Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 9/10

February 3, 2012

In Part Eight, Associate Professor of Philosophy Kevin deLaplante explains in his YouTube video how a good argumentative essay should be written with a logical structure.

An intellectually honest debate/argument follows a similar process avoiding logical fallacies such as Ad Hominem, Red Herrings, Straw Figures, Cognitive Biases, Cultural Bias, Confirmation Bias, Weasel Words, Begging the Question, Appeal to Authority, and Appeal to Ridicule, etc.

Then there is the Fallacy of Many Questions (complex question, fallacy of presupposition, loaded question, plurium interrogationum) – someone asks a question that presupposes something that has not been proven or accepted by all the people involved.

The loaded question fallacy is often used rhetorically, so that the question limits direct replies to those that serve the questioner’s agenda.

In the twenty-three comments that followed the first question of the debate, which was comparing the cultural practice of piety in Taiwan with China, Sid diverted the topic using Red Herrings and Loaded Questions a number of times. This would be a tactic that Sid would use again.

Instead of spending hours showing you, I invite you to enter the debate with the first question.  If you have read this far in the Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty series and have watched Professor deLaplanet’s videos, you should have few problems recognizing Sid’s use of logical fallacies to divert attention away from topics he could not present an argument against.

Professor deLaplante says, “What if you don’t know HOW to respond to the best objections? Answer: Maybe you should reconsider your position, or at least suspend judgment on it.”

When faced with this choice, Sid often resorted to the  use of logical fallacies (especially red herrings, ad hominem and loaded questions).

In fact, Sid didn’t follow his own advice. In an Amazon reader review, he wrote of “Red Capitalism” he says, “There are too many interrogatives; sometimes they come in bunches, and it’s not always easy, or at least for a layperson like me, to know if they’re rhetorical or not… ‘Never form an argument from questions,’ and ‘Avoid asking the reader questions,’ are fundamentals a professor would tell a first-year student.”

An example of Sid ignoring his own advice may be found in a comment he left for The Ignorance Factor of Bias. In addition, in Part 5 of this series, there was a short video that touched on the topic of loaded questions.

Continued on February 4, 2012 in Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 10 or return to Part 8

 

Meet the real Sid and learn about him from his own words and the opinions of others

 

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 8/10

February 2, 2012

That “Dirty Secret” that Associate Professor of Philosophy Kevin deLaplante talked about in the Part 6 video was one of the five Essential Components of Critical Thinking, which are:

1. Logic

2. Argumentation

3. Rhetoric

4. Background Knowledge

5. Attitudes and Values

Professor deLaplante says, “While logic and argumentation are essential components of critical thinking, they are not sufficient—not by a long shot. What’s missing is the importance of background knowledge.

“Background knowledge informs critical thinking at multiple levels… but you cannot learn this in a critical thinking class or from a textbook. One of the most important elements of critical thinking cannot be taught—at least not in the way you can teach formal logic and fallacies.

“Background knowledge comes from living in the world and paying attention to what is going on.

“Mastering this component of critical thinking requires a dedication to life-long learning, a genuine openness to different points of view and a certain humility in the face of all that we don’t know.  This isn’t a set of skills you can master with worksheets and work examples. This is a philosophy, a lifestyle choice. Textbooks don’t talk about this or at last as much as they should.”


How to Write a Good Argumentative Essay: Logical StructureSource: The Critical Thinking Academy

“The ability to evaluate the premise of an argument cannot be taught in a critical thinking class,” Professor deLaplante says. “The reason is obvious. This is a question of background knowledge. Lack of background knowledge causes one to believe in a hoax. All the logic in the world won’t make up for ignorance.… The easy way is to set out looking for weaknesses in an argument. The danger here is the desire to refute another position than to understand it. This is the wrong motive, which is a desire to win an argument.”

In fact, Sid was only interested in winning the argument or making it appear that he had won, and he took advantage of my ignorance of logical fallacies in his attempt to achieve this goal.

Sid did not consider that lifelong learning was more important than my ignorance of logical fallacies.  Lifelong learning never ends unless you shut your mind to it. Even now, I may not know as much about logical fallacies as Sid, since he appears so skilled at using them, but I know more now than when I started the debate.”

Continued on February 3, 2012 in Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 9 or return to Part 7

 

Meet the real Sid and learn about him from his own words and the opinions of others

 

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 7/10

February 1, 2012

In Part One of this series, I said, “Before this series concludes, you will discover that Sid knew about logical fallacies and may have taken advantage of my ignorance.”

In part four of the debate, Sid said, “In addition to directing the reader toward a particular conclusion, begging-the-question language assumes a premise has already been established.”

According to The Writing Center at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, “Begging the Question is a complicated fallacy; it comes in several forms and can be harder to detect than many of the other fallacies we’ve discussed…”

However, “Sometimes people use the phrase ‘beg the question’ as a sort of general criticism of arguments, to mean that an arguer hasn’t given very good reasons for a conclusion…”

If Sid was aware of the complicated logical fallacy known as ‘begging the question’, we may conclude that he knew what he was doing throughout the entire debate, which may explain why he didn’t answer my question of how many books he had read on logical fallacies and why he avoided answering questions other’s asked.

Then there is this pull quote from a comment of Sid’s I deleted on January 11, 2012 at 12:22. “There is no red herring argument here. A red herring occurs when you divert from the main issue to a side issue. But if a side issue has been introduced (i.e. the boiling of water), you introduced it.”


Critical Thinking’s Dirty Secret – Source: The Critical Thinking Academy

However, Sid was wrong. I was not the one that introduced the Red Herring that changed the topic. Sid did that when he said how contaminated China’s rivers were, which had nothing to do with the topic of that post. The topic of the post was which country was doing a better job supplying water to its people—India, a democracy, or China with its one party republic. The only mistake I made was to swallow the bait of Sid’s Red Herring. After all, the goal of a Red Herring is to divert attention away from a topic that is difficult or impossible to prove wrong.

The Writing Center at UNC says of a Red Herring that “Partway through an argument, the arguer goes off on a tangent, raising a side issue that distracts the audience from what’s really at stake. Often, the arguer never returns to the original issue.”

At 14:17, Sid said, “You can quote or copy-and-paste all the fallacy definitions you wish, but you’ll never be able to employ them in argument or rebuttal. You lack the wherewithal.

However, why would I want to employ logical fallacies in an argument or rebuttal when such tricks are intellectually dishonest?  It would appear that Sid meant I could not match his skills using logical fallacies to decieve people. At least, that seems to be what he implies.

At 19:21, Sid said, “I don’t give a shit what those dictionaries say. It’s not called weasal words. It’s called begging the question language, or begging the question reasoning… You might want to learn what those newfound logical fallacies mean before you copy and paste Lloyd.

In the four previous examples, Sid revealed that he knew exactly what he was doing, and Professor deLaplante, in Part One‘s video, was right when he said, “A fallacy is a bad argument. What makes it bad is certain GENERAL FEATURES that characterize arguments of this TYPE, and arguments of this type can often be MISTAKEN for GOOD argument,” which is what Sid was counting on.

