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Old 8th December 2017, 07:14 PM   #41
Minoosh
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
I would like to point out that whenever anyone points out a consequence of my political policies, I absolutely agree with them. Facts do change my mind.
Bob, I figured this was you:
Quote:
Only one participant believed that he or she was more biased than the average American.
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Old 8th December 2017, 07:32 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by Travis View Post
Ah. This is good. We will all acknowledge both sides have biases. That will surely take the sting out when the NRA organizes the American KL and "accused liberals" are being put into the camps.
Had I not read some of your more, er, interesting posts in recent months, I'd have assumed this was some sort of joke. These ideas are so divorced from reality as to be surreal.

That said, what is KL?
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Old 8th December 2017, 11:08 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
That said, what is KL?
Generally, in this context KL (or sometimes KZ) is for Konzentrationslager.

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Old 9th December 2017, 06:58 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by BNRT View Post
While I have no doubt that this is true, my guess would be that before looking at the evidence, you start out with some assumptions (or biases). These asumptions might seem or be true or self-evident, but they might not be necessarily so (although I am far from the judge of that). Assumptions about the responsibilities of governments; principles of equality; social, cultural or religious freedoms and so forth. People with different assumptions might look at the same evidence in a very different way.
Fair enough. I tend to value equality, fairness, and human decency.

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Old 9th December 2017, 04:07 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by rustypouch View Post
Exactly. I'm liberal because of evidence. I look at places in the world that appeal to me, both in terms of quality of life and economic properity, and the policies in these places. For some reason, everywhere I'd consider worth living has liberal policies, including labour rights, environmental protections, higher taxes, a lack of religion influencing government, reproductive rights, etc.

Places which follow conservative policies, with low to no taxes, no minimum wage, freedom to openly discriminate, and no environmental protections tend to be unpleasant to live in, unless you are wealthy.

In the US, for example, compare California and New York to Kansas and Oklahoma. I think this holds true on a global scale.

There might be exceptions, but I'm hard pressed to think of them.
But "liberal" and "conservative" are philosophies, doctrines, moral stances. They are not the same as facts and cannot be "based on evidence." The facts, the evidence, can only support your opinion as to which is morally better.

Unfortunately, I can't agree that conservative states "tend to be unpleasant to live in unless you are wealthy." The things you list that you are looking for are all political. But personally, I judge a pleasant life by whether I can afford to live comfortably, whether there is easy access to wilderness, whether the people are reasonably friendly (I'm not in favor of chatting that holds up traffic), whether the population density is fairly low, and whether the internet is available everywhere. By these standards my current state, Utah, scores high, although it hits pretty much every item on your "unpleasant" list.

Just to be clear, I'm a pretty extreme liberal and am in favor of all the same policies you are. But the reason why I have that philosophy really has nothing to do with evidence. I remember even as a small child feeling strongly about fairness and not telling other people what they should do. Surely you're aware of the studies over the last few years showing that conservative and liberal politics are associated with different sets of moral beliefs? Beliefs aren't formed from evidence, but from feelings.

Political principles are beliefs. I think you are interpreting evidence to support your beliefs, not to create them.
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Old 10th December 2017, 09:58 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
Nice list, but you forget Exceptionalism: Republicans way more often than Democrats refuse to seek solutions to US problems by studying how other countries have dealt with similar issues.
There are very few things that are unique about today's America, and it is clear what the result of certain politics will be by observing how they played out in other times and places.


Exceptionalism: Democrats way more often than Republicans refuse to seek solutions to US problems by studying how various states independently try solutions to similar issues, preferring a solution imposed by the federal government.
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Old 10th December 2017, 11:15 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by Whatfor View Post
But "liberal" and "conservative" are philosophies, doctrines, moral stances. They are not the same as facts and cannot be "based on evidence." The facts, the evidence, can only support your opinion as to which is morally better.

Unfortunately, I can't agree that conservative states "tend to be unpleasant to live in unless you are wealthy." The things you list that you are looking for are all political. But personally, I judge a pleasant life by whether I can afford to live comfortably, whether there is easy access to wilderness, whether the people are reasonably friendly (I'm not in favor of chatting that holds up traffic), whether the population density is fairly low, and whether the internet is available everywhere. By these standards my current state, Utah, scores high, although it hits pretty much every item on your "unpleasant" list.

Just to be clear, I'm a pretty extreme liberal and am in favor of all the same policies you are. But the reason why I have that philosophy really has nothing to do with evidence. I remember even as a small child feeling strongly about fairness and not telling other people what they should do. Surely you're aware of the studies over the last few years showing that conservative and liberal politics are associated with different sets of moral beliefs? Beliefs aren't formed from evidence, but from feelings.

