Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

RobinZ comments on Explain/Worship/Ignore? - Less Wrong

38 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 02 September 2007 08:01PM

You are viewing a comment permalink. View the original post to see all comments and the full post content.

Comments (76)

Sort By: Old

You are viewing a single comment's thread. Show more comments above.

Comment author: RobinZ 20 January 2010 10:32:24PM 0 points [-]

I'm going to guess that Kennaway was criticizing argument by analogy, not rhetoric.

Comment author: RichardKennaway 20 January 2010 11:56:56PM 0 points [-]

Actually, I'm wary of any sort of rhetoric. The simple truth should be simply said.

Comment author: RobinZ 21 January 2010 12:31:13AM 4 points [-]

Simple speaking is harder to abuse, as Orwell noted in "Politics and the English Language", but I would prefer not to make a categorical ban on imagery. Not only is it aesthetically pleasing, a true metaphor (such as, I don't know, "the map is not the territory") is no less true because it is not literal. The problem lies when speech departs from reality, not in the fashion of speaking which does so.

Comment author: RichardKennaway 21 January 2010 01:19:42AM 9 points [-]

On further consideration, I have changed my view of this. Even simplicity can be a rhetorical device, and for its use by the Dark Side, just look at any political advertisement. The thing to be wary of is language that sounds like an argument without actually being one.