Here I ask a question about the geneology which tries to understand why I should accept the argument style. The question is about nietzsche's "aphoristic" style, which Cody Gray has said "would be a very nice question".

I don't understand the "would be". This is my question--- how am I supposed to read a non-acadmic argument with supposed academic conclusions? I have no idea, and I got some responses about various philosopher's grappling with nietzsche's style. But I didn't get a satisfactory answer because the question was closed.

I am annoyed that questions which are definite are closed--- I asked about a specific argument in nietzsche, and I got one answer and one attempted answer before the close, and the close was by a person who has expressed hostility towards my questions before.

I will ask that it be reopened--- there is nothing wrong or vague about this question, and nothing offensive in the body.

  • 1
    This is exactly what I meant here. There's nothing wrong with your question if this is a Philosophy board, and getting it closed like that doesn't make sense. If the SE model doesn't allow discussion, then the SE model isn't adequate for Philosophy and the narrower field to which the board is open should be made clear for users. The should and shouldn't do questions in the FAQ contradicts itself.
    – user1746
    Apr 22 '12 at 18:53
  • I could see closing the question because Nietzsche is not doing philosophy here (seems more like pop psychology to me), and therefore the question is outside the scope of the forum. But that's about the only reason. The question is certainly not friendly towards Nietzsche, but last I checked the FAQ, friendliness towards (the works of) famous philosophers was not a requirement.
    – Rex Kerr
    Apr 22 '12 at 19:41
  • @RexKerr: Where is nietzsche doing philosophy? I haven't found a single instance.
    – Ron Maimon
    Apr 22 '12 at 22:44
  • My concern with this question is that the primary question you are asking ("I am really looking for a single example of a coherent argument anywhere in any of nietzsche's works") is not a good fit for the site, and you seem to know this and try to cover it up by asking a question with a more "definite" answer at the end (by asking about buying an selling, even the question title is different than the primary concern indicates). If I were to ask a question "Give me one reasonable argument from Plato" that would not really be the greatest question for this site. This question is no different.
    – stoicfury
    Apr 24 '12 at 3:18
  • @stoicfury that's OK but who are you to decide what is and isn't a good fit for the site? i kinda feel like the people closing questions are just the biggest control freaks; which isn't against the rules exactly but it will make you an unhelpful control freak
    – user6917
    Mar 1 '15 at 3:04
  • I am a Moderator Pro Tempore elected by the Admins to help reach this site's goals and maintain StackExchange's vision for their websites. I'm sorry you think I'm an "unhelpful control freak"; I am just a regular guy trying to help a site I enjoy flourish and become a place for millions to enjoy. If you have concerns about the closing of a specific question, you can open your own META post about it and we'll take a look. If you have problems specifically with me, you can email team@stackexchange.com with your concerns.
    – stoicfury
    Mar 2 '15 at 21:09

First, a big thanks to the ♦ folks. I feel your pain. I wouldn't want to be doing your job… This is getting tiresome. It's like being on extended, continuous emergency duty.

Also, I don't agree with the OP's adduced reasons for reopening the question, namely that

there is nothing wrong or vague about this question, and nothing offensive in the body.

Having said that, I voted to reopen the question because

  • the unfriendly tone is used towards the philosopher's work under discussion and - for once - not towards other users on Philo.SE (which in my view is the main problem with the OP's disruptive behaviour). As Rex Kerr puts it "last I checked the FAQ, friendliness towards (the works of) famous philosophers was not a requirement."

  • the specific questions can be answered directly. They involve empirical/historical/anthropological matters. Even if they involve more expertise than just philosophical knowledge, a lot of questions here involve more than just strict philosophical knowledge (think about the many questions about formal and mathematical logic.)

  • the general point of the OP's question can be answered indirectly. (That would be my option.) As pointed out implicitly in the first answer, the OP employs a high evaluation standard and thus puts a high bar on Nietzsche's work. It's the standard which might be wrong here, both because the OP puts forward arguably anachronistic requirements and, most importantly, because it is not the author's intention to uphold those standards. The indirect answer would than involve a discussion of Nietzsche's writing style and way(s) of doing philosophy.

