The Instigator
m93samman
Con (against)
Losing
7 Points
The Contender
Puck
Pro (for)
Winning
26 Points

This expression makes sense

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/9/2010 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 5,919 times Debate No: 13115
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (34)
Votes (7)

 

m93samman

Con

I have, for the longest time, hated the expression "same difference". It makes absolutely no sense, and I think it really shows that English is extremely strange. In case my opponent decides to take this debate but hasn't heard the expression used, here's an example:

Bob: I really don't want to read for the calculus exam..
Joe: You mean study? All it is is equations, you don't really read them.
Bob: Same difference.
Joe: THAT MAKES NO SENSE. Don't ever say that again.
Bob: Haha yea it does... This is what it means: ~~~

We are basically going to continue this conversation, except it is not required to talk in the context of a calculus exam. I will be Joe. My opponent is Bob. Good luck to my opponent.

By the way, this debate is just for fun. Have fun :)
Puck

Pro

Bob with a look of dull excitement whips out his iphone and tells you the following in a mildly forceful tone:

"Same difference is from a class of literary phrases termed oxymorons - whose purpose is to juxtapose two contradictory terms as one phrase. Popularised oxymorons, instead of appealing to the paradox are instead intended to create a lightly amusing turn of phrase using seemingly two opposing terms. You may have heard of "military intelligence" being touted as a joke - this is the precursor to forming two terms into a seemingly contradictory joke."

Bob takes a deep breath

"In the case of same difference the term same is used to denote no or equal- the phrase meaning is in essence, no difference, or, the two things distinguished (different) are not (same)."

Bob being a right smart ar** then shows the following links on his iphone.

[1] http://www.debate.org...
[2] http://www.etymonline.com...
[3] http://www.wordnik.com...

"Ooh I wonder if there is a calculus app I can download ... anyway you should probably study for English it seems, though it's the same difference to me whether you fail or pass."
Debate Round No. 1
m93samman

Con

Joe, unwilling to give in because Bob is acting incredibly stuck up, responds:

"Okay. That's fine. I realize that it is an oxymoron; the problem is that it makes a reference to something external that is absolutely unrefered to. I.e. when you said 'same difference' regarding studying and reading, what 'difference' is it the 'same' as? When taken directly, oxymorons can make some sort of internal sense. Military intelligence, for one, is not an oxymoron. The military takes on strategies that are more elaborate than you could ever think of."

Joe pulls up a link full of different kinds of strategies as an example. http://www.au.af.mil...

"Furthermore, you said 'the term same is used to denote no or equal'. Last time I checked, 'no' doesn't mean the same thing as 'equal'. I.e. 'equal difference' and 'no difference' don't mean the same thing. The numbers 5 and 1 have an equal difference with the numbers 8 and 4. BUT, the numbers 5 and 5 have no difference. Does that make sense, or am I thinking too far ahead of your comprehension? If so, fiddle with this a little bit- it'll get you up to par."

Joe presents a website to help Bob deal with his incompetence. http://www.internet4classrooms.com...

"By the way, I'm not taking any english classes this semester. I'm exempt because of my AP scores from high school. Thanks though."
Puck

Pro

Bob scratches his head and wonders if Joe would qualify for the armed forces under the aforementioned pun.

"To take your initial issue - the initial usage referred to you making a distinction between reading words and reading an equation. Both require the same skill of recognising sequential symbols. One we call language, the other mathematics, and in this case a string of mathematical symbols called an equation. In both instances one is reading symbols that require a prior concept base to interpret properly. For instance I cannot read S.Korean, a language comprised of symbols - to do so would require knowledge to do so."

Bob shows Joe some Korean text on his phone.

"The symbols of languages are no different than the symbols of mathematics or English in the sense that both are representations of concepts."

Bob pauses, takes a sip from his drink and continues.

