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post #16 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 10:48 AM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

So let's apply Occam (Ockham) to the email server.

Why would one not use the free, secure, ready-to-to government email system for your work related emails? Why would one go to significant expense to set up and run a private email server which was not secure? Why would one have a non-citizen domestic employee (maid) access the emails and print them out, knowing the most secret of information was involved?

It most certainly was not to simplify things. Hillary used many different handheld devices, as did her staff.

The obvious and simple answer is, Hillary did not want her emails located on the government server. It was worth it to her to have the expense and hassles of the private server.

So why would one not want official, sensitive, important emails on a secure government server? The simplest answer is to avoid accountability to law enforcement or to the public.

This doesn't take a big conspiracy theory, just simple logic. The simplest solution to the problem of how to have secure official email communications as a State Department employee is to use the State Department email system. Everyone else in the government knows the system and is familiar with the naming. It is more complicated to give out the private server email information. It is known secure from foreign hacking. It removes any need to worry about compliance with federal laws, regulations, and internal rules.

Occam tells us the simplest route for a Secretary of State is to use the established government email. Occam also tells us then that the simplest answer to why would someone use a private server is to avoid having their official emails on the government server. There is only one downside to having them there, which is discovery. Either official investigation or FOIA request.

You can make of it what you will, but absent some convoluted theory there is no other reason Hillary used the private server. We know she and her minions lied about their reasons. What didn't she want discovered? Lawful activity?

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post #17 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 11:24 AM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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Under Occam's Razor, HRC created a private email server because she's a dunce not because she was trying to hide financial dealings (that haven't been found by the FBI) from prying eyes. That's the key: financial dealings that were not found. If those dealings had been found, the dunce theory would be false and the criminal theory would be true. But as it stands now the financial conspiracy is false and the dunce theory is true.
Do you have access to the FBI's files on what they've found? Do you know for a fact they have not found evidence of any crimes?

There is a lot of circumstantial evidence known in the public domain which strongly suggests a pay-to-play scheme. I'd like to see what the FBI has found, either through her emails or otherwise. I would also be interested in what evidence they may have about other crimes, including gun running in Libya. Then there would be the non-crimes but spectacularly bad judgement and bad intel which Hillary may have been party to in her official duties.

Afaik, the FBI continues to have many agents in many cities investigating the Clinton Foundation. Occam would say they are doing this for good reason, especially since the Obama administration has been working hard to suppress any investigations or prosecutions.
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post #18 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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Do you have access to the FBI's files on what they've found? Do you know for a fact they have not found evidence of any crimes?

There is a lot of circumstantial evidence known in the public domain which strongly suggests a pay-to-play scheme. I'd like to see what the FBI has found, either through her emails or otherwise. I would also be interested in what evidence they may have about other crimes, including gun running in Libya. Then there would be the non-crimes but spectacularly bad judgement and bad intel which Hillary may have been party to in her official duties.

Afaik, the FBI continues to have many agents in many cities investigating the Clinton Foundation. Occam would say they are doing this for good reason, especially since the Obama administration has been working hard to suppress any investigations or prosecutions.
I think there's some confusion about what Occam's Razor applies to. It applies to competing theories that explain observed facts and events. The key is the word 'observed'. An idea or a hunch or a suspicion can't be observed.

By definition any evidence that is postulated but hasn't been found is what O.R. DISCARDS.

It doesn't matter how long the FBI searches for it. The act of searching doesn't prove existence.
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post #19 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 01:49 PM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

On more than one occasion in the last 20 years I've set up an email server on my home computer and linked it to a website domain that i was trying to get off the ground. It is damned easy for a techie to do!

Used it for private communications, yes.

Would a politician know how to do it? Not really.

Would a politician have reasons to use one? Of course.

Would a politician do it for financially nefarious reasons?

I doubt it. Why so? Because the breadcrumb trails back to said politician would be like a superhighway!

Would it be easier to just have access to some secretive email server instead? Magnitude orders of easier and more secret.

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post #20 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 02:25 PM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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Also, most people apply it selectively when it suits their purpose.

Thoughts?
Can't say I blindly agree with your conclusion but your last sentence is most definitely true.

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post #21 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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Just because some people theorise that a conspiracy is taking place or that it took place does not mean that the conspiracy did not take place:-

7 Insane Conspiracies That Actually Happened

https://uk.news.yahoo.com/5-conspira...130654757.html

This is one example of the conspiracy theories in the Yahoo link:-



Would anyone who knew him, teacher, politician, dedicated temperance proponent, have considered it possible that Lowman (an ironic name, under the circumstances?) was actually conspiring to murder fellow American citizens? Probably not, but he was.

The problem with the over-enthusiastic employment of Occam's Razor is that it can cause a nasty cut to the person wielding it, so it should be used with great caution.

