Paul Baird responded. He still doesn’t get it. (Surprise, suprise.)

I wonder when they are going to learn that it takes an argument to respond to an argument?

Paul asks “Where’s the beef?” – Which, of course, leads me immediately to ask “Would you know it if you saw it?” He addresses nothing whatsoever that I said. Nothing at all. Further, if he wants to know why I turned the comments off, he can look at out site rules to find out.

Here is his assertion. “It seems to me that the Pagan worldview I put up stands undefeated by Joshua Whipps.”

Isn’t that special? (To quote another 80’s pop culture meme) Now, care to tell us something, anything, about how you plan on demonstrating that? It’s all very well to give us an insight into your personal phantasmagoria, but it really is helpful if you actually say something substantive, instead of giving us your opinion, sans argumentation. Did you plan on dealing with what I said, or did you even bother reading it?

“Every criticism that you’ve made and every piece of firm ground that you claim, I can make and I can claim.”

Which, of course, he states without dealing with anything I’ve argued, specifically, that says this is not the case, and cannot be the case. That, however, would require critical thinking and logical argumentation – which he apparently can’t be bothered to apply himself to.

“It’s annoying isn’t it ? Now if your god would only just turn up it would settle everything wouldn’t it ? Without that your argument is no better than mine.”

What is annoying, Paul, is speaking to a brick wall. Just once, I’d love to encounter just a smidgen of critical thinking on the subject, instead of this bloody-minded obstinacy. At this point, I really do wonder if Paul even reads these. I’m really beginning to think that he doesn’t even bother, and just throws out condescending retorts when he doesn’t have a clue as to what he is responding to. If he is reading it, it’s patently obvious that he doesn’t understand it.

Lastly – he takes a quote from me, and clearly shows he has no idea what I’m actually saying – which is what I was telling him he was doing, and is proceeding to tell me I’m wrong about. Unfortunately, all he had to do was read the context, instead of skimming it for things to respond to with one-liners. He quotes:

“If he persists in doing so, he is going to be left as the only one discussing what he is discussing.”

What was I talking about, folks? Let’s, you know, actually read the context – like people interested in reading what other people are saying do.

“Reinterpreting our statements through his personal experience has done nothing but lead him astray from where the discussion is. If he persists in doing so, he is going to be left as the only one discussing what he is discussing. This is the case, because it bears no resemblance to what we are saying, nor does it accurately reflect what we believe. If he wants to rectify his problematic interpretation of what is being said, all he need do is begin asking questions, rather than making pronouncements about what the subject is. It’s really that simple. The problem is not that we are somehow “hiding” the argument away – it’s that Paul has shown almost no effort whatsoever toward understanding what the argument is, or what it means. It is not especially difficult, were he willing to put in that effort. I hope he does, and begins to ask, rather than to tell us.”

Notice: I point out that he is reinterpreting our statements through his personal experience. What did he just do? That exact thing. It led him astray. I am saying: “Paul is talking about what someone else believes, not what I believe, and eventually we’re going to give up on his perpetual strawman machine.” Paul, apparently, thinks I’m saying: “I don’t want to talk to you anymore”, and his response is “but you keep doing it!” His interpretation of what is being said is problematic. This needs to be rectified. To do so, he needs to ask, instead of pronounce. He doesn’t understand what we’re saying, in even the simplest of matters, and we’ve definitely put in an effort to help him to understand. Instead of taking what was said, he tells us what it means. Sorry to burst his bubble – but I said what I meant. If we are to take what I actually said, and respond with what he actually said, we are left with the fact that it “suits him” to be dealing with something no one else is talking about. As in, something that no one believes, where nobody thinks like he says they do, or holds to what he is critiquing. Apparently, this is adequate, to Paul Baird.

In any case, he doesn’t show any desire to learn, and less evidence of understanding what we’re talking about. So, unless he’s willing to start learning, and converse in an adult fashion, I really don’t have anything else I can say to him. As I said, I really hope he learns something from this – but sadly, he doesn’t seem willing. If he’s interested in having a conversation, he needs to listen to, and comprehend what his conversation partner is actually saying. Thus far, he simply hasn’t shown the least inclination toward doing so.