View Poll Results: Is Jonathan Sarfati a logician?

Voters
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  • Yes the claim is accurate and defensible

    11 52.38%
  • No, not really, but for marketing purposes, who cares? Caveat emptor.

    1 4.76%
  • No the claim is misleading and should be retracted

    9 42.86%
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  1. #1
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Jonathan Sarfati - Logician or the greatest hoax on earth?

    In the marketing for Jono's latest book the claim is made that Jono is a logician.

    Scientist, logician, chessmaster and author of the world’s biggest-selling creationist book, CMI’s Dr Jonathan Sarfati, ...

    Now my claim is that Jono is not any sort of logician and the use of the Dr title in that sentence is misleading which at the very least should mention that Sarfati earned his doctorate in physical chemistry. The omission of chemist and the inclusion of logician is (I argue) and deliberate attempt to mislead.

    Regardless of whether you agree the claim was a deliberate attempt to mislead, I thought it would be interesting to see who thought it was fine to call oneself whatever we want to publish a book.

    A logician is a specialist in the field of either philosophy or mathematics*. I personally know a professor of logic and have met a few others and they are generally serious and very clever people who have devoted their careers and a good deal of their life to the study of logic, including the discovery of new contributions. They are not people who simply use logic any more than someone who uses a car can call themselves a mechanic.

    Anyway, that is what I think and now it's time to see what you think. Poll will be public.


    * edit: possibly also computer science and linguistics.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  2. #2
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    In the marketing for Jono's latest book the claim is made that Jono is a logician.

    Scientist, logician, chessmaster and author of the world’s biggest-selling creationist book, CMI’s Dr Jonathan Sarfati, ...

    Now my claim is that Jono is not any sort of logician and the use of the Dr title in that sentence is misleading which at the very least should mention that Sarfati earned his doctorate in physical chemistry. The omission of chemist and the inclusion of logician is (I argue) and deliberate attempt to mislead.
    Obviously, the Dr referred to the first in that list: scientist. It didn't refer to chessmaster or author either. If people want to find out the field of my doctorate, they merely need to read the About the Author page. Indeed, the OCD RW is giving far more publicity to the Logician angle than this page, so thanks
    “The history of the 20th century is full of examples of countries that set out to redistribute wealth and ended up redistributing poverty.”
    “There’s no point blaming the tragedies of socialism on the flaws or corruption of particular leaders. Any system which allows some people to exercise unbridled power over others is an open invitation to abuse, whether that system is called slavery or socialism or something else.”—Thomas Sowell

  3. #3
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    Obviously, the Dr referred to the first in that list: scientist.
    As many people would include logic as a branch of science that is not so. If you were interested in accuracy you should have said

    "Chemist, chessmaster and author..."

    You have a qualification as a chemist and chessmaster and rate as an author through publishing books. The claim of logician implies a level of skill with logic you do not possess.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    It didn't refer to chessmaster or author either.
    Of course not since chessmaster and authors don't require PhDs. However most professional logicians do possess PhDs and could be classified as scientists.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    If people want to find out the field of my doctorate, they merely need to read the About the Author page.
    The point is you should not misrepresent yourself at all so that people HAVE to do further research to discern fact from fiction in your marketing guff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    Indeed, the OCD RW is giving far more publicity to the Logician angle than this page, so thanks
    Any time you want me to point out embarrassing misrepresentations you have wilfully engaged in, just let me know.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  4. #4
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    You have a qualification as a chemist and chessmaster and rate as an author through publishing books. The claim of logician implies a level of skill with logic you do not possess.
    One can have skill without formal qualifications. Similarly, some chessplayers with FM skill (2300+ rating) don't bother to apply for the title, and others with the title have never had the skill.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    The point is you should not misrepresent yourself at all not should people HAVE to do further research
    Further research? Looking up "about the Author" with a mouse-click might count as onerous research for you, but probably not to most people.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    to discern fact from fiction in your marketing guff.
    I did not misrepresent myself, since someone else wrote that, and evidently used the lay understanding of the word "logician", as documented by Snail King:

    Logician:
    1. A practitioner of a system of logic.
    2. A student or scholar of logic.
    (ref: the American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

    Logician:
    a person who specializes in or is skilled at logic
    (ref: Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 6th Edition 2003)

    Logician:
    a person skilled at symbolic logic
    (ref: www.thefreedictionary.com/logician)

    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    Any time you want me to point out embarrassing misrepresentations you have wilfully engaged in, just let me know.
    Go for your life (maybe start with my new book, the subject of your recent flare-up in obsessive behaviour). When has anyone else here been obsessive enough to start a whole poll about a ChessChat member (at least one in good standing).

