Pooh’s Think

… with comments

Evidence & Embodied Persuasion

Wow, Wilson quotes from someone I like, a very rare thing:

“Never write what you dare not sign. An anonymous letter-writer is a sort of assassin, who wears a mask, and stabs in the dark. Such a man is a fiend with a pen. If discovered, the wretch will be steeped in the blackest infamy.” Charles Spurgeon

This post will of course provoke Kirkers to declare that I am coming back to the light or waffling (in fact “The Princess” has already libeled me as doing just this over at Vision 2020). But this will be, when it does in fact occur, a silly suggestion. We have here a quote from Charles Spurgeon clearly and directly dealing with a contemporary event. How often does that happen over at Ba and MoBa? I particularly like how far removed Spurgeon is from these blog wars and American Christianity. And yet, what he writes applies directly; the internet is a medium that is in some ways little different than letter writing. This does not mean that I condone Wilson’s dishonest and inconsistent refusal to answer concerns or arguments unless the person is identifiable; Wilson has always needed identity so that he can attack the person and not the argument or evidence. And there are clearly times when anonymity might be appropriate given this kind of tyrannical dealing with criticism. However, this quote from Spurgeon lines up well with my concern about the connection between evidence given and the personal narrative behind its giving. This is a deep matter, but one more shallow way to consider this is through the idea of a person’s total body of evidence. The ideal rational observer, S, comes to B1 given how well grounded it is in all S’s beliefs: let’s say B2 to B5200. When S is listening to an act of persuasion then, we could take facts about the person offering the evidence as comprising S’s beliefs B2 through, say, B50. Facts about the persuader will always have some role to play in S’s total body of evidence — sometimes a large role, sometimes a very minor role. This is like I said a thin approach to what is likely a deep and complex reality. And all this becomes particularly important when internet assassins are manipulating the crowd with sophistry, and one person, or a handful, is posting under many different aliases.

By the way, I wanted to remind my readers that almost all the posts here without names have identities confirmed and approved by me off-line. I have received some emails with allegations against Doug Wilson, but when I am not certain of their credibility as attached to real people I can locate I will not post them here. I have also been preparing to request that the folks at Still Fed Up give their identity. They have gone from argumentative reply to eye witness testimony, and so I think it might be appropriate that they give us their identities and a little bit about their own personal narratives.


December 8, 2006 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. “When I am not certain of their credibility as attached to real people I can locate I will not post them here.”

    Michael, that is a load of crap. What about Frank Vance?

    Comment by DJ | December 9, 2006 | Reply

  2. Hmmm. Good point!

    Maybe I should activate my comment section…. Well, still have to wait till January.

    Michael Metzler

    Comment by Michael Metzler | December 9, 2006 | Reply

  3. That’s got nothing to do with it. You didn’t answer my question. Why the double standard?

    Comment by DJ | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  4. Michael,

    As you begin to explore the affiliations, whereabouts, identities and inconsistencies of the group calling themselves “Ministry Watchman” you will find unending conflicts and distortions.

    Their real names are kept secret, at all costs, because there will be instantaneous invalidation when they are revealed. Witness the saga of the Epsteins (aka Charles Fisher, Thomas Baxter). The same fate awaits the others involved at MW.

    Turn your attention to Frank Vance if you want to get your next shocker.

    The reformed world needs accountability and mutual respect across all it’s fraternal lines (as you rightly contend over at your site) but this group offers no insights or safeguards to anyone, not even themselves.

    The agenda is essentially no different than what you have proposed in your satirical Montana Cave Theory. What you state in jest, they have adopted as a vision statement.

    WG 2006

    Comment by WatchmanGate | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  5. This is strange…considering how many reformers wrote under psuedonyms. And, for good reason, I might add.

    Comment by Martin ascoll | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  6. Has anyone noticed when reading Pooh’s Think or any of his posts on other blogs how he is always accusing people of ‘viscious’ attacks, ‘smear campaigns’ against him, etc., when they question him on the truthfulness of his writing or when pointing out his double standard?

