Truth at Any Cost?

[Holding Draft – in progress. Links and arguments incomplete.]

When people cling to the idea of truth at any cost, I often find they are either misguided or have a hidden agenda. Misguided as to what truth actually is, or in their applying it in support of a specific agenda only. Often the misguidance is merely in the irrelevance of an un-contentious non-fact to the priority issue at hand. Politics is pragmatism. Many so-called lies are selective interpretations of historical intent, or description of future events beyond easy control, for wishful or fearful reasons. Real life is rhetorical.

I have three (five, many) discussions on the go that stall at this point.

Mike Sutton wishing to pronounce Darwin was a liar. To which I ask why would you want to say that? And his response is to continue bang on about the evidence for why it’s a fact. Missing the point of the question.

Steven Knight (GS – Godless Spellchecker) arguing with a conspiracy theorist about the facts of a cause of death, to which I tried to point out that the specific “cause” of death was irrelevant to the guilt of the murderer and irrelevant to that fact that he was indeed a conspiracy theorist. Arguing with a conspiracy theorist about facts promotes the conspiracy theorist. Again GS continues to argue with me on the truth or falsity of one phrase I used – quoting the conspiracy theorist (on that one point, not the cover-up conspiracy) in order to make the point that it doesn’t matter whether it’s true or not. Missing the point.

Sputnik Steve wanting to damn an open ended list of teaching methods as entirely useless and reacting to my suggestion that some had some value – but were commonly misunderstood and misapplied to prescriptively.

And, beyond the three I had in mind when I started this draft there’s more:

@AOC making exactly my point that some focus too much on facts at the expense of the bigger picture. (To which opinion Mike Sutton responded ad-hominem and mis-construing my point, resulting in my blocking him.)

This Jamie Bartlett thread:

And finally adding to the “why call someone who tells an untruth a liar?”


[ Post Notes: More on the significance of lies and understanding the difference between “Rhetorical ‘lying’ in well-informed good-faith” and “‘careless’ bullshit”. Significant to this story particularly because Sutton avove invoked Harry Frankfurt’s definition of lying, without getting the point, unlike Kenan Malik and Jamie Bartlett (and @afneil ) who clearly do.


…. End, for now.]

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