That is a fair point. I would assume that it is an issue that will have a noticeble difference on those involved, but not a catastrophic one if lost (no apocalypse, for example).
If it were something too open to debate, it would take away from the point.
The point is as stated. There is a non-zero probability it will happen, so you shouldn't use "certain", but any reasonable person will act on the belief it isn't going to happen.
If he used religion, which is also extremely unlikely to be correct, it would distract from the point.
There is a difference between a "tribe system" as mentioned by yourself and one person winning by submitting 1000 entries. The goal as I understand it is simply to maximize your score by whatever means possible, not accurately guess your opponents intentions.
I think the statement "the end doesn't justify the means" is somewhat silly in it's own right. While it would typically be argued in the sense that killing someone to improve someone else's life is not OK, for example, would the person dying not be equally a part of the end as the other's life improving? It seems more likely to result in double counting or a similar fallacy to try to separate an action into end and means in the first place, when everything already has an impact on the end in some way.
That said, the understood meaning is not the same as its literal value, and the meaning closer to how it is understood of "consider all the consequences of your actions" does have value.
It is very possible I don't understand this properly, but assuming you have knowledge of what strength of evidence is possible, could you start at 0.5 and consider strong arguments (relative to possible strength) as increasing the possibility and weak arguments as decreasing the possibility instead? With each piece of evidence you could increase the point at which weak arguments are viewed as having a positive effect, so numerous weak arguments could still add up to a decently high probability of the box containing the diamond.
For example, if arguments are rated in strength from 0 to 1, and most arguments would not be stronger than .5, my approach would be as follows for each piece of evidence:
Piece 1: Probability += (strength-.25)
Piece 2: probability += (strength-.22)
Piece 3: probability += (strength-.20)
I am of course oversimplifying the math, and looking at how you are approaching stoppage, perhaps this isn't actually effectively much different from your approach. But this approach is more intuitive to me than considering stopping a separate event on its own. If he is struck by lightning, as mentioned several times throughout this discussion, it is hard to view this in the same light as if he had stopped on his own as an independent event, but I am not sure the difference is enough that the probability of the diamond being in the box should be substantially different in the two cases.
Can someone clear up what issues there are with my approach? It makes more sense to me and if it is wrong, I would like to know where.
The first definition from google - Be successful or victorious in (a contest or conflict).
This is no different than I or most people would define it, and I don't think it contradicts with how I used it.
I think you're defining "winning" too strictly. Sometimes a minor loss is still a win, if the alternative was a large one.
I think your point that she took a lot of flak for it is evidence for the original point. The only other reasonable responses to that could have been changing her mind on the spot, or disputing the data, and neither of those responses would have brought similar backlash on her. Conceding weak points to your arguments in politics is often looked upon as a weakness when it shouldn't be.
I would assume that both groups have similar influence, but you can hand select ten near the most influential of the group you are convincing.
I would also assume those converted to a rational view would be relatively difficult to change back, while those swayed would be subject to the same biases you used to sway them in the first place.
Perhaps this was a foolish question, but even having my question picked apart is providing more for me to think about.