I'm slightly surprised at forum posters saying they arent interested in debates, or disagreements, why else would you post ideas if not to discuss them?
The problem is that people mix-up the modes of communication ... as Vince has pointed out as well, people seem no longer interested in proper conversation/discussion/debate, or, have forgotten/never learned how to.
If there is discussion, then there is bound to be disagreement because if there is no disagreement, then there is nothing to discuss. Disagreement 'forces' the claiming party to back up their (mere) claims with (sheer) substance. Handy no?
If people communicate, on forums as in 3d life, then they usually do so in four modes:
converse, discuss, debate, speculate-->philosophize, and each of those are distinguishable due to (their) specific characteristics.....
Conversation is about chit chat -- exchanging pleasantries; small talk; kaffeeklatsch and so on and so forth, 'home and gardening' stuff. :^)
Discussion is about agreement/disagreement (of opinions); yes or no -- mere (dis)agreement (of opinions) however, doesn't render anything less or more true/false. (Dis)agreement might tell us something about the one doing the (dis)agreeing, it tells us nothing whatsoever about the thing in (dis)agreement with. Believing 'your' opinion is right is mere confidence, believing 'your' opinion is fact is sheer arrogance. Discussion then, is a means of exchanging ideas; ideally a means to establish a consensus - not a mode to establish truth-value.
Debate is about addressing right or wrong; true or false (in relation to alleged/proposed fact/truth) -- we argue for or against by offering arguments (reason) of which its values are measured by a set of rules known as reasoning and logic -respectively the method and the tool to scrutinize the method- to determine whether the arguments (reasons) offered are (un)sound and/or (in)valid. If something is true/fact(ual), then it can be shown so (proven so) due to its axiomatic nature. If something cannot be shown true/fact(ual) (to be axiomatic), then we simply do not know it to be so and remains undetermined.
A problem arises if we mix up the latter two modes; when statement of opinion is deemed statement of fact and vice versa: when we say "I (dis)agree" while we mean "that is (not) true or when we say "that is (not) true" while we mean "I (dis)agree".
What matters in debate is whether the reasoning is sound; justifying the premises, and whether the argument form is valid; proper inference.
An argument that is deductive, valid and sound is an argument that ends up with a true conclusion, and there is nothing you, me, anyone, can do about it no matter how disturbing, how counter-intuitive, how emotionally unsatisfying the conclusion (is deemed).
is about conjecture; hypothesizing, philosophising at best -- anything goes (parallel/lateral thinking/reasoning) as long as proper inference is being applied because without it, speculation becomes 'fried air' since hypothesizing is meant to propose possibilities/probabilities in relation to a given (the subject matter).
And erm ... feelings do not think, thoughts do not feel, and the human brain can only comprehend three categories to put information in.
Note: If a deductive argument that is valid and sound does not end up with a true conclusion, then the problem does not lie with the argument.
rejected and denied by many, accepted and embraced by few : falsifiability
- it is not what we (think we) know that matters, it is what we can show true that does
as the maxim demands; truth is demonstrably fact and fact is demonstrably true
everything else ... mere BS -
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