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I tell people that their arguments are not persuading to third parties when they insult me, because I genuinely hope that they will change the way they argue, and also because I think it's generally true that insulting anyone does not tend to convince them. I'm personally not interested in being insulted, but I am interested in people arguing for their positions well, since if they are right, I'm interested in being persuaded.

I asked ChatGPT if it could pass the touring test, and it said it couldn't. It was clearly lying.

I've never seen anyone argue for that position. I'm sure there are people who think that, but they must be a small minority. I'm willing to be convinced that I'm wrong, though.

we should target our arguments according to the circles we find ourselves in

That's true, but I would also suggest that some arguments just don't need to be had. For example:

rather than jumping into extremely serious surgery blindly

I suspect this might be hyperbolic, but even so, this is not a position any actual person holds. Nobody who is in favor of transgender rights thinks that people should just "jump into extremely serious surgeries blindly." Repeating this framing of the problem in this way plays into the hands of people who are intentionally misrepresenting what the actual argument is in order to create division.

If you want to target your arguments to your audience, you should steelman the arguments you're targeting, otherwise you're just confirming their beliefs.

Not sure what the answer to the specific question is, but there is solid evidence that cleaning your hands prevents the spread of HFMD, Adoneviruses, E. Coli, Salmonella, and many other germs. Independent of the evidence for Covid in particular, regularly cleaning your hands is a great idea.

Doesn't your Maori massaclre example disprove the validity of virtue ethics?

"No, obviously. That would be monstrous."

This feels like begging the question. Why is it obvious that a doctor shouldn't kill one patient to save five? It seems like it is obvious because we have an overwhelmingly strong intuition that it is wrong. Given that there are many people who have an overwhelmingly strong intuition that being gay is wrong, I'm unsure if it's a good idea to just rely on that intuition, and leave it there.

Database normalization is just about avoiding duplication, right?

I think the thing here is that people who get database design can't really understand how it is possible to not get it, but there are a lot of people for whom it is extremely difficult to understand this topic. I sat through years of lectures wondering why we were taught things that were completely self-evident. Then I looked at a lot of other people's code, and it became clear that it wasn't self-evident at all.

"stripping away intellectual property protections without any compensation"

Isn't the AstraZeneca vaccine almost entirely financed with government funding? Even the ostensibly privately funded vaccines depend heavily on funding provided by taxpayers.

So as a taxpayer, not only am I funding the development of these vaccines, I'm also then funding government force to protect private monopolies on these vaccines. Regardless of the short-term implications of IP waivers, it seems clear to me that this is not a sound system, and that the incentives for creating these vaccines were strongly dependent on taxpayer funds, not by the possible long-term value of any IP generated by this research.

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