Logical Rudeness

Created by Pw201 at 2y

Suber goes on to say that rudeness does not imply falsehood, and in fact, to insulate yourself from criticism on the grounds that your opponent is rude is itself rude. He goes on

In the post Logical Rudeness, Yudkowsky broadened the term to examinedescribe other offenses against the competing normscooperative flow of debate: wedebate, which might wishbe "logically rude" even if spoken politely; for example, saying "X because Y", and then, after one side went to allow people freedoma great deal of trouble to holdtest and falsify Y, saying, "Well, Y doesn't really matter, really X because Z". Similarly, ignoring all the diligent work that evolutionary biologists did to theories, including those which are rude, but we also wish debatesdig up previous fossils, and insisting you can only be satisfied by an actual videotape, is "logically rude" because you're ignoring evidence that someone went to move forwards.a great deal of trouble to provide to you.

The primary type is probably the application of a theory of justified dismissal, such as a theory of error or insanity, to critics and dissenters. Another major type is the interpretation of criticism as behavior to be explained rather than answered. This is closely connected to the type that refuses to see a meta-level in the critic's criticism, and will not allow critics to escape the object-language of the theory... All the types have in common an evasion of a responsibility to answer criticism on the merits, when that evasion is authorized by the theory criticized. All types are triggered only by expounded criticism, and only insulate the proponent from conversion or capitulation, not the theory from refutation.

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A term originating in the philosopher Peter Suber's essay Logical Rudeness. What Suber calls logical rudeness is a response to criticism which insulates the responder from having to address the criticism directly. Suber comes up with a taxonomy of logical rudeness:

The primary type is probably the application of a theory of justified dismissal, such as a theory of error or insanity, to critics and dissenters. Another major type is the interpretation of criticism as behavior to be explained rather than answered. This is closely connected to the type that refuses to see a meta-level in the critic's criticism, and will not allow critics to escape the object-language of the theory... All the types have in common an evasion of a responsibility to answer criticism on the merits, when that evasion is authorized by the theory criticized. All types are triggered only by expounded criticism, and only insulate the proponent from conversion or capitulation, not the theory from refutation.

Suber goes on to say that rudeness does not imply falsehood, and in fact, to insulate yourself from criticism on the grounds that your opponent is rude is itself rude. He goes on to examine the competing norms of debate: we might wish to allow people freedom to hold to theories, including those which are rude, but we also wish debates to move forwards.

Blog posts

  • Logical rudeness, in which Eliezer Yudkowsky broadens to the term to encompass other ways of breaking the flow of discussion, not just those which involve theories of justified dismissal.

See also