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2nd Amend. Litigation Updates & Legal Discussion Discuss California 2A related litigation and legal topics here. All advice given is NOT legal counsel.

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  #521  
Old 08-16-2018, 9:12 PM
sarabellum sarabellum is offline
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Originally Posted by kcbrown View Post
The correctness of an argument does not depend upon authority.
The correctness of any proposition always depends on authority and evidence in all critical thought in all disciplines, be they science, law, or political philosophy. In the absence of authority the statement has no validity and is the origin for a false-hood. See CRC 3.113 (motions must contain a statement of facts, a concise statement of the law, evidence and arguments relied on, and a discussion of the statutes, cases, and textbooks cited in support of the position advanced. The absence of a memorandum is an admission that the motion or special demurrer is not meritorious and cause for its denial.)

The accuracy of any proposition, especially personal autonomy and the possession of arms by anyone, depends on evidence and authority.

Last edited by sarabellum; 08-16-2018 at 9:20 PM..
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  #522  
Old 08-16-2018, 10:02 PM
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Originally Posted by sarabellum View Post
The correctness of any proposition always depends on authority
No, it doesn't. Correctness of an argument depends on validity of facts and upon the correct application of logic to those facts. Authority often helps to establish validity of facts, but validity does not depend upon authority. This is so because a fact is ultimately an observable trait of that which the fact arises from.

One does not need citation to authority to establish, for instance, that (absent obscuring things like smoke) the cloudless day sky is blue, or that we are having this discussion, or that the Constitution contains a 2nd Amendment. Those things are true regardless of whether or not one cites an authority that states them.

But since you like citation of authority so much, let me give you this one:

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Fine Art of Baloney Detection
Arguments from authority carry little weight—“authorities” have made mistakes in the past. They will do so again in the future. Perhaps a better way to say it is that in science there are no authorities; at most, there are experts.
Since Carl Sagan was most certainly an authority in the world of science, and since science is the quintessential discipline of study and characterization of the real world, his characterization of the use of authority should carry great weight as regards arguments about the real world.


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and evidence in all critical thought in all disciplines, be they science, law, or political philosophy. In the absence of authority the statement has no validity and is the origin for a false-hood. See CRC 3.113 (motions must contain a statement of facts, a concise statement of the law, evidence and arguments relied on, and a discussion of the statutes, cases, and textbooks cited in support of the position advanced. The absence of a memorandum is an admission that the motion or special demurrer is not meritorious and cause for its denial.)
Legal arguments are a subset of arguments. While your assertion about the necessity of authority may be correct as to legal arguments, it is not correct in the general case. Here, we're not talking about a legal argument, we're talking about a real world one: the real-world effects of a social construct, and the implications of alteration of it.

The purpose for citation of authority is to make it clear where a stated fact originates. But that is only necessary if the fact is in dispute. So again, your insistence upon citation of authority hinges upon skepticism of my stated facts. So again, I ask: which facts that I have stated do you have skepticism of, and what is the basis of that skepticism?
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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  #523  
Old 08-16-2018, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by sarabellum View Post
The accuracy of any proposition, especially personal autonomy and the possession of arms by anyone, depends on evidence and authority.
And against what are you measuring in order to determine "accuracy"?

Think it through.
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.
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  #524  
Old 08-16-2018, 10:58 PM
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No, it doesn't.
One does not need citation to authority to establish, for instance, that (absent obscuring things like smoke) the cloudless day sky is blue, or that we are having this discussion, or that the Constitution contains a 2nd Amendment. [/URL]:
You must conduct research, provide evidence, and authority is you want go beyond superficial conclusory statements like those, especially in law and sociology.↑

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Originally Posted by kcbrown View Post
But since you like citation of authority so much, let me give you this one:

Since Carl Sagan was most certainly an authority in the world of science, and since science is the quintessential discipline of study and characterization of the real world, his characterization of the use of authority should carry great weight as regards arguments about the real world.
All informed study and research requires citation to authority. You offered Sagan as authority for systematic research (unwittingly). The notion that the "real" world is obvious is also a fallacy undermined by Sagan, whom you offer for a proposition he does not make- that physical science is a substitute for social thought:
But it can be much more dangerous than that, and when governments and societies lose the capacity for critical thinking, the results can be catastrophic—however sympathetic we may be to those who have bought the baloney.

What’s in the kit? Tools for skeptical thinking.