Continued on February 2, 2012 in Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 8 or return to Part 6

 

Meet the real Sid and learn about him from his own words and the opinions of others

 

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 5/10

January 30, 2012

In Part Four’s video, Associate Professor of Philosophy Kevin deLaplante talked about the Red Herring fallacy. He says it is easily confused with the Straw Figure fallacy.

The Red Herring is anything that distracts you from following the trail (topic) of the original argument and is distracting enough to make the audience want to follow the new trail (topic), which is an irrelevant distraction away from the original argument and main issue.

For example, when Sid, in our debate, introduced something that changed the subject, which raised a new issue that wasn’t relevant to the previous line of discussion, the fallacy occurred when Sid concluded something from this different issue or presumed that some conclusion has been established.


The “Straw Figure” Fallacy. Source: The Critical Thinking Academy

“In this respect,” Professor deLaplante says, “the fallacy is very much like a Straw Figure fallacy in that you are mistakenly or misleadingly say you won the argument or refuted the argument”, which was when Sid avoided engaging with the original argument.

However, the Red Herring is different from the Straw Figure fallacy in that a Straw Figure involves distorting or misrepresenting some original argument and then knocking down the distorted argument.

Straw Figure: Arguer misrepresents an opponent’s position.

Red Herring: Arguer tries to distract the attention of the audience by raising an irrelevant issue.

There are many examples of Sid introducing Red Herrings into the argument where he ignored the original argument and changed the subject. In Part 2 of the debate, I asked, “How would you describe the differences you observed between how piety is practiced in mainland China and Taiwan?”

Sid immediately introduced a Red Herring with “First, as the term pertains to Taiwan, there is no such thing as mainland China. There is China, and there is Taiwan. The word ‘mainland’ denotes a connection, but there isn’t one and never really has been.”

Sid’s response had nothing to do with piety, and if I had not been ignorant of logical fallacies, I would have been aware of what he was doing and challenged it.

Then Sid asked his first of many loaded questions when he said, “Approximately 90 percent of Taiwanese want nothing to do with China, and why would they?”

What does this have to do with piety? In fact, there was no evidence with a link to support the claim that 90 percent of Taiwanese want nothing to do with China, which was often the case with Sid’s Red Herrings throughout the debate. Unfortunately, my response was to spend hours researching and writing replies.

The recent results in Taiwan’s presidential election indicate that a majority of Taiwanese may favor reunification with China or at least closer ties. On January 14, 2012, Fox News.com reported, Taiwan’s China-friendly president wins re-election with 51.6 percent of the total against 45.6 percent for Tsai Ingwen of the main opposition Democratic Progressive Party.

Fox News said, “Ma’s Nationalist Party also retained control of the 113-seat legislature, though with a reduced majority. Speaking before thousands of jubilant supporters in downtown Taipei, Ma said his China policies had resonated with voters. ‘They gave us support for our policy to put aside differences with the mainland. To search for peace and turn it into business opportunities.'”

In addition, Sid introduced so many Red Herrings, that I couldn’t respond to all of them, which is why I decided to write comments and new posts and spend more time with these new topics.  When I did respond to some of Sid’s Red Herrings, he often ignored what I wrote while posting more Red Herrings that I often scrambled to respond to, which was my mistake.

Sid’s alleged contempt for me appeared to increase as evidenced by his numerous ad hominem attacks after I started to ban his logical fallacies. In addition, his use of Judgmental language – insulting or pejorative language, may have been intended to influence my judgment. Examples: “You’re an imbecile Lloyd, a soft headed moron,” andYou lack the intelligence to argue, so you ban.”

Continued on January 31, 2012 in Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 6 or return to Part 4

 

Meet the real Sid and learn about him from his own words and the opinions of others

 

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 4/10

January 29, 2012

In Part Three’s video, Associate Professor of Philosophy Kevin deLaplante talked about the abusive Ad Hominem fallacy. This is the fallacy of rejecting a claim or an argument given by someone because we don’t like something about the person, and we mistake criticism of a person for criticism of his or her claim or argument.

Professor deLapante’s most blatant example was, “Your argument is bad because YOU SUCKI!” — The problem isn’t with criticism or praise, it is with confusing the judging of a person with the judging of an argument.

Several examples of Ad Hominem attacks that Sid used on this Blog are listed here. However, you may discover that Sid did not use the Ad Hominem fallacy during the debate, which ended on December 8, 2011. The reason may be because he was getting away with his intellectual dishonesty since no one was stopping him. Sid’s use of the Ad Hominem fallacy comes afterwards.

On January 2, 2012, Sid said, “You’re a mythomaniac, a propagandist, and endorser of one of the most repressive regimes in the world. And your website is a series of disconnected nonsense decorated by retarded videos. You can’t construct an argument to save your life, and the sycophants who show up here saying, ‘Yes, Lloyd, I agree with you,’ belong in Sgt. McGillicuty’s Travelling Nutbar Show.

“Your ideas are an advertisement for how whacky you are, and you’re so whacky, you don’t even realize it. Ever wonder why no one except other crazies post comments here? I’ll tell you: those thousands of viewers read your posts and think, ‘Good god!’

Note – I should have started deleting Sid’s comments when his use of Ad Hominem occurred.
However, I started deleting them on January 11, 2012


The “Red Herring” Fallacy. Source: The Critical Thinking Academy

Here are a few examples of Sid’s ad hominem fallacies from the Deleted Comment File —

On January 11 at 14:17, Sid said, There is no such thing as weasal [Note: proper spelling is weasel] words. Again, that’s teenagese [Note: no such word]. You could never use the term weasal words in academic discourse, just like you could never use dude, LMAO, bittersweet, etc. There are proper – adult – terms for such things. That you used the phrase weasal words underscores a dearth of knowledge, juvenility, or both.

“You can quote or copy-and-paste all the fallacy definitions you wish, but you’ll never be able to employ them in argument or rebuttal. You lack the wherewithal.”

On January 11 at 19:21, Sid said, You lack the intelligence to argue, so you ban. What do all those books you’ve discovered say about that?” [Note: This was after he claimed there were no books on the topic, and I proved him wrong.]

On January 12 at 09:21, Sid said, You delete the posts because you’re a propagandist and by extension a censor. You don’t have the intellectual wherewithall to debate, so you ban.”

On January 12 at 09:24, Sid said, “Banning my comments only makes you look like a bad sport. You can’t argue – you don’t know how – so you delete.”

On January 12 at 17:22, Sid said, You just don’t know how to debate, so you cheat by deleting your opponents’ remarks.”

On January 14 at 20:19, Sid said, “You’re an imbecile Lloyd, a soft headed moron.”

