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Frostman



Posts: 29
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 26 2007,21:37   

This post is to document my recent banning at Telic Thoughts (telicthoughts.com).  Like here, my username there is Frostman.

It all started when Bradford quoted a recent NYT article by Paul Davies which caused some discussion.                            
Quote (Bradford @ TT)
Davies's editorial ends on a note that anti-theists find most discordant.                                                          
Quote (Davies @ NYT)
But until science comes up with a testable theory of the laws of the universe, its claim to be free of faith is manifestly bogus.
                                                       
Quote (Frostman @ TT)
However Davies wrote two important sentences preceding the above sentence:                                                        
Quote (Davies @ NYT)
In other words, the laws should have an explanation from within the universe and not involve appealing to an external agency. The specifics of that explanation are a matter for future research.
Davies was quoted out of context. What Davies says, in context, is most certainly something non-theists would support.
                                                     
Quote (Bradford @ TT)
What Davies is clearly inferring is that an element of faith underlies human endeavors and science is no exception. Anti-theists are notorious for their distortions of the meaning of faith and an insistence it must be blind. That is inconsistent with Davies' points. I've used the term anti-theist which you altered to non-theist. Their meaning differs.
                                                     
Quote (Frostman @ TT)
I changed anti-theist to non-theist because the former appears inflammatory. I try to cool the discussion whenever possible.

   The term anti-theist connotes an us-vs-them mentality; two opposing sides warring against each other. On the other hand, non-theist connotes a person who happens to disagree with theism.

   My apologies if you were being inflammatory on purpose.

This is where things get interesting.  Bradford deleted the above post.  The policy at Telic Thoughts is to move off-topic posts to a page called the "memory hole".  On-topic posts are not so moved, and outright deletion of posts is not done at all (with the exception of spam, etc).  In response he said,                                                        
Quote (Bradford @ TT)
Frostman, do not accuse and pretend an apology in the same sentence. As for what is inflammatory, I'll be the judge of that. If you think the blog entry is inflammatory you can always exit. I'll show you the door.

I inquired if he indeed deleted my post (as I did not know then).  After my asking a second time, he said yes.

Bradford then wrote a very angry post, which he soon deleted himself (instead of moving it to the memory hole per the policy, again).  It was interesting to see the outburst, and sadly only part of it survives in my response to it,                                                          
Quote (Frostman @ TT)
                                                             
Quote (Bradford @ TT)
If you're going to accuse me of quoting someone out of context (when I linked to the actual article) then have the integrity to respond to the actual wording I used.

The fact of the matter is that the Davies quote was clearly taken out of context. Non-theists and "anti-theists" alike would agree with Davies on the preceding sentences you clipped. There is nothing "most discordant" about them; indeed the contrary is true. It does not matter which term I use they are equivalent insofar as agreeing with Davies or not.

As I said, "anti-theist" sets the stage for an us-verses-them mentality, which is to be avoided. By pointing out the problematic quoting, I did not wish to inadvertently take the side of "anti-theists". That is why the term is inflammatory you are setting the stage for those who disagree to be on the "anti-theist" side. It's just modern-day tribalism.                                                        
Quote (Bradford @ TT)
You don't give a rat's behind about avoiding inflammatory language.

Wow, a double entendre with irony. What are your reasons for believing that?

Not surprisingly, this post was soon deleted (not moved to the memory hole).  I begin to notice other posts being deleted.  There were two by someone protesting the deletion of my posts --- deleted.  There were a few by keiths (another member of TT) saying that he witnessed the deletion of the posts --- deleted.  Keiths wrote a post which quoted the deletion policy at Telic Thoughts --- deleted.  I quoted my first deleted post --- deleted.  I asked Bradford if his behavior was appropriate in light of the deletion policy --- deleted.

It should be noted that Guts, another member of Telic Thoughts, said the memory hole was not working soon after the deletion of my first post.  Guts also said that he fixed it, and his test posts at the memory hole presumably demonstrated this to him.  At first this appears to be the reason why posts were deleted rather than moved.  However, the rash of deletions occurred after Guts fixed it.

Furthermore, the deletions happened before and after Bradford cheekily said, "Frostman, you're wrong. The memory hole works fine. :grin:"  As it was obvious these posts were being deleted rather than moved, it was indeed an impudent comment.  There are two of my posts currently in the memory hole; I suspect they were moved there by Guts before Bradford was able to delete them, as Guts mentioned that he moved some posts.

At this point, Bradford's posts which reprimanded me were present, but my posts to which the reprimands refer were deleted.  This left a clear impression that I somehow flew off the handle, when in fact my posts were entirely appropriate, if only the reader could see them.

I made a couple posts calmly inquiring about this fit of deletions, about whether Bradford's behavior was appropriate --- deleted.  The last post I made was,                                    
Quote (Frostman @ TT)
It is unethical to make accusations while deleting (not moving to the memory hole) the posts upon which those accusations are made, and also deleting (again, not moving to the memory hole) responses to those accusations. Do you disagree?

That, of course, was promptly deleted.  Soon after I obtained a forbidden message from the Apache server at telicthoughts.com, meaning my IP address was banned.  I confirmed this by successfully being able to connect to telicthoughts.com from an anonymous proxy.

Therein lies the tale of Frostman's adventure with Telic Thoughts.  If I were to speculate, I would cite the various times in which Bradford was cornered by my direct questions.  For example, in one thread, I asked the same question eight times and he would not respond, as the question clearly indicated he made a mistake in reasoning.  He eventually responded by warning me that I was trolling.

I must say Bradford's meltdown was interesting to watch.  He threw the Telic Thoughts deletion policy out the window while behaving quite dishonorably.  Apparently the motivation was to avoid losing face at all costs.  The light at the end of the tunnel is the cognitive dissonance he will feel as a result.  As all that dissonance adds up, he may eventually question those things he holds dear about himself.

  
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