Among the tools:
· Wherever possible there must be independent confirmation of the “facts.”
· Encourage substantive debate on the evidence by knowledgeable proponents of all points of view.
· Arguments from authority carry little weight—“authorities” have made mistakes in the past. They will do so again in the future. Perhaps a better way to say it is that in science there are no authorities; at most, there are experts.
· Spin more than one hypothesis. If there’s something to be explained, think of all the different ways in which it could be explained. Then think of tests by which you might systematically disprove each of the
alternatives. What survives, the hypothesis that resists disproof in this Darwinian selection among “multiple working hypotheses,” has a much better chance of being the right answer than if you had simply run with the first idea that caught your fancy.
· Try not to get overly attached to a hypothesis just because it’s yours. It’s only a way station in the pursuit of knowledge. Ask yourself why you like the idea. Compare it fairly with the alternatives. See if you can find reasons for rejecting it. If you don’t, others will.
· Quantify. If whatever it is you’re explaining has some measure, some numerical quantity attached to it, you’ll be much better able to discriminate among competing hypotheses. What is vague and qualitative is open to many explanations. Of course there are truths to be sought in the many qualitative issues we are obliged to confront, but finding them is more challenging.
· If there’s a chain of argument, every link in the chain must work (including the premise)—not just most of them.
¶31.

All critical inquiry requires evidence and citation to experts in science and authorities in social science and social thought. Sagan does not propose anything different. The "obvious as the sky" and other non-pertinent analogies are the Social Darwinism supporting technocracy- that the group in power is justifiably in power because they have power, and that power is a sign of their virtue. There is nothing obvious in social organization. The sky may be blue but the reason it is blue is not obvious nor what or why a thunderstorm clouded the sky. The notion that "what you see is what you get" in Social Darwinism justifies any social ill, including disarmament.

The proper sources for confronting disarmament are not the physical sciences, which have nothing to say about relationships of power, but political thought and sociology. I gave you two examples- Hobbes and Burke- as the origins for the centralization of power and disarmament. The other sources for critical inquiry are Smith and Marx. Law only speaks to rules of administration. The relationship of law to power is the proper study of history, philosophy, and sociology. All are discrete disciplines. All require research, evidence, and citation to authority to prove validity for a proposition.

There is no substitute for the heavy lifting of research to support a proposition, especially when claiming a reason for popular possession of arms and confronting the "obvious as the sky" reasons for disarmament, "If you don’t, others will."

Last edited by sarabellum; 08-16-2018 at 11:21 PM..
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  #525  
Old 08-17-2018, 12:00 AM
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Default Nichols Vs. Brown update...

It occurs to me that you might be equating “well supported” with “correct”. Certainly, “well supported” is essential in a good legal argument. This goes a long way towards explaining your position. But nevertheless, they are not the same thing. I’ll elaborate on that in a follow-up message. I wrote what follows before I realized this.


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Originally Posted by sarabellum View Post
You must conduct research, provide evidence, and authority is you want go beyond superficial conclusory statements like those, especially in law and sociology.
Evidence and proper logic are mandatory. Your error is in insisting that authority is also mandatory. It is not. It is helpful, yes, but it is not mandatory. See below.


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All informed study and research requires citation to authority.
Is that so?

Tell me something: what makes a claimed authority an actual authority? Is it that authority's proclivity to cite other authorities? If so, where does the chain of authority end, and what makes the end of the chain an exception to the rule of the necessity for citation of authority?

If all propositions and facts must be backed by citation to authority, then so too must propositions and facts stated by authorities themselves.


To put authority into its proper place, answer this: if one is in possession of a repeatable real world observation that contradicts the claim of a citable authority, which wins, the observation or the authority? What if one creates a proposition with the repeatable observation as its basis? Is the proposition automatically invalid because it fails to cite an authority for the observation?


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You offered Sagan as authority for systematic research (unwittingly).
I offered him as an authority for that which science, and thus an argument about the real world, requires.


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The notion that the "real" world is obvious is also a fallacy
I never claimed that the real world is obvious. I claimed that the real world is observable, and that facts are those observations. But that much of the real world is not obvious doesn't mean that none of it is obvious, and it certainly doesn't mean that none of it is easily observable. Much of it is easily observable.

Conclusions drawn from those facts are not always obvious, of course, and sometimes one needs to be clever indeed in order to acquire the facts (a.k.a. observations) necessary to arrive at a solid explanation for something.


Quote:
undermined by Sagan, whom you offer for a proposition he does not make- that physical science is a substitute for social thought:
Since when did I claim that physical science is a substitute for social thought? Physical science ultimately makes it possible for us to determine with some degree of confidence what will happen in the real world. Social thought provides a means for us to determine what real-world outcomes we prefer, as well as a framework for analysis and refinement of those preferences. Those are two very different things, but in the end, the former must be used to achieve in the real world the preferences that come out of the latter, for the outcomes themselves happen in the real world.


Quote:
All critical inquiry requires evidence and citation to experts in science and authorities in social science and social thought. Sagan does not propose anything different.
What Sagan proposes is that citation to authority is worth little in and of itself and, indeed, is insufficient in and of itself. What the authority claims, if cited, must be independently correct.

Citation to authority may be useful when facts are in dispute or when there is uncertainty about them. Even then, such citation might not prove dispositive. But such citation is unnecessary when there is no significant uncertainty about the facts.

So once again, I ask, because you appear steadfast in your refusal to answer: which of the facts I stated are you skeptical of, and why?


