Gerry Myerson wrote: > In article <firstname.lastname@example.org>, > "Peter Webb" <email@example.com> wrote: [snip] > > > > Well, the discussion that I have seen - on this newsgroup (sci.math or > > sci.logic, I can't remember) - is that it is bullshit. > > Ad hominem. [snip] > > > > I don't know about the "mathematical establishment" (as a whole) not > > understanding "elementary mathematics", but your own writings on set theory > > and the axiomatic method don't fill me with confidence. > > Ad hominem. [snip] > > > > This is pure crank stuff. Describing a huge and extremely rigorously defined > > area such as the construction of the Reals as a "joke" without any > > mathematical justification is flakey at best; the phrase "computational > > specification of the continuum" (a phrase that gets exactly zero matches on > > Google) is crank babble. > > The mathematical justification for describing the current theory of > real numbers as a joke is given in the paper. You may not find it > convincing - I may not find it convincing - but it's there. > > "Crank babble" is ad hominem. > [snip] > > > Your paper has no mathematical content, and is pure crank stuff. The stuff > > about Axioms somehow being irrelevant to mathematics is just your own > > philosophical ramblings. Surprising, since you seem to accept the axioms of > > group theory, but not set theory (because they are too complicated and too > > abstract for your liking)? Do groups with an infinite number of elements > > exist, by the way? > > More ad hominem. Norm accepts the axioms of group theory as the > definition of what a group is, and has no problem with them because > he can construct (finite) models of them. He argues that the axioms > of set theory (in particular, ZFC) don't define what a set is and > don't lead to sensible constructions of infinite sets. >
An ad hominem fallacy is of the form:
Person P made argument A
Person P is ignorant/poor/gay/female/stupid/handicapped/etc
Therefore argument A is invalid.
It is *not* ad hominem to say:
Person Q made argument B
Argument B is incoherent/lacks reasoning/lacks evidence/is purely assertion/is muddled/makes categorical errors/equivocates/is nonsense/is irrelevant/etc
Therefore person Q is ignorant/poorly read/uninformed/unreasonable/stupid/irrelevant/etc
Sure, such a statement may be insulting. But it isn't invalid.
[snip] > > -- > Gerry Myerson (firstname.lastname@example.org) (i -> u for email)