  • I have never insulted anyone here.
    – Ron Maimon
    Apr 22 '12 at 23:35
  • 2
    You seriously don't see a problem with the style and structure of that question? Would you be OK with the entire front page consisting of questions that looked like that one? We can debate all day whether there's a real question hidden in there somewhere. I actually agree that there is. I just couldn't find it buried among all the garbage and rant. The point of closing is to put the question temporarily on hold so that it can be edited, improved, and eventually re-opened.
    – Cody Gray
    Apr 23 '12 at 9:12
  • 5
    In sum, voting to re-open because you see a potential gem of a question hidden in there is premature. Always edit first, then vote to re-open. In fact, once edited, flag for moderator attention and one of us will re-open it with a single binding vote. Don't confuse closure with deletion.
    – Cody Gray
    Apr 23 '12 at 9:12
  • @CodyGray: "You seriously don't see a problem with the style and structure of that question?" I do, but not one which would warrant closing. The OP clearly spelled out - for once - what is the standard against which he sees Nietzsche as failing. That a step forward, as I see it. And he does ask some pretty specific questions at the end. …
    – DBK
    Apr 23 '12 at 16:07
  • @CodyGray: … Having said that - by posting my answer I just wanted to express my opinion and survey if someone else does see it the same way. Since nobody does and no other votes to reopen where cast, I respect the community's decision that the defects of the question warrant closure! …I don't know, it might be that the OP's previous questions and comments have reset my expectations in quality assessment so much that I now view as acceptable everything which does not contain personal attacks? ;)
    – DBK
    Apr 23 '12 at 16:08
  • 1
    @DBK - I also voted to reopen (for exactly the same reasons as you).
    – Rex Kerr
    Apr 23 '12 at 16:25
  • 1
    Fair enough. The issue about when questions should be closed, and on what basis, is a fairly contentious one throughout the SE network. The primary source of confusion lies in what I alluded to at the end of my comment—confusing closure and deletion. Questions get closed to give them a chance to be edited and improved. Yes, there are possibly answerable, useful questions at the end of this longer question, but the entire first half seems like an unconstructive rant against Nietzsche...again. I don't think my standards have been lowered or that this is a personal vendetta.
    – Cody Gray
    Apr 23 '12 at 23:10
  • 2
    In fact, I would have edited the question myself without ever bothering to close it, except that Ron has been known to take issue with my edits before, claiming that I don't adequately represent or convey his own personal Marxist pedagogical upbringing. I swear that I don't see how I'm changing his meaning in any of the edits that I've made, but I figure that perhaps I'm too close to see it. That's why I'm encouraging other people who see the potential of this question to try and edit it to bring out that potential. If the form is wrong, that does merit closure, just not permanently.
    – Cody Gray
    Apr 23 '12 at 23:12
  • @CodyGray: Some of your edits are fine, the problem I had with previous edits was you added to "Did nietzsche rip Sade off?" the question "Did nietzsche even read Sade?" which I found wrong to ask, since it is irrelevant--- ignorance is not a good argument for lack of citation. The other edits I objected to was where you removed "this is the stupidest thing I have read in a book..." from a question where I post an cringingly stupid embarassingly obviously wrong blatantly casually racist claim. If I don't explicitly say that I find this comment stupid, it makes me look like I am respecting it.
    – Ron Maimon
    Apr 24 '12 at 0:50
  • @CodyGray: The point of edits is not to prevent the OP from stating a point of view in the question--- that's allowed. You can explain why the point of view is incorrect in the answer. The point of the edits is to clarify the content, and bring out the actual question. For the question I asked, I am really getting at nietzsche's status as a philosopher--- is it deserved? Are his arguments comparable to those of Kant, or Schopenhauer, or Wittgenstein (whose arguments I also find vague, deficient and prolix, but who, unlike nietzsche, don't compose a sequence of poetically linked non-sequitors).
    – Ron Maimon
    Apr 24 '12 at 0:57
  • @CodyGray: The point of a site like this is to allow clear questions and clear answers which explicate the literature and serve as a quicker go-to than a full research expedition in a major library. Such a process sometimes has the side effect of exposing fraudulent stuff (see skeptics.stackexchange), and sometimes it makes clear why superficially fraudulent stuff (like string theory) is actually deep and important work. Nietzsche's work appears to me to be both superficially fraudulent, and even more fraudulent on deeper inspection. I would be happy to be set straight.
    – Ron Maimon
    Apr 24 '12 at 1:00
  • 3
    It's interesting you choose the Skeptics site as an example. They have a whole list of standards and base-line expectations to which your posts do not conform. And once again, this is not a matter of disagreement with your "point of view". Sort of tired of repeating myself over and over.
    – Cody Gray
    Apr 24 '12 at 2:54
  • @CodyGray: I am not tired. I am on the skeptics site, and I understand their policy. They are dealing with questionable things like ESP which have a lot of false positive evidence, so the accuracy standards are high. Deductive evidence, and evidence of your own eyes is not allowed! Although I have personal experience of lucid dreaming as a child, I could not present this as evidence that lucid dreaming is real, one has to defer to a study of controlled REM movement in lucid dreamers. In subjects where deductive arguments are allowed, like philosophy, this is not the best policy.
    – Ron Maimon
    Apr 24 '12 at 4:35

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