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User Journal

Journal Chacham's Journal: My journal 7

Hmm... what to write? It isn't a problem of not having what to write, the problem is in choosing what to write. There are a few topics that I want to write about like (hmm.. forget that, that mere mention will cause the comments to be placed here).

Why do I want to write these? Well, first and foremost, it does my ego a lot of good. I am confident of my opinions. Not that they are correct. Just that I have them, that they are worthy of having, and believing in until proven to be incorrect. Though, whether I'm enlightening you, or you're enlightening me, the comments are good. A record that attests to thoughts on some subjects, and can even shed light to those who want it to, is a good thing.

Sometimes, I guess, I write out of wanting to share. It can be a silly story, that I'll enjoy seeing other people enjoy. Like a good joke to pass on to a friend. Then there's the areas where I want to challenge taboos. In the rare case, I want to learn something.

I have a specific way of understanding things. I argue things to their bitter end. But why is it called "bitter"? Well, to me a good argument is exhilirating. However, to my great dismay, I am in the underwhelming minority. I find that most people don't want to argue. And those who do want to argue want to do so only on their terms. And those who will forgo on their terms, will only go in-as-far as it is perceived (by them) to be practical. And those who are willing to go all the way, do not seem to reap enjoyment from it. In fact, there are many who will never argue with me again because of that. Thus, I think it is "bitter".

To those in my person-to-person (verbal) arguments who won't go all the way, I say "good riddance". Not that I dislike them, but rather, that my purpose in arguing is to get to the fine points. If people don't go that far, I don't want to argue with them anyway.

It is a bit different here. First, writing tends to be a better forum for argument, as opinions are formulated, written, and hopefuly re-read. Also, earlier comments can be gone back to. They are "on record". And, as mentioned earlier, other people can come by and read them. So, even if the comment is lost on the people it was directed to, the comment is hardly wasted.

A question I have regarding all this, is, "do people want the writer to follow up?" Is it, that someone posts a journal, someone posts a comment on that journal, and each has said their piece? Or, does the commenter *want* the writer to comment on the comment?

Personally, I want people to answer my comments. It bothers me when I am left dangling. It bothers me even to not know if the other person agrees or not. For that reason alone I would follow through on comments in my journal entries. But, there is yet another reason. In an almost altruistic sense, I cannot stand to see falsehood left alone. Much as I cannot easily pass by a puzzle with the very last piece sitting out, I cannot easily pass by (what I perceive to be) falsehood withough setting it straight. Alas, not everyone agrees with me as to what is false, so I sometimes remember to stop myself. I wonder, though, what others see my followups as. Do they want them? Are they annoyed by them? Do they do nothing other than artifically inflate the number of comments on the journal entry? I even wonder on the journal entry themselves, if people are answering me only with the hope that I never brought up the issue in the first place.

One thing that does bother me in these journals, is when people start an off-topic thread. Some may think that all journal entries are good place for most comments, though I don't. So, in my journal entries, as a request, please keep all comments on topic. In the case where an old journal entry allows no more comments, I would hope that the person writes a journal entry about it, with an optional link to the earlier entry.

We each have our own styles of arguing. We each have our own methods of choosing our "truths" or "beliefs". We each have our own journals and comments. I ask you to comment on mine. Please. I may not (read: probably won't) agree with you, but I will hopefully learn from it all. (I plan not to comment, in this journal entry, in response to anyone's comments in this entry.)

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My journal

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  • I think it's because at the crux of every arguement, people are trying to get the other people to see and accept their point of view.

    If neither side will budge, there's no point in arguing.

    That's my take anyway.
    • True, that's the only reason a lot of people see for arguing. The problem with that is, in those situations, one person's a winner, the other is a loser. Such arguements can be difficult on long-term friendships.

      Me, I prefer to argue, not just to "enlighten" the other person, but to enlighten myself. Sure, sometimes I know that I am in possession of certain facts or a point of view that they might not have, and I think knowledge shared is a valuable thing. But more importantly, I want to know why they think the way they do, and I want their challenge to examine why I think the way I do. My favorite arguement-discussions have been ones where both I and the other person(s) have reached a conclusion which is somewhat different than what either of us was thinking in the beginning. My very best friends tend to be people who will argue with me in this way.

      My purpose in arguing is not to make the other side budge. I want to know if there's anyone else out there who can make me budge.
  • by memfree ( 227515 ) <memfree @ y a h o o . c om> on Wednesday January 15, 2003 @08:35PM (#5091330) Homepage Journal
    those who do want to argue want to do so only on their terms. And those who will forgo on their terms, will only go in-as-far as it is perceived (by them) to be practical.

    Doesn't the above also imply that you want others to argue on your terms? I agree that too many people don't place enough value on a good argument, but I'm wondering if some potential candidates felt that when they conceded a point of style, they were asked to give up more points, and didn't feel they were getting an equal reciprocation for whose rules controlled the court.
    • i read your post, and it prevented me from posting a redundant comment.

      also, some people can discuss points and get out the finer details without making it an argument. this doesn't work with all combinations of participants. among those that can, it still doesn't work all of the time. but some people would also rather discuss than argue. a person who argues with me usually gives the impression to me that they are either already convinced that i am wrong or that they are not listening to me. a person discussing with me makes me feel like listening more because i feel like what i have to say also matters.
    • I guess you can also argue about the terms of argument - come to think of it, this does happen.

      Arguing can be an engaging 2(+)-person game, like chess. But argument, in moderation, can also add flavor to conversation and friendship. Usually when I post it's to have a conversation about an obscure topic that interests me, and I don't mind a little argument if it happens.

      • I hear what both of you are saynig (that is, both subgeek and Shorespirit). Conversation and discussion do not have to be arguments. I don't mind any of them. I think of arguments as competitive discussions. They tke more energy than a conversation, but sometimes that can be fun.

        Personally, I find that text-only arguments are harder than voice-based arguments because it is harder to express that though you are battling over planks in your platform, you don't bear animosity for your opponent.

        When people actually want to hurt their opponent rather than disprove their position, I call that a fight or a shouting match or a flame, but I don't consider it an argument.
        • interesting, seperating completely between arguments and fights. sounds probably right.

          I don't see why a total stranger would imagine you had personal animosity toward them.

Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards. -- Aldous Huxley