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Tigran V Petrosian vs Taras E Prokhorovich
Union of Metal Producers Coop - Moscow State Uni (1957), Moscow URS, Oct-04
Slav Defense: General (D10)  ·  1-0

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Dec-06-03  Andy White: <Those in the U.S.A. longing for the benefits and care of bigger Government should be aware and wary of the Soviet experience. Who was it that said "that Government which governs best is that which governs least," or that a "Government big enough to give you everything you need is big enought to take everything you've got?">

I'm uncertain as to why you felt it necessary to post all that (I'm glad economics wasn't your major btw), but you're making a big leap of logic to imply that the failure of communism in the USSR is an argument against all state ownership or benefits.

There are governments in existence, particularly in northern Europe, that have struck a happy medium. I don't know who it was who said "the government which governs best is the government which governs least", but if things were that simple I think people would have realised by now.

Some of the ideology behind communism is still incredibly valuable for people of all political viewpoints, although I agree that full-blown China/USSR-style communism was a pretty dismal failure.

As usual, compromise is the best solution. Just wanted to post that as a counterpoint to your strange outburst of propaganda. Normally I would not post about politics in a chess discussion.....

Dec-06-03  Benjamin Lau: Speaking of compromises, it's kind of funny, but did anyone realize that Britain is (in a way) a democratic socialist monarchy?
Dec-07-03  patzer2: <Andy White> <you're making a big leap of logic to imply that the failure of communism in the USSR is an argument against all state ownership or benefits> Pardon me Andy, but I think you're the one making the "big leap of logic" or engaging in the logical fallacy of "creating a strawman argument."

In logic a "strawman" is to create an argument that does not exist and attack it, or to misrepresent someone else's opinion so you can attack it. It was not my opinion that "the failure of communism in the USSR is an argument against all state ownership or benefits." That was your conclusion and not mine. I do believe we need Government for National Defense, Roads, Public Education, Law, Justice etc. So your statement is both false and a misrepresentation.

Another logical fallacy in your argument is in the use of an "adhominen argument" or personal attack to descredit me, as in your <strange outburst of propaganda> statement.

Dec-07-03  Andy White: I quite clearly used the word "imply". As much as you didn't explicitly state that point of view, it's very hard to see what else you were suggesting with the following:

<Those in the U.S.A. longing for the benefits and care of bigger Government should be aware and wary of the Soviet experience. Who was it that said "that Government which governs best is that which governs least," or that a "Government big enough to give you everything you need is big enought to take everything you've got?">

Do you understand my point? I see now that you do believe in a certain level of government control, but it was not what you _implied_ in your original post, and I think most other people who read that would have a similar interpretation. In other words, you misrepresented yourself.

<Another logical fallacy in your argument is in the use of an "adhominen argument" or personal attack to descredit me, as in your <strange outburst of propaganda> statement.>

Pull the other one mate! That wasn't part of the argument and it wasn't a personal attack (I know nothing about you and have no problem with you). That was my explanation for why I posted.

Dec-07-03  patzer2: The quote "that government is best which governs least" has often been attributed to Thomas Jefferson, but in actuality it was first used by Henry David Thoreau to introduce his essay on civil disobedience, which can be found at http://www.modern-mystic.net/doc/ci... Thoreau emphasized that this motto does not imply no Government, when he said "....But to speak practically and as a citizen, unlike those who call themselves no government men, I ask for, not at once no government, but at once a better government." Thomas Jeffferson also realized the dangers of too much Government when he wrote: "(W)e have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious. I believe it might be much simplified to the relief of those who maintain it."

(Letter to W. Ludlow, 1824). THOMAS JEFFERSON ON DEMOCRACY 161 (S. Padover Ed. 1953).

"...a wise and frugal government which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. (March 4, 1801 Conciliatory Address)."

THE POLITICAL WRITINGS OF THOMAS JEFFERSON 43 (Dumbauld Ed. 1955).

"Were we directed from Washington when to sow and when to reap, we should soon want bread." --Thomas Jefferson

"I own I am not a friend to a very energetic government. It is always oppressive." --Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Paine said "Beware the greedy hand of government, thrusting itself into every corner and crevice of industry."