In the Ad Hominem video in Part 3, Professor deLaplante says an argument is a collection of claims linked by relations of logical entailment or support. The plausibility or implausibility of those claims and their validity or invalidity of the argument given isn’t determined by facts about the moral character of the person asserting the argument… Facts about someone’s moral character by themselves don’t make it anymore less likely that their arguments are good or bad.

Ad hominem arguments rely on the following types of premises:

(Almost) any claim that P makes about X is (probably) false, because of some feature of P.
Meaning, (Almost) any claim Lloyd makes about China or the Chinese is (probably) false, because of some feature of Lloyd’s moral character as defined by Sid.

or

(Almost) any argument that P gives about X is (probably bad, because of some feature of P.
Meaning, (Almost) any argument that Lloyd gives about China and the Chinese is (probably) bad, because of some feature of Lloyd’s moral character as defined by Sid.

Continued on January 30, 2012 in Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 5 or return to Part 3

 

Meet the real Sid and learn about him from his own words and the opinions of others

 

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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Sign up for an E-mail Subscription at the top of this page.

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Studying Troy Parfitt using his own words and the opinion of others

January 28, 2010

One way to learn about the depths of an individual’s character is to listen to what others have to say about him. Then we discover more by paying attention to the individual himself. (Note: This post was updated on February 29, 2012)

In PART ONE of this post, I have published all of Mr. Parfitt’s deleted comments in his own words.

You may find pull quotes from more than a dozen reviews of his second book in PART TWO that may reveal more about the individual we discovered in PART ONE.

PART THREE offers excerpts from an E-mail Mr. Parfitt sent me about half way through the debate.  This is the E-mail Mr. Parfitt did not want anyone else to see. During the debate when I leaked some of his E-mail, he asked me to stop, but I refused to agree to his request.

PART FOUR comes from Mr. Parfitt’s Amazon reader reviews, which may reinforce the character of the individual that is emerging.

My own opinion should be well known by now, so I will stay out of this character study and allow readers to come to their own conclusions of Troy Parfitt the person from his own words and the opinions of others. If you wish to read my opinion, you may do so at Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 10

_____________________________________

PART ONE: the deleted comments of Mr. Troy Parfitt:

— January 11 at 14:17 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 1/7

There is no such thing as weasal words. Again, that’s teenagese. You could never use the term weasal words in academic discourse, just like you could never use dude, LMAO, bittersweet, etc. There are proper – adult – terms for such things. That you used the phrase weasal words underscores a dearth of knowledge, juvenility, or both.

You can quote or copy-and-paste all the fallacy definitions you wish, but you’ll never be able to employ them in argument or rebuttal. You lack the wherewithal.

Ai li shan duo. Zhi dao ma? Ni shi Gong Chan Dang de gou tui er yi. Bai mu ni.

How’s my Chinese?

—January 22 at 19:21 for Water — the Democracy versus the Authoritarian Republic

That’s not a long enough post Lloyd. We expect longer.

You can bar me from commenting. All hopeless CCP apologists are censors. It’s inevitable that you would try something like that. You lack the intelligence to argue, so you ban. What do all those books you’ve discovered say about that?

I don’t give a shit what those dictionaries say. It’s not called weasal words. It’s called begging the question language, or begging the question reasoning.

Ex. Mr. Parfitt and his ignorant ideas….

But are Mr. Parfitt’s ideas ignorant? This must be proven. The word ignorant represents begging the question language. It is not a weasal word, at least if you’re older than 14. The person who engages in this fallacy may not be acting like a weasal; they just using language that begs the question.

You might want to learn what those newfound logical fallacies mean before you copy and paste Lloyd.

 

—January 11 at 19:23 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 1/7

Gong chan dang de gou tui hao.

January 11 at 19:27 for The IGNORANCE Factor of Bias – Part 5/5

Okay, Lloyd,

So why is Sun called the father of Chinese democracy? Why did the government on Taiwan finally succumb to the demands of the Chinese people for democracy – by allowing democracy? Why was one of Sun’s three principle’s democracy?

And why do you lie so much?

—January 12 at 09:21 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 1/7

You delete the posts because you’re a propagandist and by extension a censor. You don’t have the intellectual wherewithall to debate, so you ban.

The last post was not a string of questions.

— January 12 at 09:24 for Water — the Democracy versus the Authoritarian Republic

Banning my comments only makes you look like a bad sport. You can’t argue – you don’t know how – so you delete.

— January 12 at 12:22 for Water — the Democracy versus the Authoritarian Republic

You argued China was doing a good job with water.

I argued that it wasn’t by providing a couple of links.

You said ‘which is why Chinese people boil their water.’

I said, ‘That’s not true,’ and explained why Chinese people drink boiled water.

You then said your family members didn’t drink boiled water, adding that I’d insulted your family.

There is no red herring argument here. A red herring occurs when you divert from the main issue to a side issue. But if a side issue has been introduced (i.e. the boiling of water), you introduced it.

— January 12, at 17:22 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 1/7

You can repeatedly delete my comments, but I will continue to post them. You’ve deleted more than four, and it’s not because they consist of questions. You just don’t know how to debate, so you cheat by deleting your opponents’ remarks.

There was no string of questions remark. Now, you’re lying to your readers.

— January 12 at 17:54 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 2/7

Be careful with that logic information you’ve found Lloyd. You don’t know how to use it yet.

— January 12 at 19:44 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 1/7

You can repeatedly delete my comments, but I will continue to post them. You’ve deleted more than four, and it’s not because they consist of questions. You just don’t know how to debate, so you cheat by deleting your opponents’ remarks.

There was no string of questions remark. Now, you’re lying to your readers.

—January 12 at 19:44 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 2/7

You can repeatedly delete my comments, but I will continue to post them. You’ve deleted more than four, and it’s not because they consist of questions. You just don’t know how to debate, so you cheat by deleting your opponents’ remarks.

There was no string of questions remark. Now, you’re lying to your readers.

— January 13 at 16:28 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 2/7

That video’s deep Lloyd. Move over Socrates.

— January 13 at 21:24 for The IGNORANCE Factor of Bias – Part 5/5

Your commentary about twisted transpositions in English language is most natural, and most enlightening.

— January 14, at 12:08 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 2/7
Lloyd said to his readers:

“Mr. Parfitt’s comment that you responded to may have been deleted. I’ve deleted four so far. The last one I deleted was a string of questions. I will not accept any more questions from Mr. Parfitt or anything that comes with the logical fallacies he uses so often.”

And then,

“Since I notified Mr. Parfitt that I would be deleting his comments that used logical fallacies [Intellectually-dishonest debate tactics] to further his opinions and make it appear as if he is the winner in the argument, I have deleted ten but I have saved them in another file and will be using them as evidence in the post/s about Logical Fallacies I’m working on.”

And finally,

“I didn’t really delete them. I saved them.”

— January 14 at 12:09 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 4/7

Lloyd said to his readers:

“Mr. Parfitt’s comment that you responded to may have been deleted. I’ve deleted four so far. The last one I deleted was a string of questions. I will not accept any more questions from Mr. Parfitt or anything that comes with the logical fallacies he uses so often.”

