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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Do what thou feel

That is not only the whole of the modern moral law, it is the whole of history as well. "Do what thou feel, with due regard for the shrieking of the herd around you, for the truth is nothing more than an opinion.". A philosopher discovers that this is a philosophy instilled at an early age, in public school:
What would you say if you found out that our public schools were teaching children that it is not true that it’s wrong to kill people for fun or cheat on tests? Would you be surprised?

I was. As a philosopher, I already knew that many college-aged students don’t believe in moral facts. While there are no national surveys quantifying this phenomenon, philosophy professors with whom I have spoken suggest that the overwhelming majority of college freshmen in their classrooms view moral claims as mere opinions that are not true or are true only relative to a culture.

What I didn’t know was where this attitude came from. Given the presence of moral relativism in some academic circles, some people might naturally assume that philosophers themselves are to blame. But they aren’t. There are historical examples of philosophers who endorse a kind of moral relativism, dating back at least to Protagoras who declared that “man is the measure of all things,” and several who deny that there are any moral facts whatsoever. But such creatures are rare. Besides, if students are already showing up to college with this view of morality, it’s very unlikely that it’s the result of what professional philosophers are teaching. So where is the view coming from?

A few weeks ago, I learned that students are exposed to this sort of thinking well before crossing the threshold of higher education. A misleading distinction between fact and opinion is embedded in the Common Core.

Fact: Something that is true about a subject and can be tested or proven.

Opinion: What someone thinks, feels, or believes.
No wonder so many millennials are clueless science fetishists who know nothing of what has gone before them. This definition of "Fact" has completely erased the very concept of history, and rendered the past nothing but mere opinion.

Public school is an unvarnished and unmitigated evil. If you are still foolish enough to be subjecting your children to it, think again. They are not only being intellectually lobotomized, they are being morally and temporally crippled as well.

There is no amount of Christian upbringing or Sunday School teaching that is capable of counteracting this philosophical programming. It will all be neatly slotted into the "opinion" category, which they are taught cannot overlap with the "fact" category. Consider the professor's test of his own son.
Students are taught that claims are either facts or opinions. They are given quizzes in which they must sort claims into one camp or the other but not both. But if a fact is something that is true and an opinion is something that is believed, then many claims will obviously be both. For example, I asked my son about this distinction after his open house. He confidently explained that facts were things that were true whereas opinions are things that are believed. We then had this conversation:

Me: “I believe that George Washington was the first president. Is that a fact or an opinion?”

Him: “It’s a fact.”

Me: “But I believe it, and you said that what someone believes is an opinion.”

Him: “Yeah, but it’s true.”

Me: “So it’s both a fact and an opinion?”

The blank stare on his face said it all.
The idea that children as young as five are going to be some sort of Christian missionary light unto the pagans in public school was always an abysmally stupid one, but the fact that even a philosopher's son can be reprogrammed in such an insidious way should shake even the most foolish Christian parent's blithe confidence in public school. And the idea that your local school is "really good" is far from a panacea, it merely means that it is better at instilling this pernicious anti-philosophy into its students' heads.

In summary, our public schools teach students that all claims are either facts or opinions and that all value and moral claims fall into the latter camp. The punchline: there are no moral facts. And if there are no moral facts, then there are no moral truths.

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243 Comments:

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Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 7:25 AM  

My view is that this is a hierarchy, like a pyramid. First of all, EVERYTHING is an opinion. Even absolute facts are opinions. Only, nobody could call them that, since there is a more specific thing (fact) to call them also. Similarly, if someone calls what he holds an opinion, you can be pretty sure he doesn't think it's a fact. Otherwise he would have said that.

So, the hierarchy from bottom up is:

Opinion: Any honestly held view, whether it turns out true or false

Truth-claim: Any honestly held view, for which the holder sets himself up to be challenged and welcomes the challenge. Expects his evidence to hold up to the challenge.

Fact: View for which there is adequate evidence to convince most people, though "adequate" must be determined case by case. There is gray area there.

Anonymous Heh March 17, 2015 7:27 AM  

All claims are either facts or opinions.

Fact, or opinion?

Your teacher believes it.... but can she prove it?

Blogger Mr.MantraMan March 17, 2015 7:29 AM  

To a point, but a prog spewing talking points will always reach for authority which can be easily brushed aside with "In your opinion" and once that is thrown at them they get cut from the rabbit herd, so IMO this cuts both ways but much more beneficial to us if used against them.

Anonymous Stilicho March 17, 2015 7:29 AM  

Markku, you're missing a category then: truth (because it IS regardless of belief or evidence).

Blogger James Dixon March 17, 2015 7:31 AM  

> Would you be surprised?

Why would I be surprised? They've been doing it for a good 50 years now.

Anonymous szook March 17, 2015 7:32 AM  

There is a 20 year old video produced by a ministry out of Colorado titled " Get Out of the Matrix" where a minister/radio talk show host debates this exact issue with a whole college philosophy class in Michigan. Relativist morality was a known factor then and it has only changed for the worse since as it has continued to spread.

Blogger Shimshon March 17, 2015 7:33 AM  

I was always bewildered by the Christian penchant for sending kids to their doom in public school by this idiotic notion that these kids could, or even should, witness there.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 7:35 AM  

Markku, you're missing a category then: truth (because it IS regardless of belief or evidence).

I listed the status of different views. Truth is not a view. It's in a category of its own, though there is a strong connection to views.

Anonymous PhillipGeorge(c)2015 March 17, 2015 7:43 AM  

Abdication from moral responsibility doesn't work. Truth, the Law, gravity and death are impervious to people's opinions.
Suspended animation adolescents and lazy minded men in a brief period of affluence are about to collide with a reality omnibus. The bus wins.
or put it this way. When the shit hits the fan, the electricity is off and the net is down it's going to seem different outside. The government aren't your parents.

At sunset the "last post" is a trumpet call to those who served know. Jesus' is history's most prominent fact. Deal with it now, for now itself is not a given certainty.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 7:44 AM  

It's the correspondence theory of truth. A view or claim is true if it corresponds with the world out there. Very unpopular these days.

Blogger MATT March 17, 2015 7:46 AM  

The author of the article seems to be confused by more than just the curriculum at his sons school. Anyway this just goes to show that schooling, especially public, is a pathetic waste of time. If youre not teaching your children in the classical sense, then just hand them a pick and shovel and tell them gold is buried in the backyard.

Are we taking bets on how long it takes Wheeler to chime in?

OpenID illuvitus March 17, 2015 8:19 AM  

For a brief descent into hell, check out the comment section of the article. A lot of people essentially make the author's point without understanding the conclusion: that if they deny moral facts or truths, they deny that murder is wrong.

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 8:23 AM  

"Fact: View for which there is adequate evidence to convince most people, though "adequate" must be determined case by case. There is gray area there."

"I listed the status of different views. Truth is not a view. It's in a category of its own, though there is a strong connection to views."

This is mistaken. Under this philosophy, there are (in the proper sense) facts that are not true, and truths that are not facts. You have abused language to the point of absurdity, Markku. "A Fact is that which is not the voting booth and not the salad bar," to paraphrase John C. Wright. Facts hold true for all people (regardless of whether we can prove them.) Under both the Common Core philosophy and your own, Markku, it is not a fact that the sum of the degrees of a triangle is 180 until someone proved it, and it is not a fact that God exists as three persons. That's nonsense. Facts exist independently of human beings. We discover them. Opinions are claims which do not correspond to objective reality, such as "That cereal tastes good" or "Convertibles are cool." The statement is entirely referential to how I happen to feel about them.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 8:31 AM  

Under this philosophy, there are (in the proper sense) facts that are not true

There ABSOLUTELY are facts that are not true.

4. The assertion or statement of a thing done or existing; sometimes, even when false, improperly put, by a transfer of meaning, for the thing done, or supposed to be done; a thing supposed or asserted to be done; as, history abounds with false facts. [1913 Webster]

I do not grant the fact.
--De Foe.
[1913 Webster]

This reasoning is founded upon a fact which is not true.
--Roger Long.
[1913 Webster]

Blogger slarrow March 17, 2015 8:32 AM  

Oh, but they can't accept that there are moral facts. Because if they are, they have to be grounded in something that transcends the various human cultures. That has two problems: first, those facts would either be grounded in some sort of objective yet somehow godless moral universe or in a supernatural framework. No one's done a good job of demonstrating the first, and the second is just Unthinkable (separation of church and state, you know.) The second problem is if Culture A asserts the moral fact and Culture B denies it, then we would be saying that *gasp* Culture A is right and Culture B is wrong, and we can't have that!

More to the point, it disables the entire sleight-of-hand framework of the multiculturalists. Briefly, they say that all cultures are valuable and that one culture's moral framework can't trump another. What my culture says is "good" may not be what your culture says is "good", so who's to say what "good" really is? But this is nonsense. Taken seriously, there can be no definition of what good is if you're denying both moral facts and the possible supremacy of certain cultures. But if that's the case, then you have no basis for saying that we should "celebrate diversity" or be understanding of other cultures because you have no normative framework. It's like filling a glass from an empty pitcher. But multicultural diversity hacks do that all the time, because a la Orwell, they're always thinking, "all cultures are equal (except my particular one, but keep that a secret." Moral facts explode that position, so can't have those. Stop that when the fodder is young.

Anonymous RedJack March 17, 2015 8:32 AM  

I was just reading the book "Toxic Charity". Over all, it is pretty good, but the major pitfall, and the reason I have started to discount the rest of the claims presented, is that the author encourages young families to move into "distressed" neighborhoods to "help" them. He then goes on saying the kids will develop street smarts, and be little missonaries.

Not only is the author clueless, he is mad. Willingly putting your children in danger of hell in order to feel better about yourself is nuts, and more to the point, not Christian. Yet many in the church are being told to do just that. We send our kids to a Lutheran School, and are VERY involved. Not as good as home school (for a variety of reasons that won't work right now, the littlest had some major medical bills), but much better than public school.

Blogger Student in Blue March 17, 2015 8:32 AM  

The idea that children as young as five are going to be some sort of Christian missionary light until the pagans[...]

