Without change something sleeps inside us, and seldom awakens. The sleeper must awaken. -- Frank Herbert, Dune
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You're not going to believe what I'm about to tell you

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FeanorsCurse
83 days ago
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Germany
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4 public comments
chrishiestand
83 days ago
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so good, so timely
San Diego, CA, USA
MaryEllenCG
83 days ago
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This is super interesting, and very helpful.
Greater Bostonia
duerig
83 days ago
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Hmm. This was interesting up until it got into the evo-psych explanation at the end. Yes, we probably did evolve to dismiss ideas that threaten our core beliefs. But like almost any pattern of thought, it is both a consistent bias and a reasonable thing to do most of the time.

It is completely rational to be slow to change your beliefs when faced with new evidence. It is also completely rational to respond to intellectual threats with hostility and retrenchment. At the same time, these completely rational responses can also lead us to reject compelling evidence in some circumstances.

Why are these responses rational? First, because conversation, books, articles, and speeches are all very weak evidence. I've got a mountain of experience behind me informing my beliefs. And somebody has just added a metaphorical pebble. Occasionally, it might cause a landslide resulting in a profound change in my understanding of the world. But most of the time it does not. If somebody changes their mind every time they hear an assertion, we tend to think of them as foolish and credulous. And for good reason.

I have heard assertions throughout my life. Some of them were true and many of them were false. I have to evaluate this assertion to get a sense of how probable it is.

Second, There is no fundamental way for me to perceive whether an assertion is true or false just by looking at it. Instead, I have to make a judgement based on the my previous beliefs and experiences (also known as pre-existing biases) and how much I trust the person making the assertion (also known as accepting an argument from authority). In a formal logic sense, both of these are clearly fallacies. But they are all I have to go on. So I have to use these tools to make sense of the assertion. If the assertion fits comfortably in the house of my core beliefs and I have a certain amount of trust in the asserter, then I might be willing to accept it. Otherwise, I will be likely to reject it.

Now let's say that somebody said something that sounds absurd. 'Absurd' is just another name for something that doesn't fit my core beliefs. In that case, I would likely reject it out of hand. And I would also feel threatened. I would likely downgrade the source. I might even become angry because a common cause of false assertions is that somebody is trying to trick me. Maybe they want me to look foolish or they want to defraud me.

Now the difficulty is that these reactions are reasonable whether or not my core beliefs are true. So if I come to have a core set of beliefs that happens to be incorrect (which is almost certainly true to some extent or another), then this rule of thumb can prevent me from replacing them with better core beliefs that are more true.

I think that the answer has to be somewhere in the middle. We should not be changing our beliefs every time we hear a countervailing assertion. But it is also important to seek out different perspectives on those beliefs. If there are no fresh inlets, our core beliefs will be stagnant intellectual swamps. But if we accept new assertions too readily, then we become a river with each new idea passing through and then replaced by the next and we have no possibility of retaining truth.

And it is important to use this kind of thought process as a form of self-improvement rather than as an argumentative bludgeon. It is far too easy to read about some fallacy or bias and then use it as a reason to find your opponent 'irrational' rather than using it as a tool for yourself.
deezil
83 days ago
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THIS THIS THIS THIS THIS ALL DAY THIS.
Louisville, Kentucky

Adjective Foods

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Contains 100% of your recommended daily allowance!
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FeanorsCurse
217 days ago
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Germany
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Covarr
215 days ago
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The juice-like drink industry already has this down. "I'm going to the store, need anything?" "Yeah, buy me a gallon of purple"
Moses Lake, WA
satadru
217 days ago
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I have the perfect supermarket in mind for these products: https://www.google.com/maps/place/Gracefully/@40.7753114,-73.9901871,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x89c2585e0641d799:0xfab05c3ce38e4797!8m2!3d40.7753114!4d-73.9879984
New York, NY
alt_text_bot
217 days ago
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Contains 100% of your recommended daily allowance!

Ich habe hier ja schon ein paar Mal die Position vertreten, ...

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Ich habe hier ja schon ein paar Mal die Position vertreten, dass man Andersdenkende nicht ausgrenzen darf, sondern im Gegenteil mit ihnen reden muss.

Die meisten Extremisten haben sich ein Weltbild aufgebaut, in dem sie die Verfolgten und Ausgegrenzten sind, aber das ist nur ein Weltbild, keine faktenbasierte Erkenntnis. Das lässt sich nur solange halten, wie sie das auch so erfahren. Durch "No Platform" bestärkt man die noch in ihrer Wagenburg-Mentalität. Und man macht sich gleichzeitig alle Chancen kaputt, gefährdete Menschen noch aufzufangen, bevor sie sich solchen Gruppierungen anschließen.