Former President Ronald Reagan echoed the sentiments of Thoreau, Jefferson and Paine in his first inaugural address in 1981 when he said:

"It is not my intention to do away with government. It is, rather, to make it work--work with us, not over us; to stand by our side, not ride on our back. Government can and must provide opportunity, not smother it; foster productivity, not stifle it. It is no coincidence that our present troubles parallel and are proportionate to the intervention and intrusion in our lives that result from unnecessary and excessive growth of government..."

Former President Geraod Ford said "A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have." The quote can be found at http://www.bartleby.com/63/7/107.ht... a site which provides a free search engine for famous quotes.

Nobel Prize winning economist Milton Friedman, of the famous University of Chicago School of Economics, emphasized that it was impossible to have political freedom without a free market economy (an economy with minimal government interference) when he wrote in his 1962 Book on Capitalism and Freedom:

"Historical evidence speaks with a single voice on the relation between political freedom and a free market. I know of no example in time or place of a society that has been marked by a large measure of political freedom, and that has not also used something comparable to a free market to organize the bulk of economic activity."

So, how might this apply to Chess. Well for one thing note the strides that have been made in improving Chess skill and ability for both humans (e.g. more strong women masters and more super GMs) and computers, in increasing prizes for professional chess, and in popularizing and marketing chess to a wider audience since the Eastern European and former Soviet Masters were able to fully compete for prizes in a free market and keep most of their earnings. For example, despite his detractors, the Chess capitalism of Gary Kasparov has expanded popular interest in Chess, and helped more private chess enterprise to emerge.

Dec-07-03  patzer2: <Andy White> <Do you understand my point? I see now that you do believe in a certain level of government control, but it was not what you _implied_ in your original post, and I think most other people who read that would have a similar> No I don't understand. I do understand that you jumped to a conclusion based on insufficient evidence, which is the fallacy in logic of "drawing a hasty conclusion."

Because I believe "some government" (i.e. bigger government or communist government) is bad, does not infer or imply that I think "all government" is bad. This false leap in logic from the part (some) to the whole (all), is also known as the "fallacy of composition."

Nor do I understand how the statement
<I'm glad economics wasn't your major btw> is not an adhominen (personal) attack. I hope you will not be disappointed to know I did post graduate work in Economics at Florida State and the University of Texas at Arlington toward my Master's degree and taught Economics in the University of California and California State University systems.

You might find the free online logic course at http://www2.sjsu.edu/depts/itl/ from San Jose State University useful.

Dec-07-03  Benjamin Lau: <The quote "that government is best which governs least" has often been attributed to Thomas Jefferson, but in actuality it was first used by Henry David Thoreau to introduce his essay on civil disobedience, which can be found at http://www.modern-mystic.net/doc/ci... Thoreau emphasized that this motto does not imply no Government, when he said "....But to speak practically and as a citizen, unlike those who call themselves no government men, I ask for, not at once no government, but at once a better government." >

Patzer2, it doesn't sound that way. I don't have the time to search for my copy of Thoreau's "Civil Disobedience" and his other works to find and read the quote in context, but it seems like he DOES advocate the complete elimination of government, just *not immediately*. (i.e. like how there were many abolitionists who did not think it was practical to immediately free the slaves, but to do it gradually.) I do not see how you could have possibly drawn that he doesn't believe in "no government," since he says "not at once." He seems to believe that "no government" should be the end deal, just not immediately. Perhaps the meaning is different when read in context, but you did not provide context when you first put the quote down (nor in your last post either.) Thus, in defense of Andy White, your quote does seem a bit extreme for your view, which you claim is actually more moderate ("some government" should exist.) Maybe you don't think so, but I agree that you misrepresented yourself.

<since the Eastern European and former Soviet Masters were able to fully compete for prizes in a free market and keep most of their earnings.>

I don't know for certain, but I think that most of the GMs under USSR style communism were allowed to keep their winnings. At the very least, Karpov was allowed to.

Dec-07-03  Benjamin Lau: <Because I believe "some government" (i.e. bigger government or communist government) is bad, does not infer or imply that I think "all government" is bad. This false leap in logic from the part (some) to the whole (all), is also known as the "fallacy of composition." >

Patzer2, perhaps you need to retake that online logic course you recommended earlier. As you would have said yourself:

"In logic a "strawman" is to create an argument that does not exist and attack it, or to misrepresent someone else's opinion so you can attack it. Your statement is both false and a misrepresentation."

