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

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This article is a midget trying to pull down giants. [[User:Mandrew|Mandrew]] 18:38, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
 
This article is a midget trying to pull down giants. [[User:Mandrew|Mandrew]] 18:38, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
 +
"Andy is a privileged, ignorant man-child" [[User:Mandrew|Mandrew]] 18:41, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
  
 
===real intellectuals===
 
===real intellectuals===
 
i think it would be helpful for this discussion if we had another essay about real intellecuals. liberal, conservative, or moderate. there are a few examples given on this page, but i think more might answer questions about who is included and who isn't. the founding fathers are a good example. i would be against people being included just for being well known conservatives. i admire much about george w bush, for example, but i wouldn't call him an "intellectual". he didn't run as one, and we didn't elect him for that. [[User:AuH2O|AuH2O]]
 
i think it would be helpful for this discussion if we had another essay about real intellecuals. liberal, conservative, or moderate. there are a few examples given on this page, but i think more might answer questions about who is included and who isn't. the founding fathers are a good example. i would be against people being included just for being well known conservatives. i admire much about george w bush, for example, but i wouldn't call him an "intellectual". he didn't run as one, and we didn't elect him for that. [[User:AuH2O|AuH2O]]

Revision as of 16:41, 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, since they were the people with the time and money for such pursuits. The merit of any body of knowledge is not dependent on the personal circumstances of its discoverer.--Bayes 14:55, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
If you think the liberals on the list achieved something intellectually, then just tell us what that was. Winning a gold star from a fellow liberal doesn't cut it. Instead, this group is notable for being intellectual wannabees, such as claiming credit for the internet or plagiarizing or self-promotion.--Aschlafly 17:17, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
Have you read the account on Snopes about what was actually said with respect to Al Gore and the Internet?[1] --Rutm 17:21, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
I don't have to. I remember reading the transcript, and I think I even saw the interview at the time. Gore tried to take credit for the internet. I didn't say that Gore claimed to have invented the internet.--Aschlafly 18:19, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

So you reserve license to publicly degrade others, and then give me the task of doing your research for you? You are the author of this essay, in which you essentially call your political opponents stupid and overrated. The burden of proof is on YOU to defend your claims and refute the achievements of these respected people, since YOU are making those statements. So far, your justifications have been along the lines of "his parents had money" and "he got bad grades in college." Did you know Clinton was a Rhodes scholar?

In any case, I've already provided an example: Oppenheimer led the effort to develop the atomic bomb. You credit Teller for H-bomb work, but not Oppenheimer for A-bomb work. How do you justify that position?

I would still like to know: Can someone be both "liberal" and an "intellectual"?--Bayes 17:39, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

Bayes, you continue to cite liberal awards, like "Rhodes scholar." You don't seem to grasp the point here, or you don't want to. I'm talking about true intellectual achievement, not resume building stuff.
Someone should do an article on Heather Wilson, which includes her past achievements. --Rutm 18:41, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
Teller did real physics. Oppenheimer was the manager at Los Alamos who made sure people got their mail and had a room to stay in. Please attempt to understand the difference.
Your question about whether someone can be liberal and a true intellectual is beyond the scope of this essay. It's a rare combination at best.--Aschlafly 18:19, 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. --şŷ�?ô�?-₮KṢ�?ёаќǃ 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)

Response

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.

While it is obvious that the genders are not the same, what are the implications of this statement? Should the 19th amendment be undone? Is unequal pay for the same work fair? What other implications that I'm not familiar with are there? --Rutm 16:55, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
If that is the case, then that needs to be said. All of the other points in this list are about social issues, government policies and the like. To say that the genders are not equal in this context seems to be to be very much about the social differences of the genders. This is especially true when reading up on some of the conservative speakers and their positions on gender equality. Phyllis Schlafly statements about the equal rights ammendment[2], and Ann Coulter has written on reconsidering the 19th ammendment[3]. What is meant by "Genders are not equal - obviously true" needs to be spelled out so there cannot be any misinterpretation of the message that is intended. --Rutm 17:08, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

I do think that the physiological differences between men and women - which are clearly undeniable - do have an impact on issues of pay. I don't believe, for example, that it is fair to pay women soldiers the same as the men soldiers, as they cannot carry as much weight or make themselves as useful to the unit due to their reduced physicality. Mind you, I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking that women shouldn't be anywhere in the miltary other than desk jobs at home in the US - but that's another issue. OldFaithful 17:14, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

   * 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)

A fantastic response Mr.Schlafly, I'm very grateful indeed. A few questions come to mind from your responses, and they're all about trying to write 'rules' or points of policy that do not require conditions. Conditionals ("when facing a determined enemy") cloud meaning, and if they're required, it shows lack of strength in the statement. I'm trying to find the simplest, generalised statements that work.

  • Perhaps we should say "Every woman should give birth to children", since it's good for health?
  • Since almost every enemy likely thinks of themselves as 'determined', what is a good general policy statement on ceasefires that does not include that conditional statement? If ceasefires are useless against determined enemy, do they have some use against less determined enemies? Maybe ceasefires shouldn't be a rule, if we cannot be clear about them without conditional statements?
  • And since any combatant will be deceitful in war, how can we clarify the statement on arms treaties? "Arms treaties are never a good idea"?
  • "Homosexuals do not deserve civil rights". Is that a reasonable extrapolation of your point?
  • Is it a reasonable extrapolation of the last point to say that "Poverty is uneradicable". Even though that might be wrong, I'm trying to get these statements to be snappy soundbites like that. It really helps to convey the message to younger people.

Looking forward to your thoughts, I remain, OldFaithful 17:05, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

OldFaithful, your restatements of the points are distortions. We don't do that here. Not a single one of your restatements conveys the clear, straightforward, and undeniable truth in the original statements. Instead, your restatements either marginalize the point so that it loses meaning (e.g., by omitting abortion), or makes assumptions that are untrue (e.g., every enemy is "determined" and "deceitful", or that homosexuals "do not deserve civil rights" which of course they already enjoy like everyone else).
The 90/10 rule against endless talk is enforced. Please abide by it.--Aschlafly 17:42, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

This article is a midget trying to pull down giants. Mandrew 18:38, 6 September 2007 (EDT) "Andy is a privileged, ignorant man-child" Mandrew 18:41, 6 September 2007 (EDT)

real intellectuals

i think it would be helpful for this discussion if we had another essay about real intellecuals. liberal, conservative, or moderate. there are a few examples given on this page, but i think more might answer questions about who is included and who isn't. the founding fathers are a good example. i would be against people being included just for being well known conservatives. i admire much about george w bush, for example, but i wouldn't call him an "intellectual". he didn't run as one, and we didn't elect him for that. AuH2O