Hier ging es schon mal um so eine Geschichte, damals beim Sohn des Stormfront-Gründers. Der hat gegen "die Juden" gehetzt, bis er am College auf welche traf und die ihn nicht nur nicht rausschmissen, als sie rausfanden, wer er ist, sondern ihn einluden. Und dann konnten sie ihn umstimmen.

Und hier ist noch so eine Geschichte, passend zur Weihnachtszeit. Es geht um einen schwarzen Pianisten, der in einer Kaschemme in Maryland, einem Truck Stop, Klavier gespielt hat, und im Publikum saß ein Ku-Klux-Klan-Mitglied. Die haben ins Gespräch, der Pianist ließ sich weiterreichen unter den Klansmen, und erreichte so den "Grand Dragon", den Klan-Chef von Maryland.

Er fordere die Rassisten heraus, »aber nicht auf unhöfliche oder grobe Art. Man macht das höflich und klug. Wenn man die Dinge auf diese Weise angeht, stehen die Chancen gut, dass sie zuhören und dir auch eine Plattform geben. Kelly und ich haben uns über die Jahre immer wieder hingesetzt und uns ausgetauscht. Der Mörtel, der sein Weltbild betonierte, begann zu bröckeln. Dann zu zerbrechen. Und dann fiel es ganz in sich zusammen.«

Es ist eben schwer, jemanden zu hassen, den man gut kennt.

Und mit dieser Herangehensweise hat er erreicht, dass sich der Klan in Maryland aufgelöst hat.

Ein schwarzer Pianist. Hat den KKK in Maryland aufgelöst. Völlig gewaltfrei. Durch mit den Leuten reden.

Und was mich an der Story am meisten mitnimmt: Er wird auch noch angefeindet für seine Methoden. Von anderen Schwarzen, die ihn als Verräter beschimpfen. Hier ist seine Antwort:

An dieser Stelle zieht Davis gerne seine zwei Dutzend Klan-Roben aus dem Schrank und sagt: »Schau, das habe ich gemacht, um dem Rassismus einen Denkzettel zu verpassen. Ich habe die Roben und Hauben von mehr als zwei Dutzend Menschen in meinem Schrank, die ihre Ansichten geändert haben, weil ich mich mit ihnen an einen Tisch gesetzt habe. Und, was machen Sie? Wie viele Roben haben Sie gesammelt?« Das lässt die meisten Kritiker verstummen.
Wer gut Englisch kann, kann sich hier den Original-Podcast anhören, wo der Pianist seine Geschichte erzählt.
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FeanorsCurse
218 days ago
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Germany
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Warum heise online derzeit keine Links zum LG Hamburg setzt

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Statt eines Kommentars: Warum heise online keine Links zum LG Hamburg setzt

Nach dem Linkhaftungsurteil des Landgerichts Hamburg: Verlagsjustiziar Joerg Heidrich hat für heise online nachgeforscht, ob sich der Verlag in Abmahngefahr begibt, wenn er Links zum Online-Auftritt des LG Hamburg setzt.

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FeanorsCurse
227 days ago
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Germany
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The End of Identity Liberalism

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When young people arrive at college they are encouraged to keep this focus on themselves by student groups, faculty members and also administrators whose full-time job is to deal with — and heighten the significance of — “diversity issues.” Fox News and other conservative media outlets make great sport of mocking the “campus craziness” that surrounds such issues, and more often than not they are right to. Which only plays into the hands of populist demagogues who want to delegitimize learning in the eyes of those who have never set foot on a campus. How to explain to the average voter the supposed moral urgency of giving college students the right to choose the designated gender pronouns to be used when addressing them? How not to laugh along with those voters at the story of a University of Michigan prankster who wrote in “His Majesty”?

This campus-diversity consciousness has over the years filtered into the liberal media, and not subtly. Affirmative action for women and minorities at America’s newspapers and broadcasters has been an extraordinary social achievement — and has even changed, quite literally, the face of right-wing media, as journalists like Megyn Kelly and Laura Ingraham have gained prominence. But it also appears to have encouraged the assumption, especially among younger journalists and editors, that simply by focusing on identity they have done their jobs.