Andy never said that just because you believe "some government" is bad, does it imply that you believe that "all government" is bad. Initially, he believed that you were attacking all state ownership and benefits, in which case it would not be too far a stretch to argue you believed "all government" was bad. Later, you clarified your opinion, and so he retracted his earlier statement that you believed "all government" was bad. That you attack an opinion he retracted earlier and compare it to what you "really think" after the fact is just plain misrepresentation, pure and simple. You're being illogical.

Dec-07-03  patzer2: <Andy White> Please accept my apology for the tone of my last reply to your posts here. I see now how you might have taken the paraphrased quote by Henry David Thoreau "that government is best which governs least" along with my description of the horrific economic and human conditions under Soviet communism to imply I might believe in no "state ownership of benefits" (i.e. no government control).

And as <Benjamin Lau> rightly points out, I need not have belabored the point or accused you of being illogical when you were merely trying to explain why you misunderstood my position.

Also, I understand you were not making a personal attack, but merely trying to express an opinion -- and I should have taken it as such. Perhaps I was guilty of the "fallacy of ambiguity" by not making my position clear in my first "off topic" post (although a little diversion from Chess at times can be fun).

Most Americans would likely agree we need some degree of government control, protection of individual freedom and a vibrant free economy. The question in American politics is mostly a question of degree as to how much government control of our economy and our lives we are willing to accomodate.

I personally agree with much of the sentiment expressed in the quotes below:

"The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire."

-Robert A. Heinlein

"Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest in you."

-Pericles (430 B.C.)

"If you have been voting for politicians who promise to give you goodies at someone else’s expense, then you have no right to complain when they take your money and give it to someone else, including themselves."

-Thomas Sowell (1992)

"One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation."

-Thomas B. Reed (1886)

"The best government is the one that charges you the least blackmail for leaving you alone."

-Thomas Rudman-Brown

"When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators."

-P.J. O’Rourke

"The more corrupt the state, the more it legislates."

-Tacitus

"The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule."

-H.L. Mencken

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies."

-C. S. Lewis

"A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government."

-Thomas Jefferson

"I believe that every individual is naturally entitled to do as he pleases with himself and the fruits of his labor, so far as it in no way interferes with any other men’s rights."

-Abraham Lincoln

Dec-07-03  Benjamin Lau: Patzer2, you are very erudite (not an insult, I really mean it). What book do you recommend for someone who doesn't have an interest in majoring/minoring in economics, but would really like to get a practical grasp of the subject for the business matter and the occasional philosophical discussion?
Dec-07-03  patzer2: <Benjamin Lau> Sorry the link I put in failed to bring up Henry David Thoreau's Essay on Civil Disobedience, which begins with the quote "That government is best which governs least."

You were correct that in the essay Thoreau does actually say he favors no government in his first paragraph of the essay, as quoted below:

"Carried out, it finally amounts to this, which also I believe--"That government is best which governs not at all"; and when men are prepared for it, that will be the kind of government which they will have."

However, in paragraph three of the essay, which can be found at

sunsite.berkeley.edu/Literature/Thoreau/CivilDisobedience.html,

he goes on to clearly state:

"But, to speak practically and as a citizen, unlike those who call themselves no-government men, I ask for, not at once no government, but at once a better government."

So, does Thoreau contradict himself by calling for "no government" and "some" (i.e. better) government" in the same essay?

Even though in deductive logic, by Aristotle's Square of Opposition, "some" is the contradicotry of "none," I don't see the two statements as a contradiction by Thoreau. I think what Thoreau was suggesting is that if a society could achieve a level of education and individual preparation among its citizenry, then theoretically such a society could exist without government. However, in the interim, until the society is ready for such a utopian state of affairs, then a "better government" which is "that government which governs least is best."

Where I would disagree with Thoreau is in his assumption that a modern society could ever reach a state of education, preparation and self improvement of its citizers where "no government" would ever be possible. However, interestingly, some have suggested that Thomas Jefferson believed many American Indican Trives had already achieved that ideal state of affairs (i.e. no government) in his time.

Also thanks for pointing out my overreaction to the concern and misunderstanding of my "off topic." If you misunderstood also, then I figured I failed to clearly communicate in that post and I apologize for the confusion.