    I also don't see the marketing material for the Dawk pointing out that his doctorate was in animal behaviour, for example.
    Last edited by Capablanca-Fan; 13-03-2010 at 03:34 PM.
    “The history of the 20th century is full of examples of countries that set out to redistribute wealth and ended up redistributing poverty.”
    “There’s no point blaming the tragedies of socialism on the flaws or corruption of particular leaders. Any system which allows some people to exercise unbridled power over others is an open invitation to abuse, whether that system is called slavery or socialism or something else.”—Thomas Sowell

  5. #5
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    One can have skill without formal qualifications. Similarly, some chessplayers with FM skill (2300+ rating) don't bother to apply for the title, and others with the title have never had the skill.
    No but they can either substantiate the claim or not by results, ratings and other objective measures. In your case you have no qualification, no experience and no objective claim to the term logician whatsoever.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    Further research? Looking up "about the Author" with a mouse-click might count as onerous research for you, but probably not to most people.
    The point is the statement is misleading particularly in the way that sentence was framed on that page. Saying the qualification is outlined elsewhere does not give you license to misrepresent yourself.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    I did not misrepresent myself, since someone else wrote that, and evidently used the lay understanding of the word "logician", as documented by Snail King:

    Logician:
    1. A practitioner of a system of logic.
    2. A student or scholar of logic.
    (ref: the American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

    Logician:
    a person who specializes in or is skilled at logic
    (ref: Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 6th Edition 2003)

    Logician:
    a person skilled at symbolic logic
    (ref: www.thefreedictionary.com/logician)
    As I stated, when I answered Snail King's post of the same none of these definitions apply to you any more than the average person. In the marketing of the book you claim to be a logician and thus claim to have some particular knowledge or skill in logic which is total absent from your CV, either in qualification or experience. Claiming to be a logician is simply untrue.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    Go for your life (maybe start with my new book, the subject of your recent flare-up in obsessive behaviour). When has anyone else here been obsessive enough to start a whole poll about a ChessChat member (at least one in good standing).
    When you publish a book and make claims in the publicity of the same which are completely untrue you should expect some backlash from people who care about the truth and particularly (as I said) those from that or related disciplines.

    As a mathematician and someone interested in fact over fiction, I am outraged that you would make such a false representation. Clearly other posters also believe your claim should be retracted including a PhD student in philosophy.

    The purpose of the poll was to see what other people thought as I also care about that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    I also don't see the marketing material for the Dawk pointing out that his doctorate was in animal behaviour, for example.
    I'm neither writing or checking Dawkin's publicity but I haven't seen him claiming to be anything other than a zoologist.

    In any case, even if Dawkins had made misrepresentations in his publicity, it would not give you license for your present untruth.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  6. #6
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    As I stated, when I answered Snail King's post of the same none of these definitions apply to you any more than the average person.
    They do so. The average person would not be a student of logic or skilled in formal logic. In any case, even if it fits an "average person", it would not make it false for me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    In the marketing of the book you claim to be a logician and thus claim to have some particular knowledge or skill in logic which is total absent from your CV, either in qualification or experience.
    There's no pleasing atheopaths like you. Yes, it is omitted from my CV which lists only formal qualifications. For an informal description, it fits the dictionary definition.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    As a mathematician and someone interested in fact over fiction, I am outraged that you would make such a false representation. Clearly other posters also believe your claim should be retracted including a PhD student in philosophy.
    He might have some justification, but the description was never "formally qualified logician" or some such, and he is not a little biased anyway.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    The purpose of the poll was to see what other people thought as I also care about that.
    I don't. I don't care what an obsessive atheopath like you thinks, or what a schoolgirl like AzureBlue thinks (cf. A Childish Letter by Dr Thomas Sowell).
    Last edited by Capablanca-Fan; 13-03-2010 at 05:03 PM.
    “The history of the 20th century is full of examples of countries that set out to redistribute wealth and ended up redistributing poverty.”
    “There’s no point blaming the tragedies of socialism on the flaws or corruption of particular leaders. Any system which allows some people to exercise unbridled power over others is an open invitation to abuse, whether that system is called slavery or socialism or something else.”—Thomas Sowell

  7. #7
    CC Grandmaster Garrett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    A logician is a specialist in the field of either philosophy or mathematics*.
    So says you. Dictionary.com says nothing of the sort.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    * edit: possibly also computer science and linguistics.
    Now you are starting to sound unsure and indecisive. On a lighter side, I have a masters degree in IT so maybe I can start calling myself a logician.

