Debate Proposal: Sungenis vs. Palm, Michael, Forrest, et.s, al

Robert Sungenis and a group of indivuals including Jacob Michael, David Palm, and Michael Forrest have been engaging in a battle of minds and ideas within the apologetic’s community. This is not good for the individuals involved, nor for the Catholic community in general. Without getting into who is right or wrong at this point, I would like to suggest a debate be held between the parties in a moderated setting to allow them to iron out at least some of their differences. One or all the indivduals named could choose to be one side of the debate. The other would be Sungenis. The debate I propose would operate in this manner (this could be modified, but it is a starting point):


I would propose that Sungenis picks a question to debate and satjg (call it Palm and Michael at this point) pick a topic. For the purposes of rebuilding relations, it does not even have to be related to Judaism. Both sides need to agree on both topics.

My thought is that both sides choose judges, say two, then the four judges choose a fifth party that they can all agree on. The fifth judge will publish the comments, interact with the public, etc., and is considered the lead judge. Let the judges develop a set of rules or criteria for the debate, including tone of language, courtesy rules, criteria for documentation, etc.

Each side will first pass their comments on to the 2 judges they picked who will prescreen them for adherence to the criteria, and either accept or send back for modification. Once the 2 judges are satisfied, then it gets passed onto the 5 judges, who will review them and if acceptable publish them. If not acceptable, a vote can be taken on any specific discrepancy relative to the criteria, and if 3 out of 5 agree, it is sent back for modification. Once acceptable the comments are published. The 5 judges will receive comments from both sides for a given round at the same time. When the 5 judges receive the comments, the comments are also sent to opposing sides for review. After publication (likely by the 5th “neutral” judge) and public comment, the 5 judges will judge the arguments of each side for the specific questions of the round and the overall debate.

Each of the two debates will have specific questions and criteria for judgement, as well as specifying the number of rounds, timing, etc. The debate could include the formation of a consultory panel of experts agreed upon by either the 2 judges for each side (say 1 spot), the 2 judges for the opposing side (say 1 spot), and all 5 judges (say 3 spots).

There could be 3 websites (blogs). One for each side and one which is the official website for the debate. The website for each side could be used to air opinions rejected by the full panel of judges, only to foster public opinion. Arguments of the parties, and Expert opinions, all reviewed and accepted by the 5 judge panel could be published on the main website. Any unaccepted items could be published by either or both opposing sides on their websites. For purposes of the debate results, only the main website is considered official. Alternately, to keep bickering down, only one website could be maintained, and only opinions ultimately accepted by the 5 judge panel would be published.

Another possibility is that opposing sides could pick a specific number of people who would not be allowed to be chosen as judges (say 3 names per side). This would be stated immediately after the topics are chosen. If a side declines the privilige, this also need be stated up front. The names would not be made public.

Mark Wyatt

Robert Sungenis has stated to me, 12:47 PM, PST, March 8th 2007, that he will accept this proposal.

Mark Wyatt

I think that Mark Shea nailed this down pretty well on his blog:

You have demonstrated countless times that you will make any excuse for Bob. This “debate” is simply another form of excusing. It’s purpose to is get people from attending to the fact that Bob is a liar (and you are an enabler) who need to repent and to get them to attend to something else. It’s secondary purpose is to give him and you an excuse for saying that those who will not move on and pretend that Bob has not borne false witness and refused to repent are “afraid to debate the issues”. It’s been your standard operating procedure throughout this ridiculous farce.

The only issue (and it’s not open for debate) is this: Resolved: Bob Sungenis irresponsibly ran a falsified quote and attributed it to Roy Schoeman as part of his ongoing effort to condemn a brother in Christ by any means necessary. When the quote was proven to be false, he refused to retract it and had the gall to accuse his victim of falsifying the real quote in order to embarrass him. This too is documentably false. But Sungenis continues to lie and you, Mark, continue to make excuses for it.

Nobody with an ounce of self-respect would engage either of you in debate till you both repent.
Mark Shea | Homepage | 03.08.07 - 4:41 pm | #

To which I replied:

I make no excuses for it. I found the quote and published it. I asked him to remove it. He still has not accepted it is false. There is a small chance it still could be real, but I think it is not worth the harm to keep it. If it ever turned out to be true it could be put back up.

The satjg could accept the debate with the caveat that they see the quote removed.
Mark Wyatt
Mark Wyatt | Homepage | 03.08.07 - 4:54 pm | #

“Nobody with an ounce of self-respect would engage either of you in debate till you both repent.”

I was not proposing I be in the debate.

Mark Wyatt
Mark Wyatt | Homepage | 03.08.07 - 4:55 pm | #

“…till you … repent.”

I have already stated an apology on Envoy for my having had aired the quote on Envoy.

Mark Wyatt
Mark Wyatt | Homepage | 03.08.07 - 4:58 pm | #

P.S. when I said “I found the quote and published it” I meant the quote on the AHC website which contradicted the one in RObert’s Q&A.

Mark Wyatt
Mark Wyatt | Homepage | 03.08.07 - 5:07 pm | #


I just got my copy of Schoeman’s SALVATION IS FROM THE JEWS. It came yesterday, and I was scanning through it last night. It looks pretty good, nothing at all (so far) like the heresy book Bob made it seem like. I have to read it thoroughly, though, to make a fair evaluation.

Jaypeeto3 (aka Jaypeeto4)

I dont understand why repentance is a requisite to debate the issue… Why not just debate the issue of supersessionism and the theology found in SIFTJ?

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