Dec-07-03  Benjamin Lau: My interpretation of Thoreau is about the same as yours. Thoreau was a pragmatic idealist (a funny oxymoron) in that he wanted no government, but he was realistic enough to know that it wouldn't happen over night.

I also agree with you that such a society is unlikely. If we look at it from an economic perspective, after the amount of freedom reaches a certain point, it stops paying dividends and actually starts to hurt the economy as laws go unenforced and various kind of chaos like murder hurt productivity.

Jefferson's perspective is kind of funny since we now know that the Indians would later get brushed off their land by the colonial settlers.

But anyway, what book on economics would you recommend (as I asked in my previous post, which somehow you overlooked)?

Dec-07-03  Benjamin Lau: <So, does Thoreau contradict himself by calling for "no government" and "some" (i.e. better) government" in the same essay?>

I thought we already figured this out earlier?

(He seems to believe that "no government" should be the end deal, just not immediately. )

Dec-08-03  shadowmaster: Wow, I'm impressed by the level of discussion here.
Dec-08-03  patzer2: <Benjamin Lau> I know you were looking for a layman's guide to Economics. However, it's kind of like asking for an easy guide to analytic geometry, political science, psychology, finance and accounting combined. Unfortunately, the "dismal science" of Economics is not so simple as the politicians running for President would have us believe (e.g. John Dean's ridiculous assertion that tax cuts and the federal budget deficit are the cause of unemployment).

I really think a College course in Economics is the best way to learn the subject, using classroom discussion and interaction between students and a good instructor. However, if one is really interested in learning the subject outside of the classroom, then I would suggest going to a Public Library and checking out the college textbook "Economics," by Campbell R. McConnel and Stanley L.Bruce.

McConnel's text is long (over 800 pages), but is broken up into 19 chapters and if you take your time and work through the examples and exercises, you can pick up the material without the benefit of an instructor. Reviews and a description of the table of contents can be found at Amazon.Com.

McConnel has had the number one selling college Economics textbook for much of the past 40 years, and it has only gotten better over time. When I was in graduate school taking Macro Economics and quoted from it in a class for a definition, my Economics Professors laughed and ridiculed my use of McConnel's textbook, referred to it as a "High School level" book because of its simplicity and objectivity in explaining difficult concepts. Yet, for the layman wanting to learn on his or her own, I think that comment is in reality an excellent recommendation. And I found it useful in reviewing foundation concepts for more difficult advanced courses in MicroEconomics, MacroEconomics and Money and Banking.

Like most college textbooks, you may need to take out a second mortgage to afford the price ($130 plus) for a new one. Fortunately, there are so many old but relatively recent editions available that you can find one in most any public Library, and plenty of fairly recent editions can be bought used at a very reasonable price.

If you would like to read perhaps the first text ever written on Economics by Adam Smith, (1723-1790), Professor of Logic, University of Glascow, Scotland, then I invite you to read the "Wealth of Nations" online at http://www.bibliomania.com.html Smith is considered the "founding father of Economics," and this book is great for some historical insights on the origin of the study of both Micro Economics and Macro Economics. His explanation of the principal of "division of labor" using the example of manufacturing pins is a classic example used in college business and economics classrooms even today.

In addition to going through the MicroEconomics portion of the McConnel text you might wish to augment your reading with Capitalism and Freedom by Milton Freidman, Basic Economics by Thomas Sowell, New Ideas from Dead Economists by Todd Bucholtz and Martin Feldstein, Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlett and Naked Economics by Charles Wheelan. These books can be bought for a very reasonable price through Amazon.Com.

Dec-08-03  JustAFish: <patzer2> I just thought I'd point out that "Appeal to Authority"- that is the use of citiations of some noted person, organization or deity to prove a point- is also considered a logical fallacy. If you want to get nit-picky about it. :-)
Dec-08-03
Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: Is this the chess forum or the Mensa forum?
Dec-08-03
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: <technical draw> I think I'll try the Denser Forum. However, I find the previous postings both fascinating and enlightening. Thanks guys.
Dec-08-03
Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: <patzer2>. That's OK friend. You just go ahead. I got three college credits just for reading through this thread!
Dec-08-03  patzer2: <JustAFish> <Appeal to Authority"- that is the use of citiations of some noted person, organization or deity to prove a point- is also considered a logical fallacy> You are confusing "appeal to authority" with "False Appeal to Authority."