There is a corollary to Occam's Razor devised by Doctor of Medicine author Doctor Sir Arthur Conan Doyle:- "When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth".
Yes, some seemingly far-fetched theories turn out to be true, but that isn't a knock on Occam's Razor. O.R. isn't a physical law of the universe, it's a heuristic or a rule of thumb that's helpful in evaluating competing theories because it generally holds true.
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post #22 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 04:22 PM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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Yes, some seemingly far-fetched theories turn out to be true, but that isn't a knock on Occam's Razor. O.R. isn't a physical law of the universe, it's a heuristic or a rule of thumb that's helpful in evaluating competing theories because it generally holds true.
Certainly it is not.

However the application of Occam's Razor in situations that are inappropriate is an issue at times.

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post #23 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 05:26 PM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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I think there's some confusion about what Occam's Razor applies to. It applies to competing theories that explain observed facts and events. The key is the word 'observed'. An idea or a hunch or a suspicion can't be observed.

By definition any evidence that is postulated but hasn't been found is what O.R. DISCARDS.

It doesn't matter how long the FBI searches for it. The act of searching doesn't prove existence.
The assertion was made the FBI has found no evidence. Prove it.

Absent that proof, it is merely a hypothesis that no criminal activity has occurred.
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post #24 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 05:45 PM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

No conservative would *ever* hold a republican to the standard Clinton is being held to. Why not pursue Powell and Bush too, if you are interested in justice? No one cared about Dubyas emails or Powells use of a private server. I am not justifying it, but it is purely partisan and pointless babble. Gee - people in power aren't held to account? Shocking! I will only believe in the new conservative interest in moral/ ethical behavior (they had zero under Dubya) when they hold their leaders to account. No, I didn't vote Clinton or Trump, I will never join a party either. The parties are tribalistic and pointless. They bring out the worst. This election just underlined it for me. Pointless arrogance on the left, misdirected rage on the right. The spectrum is broken.

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post #25 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 05:47 PM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

Occam instructs us to consider the simpler answer the correct one, absent evidence to the contrary. It does not demand the simplest answer be correct, just assumed to be correct until we learn otherwise. The question is why would Hillary choose to use an expensive unsecured private server for her official emails rather than use the existing free secure government administered email system?

So we have two competing theories to answer the question: 1) There was nothing to hide, and 2) There was something to hide.

Now we can apply logic to see which of the two theories is the simpler.

In the first case, Hillary would have chosen to pay for the setup and administration of a private email server for reasons other than hiding something. She lied when she said the reason was to only use one handheld device. We know she used many. She used multiple email addresses, so it wasn't a matter of wanting to have all of her emails, private and professional, use one single email address. Hmm. So the theory is she had nothing to hide, so why would she choose the more difficult and expensive solution? She was experienced within government both as First Lady and as Senator, so the laws regarding handling of confidential information would be familiar enough to raise worries about the legality of everything on the unsecured private server.

I'm having difficulty finding the simple logical path here. What again was the problem to be solved? She needed an email account for her official Secretary of State correspondence. And she needed email accounts for her Foundation and personal correspondence. Did she not already have Foundation and personal accounts? So the problem was what to use for SecState correspondence. How does the private server become the logical answer?

Now the second theory is she had something to hide. The problem to solve is how to keep information away from prying eyes, either government investigators or the public. Ah, now the answer seems simple enough. Since government email accounts and commercial accounts such as gmail are subject to all manner of discovery, a private email account on a server in her own house is a simple solution. One has to accept it appears to violate federal laws, but that doesn't contradict what we know about the Clintons, thus is no obstacle. What would it be she wanted to hide? That is something we can guess at given information publicly available. We don't need a complex conspiracy theory about what was going on, as it isn't central to the theory she wanted to hide something. If she wanted to hide something, the private server is a logical solution to choose.

So would it be a simpler theory that she had nothing to hide yet chose a more difficult and expensive path, or would it be a simpler theory that she wanted to hide something?

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post #26 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 06:41 PM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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I think Occam's Razor should be applied to most situations.

Now, if you want to use Occam's Razor to propose HRC is a dunce, then you would need to apply that to her character... which means if you supported her for POTUS, you weren't supporting a competent person for the office, but a dunce, and you knew it. Are you willing to claim that?

I think use of Occam's Razor actually would disprove that HRC is a dunce. I also think that the "hiding financial dealings" doesn't really hold up to scrutiny. If it were just about hiding finances, she'd have kept state business on state servers, and private business on private servers, thus hiding her information. Which is completely allowed as far as I'm aware. It's much more likely that she didn't want people looking to her emails, and wanted to avoid scrutiny / embarrassment that would potentially arise from future emails being released.

