Critical Thinking vs. Ad Hominem Argument

  1. Philosophy Forum
  2. » General Discussion
  3. » Critical Thinking vs. Ad Hominem Argument

Get Email Updates Email this Topic Print this Page

Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 03:42 am
One of the tenets of critical thinking is the adoption and subsequent delinquency of the Ad Hominem argument. The concept of espousing the details of an argument or claim by an individual, and yet somehow be insulated from personal evaluation by the intended audience appears to be created within the realm of careless consideration born from idealistic propensities. The Ad Hominem attack as a legitimate rhetorical tool is vitally important for the bases of the counter-argument. Upon close examination, the Ad Hominem attack should be a required component of the vetting process, and any serious evaluation demands the process of this consideration. The idealistic endeavor of uncoupling the messenger from the message is mundanely pathetic, and quite simply impossible. While most of the logical fallacies are built on consistent and rational critical thinking, the Ad Hominem argument FAILS the critical thinking test.
 
hammersklavier
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 08:04 am
@Ruthless Logic,
Heidigger? Bush? Men are capable of both good decisions and ill decisions. The weakness of ad hominem is that it inflates the ill decisions and simultaneously weakens the good ones. That is why we ought to criticize on the bases of ideas, rather than personality.
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 08:38 am
@Ruthless Logic,
Ruthless Logic wrote:
One of the tenets of critical thinking is the adoption and subsequent delinquency of the Ad Hominem argument. The concept of espousing the details of an argument or claim by an individual, and yet somehow be insulated from personal evaluation by the intended audience appears to be created within the realm of careless consideration born from idealistic propensities. The Ad Hominem attack as a legitimate rhetorical tool is vitally important for the bases of the counter-argument. Upon close examination, the Ad Hominem attack should be a required component of the vetting process, and any serious evaluation demands the process of this consideration. The idealistic endeavor of uncoupling the messenger from the message is mundanely pathetic, and quite simply impossible. While most of the logical fallacies are built on consistent and rational critical thinking, the Ad Hominem argument FAILS the critical thinking test.


I have to say that this is an argument you cannot win. I say this without malice, but not only do I not agree with you, I also have very little respect for your opinions on these matters.

If your logic turns out to be sound in all other manners (and really you don't use any logic, just restate the same proposition several times over), I can still reject it for the simple fact that I have found you to be wrong on most philosophical matters.

As for your actual opinion, suppose both I and Michael Dummett make the same argument against the validity of the ad hominem. If we make the same statements, how can it be possible that one argument can be true, while one false?
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 09:08 am
@Mr Fight the Power,
Ruthless Logic wrote:
One of the tenets of critical thinking is the adoption and subsequent delinquency of the Ad Hominem argument. The concept of espousing the details of an argument or claim by an individual, and yet somehow be insulated from personal evaluation by the intended audience appears to be created within the realm of careless consideration born from idealistic propensities.
Ruthless Logic wrote:
The Ad Hominem attack as a legitimate rhetorical tool is vitally important for the bases of the counter-argument. Upon close examination, the Ad Hominem attack should be a required component of the vetting process, and any serious evaluation demands the process of this consideration. The idealistic endeavor of uncoupling the messenger from the message is mundanely pathetic, and quite simply impossible. While most of the logical fallacies are built on consistent and rational critical thinking, the Ad Hominem argument FAILS the critical thinking test.
 
Ruthless Logic
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 03:28 pm
@Mr Fight the Power,
Mr. Fight the Power wrote:
I have to say that this is an argument you cannot win. I say this without malice, but not only do I not agree with you, I also have very little respect for your opinions on these matters.

If your logic turns out to be sound in all other manners (and really you don't use any logic, just restate the same proposition several times over), I can still reject it for the simple fact that I have found you to be wrong on most philosophical matters.

As for your actual opinion, suppose both I and Michael Dummett make the same argument against the validity of the ad hominem. If we make the same statements, how can it be possible that one argument can be true, while one false?