I believe that's supposed to be "light unto the pagans". But, y'know, that's just like my opinion, man.

Blogger Vox March 17, 2015 8:35 AM  

I believe that's supposed to be "light unto the pagans". But, y'know, that's just like my opinion, man.

I find your abiding persuasive.

Anonymous DrTorch March 17, 2015 8:40 AM  

I was always bewildered by the Christian penchant for sending kids to their doom in public school by this idiotic notion that these kids could, or even should, witness there.

Evangelism has become an idol for the Church, and like Molech, the followers have been willing to sacrifice their children.

There have been places and times where Christian kids in public schools did fine. In some very small Midwestern villages, it may still be fine. But I think VD is right, sending your kids to public schools is a foolish, dangerous thing to do.

However, I am curious whether that might change for HS. There is a prominent S&T HS in our area that we would consider when my son is old enough. Prominent enough that you don't see a whole lot of standard curricula sneaking in, b/c the elites know they have to have a few capable people around in the future.

Is it worse? Better? May be better, but not worth the risk?

Anonymous doubting Joe March 17, 2015 8:43 AM  

I liked Philip K. Dick's definition: reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 8:45 AM  

"4. The assertion or statement of a thing done or existing; sometimes, even when false, improperly put, by a transfer of meaning, for the thing done, or supposed to be done; a thing supposed or asserted to be done; as, history abounds with false facts. [1913 Webster]"

The key there is "improperly put". Notice that I clarified above by saying "in the proper sense" foreseeing this lame-ass argument. I can't believe I have to debate this: Facts, if they are facts, are always true.

I note you have resorted to the fourth definition. Show me the first through the third definitions, that probably eviscerate your argument, whereas this definition corresponds to a manner of speaking rhetorically. In both examples, it's clear that the speaker is mocking his opponent's begging the question. i.e., "I do not grant the 'fact'".

When we cease to be able to consider objective categories that exist independently of the human person, we have lost the light of reason and the image of God.

Blogger rumpole5 March 17, 2015 8:48 AM  

I don't understand your objection. Without some transcendent source to determine right from wrong, that determination IS a personal opinion. Your view of morality has as much validity as mine does. This is precisely why our founding document used the phrase "endowed by the Creator" to set up the idea that individuals have rights that are unalienable. The whole USA system of government only makes sense when viewed as a theocracy where a transcendent "creator" sets moral limits. The same is true of all functioning morality.

Blogger James Dixon March 17, 2015 8:50 AM  

My understanding of the strict definition, BTW, is that a fact is something which can be demonstrated to be true or false. Whether it is true or false doesn't matter.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 8:51 AM  

The key there is "improperly put"

Incorrect. After the Oxford Commas, comes "or". This means that all points have an "or" -relationship with each other.

And number 4 is not "resorting" to anything. One is free to use any word in its accepted sphere of meanings. I used it in number four. You challenged it. I showed you to be wrong.

OpenID cailcorishev March 17, 2015 8:53 AM  

I was always bewildered by the Christian penchant for sending kids to their doom in public school by this idiotic notion that these kids could, or even should, witness there.

I think very few people (if any) send their kids to public school for that reason. They send them for other reasons -- finances, inertia, not wanting to be different, being misinformed about homeschooling -- and then the "witnessing" idea comes up as a noble-sounding excuse.

Anonymous Sensei March 17, 2015 8:55 AM  

Evangelism has become an idol for the Church, and like Molech, the followers have been willing to sacrifice their children.

"Go and make disciples of all nations" is a commandment, so following it is not idolatry. I'd argue it's rather that the idea of evangelism has become an idol.

The percentage of Christians boldly sharing their faith in the US is seemingly quite low (and here too), but the idea of "strategies to share the gospel that don't require us to actually share it" is quite popular. So people "share the gospel" by inviting other people to visit their church (hope the pastor mentions the gospel in the message!), putting their kids in school to be "lights" (like throwing a flashlight into the ocean), or just doing nice things for people and hoping they draw the necessary conclusions themselves.

None of those things are actually obeying the Great Commission or evangelism, but being or seeming good in themselves, they might assuage the guilt of not obeying it. (Though sometimes people would like to do more, they just like any training themselves)

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:01 AM  

"There is no amount of Christian upbringing or Sunday School teaching that is capable of counteracting this philosophical programming."

Preach.

The retort to the tired christian argument that christian children will act as missionaries to the other kids in public schools, is simple math.

They get your christian child 9 hours a day 5 days a week. Then they have him for another hour or 2 after school for homework. Every second of it moral relativism is pounded into the kid's head.

And you think in the 2 hours you actually get to see your kid at night... and 30 minutes at sunday school is going to undo that?

Bitch please.

Anonymous ex-townie March 17, 2015 9:02 AM  

In many rural or suburb parts of Flyover Country (aka Jesusland) the local public schools = Christian schools. That was because the students, parents, teachers, were 99% Christian, most attended the same 2-3 chuches on the town.

Immigration and Federal central control destroyed this.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:05 AM  

"I think very few people (if any) send their kids to public school for that reason."

Its a prevalent argument christians use to rationalize their choice to homeschool. Its been brought up on this very blog several times.

Anonymous Roundtine March 17, 2015 9:14 AM  

And you think in the 2 hours you actually get to see your kid at night... and 30 minutes at sunday school is going to undo that?

Not to mention the peer pressure. In terms of most influential on peers, I will bet on the 8 year-old who's dad let's him watch porn over the preacher's kid

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 9:14 AM  

rationalize their choice to homeschool

Quoted without comment

Blogger Shimshon March 17, 2015 9:16 AM  

Just curious here. For those who send kids to private school, how many send to single sex vs. coed?

Anonymous p-dawg March 17, 2015 9:18 AM  

You don't understand at all, Vox. Duh. You put the good apple into the barrel of bad apples, and it turns all the bad apples good again. That's how nature works. Right? Right.

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 9:21 AM  

"And number 4 is not "resorting" to anything. One is free to use any word in its accepted sphere of meanings. I used it in number four. You challenged it. I showed you to be wrong."

No, you didn't. As anyone knows, the most accepted usages are listed first. For the reasons I stated above, it is nonsense to use this definition of "fact" as one's go-to. There is a huge difference between speaking of a supposed fact as a "fact" in conversation, and creating a universal category system as you have done that makes no conceptual room for facts as universal truths. The one is speaking loosely, the other is thinking incoherently. I am not objecting to the use of definition 4, I am objecting to the abandonment of definition 1. Tell me, is it a fact that God exists as three persons? Is it a fact for the population of India?

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:24 AM  

"Quoted without comment"

shutup Finn... I've had exactly 1 cup of coffee... which means leaving a "not" out of a given sentence is far from the worst thing that could happen... even if it did change the entire meaning of the comment.

Anonymous DrTorch March 17, 2015 9:26 AM  

"Go and make disciples of all nations" is a commandment, so following it is not idolatry. I'd argue it's rather that the idea of evangelism has become an idol.

Your insistence on semantics doesn't impress me. Largely b/c it's wrong. As is your understanding of the Great Commission.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:29 AM  

"Largely b/c it's wrong. As is your understanding of the Great Commission. "

Agreed. The idea is to expose people to the Good News who've never heard it. Not to pound people over the head with it after they have heard, and rejected it.

Anonymous Old Guy March 17, 2015 9:29 AM  

I got the same thing when I went to public school in the 1970s. If I expressed a moral judgment, the teachers would dismissively say "that's just your opinion" or "that's just a value judgment". (To which I thought, "so? my values and my judgments are correct.")

I certainly wasn't getting my conviction that moral truths existed from my parents, who were atheists and never took us to church.

So a child can emerge unscathed from the putrid sea of materialism and relativism... but that's probably not the way to bet.

Anonymous mideon March 17, 2015 9:30 AM  

"rationalize their choice to homeschool"

What about rationalize their choice to private school?

It is easy to ASSUME that your local Christian school is not teaching this same garbage.

Just like it is easy to ASSUME your priest or pastor isn't a SJW molester scumbag.

Not that this excuses public schools.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 9:32 AM  

No, you didn't. As anyone knows, the most accepted usages are listed first.

The most often used, not most accepted. A meaning is either accepted, in which case it is in the dictionary, or not accepted, in which case it is not.

There is a huge difference between speaking of a supposed fact as a "fact" in conversation, and creating a universal category system as you have done that makes no conceptual room for facts as universal truths. The one is speaking loosely, the other is thinking incoherently.

The way I started, was "My view is that this is a hierarchy, like a pyramid." You could have easily challenged this with counterexamples and there could have been reasonable discussion. Instead, you immediately opted for bluster. I'm getting a feeling that you are in a habit of doing this.

Tell me, is it a fact that God exists as three persons?

Yes.

Is it a fact for the population of India?

Since you wrote it with capital G, therefore referring to Yahweh in specific, yes.

Anonymous anon1 March 17, 2015 9:32 AM  

Can we all agree that Forster is an asshole? Go back to the Catholic-Attack post if you want to snipe at Markku for taking your balls.

Anonymous Old Guy March 17, 2015 9:34 AM  

There is a prominent S&T HS in our area that we would consider when my son is old enough. Prominent enough that you don't see a whole lot of standard curricula sneaking in, b/c the elites know they have to have a few capable people around in the future.

There is such a school in my area. The elites are desperate to increase the number of blacks and Hispanics who attend because Diversity Is Strength or something. This argues against the idea that the elites believe they need capable people.

Also the Asians are already a majority of the students, though far from a majority of the local population, so you have the classic situation in the making: Asians pushing whites out at the top "because merit" and blacks/Hispanics pushing whites out at the bottom "because fairness".

Anonymous Old Guy March 17, 2015 9:35 AM  

Foster, you aspie fuckhead, quit quibbling.

Blogger John Wright March 17, 2015 9:36 AM  

"First of all, EVERYTHING is an opinion."

This statement, if true, is false. It disproves itself.

Anonymous Old Guy March 17, 2015 9:37 AM  

What about rationalize their choice to private school?

It is easy to ASSUME that your local Christian school is not teaching this same garbage.