"Your concern with the pun "military intelligence" is purely one of 'not getting it'. Whether the joke is accurate or not is *irrelevant* to the purpose and the usage of it i.e. that those in conversation using it wish to juxtapose two seemingly adverse terms for the purposes of a joke."

At this point Bob pauses to show Joe usage on his phone.

[4] http://www.lifeisajoke.com...
[5] http://www.quotationspage.com...

"The fact that you don't get the joke, Joe, is not indicative of the validity of its purpose, or the purpose of a oxymoron in general, nor any indication that the initial question can be unresolved. Your understanding of it Joe is thankfully not a requisite for the usage of same difference, or that it can be valid to do so."
Debate Round No. 2
m93samman

Con

Joe is beginning to feel apologetic that he even brought the subject up around Bob, knowing how retrogressive he tends to be in class.

"I'm sorry I brought this up. Let me try to be as clear as possible. First, the distinction between 'reading' words and symbols is not the point I"m trying to address. It is the same issue here: Whether I am in the process of 'working on' a problem or 'figuring out' a problem, I am still doing the same action. The issue of concern is 'difference' in the phrase you are trying to defend. The Korean text you show me doesn't really change my opinion on anything; I never showed you anything that requires prior knowledge to understand."

Joe reminds Bob that 'same difference' is in English, and the numbers he showed earlier as examples are also using the numerical symbols that are used in the English language. http://www.debate.org...

"You're beginning to get extremely far off topic, telling me that symbols of language and math and English all represent concepts. You continue to miss the point."

Joe shakes his head as he says "miss the point".

"My concern with the pun 'military intelligence' is not one of 'not getting it'. The accuracy of the oxymoron you introduced is exactly what I am targeting; if one does wish to juxtapose two 'seeming adverse terms' in jest, they should at least make grammatical sense OR sense in context. Again, notice how you get off topic- in the case of 'same difference', you weren't making a joke. Rather, you were trying to accurately describe how two given descriptions of a situation had the same meaning. NOW does it make any sense?"

Joe takes a sip from Bob's drink and remarks on his lack of good taste.

"Read from this website here. It says:"
Perceived oxymora
_______________
Oxymoron is sometimes used to simply describe a contradiction in terms. Often, it is used to describe expressions which are used earnestly without any implication of a paradox. When such expressions are termed oxymorons, the PURPOSE IS TO CRITICIZE ITS USE AND LABEL IT AS NONSENSICAL. http://www.articleworld.org...

"So, definitionally an oxymoron doesn't make sense. Moreover, you still are addressing oxymorons in general as a joke; meanwhile, I am addressing 'same difference specifically. You have failed to prove me wrong, so I guess it's time that I move on. Thanks for an interesting time, though."

Joe leaves the coffee house.

Joe returns and takes his backpack.

Joe leaves the coffee house.

Joe returns one more time to address Bob.

"Oh yea, and remember when I said 'the problem is that it makes a reference to something external that is absolutely unrefered to. I.e. when you said 'same difference' regarding studying and reading, what 'difference' is it the 'same' as? When taken directly, oxymorons can make some sort of internal sense. Military intelligence, for one, is not an oxymoron. The military takes on strategies that are more elaborate than you could ever think of.'? Well, you never addressed the issue of internal consistency regarding the specific oxymoron we were discussing."

Joe leaves the coffee house.
Puck

Pro

Bob whips out another handy app, quoting Joe as he talks.

"The issue of concern is 'difference' in the phrase you are trying to defend. The Korean text you show me doesn't really change my opinion on anything; I never showed you anything that requires prior knowledge to understand."

Bob replies: "As noted your opinion on agreement or not is irrelevant to the issue at hand. You wanted to know why 'same difference' was applicable and I explained it to you. You made a distinction between the reading of words and the reading of an equation (a difference) - since my position is that there is *no* difference then the acts are *equal* (see the opening round for that one, Joe) hence the call of 'same difference' which I already explained the meaning and usage of."

Bob quotes again "Joe reminds Bob that 'same difference' is in English, and the numbers he showed earlier as examples are also using the numerical symbols that are used in the English language."