First, my arguments are carefully developed and evaluated (won) before they are displayed in written composition. Second, your claim of restatements are laughably ironic, given that 70% of your post is comprised of this accusation, which indicates to me that you do not know what restatement means, and consequently my rejection of your verbage based on a rational and efficient evaluation of your personal capacity. Lastly, your careless paradoxical illustration is simply guilty of being a FALSE ANALOGY(logical fallacy). If an argument is presented identically, along with replicated encased claims, yet differing consensus is measured amongst the intended audience only indicates a wide range of quality receptors(natural world constraint) were present, and does not detract from the logical objectivity or validity of the presented argument.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 06:11 pm
@Ruthless Logic,
http://www.philosophyforum.com/forum/members/videcorspoon/albums/vide-s-forum-awards-outstanding-achievement/521-logic-monkey-sez-fail-awarded-outstanding-logical-reasoning-philosophy.jpg
 
Catchabula
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 07:24 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 08:44 pm
@Ruthless Logic,
Well Catchabula... I guess if you consider an ad hominem a divergence from the context of a given debate, I suppose that story was right on.
 
Ruthless Logic
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 09:17 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
VideCorSpoon wrote:
http://www.philosophyforum.com/forum/members/videcorspoon/albums/vide-s-forum-awards-outstanding-achievement/521-logic-monkey-sez-fail-awarded-outstanding-logical-reasoning-philosophy.jpg



The only ironic confluence to occur is your own confabulation of understanding. Clearly, MFTP demonstrated his own accurate impression of the dubious accusation of the Ad Hominem Argument, which we both concurred. It just that his critical thinking is less refined, consequently exposing him to repeated attacks of credibility.
 
Ruthless Logic
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 09:19 pm
@Catchabula,
Catchabula wrote:



I want my 35 seconds back. Enough said!
 
Catchabula
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 10:43 pm
@Ruthless Logic,
It has just dawned to me that I have interrupted a valuable and constructive duscussion with a stupid and irrelevant story. Thanks for pointing it out. It will not happen again.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 11:13 pm
@Ruthless Logic,
Ruthless Logic wrote:
The only ironic confluence to occur is your own confabulation of understanding. Clearly, MFTP demonstrated his own accurate impression of the dubious accusation of the Ad Hominem Argument, which we both concurred. It just that his critical thinking is less refined, consequently exposing him to repeated attacks of credibility.

LOL! My own "confabulation of understanding?" Seriously??? Is it my discombobulating perniciousness that vexes you? LOL! And how would my statement be ironic within the context in which it was put forward? LOL! How profound we think we are! LOL!

But I have always found it interesting that when it comes to these comments, the person usually never addresses the previous comments which actually propel the discussion. Personally, I think it is because they are incapable of answering them so they initiate some sort of ad hominem remark as a last ditch effort to save face.

But on a serious note, I don't think it is wise to throw insults at other members and not take serious concern for your own deficiencies. And believe me, saying that Mr. Fight the Power's critical thinking abilities are less refined is the least of your problems considering that the only argument you have been able to put forward is an extremely problematic argument for validating personal attacks. Even better than that, I think there comes along that rare person that congratulates themselves (i.e. your post #5) for a job well done before the discussion has even gone half way through its span where you state;
Ruthless Logic wrote:
First, my arguments are carefully developed and evaluated (won) before they are displayed in written composition.
 
Holiday20310401
 
Reply Fri 30 Jan, 2009 11:55 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
A true critical thinker will not have to resort to the ad hominem in order to find ways in persuading the other. However, the ad hominem seems logical to me, it's about following statistics, not necessarily an immoral prejudice.

In understanding the psychological reasons behind certain beliefs, is that not ad hominem? Or do I have to blurt it out?
 