ALL the schools in our area teach the same liberal garbage. Go to the private or parochial schools and you will see the exact same pap on the walls: diversity is great, love the planet, etc. etc.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 9:37 AM  

You're going to have to make a case for that, John, because I can't even imagine how you would draw that conclusion from the model I presented.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:38 AM  

Well... this Foster character is a popular fellow...

Anonymous Sensei March 17, 2015 9:39 AM  

"Largely b/c it's wrong. As is your understanding of the Great Commission. "

Agreed. The idea is to expose people to the Good News who've never heard it. Not to pound people over the head with it after they have heard, and rejected it.


DrTorch- Irrelevant response; you haven't the slightest idea what my understanding is.

Nate- Please quote where I said anything about pounding anyone over the head with it after they've rejected it.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:41 AM  

"It is easy to ASSUME that your local Christian school is not teaching this same garbage.

Just like it is easy to ASSUME your priest or pastor isn't a SJW molester scumbag."

one need not assume either of those things. You simply observe.

The point is that Christians sending their kids to public schools are in denial. And yes.. some of the parents that send their kids to private schools are also in denial.

Anonymous Most Everyone. March 17, 2015 9:41 AM  

But but but like...... one time I knew this homeschool kid and like...... he was weird!

Anonymous mideon March 17, 2015 9:42 AM  

“punish climate-change deniersfor rejecting accepted science”

http://ecowatch.com/2015/03/16/al-gore-sxsw-punish-climate-deniers/

Gore said he was looking forward to the Pope’s highly anticipated encyclical on the environment which is due to be released in June or July. “I’m not a Catholic,” Gore said, “but I could be persuaded to become one.”

(FULL DISCLOSURE: I send my kids to a Catholic school... sucks for me)

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 9:43 AM  

"Can we all agree that Forster [sic] is an asshole?"

While I may be an asshole, and Saint Thomas Aquinas may be a dumb ass, that doesn't necessarily make either of us wrong.

Anonymous Revan March 17, 2015 9:44 AM  

How should fact and opinion be taught?

Anonymous Miserman March 17, 2015 9:44 AM  

Please correct me if my thinking is off, but here is how I see fact and truth.

Fact: A man is shot dead by another man out of jealousy.
Truth: This is murder.

Morals are not facts that come from natural facts or are synthesized from observing natural facts. Rather, morals must come from a transcendent source that is Truth. So the pursuit of truth is more important than facts.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:46 AM  

"Nate- Please quote where I said anything about pounding anyone over the head with it after they've rejected it."

I wasn't speaking about you specifically Sensei but about the behavior of modern american evangelicals. Though that behavior does directly refute your assertion that its the idea of evangelizing that's the problem... its the actual evangelizing. They don't sit around and talk about the thing. They do it.

DrTorch and I may be taking you to mean something that you don't actually mean though.

Anonymous Old Guy March 17, 2015 9:46 AM  

Anybody remember Allan Bloom's "The Closing of the American Mind" (1987)?

He noted that secondary education taught that there were no objective facts or moral truths.

So this is not a new discovery....

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:48 AM  

'Morals are not facts that come from natural facts or are synthesized from observing natural facts. Rather, morals must come from a transcendent source that is Truth. So the pursuit of truth is more important than facts."

Meh.

Truth just means the facts are accurate. There is no need to pedastalize the word.

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 9:48 AM  

What I didn’t know was where this attitude came from. Given the presence of moral relativism in some academic circles, some people might naturally assume that philosophers themselves are to blame. But they aren’t.

hooooo boy, is that false.

Karl Marx was a philosopher and is still hugely influential.

this goes back to me referring to Harvard ( and the like ) as intellectual shit holes.

for THAT is where this type of philosopher is concentrated and also where they formulate their theories ...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophy_of_education

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 9:48 AM  

"The most often used, not most accepted."

Granted, but that doesn't change the substance of my argument.

Anonymous mideon March 17, 2015 9:49 AM  

"And yes.. some of the parents that send their kids to private schools are also in denial."

Some? I would say MOST.

Christian parents who send their kids to public schools believe that since they are paying for it, they will thus receive the same product promised in the brochure.

NOT saying that they shouldn't send their kids to private schools (I send my kids to private schools)... only that they are probably even more gullible and trusting since they are paying directly.

Usually a better outcome than public schools, for sure.

Anonymous anon1 March 17, 2015 9:50 AM  

"While I may be an asshole, and Saint Thomas Aquinas may be a dumb ass, that doesn't necessarily make either of us wrong."

so it's Rome or die, fella?

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:50 AM  

"How should fact and opinion be taught?"

They shouldn't be separated so much. Opinion should be judged by facts... and all opinions should not be treated as equal.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 March 17, 2015 9:51 AM  

Now, now, there is no scientific evidence that George Washington ever existed. He could very well have been a construct of the Freemasons.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 9:54 AM  

You know, Catholics, Vox would probably absolutely love it if you made this a Catholic thread. Just a little inside tip, if you want to endear yourselves to him.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 9:54 AM  

"Christian parents who send their kids to public schools believe that since they are paying for it, they will thus receive the same product promised in the brochure."

I dunno mate... we obviously observe very different things. I don't send my kids to private schools but most white people in my town do because the public schools are so wretched. My experience is they are extremely engaged with their private school because they are paying for it.

the only ones that are not so engaged with what is actually being taught are the ones that are sending their kids to the elite private schools. In there case... the education isn't what they are concerned with anyway. They are sending the kids there for the social contacts and the networking.


Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 9:56 AM  

@Markku,
So given your universal definition of a fact: "Fact: View for which there is adequate evidence to convince most people, though "adequate" must be determined case by case," how is it that most Indians are not convinced that God exists as three persons in a Trinity, if it is a fact for them, as you admitted above?

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 9:58 AM  

John C. Wright wrote: This statement, if true, is false. It disproves itself.

How so, John? Opinions can be facts as well as fancy. I'd really like to see how one can disassociate "facts" from the brains that evaluate them. For some reason, whether for good or for ill, we seem to think that if enough brains agree on something, that that thing is therefore brain-independent.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 9:59 AM  

how is it that most Indians are not convinced that God exists as three persons in a Trinity, if it is a fact for them, as you admitted above?

It occurs to me that you might have meant something else than I understood you to. Do you mean, "God exists, and also does so in three persons", or that "God is defined as an entity that exists in three persons"? I assumed the latter. It is a fact, because it is the overwhelming majority view of said entity.

But if you mean the former, then no, it is not a fact. Nor is the opposite claim a fact. It is true, but not fact.

Anonymous Sensei March 17, 2015 10:00 AM  

DrTorch and I may be taking you to mean something that you don't actually mean though.

Perhaps you thought I meant that because those faux-evangelistic methods were insufficient, I was advocating the "don't take no for an answer" approach. To be clear, I'd condemn that probably as strongly as you would.

What I actually meant was that people try to wrongly evade their own responsibility in various ways, one being foisting it off on their kids by throwing them into the meat grinder, whether they do it sincerely or hypocritically as someone else said. (There's a strong SJW faction in the church who would say it's your duty to move into the ghetto and send your kids to an inner city school, because the church didn't oppose racism enough 60 years ago)

But obviously trying to pound people over the head with the gospel would be a different kind of wrong approach (one that I see a lot of Christians doing because they think they're supposed to.. that's why I mentioned training). I'm not trying to suggest that's the right way to do it.

Anonymous Cash March 17, 2015 10:01 AM  

"I wasn't speaking about you specifically Sensei but about the behavior of modern american evangelicals."

You are taking the boogy man and making him into every man. Evangelicals being too evangelistic is in no way a problem. All I ever here is how people don't want to be "one of those Bible thumbers" but how many people are really evangelizing too much? Not that many.

It's an excuse! Those people are too afraid or ashamed so they have to point the finger at someone else.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 10:03 AM  

Markku wrote: Fact: View for which there is adequate evidence to convince most people, though "adequate" must be determined case by case. There is gray area there.

Does evidence actually convince? After all, the evidence for X -- not matter what X is -- is the same for those who hold X to be true as it is for those who hold X to be false.

Anonymous . March 17, 2015 10:03 AM  

I dunno mate...

Definition of a douchebag: someone who calls you "mate" who is not an Australian.

Blogger Desiderius March 17, 2015 10:03 AM  

"It's an excuse! Those people are too afraid or ashamed so they have to point the finger at someone else."

Amen, brother.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 10:03 AM  

"There's a strong SJW faction in the church who would say it's your duty to move into the ghetto and send your kids to an inner city school, because the church didn't oppose racism enough 60 years ago"

ya know its funny... The Guinness family actually did move into the ghetto in Ireland to force the high brows to face the reality of the poverty there.

But they didn't send their kids to the same schools as the street urchins.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 10:05 AM  

Cash wrote: Evangelicals being too evangelistic is in no way a problem.

It is, when you ask the man on the street what their message is, and it's everything but "this guy rose from the dead 2,000 years ago."

Anonymous p-dawg March 17, 2015 10:09 AM  

2+2=4 is not an opinion. It just is. It doesn't matter if you believe it, it doesn't matter if you espouse it, it doesn't matter if you deny it, it just doesn't matter. It is, it was, and it will be true regardless of what anyone thinks. That's an example of something that is a fact and not an opinion. Shiner beer is better than Budweiser beer - that's an example of something that's an opinion and also a fact. The statement "everything is an opinion" aspired to be the former, but couldn't even make the latter. Sorry, pal, not everything is an opinion.

Anonymous Cash March 17, 2015 10:10 AM  

"It is, when you ask the man on the street what their message is, and it's everything but "this guy rose from the dead 2,000 years ago.""

Yeah and that is not a result of evangelism. Good job at proving the opposite of your point.

Anonymous Rob March 17, 2015 10:12 AM  

Saint Thomas Aquinas may be a dumb ass

Dumb ox, St. Thomas was known as a dumb ox. It's a fat joke.

Anonymous Stilicho March 17, 2015 10:12 AM  

Markku, is anthropogenic global warming a fact? Is it true? Is fact merely consensus? Or does something have to be true to be fact?

