, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Ok, so those are examples of what you consider to be intellectual achievements. I agree. Now, why do you consider Teller's role in hydrogen bomb development an achievement, but Oppenheimer's role in fission bomb development is not? I see you've added to the essay, and you claim that Oppenheimer isn't an intellectual because he didn't win a Nobel Prize in physics. Tell me, how many Nobel Prizes did Teller, one of your examples of intellectuals, win? I'll also point out that Kissinger DID win a Nobel Prize, and yet he appears on this list. You seem to want it both ways--you are trying to claim Oppenheimer is not an intellectual because he doesn't have a Nobel Prize, but then you say that any prize that was actually awarded is meaningless because it was awarded by "liberals."

Your remarks about others on the list are just as dubious in their relevance. Reagan was an actor before he entered politics; does that diminish his later intellectual accomplishments? I don't think so. Similarly, the disparaging "you got bad grades in college, so you can't accomplish anything worthwhile" comments next to some of the names are not appropriate.

I'd still like to hear your answer to this question: Can anyone whom you label as "liberal" be a "true" intellectual?--Bayes 14:25, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Add-on: I also don't see how being a privileged youth disqualifies one from being an intellectual. The majority of the scientific establishment was at one time composed of the nobility.--Bayes 14:55, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Motivation

An interesting essay Mr.Schlafly. I'm curious to know your postion on the corollary of your listed arguments, i.e., do you believe that:

  • Cutting taxes increases Government revenue
  • Increased gun ownership assures a safer society
  • Women should give birth to every baby conceived
  • Wars should be fought until a combatant is completely destroyed, without pause for negotiation
  • The best thing for humanity would be to increase the worldwide supply of armaments ad infinitum
  • Discrimination cannot be quantified
  • Women are inferior to men
  • Homosexuals deserve no freedoms
  • The Government should make no attempt to reduce poverty

OldFaithful 13:45, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

After your first two, your "corollaries" are actually severe distortions of the points in the entry.--Aschlafly 13:51, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Ok, let me try another 'corollarization', if you'll pardon the concoction! Please bear with me, I am not interested in twisting your words, merely clarifying your position.

  • Cutting taxes increases Government revenue
  • Increased gun ownership assures a safer society
  • Abortion harms health
  • Ceasefires are pointless
  • Arms limitation treaties are pointless
  • Discrimination cannot be quantified by viewing outcomes
  • Genders are not equal
  • African Americans are more deserving of civil rights than homosexuals
  • The Government should make no further attempt to reduce poverty

Is this better? OldFaithful 14:14, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Your "corollarization" is still twisted, of course, particularly on points 2 ("assures"), 4-5 ("are pointless"), 6 ("cannot be quantified"), and 9 ("no further attempt"). But you're right with point 1, 3 and 7-8, and increased gun ownership does decrease crime, including violent crime.--Aschlafly 14:21, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

OK, here's another try - and thanks for your pointers.

  • Cutting taxes increases Government revenue
  • Increased gun ownership helps towards a safer society
  • Abortion harms health
  • In war, ceasefires have no useful effect
  • Arms limitation treaties have no useful effect
  • Discrimination cannot be fully quantified by viewing outcomes only
  • Genders are not equal
  • African Americans are more deserving of civil rights than homosexuals
  • The Government is not fully capable of reducing poverty

I'm having a hard time writing corollaries of the ceasefire, arms treaty, and poverty topics, so please forgive me as I clumsily try and get closer to your position. OldFaithful 14:31, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Mr.Schalfly, a user by the name of 'TK' has alerted me to your 90/10 rule. However, I pointed out that I obviously cannot contribute to your essay, since it is completely yours. Should I stop discussing your essay? I should point out that what I was hoping to do was clarify the corollaries to your points so that I could write an essay entitled Conservative Intellectualism, which would then state clearly defined positions held by conservative intellectuals. I can't write that article until we agree on the definitions, obviously. Should I listen to TK and stop, or do you wish me to continue on my path? It is your essay, and, I believe, your site, so I will abide by whatever you say. OldFaithful 15:26, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

  • Do not try to insert deceit here, OldFaithful. I alerted as well as welcomed you. Most of us manage to do both kinds of posts, and I am sure after a while, you will be better able to multi-task as well! Carry on. --şŷŝôρ-₮KṢρёаќǃ 15:41, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Oh I'm not trying to use deceit, I can assure you. I'm only interested in clarifying - to the agreement of Mr.Schlafly - the position this essay takes. Defining the corollary of an argument is usually a very good way to define the argument itself, I find. Thanks for your understanding, TK. OldFaithful 15:44, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

OldFaithful, the point of the 90/10 rule is to ensure some productive activity in addition to discussion. As you can see, there are many other entries here (over 16,000) that we can all improve while we continue this discussion. Thanks much and we do welcome you.--Aschlafly 16:07, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

In reply to your list above:

   * Cutting taxes increases Government revenue

Right, assuming current levels of taxation. See Laffer Curve.

   * Increased gun ownership helps towards a safer society

Right. No one seriously disputes this. See John Lott.

   * Abortion harms health

Right. No one seriously disputes this, just as no one credibly denies that childbirth is good for health.

   * In war, ceasefires have no useful effect

True when faced with a determined enemy, like the communist North Vietnamese.

   * Arms limitation treaties have no useful effect

True when faced with a deceitful enemy, like the communist Soviet Union.

   * Discrimination cannot be fully quantified by viewing outcomes only

Obviously true.

   * Genders are not equal

Obviously true.

   * African Americans are more deserving of civil rights than homosexuals

Right, and many African Americans are rightly offended by liberal attempts to analogize the two.

   * The Government is not fully capable of reducing poverty 

Obviously true. Even Jesus observed that there will unfortunately always be poverty.

--Aschlafly 16:35, 6 September 2007 (EDT)