Ruthless Logic
 
Reply Sat 31 Jan, 2009 01:57 pm
@Holiday20310401,
Also, I don't understand why you would negate your entire argument by saying "the ad hominem argument fails the critical thinking test" when you were supporting it for 95% of you post. Would you not want to say it passes the test?
Quote:




My initial post was comprised of 6 sentences. EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM attacking the credibility of the ad hominem accusation, yet you process the sequential flow of information 180 degrees from static reality(the post), and you want me to consider your responses with any seriousness when you have carelessly and utterly failed the reading comprehension component of the claim. Until this woeful mishap is reconciled, and some form of measurable credibility can be reestablished, the discussion CANNOT move forward.

P.S. This situation clearly offers how the ad hominem is a required process and efficient rhetorical tool for detailed evaluation.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Sat 31 Jan, 2009 02:11 pm
@Ruthless Logic,
Ruthless Logic wrote:
This situation clearly offers how the ad hominem is a required process and efficient rhetorical tool for detailed evaluation.
Isn't rhetoric at complete odds with critical evaluation?

Rhetoric is the art of persuasion.

A critical analysis in logical terms should lead to a given conclusion irrespective of rhetoric. In other words, it should be immune to ad hominem.

Plato and Socrates continually lambasted the Sophists because they thought that rhetoric was more or less a logical abomination.

So I completely agree with you that ad hominem is useful for rhetorical purposes, i.e. the art of persuasion.

But that's a pretty Machiavellian way of coming to a consensus. Logical discourse is the opposite, because the object is to ascertain the truth, not to convince.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Sat 31 Jan, 2009 03:13 pm
@Aedes,
Ruthless Logic,

Ruthless Logic wrote:

My initial post was comprised of 6 sentences. EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM attacking the credibility of the ad hominem accusation, yet you process the sequential flow of information 180 degrees from static reality(the post), and you want me to consider your responses with any seriousness when you have carelessly and utterly failed the reading comprehension component of the claim. Until this woeful mishap is reconciled, and some form of measurable credibility can be reestablished, the discussion CANNOT move forward.

P.S. This situation clearly offers how the ad hominem is a required process and efficient rhetorical tool for detailed evaluation.
against
Ruthless Logic wrote:
One of the tenets of critical thinking is the adoption and subsequent delinquency of the Ad Hominem argument. The concept of espousing the details of an argument or claim by an individual, and yet somehow be insulated from personal evaluation by the intended audience appears to be created within the realm of careless consideration born from idealistic propensities. The Ad Hominem attack as a legitimate rhetorical tool is vitally important for the bases of the counter-argument. Upon close examination, the Ad Hominem attack should be a required component of the vetting process, and any serious evaluation demands the process of this consideration. The idealistic endeavor of uncoupling the messenger from the message is mundanely pathetic, and quite simply impossible. While most of the logical fallacies are built on consistent and rational critical thinking, the Ad Hominem argument FAILS the critical thinking test.
really
 
Ruthless Logic
 
Reply Sat 31 Jan, 2009 08:46 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
Quote:




WHAT? You cannot be serious, right? You actually reread the post and only come up with plausible deniability for my assertions. At this time, I would like to borrow a quote from Tony McAuliffe, a famous WWII General "NUTS".


P.S. Once you acknowledge your utter misunderstanding, I will address your problematic claim pertaining to the ad hominem attack.
 
Kolbe
 
Reply Sat 31 Jan, 2009 09:06 pm
@Ruthless Logic,
You do realise you are arguing about arguing? Just thought I'd say...
 
Aedes
 
Reply Sat 31 Jan, 2009 09:11 pm
@Ruthless Logic,
RL, I've gone back and looked, and to be honest I'm not sure what your position is. The writing is unclear. It looks like you're disparaging it as a logical tool but celebrating it as a necessary evil.
 
JLP
 
Reply Sun 1 Feb, 2009 12:02 am
@Aedes,
RL, it sounds like you are making a McCluhanesque assertion-- that the medium is the message and, through argumentation, the person positing the argument is the medium and therefore the message?
 
 

 
  1. Philosophy Forum
  2. » General Discussion
  3. » Critical Thinking vs. Ad Hominem Argument
Copyright © 2021 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.02 seconds on 10/20/2021 at 07:24:28