Quote:
There is no substitute for the heavy lifting of research to support a proposition, especially when claiming a reason for popular possession of arms and confronting the "obvious as the sky" reasons for disarmament, "If you don’t, others will."
When that which is proposed rests upon something about which there is uncertainty, I completely agree. When that which is proposed rests upon something about which there is no significant uncertainty, i.e. everyone in the discussion agrees with the foundation of the proposal, then the research is superfluous and ultimately a waste of time. One does not do research to see if an object falls when dropped, or to see if a car generally covers ground faster than someone who is walking, or if the sun is a source of warmth. There are plenty of real-world observations that we all make every day upon which propositions can be based. To insist that those observations must have cited authority behind them in order to form the basis of a proposition is to insist upon an absurdity.
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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  #526  
Old 08-17-2018, 12:28 AM
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This is true of any right, including any protected speech, religion, unreasonable searches, etc., yet we do have prohibitions on waging jihad, DUI checkpoints, customs checkpoints, libel/slander laws and alike.

Just because there can be regulations doesn't mean any regulation is permissible. I don't see controversy there or in Heller.
I think you missed the "without substantial limits" qualifier on regulation.

Heller simultaneously stands for the proposition that the scope of the right (and, thus, that which is protected) is that which was understood by the founding generation and that (when read a certain way, at least) there are no real limits, short of a statutory ban, on the amount, degree, or nature of "regulation" of the right that is Constitutionally permissible. Those two propositions are contradictory.
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The Constitution is not "the Supreme Law of the Land, except in the face of contradicting law which has not yet been overturned by the courts". It is THE SUPREME LAW OF THE LAND, PERIOD. You break your oath to uphold the Constitution if you don't refuse to enforce unadjudicated laws you believe are Unconstitutional.

The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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  #527  
Old 08-17-2018, 7:28 AM
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It occurs to me that you might be equating “well supported” with “correct”. Certainly, “well supported” is essential in a good legal argument. This goes a long way towards explaining your position. But nevertheless, they are not the same thing. I’ll elaborate on that in a follow-up message. I wrote what follows before I realized this.



Evidence and proper logic are mandatory. Your error is in insisting that authority is also mandatory. It is not. It is helpful, yes, but it is not mandatory. See below.




Is that so?

Tell me something: what makes a claimed authority an actual authority? Is it that authority's proclivity to cite other authorities? If so, where does the chain of authority end, and what makes the end of the chain an exception to the rule of the necessity for citation of authority?

If all propositions and facts must be backed by citation to authority, then so too must propositions and facts stated by authorities themselves.


To put authority into its proper place, answer this: if one is in possession of a repeatable real world observation that contradicts the claim of a citable authority, which wins, the observation or the authority? What if one creates a proposition with the repeatable observation as its basis? Is the proposition automatically invalid because it fails to cite an authority for the observation?




I offered him as an authority for that which science, and thus an argument about the real world, requires.




I never claimed that the real world is obvious. I claimed that the real world is observable, and that facts are those observations. But that much of the real world is not obvious doesn't mean that none of it is obvious, and it certainly doesn't mean that none of it is easily observable. Much of it is easily observable.

Conclusions drawn from those facts are not always obvious, of course, and sometimes one needs to be clever indeed in order to acquire the facts (a.k.a. observations) necessary to arrive at a solid explanation for something.




Since when did I claim that physical science is a substitute for social thought? Physical science ultimately makes it possible for us to determine with some degree of confidence what will happen in the real world. Social thought provides a means for us to determine what real-world outcomes we prefer, as well as a framework for analysis and refinement of those preferences. Those are two very different things, but in the end, the former must be used to achieve in the real world the preferences that come out of the latter, for the outcomes themselves happen in the real world.




What Sagan proposes is that citation to authority is worth little in and of itself and, indeed, is insufficient in and of itself. What the authority claims, if cited, must be independently correct.

Citation to authority may be useful when facts are in dispute or when there is uncertainty about them. Even then, such citation might not prove dispositive. But such citation is unnecessary when there is no significant uncertainty about the facts.

So once again, I ask, because you appear steadfast in your refusal to answer: which of the facts I stated are you skeptical of, and why?




When that which is proposed rests upon something about which there is uncertainty, I completely agree. When that which is proposed rests upon something about which there is no significant uncertainty, i.e. everyone in the discussion agrees with the foundation of the proposal, then the research is superfluous and ultimately a waste of time. One does not do research to see if an object falls when dropped, or to see if a car generally covers ground faster than someone who is walking, or if the sun is a source of warmth. There are plenty of real-world observations that we all make every day upon which propositions can be based. To insist that those observations must have cited authority behind them in order to form the basis of a proposition is to insist upon an absurdity.

In the classic tradition, as opposed to the "garbage" tradtion we have nowadays...