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 10:13 AM  

Shimshon March 17, 2015 9:16 AM
For those who send kids to private school, how many send to single sex vs. coed?



went to a Catholic school for 7th / 8th grade.

i can't remember ever having seen a gender separated primary school.




DrTorch March 17, 2015 8:40 AM
In some very small Midwestern villages, it may still be fine.



no, because they are still constrained by the Fed standards because they accept public funds.

therefore, you have no significant control over either the curriculum or how it is taught.

also, a public school is going to require an education degree in order to teach there ...

now we're back at the colleges and the crypto-Marxist pedagogy taught there.

once again:
you have now seen 100+ years of pub. ed., with it's continually falling reading comprehension, math and logic scores as well as indoctrination into secular humanism / away from Christianity.

how long do you watch this before you admit that the system is doing WHAT IT WAS DESIGNED TO DO.

but your 6 year old daughter will know how to put a condom on a banana, so there's that.


Markku March 17, 2015 9:32 AM
Since you wrote it with capital G, therefore referring to Yahweh in specific, yes.



India's large muslim minority would like a word with you.



Markku March 17, 2015 9:37 AM
You're going to have to make a case for that, John



unknown unknowns are truths which are NOT opinions.


Nate March 17, 2015 9:38 AM
Well... this Foster character is a popular fellow...



not that this has any bearing on his truthiness.

Anonymous Sensei March 17, 2015 10:16 AM  

ya know its funny... The Guinness family actually did move into the ghetto in Ireland to force the high brows to face the reality of the poverty there.

But they didn't send their kids to the same schools as the street urchins.


Which reminds me, Happy Saint Patrick's Day everyone..

But yeah, there's a big difference between modeling that kind of incarnational ministry for your kids and sending them off as guinea pigs to do it without your guidance.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 10:19 AM  

p-dawg wrote: 2+2=4 is not an opinion.

Of course it is. Dogs don't know that 2+2=4. That you think this true is a function of the way your brain is wired. That the wiring of your brain seems to correspond with the behavior of a (supposedly) external, independent reality is also a function of the way your brain is wired.

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 10:19 AM  

"Do you mean, "God exists, and also does so in three persons", or that "God is defined as an entity that exists in three persons"? I assumed the latter. It is a fact, because it is the overwhelming majority view of said entity.

But if you mean the former, then no, it is not a fact. Nor is the opposite claim a fact. It is true, but not fact."

So, to boil down what you have said, you would agree that applicable to the Indians, it is not a fact that God exists and does so in three persons.

Well, good luck with your missionary work.

By the way, strangers of the internet who share an appetite for reasoned commentary, if someone bothers to address your argument by applying his mind to the claims you make and evaluating them, it isn't a sign of disrespect, some bluster notwithstanding. Nothing I have said today is particularly Catholic-leaning, nor would my arguments alter if Markku were Catholic and I Protestant. When I was a Protestant even as now, I have always believed all facts, properly so called, to be true, and all objective truths facts.

Anonymous Salt March 17, 2015 10:21 AM  

"First of all, EVERYTHING is an opinion."

This statement, if true, is false. It disproves itself.


How so, John? Opinions can be facts as well as fancy.

Mr. Wright is correct. I may have an opinion as to the truthfulness of 2+2=4, but my opinion has no bearing on the fact that such is true. Opinions are neither true nor false unto themselves, but merely express one's thoughts as to some stated X.

OpenID cailcorishev March 17, 2015 10:22 AM  

One common mistake of parents is to assume that the schools are basically what they were 30 years ago when they first attended them -- maybe a bit worse in some ways, but more-or-less the same. This is not true; plus nostalgia and time make them remember the good bits more than the bad bits. I like to tell people that no one who actually remembers riding a school bus for an hour every morning would be excited about pushing his crying 5-year-old (nowadays even 4- or 3-year-old) onto one. There's a lot of selective forgetfulness that goes on.

On the subject of parochial schools, I can't do better than to quote Bishop Fulton Sheen: "I tell my relatives and best friends, ‘If you want your children to fight for their faith, send them to public school. If you want them to lose their faith, send them to Catholic school.’" (Note, too, that he doesn't suggest they can spread the faith in public school as some Christian parents rationalize it, but that they'll have to fight to retain their own.) Just the other day, an alumnus of our local Catholic high school told me the drug problem was actually worse there than at the public school because the kids had more money, it having changed years ago from a religious school to a private school for the town's upper crust. Maybe some are good, but they're rare.

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 10:23 AM  

wrf3 March 17, 2015 10:03 AM
After all, the evidence for X -- not matter what X is -- is the same for those who hold X to be true as it is for those who hold X to be false.


trivial to prove that assertion false.

Michael Mann will not release his raw tree ring data to anyone else.

therefore, NO ONE ELSE has the same 'evidence' for AGW that Mann does.


p-dawg March 17, 2015 10:09 AM
2+2=4 is not an opinion. It just is.


for certain special conditions.

in other cases, 2 + 2 = 11

if you don't understand why, simply refer back to how i used to heckle Ann Morgan about her IQ.

Anonymous DrTorch March 17, 2015 10:23 AM  

What I actually meant was that people try to wrongly evade their own responsibility in various ways,

You made that pretty clear IMO. And I disagree with you.

Evangelism is one component of the Great Commission (albeit a critically important one) and the Great Commission is but one command among many that we've been given, and are still expected to obey.

It's my understanding that this actually reads "As you are going, make disciples..." As you are going where, to do what? The point is we all a calling to follow the Dominion Mandate, and as were are obeying that command, the Great Commission becomes one more element in our lives.

Many modern "conservative" Christians (and some liberal ones too) have taken the Great Commission to mean evangelism trumps everything else. I know this to be true b/c I've heard it come from pulpits, I've seen it stated in course catalogs for seminaries.

That's not Scriptural. Even worse, it's counterproductive toward evangelism.

It's also idolatry.

And as is historically demonstrated, idolatry leads to all sorts of sinful and destructive consequences. Parents sending their kids into hellacious public schools is a tragic one. The willingness of local churches to compromise all sorts of Biblical commands, for the sake of inclusion, is another.

I would suggest that not giving God credit for the technological, scientific, and economic wonders that resulted from the shreds of faith found in W. Civilization (fulfillment of Jesus' prophecy in Matt 17:20 and elsewhere) is still another. In this way I agree with you that Christians have been remiss in their responsibilities, because it's a form of evangelism to do such. But that's not what I interpreted you to mean. If I'm wrong about that, I apologize.

However, in the end, the current connotation of "evangelism" has become an idol to the church. Has the "idea of evangelism" become an idol? Maybe so. I think that's semantics, but if you care to explain it further, I'll listen.

Blogger JartStar March 17, 2015 10:24 AM  

The destruction of morals is just a byproduct of their real goal which is mushy minds about all subjects in order to get them to believe whatever they are told because they can't think clearly about things.

Anonymous p-dawg March 17, 2015 10:25 AM  

@wrf: Uh, are you insane? Dogs don't know that 2+2=4 and yet it still does, regardless. THAT is why it's a fact and not an opinion. Because it IS. Because if a dog eats 2 steaks, and then eats 2 more steaks, that dog just ate 4 steaks, even if it didn't know how to count them. What does a dog's understanding have to do with truth? Is that the level of understanding to which you aspire? Keep going, then, one day you may get there.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 10:25 AM  

"You are taking the boogy man and making him into every man. Evangelicals being too evangelistic is in no way a problem. All I ever here is how people don't want to be "one of those Bible thumbers" but how many people are really evangelizing too much? Not that many."

Way to miss the point.

Neither Dr Torch nor myself bothered to complain about evangelicals evangelizing to much.

Its not "you're doing it to much". Its "you're doing it wrong."

Which goes to the point wrf3 was making... that you also missed.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 10:29 AM  

wrf3:
Does evidence actually convince? After all, the evidence for X -- not matter what X is -- is the same for those who hold X to be true as it is for those who hold X to be false.

It doesn't convince the contrarians. That doesn't mean it's false, though.

p-dawg:
2+2=4 is not an opinion. It just is.

The axiom from which this follows, just is. The belief that it corresponds with the world, which is in my mind, is opinion and fact. When I say it or write it, it becomes also a truth-claim, and if someone challenges it, I will prove it from the axiom. Exactly like I presented in my model. It is all three.

Sorry, pal, not everything is an opinion.

Admittedly I didn't write the message very well. I wrote the part about the views first, and then added that sentence to the beginning to first summarize the model. But at that point the reader hadn't yet encountered the word "view". So, I meant "every view is an opinion". But every view is not true, nor fact, nor truth-claim.

Stilicho:
Markku, is anthropogenic global warming a fact? Is it true? Is fact merely consensus? Or does something have to be true to be fact?

This was the first example that I considered. I don't know. It is one of those annoying corner cases. It is at least at striking distance of being a fact. On the other hand, it is hard to tell how much they bullshit us about how widely it is accepted. My own experience is that it is not a fact. I also make the truth-claim that it is false.

Bob:
India's large muslim minority would like a word with you.

It was said by a Catholic. The monotheistic religions capitalize the word when they refer to their own god.

unknown unknowns are truths which are NOT opinions.

As I mentioned, I'm afraid I managed to poison the well by writing that sentence first. I refer to all views. An unknown unknown is by definition not a view. So, it is outside the hierarchy, and in the separate category of true and false. Just like I said.

Anonymous p-dawg March 17, 2015 10:30 AM  

@bob yes, but if under a special condition 2+2=11, does that mean that in base 10, 2 + 2 no longer = 4? If a word, say "cook" has two meanings: "to prepare food" and "one who prepares food", when I use the word to mean one thing under one circumstance, does it stop meaning the other in other circumstances? Does it make my use false because there exists another use?

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 10:30 AM  

cailcorishev March 17, 2015 10:22 AM
One common mistake of parents is to assume that the schools are basically what they were 30 years ago when they first attended them -- maybe a bit worse in some ways, but more-or-less the same.



the schools were crap 30 years ago.

they just weren't as crappy as they are now.

as an example, i know a ~30 year old college graduate who does / did not know what the words lewd, dastardly, etc mean.

she regularly texts me to ask me to define "x".

it's not that she's stupid ( although i certainly wouldn't think she's over 120 ), it's that she's been 'educated' to be ignorant.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 10:31 AM  

bob k. mando wrote: trivial to prove that assertion false.

