Friday, January 29, 2010

How Dave Armstrong Has Violated His Own Inconsistent Standards

Dave Armstrong continues to put up posts complaining that I haven't responded to enough of his material (here and here, for example). I and others have repeatedly pointed out the irrationality and inconsistency of Dave's standards and his failure to abide by those standards himself. See, for example, here.

Dave acknowledges that he's ignored some of my articles that have been written in response to him over the years. He wrote:

It's true that I chose not to respond to two of Jason's shorter replies. (one was merely a short introduction; big wow). That was my choice, and people make those choices all the time. But when I do respond, I do so properly and respectfully, by dealing with the complete argument of my opponent, and not ignoring 88% of it, including major points and often the very heart (or aspects closely related to the heart) of the argument of my opponent. If an argument is made, I reply to it, and show exactly why I reject it, and I also usually offer what I think is a superior alternative.

But he did reply to part of one of those "shorter replies", so his partial response to that article is an example of his failure to abide by his own standards. And I've given him other examples of partial replies he's posted in response to me. Here's his revised standard in a more recent thread:

One must understand the key distinction between how one participates in a discussion as it is in process and how one decides to stop participating in one (for what could be many good and perfectly legitimate reasons).

Apparently, what Dave was saying was that it's acceptable for him to post a partial reply to me, in which he only interacts with a portion of what I said, as long as he does so as he's concluding his end of the discussion. So, he believes that it's acceptable for him to:

- Ignore entire posts written in response to him.

- Ignore portions, including a large majority, of posts in an ongoing discussion, as long as his partial response is coming at the end of his participation in the discussion.

But does Dave even abide by those standards? No, he doesn't. He recently claimed that he "cited 100% of Jason's words in all six of my recent lengthy replies to him." Yet, if you go to one of those six articles, you see Dave commenting:

I will pass over comments where there is no particular disagreement, for space' sake.

And if you go to that thread to which he was responding, you can see that Dave did "pass over" many of my comments, neither quoting them nor responding to them. Much of what I wrote there was in response to an Eastern Orthodox poster, but not all of it was. Some of my comments were written in response to David Waltz, for example, when he was still a Catholic. And much of what I said in response to the Eastern Orthodox poster has some relevance to Catholicism and my own arguments on the subjects under consideration. If Dave is going to choose to ignore large portions of what I wrote, "for space' sake", including material in which I expand upon my arguments and address issues Dave would be addressing in his replies to me, then how can he claim to be consistent with his own professed standards? How can he claim to have "cited 100% of Jason's words"?

In my discussion with Dave on the doctrine of justification last year (see the comments section of the thread here), Dave didn't just ignore some of my material as he concluded his end of the discussion. He also ignored some of my material prior to that point, as the reader can see by comparing my posts to his.

For reasons I and others have explained to him, Dave's standards of judging what people should respond to and how they should respond to it are unreasonable. Considering how he's so often inconsistent with those standards, should we conclude that Dave agrees with us?


  1. I don't think Dave is capable of seeing how petty and vindictive he looks right now. He literally reminds me of a four-year-old throwing a tantrum because someone took his toy and he wants it back. Words cannot express how pathetic it is to be reduced to blubbering about word counts and percentages instead of dealing with substantive issues.

  2. Jason,just think what the response would have been had you only responded to 68.3%. Phew!


  3. Just curious, if Mr. Armstrong is so inconsistent - then how do you know he's violated his own standards?

    CathApol Blog

  4. It is frightening now, but CathApol, you might have been reading my mind because I am going to ask if:::>

    "How Dave Armstrong Has Violated His Own Inconsistent Standards", a double negative that undermines itself and makes Dave out to be consistently inconsistent with his standards inconsistently?

  5. CathApol wrote:

    "Just curious, if Mr. Armstrong is so inconsistent - then how do you know he's violated his own standards?"

    I know by the means I described above. Why don't you interact with what I said?