To be respected to any degree as an "educated" person:

1. Have some ability to exercise logic - the art and science of sound reasoning.
2. Bring and apply experience or study of a subject of various degrees to the exercise of logic in a discussion.
3. Be aware of others when necessary who also apply experience or study into a discussion - and critique it - and be open to the same.

Under the classic tradtion, appeals to authority is by default a fallacy and always was considered suspect behavior - often used by snakeoil salesmen.

Under today's garbage tradtion - appeals to authority is not just practice - it is disquised as a "firewall" to control and limit debate - in particular access to a debate.

The peer review requirement often used as a "license" to access a debate is a perfect example.

It's an "appeal to authority" firewall designed to keep "certain" people out of a debate allowing them to be dismissed with a wave of a wand.

Never mind that is has already been shown that upwards of 80% of studies considered authoritative under "peer review" have been found to be seriously flawed and in some cases - simply made up.


As to Carl Sagan, be careful trying to use him as an authority. He was a popularizer and charlatan in science.

As a matter of fact, he had a history of participating in campaigns to destroy the reputation of another scientist or person with other ideas....sitting on their research or ideas for years - then suddenly using them himself.

Velokovsky is a perfect example....Sagan helped the campaign to discredit him - then started using his ideas only a decade later.

There's lots of charlatans in the world of academic and scientifc debate...government participation and funding certainly hasn't helped.

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  #528  
Old 08-17-2018, 8:38 AM
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Somebody is unaware of Incompleteness theorem.

Facts are not valid on their own.
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  #529  
Old 08-17-2018, 9:44 AM
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Originally Posted by mrrabbit View Post
In the classic tradition, as opposed to the "garbage" tradtion we have nowadays...

To be respected to any degree as an "educated" person:

1. Have some ability to exercise logic - the art and science of sound reasoning.
2. Bring and apply experience or study of a subject of various degrees to the exercise of logic in a discussion.
3. Be aware of others when necessary who also apply experience or study into a discussion - and critique it - and be open to the same.

Under the classic tradtion, appeals to authority is by default a fallacy and always was considered suspect behavior - often used by snakeoil salesmen.

Under today's garbage tradtion - appeals to authority is not just practice - it is disquised as a "firewall" to control and limit debate - in particular access to a debate.

The peer review requirement often used as a "license" to access a debate is a perfect example.

It's an "appeal to authority" firewall designed to keep "certain" people out of a debate allowing them to be dismissed with a wave of a wand.

Never mind that is has already been shown that upwards of 80% of studies considered authoritative under "peer review" have been found to be seriously flawed and in some cases - simply made up.
Unfortunately, I know of no good validation method, save for peer review, to weed out good science from bad. Done in good faith, peer review is a powerful tool for disposing of invalid findings and for revealing questionable ones that need further work. Repeatability of observation is vitally important, but the only way to verify that an observation is repeatable is to have multiple people attempt the same observation. That alone argues for some process like peer review. It's also useful for ensuring that the methods used to arrive at a conclusion were sound.

The problem is that the peer review process is also misused, leading to something that looks very much like arguments from authority.


Quote:
As to Carl Sagan, be careful trying to use him as an authority. He was a popularizer and charlatan in science.
A popularizer to be sure. I am unaware of any charlatan status on his part, but would be interested in references to evidence demonstrating that.

In any case, this is a clear demonstration of the danger of relying on authority for one's propositions.

A real-world proposition stands or falls on its own. The use of authority is necessary in law precisely because law is an arbitrary, manmade construct. There is no definitive standard of reference in law because of that, so authority is all you have.

But for real-world propositions, the real world itself is the definitive standard of reference. This is the realm in which science plays, and it is for good reason that observation is the litmus test of propositions in that domain. It is also for good reason that repeatable observation is what is sought, as there is no good way to distinguish between a false claim and a nonrepeatable observation.
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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Old 08-17-2018, 9:48 AM
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Somebody is unaware of Incompleteness theorem.

Facts are not valid on their own.
"Validity" as applied to facts is really just a shorthand way of saying whether or not that which is claimed as fact really is fact.
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.
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Old 08-17-2018, 11:08 AM
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...and that (when read a certain way, at least) there are ...
What if it's not read in that certain way? It seems that you allow for this possibility by including the qualification in parentheses, no?
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Old 08-17-2018, 11:18 AM
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Unfortunately, I know of no good validation method, save for peer review, to weed out good science from bad. Done in good faith, peer review is a powerful tool for disposing of invalid findings and for revealing questionable ones that need further work. Repeatability of observation is vitally important, but the only way to verify that an observation is repeatable is to have multiple people attempt the same observation. That alone argues for some process like peer review. It's also useful for ensuring that the methods used to arrive at a conclusion were sound.

The problem is that the peer review process is also misused, leading to something that looks very much like arguments from authority.




A popularizer to be sure. I am unaware of any charlatan status on his part, but would be interested in references to evidence demonstrating that.

In any case, this is a clear demonstration of the danger of relying on authority for one's propositions.