Michael Mann will not release his raw tree ring data to anyone else.


Do you think that if he did release his data that all of the skeptics would become believers?

Anonymous p-dawg March 17, 2015 10:32 AM  

@Markku"So, I meant "every view is an opinion". But every view is not true, nor fact, nor truth-claim."

Then I withdraw my objection. I concede this point, as stated this way.

Anonymous Stilicho March 17, 2015 10:33 AM  

Well, Markku, in your opinion, does something have to be true to reality to be a fact?

Blogger JDC March 17, 2015 10:35 AM  

I think very few people (if any) send their kids to public school for that reason.

I can address the "if any." In my line of work I get invited into many personal theological discussions. On five occasions that I can recall I had this very conversation with individuals regarding the "let your light shine" in the public schools. We have a very good Lutheran school in our community, and our public schools are regularly listed in the top five in the state (4th from the last report). Some are absolutely baffled that, given the resources we have in our community, that we would home-school our kids.

I usually just calmly respond that we have determined that this is best for our children and leave it at that. Sometimes they press the issue. They will say that we are depriving the community of much needed funds by keeping our kids from school. They whine that our kids won't be socialized. They also sometimes add that our kids could be the yeast in the sour, putrid dough that is the public school system (my characterization, not theirs).

If they press the issue and behave like jambronis, I respond with a mix of shaming and condemnation. I share that we love our children, and desire to spend as much time as we can with them while they are still young. If a child is in school, you get only a few hours a week. We get every hour of every week and we love it. Homeschooling offers that opportunity.

Then I point out that by keeping our kiddies home we do certainly deprive them of some societal teachings that public school offers. Smoking, oral sex in the bathrooms, moral relativism, anti-Christ behaviors, insolence, the benefits of anal sex, the pressure to dress a certain way, the pressure to have a boyfriend or a girlfriend when one hits puberty...the list goes on and on.

Even had one member leave the church because she was so mortified that her pastor home schooled. I can actually say that I took pleasure in saying, "There's the door." (I wanted to add don't let it hit you in the ass on the way out, but i refrained).

Anonymous Cash March 17, 2015 10:35 AM  

"Way to miss the point.

Neither Dr Torch nor myself bothered to complain about evangelicals evangelizing to much.

"Its not "you're doing it to much". Its "you're doing it wrong."

Which goes to the point wrf3 was making... that you also missed."

I didn't miss your point, your point is just stupid.

I wonder if Vox was thinking about you when he wrote that post about the moderates a week or so ago. Who cares if someone somewhere is "not doing it right"! They are doing it then we should be happy about it and support them.

And yes you were complaining about them evangelizing too much. You complained about them not stopping a a certain point which means they do too much.... so yeah wrong again Nate.

All Christians should feel great that moderates like Nate will be there to stab them in the back when doing the good work.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 10:37 AM  

Markku wrote: It doesn't convince the contrarians. That doesn't mean it's false, though.
It doesn't mean it's true, either. What is the essential quality that makes the contrarians wrong and the advocates right? Numbers? Something else?

The axiom from which this [2+2=4] follows, just is. The belief that it corresponds with the world, which is in my mind, is opinion and fact. When I say it or write it, it becomes also a truth-claim, and if someone challenges it, I will prove it from the axiom.

I'm reminded of this passage from "Quantum Computing since Democritus": "How can we state axioms that will put the integers on a more secure foundation, when the very symbols that we're using to write down the axioms presuppose that we already know what the integers are? Well, precisely because of this point, I don't think that axioms and formal logic can be used to place arithmetic on a more secure foundation. If you don't already agree that 1+1=2, then a lifetime of studying mathematical logic won't make it any clearer." [pg 10.]

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 10:39 AM  

Well, good luck with your missionary work.

Again, I have stated several times that "fact" and "true" are not the same thing in the model. If the statement "God exists, and also does so in three persons" were a fact in India, then I could use it as a preposition for an argument, and go directly to something else, like "how then shall we live?"

But now, I have to present it as a truth-claim. I have to defend it when challenged. Possibly with miracles. I can't expect them to believe it just because I say it. If it were a fact, then defending it would be unnecessary. The listener is likely to already believe it. I can go straight to application. Like we do in churches. We simply assume it, when we preach.

Nothing I have said today is particularly Catholic-leaning

I didn't refer to you. In that regard, you have been well-behaved in this thread.

Blogger Vox March 17, 2015 10:41 AM  

I didn't miss your point, your point is just stupid.

Pointing out that not evangelizing is not evangelizing may be obvious, but it's not stupid. It would, admittedly, have been more clear if instead of "you're doing it wrong" they had said "you're not doing it at all".

The "let your light shine" theory of public school attendance is not Christian evangelism. It is ex post facto rationalization.

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 10:43 AM  

wrf3 March 17, 2015 10:31 AM
Do you think that if he did release his data that all of the skeptics would become believers?



moving the goal posts.

this has nothing to do with the fact that you asserted that all have access to all the same 'evidence'.

the field of Econ ( among others ) also thoroughly refutes your assertion. special knowledge / insider trading ( special evidence not known to the general public ) have long been known to be of critical importance to investing success.

as to your specific question this time, being able to differentiate between the premises AND the logic being used to evaluate those stipulations is critical to even the pretense of reason.

that you would even attempt this on me after having watched me for so long does not speak well of you.

Anonymous Corvinus March 17, 2015 10:44 AM  

I suppose this also means that women who have been though the public school system are intrinsically damaged goods.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 10:44 AM  

Well, Markku, in your opinion, does something have to be true to reality to be a fact?

No. As per Webster definition 4, for example "history abounds with false facts". I think this makes the word more useful. If it's a synonym for "truth", it has less value than if it refers to something to which no other word refers: A claim that is so widely accepted that you can safely use it as a premise for an argument, without going out of your way to prove it. If someone is a contrarian and challenges it anyway, then you debate it. But you don't need to do it unless that happens.

Blogger Log March 17, 2015 10:50 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Nate March 17, 2015 10:51 AM  

"And yes you were complaining about them evangelizing too much. You complained about them not stopping a a certain point which means they do too much.... so yeah wrong again Nate. "

Two men "evangelize" 8 hours every day.

1 man goes to many people sharing the Good News. If one rejects him, he simply moves on to the next.

The second man goes to few people sharing the Good News. But focuses almost entirely on those who have already rejected the Good News.

The problem here is not that the second man is evangelizing to long. Both are evangelizing 8 hours a day. The problem is the second man is doing it wrong.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 10:53 AM  

Why this system? Because of all possibilities I've considered, it contains more names for more different things than any other system. It is the model with the most explanatory power. And it still doesn't require me to accept the coherence theory of truth, aka abject insanity. Because true/false are in a separate category. It merely requires "fact" to hold a meaning that is slightly less popular than the alternative. I see this as a reasonable price.

Anonymous Will Best March 17, 2015 10:55 AM  

My understanding of the strict definition, BTW, is that a fact is something which can be demonstrated to be true or false. Whether it is true or false doesn't matter.

That would be a hypothesis.

They send them for other reasons -- finances, inertia, not wanting to be different, being misinformed about homeschooling -- and then the "witnessing" idea comes up as a noble-sounding excuse.

NAPSALT? I follow what my kids learn pretty closely and haven't found anything disturbing. Then again, I live in an area that is not particularly conducive to SJWing and the local schools are funded around 95%+ from local tax dollars so it gets to tell the state to pound sand.

It seems rather dangerous to use the approach the schools are taking. Its all good if you can control the facts, but not so much when you don't. Which is why I suppose they want to end freedom of speech.

It also seems to have been a long time coming. Barrack Obama uses the line "You are entitled to your own opinions but not your own facts". The odd thing about every time I hear him use that line, he is using it to dispute a fact. So it seems like elites are trying to implement it as some sort of triggering device used to cause sheep to discount the opposition.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus March 17, 2015 10:56 AM  

"And the idea that your local school is "really good" is far from a panacea, it merely means that it is better at instilling this pernicious anti-philosophy into its students' heads."

Your smart kid whom you don't think will be fooled by this stuff because he's smart is in fact educable, and will likely be top of his class in sorting real facts like "I have money in my hand now" from mere opinions like "that was an act of murder".

Blogger JartStar March 17, 2015 10:57 AM  

I suppose this also means that women who have been though the public school system are intrinsically damaged goods.

No, but it means they are at a disadvantage to young women who have not gone through the meatgrinder.

Pointing out the failures of the public schools is easy but as much as I've seen Christian teens struggle with it, I see social media and the internet making as much or more of an impact.

For instance a couple we know pulled their struggling teenaged daughter out of public schools and homeschooled her. She had a lot of the typical issues, and improved dramatically in a few months by being at home and as a reward gave her a tablet. Then her mom happened to check her tablet one day and it was filled with lesbian porn. We can talk about the technical and moral failings of the parents in not monitoring her better, but temptations and the world are everywhere.

Anonymous ? March 17, 2015 11:01 AM  

They will say that we are depriving the community of much needed funds by keeping our kids from school.

Don't you have to pay real estate taxes anyway, which fund the schools?

The destruction of morals is just a byproduct of their real goal which is mushy minds about all subjects in order to get them to believe whatever they are told because they can't think clearly about things.

I think "nothing is good or evil" is just an important a goal to TPTB as "nothing is true or false". If TPTB didn't neutralize morality, then the rabble might attack TPTB's policies, doctrines, and actions as EVIL (which they are) as well as FALSE (which they also are).

Blogger Rabbi B March 17, 2015 11:01 AM  

"And the idea that your local school is "really good" is far from a panacea, it merely means that it is better at instilling this pernicious anti-philosophy into its students' heads."

And it's not just that the public schools are failing. The entire premise of public schools is flawed and there is a pernicious agenda afoot that most are unaware of.

Schools are designed to undermine Judeo-Christian values, the family unit and structure, and revered traditions. In order to maximize the desired effect, it is imperative for the schools to isolate children from those things for the better part of the day, for the better part of their youth, while inculcating them with completely different values and attitudes.