    Over reacting is not a great way to gain credibility. I am starting to think Metzler loves the drama.

    Comment by Anonymous for a reason | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  7. Martin,

    No reformers wrote under pseudonyms for the purpose of libel and slander. You are woefully mistaken if you think the testimony and actions of the vagrants at Ministry Watchman equal those of departed worthies who fought to give us freedom of religion.

    WG 2006

    Comment by WatchmanGate | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  8. Anonymous for a reason,

    Ministry Watchman is not in any position to question Metzler’s truthfulness about anything. The lies and fabrications at their site are so numerous that shutting down would be the most honorable thing they could do now.

    They are a big joke in the blogworld because of their National Inquirer approach. They are prolonging their own shame with every post.

    Steve A

    Comment by Steve A | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  9. Quote: “….departed worthies who fought to give us freedom of religion.”

    You call a state church freedom of religion? Tell that to the Anabaptists they murdered for refusing to join their ‘state church’ or have their babies baptized. You reformers love to rewrite history.

    And yes, Some wrote under psuedonyms to prevent their own necks being cut by the Catholics. They did it to prevent martyrdom.

    Comment by Martin | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  10. Martin,

    Thanks for showing your true colors.

    I didn’t say anything about a state church. The reformers liberated you from that idea. You might want to decide which misguided notion you’re coming onto these blogs to defend and stick with it.

    Ministry Watchman has some diluted defenders indeed.

    Steve A

    Comment by Steve A | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  11. You don’t have to say anything about a state church. Your reformed fathers did that for you. Tell me, why did Martin Luther agree to a ‘state church’ with forced attendance or get a visit for the magistrate? Why did he write that he would like to someday see a church of ‘true believers’ along side the state church?

    The reformers did not liberate me from that idea. They were persecuting Anabaptists for refusing to be a part of the state church all over Protestant Europe.

    The lack of education is why so many of you follow men instead of Christ.

    Comment by Martin | December 10, 2006 | Reply

  12. …hey, wait a minute guys, you are supposed to be attacking me. Martin Luther? Shoot. I just love the attention and it is getting away from me….

    And no Anonymous for a reason; you are really anonymous for a reason aren’t you? This statemetnt about when and who I alleged has participated in “vicious atacks” now only inlcudes Doug Wilson and his more vicious apologist and Ministry Watchman. But I take this as a dishonest remark anyways, if you have indeed a good knowledge of the Wood and my relationship to Ministry Watchman. The Watchman did indeed viciously attack me as soon as I posted criticism about their methodology. It is a startling claim, but matched by startling facts. But I’m glad because it was a fast way of showing their true colors, second only to the decision to post this story about Phillips. Of course, I think you probably know this in the first place….feel free to make a post to the Wood! send it to metzler@moscow.com

    I have been criticized and maligned by many people circling the World of Doug Wilson, but in the past I rarely responded by alleging “vicious attacks,” although I’ve lost my patience at longsuffering discussion and debate now that it has been an entire year and only a decrease in the rationality factor. Anyhow, vicious attacks are vicious attacks, and I reserve my right to call them what they are every now and then. But thanks for the comments; I’ll try to make a point not to over use such phrases.

    Good night.
    The non-photocopied Pooh Bear

    Comment by Michael Metzler | December 11, 2006 | Reply

  13. And no, I don’t plan on showing up here regularly to chat; when I have time to do this fun chat stuff on a regular basis, I’ll open comments in the Wood of color and sound. So have at it!…

    Michael Metzler

    Comment by Michael Metzler | December 11, 2006 | Reply

  14. Metzler, who’s to say that you won’t moderate comments? How will we know?

    Though I don’t know that we can say that this site isn’t moderated either …

    Comment by DJ | December 12, 2006 | Reply

  15. You try to find credible testimony to the fact that their comments were unjustly censured. This is my proof against the allegation from Watchman: find one person. I’ve got two witnesses already regarding the Watchman’s foul play.

    Comment by Michael Metzler | December 13, 2006 | Reply

  16. >

    So what are you waiting for?

    Comment by Just curious | December 15, 2006 | Reply

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