Saturday, 23 February 2008

An enquiry concerning the proper use of scientific arguments, wherein our author loses his sense of humour

My mate Eb remarked, re that last post, about flame wars starting when people tried to "fix" something "wrong" on the Web late at night ...

... and he might as well have been talking about me. There was a post last week at nothing new under the sun, which has since been buried under a pile of long comments from yours truly. Byron has occasionally gotten a word in edgeways.

The original post concerns a Jared Diamond article on agriculture; the (ahem) "discussion" concerns the sciences, myths, their nature, and the proper use of scientific arguments in wider disputes. My point, in part, is that there are limits to what counts as a fair argument, even if the cause in question is Really Really Important.

I am sensible of the irony (if not the absurdity) of trying to establish this point using an extended series of posts to someone else's blog.

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