And then,

“Since I notified Mr. Parfitt that I would be deleting his comments that used logical fallacies [Intellectually-dishonest debate tactics] to further his opinions and make it appear as if he is the winner in the argument, I have deleted ten but I have saved them in another file and will be using them as evidence in the post/s about Logical Fallacies I’m working on.”

And finally,

“I didn’t really delete them. I saved them.”

— January 14 at 12:10 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 3/7

Lloyd said to his readers:

“Mr. Parfitt’s comment that you responded to may have been deleted. I’ve deleted four so far. The last one I deleted was a string of questions. I will not accept any more questions from Mr. Parfitt or anything that comes with the logical fallacies he uses so often.”

And then,

“Since I notified Mr. Parfitt that I would be deleting his comments that used logical fallacies [Intellectually-dishonest debate tactics] to further his opinions and make it appear as if he is the winner in the argument, I have deleted ten but I have saved them in another file and will be using them as evidence in the post/s about Logical Fallacies I’m working on.”

And finally,

“I didn’t really delete them. I saved them.”

— January 14 at 12:11 for Water — the Democracy versus the Authoritarian Republic

Lloyd said to his readers:

“Mr. Parfitt’s comment that you responded to may have been deleted. I’ve deleted four so far. The last one I deleted was a string of questions. I will not accept any more questions from Mr. Parfitt or anything that comes with the logical fallacies he uses so often.”

And then,

“Since I notified Mr. Parfitt that I would be deleting his comments that used logical fallacies [Intellectually-dishonest debate tactics] to further his opinions and make it appear as if he is the winner in the argument, I have deleted ten but I have saved them in another file and will be using them as evidence in the post/s about Logical Fallacies I’m working on.”

And finally,

“I didn’t really delete them. I saved them.”

— January 14 at 20:19 for The Economic Health of BRICS – Part 2/7

You’re an imbecile Lloyd, a soft headed moron.

— January 23 at 09:04 for Is China a Republic? – Part 2/4

More propaganda.

It doesn’t make sense to say “As for checks and balances, the parliamentary system offers few effective checks and balances.” Actually, in a sense, parliamentary systems offer no checks and balances – that’s an American term and has nothing to do with a parliamentary system. In a parliamentary system, it’s called separation of powers. Those parliamentary systems you list do have separation of powers. Does that need explaining? Or should we crack open the textbook for Poly Sci. 101?

And who criticises parliamentary systems because leaders aren’t elected directly? I never hear anyone in Canada complaining about this. The voter choose the party, understanding who the party leader is. If the leader should die, etc., the party elects an interim leader and then another official leader. What’s the problem? It’s not the American way?

So, we’ve got, on the one hand, Yankee ignorance and sociocentrism, and on the other: another tacit endorsement of a brutal authoritarian regime.

Q. Who in their right mind would call a communist country a republic?
A. No one.

If China’s a republic, get to it. Explain how it’s a republic. You don’t make arguments through questions, you make them through statements. I’ll get you started. “China is a republic because….”

— January 23 at 19:56 for Is China a Republic? – Part 2/4

That’s rich Lloyd. You likely didn’t know what a logical fallacy was until our “debate.” Now, armed with a few labels you located on the interwebs, ones you don’t understand, you censor claiming my arguments are illogical.

What do these argumentative logic pages you’ve glanced at dimly say about engaging in rebuttal by deleting or censoring one’s propositions?

By deleting my statements, you reveal yourself for what you are: a mythomaniac and a censor. Certainly you see the grand irony. Or does that need explaining, too? Perchance in baby English along with, say, an explanation as to why checks and and balances do not pertain to non-American models of government.

— January 23 at 19:57 for Is China a Republic? – Part 2/4

Here’s the original post. People can see whether it’s “illogical” or not.

More propaganda.
It doesn’t make sense to say “As for checks and balances, the parliamentary system offers few effective checks and balances.” Actually, in a sense, parliamentary systems offer no checks and balances – that’s an American term and has nothing to do with a parliamentary system. In a parliamentary system, it’s called separation of powers. Those parliamentary systems you list do have separation of powers. Does that need explaining? Or should we crack open the textbook for Poly Sci. 101?
And who criticises parliamentary systems because leaders aren’t elected directly? I never hear anyone in Canada complaining about this. The voter choose the party, understanding who the party leader is. If the leader should die, etc., the party elects an interim leader and then another official leader. What’s the problem? It’s not the American way?
So, we’ve got, on the one hand, Yankee ignorance and sociocentrism, and on the other: another tacit endorsement of a brutal authoritarian regime.
Q. Who in their right mind would call a communist country a republic?
A. No one.
If China’s a republic, get to it. Explain how it’s a republic. You don’t make arguments through questions, you make them through statements. I’ll get you started. “China is a republic because….”

— January 26 at 20:06 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 1/10

An alleged con artist? Who’s alleging I’m a con-artist?

I think the cheese has finally, and completely, slid off your cracker.

You echo some website’s sentiment that tact is just as important as logic. Is it tactful to call someone with opposing points of view a con-artist? Absolutely not. Is there evidence that I – Troy Parfitt, my isn’t Sid, mate – am attempting to con someone. What’s the con? Who’s the victim of the con? Where’s the proof?

And we ought to use reason with caution? What does that mean? Reason is all we have. A dim statement should invalidate that website you quote, and why not quote a book?

If you didn’t know about rhetoric or arguentative logic before you entered a so-called debate, it’s just not on to say your opponent took advantage of you. If you’re going to debate, or set down arguements, which is what a blog is, an understanding of how to formulate an effective argument – and how to refute a poor one – is imperative. It baffles me how someone could be your age and have been an educator for so many years (not to mention a journalist) and not be familiar with the basics of logic.

And, of course, like much of what you say, you’re accusation that I took advantage of you smacks of irony because it represents – wait for it – bad logic. It is an abusive ad hominem. Because you lack the knowledge and common sense to refute my arguments, you claim I’m a con-artist who took advantage of you.

And of course, when your circuits get overloaded, which doesn’t take much, you delete and censor. You censor, you recriminate, and then you invent: China’s a republic, China’s constitution is real hum-dinger of a document, Mao – he was just misunderstood. Not a bad guy really. All those academic have it wrong, don’t they Lloyd. There’s nothing their books say that you can’t refute with dubious websites and ironic statements about logic.

You’re a crank and so are your readers. And yes, I’m aware of the irony in saying that.

— January 27 at 13:28 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 2/10

Looking at a bit of elementary logic on the internet won’t help, nor will it prevent you from lying. Above all, it cannot belie your not playing with a full deck.

It is unreasonable, and indeed strange, to claim that comments will be deleted because they, for example, fail to meet the rebuttal criterion or engage in equivocation.