Political principles are beliefs. I think you are interpreting evidence to support your beliefs, not to create them.
Perhaps I poorly expressed myself. Looking worldwide, most of the places with policies Republicans say they want aren't places I want to live.

Places where religion is endorsed by governer, with low taxes and regulations (environmental, labour, etc.) without minimum wage, a social safety net, UHC, or anti-discrimination laws. I can't think of anywhere like that where I'd want to do more than visit.

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Old 10th December 2017, 01:34 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
critical thinking

Skepticism is doubting something. Critical thinking is understanding the process of how we know something and separating facts from opinions and assumptions (or biases, if you prefer).
At some point this is just kinda semantics. In practice, I consider "my skepticism" (as a self-identifying skeptic) and "my goal of thinking critically" the same thing.
Sure, skepticism is the doubt part, and the critical thinking is the "how to doubt the right way" part, but it's all one intertwined process.
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Old 10th December 2017, 02:48 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
At some point this is just kinda semantics. In practice, I consider "my skepticism" (as a self-identifying skeptic) and "my goal of thinking critically" the same thing.
Sure, skepticism is the doubt part, and the critical thinking is the "how to doubt the right way" part, but it's all one intertwined process.
Tell that to climate change skeptics.
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Old 10th December 2017, 05:18 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
Tell that to climate change skeptics.
I was actually thinking of flat earthers when I made my post, but I'm just talking about how skepticism and critical thinking are intertwined for me.
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Old 10th December 2017, 06:25 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
I was actually thinking of flat earthers when I made my post, but I'm just talking about how skepticism and critical thinking are intertwined for me.
Fair enough. It's just not universal enough to be synonymous.
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Old 10th December 2017, 06:39 PM   #52
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It is much easier to maintain objectivity if you limit how many subjects you form an opinion on veracity. "I don't know or have an opinion if true of not" and "I don't care" should probably be used more often.
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Old Yesterday, 01:17 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
Fair enough. It's just not universal enough to be synonymous.

Totally. It's very personal to me because I write in "skepticism" on the "what's your religion" portion of all paperwork I have to fill out which leaves a write-in option. (I'm a bit of a Descartes fan, with the whole "I think, therefore I am" thing.)

I also admit to sort of giggling at the notion that people who have been members of "the skeptic community" for 10 or 20 or whatever years need basic education about fighting our own cognitive biases. Like we've never been down this road before. Like, if we were just a tad more introspective, we'd be voting for conservatives.
If you don't find that funny, you have no sense of humor. LOL
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Old Yesterday, 04:59 AM   #54
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I’ve long been taught on this board that critical thinking is the methodology while skepticism is the guiding principle. Moreover, skepticism is largely meaningless if it doesn’t start with self-skepticism.

When confronted with something counter to what you think is true, the first step shouldn’t be to doubt the new idea, but to first identify and be skeptical of your own assumptions around the idea you currently possess. Why do you think that? Because you know or because you have made an assumption, that may or may not be true? Check your own sources, get your own house in order, then check whether the new idea is or could be true.

This board taught me that the hard way.
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Old Yesterday, 01:54 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
Had I not read some of your more, er, interesting posts in recent months, I'd have assumed this was some sort of joke. These ideas are so divorced from reality as to be surreal.

That said, what is KL?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazi_concentration_camps

I'm reading a book on their history. Before they were hugely organized death camps they were ad hoc places pro Hitler goons just setup on the fly to detain anyone that they disliked for political reasons. Often just people they knew that said mean things about the Nazis when they weren't in power yet.

Reading through it and I realized that we have all the mirrors in place. The NRA is setup as the perfect American version of the SA (who chiefly were responsible for the spontaneous abduction and punishment) and we've seen that conservatives seem more concerned with "punishing" liberals than with any cohesive policy in the same way the KL was chiefly about retribution at first.

