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Re: Shang script among Olmecs

This is the last I'll put out on this topic, ng readers are free to draw 
their own conclusions on this matter.  My opinion is that Yuri should
apologize for using what I consider to be a selective quote.

In article <589qcn$nih@news1.io.org> yuku@io.org (Yuri Kuchinsky) writes:
>Peter van Rossum (pmv100@psu.edu) wrote:
>: I disagree with you completely with on this point.  Any valid research 
>: should always not only point up one possibility, but whenever possible 
>: should also try to consider alternative possibilities.  
>I have 5 people who are arguing against me here. Now, you also want myself
>to argue against myself? How interesting...

I am not talking about arguing with yourself.  I am talking about supplying 
quotes in their proper context when you supply them.  It is just plain 
dishonest scholarship to include only that portion of a quote which supports 
your interpretation and completely ignore the subsequent sentences which 
cast some doubt on that evidence.  As we've agreed in the past, this is
not supposed to be an "argument" where you simply try to win your case,
its supposed to be an objective "search for the truth about what happened."
You undermine the faith people have in your truth-seeking efforts when you
don't supply accurate data.  And undermine their faith even further when 
you won't admit to making a mistake.  How you can argue with this is a 
complete mystery to me.

>: The fact is that when you read the quote you put forward it seems to 
>: imply that the argument is that these are all solid evidence of diffusion.  
>You misunderstand. Neither I nor Jett consider them as solid evidence of
>diffusion. I consider them as solid candidates for the kind of a "smoking
>gun" that _you_ seek. I also think that this kind of a "smoking gun" will
>not be solid evidence of diffusion! Can you see it now?

Please explain how an object can be a solid candidate for a "smoking gun" 
artifact that would conclusively prove Old/New World contact, and yet at
the same time not be evidence of Old/New World diffusion?  Diffusion can
only take place when two cultures come into contact with each other. If
you can prove that they have come into contact, you greatly strengthen
the case for the diffusion of non-artifactual cultural traits.  If you 
can't show that two cultures were in contact, it makes the argument of
a diffusion of ideas much more tenuous. CAN YOU SEE IT NOW??????????

>The reason I did not include this passage is precisely because it may have
>caused a misunderstanding of the sort I indicate.

Well that's your story and you seem to be sticking to it, but I for one
am not buying it - others can conclude what they wish.

>: The fact, however, is that the author of the article goes on to point out 
>: the problem with evaluating these possible "smoking guns."  You can 
>: claim that you don't have time to rewrite the whole article but these 
>: qualifying sentences came directly after the quote you posted, and took 
>: me less than 5 minutes to type in.   The inclusion of these sentences 
>: substantially alters the reading of the previous information which you 
>: presented.
>According to you, but not in my view.
>: I think its pretty clear that you chose your quote very selectively to try 
>: to make your case appear more solid than it was. 
>A matter of interpretation.
>: In the past I have 
>: found you to be truthful in posts, but this time I conclude you were being 
>: purposefully deceptive.
>I consider this an unjust accusation.

Consider it what you will but I have seen nothing to change my opinion on
this matter.

>: >Why, on earth, should have I felt any obligation to include that passage
>: >in my post? You can't really expect me to type in the whole book for you,
>: >can you?
>: The reason you should have felt an obligation to include that short passage 
>: is because it is very important to an evaluation of the passage which you did 
>: cite. 
>People can always look for themselves, read the whole article, and form
>their own opinion. You think the readers of this group are dummies or

This is really playing fast and loose.  As you and I are well aware, many ng
readers either don't have access to relevant materials or don't have the time
to pursue them in detail.  Therefore, when something is included as a direct
quote, its fair to assume that most ng readers will not, and should not have 
to, verify that the quote is accurate and in proper context.  The reader puts
their trust in the idea that the person supplying the quote has done so 
accurately.  To suggest that is the responsibility of readers to verify each
and every quote you post is absurd.

>: That's just being honest.
>Well, this is how you argue. You accuse me of all kinds of sins only
>because I failed to include some passage in my quote! This is a completely
>absurd nitpick. You are acting like judge and jury to condemn me because I
>didn't include a passage that is important _according to you_. Really... 

Do you deny that the inclusion of the extra sentences substantially alters
the level of confidence we can have in the legitimacy of the "smoking guns"
supplied in the quote you used?  Do you really think that it is nitpicking
to ask for complete and accurate quotes?  Can you cite a single instance
where I have done what you did?  Get real..........

>I wonder why should I take you seriously, Peter? So far you seem to be
>happy to argue for the sake of arguing and to fling at me any tiny
>suspicion of yours that only seems like a figment of your imagination... 
>And you spend all this bandwidth _only_ to discuss someone's motivations
>and personal qualities. Style over substance, indeed. Why whould I bother
>about all these irrelevancies? 

Oh bulls**t, Yuri.  I have engaged you in substantive debates on a regular
basis.  While you tend to rely on summary books by Campbell, Needham and 
now "Man Across the Sea," I have tended to track down the primary research
and subsequent research to see what they hold - in general they tend to 
weaken the arguments you have made.  If that's not a reason for taking me 
seriously then you've got your head up your ass.

Peter van Rossum