[ExI] extropy-chat Digest, Vol 55, Issue 2

Lee Corbin lcorbin at rawbw.com
Thu Apr 3 00:30:30 UTC 2008

Jeff, who is normally quite a nice guy, takes a very harsh line
all of a sudden:

> Mirco Romanato wrote
>>  So, you would substitute volunteers with conscripts
>>  and professional with amateurs?
>>  This also have a cost: political for the draft and political
>>  and economic for all the added deads due to a not
>>  professional and highly trained force.
> Your bias is effecting [affecting] your **logic**, such as it is.
> Volunteers or conscripts, they get the same training.  Neither
> can therefore be characterized as **amateurs**.

In theory, perhaps, and maybe your point would at this time 
naturally take place in practice. But the Korean War showed
how pitifully drafted soldiers can be---I suspect that indeed
the training of the more motivated "professional" probably
turns out to be more effective.

And of course, you realize that your *own* bias may be
affecting your logic if it's true that his is affecting his. (Actually,
it's not a matter of logic at all---see below.)

> In contrast, try this.  How intelligent can the "volunteers" be?  How
> would they compare, intelligence-wise, to the pool from which
> conscripts would be drawn?
> Full disclosure-wise regarding my own bias let me say that you'd have
> to be a fucking moron to volunteer for the army or marines right now.

My goodness! You can't be serious, or at least you must be
trying to speak figuratively. BTW, "moron" originated as
a technical term for very low intelligence, so literally it happens
that the U.S. at least never enlists morons. 

<skipping over many points that I don't have time to address>

>>  The NATO countries are forced to add more soldier in Afghanistan,
>>  because if the coalition fail there will be a political disaster for all.
> Says who?  Don"t attempt an answer, you're not qualified.

Why is he any less qualified that anyone else? It's necessary in my
opinion for us to, as Eliezer says, "trust content, not authority". 
In other words, the qualifications or presumed authoritativeness
of any speaker need not be held against what is said.

> The Kool-aid drinkers who absorb uncritically the view of those who
> lobbied the US into this mess, and want to keep the US there, and who
> have been brazen serial liars and comprehensively incompetent.

Well, I don't agree, and neither does some (unknown but non-negligible
people on this list).

> Anyone with a fragment of intelligence knew this years ago.  What's
> your excuse, Mirco?

You imply that those of us who disagree with you have not even
a fragment of intelligence?  What we have here is a conflict of 
visions, see Thomas Sowell's book, "Conflict of Visions" by an
admitted conservative, or  Jonathan Haidt's nice video


who is an admitted liberal.  They document what I've known since
I was twelve:  among those who have ideological differences, the
explanation is *not* that one side is morally corrupt, or stupid, or
less educated, or has worse judgment, or is less logical, or is more
rational, or anything of the sort.

The most that can so far reliably be said is that you contend that
the other side is *wrong*. And it is entirely possible to be absolutely
correct in so saying, though, of course, at this time we cannot
objectively establish who is wrong (or if any side is entirely right).

> I see, advising someone not to drive over a cliff is treason.  How
> many different kinds of fool can you be, Mirco?

The list rules explicitly prohibit such ad hominem attacks. Even a
quick superficial examination of your sentence here shows that, like
most other personal attacks, it has no redeeming content whatsoever.

> You should not be wasting the time of folks on the list, Mirco.  That
> could be better spent seeking and receiving professional help for you
> mental condition.

I really am disappointed, Jeff.  I've never heard you go over the edge
like this.  Please try to show respect, feigned or not, with those who
disagree with you.


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