This is, well, I don't know what this is. Let's just say that "this is", and see what kind of soggy mess we have at the end. Oh, if you're not mathematically inclined, don't worry, neither was this guy so it doesn't matter! HA!

So, on youtube I'm having a discussion with some dipshit, and he's trying, essentially, to back me into a philosophical corner of some variety. At first I thought maybe he's a dualist, but it didn't quite fit. So then I started to suspect solipsist as the likelier candidate; I'm still leaning in that direction and eventually you, dear reader, will understand why.

In short, he made the claim that all "isms" are immoral without exception. I bring up humanitarianism. He then goes on some something about my not feeding children in Tanzania. So, I go straight up fucking Johnnie Cochran on his ass: if'n I ain't capable, I ain't culpable. Then he brings up anti-natalism as somehow standing in contrast to humanitarianism.

*boggle*

Yes, so I go on and gently point out that humanitarianism deals with people who are already alive, not ones who might one day be alive, and anti-natalism deals with just not creating more people. Then it's some shit about moral failing when we're down to only a few and no one can take care of anyone else. Again, I mention it might suck, but that doesn't make it immoral: no capability, no culpability. In retrospect, I shouldn't have been channeling Johnnie Cochran so much as OJ if you know what I mean! (and I think that you do!)

Why is this bit important? Because I'm annoyed and I wanted to share it with you. You're welcome.

Then we get to discussing science and "proof" - a concept not relevant in science. There's either evidence, or not. I explain that proofs are the realm of mathematics and logic. And I might have noted somewhere along the way that if he started studying today, in five or six years he'd be comfortable writing some proofs. This is why I shouldn't predict the future; I suck at it.

He asked me to define some words, I directed him to the dictionary because, you know, it's the dictionary. He equated it with the bible, apparently oblivious to the category error there. One tells you what god says you're supposed to do, one tells you what we've collectively decided some arrangement of letters will mean.

The dictionary's definition for words is my definition. Let's call dictionary definition a, and my definition b. Or, if you're not into a and b, pick whatever you'd like except for x, y and z. I'll be needing those later. Well, with this dipshit, I really didn't. But, well, FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK!

I'm turning on some Weirld Al music: "Perform This Way". Maybe I should pick up a valium salt lick next time I'm out of the house. Just chuck that motherfucker down over here on the table and every so often just lean over and a little lick. That'd help.

Ok, so, we're interested in a and b, and I decided to show him how some types of proofs work. For those of you who are lucky enough not to know, all proofs kind of start off the same. We make the very necessary first step of having something we want to prove. In this case, a and b are equal, say.

What next? Well, and this is a hypercritical step: make a clever observation. I know, I know, it sounds obvious. But it isn't. Even for seasoned mathematicians this is true. I remember one time some of my friends and I probably spent an hour trying to figure out how we managed to fuck-up some partial derivative of, I think, an ellipse. By the end of it we had probably half a dozen mathematicians working on this intractable first term calculus problem. We just couldn't figure it. It might have been because we used to duck out midday and grab beers. Who knows? Anyway, thankfully campus had some students on it. One of them, a woman even! yay!, helped us out. "It's an ellipse" she says. She was fucking-a brilliant. Oh, of course! There's a period and we're not in it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! bwahahaha

Anyway, so I thought I'd choose a trivial variety of proof. Arithmetic. You laugh. You laugh. It's not funny. At all. Fuck you for laughing at me. Anyway, here's how the proof process works.

Clever observation. in this case I made the very wise decision to start by noticing that x = x.

With me so far? Good, cos I know you're all kind of dumb - amirite?! Sorry, still bitter.

Bear in mind the ultimate goal I have in mind: to prove that a = b. The dictionary definition and mine are the same that is.

Here I'm going to be a little technical because it never fails that some asshole mathematician happens by and drops some flip fucking comment about not being a perfectly elegant proof. If you're that guy/gal, go fuck yourself. I'm writing a blog, not lecturing.

I need to demonstrate a couple of properties of my arithmetic structure before much headway can be made.

So, for x, x=x (1)

for x and y, x=y and y=x (2)

and for x, y and z, x=y, and y=z, so x=z (3)

What's all of that for? Well, I need to tease out the structure to make sure that it's 1.) reflexive, 2.) symmetric and 3.) transitive. Remember, we're trying to prove that a = b. But you can't just start out by saying they're equal because you define them that way. You've got to show it.

What's this all mean?

Think of siblings. You start off knowing you're you. Then you notice you have an older sister, Mary, and you're related to her. Well, if you're related to her, she's related to you. Then she notices that she has an older sister, Muriel. So, if you're related to Mary and Mary is related to Muriel, then you have to be related to Muriel too, right? Your older sister's sister can't not be your sister . . .

Bored yet? Annoyed yet? Yes, proofs can be tedious. That's why it's called mathematical "rigor". Rigor is our codeword for anal-retentive. So, having shown equality relationships, we move to a and b.

Now it only remains to relate all of these together so if we take the natural numbers, to include 0, then a has the following property {a|>=0} and if a = b, then {b|>=0}. Right. ugly as hell, and you might be asking why I'm writing it in this goofy form.

I had to do this in 500 characters because, you know, youtube. So, this is part of the Peano Axioms, and it's sufficient for my purposes on youtube. I'm trying to show in a methodical way that a (dictionary definition) is equal to b (my definition). But he kept demanding proof, so I wanted to show him how abstruse and tedious it can get - in hurry. And this proof isn't complete; further, I left out a lot of non-trivial information which I'm sure some asshole will come by and call me out on.

Swear to FSM, I'll throw my cat in the freezer just so that I have a frozen cat to beat the shit out of you if you do.

So, our buddy on youtube takes one look and responds, "I don't accept x = x".

Yes, now I'm glad I could share my frustration with you. After condensing all of that shit down to 500 character, he doesn't accept that something is itself. What a douche. By the way, this is why I'm thinking solipsist, but stupid even for a solipsist.

Sorry for that long post for nothing at the end. We're even now.

Well-played, huh?

## 3 comments:

Yeah... just remember: all solipsists are trolls. Don't feed the trolls.

Also, remember Weiner's Conjecture: the simpler the concept, the harder the proof, right? Proof that 1+1=2? Pain in the ass. Proof that things can equal other things? Fuck you, I'm going home. This guy takes it one step too far. Proof that x=x? x=x QED.

Yeah, he's got lot of stupid going on. I'm usually pretty fine with letting whoever take me wherever in the discussion they want. I'll concede as many of the points as necessary, because it doesn't detract from the final gambit.

But fucking saying you don't accept that something is itself? Blow me.

Weiner's Conjecture? That sending cock shots to a co-ed in Washington state wouldn't get back to his wife?

HA! I kill me!

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