And replies: The issue of 'same difference' being an English phrase is only relevant as to the fact you and I are speaking it to each other. Mathematical symbols are not English. Mathematical symbols is its own language. You or I may explain or translate what a symbol means in a separate language, which may be English. In any event an equation is not a word, but both require the reading of sequential symbols i.e. the same act i.e. no difference, hence same difference being used.

Bob continues to quote "The accuracy of the oxymoron you introduced is exactly what I am targeting; if one does wish to juxtapose two 'seeming adverse terms' in jest, they should at least make grammatical sense OR sense in context."

To which Bob replies: "The success or failure of a joke is indeed dependent upon the receiver getting it - that doesn't make the usage of it invalid if the receiver doesn't get it. The phrase 'military intelligence' as a juxtaposition intended for a joke is valid as the purpose of the joke is to deride the pairing. If the joke teller deems military intelligence to be an amusing adjoin of words as it appeals to the pun nature of a the paradox then it is indeed valid. The context is precisely the terms used, military and intelligence. Once again, that you don't get the joke doesn't stop it being a joke. Again none of this has anything to do with 'same difference' or a oxymoron in general.

The quoting continues "Again, notice how you get off topic- in the case of 'same difference', you weren't making a joke. Rather, you were trying to accurately describe how two given descriptions of a situation had the same meaning. NOW does it make any sense?"

Bob goes on: "Same difference does come under the classification of pun paradoxes. More precisely of the sarcastic form of which puns may take. Indeed if I was to type same difference it is more probable than not that I would include some form of emoticon such as this (Bob shows a :P on his phone). It appears your ability to detect intent is at issue here Joe, not my phrases."

Bob looks at Joes link and smiles. "Your link does not make your case as you hope, or rashly wish. As it notes, the primary purpose of using an oxymoron is for rhetoric effect, which is precisely what same difference was used for - in that instance pointing out your misuse of reading. Indeed I can see by your specifically shouted quotes that you don't even get the point made in your link. Perhaps you should read it again Joe, or I can point out the issue? Yes? Ok, let's see "describe expressions which are used *earnestly without any implication* of a *paradox* - that's not us is it Joe? I used the phrase same difference deliberately, as a deliberate oxymoron. So what about the shouting part you were excited about. Ah, "When such expressions are termed oxymorons" - you see Joe, the whole point of that little paragraph is to denote those who cry "oxymoron" when two phrases are put together when *initially* not intended to be a oxymoron. We know that's not our case here with same difference though it does bring to mind another recent discussion of one that would fit. Have you heard of military intelligence by any chance Joe?"

Bob being the guy that he is, puts aside the tainted drink and starts another with a smile.

"Shall we continue? Good."

Bob quotes some more "So, definitionally an oxymoron doesn't make sense."

Bob says, "The purpose of an oxymoron is to juxtapose two seemingly adverse phrases - not making sense would be an equivocation here as it's quite possible to obtain meaning from such phrases."

To quote some more "Moreover, you still are addressing oxymorons in general as a joke; meanwhile, I am addressing 'same difference specifically. "

"Ah Joe, what silly ideas you spout. See I've noted multiple times that same difference is an oxymoron, which is important to understand how and why they are used and what types there are. From that came the specific argument of what same difference means and how it is used. If you don't think I've explained same difference at all I suggest you go to this link.

[7] http://www.debate.org...

Bob handily keeps pulling up quotes. "You have failed to prove me wrong, so I guess it's time that I move on. Thanks for an interesting time, though."

"Joe, you are too brash. Perhaps you need to sit down, it has been a big day for you, what with all that reading. You never made a case besides the roughly paraphrased, "I don't get it" - which is not much of an argument at all."

"You know this app is quite amazing, look .."

"Oh yea, and remember when I said 'the problem is that it makes a reference to something external that is absolutely unrefered to. I.e. when you said 'same difference' regarding studying and reading, what 'difference' is it the 'same' as?"