A real-world proposition stands or falls on its own. The use of authority is necessary in law precisely because law is an arbitrary, manmade construct. There is no definitive standard of reference in law because of that, so authority is all you have.

But for real-world propositions, the real world itself is the definitive standard of reference. This is the realm in which science plays, and it is for good reason that observation is the litmus test of propositions in that domain. It is also for good reason that repeatable observation is what is sought, as there is no good way to distinguish between a false claim and a nonrepeatable observation.

http://immanuelvelikovsky.com/Gould_Velikovsky.pdf

This covers only the campaign to destroy him during the period of 1950-1973? Not his theories or whether he was right or wrong - just the nasty campaign.

Go to page 45, look up the suggested reading as to Carl Sagan himself.

Also...we touched the topic of "peer review". IF YOU want to know where that came from, then by all means - read the first 44 pages . . . trust me . . . you'll be blown away.

Everything new is actually old...

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Old 08-17-2018, 11:22 AM
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Capability? Like the skull size test? If it were true (it is not), then the current social skewed order is precisely what you and everyone else wanted and ratified, including the judicial malfeasance.
I'm not quite sure you understand the link you posted.

If anything, it's a perfect example of how soft sciences try to emulate real science, but fall short because of the predetermined social justice outcome they are not willing to question.

Look at discussion of The Bell Curve - the refutals are based on the possibility of alternative explanations, not on establishing those alternative explanations. The authors claim that a study is false because (1) it doesn't agree with their preconceived idea of social justice, and (2) there is a possible explanation consistent with their preconceived ideas. That's anything but scientific. If neither side can prove it, the issue remains open, not "settled based on social norms."

The IQ debate is similar. We know that the early tests were flawed because they were mostly measuring education and familiarity with the local culture. However, with the newer tests, we either discard them as invalid, or we keep them and accept current results. What we can't do is at the same time claim that the tests are valid, while rejecting the outcomes that have but one flaw - that they don't match preconceived social justice conclusions. That's not science, that's anti-scientific social activism.
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Old 08-17-2018, 11:25 AM
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You must conduct research, provide evidence, and authority is you want go beyond superficial conclusory statements like those, especially in law and sociology.
I'll cite the authority using Social Science methodology.

It must be true from now on.
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Old 08-17-2018, 12:17 PM
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Evidence and proper logic are mandatory. Your error is in insisting that authority is also mandatory. It is not. It is helpful, yes, but it is not mandatory. See below.

There are plenty of real-world observations that we all make every day upon which propositions can be based. To insist that those observations must have cited authority behind them in order to form the basis of a proposition is to insist upon an absurdity.
The above are shorthand methods for avoiding the work of research. Research is time consuming. You claimed that "Since Carl Sagan was most certainly an authority in the world of science, and since science is the quintessential discipline of study" and characterization of the physical sciences "carry great weight," but now seem to back away from that contention, because Sagan's conventional demand of research, evidence, and citation is inconvenient.

There is no alternative to systematic research:
But it can be much more dangerous than that, and when governments and societies lose the capacity for critical thinking, the results can be catastrophic—however sympathetic we may be to those who have bought the baloney.

What’s in the kit? Tools for skeptical thinking.

Among the tools:
· Wherever possible there must be independent confirmation of the “facts.”
· Encourage substantive debate on the evidence by knowledgeable proponents of all points of view.
· Arguments from authority carry little weight—“authorities” have made mistakes in the past. They will do so again in the future. Perhaps a better way to say it is that in science there are no authorities; at most, there are experts.
· Spin more than one hypothesis. If there’s something to be explained, think of all the different ways in which it could be explained. Then think of tests by which you might systematically disprove each of the alternatives. What survives, the hypothesis that resists disproof in this Darwinian selection among “multiple working hypotheses,” has a much better chance of being the right answer than if you had simply run with the first idea that caught your fancy.
· Try not to get overly attached to a hypothesis just because it’s yours. It’s only a way station in the pursuit of knowledge. Ask yourself why you like the idea. Compare it fairly with the alternatives. See if you can find reasons for rejecting it. If you don’t, others will.
· Quantify. If whatever it is you’re explaining has some measure, some numerical quantity attached to it, you’ll be much better able to discriminate among competing hypotheses. What is vague and qualitative is open to many explanations. Of course there are truths to be sought in the many qualitative issues we are obliged to confront, but finding them is more challenging.
· If there’s a chain of argument, every link in the chain must work (including the premise)—not just most of them.
Sagan, Carl, "The Fine Art of Baloney Detection," ¶31.

Sagan above describes systematic inquiry. To claim "There are plenty of real-world observations that we all make every day . . . To insist that those observations" be supported with authority is absurd is simply to say assumptions and rumors about society are true. That the assumption must be true is Comtean positivism. "To Comte, however, applying the scientific method to social life meant practicing what we might call 'armchair philosophy'—drawing conclusions from informal observations of social life. He did not do what today’s sociologists would call research, and his conclusions have been abandoned." Fayeye, J.O., "Introduction to Sociology 1" (University of Ilorin, ISBN: 978-058-436-6, 2008), pp. 28.

