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Tuesday, October 24, 2017

The Flat Earth Gish Gallop

The Gish Gallop is a rhetorical strategy where the person tries to show just how amazingly strong and vast their position is by presenting a litany of arguments all at once, and if you only address 99 out of 100 of them then you get the "AH HA! You can't address how water sticks to a spinning ball!"

From the Rational WIKI

The Gish Gallop should not be confused with the argumentum ad nauseam, in which the same point is repeated many times. In a Gish Gallop, many bullshit points are given all at once.

Indeed - if the Flat Earth argument were strong then ONE demonstration would be enough to destroy the Globe.  But Flat Earth doesn't have even one that will hold up to scrutiny so they would rather throw a bunch of bullshit (technical term) and see what sticks.

One 'Mrs. Butterworth' tried to pull this by proxy in a YouTube comment:

Please.  "usually pretty good" but can't address this utter nonsense?  Not ONE of these is even a technical challenge.  All you need is a dictionary.

This sets off my SOCK PUPPET alarms like crazy, and I called them out on it.  They said they aren't so, Ok fine, it doesn't really matter for my purposes... here we go... [link to my posted reply, included below slightly edited]

First of all, nearly all of this is already covered on my blog:

"You speak of science and science fact. Then what about the scientific method? Last time I checked, it begins with observation. When was the last time anyone observed the curvature of the Earth, and please don't include fake Nasa cgi cartoons."

Strawman, Misleading, Lies about not making observations, Lies about NASA

We have thousands of observations -- Flat Earthers simply dismiss them without justification to do so and are, apparently, too dumb to do their own tests.  They do FALSE tests and lie.

Here are some collected observations:

Soundly has some amazing images & videos.

Wolfie6020 has done a ton of observations.

A new post I just did showing how to access the National Geodetic Survey Database with tens of thousands of direct measurements of the 'curve' in there.  Flat Earthers just wave their hands and ignore it -- which is on them.  They are too dumb to replicate the data so they lose.

This is not an honest argument from flat earthers in the slightest.

"Here's one example that includes scientific evidence: How can you see both the sun and moon in the same sky?"

Strawman, Self-Debunk

That's JUST DUMB -- hold two spheres (representing moon and sun) in front of two different people -- they can both see them.  BIG WHOOP.

Hold up a ping pong ball to the Moon so the terminator (shadow line) is aligned -- They'll match.  That is impossible with a nearby Sun.

"What, people on the other side of the ball get neither?"

That isn't English so I have no idea.  What is the logical fallacy for 'gibberish'?

But on a Flat Earth with a 'nearby' Moon observers far apart should see opposite sides of the Moon and they do not.  And their nonsense "concave moon" EXCUSE doesn't work due to libration of the moon.

"Here's another, why is the moonlight colder in the shade if it reflects the sun's light?"


It isn't, open sky is colder than covered spaces.  I tested it on a moonless night (negative testing!)

Flat Earthers don't know how to actually test anything.  I call this a Lie because they pretend like they have actually tested it and ruled out all other possibilities -- they haven't.  This asserting it KNOWING you haven't actually tested it is the lie.

"Why is the heliocentric model a theory and not a fact?"

Strawman, Lie

This person is either ignorant or is lying.  Let's define these terms correctly...

A scientific FACT is something directly and repeatedly measured.  If something is 100% measurable it can become a scientific LAW.  Such as the LAW OF GRAVITY.

[by '100% measurable' I meant the measurement is accounted for by the known variables to the margin of error, if you tried to measure human response to some stimuli there are too many unknowns and you won't get a repeatable measurement, even from the same person so while you might get trends you aren't likely to get a LAW]

A scientific THEORY is a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world, based on a body of FACTS that have been repeatedly confirmed through observation and experiment.

LAWS do not become THEORIES -- EVER.  They are different categories.  A scientific THEORY IS the highest form of knowledge in science.

A scientific MODEL is a "testable idea".  The heliocentric MODEL has been tested and confirmed billions of times.  Flat Earthers have NEVER demonstrate that it is false.  Period.

Flat Earth has been tested and FAILED... over and over.  Flat Earth liars make excuses for their failures or ignore them.

"Why is gravity a theory and not a fact?"


There are both a LAW OF GRAVITY (what we measure) and a THEORY OF GRAVITY (relativity says that spacetime determines how matter moves and matter tells spacetime how to bend).  Relativity COULD be wrong -- but since EVERY measurement to date conforms to Relativity and it made Astonishing predictions that have held up it is THE BEST model of gravity we have.

Furthermore I explain why the utterly puerile "density" claim that Flat Earthers push is WRONG in "Oh Buoyancy!"

"Why is evolution a theory and not a fact?"


There is the FACT OF EVOLUTION (evolution observed happening) and the THEORY OF EVOLUTION (that it is driven by Natural Selection).  Look up 'Creationists Claims' for further debunking of this BS.

"Why is the big bang, an explosion that created everything but destroyed nothing, a theory and not a fact?"


Big Bang wasn't an explosion.

"Why can you not soak a tennis ball with water, have it spin even 1 mph, and not have the water fly off?"

Strawman, Lie

#1 Because it's an utterly bogus and false test.  The tennis ball is subject to Earth's gravity while lacking sufficent mass of it's own.
#2 the water does NOT fly off an equivaliently rotating tennis ball -- SOME WATER does but proportionally a greater thickness of water remains on the tennis ball than exists on Earth.

"Why does the coriolis effect have no influence on airplanes?"


 It does, it is very small.  Similarly, airplanes DO have to pitch over as they fly, it's called holding altitude / keeping vertical airspeed near zero.

"Why is Nasa run by freemasons wherein the challenger explosion was a hoax, not to mention the fake Apollo missions?"

Assertion -- claims not evidenced

"Why do they shove this shit in our faces in movies, television, and music?"

Appeal to Emotion

Are you a child?   (would be my response)

"Why haven't you woken up?"

Ad hominem

Apparently 'woke' means 'moron' now.  Ad hominem back at ya.

A few questions back to Flat Earth:

How does Flat Earth have TWO different equatorial circumferences?

Why can't flat earth locate Polaris?

Curve found again

and again

and again

Flat Earth fails at perspective

In summary, every one of their arguments wasn't just wrong, it was vapid, puerile, and evidenced a profound level of ignorance on their part, as well as a heavy dose of dishonesty.

Unfortunately, it takes ten times the effort to dispel some uneducated verbal vomit than it does to state something so vapid and pointless (see Brandolini's Law - or maybe it should be credited to Uriel Fanelli?).  And it's even worse if the third parties in question don't have the background to debunk something themselves.  I cannot overcome a lifetime of indifference to knowledge in a few sentences.  The reader has to WANT to learn the reasons why the Flat Earth arguments wrong.

It makes me WEEP for the state of education in our world in the supposed 21st century, there were better educated people in the BCE era!

Flat Earthers CLAIM to want to know the Truth but they sure do not evidence it in their argumentation.

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