I'm down with you on Occam's Razor though. If anyone's is making complex, convoluted explanations for why HRC did this, they need to have some evidence to back it up.
The problem with this is that there was no separation between state and private matters. She was selling her office for private gain, so she couldn't allow anything to be visible to FOIA requests.

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post #27 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 07:35 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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Certainly it is not.

However the application of Occam's Razor in situations that are inappropriate is an issue at times.
Not a physical law or not a rule of thumb?

I assume you mean physical law.

Sure. Occam's Razor seems more suited to scientific theories. I only started this thread because someone responded to an HRC comment with a Occam's Razor comment.

Occam's Razor doesn't account for human behavior. That's why some people are taking as fact that HRC is a crook and other people are taking as fact that she isn't since she hasn't been legally proved to be one. So the competing theories aren't using the same fact set and Occam's Razor doesn't apply.
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post #28 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-02-2016, 07:47 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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The assertion was made the FBI has found no evidence. Prove it.

Absent that proof, it is merely a hypothesis that no criminal activity has occurred.
You crack me up.

It's merely a hypothesis that criminal activity has occurred. And since the FBI recommended no prosecution then you would also have to postulate that the FBI is crooked which is a very unlikely proposition.
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post #29 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-03-2016, 11:04 AM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

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You crack me up.

It's merely a hypothesis that criminal activity has occurred.
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.
.
.
Under Occam's Razor, HRC created a private email server because she's a dunce not because she was trying to hide financial dealings (that haven't been found by the FBI) from prying eyes. That's the key: financial dealings that were not found. If those dealings had been found, the dunce theory would be false and the criminal theory would be true. But as it stands now the financial conspiracy is false and the dunce theory is true.
Uh, you're the one asserting the FBI has found no evidence of financial dealings. And because of that assertion you have concluded the criminal theory is de facto false.

So can you prove the FBI has found no evidence of illegal activities? Aside from all the obvious violations regarding the use of a private server (several federal felonies there). Unless you can prove the FBI has found no evidence of corruption or financial crimes, you are merely putting forth a theory that Hillary was not engaged in criminal activity.

Just like I am putting forth the theory that she was. I find a significant amount of circumstantial evidence which strongly suggests she and Bill have been engaged in pay-to-play corruption as well as using their non-profit foundation as a slush fund. There is circumstantial evidence Obama and Hillary sanctioned an illegal transfer of arms in Libya. Since the FBI has not released their email trove related to those items we can only go by the publicly available information. I conclude there is a very high probability of multiple serious felonies committed by Hillary, Bill, Obama, Huma, and numerous other people in the inside circle.

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And since the FBI recommended no prosecution then you would also have to postulate that the FBI is crooked which is a very unlikely proposition.
From the FBI's own website: https://www.fbi.gov/about/faqs/what-...-investigation
Quote:
What does the FBI do with information and evidence gathered during an investigation?
If a possible violation of federal law under the jurisdiction of the FBI has occurred, the Bureau will conduct an investigation. The information and evidence gathered in the course of that investigation are then presented to the appropriate U.S. Attorney or Department of Justice official, who will determine whether or not prosecution or further action is warranted. Depending on the outcome of the investigation, evidence is either returned or retained for court.
The FBI does not determine if a crime has been committed, nor do they decide if prosecution should occur. They provide the results of their investigation to the Department of Justice who makes the determination if sufficient evidence exists to proceed with prosecution.

It was ultimately Atty General Lynch and her DoJ who decided not to prosecute Hillary for the email server. The FBI may or may not have been scrupulously honest in their investigation of the email server. They may or may not have been as zealous as they would have had you, for example, done the exact same things as Hillary.

Ultimately, though, Comey is the one who stood up and said he was making a recommendation to the DoJ not to prosecute. It makes his integrity look like a big steaming pile of poop, but it doesn't make the entire FBI corrupt.

Lynch and the DoJ do look like a bunch of totally corrupted political operatives.

Do you truly believe that Comey did not outline convincing evidence that Hillary had committed multiple felonies with the email server?
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post #30 of 42 (permalink) Old 12-03-2016, 11:16 AM
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Re: Occam's Razor and Conspiracy Theories

Note, too, that the federal statute does not require the person intend harm to the USA. 18USC793 sets a standard of "gross negligence". Comey's July statement on the email certainly outlined grossly negligent activity, and he even used the words "extremely careless" to describe Hillary's actions. Is there a difference between gross negligence and extreme carelessness?

But that was not the standard Comey used to make his decision. He used criminal intent as his standard, which is not what the law calls for. And it is not the standard used to prosecute and convict numerous other people under that same statute.

Why would Comey do this? And why would Lynch hide mutely in her office and go along with the charade?

Occam says politics. Dirty politics, protecting the President politics, protecting HRH Hillary politics, protecting the DNC politics. Pretty simple really. Prosecute Hillary and you hand the White House to Trump back in July.
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