The reader would assume, Lloyd, that you would illustrate why the comments were invalid hence illustrating your intellectual superiority, but no, you first warn that comments will be deleted if they contain questions or fallacies (you forgot to mention the questions bit in the above explanation), then you delete information that doesn’t contain faulty logic – it just annoys you, next you admit to not knowing much about logic, and finally you claim again that statements were deleted because they didn’t stand up to your logic standards; standards that, by your own admission, you don’t have.

You are left looking, quite frankly, loopy. You take figurative rope and hang yourself repeatedly. You make things up, try to justify things you’ve made up, and then you go on embellishing. The irony is rich, because as I’ve pointed out (not an argument, just a statement), you’re a champion, not of China or the Chinese people, but of the Chinese Communist Party. Its beliefs are your beliefs.

It does the same kind of thing. It was in the news today that the CCP has been lying about pollution and not disclosing related statistics for five years. What kind of country lies to its own people about weather and air quality?

You’re an aplogist to the regime and all its oppression. You’re a vulgar propagandist and a crackpot.

BTW, it’s not a logical fallacy to call somebody a name. Look it up.

— January 27 at 14:16 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 2/10

Besides, Floyd, you censor my remarks BEFORE you even see them, don’t you?

You’re a liar and crazier than a bag of hammers.

— January 28 at 08:05 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 3/10

Your talking about logic is a bit like a child disseminating wisdom on nuclear physics or quantum mechanics. You are so incredibly stupid it defies imagination. On the one hand you admit you have no background in formal logic, on the other you you pontificate on it. You are foolish, a grown man with the intelligence of a teenager.

—January 28 at 21:46 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 3/10

“The word “ravage” was exactly what I wanted.”

Yes, and I’m the King of Spain.

“I don’t recall anyone appointing you as the Gestapo agent that polices how words are used and what they mean in a sentence.”

No, that’s called a dictionary.

… ravaged 1.3 billion Chinese people – ha ha ha.

Again, when not being a absolute amadan, to employ the Gaelic, high comedic value, and just the sort of dreck with which the internet brims.

When the US turns the Moon into a state, Lloyd, are you going to move there? Maybe words won’t have any meaning in space, or you can be elected chief censor or overseer of (internet) logic – you know – monitor the astronaut population for improper uses of a cliche, etc. You could wear a Mao suit while doing it. You should sign up. I think you’d feel right at home.

— January 28 at 21:46 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 3/10

“The word “ravage” was exactly what I wanted.”

Yes, and I’m the King of Spain.

“I don’t recall anyone appointing you as the Gestapo agent that polices how words are used and what they mean in a sentence.”

No, that’s called a dictionary.

… ravaged 1.3 billion Chinese people – ha ha ha.

Again, when not being a absolute amadan, to employ the Gaelic, high comedic value, and just the sort of dreck with which the internet brims.

When the US turns the Moon into a state, Lloyd, are you going to move there? Maybe words won’t have any meaning in space, or you can be elected chief censor or overseer of (internet) logic – you know – monitor the astronaut population for improper uses of a cliche, etc. You could wear a Mao suit while doing it. You should sign up. I think you’d feel right at home.

— January 29 at 09:58 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 4/10

But Ad hominem attacks are not the only thing you delete. Whenever you lose an exchange, like your defence of using the word ravage incorrectly – nay, absurdly – you delete that, too.

You’ll probably delete this as well, or snip bits to present it in a selective manner. That’s real cherry picking.

You’re a censor, highly ironic given your unfailing endorsement of China’s government. Like all censors, they think they’re positioning themselves ahead by staying in control, but in reality they are just making themselves look foolish.

— January 29 at 20:10 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 4/10

“Claiming victory is also a logical fallacy.”

That statement underscores just how little you know about logic.
Your two week internet crash course isn’t enough. And what do your lessons say about censoring and deleting an opponent’s arguments?

And you don’t endorse the CCP? Is that right? You don’t expect anyone who reads this daily drivel to believe that, do you?

‘The CCP works for the people…. They lift the populace out of poverty…. Mao? Did lots of good things. What? Endorse the CCP? Never! BTW, have you seen their constitution? Smashing!’

Go ahead. Edit, censor, delete, cut, do your worst. It only illustrates how pathetic you are. You cannot take me on in a proper debate, so you fiddle and manipulate, cutting out key arguments and points and (mis)labeling them as logical fallacies without explaining why or analysing them like a novice.

But not knowing much about your subject shouldn’t stop you from writing heaps on it. You can cite Jimmy Nobody, Motivational Speaker, author of You’re Great, I’m Great, post some dubious video clips, and other rubbish you find online, and presto – to your way of thinking, you’ve presented a proper case. It’s the same flimsy approach you apply to China, so why limit it to one subject, eh?

Go ahead Mr. Censor, censor.

— January 30 at 07:21 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 5/10

It’s not a red herring to point out your question is flawed and illustrates a lack of knowledge on the subject. You kick of the debate with the word mainland, but vis a vis Taiwan, there is no mainland. That’s China studies 101. I did answer the question re piety, saying it was more or less the same everywhere in the Chinese world, and if the 90 percent quote is not accurate,

1. What do your little internet crash courses tell you re the name of using statistics that cannot be substantiated? What’s that fallacy called, Aristotle? I’ll start you off: the fallacy of fake…. But such a claim can be substantiated. If it can’t, why not offer an alternative stat and a source? Or, alternatively, you could just ban this entire comment to give you a much needed advantage.  It’s so much easier to argue when the audience cannot see your opponent’s points of view, eh Lloyd?

— January 30 at 19:32 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 4/10

You’re merely censoring my remarks. Your audience can see that.

— February 2 at 19:28 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 7/10

I took advantage of your ignorance? So you admit you’re ignorant!

Ha ha. Just joking Floyd. That’s equivocation, in’it?

Sid Vicious

— February 2 at 19:32 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 6/10

“This site has much information, but the author, like the Jesuits of old appears to have conjured up a China that he wishes us to believe in.”

Bingo.

—February 2 at 20:11 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 6/10

So you’re censoring everybody who has an opinion are you Floyd? You’re sorry, pathetic little censor, you know that? You’re a fucking worm.

[Note from Blog host:  I suggest readers click on the link and go see what Mr. Parfitt is talking about.  I left a note explaining what I was doing and when the series of posts mentioned appears, the censorship accusation will be proved wrong once again.]

—February 3 at 16:46 for http://ilookchina.net/2012/02/02/10580/

I think if you spend another year or two studying logic, Lloyd, you might be, oh, 20 percent on your way to realizing what you should have said during our debate. Maybe in another four or five years, you’ll win the debate.

So, if people use logical falacies in their remarks, they will be deleted? Did you ever stop to think that people make logical fallacies all the time? Or that a comments section is for feedback and opinion, not proper rhetoric?

You’re saying people must construct logically sound comments seems a.) unncessary b.) unusual.

People will think you’re an ersatz pedant, a censor, or both.

—February 4 at 07:34 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 10/10

Studying intellectual dishonesty

ha ha ha ha ha ha haaaaaaaaaaaaaaah hahaqhhahahhahaha

ha ha ha ha h

oh, god, that’s a good one…

ha ha ha ha ha ha haha

Lloyd, the cheese has slid your mate.

