Re: "Cloning Breakthrough" not one

From: Mark Walker (
Date: Tue Nov 27 2001 - 16:00:10 MST

----- Original Message -----
From: "Lee Daniel Crocker" <>

> >> At the very least I must say that the evidence your average medical
> >> ethicist is significantly more virtuous than I am is somewhat less
> >> than compelling.
> > An ad hominem for all seasons.;)
> Attacking a _profession_ is fair game, because people choose their
> professions, and are therefore rightly judged by those choices.
> A medical ethicist is someone who has willfully chosen as a profession
> to increase death and suffering in the world.

Generally an ad hominen argument is considered to be an illegitimate form of
argument because it fails to provide the right sort of evidential relation
between premise(s) and conclusion. John claimed the following:
 " I have never, absolutely never, heard a medical ethicist say anything
that could
not be put in one of 2 categories:
A) Wrong
B) Bloody obvious."

Let us suppose that John's claim about their level of virtue is correct. How
does this provide evidential support for believing that everything they say
can be put into one of either two categories? Suppose it turns out that both
Aristotle and Kant were a couple of dog-kicking baby-punching immoral pricks
in practice. Would this in itself constitute a refutation of their
theoretical writings on ethics?

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