Put it all together and we have a recipe to repeat the entire damned thing.
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Old Yesterday, 04:01 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy View Post
But is that the point of this thread?
Yes, that's the point of this thread. Also, a reasoned and intelligent discussion of how much bias is present in our current political environment. I'm an optimist, apparently

Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy View Post
Could be I'm just biased, but whenever I've seen this issue raised in a political setting it's invariably boiled down to a tu quoque. "Everyone's biased anyway so I should be free to wallow in my own without criticism" is the unstated but ever-present implication.
Gee, thanks for that not-at-all condescending and dismissive interpretation of a thread.
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Old Yesterday, 04:05 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by BNRT View Post
While I have no doubt that this is true, my guess would be that before looking at the evidence, you start out with some assumptions (or biases). These asumptions might seem or be true or self-evident, but they might not be necessarily so (although I am far from the judge of that). Assumptions about the responsibilities of governments; principles of equality; social, cultural or religious freedoms and so forth. People with different assumptions might look at the same evidence in a very different way.
Very true. It's always going to be filtered through our earliest childhood teachings and our formative experiences.
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Old Yesterday, 04:05 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by Travis View Post
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazi_concentration_camps

I'm reading a book on their history. Before they were hugely organized death camps they were ad hoc places pro Hitler goons just setup on the fly to detain anyone that they disliked for political reasons. Often just people they knew that said mean things about the Nazis when they weren't in power yet.

Reading through it and I realized that we have all the mirrors in place. The NRA is setup as the perfect American version of the SA (who chiefly were responsible for the spontaneous abduction and punishment) and we've seen that conservatives seem more concerned with "punishing" liberals than with any cohesive policy in the same way the KL was chiefly about retribution at first.

Put it all together and we have a recipe to repeat the entire damned thing.
Now this is how you do Politics and Bias!
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Old Yesterday, 04:52 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Yes, that's the point of this thread. Also, a reasoned and intelligent discussion of how much bias is present in our current political environment.
It's not so much bias as an ideological rejection of objective reality. What Trump does goes beyond mere spin.
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Old Yesterday, 05:06 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
It's not so much bias as an ideological rejection of objective reality. What Trump does goes beyond mere spin.
Okay... but do you realize that you're doing exactly what the articles in the OP call out? You're assigning all of the flaws, all of the bias, all of the poor logic to "the other side" and pretty much assuming that your side doesn't engage in the same behavior. The topics are different, and in many cases the magnitude is different...

But it also has a lot less to do with the topic at hand than the way in which it is addressed. The "other side" is dumb, they're illogical, they're rejecting reality, they're evil, they're bad, they're immoral.

It all boils down to the same story: they're bad and we're good.
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Old Yesterday, 05:20 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Okay... but do you realize that you're doing exactly what the articles in the OP call out? You're assigning all of the flaws, all of the bias, all of the poor logic to "the other side" and pretty much assuming that your side doesn't engage in the same behavior.
I think you've missed both the point of both the first article and the responses of many of the posters in this thread in relation to bias.

For example, how do you know what I'm thinking? What thought processes did I go through to reach the positions I have stated in this thread?

Does objective reality have a role to play in determining what is bias and what is not, or is any position biased regardless of objective supporting evidence?


Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
But it also has a lot less to do with the topic at hand than the way in which it is addressed. The "other side" is dumb, they're illogical, they're rejecting reality, they're evil, they're bad, they're immoral.
Except for this, I did not use any of those terms. Again, do you believe there an objective reality? If so, do you believe it has any role to play in a discussion of bias? What does a lack of bias mean, in your opinion?

ETA Side note: I note that this is the first time you've included "rejecting reality" as an example of saying "The other side is dumb". In fact, a focus on objective reality is at the very center of critical thinking. It is curious that you added them to your list when it does not seem to fit with the other subjective terms.
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Old Yesterday, 07:50 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
I’ve long been taught on this board that critical thinking is the methodology while skepticism is the guiding principle. Moreover, skepticism is largely meaningless if it doesn’t start with self-skepticism.

When confronted with something counter to what you think is true, the first step shouldn’t be to doubt the new idea, but to first identify and be skeptical of your own assumptions around the idea you currently possess. Why do you think that? Because you know or because you have made an assumption, that may or may not be true? Check your own sources, get your own house in order, then check whether the new idea is or could be true.

This board taught me that the hard way.
Absolutely to all of that, especially the bolded bit.

Self-skepticism is the purest form of skepticism (for me), and none of us are perfect yet, or ever will be. But we can always aim at self-improvement in these matters.
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Old Yesterday, 08:06 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Okay... but do you realize that you're doing exactly what the articles in the OP call out? You're assigning all of the flaws, all of the bias, all of the poor logic to "the other side" and pretty much assuming that your side doesn't engage in the same behavior.
No, we're actually not, I really don't think.

I'm a Green (in a full-on-red state, so my POTUS votes are completely meaningless even in terms of "spoilering") despised almost equally by Democrats and conservatives alike. But I've suffered much, much worse "verbal abuse" and what felt like was "bullying" by Democrats.