Recently I performed a little experiment during a sabbatical in France: For a full year I read only European publications, not American ones. My thought was to try seeing the world as European readers did. But it was far more instructive to return home and realize how the lens of identity has transformed American reporting in recent years. How often, for example, the laziest story in American journalism — about the “first X to do Y” — is told and retold. Fascination with the identity drama has even affected foreign reporting, which is in distressingly short supply. However interesting it may be to read, say, about the fate of transgender people in Egypt, it contributes nothing to educating Americans about the powerful political and religious currents that will determine Egypt’s future, and indirectly, our own. No major news outlet in Europe would think of adopting such a focus.

But it is at the level of electoral politics that identity liberalism has failed most spectacularly, as we have just seen. National politics in healthy periods is not about “difference,” it is about commonality. And it will be dominated by whoever best captures Americans’ imaginations about our shared destiny. Ronald Reagan did that very skillfully, whatever one may think of his vision. So did Bill Clinton, who took a page from Reagan’s playbook. He seized the Democratic Party away from its identity-conscious wing, concentrated his energies on domestic programs that would benefit everyone (like national health insurance) and defined America’s role in the post-1989 world. By remaining in office for two terms, he was then able to accomplish much for different groups in the Democratic coalition. Identity politics, by contrast, is largely expressive, not persuasive. Which is why it never wins elections — but can lose them.

The media’s newfound, almost anthropological, interest in the angry white male reveals as much about the state of our liberalism as it does about this much maligned, and previously ignored, figure. A convenient liberal interpretation of the recent presidential election would have it that Mr. Trump won in large part because he managed to transform economic disadvantage into racial rage — the “whitelash” thesis. This is convenient because it sanctions a conviction of moral superiority and allows liberals to ignore what those voters said were their overriding concerns. It also encourages the fantasy that the Republican right is doomed to demographic extinction in the long run — which means liberals have only to wait for the country to fall into their laps. The surprisingly high percentage of the Latino vote that went to Mr. Trump should remind us that the longer ethnic groups are here in this country, the more politically diverse they become.

Finally, the whitelash thesis is convenient because it absolves liberals of not recognizing how their own obsession with diversity has encouraged white, rural, religious Americans to think of themselves as a disadvantaged group whose identity is being threatened or ignored. Such people are not actually reacting against the reality of our diverse America (they tend, after all, to live in homogeneous areas of the country). But they are reacting against the omnipresent rhetoric of identity, which is what they mean by “political correctness.” Liberals should bear in mind that the first identity movement in American politics was the Ku Klux Klan, which still exists. Those who play the identity game should be prepared to lose it.

We need a post-identity liberalism, and it should draw from the past successes of pre-identity liberalism. Such a liberalism would concentrate on widening its base by appealing to Americans as Americans and emphasizing the issues that affect a vast majority of them. It would speak to the nation as a nation of citizens who are in this together and must help one another. As for narrower issues that are highly charged symbolically and can drive potential allies away, especially those touching on sexuality and religion, such a liberalism would work quietly, sensitively and with a proper sense of scale. (To paraphrase Bernie Sanders, America is sick and tired of hearing about liberals’ damn bathrooms.)

Teachers committed to such a liberalism would refocus attention on their main political responsibility in a democracy: to form committed citizens aware of their system of government and the major forces and events in our history. A post-identity liberalism would also emphasize that democracy is not only about rights; it also confers duties on its citizens, such as the duties to keep informed and vote. A post-identity liberal press would begin educating itself about parts of the country that have been ignored, and about what matters there, especially religion. And it would take seriously its responsibility to educate Americans about the major forces shaping world politics, especially their historical dimension.

Some years ago I was invited to a union convention in Florida to speak on a panel about Franklin D. Roosevelt’s famous Four Freedoms speech of 1941. The hall was full of representatives from local chapters — men, women, blacks, whites, Latinos. We began by singing the national anthem, and then sat down to listen to a recording of Roosevelt’s speech. As I looked out into the crowd, and saw the array of different faces, I was struck by how focused they were on what they shared. And listening to Roosevelt’s stirring voice as he invoked the freedom of speech, the freedom of worship, the freedom from want and the freedom from fear — freedoms that Roosevelt demanded for “everyone in the world” — I was reminded of what the real foundations of modern American liberalism are.

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FeanorsCurse
238 days ago
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Germany
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Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal - Immortality

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Hovertext:
This method can be used on anything bad about human existence!

New comic!
Today's News:

Over a week left and we've sold about 75% of BAHFest tickets!

It's going to be a particularly strong lineup this year :)

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FeanorsCurse
277 days ago
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Germany
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