Junk in My Trunk

I feel like I should write something today, but trust me when I say, the stuff I want to write about isn’t good, and the stuff I can write about is boring. Oh the dilemma!

So, let me just stick to stuff that is mildly interesting if you have any interest in me at all.

I finally went on a date, and that one date got out of hand. I don’t know what it is about me, but men seem to always get the wrong signals from me. I’m NEVER playing games, and if you’re finding me hard to catch, it’s because I am HARD TO CATCH. It takes time for me to decide if I want to invest so much of myself in a relationship, and if you don’t give me time to decide if I want to, the answer will always be no. Without Exception.

I’ve started a new job, as it would seem I’m prone to do, lately. I like it. It feeds a sense in me of helping other people, and I like the company I’m working for. However, I’m having issues with the company I left. They’re just bad people. I figured that out about a week into my employment with them, and each and every time I have dealings with them, or my friends have dealings with them, they prove without a doubt, the sun shines equally upon the good as well as the bad. Don’t get me wrong. I believe God loves justice, and they will eventually have a reckoning, but they do tend to irritate me. I will always wonder how some people can screw so many poor people over and still be able to look themselves in the face in the mirror.

My new job is rather far away, and I’ve been dealing with something new…traffic. I adore Austin! I really do! But, whoa, the traffic is crazy. It takes me 45 minutes daily to commute a mere 6 mile stretch on my way home. One deals with “break ins” by commuters who think their time is more important than the rest of ours, and break into the lines of traffic downtown, which of course, causes more traffic delays. I have yelled obscenities more than once at the careless vehicles that slam right between you and the car in front of you. It is a lesson in patience. I can promise you that.

All in all, life has taken on a routine, and even with the obvious political tensions and the sense that something spiritual is happening all around me, I feel peaceful. I’m on the right side of things, and I can rest in that knowledge. I hope all of your lives are feeling equally peaceful. 🙂

 

I guess all things considered, I have nothing to complain about. I’m happy. And that’s what we’re all looking for, right?

~Bird

 

Problematic Argument Styles Being Used These Days

101775-you-don-t-have-to-win-every-argument-agree-to-disagreeAbout a week ago, Rebekkah and I were talking about problematic argument styles and how pervasive they’ve become on social media because of this election. I thought it would be a cool subject to write about here but when I began to study the various fallacies, I realized two things. One, there are too many of them and two, they are rather boring. The list is here if you’re interested.

Instead, I’ll just write about a few really popular ways for people to disagree with each other on Facebook that is making my head hurt.

Distraction Fallacy

These days, you literally can’t voice any complaint about how Trump is running our government without someone pointing out something about Obama. This is called a distraction fallacy. This type of argument makes me nuts because a) I didn’t vote for Obama, and b) just because someone else did it, doesn’t make it right.

One way of winning an argument is to distract the person from the real point, leading them up the garden path of a side issue or something completely irrelevant to the real subject. The main argument may thus never be completed to a logical conclusion, especially if agreeing with the side issue can be substituted for the real agreement. courtesy of changingminds.org

For example:

Statement: President Donald Trump’s constant tweeting on Twitter about 412d25f78aeccf940a630c8e7a6137c5perceived wrongs makes him appear to be thin-skinned.

Distraction Fallacy Argument: Obama was was a self absorbed narcissistic racist who had no problem doing the same things you accuse Trump of.

Breakdown: One has nothing to do with the other. Maybe they were both thin-skinned. Maybe neither of them are. One statement does not add any proof whatsoever to the subject of the original statement.

False Dilemma Fallacy

The false dilemma fallacy is the assumption that you must choose A or B; that both statements can’t be true at the same time. False Dilemma Fallacy

raise-your-voiceFor example:

Statement: I believe America should help refugees from Syria.

False Dilemma Fallacy: You don’t care about our veterans more than helping refugees.

Breakdown: A person can easily care equally about refugees as well as veterans. In fact, a person with a generally caring nature will probably care deeply for all kinds of oppressed or neglected groups. It’s actually more probable than for the people who only care about the group they themselves belong to.

I hate this argument for so many reasons. Both of my parents were

Dad in the USMC
Dad in the USMC

Marines. I have a brother and sister that were in the Army, two ex-husbands that served in the Army, and my daughter is in the Air Force. Of course I care about our veterans! I also still think that we, as a rich, fat nation have enough resources we can comfortably share what we have with people from war-torn countries.

Appeal to Ridicule Fallacy

Mock and ridicule another person’s claim and argument.

Seriously, this one just amazes me. Instead of just presenting facts, and debating the merits of an argument, we just attack the person’s credibility instead.

For example:

its-hard-to-win-an-argument-with-a-stupid-person-but-it-is-impossible-to-win-an-argument-with-a-stupid-person-funny-quoteStatement: Trump lies a lot.

Appeal to Ridicule Argument: He’s not lying; you’re just stupid.

Breakdown: This argument is a way to bully someone into shutting up because you don’t have a defendable position. If the debate has disintegrated to the point that one person is calling the other one names, you’ve both lost.

Repetition Fallacy

This one is one of Trump’s favorites. If he says something enough, it will become true. If enough people believe something, it has to be true.

The repetition fallacy is when you say something often enough, and enough people pick it up and repeat it, it takes on a “truth”-like feel to it. Trump really relies on this method, as is evidenced on his many interviews, when he refers to “many, many people have said this”.

2016-08-13t22-54-09-9z-1280x720-nbcnews-ux-1080-600Statement: 3 million votes were cast by illegal immigrants in favor of Hillary Clinton. Not one of those fraudulent votes was for Donald Trump.

Repetition Fallacy: Because Trump said it many times on tv, and because I see it repeated over and over again on the internet and cable talk shows, it must be true.

Breakdown: A fact is simply a fact, and it doesn’t matter how many people believe otherwise, it does not change. If you’re being honest, you know — 3 million illegals did not vote for Clinton this past election.

Most people at one point believed the earth was flat. It’s always been round, no matter how many times people said otherwise, or how many of them truly believed it was really flat.

Conclusion

It’s probably silly to write a whole post on a subject that people probably d8999c751aecf3a354efc28b385aa1b5don’t care about, but I’m a nerdy intellect and I know there have got to be other nerdy intellects out there that are finding all of this kind of juvenile and unenlightened. I love a good, well-crafted debate. I really do, but I get disappointed when people use ineffective tools to argue their points.

So, to quote one of my favorite Facebook pages, Weird Nature:

There. That’s a thing you know now. 🙂

~ Bird