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When is Hitchens' Razor Ever Applicable?

CJKAllstar
Posts: 408
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4/16/2014 2:22:01 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
"What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence."

This is Hitchens' Razor, but is it ever justifiable, applicable to any situation or useful? Simply shrugging off a fact because there is no evidence presented seems like a get-out-of-jail card to me, and an easy way out. So would you ever use it? If so, when? If not, why? I really am interested in a discussion about it.
"Political language... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind." - George Orwell
philochristos
Posts: 2,614
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4/16/2014 3:15:35 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I would never use it because there are some things that require evidence or demonstration to warrant belief, and there are other things that do not require evidence or demonstration to warrant belief.

And as Aristotle said, "Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education."
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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4/16/2014 3:18:15 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I would revise Hitchens razor to:

"What which is asserted without reason, can be dismissed without reason"

However, if you dismiss an assertion BECAUSE it is without reason, then you have just dismissed it for a reason, which means, you aren't really dismissing it without reason lol If that makes any sense.
philochristos
Posts: 2,614
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4/16/2014 3:20:49 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 2:22:01 PM, CJKAllstar wrote:
"What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence."

I wonder if anybody ever challenged Hitchens to give evidence for this assertion and if so what he said. Does anybody know?
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle