Show me your table

Topic's posts
Posts in total: 7
This is the Table Metaphor for a Rational Conversation. (TMFRC)

Imagine if you will, two people in a room.

They both bring with them a table with some number of legs.

The first person says, here's my table, it has six legs, please let me know if you see any problems.

The second person says, here's my table, it has nine legs, please let me know if you see any problems.

The two people then examine the tables and if there's a structural problem with one of the legs, they point out the problem and give the other a chance to modify or repair the flaws.

If a leg is fundamentally flawed it must be removed from that table.

If either table has fewer than three legs, it can no longer function as a table and that person will have to go back to the drawing board and come up with a (possibly similar) but better table.

Perhaps both tables will stand, and perhaps both tables will fall.

However, if one table stands and the other falls, there is absolutely no obligation for the person with the fallen table to adopt the design of the table that didn't fall.


However, imagine that one of the two people decides to employ an argumentum ad ignorantiam. -

Person (a) says, here's my table and it has seven legs.

Person (b) says, I don't like any of those legs because they look strange (ad hominem).

Person (a) says, perhaps they look a little strange to you, but they do a perfectly good job of holding up my table, can you please explain, if you believe they don't support my table, what specific -structural-problem- can you identify?

Person (b) refuses to answer this question and instead says, my table is better and therefore your table is wrong (bald assertion, argumentum ad lapidem, false dichotomy).

Person (a) says, what table are you talking about, you haven't shown me your table. AND more to the point, even if your table is "perfect" it does not make my table "wrong". You still need to explain any structural flaws you are able to identify.

Person (b) says, well, it's difficult to describe my table but it is waaaay better than yours, so yours is wrong. I saw a table like your once and it was so dangerous it fell over and killed a bunch of people and made babies cry. (false dichotomy, emotional appeal, bald assertion, strawman, affirming the consequent, and argumentum ad baculum).

Person (a) says, that's not really how this works. You have to show me your table.

Person (b) says, my table is round and has like nine million legs (bald assertion).

Person (a) says, can you be a little more specific?

Person (b) says, YOU CAN'T PROVE MY TABLE IS WRONG (argumentum ad ignorantiam).

Person (a) says, what table are you talking about? It is obviously impossible for me to point out structural flaws in a table that either doesn't exist or that you refuse to show to me or that you only explain in ridiculously vague terms.

Person (b) says, I can't be bothered to show you my table because you could never understand it (ad hominem, argumentum ad ignorantiam).

Person (a) says, if you can't (or won't) show me your table and at least three legs, I think this conversation is over.

--> @secularmerlin
Person (b) says, I don't like any of those legs because they look strange (ad hominem).
I'd say, "Person (b) says, I don't like any of those legs because they look strange (appeal to ambiguity which is an appeal to ignorance)".

And then perhaps, "Person (b) says, I don't like any of those legs because YOU look strange (ad hominem)".

I've been thinking about ad hominems lately, and it stands to reason that since Ad hominem is Latin for "to the person", then BOTH personal compliments, flattery AND insults would seem to qualify as "to the person" Ad hominems.

It would seem to be inconsistent to allow positive personal details to bolster an argument unless you also allowed negative personal details to discredit an argument.
--> @3RU7AL
Well this thread is getting about as much attention as I e expected it too. Those who understand what the story means have little to add and those who do not or who are being purposely obtuse are generally unwilling to absorb the message as it would be detrimental to their arguments. 
--> @secularmerlin
You got what you expected then.

--> @secularmerlin
Right, I almost forgot.

So I've got this table,

It all started with,

"Dubito ergo Cogito ergo Sum".

I doubt (my perception is not 100% accurate due to Hume's infinite regression problem (the problem of induction), my perception cannot verify itself).

And doubt is direct and verifiable, undeniable, un-doubtable, logically-necessary evidence of a functioning mind of some undetermined, undeterminable, size/shape/scope (per Godel's incompleteness theorems, a system cannot fully know (contain all knowledge of) itself).


Some Sum-total of my mind, along with and including any conceivable integral prerequisites and necessary incidental aspects (beyond my epistemological limits) EXISTS with 100% certainty as a fundamental, foundational logical-necessity (NOUMENON).

I guess that's just a description of the wood I built the thing out of...

Please let me know if you see any problems.
--> @3RU7AL
I see no problems with your construction materials.
Here is my entry into the times tables foray.

They are referenced to a circle and, two dynamic moving circles of changing size, that, result also produce a fractal.

So the next question is, does shape matter? Yes it does have and effect, in some ways and not  in others.

If we begin with a square shape, then our results will be a differrent pattern in that it will have more lumps the less circular that it is.