— February 4 at 07:36 for Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 10/10

sorry, make that slid off your cracker, mate. I was laughing so hard I couldn’t type…

You just made my morning. Thank you.

(Maybe you could supply a youtube video from some quack claiming I have laugh out loud at idiot syndrome)

Hey everyone, watch Lloyd “learn” on the internet

hah hah haaaa hh HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

—February 5 at 15:48 for Nap Time in China

It’s common knowledge that Chinese people – and people throughout East Asia – take midday naps. How is it that you didn’t know that? Oh, right you’ve never lived in Asia. Apparently, if one your family members doesn’t supply you with information or if you don’t find it on some questionable website, then you don’t have that information. What’s the next blog on? Chopsticks? Gunpowder?

— February 28 at 21:43 for Americans doing Business in China – Part 8/16

What about north-west-north-north-south lake? Oh, right. You said the possibilities are endless.

— February 28 at 21:48 for Americans doing Business in China – Part 7/16

“It seems that Canada and Australia have some of the toughest laws in the world for this sort of crime.”

Oh yeah? And how many years do you think I’ll get for calling you and your site silly?

I’m going to get 30 to life for “stocking.”

— February 28 at 22:17 for Americans doing Business in China – Part 6/16

Most of the smaller commercial trucks are blue—I have no idea why? I asked a couple of times but really did not receive an answer. Maybe there was a sale on blue paint? I am certain there is a reason, but since I don’t know it, I can’t share it with you—rather just make reference to it.”

Penetrating, absorbing, magnetic – really.

Hey everyone. Trucks in China are blue. Stay tuned for the next blog when we find out rice is white and trees are green.

— February 29 at 08:07 for Americans doing Business in China – Part 9/16

That’s very touching.

— February 29 at 08:11 for Americans doing Business in China – Part 7/16

“the visitors to this site may read those thirty-eight comments you made, which I finally posted in one place in an attempt to get you to stop harassing me,”

Liar.

I have so many IP addresses because K-Mart was having a blue light sale on them and I thought I’d stock up

Correction from Blog host: I’ve lived more than a year in Asia and have spent more time in China than Mr. Parfitt has. In addition, my wife and I have a three bedroom flat in Shanghai.

____________________________________________

 

PART TWO — These are the pull quotes from reviews of Mr. Parfitt’s second book, “Why China Will Never Rule the World”, which offer opinions of more than a dozen people that read his book that may reinforce aspects of Mr. Parfitt’s character .that were revealed in PART ONE.  The links will take you to the reviews.

From the Vancouver Sun. “But all too often the book comes across as a 400-page rant. Although the rant is by and large well-founded, there were times when it took dedication to duty to keep on reading.”

The “South China Morning Post” reviewed Parfitt’s book on September 12, 2011, and said, “The literary magazine Foreword apparently judged Parfitt’s travelogue too ‘arrogant’ and ‘smug’ to review.” (could not find a direct link to the review. However, Troy Parfitt has posted the entire review on his Website.)

From My Take, we discover, “Far from being a Foreign Babe in Beijing, Troy Parfitt was like a Foreign Bear. Roaming around China from Harbin to Llasa, growling, grumbling and berating at mainlanders left and right… Now, the book is chock full of interesting encounters and sharp observations on places and Chinese behaviors and attitudes. But, and yes this is a big “but”, what prevents the book from being a stellar one is Parfitt’s reaction to China. Anybody who’s been to China can readily tell that it’s still a developing nation with a lot of poor people, and that the behavior of some people aren’t exactly very civilized. Parfitt notices this all right, and combined with some negative experiences, he basically vents right from the beginning of his trip, even before he actually enters mainland China as Macau is the first Chinese city to feel his rage and scorn.

“Again, while some of it has some truth, he overreaches and his critiques become broader and broader. Any negative experience sets him off, leading him to expound on the fallacies of Chinese civilization. This is supposed to be a travel book, but it’s kind of hard to really enjoy if the writer is heavily biased, especially virtually right from the start of the trip.”

Wordbasket says, “Unfortunately, he also sees them as real humans who primarily fail to uphold his Western standards. He wants
swift service, smiles all around, and cab drivers who can negotiate Hong Kong streets in English. He wants standards of professionalism that didn’t even exist in the Western world a century ago. And he looks down on Chinese who don’t snap to. Though I can’t call Parfitt racist (he denigrates everyone equally), he certainly sees the world through his own particular lenses.”

Peking Duck says, “I was appalled at Parfitt’s attitude toward both China and Taiwan. In spite of his finding some things to praise about each, it is more than clear from the very start that he harbors a good deal of contempt toward both countries.”

Zhang-Schmidt.com says, “As such an analysis “sine ira et studio” – without fear or favor – the book fails. Where Martin Jacques’ “When China Rules the World” (which I’m making my way through in follow-up) lays out arguments and describes historical developments, Troy Parfitt does bring in some historical background and references, but in highly opinionated ways which alone belie his supposed position as disinterested observer.

“Rather, he comes across like a China expat on what they somewhat affectionately call a “bad China day,” or as an angry traveler who cannot quite handle the many disappointments and oddities that China throws at the foreigner.”

Pacific Rimshots.com says, “I see more of negative attitude and communication problems than a profound understanding of the supposed problems of Chinese culture. This isn’t so much a book about China’s future standing in the world as the disgruntled traveller’s diary.”

The Opionator.com says, “This feels more like a book written by a man who’s falling out of love with a culture. He’s convincing himself of the rightness of his decision to leave and go back to his roots. Hence, he paints the picture with a broadly negative brush.”

Kathryn Pauli.com says, “The book disappointed in several ways. First is that Mr. Parfitt seemed to lack patience and was often just plain bad-tempered in his travels, quick to ascribe the worst motives to people (many of whom he, a stranger, must have caught off guard with his questions about Taiwan, democracy, and what China offers the world), and also unduly surprised when people were friendly and wanted nothing from him.

“A larger concern, however, is that the author reaches conclusions to very big questions in reliance on superficial encounters with people, not upon lasting relationships or ongoing conversations with people who have reason to be particularly thoughtful. (I shudder to imagine what one would learn about Canada or the United States simply by driving around from small town to big city and talking to random people in restaurants, at tourist sites, etc., about important issues of the day.) And when the author reaches a conclusion, he rants and exaggerate; one of many examples is: ‘Traditional Chinese culture is a shackle, and Chinese history is a dungeon from which it is impossible to escape.'”

