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  • #61
    Originally posted by Gorbag View Post
    I already wrote in the OP that there would be NO obligatory exercise
    So they're trapped in a camp, surrounded by armed jackboot thugs, and are NOT forced to exercise. Well that makes everything better.

    and what happens AFTER the experiment is not a topic for the thread either, as I also have mentioned before...
    You can't deal with obesity without taking dietary recidivism into account. So now your study is not only morally corrupt, but the information is incomplete and inconclusive. Josef Mengele does not approve.
    Last edited by Chaohinon; 12-27-2012, 01:18 PM.
    “The whole concept of a macronutrient, like that of a calorie, is determining our language game in such a way that the conversation is not making sense." - Dr. Kurt Harris

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    • #62
      Originally posted by quelsen View Post
      A thought experiment considers some hypothesis, theory, or principle for the purpose of thinking through its consequences. Given the structure of the experiment, it may or may not be possible to actually perform it, and, in the case that it is possible for it to be performed, there need be no intention of any kind to actually perform the experiment in question. The common goal of a thought experiment is to explore the potential consequences of the principle in question.
      That is the form of a thought experiment. However, it isn't the purpose (goal) of a thought experiment. It can't be the purpose because the results of a thought experiment are not rigorous or representative of nature. You simply cannot use a thought experiment to figure out how large populations of morbidly obese individuals would fare on starvation diets. You can't use one to figure out how radioactive decay works or how we should best pair organ donors and recipients. If that's your intent, you have lost the way. They can tell us how humans think, which is interesting, but not how human bodies react to malnourishment ... or any other fact of the natural world.

      Take the famous Schrodenger's Cat thought experiment. What was its purpose? Not to establish whether cats could be placed in boxes, nor whether cats would die if poisoned. It was to communicate an idea. A very counter-intuitive idea that is hard to explain in words. An idea that someone had and couldn't get others to adopt.

      If I was to simply state that something you know exists, and know can be in only a single state at a time, and can only be in a finite number of states, but which you cannot perceive, is in EVERY state all the time, you would argue. You would say I was full of it. If I sugar coat that idea with a cute cat, some poison, a bit of radioactive decay, and of course a box because everyone loves boxes, you might worry at the problem long enough to come to the conclusion I'm trying to lead you to...which isn't that a cat is both alive and dead if you put it in a box like that. In simple terms it's that when it could be either, and you cannot know, you must calculate for both. If I tell you I'm sugar coating an idea I don't think you'll swallow, that'll probably hamper my efforts too... so instead I must call it a "thought experiment". It's mental judo.

      That's why people are reacting to this being couched as a thought experiment. Thought experiments are a tool with a purpose. Most people here seem to assume that Gorbag knows what that purpose is and is using the tool correctly. Personally, I'm not convinced of that - it could go either way, and I can't really know, so......

      Last edited by Him; 12-27-2012, 02:05 PM.

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      • #63
        Originally posted by Him View Post
        Personally, I'm not convinced of that - it could go either way, and I can't really know, so......

        I see what you did there.
        The Champagne of Beards

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        • #64
          This doesn't sound like a thought experiment to me. It sounds more like a fantasy.
          Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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          • #65
            So you still don't know what a thought experiment is. Hint: It's not a plan of action.

            Do you understand he is not advocating to actually do this? That it's merely a convenient fiction that establishes that the diet is completely controlled?

            Surely you understand this. Well, I guess not.

            Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
            Wow. You honestly don't realize what a jerk you sound like.

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            • #66
              Does he have some history of heinous posts that make you think that?

              Originally posted by sbhikes View Post
              This doesn't sound like a thought experiment to me. It sounds more like a fantasy.

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              • #67
                But he didn't propose something like a closed ward study. There's a huge difference between discussing what would happen in a closed ward with volunteer participants and asking people to imagine locking fat people into a camp with armed guards and speculate whether some people would die of starvation during the process (seriously, WTF?).
                “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

                Owly's Journal

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                • #68
                  Yeah, those little touches about the prison camp and the armed guards make it sound like some sort of punishment fantasy. Or probably more realistically, there's an underlying subconscious belief that fat people are so lacking in willpower it would take imprisonment and armed guards to prevent them from overeating.

                  The fantasy could just as easily have been to send them to a nice fat camp in a beautiful mountain paradise with massage therapy every afternoon. It would probably have even been a more effective intervention than prison camp, too, having some nature therapy (forest bathing) and stress relief. I wonder why such a nicer scenario didn't come to mind instead of the concentration camp fantasy?
                  Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                  • #69
                    sbhikes,

                    You and several others have fixated on the details that matter the least - that are, in fact, irrelevant to the questions posed.

                    Just look up the definition of "thought experiment." Until you do that and actually understand the meaning, you're just arguing from a position ignorance.

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                    • #70
                      Originally posted by primalcat View Post
                      So you still don't know what a thought experiment is. Hint: It's not a plan of action.

                      Do you understand he is not advocating to actually do this? That it's merely a convenient fiction that establishes that the diet is completely controlled?
                      You are right, it isn't a plan of action. That's correct and simultaneously irrelevant. Nobody is saying "ZOMG! Somebody stop him before he does this horrible thing!" People are saying that the way he seems to be thinking about other humans, as indicated by how he is expressing himself and what he sees as a "problem" suitable for expressing as a "thought experiment", is problematical.

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                      • #71
                        Fair enough. Thanks for clarifying. It's just that some of the responses seem very kneejerk and over-the-top.

                        Does the OP have a history of negative or hateful posts? If that is the case, then I understand. Otherwise, some people seem to be overreacting.

                        Originally posted by Him View Post
                        You are right, it isn't a plan of action. That's correct and simultaneously irrelevant. Nobody is saying "ZOMG! Somebody stop him before he does this horrible thing!" People are saying that the way he seems to be thinking about other humans, as indicated by how he is expressing himself and what he sees as a "problem" suitable for expressing as a "thought experiment", is problematical.

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                        • #72
                          No idea. For all I know he's a paragon if virtuous posting beyond anything I could hope to emulate. Life is too short to apply context in the analysis of online postings.

                          I do wonder if the "Gor" in his nym is intended to associate with the fictional world of Tarl Cabot. That would raise flags in many circles.

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                          • #73
                            I hear you. Not sure what you mean regarding "Gor" though.


                            Originally posted by Him View Post
                            No idea. For all I know he's a paragon if virtuous posting beyond anything I could hope to emulate. Life is too short to apply context in the analysis of online postings.

                            I do wonder if the "Gor" in his nym is intended to associate with the fictional world of Tarl Cabot. That would raise flags in many circles.

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                            • #74
                              Originally posted by primalcat View Post
                              I hear you. Not sure what you mean regarding "Gor" though.
                              I just mean I wonder if "Gorbag" is intended as reference to Gor?

                              Read down to "criticism" section.

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                              • #75
                                Got it. Thanks.

                                Originally posted by Him View Post
                                I just mean I wonder if "Gorbag" is intended as reference to Gor?

                                Read down to "criticism" section.

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