Friday, March 11, 2011

Let me count the ways!

We learn by repetition. Repeat this as many times as necessary until you understand that, we learn by repetition.

Now it's not surprising that some people have learned that it is easy to manipulate others by 'thinking outside of the box', using the fact that we learn by repetition, against us.

Magicians do this all the time. We know that when someone picks up an object in his left hand, it is in his left hand, through countless instances of this being true.

Politicians, people who make commercials, lawyers, theists, philosophers and so on, know how to manipulate language in the exact same way, by using variations in the meanings of words, to their advantage.

These people know how you think, as sure as they know the next number you are going to say when you are counting numbers.

They know that how to twist the system is as easy as redefining words to suit themselves. A great example of this being the redefining the meaning of the word 'torture' to suit themselves when it suited them.

Eric, who comments on The Chronicles of Saint Brian the Godless, is a master of this kind of diverting tactics, one of his favourite tactics being to use the examples of how Moral Philosophy are not as cut and dried as we'd learned(by repetition) that morality is.

Of course it is disingenuous to piggyback your religion on the notion that you can argue against your victim's lack of understanding that morals are NOT as clear cut as we have learned they are, isn't it?

And understanding that morals are not clear cut betray this tactic as one of the 'chess openings'(if debate is seen as a kind of verbal chess) that apologists are willing to use to distract, confuse and defeat an opponent's ideas.

And it's all framed(as per Pliny's framing post) in such a way as to suggest that they're right, they know all, and their opponents are wrong, and they know nothing.