Elliot’s Blog says, “Although he seems to hate everyone he meets, he still wants people to like him… Parfitt’s theme behind his title-statement, the theme which underlies the entire book, is that the Chinese people are too uneducated and ignorant to handle the responsibility of sustaining their nation as a world power, let alone as the world power. He focuses the majority of his research … on interminglings with the rank-and-file Chinese one might meet on a bus, at a cafe, or on very touristy tours… He also quite obviously hates that average, rank-and-file Chinese person, a quality heavily uncouth in a travel-writer. He despises their stares, considering it to be their own form of hatred to the “outsiders… the baggage he took along on his little research trip (baggage like the preconception that the mainland Chinese are a bunch of ignorant thieves too illiterate to ever lead, for example) prevented him from writing a solid piece of travel literature that could actually serve as a useful tool for an outsider seeking to learn more about China. Sadly, this just was not his goal.”

The China Law Blog says, “As I was reading this book, I found myself doing something I pretty much never do; I kept wondering about the motivations of the author and what what in his own life had caused him to see things the way he did. I kept wondering what it was that had caused the Parfitt to see China so unremittingly negatively and what motivated his need to besmirch it so. How much of Parfitt’s views are based on his mind-set going in and how much are based on an objective analysis? I go places expecting and wanting to like them and so I usually do. Parfitt seemed to go to China to prove how horrible it is and his own preconceptions gave him exactly what he sought.”

In a review by Richard R. Blake, he says, “It should come as no surprise to the reader that Troy’s own bias, personal philosophy and sometimes cynical outlook come through loud and clear in his writing.”

Taiwan East Coaster says, “At its worst, Parfitt has written a nit-picky tract that seems to hold no real purpose beyond vilifying two nations of people. I felt like he could have written a similar book about Canadians or Finnish people or the Masai tribe. It’s easy (if not cathartic) to be critical. If he had stuck to his larger, more sweeping conclusions and left his day-to-day irritants out it would have struck a grander chord. The ninth time he complains about being solicited for a massage in the middle of the night I just wanted to grab him and tell him to unplug his damned phone and quit complaining about non-issues.”

The Lost Laowai says, “You can’t exactly call it purple prose because that would be doing a disservice to 19th century writers of gothic novels. This is purpler than purple. One adjective will never suffice where 27 will do. I’m a wordy person who tends to repeat herself but this goes beyond even the worst excesses of my own somewhat excessive tendency to not realize I should have shut up with the irrelevant details and gotten on with the story 20 minutes ago… No matter where I randomly open the book to I don’t just find China bashing with an educated veneer, I also find the most godawful overuse of adjectives, similes, and purple prose that you can find outside of something written in a high school creative writing class. Were a decent editor to remove two out of every three adjectives and replace every word that requires a person of average intelligence to use the dictionary with a more common one, this book would not only be a lot shorter, it would also be a lot more readable… Hopefully, his third book will get that editor because unless it does, I don’t see myself wasting time, money, or energy on another book of his.”


Does Troy Parfitt’s cultivated media image in this video match his own comments (from the deleted file), E-mail and the opinions of others?

___________________________________________

PART THREE—excerpts from the E-mail Mr. Parfitt did not want me to share with anyone else

— December 1, 2011 excerpts from an E-mail that Mr. Parfitt sent me about half way through the debate.

Mr. Parfitt wrote, “Yeah, Koratsky’s full of shit. Alessandro is bitter, Aussie in China strikes me as being a cultural convert, but a nice guy (like yourself), Terry just doesn’t want to know (he feels, he doesn’t think; in Chinese wo juede… not wo xiang…. I feel vs. I think; whatever his grandparents told him is good enough for him.)…

“As a teacher, I spent a lot of time familiarizing myself with how Chinese people think, which is often quite different from how Western people think. Often, though not always…

[Note from Blog host—this is interesting.  Mind reading is a great skill. I taught thousands of students for thirty years and never knew how my students thought as individuals. I find it fascinating how Mr. Parfitt reads minds and judges people. In fact, he judges an entire race of people ravaging more than 1.3 billion Chinese with his opinions.]

“if you don’t scare them, they won’t listen; that’s the Chinese way: fear commands attention…

“cheating is an art form in Chinese society; many Chinese students brag about what good cheaters they are – anything to get that higher mark…”

“They think apologizing means they’re on the shit list forever. So, when Michael in grade 10 writes ‘gan’ on the desk (fuck), and you ask him why he did that (you watched him do that), Michael just says, ‘No I didn’t. Teacher, no. No, you don’t understand.’ Some will deny it all day. Some will get their parents involved….

“It’s nutty. You’re got to train them to apologize and, in effect, start acting like an adult. This is confusing because in high school, marks are what’s important, not maturity…

“What ends up happening is that kids exhibit one type of behaviour with their foreign teachers and another kind with the Chinese ones.”

_________________________________________________

PART FOUR — The following link will take you to Troy Parfitt’s member review page on Amazon. Below the link are pull quotes from a few of his own reviews of other books, which may reinforce the character of the individual that is emerging.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/cdp/member-reviews/A1XXSZCR3FAVAK/ref=cm_cr_pr_auth_rev?ie=UTF8&sort_by=MostRecentReview

For “Video Night in Kathmandu: And Other Reports from the Not-So-Far East” by Virginia Beahan

“I bought Mr. Iyer’s The Global Soul, read half of it, and dropped it off at a second-hand bookstore thinking, `Life’s too short.’ I was also happy in a way. Iyer wasn’t that good. I found The Global Soul boring (brush fires in California) and fawning (the city of Toronto). `I can write better,’ I thought…

“My go-to travel writer is Paul Theroux: opinionated, direct, fond of calling people fatsos; a cerebral and super-knowledgeable adventurer extraordinaire; a fascinating figure and fine writer who’s written about nearly every country on Earth, but an egotistical grump sure to have the last word.”

For “When China Rules the World: The End of the Western World and the Birth of a New Global Order” by Martin Jacques

“In this book, you’ll find academic prose, a massive select bibliography, 70 pages of notes, lovely maps and graphs, omissions of key evidence, wild speculation, unforgiveable leaps in logic, stupefying factual errors (Sun Yat-sen’s philosophy was not influenced by Mencius; it was influenced by Abraham Lincoln), and a thesis that, if you will, repeatedly repeats itself repeatedly, but offers little in the way of support…

“In addition to being a Marxist, Martin Jacques is a dyed-in-the-wool Sinophile, and in the end, Sinophiles are all the same: they are knowledgeable, articulate, dedicated embellishers…

“Martin Jacque’s When China Rules the World represents a wish, an exercise in pro-China propaganda, or both. The Englishman’s argument is unsubstantiated, graph-and-chart infused, pseudo-academic tosh.”

For “The Man Who Loved China: The Fantastic Story of the Eccentric Scientist Who Unlocked the Mysteries of the Middle Kingdom” by Simon Winchester

“Certainly, it’s impossible that an entire civilization could simply erase from memory and cease producing hundreds of its own innovations. What is more likely is that Chinese inventions remained very local, or at least were never mass produced or widely disseminated. It’s also likely that sketches of inventions Needham found were just those – sketches. I used to sketch some wicked spaceships when I was a kid. They had lasers, and even eyeballs and tentacles. Not sure if anyone who found them in 2525 would attribute them to historical Maritime Canadian ingenuity, though…

“I cannot recall being so enthralled by a book while being so put off by its subject. It’s true China invented many things never properly documented or given their due in the West, but Needham has fallen into history as most Sinophiles do: as a determined embellisher. Needham may have been a scientific genius, but he was also a fool. He was used by the Communist Party in a ruse to have the world believe the Americans had used germ warfare against China (and North Korea) during the Korean War, a bogus charge China maintains.”