  8. #8
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    They do so. The average person would not be a student of logic or skilled in formal logic. In any case, even if it fits an "average person", it would not make it false for me.
    Clearly if you claim to be a logician in the blurb of the book you are making some representation as to why this book should be taken seriously. Logician is totally out of place and a misrepresentation of who you are.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    There's no pleasing atheopaths like you. Yes, it is omitted from my CV which lists only formal qualifications. For an informal description, it fits the dictionary definition.
    No it doesn't and you have no objective evidence that your skill and understanding of logic is any more refined than anyone else's.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    He might have some justification, but the description was never "formally qualified logician" or some such, and he is not a little biased anyway.
    Anyone interested in the truth has justification to be outraged by such misleading statements. other posters on the board who don't regularly participate in religious debate give a good barometer of general public opinion and not just that of the rationalists vs the religious.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    I don't. I don't care what an obsessive atheopath like you thinks, or what a schoolgirl like AzureBlue.
    Looks like your fast and loose ways with the truth are only matched by your arrogance. I congratulate you!

    The truth is you are not interested in the opinion of anyone with a alternative point of view. If you were you would have seen YEC for the sham it is years ago. (c.f. tens of thousands of geologists can't all be wrong.)
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  9. #9
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garrett
    So says you. Dictionary.com says nothing of the sort.
    Dictionary.com is hardly a reliable source. But even so even that definition does not apply to Jono in any notable way.

    Further in the context of Jono's marketing statement he was listing logician up there with scientist and chessmaster both of which he is well justified in claiming.

    Quote Originally Posted by Garrett
    Now you are starting to sound unsure and indecisive.
    No just qualifying my statement with a wider view of logician. Traditionally logic was the realm of maths and phil, but computer science and linguistics are also related.

    Quote Originally Posted by Garrett
    On a lighter side, I have a masters degree in IT so maybe I can start calling myself a logician.
    You probably couldn't in any meaningful way but you would at least have a stronger claim than Jono since IT is at least related to computer science.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  10. #10
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    Whats wrong with you people. Attacking each other for no reason whatever.

    You all need to get a life and a purpose.

    Why dont you congratulate Jono for writing a book or keep quiet.

    ps I havnt read the book and probably wont as it sounds way to academic and scientific for me. I have no confidence in science as its mostly people twisting things to fit what they think. Chances are the big-bang theory will be supersided in the next 50 years for something else.

    ------------------------------------------------------

    I read in wiki on the Jono section

    Ezekiel 18:20, which prohibits executing a child for the crime of his/her father — this means that even the tragic cases of pregnancies due to incest or rape are no justification for killing the innocent child conceived."

    attributed to Jono

    Yet Joshua 7 has children ordered to be killed by God for the actions of a single man.

    24 Then Joshua, together with all Israel, took Achan son of Zerah, the silver, the robe, the gold wedge, his sons and daughters, his cattle, donkeys and sheep, his tent and all that he had, to the Valley of Achor. 25 Joshua said, "Why have you brought this trouble on us? The LORD will bring trouble on you today."
    Then all Israel stoned him, and after they had stoned the rest, they burned them. 26 Over Achan they heaped up a large pile of rocks, which remains to this day. Then the LORD turned from his fierce anger. Therefore that place has been called the Valley of Achor [i] ever since.
    Last edited by CameronD; 13-03-2010 at 08:16 PM.

  11. #11
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CameronD
    Whats wrong with you people. Attacking each other for no reason whatever.
    Are you saying misrepresentation should go unchallenged because it is unseemly to criticise? That sounds like a tyranny of silence.

    All I'm asking in this thread if Jono is a logician. People can either agree or disagree according to their judgement or sensibilities.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  12. #12
    CC Grandmaster Desmond's Avatar
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    I notice that THE voted for the rectraction option. I think, from memory, he knows a thing or two about logic.

    As for me I don't really have a strong opinion on the matter. If it's another "preaching to the converted" book I doubt it will have much effect on who reads it and what conclusions they draw.
    So what's your excuse? To run like the devil's chasing you.

    See you in another life, brotha.

  13. #13
    CC Grandmaster
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    my first and last post in this thread

    The whole thread looks stupid for the following reason:

    1. These sorts of attack looks like nothing but petty grievance. (that's why I am not going to debate in this thread).

    2. RW on quite a few occasions demonstrated gaping lack of logic (I won't quote to spare the embarrassment). While making mistakes is understandable and excusable (especially when they are acknowledged), attacking Jono on pretence he is not strong in logic is nothing but laughable.
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  14. #14
    CC FIDE Master Hobbes's Avatar
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    Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.

  15. #15
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    How about "amateur logician" or "logic buff"? I think a construction along those lines would have been fine (a la "amateur historian") but trying to claim to be a logician without any formal credentials, professional experience or indications of objective skill is stretching it a bit.
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