Schools are designed to make children antagonists of their parents, their religions, their own cultures, and their local traditions. Schools beguile us into swearing allegiance to some distant ideal, and ideal which the powers-that-be would like us to believe is compulsory.

Bring your kids home. You may not think yourself the most qualified to teach your children, but you are the best one to do so. The state did not make you a parent, and no parent should abdicate the greatest responsibility they will ever be given in this life to an institution who sees our children as nothing more than cogs in a brave new world.

Anonymous Cash March 17, 2015 11:04 AM  

"Pointing out that not evangelizing is not evangelizing may be obvious, but it's not stupid. It would, admittedly, have been more clear if instead of "you're doing it wrong" they had said "you're not doing it at all".

The "let your light shine" theory of public school attendance is not Christian evangelism. It is ex post facto rationalization."

Point taken.

I agree that it is post facto rationalization. I was home educated and was interrogated by countless adults, in and out of the church, for years and often had people justify their own decision of sending their kids to public school with the whole "being a light" bs.

A five year old is not a missionary.

It is amazing to me how parents want to blame their church/youth pastor for not making their kids into little saints in the one or two hours a week they have the kids. It's almost like "their I dropped my kid off at youth group now I am a good parent."

I already have made it known that I am going to home school my kids so my 7 year hiatus of not having to defend myself everyday will soon be coming to an end. I am glad that you post on home schooling every so often as it provides a much appreciated support.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 11:08 AM  

I was home educated and was interrogated by countless adults, in and out of the church, for years and often had people justify their own decision of sending their kids to public school with the whole "being a light" bs.

A five year old is not a missionary.


How about THEY get their asses to prison. Easy to do, just preach the word aggressively enough to the right people.

Why not? Why aren't they a light to the world?

Anonymous Porky March 17, 2015 11:08 AM  

To be accurate, the Common Core standard distinguishes between "fact, opinion, and reasoned judgements."

But of course, if your definition of "fact" is wrong then the whole thing is a sham.

Blogger JDC March 17, 2015 11:09 AM  

I would be interested in hearing people's opinions on what they think evangelization is, or what is the best method to evangelize. I've always preferred the seed metaphor often found in scripture, as well as the "come and see" this Jesus method. Personally, I can't see sending your kids to school for the purposes of evangelizing the world as an effective method, but that's just my opinion. If you want your kids to be lights in a dark world, or yeast in a loaf of bread, there are other ways of doing this. I submit that subjecting them to the evil that lurks the halls of public schools is not one of them.

As Dr. Ian Malcolm once said, "What you call progress, I call the rape of the natural world."

Anonymous Anubis March 17, 2015 11:13 AM  

"so IMO this cuts both ways but much more beneficial to us if used against them"

quantity has a quality of its own.8 hours a day for 180 days a year for grades 1-12 is more time than working parents talk to their kids. Remember one of the truths being told is that its worse to cross the street when you see a pack of blacks than it is to be attacked by them.

"I believe that's supposed to be "light unto the pagans". But, y'know, that's just like my opinion, man."

Sounds as wise as the parents who sent their kids to Michael Jacksons house, there is a reason the left likes kool aid.

"raw tree ring data to anyone else.Do you think that if he did release his data that all of the skeptics would become believers?"
The more raw global warming data released the more people question the church of the AlGorean.

“I’m not a Catholic,” Gore said, “but I could be persuaded to become one.” as long as I have a position higher than the pope.

Anonymous Stilicho March 17, 2015 11:17 AM  

Meh, we already have a word for "false facts"... mistakes.

Anonymous DrTorch March 17, 2015 11:20 AM  

I would be interested in hearing people's opinions on what they think evangelization is, or what is the best method to evangelize.

I'm not sure there is a "best" method. Circumstances change, people have different gifts. Evangelism is explicitly called a spiritual gift, and in that context not all Christians have it. We're to make disciples, and there are other elements to that Commission besides evangelism.

Anyway, what worked for the Wesley's may not work for you. What worked for Jonathan Edwards may not work today. CS Lewis probably didn't hand out "Four Spiritual Laws" tracts, yet I believe he effectively evangelized.

Blogger JDC March 17, 2015 11:25 AM  

I'm not sure there is a "best" method.

Preferred is probably a better word.

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 11:28 AM  

"Again, I have stated several times that 'fact' and 'true' are not the same thing in the model." The fact that you felt the need to say "in the model" demonstrates the problem. That's not the way people usually speak. Not even you do, or you would not have added "in the model." It reminds me of Spinoza's philosophy. The terms in that work are so unusually defined that the words cease to have anything like their customary definitions.

Fact is not synonymous with truth, contrary to what you said above. Fact is synonymous with objective truth. Statements like, "Wind-surfing is awesome" may be true, but they are of limited value, i.e. opinions, because they represent subjective evaluations that hold no necessary implications for others.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 11:29 AM  

Fact is not synonymous with truth, contrary to what you said above. Fact is synonymous with objective truth.

In correspondence theory of truth, there is nothing other than objective truth. You are mixing up two theories, namely coherence theory and correspondence theory.

Blogger Josh March 17, 2015 11:29 AM  

What the hell happened to this thread and turned it into the After School Aspie Special?

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 11:30 AM  

Anubis March 17, 2015 11:13 AM
The more raw global warming data released the more people question the church of the AlGorean.



an opinion that addresses neither of wrf3's assertions.

Anonymous DrTorch March 17, 2015 11:31 AM  

Preferred is probably a better word.

I personally believe we have a creative God, and He there are many effective ways to proclaim the Gospel. The preferred way is to obey Him. (Although doing good works is called out in several epistles. So that worth considering.)

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 11:31 AM  

bob k. mando wrote: moving the goal posts.

Not at all. First, there are lots of cases where the exact same evidence is available to people who utterly disagree on what the evidence says. Second, Mann could release his evidence, and it wouldn't change a thing. Third, the econ case you provided doesn't help you. In that case, secret knowledge is being used to gain an advantage over an opponent -- not to convince an opponent as to what the evidence means.

Blogger Vox March 17, 2015 11:36 AM  

She had a lot of the typical issues, and improved dramatically in a few months by being at home and as a reward gave her a tablet. Then her mom happened to check her tablet one day and it was filled with lesbian porn.

The tablet wasn't the problem. I would guess that the seeds were already planted during her time at school.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 11:41 AM  

Foster wrote: Fact is synonymous with objective truth.

And how do you get to objective truth? That is, how do you take brains out of the picture?

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 11:47 AM  

"In correspondence theory of truth, there is nothing other than objective truth. You are mixing up two theories, namely coherence theory and correspondence theory." I don't recall making any reference to a particular theory. If my view is incoherent or impractical, the fruits of being "mixed up," please demonstrate the fact, as I have expressed my own misgivings regarding the practical applications of your "Everything is opinion" theory. I don't really care if it matches the orthodoxy of one commonly held theory or another. I care whether it works.

Blogger JartStar March 17, 2015 11:53 AM  

The tablet wasn't the problem.

There's a whole backstory I'm leaving out, but not even the school was probably the main issue here. My point is that homeschooling isn't magic, instead it can be one part of a bigger picture.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 11:53 AM  

I don't recall making any reference to a particular theory.

If you are going to criticize a model, you have to criticize it on its own merits. I specifically said: "It's the correspondence theory of truth. A view or claim is true if it corresponds with the world out there. Very unpopular these days."

You can't criticize a model that is explicitly stated to be a correspondence model, with a definition borrowed from coherence model. You can posit your own model that works from the alternative theory. But it's a competing model, not a criticism of the other.

However, your solution is the weirdest one I've seen. I have NEVER seen a correspondence proponent sacrifice the word "truth" to the coherence model. That should be the most sacrosanct word of them all.

Blogger Daniel March 17, 2015 11:54 AM  

FACT: Public school is a tax-payer funded concentration camp whose chief product is child abuse.

Anonymous Blastman March 17, 2015 11:54 AM  

There ABSOLUTELY are facts that are not true.

4. The assertion or statement of a thing done or existing; sometimes, even when false, improperly put, by a transfer of meaning, for the thing done, or supposed to be done; a thing supposed or asserted to be done; as, history abounds with false facts. [1913 Webster]

I do not grant the fact.
--De Foe.
[1913 Webster]

This reasoning is founded upon a fact which is not true.
--Roger Long.
[1913 Webster]


I think you're misconstruing the use the word fact here. They're using the word fact in the context of referring to someone else's claim or statement. When I say … "your facts are wrong", … I'm referring to your statements (claims) and what I'm saying is that they aren't really facts at all -- if a fact is viewed as an objective statement of reality. That's why 4. uses the word … "assertion." Fact, here, refers to these assertions.

Anonymous Huckleberry -- est. 1977 March 17, 2015 11:57 AM  

What the hell happened to this thread and turned it into the After School Aspie Special?

I don't know, but I blame Alpha Game

Blogger Noah B March 17, 2015 11:57 AM  

"And how do you get to objective truth? That is, how do you take brains out of the picture?"

You realize that our brains make mental models of the physical world, but that the physical world still exists regardless of the imprecision of our mental models.

Anonymous clk March 17, 2015 12:03 PM  

Josh says "What the hell happened to this thread and turned it into the After School Aspie Special?"

The exact thought I had as well ... what they hell are you guys arguing about here ?... This all started out with lots of potential and then quickly took a turn for the worse... What happened to the good old 45 vs 9mm threads ...

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 12:04 PM  

It may look like I'm participating, but you may note that I'm merely answering questions and arguments directed towards me, as is my responsibility, having made a claim. I ask no questions myself. Because I'm trying to get this to stop.

Anonymous anon1 March 17, 2015 12:13 PM  

"I don't know, but I blame Alpha Game"

plus Heartiste and (i hate to say it) ... John C. Wright.

basically that weird mix of "neoreaction" (whatever it is) that seems to draw aspie assholes like flies are drawn to shit.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 12:19 PM  

It does annoy, but I've seen forum stagnation, and it's a death spiral. People leave, new people don't come in. More people leave, and new people have even less reason to come in.