The Constitution and social relationships of power are abstract thought. You cannot observe the 2nd Amendment nor the relationships of power underlying it from the armchair. Chemerinsky, Erwin, "Constitutional Law: Principles and Policies," (Aspen Law and Business, 1997), pp. XIX (Constitutional principles can and must be evaluated from a myriad of perspectives: issues of interpretation and how meaning should be given to the document; questions of institutional competence . . . normative visions of about the theories of government and individual freedoms; and in terms . . . of how doctrines affect people's lives . . .) "Real-world" observations is a short hand pretext for not engaging in critical inquiry and research, in particular with regard to arms and the Second Amendment.

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Old 08-17-2018, 12:47 PM
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The above are shorthand methods for avoiding the work of research. Research is time consuming. You claimed that "Since Carl Sagan was most certainly an authority in the world of science, and since science is the quintessential discipline of study" and characterization of the physical sciences "carry great weight," but now seem to back away from that contention, because Sagan's conventional demand of research, evidence, and citation is inconvenient.

There is no alternative to systematic research:
But it can be much more dangerous than that, and when governments and societies lose the capacity for critical thinking, the results can be catastrophic—however sympathetic we may be to those who have bought the baloney.

What’s in the kit? Tools for skeptical thinking.

Among the tools:
· Wherever possible there must be independent confirmation of the “facts.”
· Encourage substantive debate on the evidence by knowledgeable proponents of all points of view.
· Arguments from authority carry little weight—“authorities” have made mistakes in the past. They will do so again in the future. Perhaps a better way to say it is that in science there are no authorities; at most, there are experts.
· Spin more than one hypothesis. If there’s something to be explained, think of all the different ways in which it could be explained. Then think of tests by which you might systematically disprove each of the alternatives. What survives, the hypothesis that resists disproof in this Darwinian selection among “multiple working hypotheses,” has a much better chance of being the right answer than if you had simply run with the first idea that caught your fancy.
· Try not to get overly attached to a hypothesis just because it’s yours. It’s only a way station in the pursuit of knowledge. Ask yourself why you like the idea. Compare it fairly with the alternatives. See if you can find reasons for rejecting it. If you don’t, others will.
· Quantify. If whatever it is you’re explaining has some measure, some numerical quantity attached to it, you’ll be much better able to discriminate among competing hypotheses. What is vague and qualitative is open to many explanations. Of course there are truths to be sought in the many qualitative issues we are obliged to confront, but finding them is more challenging.
· If there’s a chain of argument, every link in the chain must work (including the premise)—not just most of them.
Sagan, Carl, "The Fine Art of Baloney Detection," ¶31.

Sagan above describes systematic inquiry. To claim "There are plenty of real-world observations that we all make every day . . . To insist that those observations" be supported with authority is absurd is simply to say assumptions and rumors about society are true. That the assumption must be true is Comtean positivism. "To Comte, however, applying the scientific method to social life meant practicing what we might call 'armchair philosophy'—drawing conclusions from informal observations of social life. He did not do what today’s sociologists would call research, and his conclusions have been abandoned." Fayeye, J.O., "Introduction to Sociology 1" (University of Ilorin, ISBN: 978-058-436-6, 2008), pp. 28.

The Constitution and social relationships of power are abstract thought. You cannot observe the 2nd Amendment nor the relationships of power underlying it from the armchair. Chemerinsky, Erwin, "Constitutional Law: Principles and Policies," (Aspen Law and Business, 1997), pp. XIX (Constitutional principles can and must be evaluated from a myriad of perspectives: issues of interpretation and how meaning should be given to the document; questions of institutional competence . . . normative visions of about the theories of government and individual freedoms; and in terms . . . of how doctrines affect people's lives . . .) "Real-world" observations is a short hand pretext for not engaging in critical inquiry and research, in particular with regard to arms and the Second Amendment.
Careful with Sagan...see my reply to KC Brown.

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Old 08-17-2018, 12:54 PM
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Careful with Sagan...see my reply to KC Brown.

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You are correct about Sagan. Sagan, despite his problems, accurately described systematic inquiry and research in the above cite. To get the nature of things, including the 2nd Amendment requires systematic inquiry.

Thank you for sharing the book, "Stephen J. Gould and Immanuel Velikovsky," addressing the cold war group think among scientists, campus and publisher suppression of the unorthodox view, and one scientific discipline's effort to censor Professor Velikovsky's two tests that, "could be performed as support for his theory: (1) That the Martian atmosphere "consists mainly of argon and neon" and (2) That "bands of gaseous hydrocarbon should be formed in the absorption spectrum of Venus," because they contradicted and "if found to be valid, scientists in a great many fields will have to change the underpinnings of their life's work." pp. 11, 32, 33. Profit motivations and midieval thinking taint many things. Id. pp. 34.

