Re: MD The Carousel of Faux Philosophy

From: Mark Steven Heyman (
Date: Mon May 23 2005 - 02:46:25 BST

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    On 22 May 2005 at 9:36, TFP wrote:

    Nothing I've read in the MD has ever been more hilarious than MSH's 4-page
    polemic purporting to prove that unless you read and/or agree with Noam
    Chomsky you cannot possible be considered a genuine philosopher.

    One of the many tactics employed by TFP is to deliberately
    misunderstand or misstate a point of contention in order to ridicule
    it. Often, as here, the point to be ridiculed is a complete
    fabrication. This tactic is sometimes referred to as the Platteral
    Shift, in honor of its inventor.

    The point made in my previous post, with ample evidence, is that a
    faux philosopher denigrates or ridicules someone else' contributions
    to philosophy, and then, when questioned, refuses to provide evidence
    and argument in support of his libelous opinions.

    Another variation of the Shift is to repeatedly ridicule the ideas of
    another and then, when asked for evidence, say "This is a forum
    dedicated to the work of Robert Pirsig. What does this have to do
    with Pirsig?" For example:

    "Howard Zinn is a Marxist and I don't believe anything he says."

    "What evidence do you have that Zinn is a Marxist?"

    "This forum is about Robert Pirsig, not Howard Zinn."


    "I don't believe any reports issued by anti-American organizations
    like Amnesty International or Human Rights Watch."

    "What makes you think they are anti-American?

    "What does this have to do with the Metaphysics of Quality?"

    And round and round he rides the Carousel...

    Best to all,
    Mark Steven Heyman (msh)
    InfoPro Consulting - The Professional Information Processors
    Custom Software Solutions for Windows, PDAs, and the Web Since 1983
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    "Tiger got to hunt, bird got to fly; Man got to sit and wonder 'why, why,
    why?' Tiger got to sleep, bird got to land; Man got to tell himself he
    understand." - Kurt Vonnegut, Cat's Cradle

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