Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Facebook douche-bag

Some guy on facebook wrote a comment regarding Tony Blair's Trident nuclear programme which I found more than a little irritating. It reads thus:

"I could tear holes in this" (anti-trident argument) "a mile wide. Where to start? When you say "The only nuclear weapons ever dropped - at Hiroshima and Nagasaki" you mean to say "the only nuclear weapons used in anger". There have been many hundred uses of nuclear weapons in tests. A moot point, but accuracy is important. Do I even need to mention that the A-bombing of Japanese cities saved far, far more lives than it cost?

I very much doubt that replacing trident is costing £20bn a year, it seems more likely that that is the total cost and that you have misunderstood the figures (accuracy again). In any case, Trident is national security whereas tuition fees - or lack thereof - is about beer money. I went to uni, I got the graduate job and now I'm paying off the money I needed to get that advantage. I know some students have a hard time with this idea but *it isn't all about you*. There are other concerns. "

So I replied: "If you're going to advocate accuracy, shouldn't you be checking the figures yourself. "Highly doubting" has never been equivalent to scientific proof.
Stating that dropping nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki saved lives is also complete fantasy, unless you can tell us exactly how many people Japanese armies would have killed after August 6, 1945 if the bombs had not been dropped. To correctly compute the comparative death toll you would also have to include the 30 or so years of leukemia and other diseases caused by nuclear waste, and the unknown impact of the environmental damage that the bombs incurred. Your comment was purely speculative and highly inaccurate. Good luck with your graduate job. x"

After replying, I highly agreed with myself and perhaps even ventured a slight glow of smugness. But then I found myself growing increasingly annoyed. How, through such petty and pedantic little arguments, can you try to defend something as ultimately destructive as the nuclear bomb. But, more to the point, what is the point of doing so, what is his agenda? Surely any person with even a trace of common sense can see that nuclear weaponry and the proliferation of nuclear armament is catastrophic for everyone? Think about it!


Anonymous telos said...

- the 20-25 billion cost is indeed a total
- the only two bombs dropped offensively are the hiroshima and nagasaki bombs but many have been dropped for tests

both true statements, and the mistakes were worth mentioning.

but i fail to see how pointing them out in itself constitutes an argument. "you mis-stated a couple of things in your argument - therefore your argument is crap and the opposite argument is good".... logical fallacy. something similar to a straw man argument, i think.

4:23 PM  

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