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Old 08-17-2018, 4:11 PM
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I will be damned. We brought Velikovski into this? Should we discuss science of Lawsonomy as it relates to the second amendment?
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Old 08-17-2018, 5:02 PM
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The above are shorthand methods for avoiding the work of research. Research is time consuming.
Yes, that is precisely what it's for: avoiding any unnecessary work of research.

Is your claim that research is always necessary in the construction and promotion of any and all propositions and any and all facts that such propositions may depend upon?


In what way does the insistence upon the citation of authority for the purpose of identifying facts differ from the insistence upon constructing a hierarchy of power for the purpose of controlling thoughts and/or beliefs?
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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Old 08-17-2018, 5:10 PM
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I will be damned. We brought Velikovski into this? Should we discuss science of Lawsonomy as it relates to the second amendment?
We didn't bring Velikovsky per se into the discussion, just used his history from 1950-1973 as an example of what happens when people are shut down using direct appeals to authority or by institutional polices that have the same effect rather simply examining things on the basis of logic, knowledge and experience and the evidence available for examination.

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Old 08-17-2018, 6:09 PM
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The above are shorthand methods for avoiding the work of research. Research is time consuming. You claimed that "Since Carl Sagan was most certainly an authority in the world of science, and since science is the quintessential discipline of study" and characterization of the physical sciences "carry great weight," but now seem to back away from that contention, because Sagan's conventional demand of research, evidence, and citation is inconvenient.
Where does Sagan demand citation of authority? I see plenty of demand for evidence, for consideration of alternative explanations, for attempts to determine ways that one's proposition might not be true, etc., but I see absolutely nothing in what he says that demands citation of authority. At most, he encourages debate amongst people who are knowledgeable, but that is not the same thing as an insistence upon citation.

Indeed, nowhere in that paper is there even a single mention of the term "cite" or "citation" or "reference" or "refer". It thus appears that this claim that Sagan insists upon citation of authority is one that is wholly made up by you.
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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Old 08-17-2018, 6:58 PM
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Where does Sagan demand citation of authority? I see plenty of demand for evidence, for consideration of alternative explanations, for attempts to determine ways that one's proposition might not be true, etc., but I see absolutely nothing in what he says that demands citation of authority. At most, he encourages debate amongst people who are knowledgeable, but that is not the same thing as an insistence upon citation.

Indeed, nowhere in that paper is one mention of the term "cite" or "citation" or "reference" or "refer". It thus appears that this claim that Sagan insists upon citation of authority is one that is wholly made up by you.
KC...seriously...

Read the link...drop down to page 45, at the end of page 45 is what you can search for in Google to get the material.

Basically...Sagan like so many establishment scientists...liked to talk about the virtues of science and good science...but was hypocrit...and participated in the attempt to destroy Velikovsky which of course included a demarcation of "authority". Not only that, he then proceeded years later to tout that which Velikovsky proposed - never mind it it was first labelled "psuedoscience."

We see this everywhere, firewalls in academics, engineering, law . . . that presume certain persons are THE authority (even if they're wrong) and certain people are not (even if they're right).

Anyone crossing one way gets ostricized, even to the point of losing a job or position, or someone crossing the other way is just flat out laughed at, ignored or rejected without any debate or examination.

We even see it here this very forum...heck...a certain thread did get refreshed the moment the Young decision was released.

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Old 08-17-2018, 7:33 PM
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Is your claim that research is always necessary in the construction and promotion of any and all propositions and any and all facts that such propositions may depend upon?

In what way does the insistence upon the citation of authority for the purpose of identifying facts differ from the insistence upon constructing a hierarchy of power for the purpose of controlling thoughts and/or beliefs?
Systematic research in science, law, or sociology is always indispensable for the purpose of developing informed thought as your reference to Sagan points out. Your proposed scientific method is no different than any other discipline: thesis, citation, evidence, and conclusion. When viewed closely, Sagan is now inconvenient to you. Research into the law is inconvenient for you and others, because it requires effort beyond the armchair. By evading your own discipline's call for systematic study, evidence, and support for those contentions, your assumptions remain unchallenged:
That insight, I believe, brings us a step closer to grasping the real nature of the Velikovsky Affair. It explains why the acts of Velikovsky's scientific detractors consistently belie their own words and ideals about science . . .

These are very unscientific acts [suppressing publication of Velikovsky's research] performed by very scientific people in defiance of their own scientific principles concerning such behaviour, and on the surface the dichotomy between what they did and what they said cannot be rationalized: these people consistently and irresistibly betrayed their own self-professed standards. They were intemperately, obliviously hypocritical.

