[FoRK] (no subject)

jbone at place.org jbone at place.org
Mon Mar 15 18:58:23 PST 2004

"International Man of Mystery" JR asks:

> What do you want me to do, give my own personal analysis?  Go to the
> website and fetch your own numbers and kill some time -- bls.gov.  My
> only point was that, after reading the actual statistical work, it was
> obvious that none of the talking heads (or you) actually had read it or
> attempted to grok it, nor has any non-political analysis of the numbers
> been made as far as I can tell.

James, what I'd like is very simple.  I'd simply like for you ONCE to 
offer something other than an argument from dubious authority, stated 
ponderously with conviction and obscured / obfuscated with handwaving.  
If you'd like to refute some analysis or statement in something I or 
somebody else posts that you disagree with, please do so;  it's only by 
reasoned argument that any of us learn anything at all.

If you have a point that you disagree with --- refute it with facts, 
with data, with reasoning!  That'll earn you some whuffie chits.  Or 
refute it by reference to somebody else's authority --- no whuffie 
there, but at least you don't sound like a puffed shirt.  At least then 
you won't look the kind of jackass whose M.O. you so pointedly 
described, which, indeed, looks very much to me like a summary of your 

> when I point out that there are significant discrepancies between that 
> position and the underlying documents of authority upon which your 
> dubious source is nominally based, that's just handwaving or 
> something?

No, it's handwaving to claim that there are such discrepancies without 
stating *what they actually are.*

I doubt, James, on the basis of repeated history, that you have even 
looked in depth at the data you referred us to.  The sources I cited 
could be well be slanted, spun, wrong;  there could be such 
discrepancies.  I haven't done a particularly detailed analysis, but 
then, my point in this (as I've explained ad nauseam) is that the 
memewar itself is interesting.  But I very, very seriously doubt that 
you've done the homework or even that you've got the depth and rigor to 
come up with any such discrepancy.  You've never demonstrated it.

If you demonstrated such depth or rigor in even a SINGLE INSTANCE, then 
some of us who are currently disinclined to accept ANY of your 
arguments from authority alone might change our stance.  But given that 
the chance of you actually stepping up to the plate and doing this is 
equivalent to the proverbial snowball's chance in hell, I remain,

Your perpetual skeptic,


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