Sometimes I've wanted to reach through the screen and virtually choke people I think of as the "alt-center".

And yet...

The modern Republican party is just peculiar in the whole of the developed world when it comes to vehement superstition, anti-science, voodoo economics, etc. The Tories in the UK might come in second, but I'm not sure they're a close second.

I grew up YEC (and conservative, btw), but the day eventually came when I realized it's just not true, can't be true, makes no sense, and is obviously made-up mythology. And modern conservative theories on "how the world works" are STRIKINGLY wrong like that.
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Old Yesterday, 08:36 PM   #64
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I'm a Democrat because this party since FDR has mostly, but not always looked out for working people, the poor, seniors and people of different ethnicities. I'm not religious but I believe we need to look out for each other. The Dems hav stood for and implemented policies for protecting the environment and to improve working conditions. In comparison, the GOP has for example fought for Right to Work legislation that threaten workers ability to negotiate, They have always opposed minimum wage laws and opposed any legislation that puts consumer and workers first.

I actually agree somewhat with Trump on immigration and the issue with Islam. But how he has gone about both is despicable as well as not practicable.

I see the GOP and Democrats protecting a broken health care system. I look at countries with universal health care spending much much less and everybody is covered. But universally the GOP is uninterested in fixing the problem.

Do I have a bias toward more Liberal policies? Absolutely, but I'm only interested in a country that works for as many as possible.

What has the President and the GOP fought for? Taking away healthcare for the poor and middle class. Tax cuts for the richest Americans and corporations. Implemented and attempts to implement policies that eliminate protections for minorities and homosexuals. Radically change the Internet in a way that places the profits for Communications corporations above everyone else. By destroying Net Neutrality the communications companies can and will charge content providers as well as users for bandwidth. This will allow them to be able to throttle popular or new interesting applications while allowing their cash cows priority.

Am I biased? I guess you could say I have a policy bias against what the GOP stands for.
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Old Today, 06:24 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy
Could be I'm just biased, but whenever I've seen this issue raised in a political setting it's invariably boiled down to a tu quoque. "Everyone's biased anyway so I should be free to wallow in my own without criticism" is the unstated but ever-present implication.
Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Gee, thanks for that not-at-all condescending and dismissive interpretation of a thread.
Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Okay... but do you realize that you're doing exactly what the articles in the OP call out? You're assigning all of the flaws, all of the bias, all of the poor logic to "the other side" and pretty much assuming that your side doesn't engage in the same behavior. The topics are different, and in many cases the magnitude is different...

But it also has a lot less to do with the topic at hand than the way in which it is addressed. The "other side" is dumb, they're illogical, they're rejecting reality, they're evil, they're bad, they're immoral.

It all boils down to the same story: they're bad and we're good.
Yeah, I'm sticking by that interpretation for now.

If you'd like to change my mind: rather than accusing the rest of us of being biased, how have the articles in your OP revealed your bias, and how are you trying to correct it?
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Old Today, 07:42 AM   #66
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Originally Posted by Travis View Post
<snip>
The NRA is setup as the perfect American version of the SA (who chiefly were responsible for the spontaneous abduction and punishment) and we've seen that conservatives seem more concerned with "punishing" liberals than with any cohesive policy in the same way the KL was chiefly about retribution at first.

Put it all together and we have a recipe to repeat the entire damned thing.
The only thing is that if the NRA (or any like-minded group) tried to do what you are saying, they most likely will discover the true meaning of the second part of the old saying "Live by the sword ... "

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Old Today, 09:41 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy View Post
If you'd like to change my mind: rather than accusing the rest of us of being biased, how have the articles in your OP revealed your bias, and how are you trying to correct it?
I think the subtle point being missed here is that Cracked article, which is really quite good, is meant for self-evaluation and improvement. It is not meant as a club for bashing others.

Further, the whole point is that these traps can be avoided. Criticisms of a particular viewpoint does not automatically mean that the criticizer is making one of these fallacies. It all depends one the foundation on which the criticizer is making the criticism. It could be irrational bias, but it could be completely legitimate, too. In critical thinking, how a conclusion is reached is just as important as the conclusion itself.
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Old Today, 06:09 PM   #68
Travis
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Originally Posted by carlvs View Post
The only thing is that if the NRA (or any like-minded group) tried to do what you are saying, they most likely will discover the true meaning of the second part of the old saying "Live by the sword ... "
Of course the NRA thinks they have ALL THE GUNS. I'm hoping to be among those that prove them us "Libcucks" will fight back.
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