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I am confused here. Whatever fallacy you want to put forward, he is making a hypocritical statement is he not?

Absolutely! He is a hypocrite.

Rand Pauls asks Kathleen Hogan if she is pro-choice (implicitly with respect to abortion).

Her evasive response is, "I, uh, pro-choice of [light] bulbs."

He responds: "The point is that most members of your administration probably would be frank and would be up front to characterize themselves as being pro-choice for abortion. But you’re really anti-choice on every other consumer item that you’ve listed here, including light bulbs, refrigerators, toilets, you name it."

He's is certainly complaining about the loss of choice with respect to every other ("you name it") consumer item, but is he making a valid argument?

If he has an argument, as I see it, it is:

1) If one is pro-choice with respect to abortion, then logically one should be pro-choice with respect to every other ("you name it") consumer item.

2) Ms. Hogan is pro-choice with respect to abortion -- or, if her evasive answer leaves any doubt about her position, then "most members of [her] administration probably would be frank and would be up front to characterize themselves as being pro-choice for abortion -- yet she (and those other pro-choice-with-respect-to-abortion people, surely not limited to those on the left) is not pro-choice with respect to every other ("you name it") consumer item.

3) Therefore Ms. Hogan (and other pro-choice with respect to abortion individuals in her administration) is a hypocrite and has no basis for arguing against pro-choice with respect to every other ("you name it") consumer item.

Edit: Is that the "valid argument," 2046?

Edited by Trebor

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There's lots of ways of making the point that liberals are generally more "pro-choice" in social issues than in economic issues (and that this is hypocritical) without using something as inflammatory as abortion, especially for someone who himself isn't pro-choice on abortion. At the very least, its a very poor choice of rhetoric.

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Whether someone is a hypocrite or not doesn't mean they have no basis for arguing against something, that is exactly the tu quoque fallacy. For instance, even if the witness is a hypocrite, we can't conclude that bulbs shouldn't be banned strictly from that alone. His argument, on the other hand, is simply that we have nothing less than a glaring contradiction on our hands with regard to the principle of choice advocated by the witness and and her administration, so he asked her to justify this. Which she failed to do.

Now with regard to Trebor, you seem to think that since Rand Paul doesn't support abortion, that makes his argument against the witness invalid, but that is fallacious.

Now with regard to the question of whether or not Rand Paul is also a hypocrite for being anti-abortion, that is a different matter. Certainly, since we know that abortion involves the right of a person to her own body, then abortion restrictions are restrictions on choice. But from Rand Paul's point of view, God creates each person, even before they are conceived, and interfering with His will is wrong. Thus, his position goes, since personhood begins at conception, abortion would qualify as murder of a person. If Rand Paul's position is a religious one, then he cannot be accused of hypocrisy (a dishonesty, a double standard), but simply a single standard (i.e. a mystical, and hence wrong, standard.)

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If his position is that abortion is murder (an egregious violation of rights), then he is asserting that if one is pro-choice with respect to murder, then logically one should be pro-choice -- respect the rights of individuals to produce and purchase -- with respect to all other ("you name it") consumer items.

Edit: You, 2046, did not respond to my question. Was the argument as I stated it (above in post #24) the valid argument which you say that Paul made?

Edit: By "the argument as I stated it," I did not mean that argument as a argument that he is a hypocrite. The argument (1, 2 & 3) is the sole argument I was/am asking about.

Edited by Trebor

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If his position is that abortion is murder (an egregious violation of rights), then he is asserting that if one is pro-choice with respect to murder, then logically one should be pro-choice -- respect the rights of individuals to produce and purchase -- with respect to all other ("you name it") consumer items.

Edit: You, 2046, did not respond to my question. Was the argument as I stated it (above in post #24) the valid argument which you say that Paul made?

That's right, but since the argument is made within the framework of the fact that the other person doesn't think this is murder, it is still a contradiction, and his pointing it out is valid. The witness either has to admit her inconsistency, or has to conclude that she should to stop restricting choices if she wants to be consistent.

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Okay. Thank you for taking the time to explain your point. I think I understand now. (Though I need to think about it more.)

Edit to add: I retract my assertion, with apology to Mr. Rand, that Rand Paul is a hypocrite on the basis of his exchange with Ms. Hogan. I was wrong. I believe that he believes that abortion is murder, and I think that his challenge to Ms. Hogan was appropriate.

Edited by Trebor

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Whether someone is a hypocrite or not doesn't mean they have no basis for arguing against something, that is exactly the tu quoque fallacy.

But why do it if it only is a detriment to your own argument. Why not make a statement that could have made the same point (he could have EASILY done this) without making a comparison of which he is not even consistent on. Instead of applauding his remarks to the energy committee I am making fun of his attempt and lost respect (of what was left) for his supposed principles because he made this poor and hypocritical comparison.

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Whether someone is a hypocrite or not doesn't mean they have no basis for arguing against something, that is exactly the tu quoque fallacy.

But why do it if it only is a detriment to your own argument. Why not make a statement that could have made the same point (he could have EASILY done this) without making a comparison of which he is not even consistent on. Instead of applauding his remarks to the energy committee I am making fun of his attempt and lost respect (of what was left) for his supposed principles because he made this poor and hypocritical comparison.

I think that I now understand the issue (the "tu quoque" fallacy) well enough to comment on your question. [2046, please correct me if I'm in error.]