There is a sweet spot where just that amount of new people come in, that we can manage to ilkify. But this here is still better than the other alternative.

Anonymous RedJack March 17, 2015 12:22 PM  

cailcorishev:

We are very involved in our daughters school. My wife is a public school teacher (trying to do a reverse Gramsci,with some success), so she call BS pretty quickly. The school is small enough to keep control over, but good enough to be desired. There are a lot of working class kids there, and it generates quite a few baptisms of whole families. My concern is the principle wants to "grow". Right now, the core is Christ. If we grow, and if Iowa starts giving us money (something I am vocally against), that might change.

Anonymous Corvinus March 17, 2015 12:23 PM  

The exact thought I had as well ... what they hell are you guys arguing about here ?...

I just kinda tl;dr'd it out. But perhaps it was inevitable that a post on fact vs. opinion would end up like this.

The take I get from the OP is that Common Core is even more evil than I thought, although granted I never really bothered to learn that much about it. But a few years back, there was a case in Utah where kids were being given a book called "Voices" which actually trained them how to use emotionally-charged arguments to get what they wanted. After reading the bit about fact vs. opinion, I wouldn't be at all surprised if Common Core was doing the same thing.

Blogger Foster March 17, 2015 12:24 PM  

"You can't criticize a model that is explicitly stated to be a correspondence model, with a definition borrowed from coherence model."
I believe Mr. Wright, Salt, p-dawg and I criticized it by quoting you, asking questions and pointing out the absurd consequences, regardless of any models, which is (in my opinion) the best way to refute. I repeat, if my own view is absurd, by all means demonstrate its absurd consequences and I will alter my view accordingly, but I don't care about one theory or the other.

Blogger Josh March 17, 2015 12:25 PM  

I don't know, but I blame Alpha Game
...
basically that weird mix of "neoreaction" (whatever it is) that seems to draw aspie assholes like flies are drawn to shit.


I love you guys

Blogger Josh March 17, 2015 12:26 PM  

There is a sweet spot where just that amount of new people come in, that we can manage to ilkify. But this here is still better than the other alternative.

You're denying the magic of geography in both digital and physical realms?

Anonymous Porky March 17, 2015 12:27 PM  

"ilkify"?

Blogger IM2L844 March 17, 2015 12:30 PM  

Tangential niggling can be annoying, but it can sometimes be extremely entertaining as well. Some of the best quips are produced in this sort of environment. That reminds me...where the hell has Idle Spectator been?

Anonymous anon1 March 17, 2015 12:32 PM  

"ilkify"?

same argument as pro-immigration

Blogger Josh March 17, 2015 12:35 PM  

Tangential niggling can be annoying, but it can sometimes be extremely entertaining as well.

RACIS

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 12:36 PM  

I believe Mr. Wright, Salt, p-dawg and I criticized it by quoting you, asking questions and pointing out the absurd consequences, regardless of any models, which is (in my opinion) the best way to refute

Irrelevant. They were not that particular criticism which I said would be nonsensical. I specifically said that truth in this model was correspondence truth. Then you made a distinction between truth and objective truth, as a criticism of the model. But this is patent nonsense. There is no subjective truth in correspondence model. That is a concept that belongs to coherence model.

I repeat, if my own view is absurd, by all means demonstrate its absurd consequences and I will alter my view accordingly, but I don't care about one theory or the other.

I don't know yet if it is absurd, and I don't care. It is a competing model. Presenting a competing model is not criticism. To criticize a model, you have to show an internal incoherence in it. You cannot just borrow from a complete other theory, namely the coherence theory of truth, and use it against a model that is explicitly stated to be a correspondence model.

Blogger James Dixon March 17, 2015 12:36 PM  

I see some have taken except to John's statement: "First of all, EVERYTHING is an opinion." ... This statement, if true, is false. It disproves itself.

However, if the statement is true and everything is an opinion, then by definition the statement is a demonstrable fact, and is thus not an opinion.

An opinion can be a fact, yes. But a fact is not just an opinion.

> ...in other cases, 2 + 2 = 11

While true, that's a very basic statement. :)

> Dogs don't know that 2+2=4

Try putting out two food dishes for 4 dogs and watch them disprove your claim.

Anonymous anon1 March 17, 2015 12:37 PM  

"RACIS"


what a niggardly reply!

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 12:37 PM  

same argument as pro-immigration

Yes. Ilk women are not making enough babies for this to be self-sustaining. In this case, we DO need immigration.

Anonymous sawtooth March 17, 2015 12:38 PM  

The purpose of public school is to take the natural wonder, imagination, and spirituality of children, grind it out of them and then turn them into obedient, soulless, little biobots.

I wouldn't subject a dog to such atrocity.

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 12:38 PM  

wrf3 March 17, 2015 11:31 AM
First, there are lots of cases where the exact same evidence is available to people who utterly disagree on what the evidence says.


no one has asserted that this is not the case. in your specific example here, it is a case of disagreement about the logic used to evaluated the data.

which has nothing to do with the fact that hardly anyone has all of the same data as someone else, which was your assertion here:
wrf3 March 17, 2015 10:03 AM
After all, the evidence for X -- not matter what X is -- is the same for those who hold X to be true as it is for those who hold X to be false.



much less is there agreement about whether any specific 'evidence' has validity or should be disputed before you even get into evaluating the logic involved.


JartStar March 17, 2015 10:57 AM
Then her mom happened to check her tablet one day and it was filled with lesbian porn.

Vox March 17, 2015 11:36 AM
I would guess that the seeds were already planted during her time at school.



i'm not sure what's going on nowadays, but it does seem that some of these schools are doing an extremely effective job of socializing children to homophilia.

http://miamiherald.typepad.com/gaysouthflorida/2013/05/lesbian-18-faces-15-years-in-prison-for-having-sex-with-14-year-old-high-school-basketball-teammate.html

this is not the only lesbian relationship i've seen come out of Sebastian River HS, although the other was out of the rowing team.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 12:42 PM  

But a fact is not just an opinion.

How did that "just" get in there? You tried to smuggle it in, that's how. I said: "Even absolute facts are opinions. "

A fact, when stated, is all three in the model. It is an opinion, truth-claim and fact. There is no "just" in the model for facts. Only an opinion where no evidence is presented, but rather the person just runs away, is "just" an opinion.

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 12:43 PM  

Markku March 17, 2015 12:37 PM
Ilk women are not making enough babies for this to be self-sustaining.




nice shaming.

we'll make an Alpha out of you yet.

Blogger Corvinus March 17, 2015 12:45 PM  

Back to the OP: there was a case in Utah where schoolchildren are being trained how to purposefully use emotionally-charged words to get what they want. The series was called "Voices", IIRC. So this B.S. is sickening, but not in the least surprising.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 12:46 PM  

And why did you even see fit to add the qualifier "just"? If opinion is a view held without evidence, then the word is redundant.

Because it isn't, and you know it. An opinion can be just an opinion, or it can be an opinion, and something else. What else, James? It was your word.

Blogger Corvinus March 17, 2015 12:47 PM  

The purpose of public school is to take the natural wonder, imagination, and spirituality of children, grind it out of them and then turn them into obedient, soulless, little biobots.

I wouldn't subject a dog to such atrocity.


No. It's worse than that. The public schools are... SJW factories.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 12:49 PM  

Noah B wrote: You realize that our brains make mental models of the physical world, but that the physical world still exists regardless of the imprecision of our mental models.

I affirm the former, but the latter doesn't necessarily follow. We assume that's the case, and we may think that we have good reasons for believing it but, as the philosophers know, that's an opinion -- not a fact.

Blogger Corvinus March 17, 2015 12:52 PM  

I affirm the former, but the latter doesn't necessarily follow. We assume that's the case, and we may think that we have good reasons for believing it but, as the philosophers know, that's an opinion -- not a fact.

So if you stub your toe on a rock because you had neglected to put it into your mental model, does the rock in fact exist? Is your broken toe really broken? Does it actually hurt?

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 12:59 PM  

bob k. mando wrote: it is a case of disagreement about the logic used to evaluated [sic] the data.

But the logic is part and parcel with the evidence.

much less is there agreement about whether any specific 'evidence' has validity or should be disputed before you even get into evaluating the logic involved.

Right. You're just making my case for me. It isn't the evidence that convinces people.

which has nothing to do with the fact that hardly anyone has all of the same data as someone else, which was your assertion here...

I said that the evidence was the same; I didn't say that everyone had equal access to it. The quantity of evidence is the same, whether one particular person has access to it or not, or whether one particular person chooses to ignore it or not.

Anonymous MrGreenMan March 17, 2015 12:59 PM  

I remember when The Righteous Mustache came out against public schools. I believe that it is a fact that he said that it would be better to drop out as it would cause less damage. I believe that it is a fact that Free Republic melted.

Blogger bob k. mando March 17, 2015 1:00 PM  

dude, that's not even an ethos.

besides, how do you prove that his brain has the same evidence his toe has?

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 1:03 PM  

Corvinus wrote: So if you stub your toe on a rock because you had neglected to put it into your mental model, does the rock in fact exist? Is your broken toe really broken? Does it actually hurt?

First, assumes facts not in evidence, namely "because you neglected to put it in your mental model." Second, by "in fact exist" you mean "exists independently of one's mind." But that's exactly what has to be shown. The same is true for "really broken" and "actually hurt." Your brain thinks it hurts and your brain thinks that there's some reason for why it hurts.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 1:16 PM  

It sounds like I at least mostly agree with wrf3's position. I would however clarify that there are two categories of truth where it is not possible to be mistaken. One, there are tautological truths. Second, there are truths about the observer's own mind.

I am now thinking about a coffee cup. Could I be mistaken, and actually be thinking about a cow instead? No.

Anonymous Porky March 17, 2015 1:18 PM  

So what does it mean to be "ilkified"?

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 1:19 PM  

The non-ilkified man protesteth too much.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 1:22 PM  

We have a saying se koira älähtää johon kalikka kalahtaa = The dog that the stick hits, is the one that yelps.

