torture from a legal standpoint, I ran across a now classic attack pattern:
Perhaps I missed it, but does Mr. Horton's campaign define what he thinks is torture? Its difficult to ban what one cannot define.Bart here seems to be the resident troll for the site. What I find so interesting is the response to this. Now mind you, this sight is hardly a bastion of mindless liberal tree hugging - there is all sorts of things that discussed that I violently oppose. But the discussion rests on the bedrock of rational debate and exchange. Let us focus on this argument though.
# posted by Bart DePalma : 7:50 PM
There are few readers out there who might miss this as a classic Socratic attack on the original author. You can not escape a philosophy class without at least reading the Apology which is darn near dripping with this stuff.
So why the hell do we fall for it every time? Like Charlie Brown kicking the gods dammed football being held by Lucy, we actually engage in a discussion about term definition completely moving the discussion away from the original topic all together. Again and again. This style of debate is used against the 'rational' wing of the left with devastating effectiveness. If you just repeat the question again and again ignoring or egging on the rebuttals (which are in themselves an effective way of turning the conversation), some dammed fool with just have to try to make adult like conversation.
Back in my community college days, I had an instructor who invoked 'Big Bob' as the blunt instrument of philosophical menace to instruct us about the potentially reckless power of rhetoric. Little did I suspect (lo those many years ago!) that the left had somehow not been inoculated against the Big Bob meme.
This ideology has taken hold and drives the direction of debate with the executive branch. Rule of Law has been corrupted because the language used to define the core elements (can you say torture?) has been corrupted. Response to this has been confused as is expected.
So lets take back the language of debate, ok?