Patio11 on Colorable Arguments

This thread uses crypto as an example but the issues are relevant to lots of other things including the CritRat harassment – they have not given colorable arguments about their innocence or any of it.

Colorable argument = plausible argument. I knew that offhand but also web searched it and it apparently comes from the legal profession. Roughly, a colorable argument is one the judge won’t get mad at you for making – it’s reasonable enough and has a chance of being right, so it isn’t a waste of time. It’s the minimum bar for that. If your argument is worse than that, you could annoy the judge or worse, and it’s going to hurt your case.

I agree with patio11 about crypto people providing a lack of colorable arguments.

I think that’s a common problem with many things, including especially most bad things.

Colorable or plausible arguments are a concept similar to trying to have some minimum standards for objectively claiming you won a debate. Which I wrote about: Curiosity – Claiming You Objectively Won A Debate

To make any kind of reasonable claim to have won a debate, you need to write down an argument, and say “ok i think that argument won that debate” and point at it. And the argument needs to at least be plausible/colorable. And on top of that you need to say why you think that it was conclusive and ends the debate (which is a higher bar than just having made a reasonable argument). You need a colorable argument for the the issue and also a colorable argument for why the first one was debate-winning. To objectively claim you won a debate, you need two arguments minimum, and you need to specifically write both down and clearly identify what they are (not say “i argued this above, mixed in btwn 7 posts”. be specific. quote where you already argued it or write it down again in a self-contained way).

what i liked about patio11’s thread was giving an example of what a colorable argument looks like. they aren’t that hard. there are some simple, basic standards crypto ppl could meet to have a colorable argument.

patio wrote:

e.g. If you think stablecoins are the future of international remittances, presumably you have some high quality thoughts on a) the current state of international remittances in some corridor or user group of interest and b) can map 1+ of those things to an improvement.

and then gave a specific example too. i like the type/format/category/structure of argument kinda info. you should have some thoughts on some issues that you can colorable claim are high quality. similarly if you’re going to reject Objectivism, you should have some thoughts on e.g. second-handedness, that you claim are high quality, and that you can make some colorable arguments about (and that you or someone else already did write down some colorable arguments about that you’ve already read and can link/cite).

2 Likes