Blogger Vox March 17, 2015 1:24 PM  

I don't know, but I blame Alpha Game

You have it backwards. I started AG in part to keep those primarily interested in matters socio-sexual out of the regular conversation. If I was still doing S-S posts here, it would be considerably worse. The main problem is midwitted Gamma males who think they score intellectual points by nitpicking something minor, and thereby derailing every substantive discussion into a trivial discourse on whether it is acceptable to say "always" when "usually" would be the more accurate term.

I let it go from time to time on posts like these, since there isn't really a lot to discuss. I mean, if you're still sending your kid to public school when you can afford an alternative, you're an idiot and you shouldn't be surprised when Bad Things Happen. There isn't a whole lot of room for discussion there.

Anonymous Porky March 17, 2015 1:24 PM  

Protest?

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 1:29 PM  

Of ALL the people here, how come it was you - our favorite whipping boy - who had to ask the question? Because the Ilk know they have been ilkified.

It was much better once, though. You had to pass Bane's muster. If you did, you were probably very ilkifiable. His death was the worst thing to happen to the forum, not AG.

Anonymous Blastman March 17, 2015 1:29 PM  

And how do you get to objective truth? That is, how do you take brains out of the picture?


There is a Christian philosophy course online (free to download) by Patrick W McCloskey - The Science of Logic that deals with the problem of knowledge and truth and how Christian philosophers dealt with this problem.

The Science of Logic -- A Course in the Formal and Material Principles of Right Reason


I've only skimmed a few sections of this, but it appears to deal (fairly early on) with this issue of how one deals with "objective reality".

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 1:39 PM  

If you were a Gamma, Bane would press your buttons until you ran away screaming for mommy.

Anonymous Porky March 17, 2015 1:41 PM  

Of ALL the people here, how come it was you - our favorite whipping boy - who had to ask the question? Because the Ilk know they have been ilkified.

You used a word. I asked you what it means.

And you start babbling in Finnish and riddles.

If you don't want to say then just say "I can't tell you cuz it's super top-secret" and we can forget the whole thing. Jeesh.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 1:41 PM  

I can't tell you cuz it's super top-secret.

OpenID cailcorishev March 17, 2015 1:43 PM  

When people talk about "improving the schools" and such nonsense, I tell them to compare government schooling with other government products that are provided to the masses, like government cheese or government housing. We expect government housing to provide the minimum -- a roof over your head, hot and cold running water, etc. At its best, that's what you're going to get from government schooling: the bare minimum of an education and not too much damage done. At its worst....

Thinking that public schools can provide a top-notch education is like thinking that government housing can (or should try to) provide each person with a 12-room mansion with in-ground pool.

Blogger Josh March 17, 2015 1:46 PM  

The main problem is midwitted Gamma males who think they score intellectual points by nitpicking something minor, and thereby derailing every substantive discussion into a trivial discourse on whether it is acceptable to say "always" when "usually" would be the more accurate term.

I think that a lot of those type came here from Heartiste or other "alt right" blogs via Alpha Game.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 1:53 PM  

I agree. If we still had our Kerberos at the gate, it would probably be manageable. But now that we don't, and there's that link to here at Alpha Game, the problem is twice as bad.

Blogger Noah B March 17, 2015 1:53 PM  

"And you start babbling in Finnish and riddles."

What are you complaining about? Markku was even kind enough to translate it.

Blogger Josh March 17, 2015 1:55 PM  

"And you start babbling in Finnish and riddles."

What are you complaining about? Markku was even kind enough to translate it.


I really hope y'all are rushing to finish this

Blogger Noah B March 17, 2015 1:57 PM  

Not to worry, I'm off for a fun filled afternoon of pointless meetings shortly

Blogger James Dixon March 17, 2015 2:13 PM  

> How did that "just" get in there? You tried to smuggle it in, that's how.

And I'd have gotten away with it too, if not for....

Actually, I'm merely phrasing your statements in a different way. See:

> A fact, when stated, is all three in the model. It is an opinion, truth-claim and fact.

I.e, there's more to a fact than there is to an opinion, thus a fact is not just an opinion. :) I don't think you're actually trying to argue that the two are in fact the same.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 2:16 PM  

Blastman wrote: I've only skimmed a few sections of this, but it appears to deal (fairly early on) with this issue of how one deals with "objective reality".

It isn't hard. You assume that something outside of, and independent of, our minds exists. But you don't have to make that assumption. Either way works and each results in a logically coherent system.

Anonymous Well March 17, 2015 2:17 PM  

Thinking that public schools can provide a top-notch education is like thinking that government housing can (or should try to) provide each person with a 12-room mansion with in-ground pool.

American public schools did provide a top-notch education, that was the envy of the world... at one time.

But that was a different America.

If you took the exact same teachers and curriculum from that time, and attempted to educate the multi-cultural, multi-lingual rabble of today, the results might look a little different. As for using the incompetent teachers and dumbed-down curricula of today to educate the multi-cultural, multi-lingual rabble, eh forget about it.

Socialism works fine with Scandinavians. With Somalians, not so much.

Blogger Corvinus March 17, 2015 2:18 PM  

I agree. If we still had our Kerberos at the gate, it would probably be manageable. But now that we don't, and there's that link to here at Alpha Game, the problem is twice as bad.

I propose that Scalzi's blog, or the online Pink SF sphere in general, is a more fitting suspect than AG. I haven't really noticed too many of the annoying Gammas on here also posting over there. There are plenty of trolls that pop up here, but the only real troll at AG in recent months I've noticed has been insanitybytes/GG.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 2:18 PM  

don't think you're actually trying to argue that the two are in fact the same.

I'm trying to argue that that they are subsets of each other.

-All expressed facts (verbally or in writing) are facts, truth-claims and opinions
-All truth-claims are truth-claims and opinions
-All opinions are opinions.

So, if someone asks me "Is that your opinion?", I respond "yes, and it's the right opinion." But if someone says "That's just your opinion.", I say "it's an opinion, but not 'just'. I'm ready to defend it if you want."

Blogger slarrow March 17, 2015 2:19 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger slarrow March 17, 2015 2:20 PM  

I've only been reading Vox for a couple of years, so I wasn't around when Bane was alive. For some reason, last week I clicked on the Bane Walks On link in the right sidebar and spent an hour or so reading Bane's blog over the last year of his life. Odd to miss someone I've never met. I think Louis L'Amour would have characterized him as "someone with the bark left on."

Anonymous Porky March 17, 2015 2:28 PM  

Weird thing is I actually was the leader of both #dreadilk and #gamergate and I STILL never got ilkified. Did get me banned from twitter, though.

Blogger dw March 17, 2015 2:34 PM  

"I really hope y'all are rushing to finish this"

I see what you did there.

Anonymous A.B. Prosper March 17, 2015 2:42 PM  

There really aren't moral truths, you can't bring a cup of morality and you can't make any of the supernal or supernatural claims of any of the religions manifest in any reasonably provable way . Its not a good thing to teach impressionable kids though.

That said, there are social customs which should not be broken which often reflect choices that improve perceived human happiness over the long term. Happiness BtW can be measured in chemical terms in the brain and often by brain scan so its real.

We should be teaching those customs since trial and error suggest they are the best long term approach.

What we are doing though is teaching though, the feel good ethos is at best foolish since it leads to bad results especially the majority of students being high time preference and middling to low IQ.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 2:43 PM  

Markku wrote: I'm trying to argue that that they are subsets of each other.

In your system, what promotes a truth-claim/opinion to fact status? Being able to defend something doesn't make it so. That you and I might agree on something doesn't mean that others will agree with us. So what's special about a "fact"?

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 2:48 PM  

A. B. Prosper wrote: There really aren't moral truths, you can't bring a cup of morality and you can't make any of the supernal or supernatural claims of any of the religions manifest in any reasonably provable way .

Of course you can. Morality is simply the evaluation of paths to/from goals. If the goal is to win a game of chess, you can say some moves are better than others. If the goal is reproductive success, you can say some strategies are better than others. The ultimate goals are life (which is a prerequisite for choosing all other goals) and death (from which no choices are possible). Once you pick one, there are a lot of things you can say about which choices are better than others. It's basic game theory/computer science.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 2:53 PM  

In your system, what promotes a truth-claim/opinion to fact status?

Democracy. Fact is when you can safely use it as a premise of an argument without being an asshole, because chances are so high that your audience also thinks it is true. Someone MAY still reject it, but you don't have to go out of your way to accomodate the mere possibility that someone might do so.

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 3:04 PM  

Weird thing is I actually was the leader of both #dreadilk and #gamergate and I STILL never got ilkified.

Because people here don't like you as a person. It is clearly visible in how you are consistently treated as someone who is out-grouped.

I don't know if this is because you are genuinely unlikeable, or if it is the result of a dysfunctional social dynamic in which you consider something as only worth saying if it's contrarian, because you are seen as one anyway, and then on the other hand everyone going "oh no, not Porky again, what is it THIS time?"

Which then makes the dynamic a little worse, and a little more certain to play out the same way the next time too.

Blogger Corvinus March 17, 2015 3:15 PM  

In your system, what promotes a truth-claim/opinion to fact status?

Democracy. Fact is when you can safely use it as a premise of an argument without being an asshole, because chances are so high that your audience also thinks it is true.


The problem with the democracy argument is that absurdities such as "gay marriage is good" may be thereby promoted to a "fact".

Blogger Markku March 17, 2015 3:16 PM  

That would be a category error. Value judgements are not facts even if absolutely universally accepted. Anthropogenic Global Warming is the better example. That could get to the level of false fact.

Blogger wrf3 March 17, 2015 3:23 PM  

Markku wrote: That would be a category error. Value judgements are not facts even if absolutely universally accepted.

Why? "This move is better than that move" can be both a value judgement and a fact. Just because large state spaces are hard (if not impossible) to search, doesn't mean that we can't make factual statements about aspects of the search.

Blogger Corvinus March 17, 2015 3:23 PM  

That would be a category error. Value judgements are not facts even if absolutely universally accepted. Anthropogenic Global Warming is the better example. That could get to the level of false fact.

Ok, I see now. Although, I didn't realize until reading this thread that there could even be false facts.

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