Bob leans back. "Joe, I never referred to the difference being in the study, I referred to the lack of difference being within the act of reading a word and reading an equation. A difference you deemed there to be. As I've explained multiple times already, same difference applies to *your claim* that there was a *difference* between the two acts. By stating same difference, I am in effect saying there is no difference between the two, that the two are equal, or, that there is no difference."

"To quoth some more", Bob adds, "When taken directly, oxymorons can make some sort of internal sense. Military intelligence, for one, is not an oxymoron. The military takes on strategies that are more elaborate than you could ever think of.'? Well, you never addressed the issue of internal consistency regarding the specific oxymoron we were discussing."

Bob smiles again, "From a quoth to a quaff", and takes another gulp. "You still don't get it Joe. Even the link you just provided spelt it out for you." Bob adds hastily, " In the proverbial sense, of course. Wouldn't want you to wonder how the web page was spelling to you. As for the specific example, I think you'll find that website I just linked has 3 rounds total of addressing that specific claim of same difference making sense."
Debate Round No. 3
34 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by tvellalott 6 years ago
tvellalott
I'm not sure how I found this debate, but after reading it and the comments, I'd have to give it to Puck, regardless of the fact I agreed with the resolution before hand. If the resolution had been "The phrase 'same difference' is erronous." then your arguments would have been much more valid, though I'm sure the debate would have been significantly different.
Posted by Pandora9321 6 years ago
Pandora9321
This "debate" convulsed me.
just thought I'd say.
Posted by m93samman 6 years ago
m93samman
that isn't my argument. If you missed it, there's a debate tab on the left of the comments tab where you can read my arguments
Posted by belle 6 years ago
belle
labeling all arguments against you "opinions" and telling me to "open my mind" are pretty bad arguments too. got anything else? :P
Posted by m93samman 6 years ago
m93samman
I never said "i don't get it" anywhere in the round. And the "references" you made to other oxymorons like military intelligence doesn't make same difference any clearer.
Posted by Puck 6 years ago
Puck
The intent is not to convince you of anything, I thought that was clear by the multiple references to as such in the actual debate. The issue is your apparently linear singular system of definitions within English. Words take on multiple meanings depending on context, that's how English works and it applies adequately to 'same difference'. To make the point that 'same difference' is incoherent usage, one would have to disallow the actual usage of it, which would be patently useless. The issue appears to be how you defined the term as standard against the defining use of it as standard, and as such your lack of argument was blatantly clear as it consisted entirely of 'I don't get it, it shouldn't be' - of which is thoroughly underwhelming. But as you say, this is not going to go anywhere. ;)
Posted by m93samman 6 years ago
m93samman
Okay yoda, listen. For the last fvcking time, I've already explained that I'm challenging your shallow understanding of what I believe is an erroneously created phrase. If your not open to others' interpretations, stop talking. Clearly, it's like I'm trying to transmit light waves to a radio- you can't make use of it. So back off, and stop trying to make the point that I've been trying to challenge, because it's not getting you anywhere.
Posted by Puck 6 years ago
Puck
You may swear all you like, though an argument that does not make. That you appear to not understand the coherent usage of it is apparently no barrier to the rest of us who can.
Posted by m93samman 6 years ago
m93samman
that's your interpretation of it. I was challenging it. How the FVCK does that not make sense? To all who still disagree to the degree that belle and puck do, and to belle and puck, open up your fvckin minds to something besides what's already in them
Posted by Puck 6 years ago
Puck
Incorrect. As I explained in the debate, there are no two differences, or to be more precise the call of 'same difference' is to explicitly disavow the usage of two or more differences where none actually exist, not that the differences are the same. As such it is coherent.
7 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Vote Placed by S98-SAMMAN 6 years ago
S98-SAMMAN
m93sammanPuckTied
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Vote Placed by Cliff.Stamp 6 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
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tvellalott
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ethopia619
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belle
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