For “Red Capitalism: The Fragile Financial Foundation of China’s Extraordinary Rise” by Carl E. Walter and Fraser J. T. Howie

“The book also repeats itself – often. It requires summaries, but not repetition. Using a one-chapter-per-topic approach, the structure of a chapter should have been: introduction, main body, conclusion – like a textbook. If one must repeat, one should at least reword statements and consult a thesaurus…

“Finally (and I hate to say it, but someone’s got to) there are too many interrogatives; sometimes they come in bunches, and it’s not always easy, or at least for a layperson like me, to know if they’re rhetorical or not.”

For “Riding the Iron Rooster: By Train Through China” by Paul Theroux

“There is no doubt that Theroux can be caustic, but his cold appraisals should ring true for anyone who has traveled in China, at least to some degree. The problem with many China books is that they are often penned by people who are besotted by the Middle Kingdom and don’t wish to offend. But Paul Theroux doesn’t care who he offends. In any of his books. Period. He’s just trying to be honest, a quality that, for some odd reason, irks people. Perhaps such individuals would be better off with fiction…

“Despite a penchant for intellectual snobbery and a misanthropic streak (and what writer worth their salt doesn’t exhibit these qualities?), one thing Theroux is exceptionally good at is getting in on the ground level and talking to the people. This makes for many of the volume’s brighter and more revealing moments, like when he asks to see a commune and a group of Cantonese laugh so hard they almost fall over.”

For “The Road to Wigan Pier” by George Orwell

“They say a good book tells you what you already know (or suspect), and it’s probably for that reason I enjoyed this one so much. I live in one of Canada’s poorest cities, thoroughly blue collar. It’s hard not to look at the poor and start conjuring up ideas about social engineering. Give them an education, you think. Give them purpose. Break the cycle of generational poverty. I recently reread Marx and even voted for and joined Canada’s democratic socialist party, though I quickly wished I hadn’t. The rally I attended was dominated by “vegetarians with wilting beards” (or at least many of the local university’s bearded faculty), sixties’ activists, and “earnest ladies in sandals.” I was, quite frankly, put off by this, and by discussions in the crowd about the bright spots of the Soviet Union and a few of communism’s “great” men, the handing out of hammer-and-sickle adorned propaganda rags, etc. As Orwell writes, “the thinking person, by intellect usually left-wing but by temperament often right-wing, hovers at the gate of the Socialist fold. He is no doubt aware that he ought to be a Socialist. But he observes first the dullness of individual Socialists, then the apparent flabbiness of Socialist ideals, and veers away…

“The observant reader sees Gollancz’s foreword for what it is: a wretched attempt at censorship and damage control, and the very sort of empty rhetoric, hare-brained we-know-best thinking, and militant jingoism Orwell so skilfully obliterates.”

For “Hegemon: China’s Plan to Dominate Asia and the World” by Steven W. Mosher

“This is a very good book and could have been excellent with a bit of tweaking. To begin with, Mosher understands the Chinese mindset. The Chinese don’t possess, for example, a linear view of history and they still consider themselves culturally superior to everyone everywhere. They were once a mighty empire and so will they be again. Or so they believe. The twentieth century was just a temporary setback, etc. China deeply resents the West, and the US in particular, and Mosher explains in detail why…

“When casual observers and leaders in the West begin commenting on China, they seldom have any idea what they are talking about. Westerners tend to view China through a filter, applying their own system of thought to a culture and psyche they have little grasp of.”

For “The China Fantasy: How Our Leaders Explain Away Chinese Repression” by Jim Mann

“China is still run by a ruthless Leninist clique and there is NO evidence to suggest this will change in the foreseeable future.”

For “Red China Blues: My Long March From Mao to Now” by Jan Wong

“If you want to understand China, you will need to read a considerable range of titles in order to see the country, its history, people, culture and so on from numerous and unique angles.”

For “The Good Women of China: Hidden Voices” by Xinran

“until they start treating each other (both men and women) humanely, they will never be anything but pathetic.”

For Tibet, Tibet: A Personal History of a Lost Land” by Patrick French

I have been boning up on Chinese history and culture for nearly a decade now, and am to the point where I consider myself to be relatively well versed…

“Think Tibetans are a non-violent people? Read their history. Believe Buddhists to be a sagacious lot of semi-divine beings? Think again. Western leaders are going to stand up to China any day now, aren’t they? The author provides us with an overview of their sorry efforts to date. Not even the Dalai Lama, who French interviews (and deeply respects) is exempt from the writer’s newly found (compassionate) scrutiny.”

For “Lonely Planet China (Country Guide) by Robert Storey

“I spent two and a half months traveling around China and this is the book that I took with me.

Taiwan (Lonely Planet Taiwan: Travel  Survival Kit) by Andrew Bender

“A couple of summers ago, I took nearly three weeks and travelled all around Taiwan, an excursion which included three additional (or outlying) islands: Kinmen, Orchid Island, and Green Island.”

For “Mr. China: A Memoir” by Tim Clissold

“Although he certainly never intended it as such (MR.CHINA is subtitled “A Memoir” and has a target audience of gung ho, wanna-get-rich-investing-in-China business types) this is probably the most accurate and the most devastating portrayal of authentic Chinese culture since Bo Yang’s THE UGLY CHINAMAN. For those looking at becoming better aquainted with Chinese business culure, or more precisely: Chinese business ethics, here’s a free starter lesson:

“There aren’t any.

“Foreigners shouldn’t take this personally. The Chinese have been cheating each other as a matter of course for centuries. What’s more, they have been so poor and so oppressed for so long that they will go to nearly any extent in order to make their bundle and head for the hills…

“Scheming, swindling, duplicity, and general dishonesty are deeply, deeply ingrained aspects of the national psyche in China.”

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Note from Blog Host: I suggest you take this advice from Professor Kevin deLaplante if and when you run into a Parfitt.

“When someone is willing to knowingly misrepresent an argument,” Professor deLaplante says, “they are no longer playing by the rules. They are more concerned with the appearance of winning than with argumentation itself. When you see this going on, you should correct the misrepresentation and get the discussion back on track. If it is an honest mistake and the arguer is willing to correct their misunderstanding, that is great. But if you catch them doing this again and again, then there is probably no point in engaging argumentatively with this person, because they have shown you that they are unwilling to play by the rules.”

In fact, Mr. Parfitt is no longer welcome on this site. If his comments appear, they will only appear on this post.

Return to Discovering Intellectual Dishonesty – Part 1/10

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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