I do not think, however, that they can merely be dismissed as hypocrites. On the contrary, most of them probably believed sincerely in the general concepts of fair play that they spouted. The problem, I think, is that they did not feel that these values were to be applied universally. One did have to be polite and fair and open-minded with fellow scientists because they had earned such treatment, being members of the right club, but one did not in any way owe the same treatment to a person like Velikovsky, because he was the enemy.
"Stephen J. Gould and Immanuel Velikovsky," pp. 34.

That is to say systematic study should not apply, when it challenges your conclusions regarding the state, power, and law, much like the Velikovsky affair, where an entire body of science worked to prevent the publication of his works, because they called into question years worth of research of others assumed to be true, i.e. "it's logical to assume" or "real world observation" without question. Unlike the Velikovsky Affair, I asked you to speak, "cite your evidence and support for your contentions." Your response summarized is anything goes without evidence or support, limited only by the blue sky. Having less information and less systematic study is an odd way of confronting the precise legal arguments and discourse of disarmament.

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Old 08-17-2018, 7:38 PM
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Systematic research in science, law, or sociology is always necessary for the purpose of developing informed thought as your reference to Sagan points out.
And what, exactly, do you mean by research here?


Quote:
Your proposed scientific method is no different than any other discipline: thesis, citation, evidence, and conclusion. When viewed closely, Sagan is now inconvenient to you.
Not really.


Quote:
Your response summarized is anything goes without support, limited only by the blue sky.
Incorrect. My response is that the degree of research required is dependent upon the facts in question and, especially, the degree of uncertainty around those facts. This is why I keep asking you which facts I stated that you disagree with. If there is no disagreement or skepticism as to the facts, then there is no need for the research you claim is required.


So: is it your contention that citation to authority is required in order to support every proposition and every fact?
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:39 PM
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"Stephen J. Gould and Immanuel Velikovsky," pp. 34.
What makes that book authoritative on anything?
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:52 PM
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What makes that book authoritative on anything?
Another tautology. You would have to read it and address it.
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:55 PM
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Another tautology.
You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.


Quote:
You would have to read it and address it.
Excuse me? You're the one using it as an authority, not me. It's on you to justify its use as an authority.
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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Old 08-17-2018, 7:56 PM
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Excuse me? You're the one using it as an authority, not me. It's on you to justify its use as an authority.
That is the ostrich defense.↑ You will not read it, because it requires effort- just the opposite of the systematic inquiry.
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:59 PM
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*sigh*

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Old 08-17-2018, 8:06 PM
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That is the ostrich defense.↑ You will not read it, because it requires effort- just the opposite of the systematic inquiry.
What makes you believe I will not read it? I said nothing about that (though I can see why you might come away with that impression). I asked you to justify your use of it as an authoritative reference, to which you told me to read it. How is my perusal of it supposed to do anything at all to indicate whether or not it is authoritative?

Is it really your approach to believe everything you're told by any source at all unless or until you discover you shouldn't?

You cited that book as an authority. That means you believe it to be an authority. Moreover, you cited it in the context of a debate, as support for your position. Why should I believe it to be an authority on anything, even after reading it?
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The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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Old 08-17-2018, 8:17 PM
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KC...seriously...

Read the link...drop down to page 45, at the end of page 45 is what you can search for in Google to get the material.
Page 45 of what? Of this? That is not the article I originally cited, which is what we've been debating about. The article I cited is only 7 pages long. If Sagan makes the claims that Sarabellum says he does, he does not make them in the material I referenced.

I don't disagree with you at all about the hypocrisy found amongst practitioners of science. That doesn't mean the methods of science themselves aren't sound if adhered to, only that practitioners aren't always perfect adherents to those methods.


In any case, this whole thing about Sagan should by itself make abundantly clear why the insistence upon the use of authority for arguments should be looked upon with distrust, since absolutely nothing prevents an authority from being incorrect. Similarly, nothing prevents a non-authority from being correct. Correctness is an attribute that can only properly be measured against the real world itself, and the real world doesn't give a crap about whether or not you're an authority on anything.


Ideas stand and fall on their own. That is no less true of the "baloney detection kit" described by Sagan than anything else. To insist that someone's ideas must be false because of a flaw in their character is no different than to insist that someone's statements must be true because of their exemplary character. There is but one proper arbiter of truth: the real world itself.


The evidence that the methods of science generally work for revealing the real world to us is to be found in the technological marvels we have constructed upon the discoveries that science has revealed. That does not excuse the hypocrisy that may be found amongst the practitioners of science, of course, but it at least reveals what can be achieved when the methods are followed.
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The Constitution is not "the Supreme Law of the Land, except in the face of contradicting law which has not yet been overturned by the courts". It is THE SUPREME LAW OF THE LAND, PERIOD. You break your oath to uphold the Constitution if you don't refuse to enforce unadjudicated laws you believe are Unconstitutional.

The real world laughs at optimism. And here's why.

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Old 08-18-2018, 9:09 AM
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Holy thread derail.
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Old 08-18-2018, 10:03 AM
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That is no derailment but a head on collision with Casey Jones at the throttle.
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