Valid appeal to a authority does not constitute a fallacy and is in fact strong evidence to support an assertion or inductive argument. When lawyers argue cases and cite legal precedents from other cases they are using legitimate appeal to authority. When expert witnesses testify in court to support one side in a trial or legal dispute that is a legitimate appeal to authority. Appeal to Authority is actually a good source of evidence in inductive logic. When a University indicates that it has been accredited by an authorized association that is a legitimate appeal to authority. When magazine articles cite the opinions of the consensus of experts to support a statement of fact, the that is a legitimate appeal to authority.

The logical fallacy of "False Appeal to Authority" occurs only when one or all of the following conditions are met:

1. The authority cited is not a genuine expert in the field (e.g. A movie star or singer advertises on TV telling you to buy a certain headache remedy).

2. There is no concensus (or wide disagreement) among the experts on the point in question (e.g. The Oklahoma footbal coach cites only the BCS poll to indicate the University of Okalahoma should be the undisputed number one NCAA Division I U.S.A. College Football Team if it Beats LSU in the Sugar Bowl, when in fact the majority of sports writers and coaches indicate the University of Southern California is number one in the AP and ESPN polls).

3. You can verify the claim as sound (true and valid) without appeal to authority (e.g. when the experts said the World was flat and Columbus would sail off the edge of the world he proved the "experts" wrong.)

Since, I made a sound argument using valid "appeal to authority," and not a "false appeal to authority," there is no fallacy.

<technical draw> Sorry for the diversion from Chess. The connection for me in this game was in observing the horrific economic and political conditions that existed in the USSR when this game was played with Petrosian having to carry his "union card" under the banner of Soviet communism, forced to support a Government that had perpetrated perhaps the worst abuses of human rights and the greatest denials of personal liberty and suppresion of economic freedom in human history.

P.S. Also sorry if our comments got transposed, as I had to repost. We are both old enough to remember the fear of nuclear war, the arms race and the "cold war." Many, including many of my most recent students have no inkling or understanding of the political and economic conditions that led to this terrible situation. As philosopher and historian George Santayana warned “Those who ignore the past are doomed to repeat it.” And the failure of the biggest Socialist experiment in big government control in human history is a lesson that I personally do not want the citizens of my country to ever forget -- and hopefully never repeat that mistake in socialism and too much big government control.

Dec-08-03
Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: <patzer2> Yes I remember the cold war, and the air raid drills, and the bomb shelters. I also remember Selma and Kent State. Nuff said.
Dec-09-03  ughaibu: What happens if I appeal to Kurt Goedell? or at the other extreme, Marnoff Mirlony?
Dec-09-03  Catfriend: Yes! Appeal to Kurt Goedell! He'd think u'r trying to poison him, then the prof. would find 17.6 logical internal contradictions.. imagine the rest
Dec-09-03  Andy White: <Valid appeal to a authority does not constitute a fallacy and is in fact strong evidence to support an assertion or inductive argument.>

To be fair, though, one could quite easily support almost any political or economic viewpoint with the opinions of someone considered to be an expert :) It's not quite the same as the "proveable sciences".

<Nor do I understand how the statement <I'm glad economics wasn't your major btw> is not an adhominen (personal) attack.>

Well, yes it was ad hominem (sorry, hehe) but that doesn't constitute a logical fallacy unless it is used as part of the argument.

Being a frequent poster on discussion forums, I have come across Logical Fallacy pages before. It isn't uncommon to see the odd person throwing out the fancy expressions (mostly "straw man"), but really these are confusing words for concepts that are rather more intuitive.

Seems to me that all this logical fallacy talk is pretty pretentious. If someone slags you off as part of their argument, you can crush them with plain English without having to resort to the ad hominem logic babble.

You obviously know your @#$%, but I'm glad I called your bluff, because you have developed your points so much more clearly now. The first post came across as quite dogmatic to me, and I doubt I was the only one.

Oh well, I learnt a few things, so did a few others it seems. Hehe :D

Dec-09-03  Nova1990: <Catfriend> That’s a low blow. Sure, Godel suffered from depression and paranoia, but his contributions to mathematics and logic are gigantic. And in the depths of his mental illness, Godel never advocated mass murder like you-know-who does.
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