"But why do it if it is only a detriment to your own argument."

It actually isn't a detriment to his argument. His argument is basically: Ms. Hogan, you (or others of your ilk) are pro-choice with respect to abortion, yet you are not pro-choice with respect to every other ("you name it") consumer item. That's contradictory (which it is). Why the contradiction? His own view with respect to abortion (or "pro-choice") is not in play, as it were, only Ms. Hogan's view is brought up and challenged as contradictory.

I don't know that he could have as easily done this (make the same point) as effectively. It is precisely because abortion is highly controversial that it is effective. Hogan (presumably, or at least others of her ilk) stands firmly on one side of that controversial issue, the pro-choice side with respect to abortion. What Paul has done is similar to taking Michael Moore to task: Mr. Moore, you say that all money belongs to everyone. Well then, what the hell are you doing keeping "your own" money for yourself? Asking that question of Moore does not require or imply agreement (or disagreement) with his assertion that all money belongs to everyone (the people); it is merely pointing out the contradiction Moore apparently holds.

"...without making a comparison of which he is not ever consistent on." Where is he being inconsistent? (This is the problem I was having. I so despise him for his view with respect to abortion, that his position on abortion seemed relevant to the exchange he had with Ms. Hogan. It's not, not logically; it has no bearing on his challenge to Ms. Hogan. Such does not imply agreement with his view on abortion.)

If the tables were turned, were Ms. Hogan sitting on a committee questioning Paul about his position with respect to abortion, Ms. Hogan might state: You, Mr. Paul, are not pro-choice with respect to abortion, yet you are pro-choice with respect to every other ("you name it") consumer item. That's a contradiction. How do you explain it? And he would simply say: Abortion is murder (from conception on); there's no right to murder; therefore abortion is not a pro-choice issue. The right to choose does not include the right to choose to murder someone.

His view on abortion certainly calls for challenge, but the challenge will have to be on why it is that he maintains it to be murder, etc.

For the record, I despise both Ms. Hogan and Mr. Paul.

Edited by Trebor

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Today, on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Rand Paul was out there, speaking to a crowd of anti-choice voters, telling them that the government should deny women the choice to an abortion.

Doesn't an unborn child get a choice?

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Doesn't an unborn child get a choice?

Is any one else here starting to think that "Moral-izer" might be a more apt screen name for this individual?

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Today, on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Rand Paul was out there, speaking to a crowd of anti-choice voters, telling them that the government should deny women the choice to an abortion. So much for his libertarian credentials.

Actually, I think anti-abortion position is consistent with libertarianism. The outcome of one's stand on that position depends on values that one is committed to apart from the non-aggression principle of libertarianism. This principle does not really tell us one thing or another about the status of the fetus. One can consistently accept libertarianism while both accepting or not accepting the rights of a fetus.

But Rand Paul has said, esp. during his senatorial campaign, that he isn't a libertarian anyway.

Edited by 2046

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Moralist (some one who attempts to be moral) is to moralizer much the same way as Rationalist (one who attempts to be rational) is to rationalizer.

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I still don't understand. Are you saying that he's starting with a moral position then justifying it? Is "moralizer" a portmanteau of moral and rationalizer?

Edit: I have to be honest, I don't know how this discussion is productive. If you think he's wrong about something, just come out and say it. But it's best for all involved if you're willing to back it up with a friendly argument.

Edited by FeatherFall

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Actually, I think anti-abortion position is consistent with libertarianism. ... ...
Yes, you have a point there. Libertarianism does not have much of an underlying philosophy, allowing people like Paul to hold mystical Christianity as being consistent with their other beliefs. So, I guess one cannot fault him for inconsistency, just for being anti individual rights.

For more on abortion, see this thread: http://forum.objectivismonline.com/index.php?showtopic=14916&st=1250#entry304523

**** Mod's note ****

For a discussion on whether Libertarianism has a philosophy, see this split topic.

Edited by softwareNerd

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Actually, I think anti-abortion position is consistent with libertarianism. The outcome of one's stand on that position depends on values that one is committed to apart from the non-aggression principle of libertarianism. This principle does not really tell us one thing or another about the status of the fetus. One can consistently accept libertarianism while both accepting or not accepting the rights of a fetus.

I'm in agreement here.

Although I would consider myself anti-abortion I am still pro-choice for the woman as an actual person's rights must come before the potential person's rights.

Nonetheless, I'd take Rand Paul over most of what is out there. He was less extreme about being anti choice several years ago. He seems to have changed his mind.

But overall, he's better than most since I don't see anyone running for any major office that is "perfect".

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Today, on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Rand Paul was out there, speaking to a crowd of anti-choice voters, telling them that the government should deny women the choice to an abortion. So much for his libertarian credentials.

Now, to top it, Rand Paul has introduced a bill to give rights to the unborn. These types of "personhood" bills are the worst type of anti-abortion measure.

Increasingly, it seems to me that Rand Paul is more serious about a career as a conservative Republican politician than his dad was. This particular bill has zero chance of passing, so Rand is doing it as a symbolic gesture.

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Another symbolic gesture?

 

If memory serves correctly, the proposal for adopting daylight savings time was repeatedly put up for consideration (here in Michigan) . . . until it passed.

Is there a Gresham's law with regard to the relationship between politicians and statesmen?

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